Crows & Scarecrows, Pumps & Pumpkins

title page

  NOTE: Trying a rhyme scheme I’ve never attempted: abaca.  Very odd!


I, as the Oz-man said, 
I am the one
With straw in my head
I, the unusual,
Not the autumn leaf dead.

So many scarecrows I've made
The couple with flowers
There in the shade
Of the autumn leaf dying
Though memories shan't fade:
This year at Blue Belldon, see-
The Skinny Scarecrow 
And partner made three
(the third on the porch)
As students jump the melee!


And though they aren't crows
But rather are starlings
The blackbirds in rows
Along in our garden
Don't seem in much fearful throes.


And for Thanksgiving week-end
The primitive crows
Made by a rustic shop friend
Filled out the basket
And fit in to the blend

Of autumnal decor
Of a long season done
Of harvest now o'er
When family has joined
And request always "More"?


Not "Nevermore" as says the raven
But just one word: 'more?', 
As 'tis our food they're cravin' !
(And for a week, Mom and I
In the kitchens were slavin' ! )

That weekend was bright
And ever so mild
There were lads to play-fight
And scamp through the trees-
A heart-warming sight!


And back in on the hutch
More primitive stuff
Some pumpkins and such
With white poppies in bloom
-Oh the bounty was much!



And from garden's top
In the pumpkin patch
We chose all the crop
Placed on display
Like a proper farm shop.




Except for just two
That were lovely and ripe.
Mom made crust new
And the pie-fill from scratch
Organically true~



And any pumpkins past prime
(Or the bits dug out)
The hens got, in time
When the guests had all left,
And the rest of the rhyme...

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA instead about pumps
With no suffix of 'kin'
Because the sunset humps
O'er the mountains like fire
Then the auburn light jumps:





And a rainbow finds gold
As sure as the luck
Will ne'er run old
As sure as the season
Was ne'er seen so bold.


For though Richard eats pie
Til there's no pumpkin left
To cast All Hallow's die
And the autumn is done...
"Give Thanks!", we reply!


For though the bright is in fade
And there's bleak days ahead
We find that in trade
Is a time of sweet rest
"Give Thanks!" is re-played.

The garden is bare,
The leaves have all fallen-
But we mustn't show care
As the harvest had bounty!
"Brave Winter" we dare!




So, with just one more glance
At the bright orange sea
With no photo-enhance
Farewell we all wave
---NOW bring on Winter's TRANCE!

chevy, autumn, richard, cammie


The Biggest Blue Belldon Day… of 2018

Well, you’ve been treated to tidbits, both here and on Facebook, but Tiffany Christensen, our local New Denmark born-and-raised young photographer (see her work in other blog posts using tag words such as the pageant, founders day, etc.) has processed and published her huge album of Richard’s niece Carriann’s and groom Matthieu LeBlanc’s big day here on the farm on July 28th. So, as promised, that’s mostly what this posting is about.  If you aren’t interested in the family connections or the homemade decor or the Tolkien tid-bits,  skip to the bottom to see more of Tiffany’s work – but seasonal this time! She takes great autumnal shots, some from right here at the farm and some OF the farm from a distance! Lovely! And, as mentioned previously, the next post will be Crows and Scarecrows, and the one after that will be all about Richard’s new greenhouse by the garden – all made with recycled windows and old tin from my cabin. He’s almost finished it, just in time for the cold weather… But for now, enjoy the beauty of this special day when our farm was shared by many.


As early as mid-2017, Carriann and Matthieu, from 3 hours south of us in Saint John, approached us about a farm wedding. They wanted a beautiful vista, just as her Aunt Kim had had at her wedding in Quebec the year prior.  Carriann, ever tactful, posed the question something like this:  “We were wondering if you guys know of any place up your way that has some gorgeous views where we might get married in 2018? ”  So, of course, we offered to help in any way we could and offered the farm as a base if they wanted it.  We agreed, wisely I believe, that having tents and the reception here as well would have been too much, so the reception was up the road at the New Denmark Rec. Centre (which has been pictured for you in other blog postings – a real country venue with original stage and hardwood floors, with a gorgeous vista of its own!)

