Monday, December 10, 2007

Reflections . . . .

On a 61st birthday sunrise (shared with Mom)

Birthday reflections on Mom's cruet collection

I've been reflecting on my amazing mother. (Here, filling her bird feeders)

On the fact of Primrose blooming on the last day of Novemember

On the lovely grace of a niece. On the love of a merry husband.

On the strength of character and caring - of a nephew.

On the gift of a precious brother. (His 60th)

On the joy of celebrations.

On the magic of light and love during the days of solstice waiting. (The tree is from the Botanic Garden compost pile :0)

I've missed dropping in on you all. I know you know how life throws curves when you want to follow a preferred trajectory. It's all about bending with the breezes, right? My blogging has borne the brunt of the season's turnings.

Merry Christmas and warmest wishes for happiness and health in the New Year.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Do You Hear What I Hear?

Gentlemen (women:0) Start your engines.

My Hubby and neighbor who's behind the bush in the upper right-hand corner (dang! I should know his name) - engaging the enemy.

Our neighbor, Irv. Yep. Leaf blowing.

I only glimpse Deb a few times a year through the hemlocks. She's chasing leaves, too.

I say a little prayer when our neighbor, Rick, gets on that danged roof.

I think I heard next years leaf buds sniggering at the futility of our efforts.

Do you hear it? I did. Even with ear protection: Sniggering.
BTW - that's a buckeye necklace. Big game day :0)

Thirty years ago we moved into a development called Lincoln WOODS. We'd lived in Denver during the first part of our marriage. There weren't many trees and heck - those prairie/foothill winds made short work of leaf-blowing.

Well. The friendly shade-providing trees around our Midwestern home are now 30 years older and bigger and leafier. My hubby and I are also 30 years older, bigger and . . . . well, bigger.

The trees seem to be doing fine. In fact I think I hear them sniggering up there as they watch us mortals cleaning up the shavings from the floor beneath their summer's work bench. Listen. Do you hear it?

Here's a great Robert Frost poem about leaf raking. At the literal level - it records something of the nature of the big Leaf Roundup.

Gathering Leaves

Spades take up leaves
No better than spoons,
And bags full of leaves
Are light as balloons.
I make a great noise
Of rustling all day
Like rabbit and deer
Running away.
But the mountains I raise
Elude my embrace,
Flowing over my arms
And into my face.
I may load and unload
Again and again
Till I fill the whole shed,
And what have I then?
Next to nothing for weight,
And since they grew duller
From contact with earth,
Next to nothing for color.
Next to nothing for use.
But a crop is a crop,
And who's to say where
The harvest shall stop?

Robert Frost


Wednesday, November 14, 2007


The flowers, fabric, ceramic and wood assembled here were gifts from great women. I cherish them more than I can say. Yes, the gifts - but the women above all.

My friend Daisy Winifred, from across the big pond has discovered this intriguing meme that grows with giving. I like her words: "I found an idea I loved and have signed up. I am not someone who participates in the meme things usually but love the 'reality' of this and the thought of the giving of gifts to 'strangers' such a delightful idea that I am standing at this quiet crossroads and looking forward to those who might pass and ask for a gift from my bag, pocket or hand:0)"

So here's the Meme/idea -
The first three people to comment here and then post the same message on their blogs will receive a small (real, not virtual) present from me!

Now, as D-W explained to me - the present may be as simple as a bit of foliage from the garden . . . . and it may take a while to meander your direction, but the beauty will be in the giving - the connection and the fun of participating in this whimsical way of touching other's lives.


Monday, November 12, 2007

November 12, 1961

Today is my sister Jen's birthday. This picture of her helping our son learn to walk - is one of my treasured possessions.

Jenny has always been a serious observer of life. Her keen intellect and insight can make a conversation or an afternoon fly. I think she must be about two, here. I spent a few nights alone in my mother's home while Mom was in ICU. I photographed her picture wall. These photographs kept me company during some long evenings.

Jen matured into a thoughtful, lovely young woman. She graduated from OSU - moved to Colorado, graduated at the top of her class in EE, then married a great man with whom she is raising their two daughters. Did I say how pleased I am for her successes - how proud I am?

These are Jen and Len's cherished girls, Laura and Kate.

I'm so proud to be her big sister. I like to think that my love for her might have contributed in a small way to the person, wife and mother she has become. Yep, that's a big sister's prerogative - to bask in the light that is her kid-sis. Happy Birthday, Jenny.


