The Effects of Hurricane Ian in the South Carolina Woods

All Photos by Debra Roinestad. Outer-bands from Hurricane Ian, (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

A pink glow radiated in the evening sky in South Carolina from Hurricane Ian, as it touched down in Florida on that frightful Thursday. The outer-bands of the storm hovered high over our cabin. The leaves on the trees had a fluorescent green glow from the pink clouds. The woods became eerily quiet as the birds and small woodland critters prepared for the storm. 

Outer-bands from Hurricane Ian, (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

Outer-bands from Hurricane Ian, (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

I hunkered down and nervously watched the weather forecast. The uncertainty of where the storm was headed in South Carolina was gut wrenching. On Friday, the storm had returned and pummeled the beaches of the South Carolina coast. The trees were bending from the strong wind gusts and there was a slight chill in the air. 

Colorful Sky on Friday Evening, (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

Saturday Morning, (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

The sun shyly peaked from the clouds on Saturday morning. Luckily, there was no damage in the area, just a few tree branches on the ground.

I’m deeply saddened by the destruction Hurricane Ian left in Florida and South Carolina.

Here are a list of reputable organizations that accepts donations for those severely impacted from the hurricane. (Click on the links below to access their website.)

FEMA

Red Cross

Global Giving

American Humane

Volunteer Florida

United Way

Salvation Army

Save The Children

World Central Kitchen

These disasters are a constant reminder to love and hug everyone around you and to appreciate the present moments. Things might change forever within the blink of an eye. Life is always uncertain. The only thing that is truly certain is what you hold dearly within your heart.

With Love and Gratitude,

Debra Roinestad

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Hummingbirds of South Carolina

All Photos by Debra Roinestad. Female Ruby-Throated Hummingbird (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

These majestic birds get their name from the humming noise their wings make in flight. Hummingbirds flap their wings 10 to more than 80 times per second. Here in South Carolina, we have four species of hummingbirds, the ruby-throated hummingbird, rufous hummingbird, black-chinned hummingbird, and calliope hummingbird. The most common one I have seen in my backyard is the ruby-throated hummingbird. The ruby-throated hummingbirds’ wings flap about 53 times a second. The males have ruby-red throats and the females have white throats. 

Female Ruby-Throated Hummingbird (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

Overall, research indicates that the hummingbird can fly 23 miles in one day. Hummingbirds are the only birds that can fly backward. They can see ultraviolet light plus RGB (Red, Green, and Blue) due to the fourth cone in their eyes. Hummingbirds can see red and green colors very well. Plus, hummingbirds can recognize humans that feed them and change the contents of their feeder. They are in desperate need of nectar in the fall season for energy to fly back to Mexico or Florida for the winter. A few remain in the winter along the coast. In the spring many of them fly over the Gulf of Mexico back to the U.S. in one non-stop flight. 

Female Ruby-Throated Hummingbird (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

Fun Facts About Hummingbirds

(c) Facts.net

If a hummingbird crosses your path, or visits your home, know that it is a blessing. Throughout history, hummingbirds have been associated to be a symbol of light and joy. 

Art & Design: Debra Roinestad (c) Comfy Cabin, 2022

Here is a free guide to help identify hummingbirds in your backyard from
The Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Click Here.

Trochilidae–Kolibris from Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Debra Roinestad
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Bear Steals Bucket From My Front Porch

Bucket Thief: Trail Camera, (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

Hello Friends,

A black bear stopped by my front porch and took an empty bucket with her. It was 5:12 am and she was extremely hungry. The bear has been looking for food and became desperate and stole the bucket from my front porch. Fortunately, one of our neighbor’s grapevines has ripened and the bear has been enjoying the delicious muscat grapes. (Note: The trail camera time was set wrong on the trail cam it’s 5:12 am not 5:12 pm)

Art by: Debra Roinestad (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

Bears enter hyperphagia and look for food up to 20 hours a day! They have definitely been more active in the back of the woods near our trail camera.

(c) KOAA 5 News: Bears Enter Hyperhagia

Enjoy the Trail Camera Videos!

