Tuesday, June 19, 2007
The above picture is from Silver Creek, near Sun Valley, Idaho. I helped lead a nature walk there a couple of weekends ago. What a beautiful place! The blue flowers are flax. One of the plants I got yesterday was a flax plant, just a little different shade of blue than this. I'm hoping I can recreate the right microclimate for this, because it's become one of my favorite flowers.
I hope everyone is having a wonderful summer - I know I am... :)
Sunday, April 29, 2007
I hadn't realized it was before Easter since I've written last. Lots going on around here - both inside and outside... Not quite time to plant all the seedlings I'm growing in my greenhouse, but yesterday I put 34 tomato plants in bigger pots, in anticipation of getting them outside in a few weeks.
In the meantime, here's what's been happening around here...
I went on a bird watching expedition last week - it's a place called Centennial Marsh about 80 miles north of here. Lots of birds and lots of pretty scenery...
An abandoned egg...
So pretty there - I didn't want to leave...
Next evening, (April 18th), we had a freak snow storm, with 45 mph winds. Yikes!
Hoover was NOT happy!
Lately my other dog, Hoops, has been jumping up on the picnic table and barking at something on the roof. I thought it was a squirrel. It wasn't.
It was this...
This is a chukar. Chukars are not supposed to live in urban back yards - even back yards next door to parks. According to my field guide, they live in "rocky, arid, mountainous areas of the west."
I don't know... he looks like he feels at home here...
Saturday, April 7, 2007
Imagine being confronted with a miracle… Here Mary Magdalene and the other women who followed Christ had come to see that their Teacher had been laid to rest properly, and to say a final goodbye. They thought everything was lost – until the angel appeared to them and told them the good news.
The Good News – that Jesus lives. He died for us and He rose again to give us hope of eternity. When all seems to be lost, we can remember this promise and be comforted, whatever comes.
When Mary Magdalene and the others heard that their Messiah lived, they ran to tell the other disciples, never doubting that what the angel said was true. What great joy must have been theirs that morning! What great joy is ours in sharing this miracle now!
Jesus, I dance for the joy of Your resurrection!
Saturday, March 31, 2007
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
This is the beginning of the trail – down below is the Snake River…
A view of the river from the other direction…
A bridge that doesn’t quite make it all the way across the river…
The trail twists and turns…
Some flowers in bloom along the trail…
Approaching a fork in the river…
The river fork, closer up…
End of the trail… there’s a gate across the road at this point, so you can’t go any farther… :(
It’s a lo-o-o-o-ng walk back up to the top…
Thursday, March 22, 2007
every day brings something new
to delight in:
the budding trees,
new life bursting through the earth,
birdsong from returning migrants...
even the sky seems a different blue,
and the gentle air is filled
with soft fragrance of green.
I am constantly distracted with the urge
to stop, and taste Spring as it rises…
Friday, March 16, 2007
Since St. Patrick's Day is tomorrow, I thought I'd share a picture I took on the grounds of St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin last summer....
...but the real reason for this post is I've been tagged by Marion to tell some reasons why I enjoy blogging. So here goes...
1. It's an outlet for some writing practice. I love to write, but I don't get a change to do it as much as I'd like. This blog gives a purpose, however small, for my writing.
2. Since I think blogging is just as much about reading other blogs as writing my own, another reason I enjoy it is the learning I've acquired from it. I've gotten some great recipes and gardening tips, as well as decorating ideas, from reading the information on other people's blogs.
3. I like the sense of community among bloggers. There is a great support system here - we share our lives and share ideas and become a sort of family.
4. Blogging makes me smile, and sometimes laugh out loud.
I'll think of other things later, and maybe I'll add them. For now, I'd like to share the fun by tagging Judy and Carol to tell what they enjoy most about blogging.
Have a festive St. Patrick's Day! Don't drink too much green beer... :)
Tuesday, March 6, 2007
Saturday, March 3, 2007
A LOT longer...
But today, my patience was rewarded - Carol's package finally came!
I opened it, and there was a postcard with a nice message from her.
