We decide to take a hike in the woods with our favorite homeschooling friends while Papa does more research at the Western Reserve Historical Society. Due to a Quilting Show at the Nature Center, a woman passed out bags of candy to my friend and I's children without asking our permission. Bastian ate two lollipops consecutively and we had to talk at length about littering because he tried to throw the used sticks on the ground. I carried lots of wrappers in my back pocket during our walk.
Aleks and Jonas hid from giants by the upturned roots of trees growing too close to the marsh.
The marsh is much quieter in fall than in spring and summer. We often see (and hear) big bullfrogs and once we saw a group of muskrats eating watercress here.
Bastian runs far ahead.
We all noticed the way the tree roots cling to the face of the cliff, half-exposed on the outer side.
The kids, all hopped up on candy.
After lots of posing for photos, they walk off down the wall.
Our kids were not the only ones with illegal treat bags. Candy corn litters the pathway as though Hansel and Gretel had been this way previous to our passing.
Aleks carries his treat bag on a stick like a hobo.
We convince the kids to look for different colors and shapes of leaves.
Though the forest floor is littered with fallen leaves to the point of being carpeted, we only really seem to find oak, maple, and ash. Ultimately, the kids have little interest, but still I wind up with a bunch of bruised leaves in my purse.
We pose for a group photo. Anna always has her eyes closed in pictures.
At the topmost point of the ridge is a series of three Indian mounds, covered in moss. The point is so breathtaking, it is no wonder anyone would deem it holy ground, fit for spiritual practice.
The point overlooks Rocky River itself.
Aleks asks if we can see the big fish that we see during high waters in the spring and summer.
Bastian tries to climb through the fence.
The autumn colors are really starting to show.
The centuries of erosion are evident in the cliff face.
Bastian runs off on his own again, stopping only to watch some joggers pass by.
The kids note some fungus growing on the side of a tree.
On the way down the immensely long staircase, we spot an injured bumblebee.
Fascinated, everyone watches for awhile.
The bee eventually makes his way to the edge of the staircase to avoid further squashing.
Afterwards, we go to a pumpkin patch to stock up on decorative squash and gourds for our Harry Potter Halloween Party.
The boys run all over, piling lots of little pumpkins and gourds into our wagon.
Bastian pretends to be a monster and gets a ride back to the car with our purchases.
Aleks stands in front of long rows of bell peppers.
He points to a bird flying from the brush. I think it's a pheasant.
Aleks helps push the wagon back to the car.