Melanie also sent me the beautiful recycled (made of 9 plastic beverage bottles) shopping bag, very light to carry in my shoulder bag.
And there was more:
You may have seen the apple shaped tea mug coasters on Melanie's blog; it is nice to think she has a similar set. Almost like having tea with her! There was also a beautiful needle book made from her rest bits from the original Polka Dot Girls Block of the Week quilt. Very convenient, as I didn't have time to make the needlebook with the Stitchers' Angels Swap pattern. And that was not all (do I sound like the TV salesperson with the knife set?): she remembered our mushroom discussions and made me the pretty bookmark using a Japanese fabric with the cutest amanita toadstools! Thank you Melanie, this was so sweet of you!
Yesterday I was having another combined health and errands walk, carrying the camera, and I found this last example of Finnish wild berries, the wild strawberry, with a late blossom for the second time round. You can see the little white flower right in the middle of the picture, and you can click it larger. It is the Fragária vésca, the "meadow strawberry", small and very aromatic; the big cultivated strawberries are nothing compared with this. But they are not easy to find in big amounts like bilberries or even wild raspberries.
With the leaves almost all on the ground, you can see the ponds of our village better. There are many ponds here, as the brick industry has taken clay here for the bricks they made in the 19th and 20th century. This is a small pond right in the middle of the village. It was called "The Pharmacy's Pond", as the pharmacy used to be in the corner you can see behind the trees.
And this is our little beach by the school. This pond gets its water from a spring (in the others, ground water gathers in the pit), and it is a swimming place during the summer. During hot periods there will be algae and it can not be used. It is now called "The School's Pond" but was also known as Death Pit, because during past decades of time many people have drowned in it.
There are lots of wild ducks (Anas platyrhyncos) in all the ponds. They gather in the village when the hunt starts; they know where they can live in peace! Last week there were white swans here also, stopping to rest on their migration to open waters for the winter. The Cygnus cygnus was a threatened species in Finland some 60 years ago, but now they are left in peace. This straight-necked, beautiful swan has been chosen as the Finnish national bird. The writer Yrjö Kokko wrote a book about this swan in 1950 and changed the general opinion for the swans. If you happen to see a 1 euro coin with a pair of flying swans, it is a Finnish coin!
This picture of the third pond "The Laundry's Pond" was taken already in April, although the trees look just like that now, no leaves left in most of them. The birds swimming here are called goldeneye (Bucephala clangula), they nest there and I have seen them in the last weeks as well.
This may be my last post for a week, as we are going away early on Tuesday morning and will be back on Saturday next week. The trip will include super-interesting, loud machines on a fair, a stay with my sister Maija, and most of all quality time with DH, with nobody else to take care of, not even cooking, cleaning or laundry! The next days will most probably be spent with cleaning, laundry, ironing and packing, and just a little blog reading. Have a nice weekend and next week!