And then the gift-wrapped little present - almost too pretty to open!
Friday, March 2, 2007
Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Like many places in the US, it's been snowing here in southern Idaho the past few days. Not a lot - but enough to be discouraging when one is itching to get out in the garden. I just got a big seed order from Territorial Seed on Monday, and I was looking forward to getting some seeds going in my indoor greenhouse.
I have a new lighting system for the greenhouse, too, so this morning I was fooling with it, trying to see where each fixture would hang to the best advantage. In winter, the greenhouse is home to all but my biggest houseplants. They seem to do very well in front of the patio window facing south - it's become quite the jungle in the past few months...
So anyway, I'm fiddling with this light fixture, when a flash of white caught my eye. I have a Christmas cactus on one of the shelves, a gift from a student several years ago. It was blooming when I got it, but it hasn't bloomed since. It had put on some new growth lately, which pleased me. I never expected blooming from it - but blooming is what I have!
A nice surprise on a wintry day...
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
This is my baby quilt. Right now it’s hanging over a rocking chair in my office. I can actually remember being covered by this quilt when I was a wee one.
These are patches from a “Sunbonnet Girls” quilt. My mother had one that was always on the spare bed in our house. It eventually wore out – but a few years ago, she made another one for me. The patches are made from old clothes I used to have, which she embroidered onto the backing.
This is a lap quilt made by my friend, Dee. It hangs on the back of my desk chair, and sometimes and wear it around me to keep me warm while I’m working.
This isn’t really a quilt picture, although there is a quilt in it. This is Hoover, my lab, in her favorite place to sit during the day. The quilt in the background isn’t old, but it covers a doll bed my grandfather made.
I like to think of patchwork quilts as a metaphor for life – colorful, sometimes worn, bits and pieces from all over, that together, make a beautiful whole…
Wednesday, February 14, 2007
I share my house with three critters: Hoover, a sweet lab/retriever cross; Hoops, a rather hyper, but equally sweet Brittany spaniel, and Hope, a young cat that was given to me by a student on the last day of school a couple of years ago. I feed them, and they let me live here.
Hoover is 12 years old, and mostly sits and looks regal, but the other two tease and chase each other all day long. I used to yell at Hoops because she’s bigger, and I thought she was just tormenting the cat to intimidate her. Lately, I’ve realized that the torment goes both ways. I was sitting on the couch reading, and Hope was perched on the coffee table in front of me. Hoops walked by and stood by the table, right next to the cat. Neither of them moved for a moment – in fact, Hoops was showing a great deal of restraint, I thought.
Then very slowly, Hope reached out and put her paw on Hoops’ head. Touch. No response. Then she did it again. Touch, touch… I could see Hoops trembling, but she still didn’t rise to the bait. Touch, tou…. And the race was on – back and forth down the hallway and around and over all the furniture, under the dining room table… Hope finally jumped up on the kitchen counter and then onto the fridge, and Hoops did a little tap dance down below.
They like to do this when I have company over, so everyone can see that I live with circus animals.
these two –
they chase and bite
and tease each other
all day long
my own personal
circus – start up
Yesterday morning I walked out in the kitchen and they were both lying in front of the patio door, almost on top of each other. They stayed that way for about an hour, until the sun moved beyond the door. Sort of like the lion lying down with the lamb, I thought…
Pets – you gotta love ‘em…
Friday, February 2, 2007
Sunday, January 28, 2007
"...miles to go before I sleep..."
This is my jubilee -
the beginning of the second,
better half of my life.
Let what small wisdom
I have gained to this point
guide my path.
Let me love more,
for all the beauty there is
in my world...
Monday, January 22, 2007
Yes, this cow is smiling… Let me tell you the story…
A couple of weeks after I came back from Ireland, I was talking with my brother about my trip. I told him one of the things that surprised me was how good all the dairy products were there. Cheese, yogurt, ice cream… I loved them all! I speculated that it all tasted so good because the cows there were so happy.
