Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Storm Clouds Gathering


I usually post colorful clouds, but I think these are pretty magnificent too. 

And they brought us some much needed rain. Far from enough to get us out of this terrible drought, but I'm grateful for what we got. 

You would be surprised to see all the green stuff that burst out of the dry earth after the rain You could practically watch the grass and weeds grow. 

Water ~ you don't appreciate it or even think about it when you have it. But then, when it begins to disappear...

Tuesday, March 29, 2022


Living close to nature while in an exceptional drought is not easy, you observe, you worry, you get so tired of the eternal sunshine, at least I do. 

So when it rains, I can't help myself, I just have to take a few pictures, hoping to capture some raindrops with my smart phone camera. And here, at least I captured rainwater dripping off my roof. 

Faith, who looks like a Lab, even has webbed paws made for swimming and a pretty good size fat tail to steer with. Look at her!

Just a few little dainty steps off the rug. "Go and pee, pee in your yard," I tell her. 

"Who me? No way, I may get wet," says she.

That's how she's always been. Maybe if she saw a lake she would feel differently. But I'm not at all sure about that. 

This attitude makes me wonder again what the other parts of her are. Some dog breed scared of getting wet? I wonder what kind of dog that might be. I've never known one. 

I actually have her DNA kit, but I never swabbed her mouth and sent it in. I used to be curious, but once I had the kit, I sort of forgot about it. 

Maybe I should do it now. 

Monday, March 28, 2022

Animals, People Too & A Small But Mighty Dog

Joyce's friend Solange, now my friend as well, came up to visit and help out. They must have been working hard, because I see no mess in this corral. 

Solange is such a genuine, kind, caring and special person, as is Joyce. I feel so fortunate to end up here with only one neighbor and have that one person be Joyce. This part of her ranch is only about a two minute walk from my house. Then it's uphill to her house. I usually drive, but should start to walk, at least to here. 

Solange's Mucking Service -- No Stall Too Small

Solange told me her dad designed her sweatshirt so appropriately.

After talking to Solange, I went to see the donkey.

And the goat.

Another bonded pair that was so lucky to end up at Joyce's place. 

When the Donkey Rescue was here, where Joyce now lives, I  spent a lot of time out on the rescue. That's where I learned about and fell in love with both donkeys and goats. 

Needless to say, I'm so happy Joyce decided to get this pair. 

Lucky me, before this posted, the Devon herd came to visit, enjoying the shade on an unusually warm March day. 

As far as I know, Joyce buys, sells and rescues animals. She's taken a special interest in the American Milking Devon cows out of Colonial Williamsburg. I believe the original members of her Devon cattle came from there. A long time ago, I saw the papers she has on them. 

The Devon bull ate up all the grass next to my house, which was growing pretty tall and I was going to ask Mark to cut back. 

The last link above may not work, but of course, there are plenty of pictures online at the Colonial Williamsburg website.

Sunday, March 27, 2022

Sunday Morning Reflections ~ On Friendship


Thank you for your input on eventual changes to my blog design. 

It sounds like none are needed right now.

Yesterday, as I wrote this, I reflected on the friendships I've made through blogging. 

I've only met one blogger friend in person.

But still, I feel so close to you guys. You were there for me during my darkest days when Errol was so ill and after he passed away. 

You were there for me each time one of my beloved dogs died. 

You've watched, and I know been happy for me in recent years, as I've moved into my 80s and faced my challenges with some complaints, but also with good humor. 

When I first started blogging, I just wanted followers, I wanted to be popular. 

I had no idea that you could make real and lasting friendships through blogging. 

Now I know, and all of you, my friends, enrich my life and make it so much better.

Friday, March 25, 2022

Why Your Comments Are Slow To Post & I Need Your Advice

I've only very recently learned the reason your comments don't immediately post, which is as follows: 

A long time ago, before I knew any better, I decided to surround my basic blog with image gadgets showing pictures of pets, flowers and other things I love. Unfortunately, this slows the process of opening my blog in it's entirety, which is needed for comments to post.  

Most of the photos that surround my blog were sent to me by freinds.  Some of them honor memories of pets that are no longer with me or with my friends. 

I would like for the pictures to stay, but if they present a serious problem, I can take them down. 

It took me one minute and five seconds to fully open my blog.

I know this is an eternity in busy lives. 

Maybe the image gadgets could go somewhere else? 

After all these years, it may even be fun to change the entire look of my blog. Then I could incorporate the pictures into the basic blog format. 

Not sure I would even know how to do that. 

And then maybe I wouldn't like it. 