Warm Wishes,

Debra & Kurt

Stolen Bucket from My Front Porch

Stolen Bucket: Black Bear Thief, (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022
(c) Montana FWP (Fish, Wildlife & Parks) Hyperphagia Explanation

Luckily, Kurt found the bucket the next day and retrieved it. The bucket is now damaged with a large hole from the bears enormous teeth.

Exhibit A: Stolen Bucket (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

More Bear Trail Cam Videos

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

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Coyote On Trail Cam At Night

Coyote: Trail Cam (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022
Image in the public domain, courtesy of WWF (World Wildlife Fund for Nature Inc.)

Hello Friends, 

Our trail cam captured footage of this coyote searching for food at night and exploring the back of the woods. Coyotes first appeared in South Carolina 30 years ago and continue to expand in numbers. In Autumn young pups leave their mother and search for food and territory. Coyotes prey on small animals such as rodents and rabbits. Their diet usually consists of small insects, berries, and fruit. Read more about coyotes here. And here.

Enjoy the trail cam videos!

Warm Wishes

Debra & Kurt

All Trail Cam Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Cam Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Cam Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Cam Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

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The Fascinating Opossum on Trail Camera

A misunderstood animal that is harmless and quite interesting is the opossum. Opossums are not aggressive and will run away if they encounter a threat or play dead. Opossums are resistant to venom and  prey on snakes such as copperheads and rattlesnakes. They can benefit your garden by consuming small insects such as beetles, slugs, and snails that damage gardens.

Kind Regards,

Debra & Kurt Roinestad

Opossum: Trail Camera, (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

Virginian Opossum (Didelphis Virginiana) from the viviparous quadrupeds of North America (1845) illustrated by John Woodhouse Audubon (1812-1862). Original from The New York Public Library.

More about the Opossum

(c) PBS Nature: Opossum Facts
Vintage illustration in the Public Domain

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Adorable Black Bears On Trail Camera

Adorable Black Bear: Trail Camera (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

September is a special time for black bears. The bears enter hyperphagia and look for food up to 20 hours a day! They have definitely been more active in the back of the woods near our trail camera. Read more about bears in September here.

Hope you have fun watching these trail camera videos.

Regards,

Debra & Kurt Roinestad

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

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Donald Duck & Humphrey Bear

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8 Magnificent Moths of South Carolina

Illustration: Butterflies and Moths (1596–1610) by Anselmus Boëtius de Boodt

Throughout time moths have been a symbol of rebirth and transformation. Although, some may have negative connotations with moths such as death and dying or simply having holes left inside your expensive sweaters. The moth is a reminder for us to lighten up and not to take life so seriously. The Hopi Tribe uses the moth as their power animal and displays this mystical insect in decorative pottery and dance costumes.

Photo: Hopi Cylindrical Jar by Grace Chapella
(c) Adobe Gallery: Art of the Southwest Indian

Since I moved to the woods in South Carolina, I have spent two years compiling photos of these magnificent moths that have briefly stopped by for a quick visit at my front door.

May the magic of the moth spark a light within you everywhere you go.

Warm Regards,
Debra Roinestad

Here are 8 Magnificent Moths of South Carolina

Anisota Moth (Orange-tipped oakworm moth)

They are found in the woodland and love to eat oak leaves. Both males and females are bright orange with a white spot on both sides of their wings. The white spots remind me of the ‘evil eye’ that symbolizes protection.


Clymene Moth

The clymene moth is rare and is thought to be a spiritual sign of a ‘blessing’ for those who come across this beauty. They are known for their gorgeous markings of the cross on their wings that extend inwards.

Imperial Moth

A lovely combination of yellow and brown. Its main purpose is to reproduce. This beautiful moth has a lifespan of one week because it doesn’t eat. 

More about the Imperial Moth.

Geometer Moth

Geometer moths are small to medium in size and have slender bodies. They are also known as the pepper and salt geometer or peppered moth because of the light and dark bands on their wings. The adult size range from small to medium.

Cossula Magnifica (Pecan Carpenterworm Moth)

When I saw this moth, I thought it was a piece of stick that got caught onto the front of the cabin after a rain storm. 😂 Their wingspan is 32-45mm and the markings have tiny black dashes with light grey wings. They eat wood and lay their eggs on the wood.

