clan of the crow

I swallowed a ladybug the other morning.

I guess they aren’t poisonous because I’m still alive.


Let’s run away together for a moment.

Let’s go to a place in our heart where there is goodness and kindness.

 Where there is wellbeing of mind, body and spirit.

A place where we can breathe. Continue reading

moon melancholy * aquarius season


A cold wind is blowing.

The treetops are swaying and my breath drifts off in white whispers.

The brown and gray landscaping is starting to take a toll on me.

And then that moon.

Continue reading

colored world

So, how was y’alls week?


We had a mixed bag of weather again this week, nothing major – enough snow to be pretty, then it went away.

Father Cottage had surgery this week, which he came through with flying colors.

Earlier in the week, That Cat and I took a little walk in the snow.

First Stop is to watch the fish swim under the ice.





Hello Mr. Owl, hope your head isn’t too cold.








My studio remains quiet and under pad-lock, but oh so lovely in a blanket of white.  Don’t you think?

The last of the logs were hauled away this week, clearing the way for the excavation to continue.

If the weather would only allow…

Here’s the thing.

I’m wrestling with my colored world.

When all the changes come about to our little cottage, you guys might be surprised to know

that Coral Cottage will no longer be.  I mean our cottage will no longer be coral colored.

You know I love color, so it won’t be colorless, I can assure you of that!

My domain name expires soon and so will this blog.

I’m not sure where that leaves us.

I’ve been pondering this for a long time, but the answer hasn’t come to me.

Whether I should continue to blog.

Should I continue to blog under a new name?

I’ve really come to enjoy the conversations that I have shared with my on-line blogging friends and don’t really want that to end.

Sigh.  I’ll continue to ponder.


Later today the super bowl will be played, and tomorrow is groundhog day.  Personally I’d rather watch a groundhog look for his shadow – just sayin’.

A little February folk-lore.

• February 2 is also Candlemas Day. It’s no accident that Groundhog Day and Candlemas are celebrated together, for both signify the triumph of light over darkness, spring over winter. In the Christian tradition, it is the day when a year’s supply of candles are blessed. See more about Candlemas.

• February 2 is 40 days after Christmas and is known as the Feast of the Purification among Christians. “February” was the month for cleansing, when yule greens were removed from homes and churches and old brush and debris were burned to prepare the fields for the next sowing.

• February 2 is exactly halfway between the winter solstice and the spring equinox, and the daylight is 1 hour and 2 minutes longer on this day than it was when winter began.

When is the spring equinox? See our First Day of Spring page here.

Oh, about those groundhogs: Expect 6 more weeks of winter either way!

I totally took all the above information from The Farmer’s Almanac.

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Christmas tree folklore

Mr. Cottage and I took a little ride over the river and through the woods.

We arrived at Foxfire Christmas tree farm.  They have been in business for thirty years.  Way back in the day Father Cottage was an advisor for the Virginia Christmas tree growers association and worked with this farm.


The owner supplies a saw and cart to haul the tree in and points us in the direction of the Douglas Firs, after confirming what type of tree we are after.

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Mr. Cottage watches as people claim the tree he thought was the one.

He kinda looked like a kid that had his toy taken away from him.

So off we go through the rows and rows of beautiful trees, but just not the right one.

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There were several people there with their dogs.

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When she was alive, we used to take our dog Cookout with us to get a tree.  She always picked the tree for us, it was the one that had a nest in it. How did that dog always know?

My heart felt a little twinge of those days past when I spied this nest.

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I’ve been longing for a puppy or two for a while.

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We find our tree.

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We head back to the barn to pay for our tree and enjoy some sights.

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This is our magnificent tree getting bundled up for transportation.

Many years ago before Mr. Cottage went into business for himself, he worked for the Virginia Department of Forestry.  Having both Father and Mr. Cottage working for the Forestry department, provided us with the access and the know-how; we entertained the idea of starting our own Christmas tree farm.

Recently while I’ve been re-imagining our life, I’ve entertained that thought again.

So while I keep my mind occupied with fantasies of puppies and growing Christmas trees, here is a tidbit of fun for you:

Christmas Tree Folklore*

This year over 37 million American families will celebrate the holidays with the fragrance and beauty of a real Christmas tree.

The tree, used as a symbol of life, is a tradition older than Christianity and not exclusive to any one religion. It’s a part of our holiday customs that engages not only our senses of sight, touch, and smell, but also our sense of tradition, hope and good will.

Long before there was a Christmas, Egyptians brought green palm branches into their homes on the shortest day of the year in December as a symbol of life’s triumph over death.

Romans adorned their homes with evergreens during Saturnalia, a winter festival in honor of Saturnus, their god of agriculture. Druid priests decorated oak trees with golden apples for their winter solstice festivities.

In the middle ages, the Paradise tree, an evergreen hung with red apples, was the symbol of the feast of Adam and Eve held on December 24th.

The first recorded reference to the Christmas tree dates back to the 16th century. In Strasbourg, Germany (now part of France), families both rich and poor decorated fir trees with colored paper, fruits and sweets. The retail Christmas tree lot also dates back that far – in those times, older women would sell trees harvested from nearby forests.

The tradition spread through Europe and was brought to the United States by German settlers and by Hessian mercenaries paid to fight in the Revolutionary War. In 1804 U.S. soldiers stationed at Fort Dearborn (now Chicago) hauled trees from surrounding woods to their barracks at Christmas.