Since Rustic Revivals and Rural Revivals (my two artistic and consulting businesses) have done a number of farm weddings, I offered, as far back as March 2018, to begin making Carriann and Matt’s (heretofore referred to as C and M) choices of items mostly made with their colours: lilac to dark purple and lime green.  (a note: while the couple would have preferred to have had the wedding in June, when our lilacs would have been out in matching splendor as well as the white apple blossoms on the trees under which we walked, we knew the blackflies would have been just too horrendous in that month to have had people sitting out in the orchard (the worst spot on the farm for them). So a year ago it was decided that the wedding should take place in July, near the end, when all the planting would be done and to have given flowers a chance to be blooming. Sadly, as it turned out, it was such a hot, dry summer that not much HAD bloomed (and didn’t until Sept! See last post, Purple Haze!)  And the only day in 3 months that it DID threaten to rain (90 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms all day!) WAS the day of the wedding, but due to a lot of praying and pleading, it was a lovely temperate day with just the right amount of breeze blowing across the valley to keep the insects and heat to a minimum and yet not to topple anything precarious…  Click on any photo to enlarge and read caption:

Tiffany took some much better photos of some of the decor around the farm. Comments regarding each are underneath:

At the last minute, I threw some lime green paint on this old frame I had as part of my Rustic Revivals’ hoard. So glad I did, as I LOVE this photo!


You have followed in an earlier blog the many long hours Richard put in, in hot sun, tearing off the metal from the cabin that will soon become my shop. I varnished the trim and painted some purple and green accessories on just for the wedding, as well as planting the flower boxes with some overhanging purple thyme and white baby’s breath from the garden. We knew it would make a great feature for the professional shots and Tiffany used it brilliantly!
bride, groom, hobbit hole
the Hobbit Holee door and window fit so well into the grassy knoll, and this tilted brilliance on Tiffany’s part really made it seem more surreal and magical. The shot below is just an impulsive one of the 4 of us.


While Mom wasn’t at this wedding, having gone to Ontario to give up her upstairs suite for the wedding visitors who were with us for nearly a week to help get the farm looking ship-shape, her presence was felt in the flowers she’d bought and helped plant and water and weed, and in, for example, this purple woven mat of hers that we used to cover the chair
My great-grandmother Lipsit’s tablecloths were on a number of accessory tables for this wedding, but I had some other paperweights laid aside for use on the outdoor tables. Not until Tiffany’s photos came out ten days ago did I realize that Richard had grabbed a crowbar when Pastor Ralph asked for a weight!
Carriann’s brother, Richard’s nephew, Chris has been physically and mentally challenged his whole life, but is an accomplished musician and now can add being Lord of the Rings (ringbearer) to his sister’s slightly Tolkien-themed wedding!
as seen in earlier blogs, we set up a water fountain with some wild animal representation to add some more purple in case all the purple flowers weren’t yet in bloom (which they weren’t). It was meant to collect some loose change for the couple, with people making wishes for them, but as so many of the guests were French I don’t think anyone bothered to read my signs! Still, the purple accents helped with the colour!
Love this photo of Tiffany’s, just showing a close-up glimpse of the couple’s colour choices. Richard actually picked this floral arrangement himself, based on the lime green leaves in the centre. We had to keep it carefully watered for over a month to keep it looking like that in the dry heat! Those are bed sheets on barrels for snacks in the background. ALWAYS upcycling!
another shot I personally appreciate from Tiffany, since I planned hard to offer healthy farm-type snacks but still keep them in the colour theme! Love the wagon wheel in the background, too – Tiff has such a great eye!

Some more of the purple and green recycled, upcycled, homemade or all-natural decor – remember to click on any photo you want to read the caption/make the photo bigger!


remember to click on any photo you want to read the caption/make the photo bigger!

Saturday Morning -The Big Day – Thunderstorms in the Forecast, but …

the decorating and tidying work continues! ALL the bridal party and parents pitching in…remember to click on any photo you want to read the caption/make the photo bigger!


These are now mostly Tiffany Christensen’s gorgeous photos, which I’ll let mostly speak for themselves. A few others (not marked with Tiff’s fun logo in the left corner) were taken by the two aunts -either myself or Carriann’s mother’s sister, her Aunt Kim, whose dress she was also wearing – so even more along the upcycle/recycle theme I always love here at Blue Belldon!!   Most of these have captions to explain, and are primarily in the order in which they took place:

patti and carriann2
Step-Mom Patti-Lynne at work on hair and make-up for the bride
patti and carriann
a final touch-up
father and son
Father of the Bride, Jean-Marc (Richard’s brother) ties the rings to Chris’s recycled pillow
for Tiffany
professional photographer Tiffany Christensen prepares for the work ahead with a quiet chat with bride Carriann on our side porch
for those that know our orchard, this is the arm of the white bench overlooking the rock garden and the lovely view (between the two apple trees) where Tiffany wisely thought to place the rings for a neat shot
Carriann’s Aunt Kim, who took many of these shots not marked with Tiff’s logo, helps her niece with her shoes
bridesmaids get ready, in front of our big bedroom mirror put in front of the fireplace
bridesmaids ready!
Pastor Ralph is ready – trying to calm the wind?
The groom had his own special walk down the aisle – to a Lord of the Rings orchestral piece, of course!
Carriann’s brother, Richard’s nephew, Chris has been physically and mentally challenged his whole life, but is an accomplished musician and now can add being Lord of the Rings (ringbearer) to his sister’s slightly Tolkien-themed wedding!
The groomsmen make their decent through the two natural arches of the apple tree
adore this shot of Tiffany’s – very artsy!
Tia the flower girl begins to throw the rose petals
Father and Daughter begin their journey
flower girl
This is a shot by Aunt Kim – love how you can see the natural arch that the bride and father are just about to go through
br and father under arch