He scoffed at me, and I showed him one of the many pictures I’d taken of cows while I was there. Around here, most cows are penned up in feedlots in mass quantities, and do NOT look happy at all, so I was fascinated by all the contented bovines I saw in pastures all over the Emerald Isle. Looking at my pictures didn’t even convince him – he said, “Nope... I want to see TEETH on those cows before I’ll believe they’re happy!”
Later, I was showing some friends my Ireland scrapbook, and telling them what my brother had said. One friend offered to doctor the picture for me, and you can see the results. He did a good job, didn’t he?
I emailed this to my brother last night, but I haven’t heard back from him to find out what he thinks. Oh, by the way, here is the original picture:
Does this not look like the picture of contentment?
Tuesday, January 16, 2007
After reading about what others around the country are enduring, weather-wise, I realize that my whining about a little cold and wind is pretty self-absorbed. It’s barely half-way through January, for heaven’s sake! What should I expect?
There was a time when the weather outside wouldn’t have affected me much at all. Those were the days when I worked indoors all day, for someone else, and it was my occupation, and not the wind, that held me hostage within four walls. I didn’t have time to revel in the changing seasons at close range – just watched them pass through a window, or while driving to get from point A to point B.
Now I work for myself, and my time is (mostly) my own. I guess what I have is a bad case of cabin fever. I want to ride my bike somewhere! I want to get my hands in the dirt and plant something! But it’s currently 14 degrees with a 20 MPH wind – so I’ll set those longings aside and be happy with what is. I have a free afternoon with all sorts of possibilities at hand, and I don’t want to waste it…
Thursday, January 11, 2007
Tuesday, January 9, 2007
Saturday, January 6, 2007
As I write this, a few lazy snowflakes are falling. Five minutes ago, I could barely see across the street – five minutes from now, it could be the same. Just now, though, the sun is trying to shine…
That’s Idaho in winter (or any other time of year) for you – if you don’t like the weather, wait a minute.
I was reading a reflection this morning on a website I visit regularly, written by a priest in County Cork, Ireland. In it, he lamented the fact that just as everyone is putting all their Christmas decorations away, the feast of Epiphany is upon us – the time the Christian church celebrates the coming of the Magi to the Christ Child. Sort of like showing up at a big party just as everyone’s leaving…
I haven’t put away my Christmas things yet. I got a late start on decorating this holiday season, because the first half of the month I spent every spare moment I wasn’t working studying for a big Latin exam. I took the test on December 12th, and it was only after that I started preparing for the season in earnest.
Then, too, I have had many things to celebrate lately – and the festive air around me here reflects my mood: the lights, the candles, the spangles I don’t have up any other time of year.
So for a couple more days, it will still be the Christmas season here for me. I will wait, and journey with the Wise Men – rejoicing all the way…
Friday, January 5, 2007
Thursday, January 4, 2007
the sea goes on forever
gray sky and dark water
meet on the horizon
gulls turn and cry
overhead – adding their music
to the waves crashing below
I watch, and listen,
and feel I've been here before,
if only in dreams – standing
on the shore of forever
there is only the sky
and the infinite sea
Tuesday, January 2, 2007
Picture of Caedmon's Cross - taken at Whitby, England
I've heard it said that whatever you spend New Year's Day doing, you're likely to continue doing all through the coming year. Since I spent the day visiting with several friends, I hope it means that my year will be filled with lots of camaraderie and good conversation! I also managed to eat an inordinate amount of pie... so I'll have to take care that future pie encounters don't cause me to lose all self-control!
Caedmon was the first Christian poet to write in English (although it was Old English, so difficult to read). He lived during the last part of the 7th century in Whitby, England. Caedmon loved to hear stories told, but he was terrified of being in the spotlight himself - until a miracle occurred, and he began to write beautiful poetry in praise of God. Someday I'll write his complete story...
I've always felt an affinity with him, because I'm not fond of getting in front of people and talking, either...
Like Caedmon, I stand back
and let the light fall
on others – myself,
I’d rather retreat into the shadows
to rest with mute beasts.
but no expectations, either.
Will an angel come down
and tell me my place?
What shall I say
if he tells me I must speak?