Posted by: Small House Under a Big Sky Homestead | October 23, 2013

Seasonal Changes at White Oak Acres

I love each season for its own individual reasons but as we head into fall I am ready for the coming time of respite. Late fall to early winter is meditative to me. It’s a period of inactivity in the garden while the ground rests and recharges.

I love autumn because everything softens down, it is more quiet than summer and the beauty of our acreage is probably at its most beautiful in the fall. We give a lot of manual labor here to maintain our property and no time means more work than the autumn.  My husband Gene claims he spends more than 85 hours on leaf pickup chores and that does count the hours I work on leaves too. And leaves are only one facet of the work we do here.


Crooked Lake marsh in it’s fall finery this week.

But when that work is done, we are duly rewarded. We get to spend more time inside our cozy home on our comfy couch in front of the blazing fire, candles burning. It is time to read rest or watch a Netflix movie and cuddle time.

We also spend more time on a fall favorite activity, hiking and bird watching as the diving ducks are headed south and passing through our nearby natural area. We also hike to see the eagles nest in the backwaters of the Ottawa Marsh, a special autumn treat.

We feel blessed to live in a natural area with so many beautiful places to enjoy.

Yesterday, I visited a special natural area I informally call The Tall Grass Marsh. It’s technically the backwaters of Crooked Lake, and is a very unique marsh with no inlet and no outlet and is fed completely by rain and snow melt.  This means that this body of water changes with the amount of falling water that is available.


The stunning beauty of a Michigan woodland.

Several years ago this marsh was absolutely bone dry and I walked across it and sat on the grasses and read or doze in the sunshine with my dog. Not this year as the marsh is again under water.


Another view of the marsh under water and surrounded by the beautiful fall colors.

These places of natural beauty are one of the joys of rural living. I hope you get out to visit a beautiful site near you this fall. The winter snow is coming soon!

Small House / Big Sky Donna



  1. Wonderful to be looking forward to the slower days of Winter before the Spring comes round again. Lovely landscape.

  2. Thanks Bridget. Your post on your seasonal changes inspired me to do one as well! Hope you are warm with your great stove-I’m envious of that!

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