Creative juice on the rocks.

What gets your creative juices flowing?  Animals in their natural habitat?  The colors of Fall?  Mountains dressed in pines?  Woodlands? The starkness of desert?  For me, it’s the rugged beauty of Cape Cod. The outer, or lower, Cape to be precise. 

What is called the lower Cape is the “wrist and fist” of the arm that is the shape of the entire jut of land.  There is a question whether Cape Cod is a peninsula or an island.  Whatever it is, it is the fount of my creative juice. 

I didn’t think I would be able to make my annual autumnal trek to the Cape this year, but circumstances presented themselves for a quick trip after all.  A few days in paradise are better than none.

I soaked up the salty smells and the sounds of surf and gulls and brisk winds.  I combed beaches for the few treasures that bay and ocean offered up.  No fancy eye-catching shells, but beautiful little rocks of quartz and other colorful materials, wampum (the purple edges of Quahog shells), pieces of driftwood, and a rare piece of sea glass.  What I love most about the lower Cape is the rugged beauty.  The kind of beauty that is easily overlooked if not sought out.  Beauty that hasn’t been imposed, but allowed to just be.

I took some photos to share with you and to suggest design possibilities for me this coming year.  Below are also some of the hooked rug designs that were inspired by previous trips to the Cape.

If you’d like to read some great books about Cape Cod, here are some titles in my personal library:

The Outermost House by Henry Beston© 1928, 1949, 1956 1977 Henry Holt and Co.

Cape Cod by Henry David Thoreau ©1951 W.W. Norton and Co.

Traces of Thoreau by Stephen Mulloney © 1998 Northeastern University Press

Death of a Hornet by Robert Finch © 2000 Counterpoint Books

The House on Nauset Marsh by Wyman Richardson © 1947, 1948, 1949, 1950, 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954 The Atlantic Monthly Co. [several later editions published also]

There’s a lot of beauty out there and for the discerning eye on Cape Cod. 

A perfect sunset looking west toward Provincetown, MA.

A perfect sunset looking west toward Provincetown, MA.

Rosa Rugosa and rose hips on the beach path.

Rosa Rugosa and rose hips on the beach path.

Highland Light in Truro, MA.  Cape Cod's first lighthouse.

Highland Light in Truro, MA.  Cape Cod's first lighthouse.

Another view of Highland Light.

Another view of Highland Light.

Chatham Light is a working lighthouse in Chatham, MA.

Chatham Light is a working lighthouse in Chatham, MA.

Sandbars visible in Chatham Bay during low tide.

Sandbars visible in Chatham Bay during low tide.