The popularity of the Christmas tree then proliferated. Charles Minnegrode introduced the custom of decorating trees in Williamsburg, Virginia in 1842. In 1851, Mark Carr hauled two ox sleds loaded with trees from the Catskills to the streets of New York and opened the first retail lot in the United States.

Franklin Pierce, our 14th President, brought the Christmas tree tradition to the White House. In 1923, President Calvin Coolidge started the National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony now held every year on the White House lawn.

Since 1966, members of the National Christmas Tree Association have presented a beautiful, fresh Christmas tree to the President and first family. This tree is displayed each year in the Blue Room of the White House.*

Do you have a live tree or an artificial one?  If you have a live tree what is your favorite variety?

Mine has always been the Fraser Fir.

See you later, Bye!


* Source Virginia Christmas Tree Growers Association

walking the enchanted forest

The sun is bright and warm on this winter day.

My legs are gaining strength, my steps a little more sure.

My hand not so steady with the camera, yet there is progress.

That Cat suggested we take a walk together in the enchanted forest to look for buried treasure.

Out past the Gargoyle that doesn’t divert water; but chases away evil spirits.


Down the mossy path.

That Cat pauses to contemplate should we go left?


Or right?


A quick look back to make sure I am following.


We come upon the home of a wood troll.

 At first it appears to be vacant.


Then briefly we see the eyes of the troll peep out from inside.

 Just as quickly they are gone.


The mossy path is covered in Holly berries.



Follow the berries to the home of the fey.


Here is the spot where the forest spirits speak the loudest.


I hear the scurry of little feet, as they take refuge in the fallen tree.

Overhead a bird of prey makes their presences known.



A fallen tree is home to many types of moss.


Oh how I wish for a steady hand and my macro lens.



Deeper into the forest where the shadows are longer, a coating of ice remains on the drinking hole, where the wood nymphs gingerly cross.

We emerge from the shadows,  where we see a sparkling star shining in the sunlight.


In the cracks between slate oh so tiny mushrooms grow.




A single powder puff-ball of moss.

Ivy drapes down the trunk of a tree, where the fairies weave their way in out, leaving behind a trail of magic.


Angelic blessings abound.


A treasure is found.


Our walk in the Enchanted forest comes to an end.

We stop to rest on the bench.


Where That Cat watches the rapid approach of the white knight.


The magical journey in the enchanted forest is over, until next time.

See you later,



This post has been shared on the HomeAcre Hop

i heard an owl in the night

Hi Y’all – hope all you folks that celebrate Thanksgiving had a beautiful day full of love and happiness with someone special.

We changed our traditions this year, and it was a great day full of family and love.

What more could a person ask for.

A second day was spent with the other side of the family that was also pleasant and full of blessings.

We had a little cat emergency with That Cat on Thanksgiving and by the next day we knew he needed vet care.  I’m still not allowed to drive and Mr. Cottage had to leave for work early on Friday – long before the veterinary office was open.

Thank goodness that we can call our vet a very good friend.  A friend indeed, he offered to come and pick up That Cat and take him to the office and worked on him for us.

Thank you Dr. Sam.

That Cat is back home now, we are keeping a close eye on him, but I am suspicious, you know the way a mother’s intuition can be, that he may need to go back to the hospital for some follow-up care.

Keeping my fingers crossed.

Please put That Cat on your positive wishes list.


We have been stuffed to the gills with amazing turkey and ham and all the fixings, that other people have made for us.

But, I’ve really been wanting to do some cooking for myself.

Last night I fixed my first big meal in about 3 months.  I was completely exhausted by the time I was done cooking, but I managed to put in a good effort and eat a big helping.

I have physical therapists come out to the house and work with me a couple of days a week.

Today, I’m calling yesterdays session physical torture – I’m sore.

I also have a happy secret art project that I am working on and I can’t wait to share  with you, when the time is right.

Meanwhile, I guess there is hustle and bustle in the air for those that celebrate Christmas.

My favorite holiday.

Have you put up your Christmas tree yet?

If you love home-made gifts as much as I do pay Staci over at Life at Cobble Hill Farm a visit, she is doing a great series on just that very thing.

Wish I could keep up with all the greatness she is making.

Meanwhile I heard an owl singing in the night as I lay awake last night.

There is some folklore attached to that, which says it means death is imminent.

I choose to believe it was a song that I had been waiting to hear in my heart for something that is dear to me.

I have a thing for birds.

And that my friends, is what I have been up to here at Coral Cottage.

See you later, Bye!


what does the woolly bear say

I’ve heard woolly bear caterpillar winter weather predictions, for as long as I can remember.

I’ve heard tales like, the more black, the harder the winter will be, and if you see them crossing the road the winter will be hard.

Even if you don’t believe, I think there is something about folklore that just kinda warms the heart, don’t you think?

I have to admit though that until today, I never bothered to find out that woolly bears are  Pyrrharctia isabella (Isabella Moth)

I found this one moseying among the weeds in the pepper garden.


Look at those feet! – Okay I’m sure that isn’t the proper term.


The color is amazing

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According to The Farmers Almanac the weather predicting folklore of these beauties was made famous in 1948 by Dr. C.H. Curran.  Read more here.

Did you grow up hearing Wooly Bear Folklore?

See you later, Bye!