We spent last week in my homeland of Minneapolis, witnessing the brilliant summer gardens in my parents’ yard fade into the drying flowers and brittle leaves of fall. A steady breeze drifted through screened doors and windows, carrying with it the unmistakable scent of Midwestern autumn, and the quality of afternoon light seemed to shift before our eyes—yet another confirmation of summer’s swift end.
In my next post, I’ll fill you in on my favorite activities around town. But first I'd like to share a few images from my parents’ place. Eight years ago, they moved one mile away from my childhood home, but this “new” house has already earned sentimental status in my book. It was this house—which feels like a tree house—that greeted my husband and both our daughters when I brought each of them to Minneapolis for the first time.
We joke that my parents’ plot of land and the narrow, adjacent swath of woods should be declared one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots. It teems with wildlife—great-horned owls, hawks, coyote, fox, deer, raccoon and on and on.
Above: Dragonfly silhouette.
Above: Moth on Autumn Joy sedum.
Below: Moss rose.
Below: This summer a wild turkey mother declared the area home, settling in to raise her nine babies. By the time we arrived, the babies had grown to adult size. The mother (below left) was identifiable only by her behavior; she was ever vigilant, neck high, eyes scanning for danger.
Cricket took immediately to the turkeys, spending much of each day searching for them. They never stuck around long once located...Cricket always shrieked with joy and sent them waddling off to the woods, herded by their mama.
Below: When not turkey hunting, Cricket enjoyed throwing rocks off what we refer to as the “romantic foot bridge” and skipping down the winding garden paths. (You can find Cricket's 21-month portraits, taken on this trip,
Below: Hosta along the front walk.
Above: Turtlehead flowers.
Below: Black-eyed susan.
Above: At first I was disappointed when this hawk swooped onto a branch next to the deck during Cricket's nap time, knowing she would have loved to watch it. But then I realized it was tearing a baby bunny to shreds, which made me glad my chica was snoozing.
Below: The same dragonfly that starred in the first photo above.
I'm Julia Soplop, writer and photographer. I believe there is something profound in bearing witness to moments of joy and pain in others’ lives. My husband, three girls and I live outside of Chapel Hill, NC. You can read more about me here.
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