Thursday, November 01, 2007


This tidy remnant of the Dahlia garden is all that remained the day after I shot the flower photos below. We'd had our first frost and the insects that had loved the flowers as I, through late summer - we're hanging on among the frosty crystal.

One passes through the roses to get to the Dahlias.

The crystals were just melting from his fuzzy head. (Do click)

So as winter approaches - I'll find a perch to soak up some sun.

And though I may feel a bit like Miss Havershram looks.

I'll be hanging on.

And making little offerings to the bird gods. (Our newly arrived Red-breasted Nuthatches)

And as always - Looking Up.

Heading into November one can't help observing the little deaths as the sun moves south. Still, there's beauty in these departures.

Emily Dickinson wrote this poem about frost. It's an 'ouch' poem.

Apparently with no surprise,
To any happy flower,
The frost beheads it at its play,
In accidental power.
The blond assassin passes on.
The sun proceeds unmoved,
To measure off another day,
For an approving God.


Saturday, October 20, 2007

Hello Young Lovers Who Ever You Are

Hello young lovers who ever you are
I hope your troubles are few
All my good wishes go with you tonight
I've been in love like you

Be brave young lovers and follow your star
Be brave and faithful and true

Cling very close to each other tonight
I've been in love like you

I know how it feels to have wings on your heels
And fly down the street in a trance
You fly down a street on a chance that you'll meet
And you meet not really by chance

Don't cry young lovers what ever you do
Don't cry because I'm alone
All of my memories are happy tonight
I've had a love of my own
I've had a love of my own like yours
I've had a love of my own

Oh my heart. My old heart. How it wept at the sight of these two young people looking into their future. Then my brain commanded: "Your camera! Take a picture!" I did. Now you, too, may shed a tear or smile. Note that the bench they're sharing their reverie on is dedicated to someone who experienced their joy once, too. Hello young lovers . . . .

Friday, October 19, 2007

You're All So Kind

Thanks for all your good wishes regarding Mom. This virus has been rough. She missed her cardiac rehab sessions and has experienced the first angina since her heart attack Sept. 9. I've reassured her that this is one nasty bug and it's not just her impaired heart that is making her feel so punk. We missed a trip to NYC because my hubby got it so badly and is still feeling miserable.

Once she's rid of this infection, she'll have to start over again with recouping her lost strength, but I told her I know she'll soon catch up and start feeling more her old self. Fingers crossed.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Just Needed To Post These Pictures

Mom and I spent some lovely hours together a couple weeks before her heart attack. She's so merry, so much fun.

Her merriness, her capacity for fun, has crossed generations.

This is her precious granddaughter, Laura.

Here's her precious granddaughter, Kate - Laura's kid-sis. Their wonderful mom, Jen - is my kid-sis.

As Mother struggles to mend her heart and recover from this danged virus - it just feels good to put these pictures here - a testament to her life, to her capacity for wonder and laughter, to the forward- looking gift she gave to us all.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Time In The Country With Mom

These are a few photos from the week we spent with my mother who attended her 66th high school reunion during the Free Street Fair in Loudonville, Ohio.

That's the town of Loudonville, where Mom grew up and she and Dad raised us.

I walked onto the hill to look at stars and looking back toward the house saw Mother reading her book.

I love cows. Across the road, this one was also enjoying the morning.

My precious grand-niece, Katie - pointing at the duckies.

I love old barns.

Ohio morning glories reach their full glory, right before frost.

Ann and Mom, standing at their childhood home and admiring the fir tree their father planted 80 years ago.

Mom was with us last week. Her Colorado kid-sis was visiting with us, too. Unfortunately she brought a virus with her. My husband and brother picked her up at the airport. She was hacking her head off. (Sorry - I'm tired and this won't be poetic) Now we all have 'the thing'. The concern is that with Mom's weakened heart - this could be rough. Dang. Just when you think you've found smooth water and clear air . .

We all spent the week in Loudonville where Mom and her sis grew up. I lived there until I was eighteen and now own a musty little 'weekender' a bit up the hill from my sweet brother, Bob and his sweeter wife, Robin.

During the visit I took a few photos and played border collie as I tried to herd those pesky viruses into the 'harmless corral'. This old collie is tired and disappointed. Back to the drawing board and probably back to Mom's to see that things are going OK.

I've missed dropping in on my blogging buddies. We were to travel this week, but with this bug I'll be home and have time to catch up. There's the silver lining I was looking for. Hope you are all well.