Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Before Sunrise



The silhouette of the hills reminds me of a Swedish poem about the cliffs of the large South island in Stockholm. 
 

As cut out of sooty paper -- the poet wrote about the silhouette of the cliffs.


I love watching the sun rise over the hills and mountains this time of the year.


Today, Monday, June 21st, the sun rises here at 5:39 a.m. and sets at 8:11 p.m. I know it's been up for awhile where most of you live. 


Have a great day!
















Friday, June 18, 2021

Conversations With Faith

 


Me: What are you doing?

Faith: Guarding what's mine.

Me: There are no thieves in this house.

Faith: You never know. 

Me: Samson doesn't chew on bones and he's never played with a ball in his life. I think you're being unfair and worried about nothing. 

Faith: He's not the only one who lives in this house.

Me: What? You're worried about me?

Faith: Someone who looks just like you ... been known to take balls and put them in the closet. 

Me: That's just to keep them from rolling under the couch.

Faith: Whatever...

Me: Sorry, I'll try to make sure you always have your ball.

Faith: Thank you, mommy. I know you mean well.









Sunday, June 13, 2021

Sunday Morning Reflections


I have no words or quotes for this Sunday morning. So let me just wish for you all, my dear friends, a nice, peaceful and happy Sunday.











Saturday, June 12, 2021

The Roadrunner

and his wife.


 When I sat outside yesterday morning, suddenly a chorus of beeping noises broke out all over my yard. The sentinel ground squirrels were raising the alarm and I thought a coytote was on the way to drink some water from my leaky faucet, which I haven't yet shut off. 

No, it was the roadrunner and his wife. I didn't have my phone so this is an old picture. Of the wife. He's much flashier, of course, and I looked for his picture, but couldn't find it. 

Curious as to why the squirrels were concerned with two  birds, I asked Google. 

This is what I learned:

Greater Roadrunner Feeding Her Babies Newborn Groundsquirrels

You may not want to watch it, but everyone has to eat and nature can look cruel to us humans. 

But as D. H. Lawrence said: "I've never seen a wild thing sorry for itself." 

When we first moved here, we had a large cottonwood tree in our front yard and I actually saw a roadrunner couple raid a bird's nest. I believe I interfered with nature and chased them away. 

Closeup, they are intimidating birds with their very large and dangerous looking beaks. 

They have several roadrunner videos you can watch on youtube. I read one story, where a naturalist was talking about the fact that he had never seen a roadrunner, and really hoped to be able to encounter one some day. 

That made me feel so lucky to have my resident couple. 

 Yesterday was my best day for watching animals. 

I saw: One very skinny coyote, who did not look well; the road runner and his wife; many, many ground squirrels; ravens, and a variety of small birds; a covey (flock) of California quail; about five Jack rabbits (hares in Europe); a couple of cottontail rabbits; and one fence lizard. 

Some of these I saw because I was outside, several through my windows and then outside as I walked out to watch them. 

No luck with taking pictures.

I enjoyed my day and felt better after seeing so many critters that apparently found food, where I could see absolutely nothing worth eating. And I mean for wild animals to eat. 











 

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

My Monday


I've moved into my spare bedroom/office, the one facing north, for the summer. Looking out my window, even while in bed, I see my steep hill with juniper trees climbing up the hillside. Outside my window, coyotes come to drink water a dusk, and rabbits, Jack rabbits, and ground squirrels live here also. House finches have a nest under the eaves. The first animals I saw after moving in were two deer sprinting up the hillside.


This morning, the sky was pink, even the ground was pink. Sleeping in this bedroom, feels like sleeping outside. Almost. I think I will move in here permanently. It's good for my soul.

Then I drove over to the hospital to have my mammogram done. The tech who did it was very cute and giggly, and made me giggle too. A lovely visit. Afterwards, I drove straight home, forgetting to stop at the post office, which is right next door to the hospital. Ack, old age, so much fun! 

Over the weekend, I fixed up a part of my living room. Since I cancelled my DirecTV and since I never liked the big TV in the living room, I managed to get it down from the chest it sat on with only a small part of it landing on my foot. 

I will see if Mark can take it to the dump for me. It's quite heavy. And since 2014, so not up-to-date and I doubt anyone would want it.

Resting in bed now, with the window wide open. The sky is gray, overcast and a slight cool breeze comes through my window.

An altogether lovely day. 





Monday, June 7, 2021

Last Week: 5/30 - 6/5/2021

 

For a while now, I've wanted to keep a weekly journal on my blog.  

I'm trying it out here:

Sunday, May 30th

I probably did some things around the house and rested in the afternoon. I hadn't decided to try this journal, so I didn't keep a record or take any pictures.

Monday, May 31 - Memorial Day

I had a close encounter with a Northern Pacific rattlesnake.