parking and guests


C and M wanted the scenery, the birch arch, the rose petals strewn and the bubbles being blown behind – here are all 4 desires shown together!


Carriann, with Richard’s Mom (her Grandmere) Helene
this is Richard’s favourite photo – he is in the background talking to his two sons, whilst his brother looks like he’d rather be talking about cars back with them!
the whole gang
Richard’s father, Hans, and his wife Betty with the happy couple
with the parents, Vince, Yvonne, and their son Matthieu, Carriann and her father Jean-Marc and her step-mom Patti-Lynn (also the official make-up artist, and videographer!
the couple with Richard’s two very-much Torontonian sons!
tiffany organizing
Tiffany tries to organize the shot she took prior to this one!


robin in wedding

The photo below needs some explanation – the groomsmen, the happy couple and myself all jumped on our truck for Richard to drive us down to the grassy knoll for photos of the Hobbit Hole.  As I was on the tail gate, Richard seemed to forget that I had had 3 back surgeries and was on the waiting list for knee surgery and thought it very funny to drive like a maniac all over our field and track. So I had to lean back to try and keep balance. Tiffany, who was behind me, thought this very amusing, apparently!


And a few from the reception at the New Denmark Rec Centre: (photo credits to all and sundry, but the really exceptional ones are by Kim Mageau and Patti-Lynne Reich)



richard, sons and girlfriends
Richard’s son Erich and his girlfriend Fran, from Toronto on left, Carriann’s other grandmere from Quebec in centre, and Richard’s son Nigel, with girlfriend Deeanna on right
richard and family
Richard’s dad Hans, brother (father-of-the-bride) Jean Marc, Richard, his step-mom Betty (she and Hans drove from Kingston, ON!) and mom Helene (also from Saint John)
richard and mom dancing
Richard dancing with his Mom in an almost empty hall – the two tables behind them weren’t used as SOMEONE miscounted the number of guests on the groom’s side… either that or my big scary Tolkien giant hanging from the door scared everyone away!)  But the dancing got sillier and much more popular later. I won’t post any of those!
head table
the head table and C and M’s special table above on the stage
Some who have followed the renovations here at Blue Belldon may remember this wicker arch (which normally has shelves!) which is in our bedroom and which I picked up by the side of the road in Ontario because someone was just sick of it! We have certainly had a great deal of use from this freebie as it was once in our Rural Creators’ Collective shop in Carlisle ON too!
Nigel and Deanna – though they have NO PLANS to marry, Nigel caught the garter and Deanna caught the bouquet. Hmmm.
The gents lining up to catch the flying garter
Richard, Carriann trying to get her cousin Erich to dance


specialsA close up of the lime-green mint jelly of which I put ONE  on each table for sampling with the meal, along with the entertaining cards about old-fashioned marriages (just happened to be purple and green cards, so why not?) Jean-Marc and Patti-Lynne followed the eco-friendly theme of the farm and had organic seeds done up as table favours – highly suggest to all!

richard with chris
Love this shot of Richard and his nephew Chris (Lord of the Rings!)  in deep conversation
father daughter dance
Photo of Dad and Daughter – lovely shot!

And now, as promised – or in case you didn’t want to look at the beautiful photos of the wedding previously, here’s some seasonal and autumnal shots from lens-master Tiffany, to get you back in a fall mood…

blue belldon farm and views
The red tree to right is the only non-birch tree in our birch grove on Blue Belldon. This is our view every day – aren’t we lucky?
going down Lucy's Gulch
Going down the steep Lucy’s Gulch, with the Saint John River below and Grand Falls, and Limestone Maine beyond in distance
our farm from Blue Bell mountain
Tiffany took this of our farm from the top of Blue Bell Mountain, across the valley. That’s us right in the middle!
tractor, new denmark
a New Denmark tractor preparing the harvest of potatoes and other crops
train tracks
the lush colours of New Denmark
two churches by night
Tiffany grabbed this one night of our two churches on the hill – I think she needs to enter it in a contest or have it made into a poster for some religious event, don’t you?
two churches
The two churches from closer to our farm


See you next time, for “Crows and Scarecrows”…