Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Two Rides

I'm behind on cycling posts this spring. Riding has become a bit of a struggle for me since last month's accident, and the reluctance to ride seems to be spilling over into reluctance to blog about riding. But things are getting better, both physically and mentally. I just need to keep at it....

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Two Sundays ago, I proudly wore my Team Snowcatcher jersey:

Each sleeve features a different image of one of Snowcatcher's crochet snowflakes. There are matching shorts (not pictured) which also have a unique snowflake image on each leg. I'm really looking forward to riding in style with Snowcatcher and the Lizard at this year's Bike MS*, where we'll all be wearing Team Snowcatcher gear.

My route led me through deep woods, at the edges of which grew masses of tiny white violets of a kind I'd never seen before:

The foliage was much larger than the violets that grow in our yard, and the blossoms were much smaller, about 1/2" across. Research suggests they may be Viola blanda - any ideas from my more learned wildflower-loving friends?

I passed a new-to-me barn. The end windows looked a bit like sleepy eyes:

We took a break under beautiful rustling aspens:

Tallulah consented to pose on the bike seat when break time was over:

Miles later, we stopped for a photo of a dandelion puffball (with glimpses of Wild Geranium in the background):

Down the hill is our egg supplier's house and barns, with windmill and silo:

Just a mile or two from home, we passed an Amish buggy driven by a young girl (you can see her black bonnet sticking up). I couldn't resist taking a photo from behind:

A hot and sticky ride, refreshed by breaks under shady trees, and full of all the small beauties of a Wisconsin spring.

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This past Sunday, the weather was much more pleasant: sunny, with a strong cool wind out of the northeast.

Golden Alexanders are blooming right now - a delightfully-named umbellifer, member of the carrot family, with an equally charming Latin name (Zizia Aurea) and tiny yellow blossoms:

A shot for Anne of andamento:

Also flowering thickly are Daisy Fleabane, a tiny, pale-pink aster that will bloom from now throughout the summer. Each blossom is about 1/2" to 3/4" wide:

White Yarrow has popped out in the last week:

And (in case you haven't seen enough wildflowers yet) the Swamp Buttercups (or possibly Meadow Buttercups) are flourishing along the woody sloping road above our egg supplier's farm:

The top of this road is delightfully overhung with trees both shady and blossoming:

Around the corner and up the next hill, I see the first wild roses on a north-facing bank:

A few miles later, this steer (?) watches impassively as I wheel by:

At the top of another hill, I stop for a break in an empty field. To my right is the road:

Ahead is the field (looking a bit dry and in need of rain):

Behind me all is cool and shady-green:

At my feet are ... my feet, and the shadow of a bike:

In my hand are some energy balls, my new favourite riding snack:

Energy balls: mix equal parts peanut butter and honey, with a bit of brown sugar (about ¼ the amount of honey used), and a few drops vanilla. Stir in dry rolled oats to make a thick mixture the consistency of cookie dough. Add chocolate chips, nuts, and raisins to taste. (Or anything else that takes your fancy.) Shape into balls and roll in unsweetened coconut to coat.

Pretty tasty:

Miles later, we see the moon rising in a deep-blue sky, over a white bank of cloud with green trees and fields below.

Another beautiful Sunday ride.

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*Speaking of Bike MS, there are only 2 ½ weeks to go! If you'd like to join me in the fight against Multiple Sclerosis, click here or on the button at the top right of the blog to make a donation. Every dollar goes straight to the National MS Society to help people with MS.

To read about last year's ride, click here.

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  1. You certainly have some beautiful country to ride through.

  2. I've enjoyed looking through your lovely pics of the countryside around and about, and all the colourful blooms - they're so lovely, especially the wild rose which really is a lovely colour! And of course it was so nice to see Tallulah enjoying a bike ride again and getting out in the fresh country air. Well done Sue for getting back on the bike and keeping on keeping on! xoJoy

  3. I need you here to help me identify the lovely wildflowers! And your bike rides are always so fun, especially since you are pedalling. ;) Hugs, Linda@Wetcreek Blog

  4. I love all your wildflowers and the sleepy eyes on the barn. But man, there's just something about that snazzy jersey... ;)

    1. PS: That's about the coolest header ever!!!!!!!!!!

  5. It's always nice to tag along for a bike ride with you and Miss T. :)

  6. Awwww You are getting there! The MS ride will get you totally back into it. You just have to make it until then.
    Love the sleepy eyed barn

  7. Nice pictures! I like the big barns, and countryside looks pretty.

  8. Lovely landscape, as always. :-)

  9. I like your outfit too, very fetching!

  10. Sue,
    My boys and I made your energy balls twice now and have really enjoyed them. A great snack when you are looking for something appealing and sweet-- they hit the spot!


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