Tuesday, June 1st 

Went to an appointment with Jim, the dermatology PA who comes up here from Palmdale. They rent offices in town. Their new office had a small and badly ventilated waiting room. And the wait was over an hour, they said. I found myself with not enough patience to deal with that, so I rescheduled for an early morning appointment at the end of July. And left.


Turning into the road that I share with Joyce, I was greeted by these sweet guys. And felt immediately much better. 

Wednesday, June 2nd


I took my trash to the dump.


The guy next to me threw these bowls away. I thought they may work to provide water for the animals when I turn off my leaky  outdoor water system. You can't see it here, but they are really huge.


My container garden is doing well, except some critter ate the jalapeno plant. I suspect a Fence lizard I saw earlier. 

Thursday, June 3rd


I stopped at the railroad crossing on my way to Quest labs for a blood test for an upcoming doctor's appoinment. Again, the wait at Quest was over an hour. I've never experienced this before and will, from now on, be sure to make an appointment.

Is someone trying to ensure I work on my patience here? 

Friday, June 4th

Mark came over and we started working on going through and cleaning out the shed. That is, Mark worked while I sat in chair in the shade and decided what to keep and what to toss. Mark wanted to buy a few things that we agreed were worth $10.00. 

 Saturday, June 5th


Joyce texted she had something I had to come to her house and see. On my way up the hill, I took another picture of this lovely quartet. 


And this is who Joyce wanted me to meet. 


There were two of them, both female. 

I only got pictures of this one. Joyce has had some bad luck with kittens before. They would get out, never to be seen again. It's too wild and dangerous for small critters around here, one reason I don't have a cat. 

Joyce has an older cat, named Einstein. He's learned about his environment and knows how to stay safe. 

The new kittens were adorable. I hope they will grow up and be safe here. 


 










Sunday, June 6, 2021

Sunday Morning Reflections

 


Today is the National Day of Sweden, celebrating the coronation of King Gustav Vasa in 1523 and the date of a new constitution in 1809. 

Gustav Vasa was instrumental in freeing Sweden from Danish rule in the early 16th century. From what I remember from school, he was quite a guy. 

June is such a lovely month in Sweden and a time that I'm quite homesick. Not to go back and live for good, but in a perfect world though, how wonderful it would be to go back every year for just the month of June. 

The last time I was there was in June 2005. My friends Inga and Christina were wonderful, as always, and made sure I had an unforgettable time. 

So many good memories, the best birthday ever, and those lovely light nights. 

I'm so grateful for these two good friends. If you read this, thank you for always being there for me. 












Friday, June 4, 2021

Conversations With Faith ~ Rattlesnake Wrangling

 


Faith: We're so glad you're safe, mommy. We watched you wrangle that rattlesnake the other day.

Me: Yes, I think I did a pretty good job; after I made a pretty stupid mistake. 

Faith: Yes, first you pulled those big boxes out of the Jeep and left them overnight.

Me: I know, I meant to take them to the dump recycle, but then I had to go and pick up our food and stuff from Walmart. I really meant to put the boxes back in the Jeep after I was done. 

Faith and Samson: But then you got so very tired, like you always do, and it didn't get done.

Me: Right, and leaving them overnight was my first mistake.

Faith: What was your second?


Me: Picking the box up without thinking.

Faith: And out fell the snake?

Me: Yes, and it was a lively one too. It got really scared, poor thing. It was rattling like crazy, almost looked like it was jumping up and down. Then it went under the Jeep, so I had to quickly jump in and move the Jeep away. I didn't want the snake to slither into the engine.


Faith: They never stay long in the engine though.

Me: No they don't like engines very much. But I wanted to keep an eye on the snake to protect you guys. 

Faith: I'm vaccinated! I got my shot!

Me: Yes, but you'd be surprised how much it could still hurt you. And then Samson can't be vaccinated, so I always try to keep you both safe. 


Faith and Samson: We know you do, mommy.


Me: When I was younger, around 70 or so, I would pick up the snakes with the flat shovel and carry them way out on the land and leave them there, never to be seen again. 

Faith: But now that you're 80, almost 81, you can barely lift that big shovel, can you?

Me: Yes, I can, but I'm not sure how far I can walk with it, carrying a snake. Then snakes tend to fall off, so you have to pick them back up again, and that could get difficult.

Faith: So you used the waterhose.

Me: Yes, water always works well on snakes. Spray some on them first, so they know what it is, then just spray behind them and they will move.

So I moved it down to the shade of the cottonwood tree and left it there. I don't think we'll see that snake again.
 

Faith: Thank you, mommy.

Samson: Yeah, thanks mommy. You always take good care of us.

Me: I love you, guys!







Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Wordless Wednesday (Almost)

 

Hanging out with the big guys!








