LITTLE BLUFF JOURNAL - DECEMBER 2021 (previous months)


Little Bluff cabin cam December 31- GALLERY IS OPEN TODAY 10-3 (mask required)


(*the GALLERY will be OPEN Friday and Saturday, Dec.. 31st and Jan. 1st, 10am-3pm - prices go UP 10% beginning Sunday)

***FYI, our distributer reports there are less than two cases our 2022 wall calendars left in stock - if you want one you better order soon - CLICK HERE FOR UA Press Calendar Order Page


Print of the Week special (above)


Journal UPDATED on the 30th

12/01/21 An epic sunrise lasted for more than 30 minutes - actually all the color happened before sunrise - by the time the sun would have arrived all the color had drained away leaving only gray clouds and no sunshine. The clouds moved on an hour later and bright sunshine flooded the landscape - another warm and beautiful early-winter day today! December is gonna be a great month...


12/13/21 Since today is Tayler Swift's b-day, I will answer my own question as so why I've not written anything here lately with a qouote from her - "In my defense, I have none..." But my goal this week IS to write and fill in a few blanks starting sometime later today - thanks for checking in!

But for now, note that I plan to have the canvas gallery open again this saturday the 18th (full moon rising) from 10am-3pm.

12/16/21 When you see a debris pattern like this on a driveway it is an indication that a HEAVY downpour has happened recently - this is the drive right outside the gallery this morning, and I was in the woods hiking to work when the downpour hit - I LOVE hiking in the rain, although now the print room smells like WET dog! (most of it got soaked up or ran off quickly - didn't add much to waterfalls, which are running very low right now, if at all)


12/25/21 We had a very quiet Christmas day alone at the cabin - but things picked up a bit as darkness arrived...


We had a lovely time with Pam's parents roasting hot dogs over the campfire with Pam's Park all lit up - AND Pam's mom made a very special PIE that is going to have a brand new waterfall named after it - CHOCOLATE POSSUM PIE! It was DELICIOUS!!! (she also left me an entire can of homemade CHOCOLATE BALLS - and I consumed ALL of them within two days - YIKES!)


12/27/21 Moss highway across a sandstone ledge - gotta to get down on your knees to see it though.


12/29/21 Last night was clear and crisp with starry skies. The moon isn’t rising until later right now so I have slowed down a bit as I make a nightly trip up the road - mostly to round out the circle on my exercise watch dial, but also because a certain dog or two insists on a nightly romp - and I’m always happy to comply.

The winter night sky is dominated by a group of stars known as Orion, The Hunter, which right now hangs directly above the cabin. Just like one of those giant full moonrises, this particular constellation seems really large when it first rises above the horizon early in the fall, but seems smaller as it climbs higher. But right now with the cabin for reference it once again looms large. I.E. things will look larger or smaller depending on if they are close to another object. I like to stand next to big trees when having my picture taken - makes me look thinner and more athletic, haha.

High winds of recent days have blown away and it was near total silence as I moved slowly through the forest, being careful not to run head-on into one of the big pine trees we have here. I stop once in a while and lean back against one of them so I can study all those stars - so peaceful and soul-filling. That is until MIA runs up and jumps on my knees with “let’s GO MAN!!!” I have no idea where she wants to go but she’s the boss, so...

Mia is also quite persistent at dawn, usually running through the cabin and out the dog door into the front yard, where she sits in an open area and stars at me - sometimes for 10, 15, even 20 minutes while I sip my coffee or gulp my smoothie. She almost never gives up until I get dressed and head out the door - they she looks carefully for any gesture by me to know which direction we’re headed to - trail left (good), trail right (GREAT), or straight ahead (bummer). I wave to the right and she is thrilled (that’s the longest trail route to the office), and she tears off and disappears into the woods.

We had just a few sprinkles just before our morning hike and oh my did it transform the usually-dull winter landscape into beautiful, saturated COLOR! Especially GREEN - every boulder, stone, or dead branch that had moss growing turned neon green and oh so LUSH! (cell phone snapshot don’t quite capture it, but here are a couple of examples)



Seems like I smile a lot more when hiking through a lush forest just after (or during) a winter rain event (or in this case, just a layer of sprinkles). Even the forest floor layer of deep brown leaves seemed colorful. Highly recommend hiking in or after rain - the earth has such a wonderful aroma too!

Speaking of morning coffee, I’ve cut my consumption by 1/3 after seeing coffee listed on every single list of things that are bad for your health. I’ve always hated the TASTE of coffee but always LOVED the aroma. It wasn’t until k-cup machines and French vanilla coffemate arrived that I ever even considered a cup of coffee to start the day - now I can hardly imagine without them. During my trip to Iceland many moons ago I realized most of the world uses very small cups for coffee and tea - not the GIANT bowls we often use here in the USA. I much prefer the small cups, and that’s my standard - about a half cup is plenty for me (4 ounces). I got into three a day - almost like my favorite drink growing up - Dr. Pepper, with the 10 -2 -4 on the bottle (marketing to get you to drink three bottles a day).

Anyway, when we moved into Little Bluff our refrigerator had a k-cup machine built right into the door and it was so easy to simply push a button in the dark as I stumbled from the bedroom to the bathroom early each morning. Then it broke and I started using one of our original k-cup machines. That took a little more work because I had to measure out about 5 ounces of water and pour into the machine before it would brew.

Later on I got feeling bad about all those k-cups going into land fills, so I started to tear off the top after brewing and collect the used grounds and spread them on Pam’s garden, then recycle the plastic cup. That got to be a pain and oh my goodness there was so much coffee grounds at the end of the week!

Then we got a package of fresh-ground premium caramel coffee (THANK YOU!). Oh goodness, I could never use that (I’m not a flavored coffee fan - all I need is FRENCH VANILLA COFFEEMATE, that’s my coffee flavor!) Then I remembered I’d bought one of the reusable k-cups (that would not work in our built-in k-cup maker) so I tried a scoop of the carmel coffee. MUCH to my surprise I LOVE it!!! But it takes a lot more work and concentration in the dark as I’m stumbling from dead sleep, but what I discovered was that the extra steps it takes to brew a half cup of ground coffee vs. just popping in a k-cup somehow wakes me up and gets me up to mental speed much quicker than before - in fact I probably could do without the 1/2 cup of coffee altogether. Since I’m down to just two 1/2 cups a day now I wondered about that, but realized I still NEEDED the coffeemate!


12/30/21 Saw a live tick yesterday. Hum. I wonder if he knows the temp is supposed to be 50 degrees colder day after tomorrow?

My lovely bride and I were hiking back to the cabin when we ran right into a thick fog cloud that turned the forest into a magical mystery tour - it was quite WEIRD, and BEAUTIFUL! And totally unexpected. We’d had a bit of rainfall in the morning, and mostly cloudy all day. Then all of a sudden, BOOM. The fog moved around with each step as we progressed along the trail, opening up more or less of the surrounding landscape. It was very quiet, calm (funny how in the woods fog can be perfectly still while it’s actually moving - part of the magic and mystery of such things).

Then within literally just a few seconds the fog was gone and bright sunshine lit up everything around us - POOF, just like that! The really weird thing was that the fog didn’t really “lift” like it normally does, it simply vanished into thin air!

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