Last week I mentioned that we have a ton of mushrooms this year. I’ve been taking pictures of them all week and am sharing them here today, plus a few other lovely bits from the yard — including a freshly hatched monarch butterfly chrysalis.


The humidity has finally moved out and the mourning doves sound especially happy. I’m wrapped in my Reagan cardigan this morning (Ravelry link), toes buried in my sheepskin rug, and my morning coffee as the perfect companion. This is what summer in New Hampshire should always be like!

It’s been a rainy July – the rainiest on record? We’ve gotten several thunderstorms which are rarer here than in the more southern states. Because the last few years have been so dry, this is the first year we’ve gotten to see the evidence of the vast underground mushroom network in our yard.

I don’t know anything about mushrooms. I bought a couple of field guides this year but I’m still too unsure about identifying them to actually cook any. We’ve noticed that they change shape over time and I’m certain I’d make a wrong decision. We spend a good chunk of time every day looking in on the mushrooms, watching them grow and die over time, and then watching new ones sprout up nearby. There’s such a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors in our yard right now.

Our science curriculum this year is The Wonders of the Plant and Fungi Kingdoms, which we started last week, so this summer is the perfect lead-in to this year’s learning!

My chamomile is off to the races! So is our peppermint. My next step is to figure out when to start clipping and drying the various herbs I have going. I’m looking forward to containers of loose leaf herbal tea this winter to help with all of the reading aloud I’ll be doing.

monarch chrysalis

Matthew and Bronwyn found the monarch butterfly right after it hatched earlier this week. I didn’t get a picture of the butterfly but went back and snapped a shot of the chrysalis – it was attached to a weed in our front yard. Another benefit to not weeding!

You might remember that we hatched several monarch butterflies last year. I’m keeping my eye on the milkweed and watching for monarch caterpillars. I haven’t spotted any yet, but this chrysalis is proof that they’re around. I have, however, found a tomato hornworm on the ground. That thing went directly to the chicken coop.


Friends, that’s me for the week. My plans for the weekend are simple: I’ll be doing whatever the kids need to be entertained. And hopefully I’ll squeeze in a few rows of knitting and some reading time, but that’s never a guarantee on the weekend. I hope I’ll see you right back here on Monday when I share a page from my notebook. Take good care!

6 thoughts

  1. I am way too chicken to try to gather edible mushrooms, but I do enjoy seeing all the wild ones popping up (among other fungi). I hope you do get some reading and knitting time in this weekend!

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  2. I wouldn’t feel confident eating any wild mushrooms either, but your pictures are lovely! I have been trying to grow milkweed from seed for a while and haven’t had success yet. This year I’m going to set it out in the fall and see if overwintering will help. I would love to see a monarch or evidence of a monarch in my backyard!

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  3. Wow, great mushroom photos! I have had no success growing milkweed from seed either… so I welcome your tips on getting it to grow! I hope your weekend has been as full of joy as these images are!

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  4. I’m always amazed to see huge mushrooms when I walk Holly in the mornings … in places where I KNOW there weren’t any mushrooms the day before. How fun for the kids to check on them periodically and “see” them grow! (and I hope you enjoyed the weekend you wished for!)

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