Sunday, May 30, 2021

Sunday Morning Reflections

 


You make known to me the path of life
in your presence there is fullness of joy

~ Psalm 16:11











Sunday, May 23, 2021

Sunday Morning Reflections

 



All good things are wild and free.

~ Henry David Thoreau







Sunday, May 16, 2021

Sunday Morning Reflections

 


I've left the main highway and am just meandering through the countryside of aging.

~ by my friend Dee








Friday, May 14, 2021

What Happened To My Yard?


Fire abatement rules mandate that all weeds must be removed by June 1. After removal, 100 feet around my house should look like this picture, just dirt. Not the prettiest, but safety is more important. 

In the 15 years I've lived here, even during the drought years, my yard would look like this by mid-May. I posted this on May 11, 2020.

Each year, no matter what, weeds grew with amazing speed and I needed to hire someone with a tractor to clear my yard.  


It looks like no tractor will be needed this year,  since my yard still looks like this, except the tree and the lilac bush are both green now and look healthy. 

I'm having problems with Google photos, so I can only show old pictures right now. 

The difference in my yard from last year to now is so huge, it's like a premonition of what's to come if we humans don't change our ways. 

I was sure that the effects of our changing climate would not be noticed in my immediate environment in my lifetime. 

I was wrong.






Monday, May 10, 2021

Conversations with Faith - California Condors

 

Faith: What are you hemming and hawing about?

Me: Hemming and hawing, you're a dog, how do you know weird words like that? You're for sure the smartest dog I've ever known.

Faith: I know.

Me: So I was reading the Washington Post on my Kindle and the name of our town came up.

Faith: That's exciting, I hope they spelled it right. Why?

Me: Because some California condors had trashed this woman's entire deck. 

Faith: Why? Were they mad at her?

Me: I don't know. But do you know what the biggest problem was?

Faith: I bet they pooped all over the deck and didn't clean up after themselves. 

Me: Faith, you're absolutely right. It was like shoveling up concrete, the poor woman said. 

Faith: How many birds did this to her?

Me: The paper said 15 to 20 birds and you know they're giant birds. 

Faith: I know, she should shoot them if they come back.

Me: You are not allowed to shoot them, they are what's called endangered. I read there are only about 160 of them flying free in California and some more in other countries. So very few of them are left. 

Faith: It's sort of sad when animals disappear. I'm glad I'm a dog, I don't think we'll disappear any time soon. 

Me: It's pretty cool though that we live in condor territory, don't you think?

Faith: Personally, I think we live in raven territory. But they've left us too. 

Me: I know, Uncle Bob stole them.

Faith: How can you steal a raven?

Me: He is very kind to them and then he feeds them horse treats. You weren't nice to them,  you used to chase them all over the place. So no wonder they left us. 

Faith: I know, it was so much fun chasing them. Stole the ravens. I say, what's the world coming to? Pooping big birds and faithless ravens, I don't know...













Sunday, May 9, 2021

Sunday Morning Reflections

 

Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.

~ Ralph Waldo Emerson


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thanks to my long-ago boyfriend Henry, I have continued to work on self-awareness, my spiritual being, my fears, insecurities, and the actual things that hold me back in my life. I've overcome many things, I'm a content and happy person, I have everything I need, I've dropped fear along the way, and I've come to see that love is really what matters in life. 

But there's one thing impossible to improve on, or so it seems.    

PATIENCE

Yesterday, I was waiting for my relatives who probably only saw the rising sun on school day mornings. 

The kids, I mean. 

They eventually showed up, hours late, and we had a lovely day. Nothing really changed by them being late. We communicated, I knew they woke up late, their dad had something to see to, their car needed oil, which had to be bought. Life got in the way of them being here when I expected them to. 

And I was the only one who suffered, here in my own home. It wasn't like I was standing on a street corner, waiting. 

I'm reflecting on patience this Sunday morning. 







 

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Boys In Mexico

 

Errol and I spent many, many weekends in Baja California, Mexico. On one of our trips, we came upon some Americans, including these two boys. 

I've always loved the picture, it represents what boyhood is and should be all about, I think. 






Monday, May 3, 2021

Conversations With Faith -- The Great Migration Of The Swedish Moose




Faith: What are you watching?

Me: The Great Annual Migration of the Swedish Moose. 

Faith: What's that?

Me: Swedish TV has set up 29 cameras along the annual trek of the moose and show them on TV, walking through the forest. 

Faith: How far do they walk?

Me: About 400 miles.

Faith: That sounds like a very long way to walk. Why do they do it? Is it for excercise?

Me: No, they spend the winter in the coastal areas and then they trek back to the mountains for the summer. And it's all for food

Faith: So their food doesn't come in a can or a bag, like ours?

Me: No they eat grass, weeds, and leaves off trees.

Faith: Like the cows next door?

