Along came a spider…. and a toad….and a tree…

Mother Nature, queen of all she sees…

marbled orbweaver

Marbled Orbweaver, Araneus marmoreus

Not dangerous; the dogs found it clinging to the side of the house yesterday afternoon.  So that’s what’s been spinning all those webs on the porch rails!  Its bulbous body was approximately 18 mm across – HUGE.

the toad

Bufo Americanus?

We were walking along the Lily River when the dog stopped to sniff something on the path.  I bent down to look… ahhhhh!  A toad!  Dog sniffed and walked away, thank goodness.  I don’t think toads taste very good.  I’m not sure what kind of toad he was since I don’t know much about toads, but a little research leads me to think Bufo Americanus.  Isn’t Bufo a great name?


If a tree falls in the forest…..

This was too close for comfort.  We stopped to write down a phone number from a sign, and 10 seconds later the tree fell a few feet in front of the car.  Whoa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Mother nature was looking out for me that day!


It was a BIG tree.

This is in the National Forest in Forest County two weeks ago… yes, they have had snow.  It was a lovely walk in the woods with the crunchy leaves and the dusting of snow on the evergreens and the golden tamarack.  Some of the trees were 400 years old!

400 years old

Very old!

And some of the trees were very big.  See those black gloves flapping on either side of the trunk?


Very big!

old baldy

Old Baldy.


Lovely Lily in the fall.

tamarack swamp

Golden flames of Tamarack.

zoey and terra

And speaking of old and big… Zoey is a year old already, and about as large as she is going to get (14 pounds wringing wet).  She thinks she is big and mean, though, and is quite willing to take on any pit bull in the neighborhood.  Try as we might, we cannot disabuse her of the notion!


So I have been tiptoeing around blogland, dropping in and reading, and tiptoeing out again.  Forgive me, all of my friends, for not commenting.  I have been saving my typing fingers for Nanowrimo (National Novel Writing Month).   I did a very sorry job of it last year, and promised myself better output this year.  I am working on a sequel to a young adult fantasy completed this past summer (I wasn’t just lazing around in Bali!).  That completed manuscript is in the hands of an editor of a publishing company right now.  I anxiously await her verdict, though I suspect it will be a while.

7 thoughts on “Along came a spider…. and a toad….and a tree…

  1. Qu, I am so delighted to view this latest blog. I also caught up on the final ones of Bali. WOW What a trip. When you got to the sea, with all that beauty, I wanted to run right into the waves (I am or was a great swimmer-learned on Puget Sound). It was Paradise for me to see the sea and the gorgeous place you stayed. When I read what you write I become so immersed as imagining what it would be like to have been there – so easy because your descriptive powers are some thing else! Reminded me that we need to set up a time for our little show and tell. Problems right now is the ladies are off to the seven winds again. I’ll nail them soon. How about calling it Bali in Wisconsin Winter? I am so excited about the fantasy being in the mitts of a publisher. Thank your for your gift of story telling, Qu. Probably your fav audience. Liz

    Thanks Liz. You always make my day! I will be ready for the slide show when you choose a date…. a non-Packer weekend, I will assume…
    I still have a coconut that I brought back, in the ‘frig, so I will cook something.
    Thanks for the visit and the lovely comment! Qu


  2. So glad to see and read you again. Cannot believe there is snow, or the size of those trees! Wow. (and yes, I like the Bufo frog, too)

    Bufo frog – great character for a story! The snow was beautiful – I am anxious for it to snow at home…. but I don’t have to shovel! Thanks for visiting, ds. It is good to be in touch with blog pals.


  3. What a treat to find you and your assorted creatures here this morning. I’ve never seen such a beautiful spider. I’m not exactly a fan of the creatures, but at least I’ve taught myself not to say, “Eeuuuwwwwww…” and turn away.

    Good for you to discipline yourself to just tiptoe in and out and focus on what you want to do. I suspect everyone you read or who reads you understands that NaNo requires some slight adjustments to life. 😉

    I told Oh! that my goal this year was to make at least a tiny foray into “storytelling”. I’m calling it “local story writing month”, or LoStoWriMo 😉 I’ve met that tiny goal and have my first try at character and dialogue posted. The best part of the post isn’t the literary quality, but the sudden knowledge that writing fiction could be fun!

    I hope the rest of the month brings you much NaNo success, and even more fun!

    Thanks, Linda. I am going to come creeping out of my hiding place this weekend to read and comment on your fiction. I am so pleased for you; you found fiction writing fun. Hurrah! (And I am not surprised.)
    I pretty much think eeuuwwww about spiders, too. There was no way this guy was getting close to me, however, so I felt safe.


  4. Holy freaking cow! How crazy is that?!?! You must have been quite shocked. Although it must have also been quite the site to see, especially since it didn’t damage you or your car. I’m so glad it missed!!!

    And holy macaroni, too!!!!! It was quite incredible. It seemed like slow motion, watching it simply tip over, with some crackling and snapping of branches, and then a CRASH when it hit the road, and poofs of snow went up in the air. It was quite a sight, and I just sat for a minute with my mouth hanging open. Then I wanted to call my kids and say, “I’m alive!!” but there is no reception up there.


  5. What wonderful photos! I can’t believe there is so much winter there — we haven’t had any yet though they say it will chill out more over the weekend. And Zoey and pal — a year? I can’t believe that, either!

    Welcome back to blog land, ever so gently of course. But oh, to see more of your beautiful pix and know you’re back brings a big smile of gratitude to my face!

    Happy Nano and good luck — I’m not sure what you novel is, but I’ll tell you, after that trip, I know you have lots to say — whether you use it for Nano or otherwise!

    Happy Thanksgiving and thanks again for your words of support.

    Thank you, Jeanie. I hope you had a wonderful day with your special guysz 🙂
    It is nice to be back in blog land…. but I am going to have to limit myself, though I sure don’t want to. Too much work to do! Thanks for being such a great support – I appreciate you.


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