Azalea Sphinx (Sphinx Moth)

A very large moth with large chunky wings that can fly 12 mph. They are called sphinx moths because when resting their turtle-like heads retract and resemble the symbol of the sphinx. These moths need to raise their body temperature to 96 degrees F to fly.

Rosy Maple Moth

The rosy maple moth is known to be one of the most beautiful moths due to its vibrant pink and yellow colors. The females lay 10-30 eggs on the underside of the leaves. Their wingspan is 3.4-5.2 cm. These moths have thick and fuzzy bodies with long antennae that allow them to detect pheromones. Mating adults are looking for partners in the early summer through fall. In South Carolina, mating occurs in March-October.

Leopard Moth

I saw this one on my way to the local supermarket, Ingles. It was hiding on the white cement wall by the entrance. The leopard moth is recognized by its white wings and black spots. Their wingspan is 5.7-9.1 cm. The underside of the belly is a bright blue.

Here is a video displaying all the details of the leopard moth.
Moths In Flight.

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Crispy Kale Chips

Kale chips are crispy and crunchy, with bursts of rich flavor that will leave a potato chip lover satisfied and craving more. It’s a great salty snack. This simple recipe is made with fresh kale, olive oil, and salt. After the kale chips have been baked, add parmesan cheese for extra flavor. 

Jump to Recipe
Herb Stripper

I used an herb stripper for prepping the kale chips. The herb stripper saves time and is easy to use. You can find this helpful kitchen tool here.

(c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

Here are 10 Reasons to Eat Kale


Kale Chips (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022
Debra Roinestad

Crispy Kale Chips

The Comfy Cabin
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Side Dish

Ingredients
  

  • 1 bunch of kale
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • add salt to taste

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350° degrees.
  • Wash and dry kale. Chop or tear the kale leaves into 1" pieces. Make sure you chop away the stems.
  • Note: I used a herb stripper that removes the stems.
  • Place the kale into a bowl and add olive oil and salt. Toss and mix well.
  • On a baking sheet with parchment paper, lay the kale evenly. Sprinkle extra sea salt if desired.
  • Bake for 12-15 minutes or until the leaves are crunchy and slightly golden.
  • Remove from the oven and let them cool for 5 minutes.
Keyword Kale

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14 Awesome Wildlife Trail Camera Videos in South Carolina

Trail Camera (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022
Autumn: Table Rock Mountain, Photo by Debra Roinestad (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022
Autumn: Paris Mountain State Park, Photo by Debra Roinestad
(c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

Hello Friends,

The trail camera has been extremely active capturing coyotes, squirrels, bears, ravens, turkeys, and deer as autumn is quickly approaching. It’s time to gather food and build a cozy home for all the wildlife in the woods. Hibernation for the bears is in October. The hummingbirds are getting to ready migrate soon for warmer weather as they gather around looking for nectar in the woods. The deer and coyotes do not hibernate and remain active throughout the year.

Have fun with the assortment of videos!

Best Wishes,

Debra & Kurt

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

All Trail Camera Videos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022
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The Best Relaxing Place to Visit is Pretty Place in S.C.

Pretty Place (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

Pretty Place, the name that holds to its promise. The breathtaking views of the Southern Appalachian mountains at Pretty Place are stunning!  Many people have experienced a sense of solitude and comfort and leave refreshed after visiting this peaceful place. 

Southern Appalachian Mountains (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022
Diagram of the Southern Appalachian Mountains by Kurt Roinestad
WLTX 19 Pretty Place

The chapel was built in 1941 by Fred W. Symmes and is part of the YMCA Camp Greenville.

Outside: Pretty Place (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022
Sign at Entrance: Pretty Place (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022
Inside Pretty Place after descending the stairs (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

Pretty Place Chapel
Autumn: Pretty Place Chapel

Even though it was a cloudy day when I visited, I left with a sense of wholeness. A word of caution, check their website due to its popularity, the chapel is closed to the public for weddings and private events, and days and times are subject to change at any time. So, make sure you have a backup plan if the chapel is booked with an event. 

Leaving Pretty Place (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2022

Warm Wishes,

Debra Roinestad

Website for Pretty Place click here

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