Me:  Yes, but the moose have to walk through deep forests and swim across a wide river that's very cold. I just saw that the water temperature is 32F. I'm just watching it now, this is a very big river with a long way from shore to shore. 

Faith: Do you see any moose.

Me: No, just a Swedish forest and the river. 

Faith: No moose. Sounds boring.

Me: No, it's not boring to me, 

Faith: Do you miss Sweden?

Me: A lot sometimes., 

Faith: Any moose yet?

Me: No.

Faith: Sounds like a good show to go to sleep by. 

Me: It's called Slow TV, I think. And you're right it's a very good show to go to sleep by. 

Faith: Wouldn't work in America, people want fast-moving shows here. 

Me: You can click at the bottom and move forward to where the moose are. Little squares show you where they are and other animals too. I saw a herd of reindeer, and a red fox running on the rocky shore of the river, looking for something to catch for dinner. And I've seen cranes too, and many water fowl. And just now I saw a beaver working on his house.

Faith: Good, but it still sounds pretty boring. I think I will take a little nap now. 

Me: OK, sweet girl, mama loves you.

Faith: You forgot my birthday.

Me: I know, but I remembered later and gave you some ice cream to lick on. 

Faith: But nothing on your blog. Nothing like what Samson gets every year.

Me: I'm sorry, but it doesn't mean I don't love you.

Faith: It just means your'e old and can't remember stuff.

Me: That's what it means. 


OK, here it is: On April 28, 2021, Faith had her 7th birthtday.

Happy Birthday, dear Faith, Happy Birthday to You.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Note:

The moose is the National Animal of Sweden and Swedish TV documents the annual migration of some of the moose from their winter home in the coastal areas to their summer home along the slopes of the mountains to the west. 

The migration of the moose, as documented on Swedish TV, covers about 400 miles with 29 cameras set up along the way. 

The most exciting part, I imagine, is waiting for the moose to show up at this wide and very cold river. The first moose arrived at the river on Sunday and began to swim across. This was duly noted in the newpaper part of Swedish TV at svt.se. 

I took some photos, but right now I'm having problems with Google photos. So no moose today.


Link to the Great Swedish Moose Migration








Saturday, May 1, 2021

Country Life

 


The dogs are looking for something or someone they can smell, but not see. They are so alert to any noise or movement in nature.


I finished the Kitty jigsaw puzzle, it was a lot of fun. 


I went to see Joyce the other morning and then stopped by to look at the latest calf to be born. It's next to it's mom, with the slightly larger calf off to the side.  The rest of the animals are finishing up their breakfast.


While at her place, I spotted this goose and commented on it. Joyce said, take it, I have so much stuff. So I did and I think it's enjoying it's new life on top of the doghouse roof. It cheers me up every time I look at it. 

My computer tells me to lighten up this photo, but I like it just the way it is. I get a bit annoyed when my devices tell me what to do, even if they mean well. Which makes me wonder what life on earth will be like in another 100 years. 

Other than that, I can't seem to decide what to do about getting a new car. The other day, I looked at too many cars online and read too many reviews and customer comments. Ending up with new ideas of which car I want. Then thinking maybe I should stick with the original thought of the Honda HR-V.

From that to thinking maybe I should stick with the Jeep and save the money. That thought lasts every day until about noon when the winds pick up again. My Jeep is a two-door version with a soft top, so no fun to drive in windy weather. Which by now is every day.

Right now the weather report on my Kindle says winds: WNW 32 mph. 

I have laundry in the washer and no way can I hang it on the lines. The wind picked up sooner than usual today. I have no idea what to do, except hang it in the bathroom. It's been done before, so no big deal. 

Happy weekend, dear friends.





Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Storm Clouds



The other evening, as I sat at my dining table and worked on my jigsaw puzzle, I noticed storm clouds gathering around the mountains to the east. 


Since we so seldom get rain here, it felt both unusual and so very good to sit at peace and watch the clouds.


After a while, I went outside and took a few more pictures. I know it rains most other places in this country and some of you get way too much of it. But I miss rain so much, we got a lot more of it the first ten years we lived here. These days, next to nothing. We're just coming toward the end of a very dry rainy season. 


Faith came with me and she too watched. 


But soon her pretty eyes were fixed on me again. I don't know what to do with this dog, she just loves me so much and is so attached to me. As I am to her. I tell her she's my support dog and she looks appropriately concerned and caring. Or turns over and goes to sleep. As dogs are wont to do. 


She probably would be quite annoyed if she knew I'm working on a kitty jigsaw puzzle.


This is the second puzzle I'm trying. The first one took me a while, but was for 9 years old and up so I felt a lot of pressure to finish it. This is another one of only 300 pieces, so I guess I will be able to get it done. 

Monday was the day after I watched the clouds roll in. Not much rain fell. Since I've lived here the last snow day was May 23rd. So we may get some more wet days. I certainly hope so. 











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