Exploring with my explorer

We woke up to rain this morning, which means the boys will be bouncing off the walls by noon. While wishing for dry weather, I remembered that I had a slew of photos to post from the weekend.

One of the things that makes Jeremy fantastic is his love for nature and animals. I’d love to say that it’s because we’ve raised him that way, but that logic wouldn’t hold for Jackson. (He needs books and air conditioning, please.) No, Jeremy was just born with an innate appreciation for the outdoors, so when we spent Sunday afternoon in the mountains I grabbed him for some one-on-one time to see what we could see.

Sidebar: Chuck and I joined the Smart Phone Club again with very limited service to the interwebs, which was intentional. The best part about upgrading my cell phone from a 1985 model is having the ability to take amazing photos.

Here are a few shots I took at the river with my little soon-to-be-ten-year-old explorer.

Mushroom Ring This big Azure Little fungi Grub Nature boy Shells Where the fairies live

The day Major was good.

This was not the day Major was good. Mr. Persistant

StuckBut on Mother’s Day, he was exceptional. It’s as if he knew he needed to keep Mama happy. We took him to the river and he was wonderfully behaved, even when we met another blue tick hound and all hell could’ve broken loose. Though he has more brown markings than Major, this eight-month-old was pretty much his twin. (Major is on the right side of the photo.)

Twins

Major even allowed Chuck to lead him into the water, which is what we were hoping for. HandsomeThe dog was calm and obedient and walked on his leash like a pro. Unfortunately, all that goodness was left at the river because he’s been a pain in my arse all morning running around like a nutcase. Every time I tackle him to the ground, I whisper into his floppy ears, “You’re getting snipped tomorrow, big boy, so enjoy this while you can.”

Mini-Hike

We knew the break in the rain was brief, so we took the short opportunity on Saturday to get outside and enjoy the unseasonable 70-degree weather. It was perfect, though a touch humid. (Humidity in January?) We found a very short paved trail that took us atop a beautiful overlook. Even though the hike was quite short, a certain six-year-old somebody barely made it. For as muscular as he is, the boy has the speed and endurance of a sloth.Path at Look Rock

Look Rock

Mossy moss

Hairy moss

the view

Landscape

Wiggle

Jeremy's Close Up

Boy and a stick

Home to Autumn

After a week in warm, sunny Florida, it was really nice to come home to autumn. East Tennessee is beautiful right now, so we decided to go for a drive through Cades Cove yesterday to see the fall colors.

(This first video is for Michele.)

[Song credit: The Decemberists, “January Hymn”]

Driving the scenic loop around Cades Cove gave us an opportunity to see animals like deer and wild turkeys, and the stable horses getting their exercise.

 

On our way home Chuck remarked that thousands of people have to drive hundreds of miles to come here, but not us. The Great Smoky Mountains are only 20 minutes away from our house. It’s a little dream come true.

Like Florida on our last night of vacation, Tennessee gave us a colorful “goodnight” on the way home.