Or you wouldn't like it. 

I want to make this easier for you. It's awful to write a comment and then not be able to post it. 

Please let me know what you think. 

As always, I appreciate your feedback. 

Thank you.

Thursday, March 24, 2022

Rust ~ Post No. 36


I haven't kept up with my rust posts. I should have shared this one and a few more since Vince and Jane went to Death Valley, some time ago now, and were so kind to stop and take pictures of some rusty wrecks they found along the way. For my blog.

It's also caused me some problems, as it was posted in February, by some weird mistake, sort of after the fact. Or I forgot I posted it. 

Anyhow, I love the picture. It's such a wonderful photo of what you may find off a desert highway.

So this is Rust Post number 36 and I have several more in drafts.

Wednesday, March 23, 2022

Walking ~ Post No. 4

As I will post more often about my walking, I decided to number the posts. Looking back, this is number four, I believe. I'm looking forward to documenting my progress here. Hopefully, there will be progress. 

Right now I have so many posts that I need to begin posting every day to keep up. I don't have any more doctors on my calendar for awhile now, I should have time. 

Someone else walked here, someone big, not sure who it may have been. Our earth is so soft that tracks often disappear. I've seen no sign of bears for many years, but they live here too. I would rather have a bear than some strange dude hanging out on my land. 

This little juniper tree used to be so pretty before it got so dry that about half of it died. When there's not enough water, junipers can self-prune to kill off some branches in order to preserve the rest of the tree. This may have happened here. 

This is my angel dog Princess, my black Lab mix before Faith. Princess was much larger and probably a cross with Border Collie, this based on her interest and skill in herding, her incredible smarts, she rescued one of our dogs, who was lost in the mountains. Also her nose and ears look more like a Border Collie.

Princess and I used to walk on our land and I remember she was very interested in this. She would sniff and sniff. Faith couldn't care less and the thing, whatever it is, has deteriorated considerably since Princess and I walked here. 

The weather was warm today, March 22nd, as if it knew spring has arrived according to the calendar. 

Faith got quite hot after running aroud. I wonder if she meant to lie down in the shade of the juniper or decided to stay in the sun. 

All in all we had a nice walk. I don't feel much stronger yet and my back hurts after awhile. I need to find out where that broken bone is located in my back and what to do about it. 

Ack, the things we forget to take care of as we march deeper into our 80s! 

Monday, March 21, 2022

Two New Additions To Joyce's Herd


I was surprised and happy when Joyce drove away somewhere and came back home with this adorable pair.

Clearly bonded, they graze together, nuzzle each other and are just lovely to watch.  

They are young, heifers, who now have found a great new home where they will be much loved and well taken care of. One is a Swiss Brown, the other part Holstein, I think. I know very little about cows, but I think that's what Joyce told me. 

Joyce has focused on the Devon breed of cattle and earlier had some Guernsey cows and a lovely bull. The cows didn't thrive here and were sold. The bull was born here and we all loved him, he was so sweet. Unfortunately, he recently died after he had an accident and injured a leg severly. 

The Devon breed is sturdier and able to do well in our dry canyon with its cold winters and hot summers. All Joyce's animals get supplemental hay twice a day. Only burros could survive on what's available of nature's food around here.

I'm looking forward to watching these two grow up together.

Sunday, March 20, 2022

Sunday Morning Reflections


I spent some time at my neighbor Joyce's place last week. I took a lot of pictures of many of her farm animals and I've been reflecting on how very fortunate I am to live so close to a  woman who loves animals and knows how to care for them. 

She had some new arrivals, to young cows, heifers. 

Her ranch is a truly happy place. 

So get ready for some ranch pictures in the coming weeks. 

Thursday, March 17, 2022

Feeling Lucky

Last week, when I filled up my tank, gas was $5.35 a gallon, for a total of $52.50. But I felt lucky when my car told me it would go 459 miles on that tank.

I also felt lucky I don't live in Los Angeles, where gas is more than $6.00 a gallon.

A woman in the grocery store, the other day, kept complaining to the check out clerk about the outrageous prices she encountered while trying to put food on her table. 

The cashier was young, it certainly wasn't her fault that the prices are high. As she kept ringing up a very substantial amount of groceries for the woman, she tried to tell her that prices do go up and prices then go down. 

The woman wouldn't listen and, as some people often do while complaining about one thing, the woman began to complain about something else. 

The high price of gasoline. The young cashier kept ringing up the woman's stuff, keeping her cool until she was about to blow up. 

Then she turned to me and said, "you've lived a long life, isn't it true that prices go up and down?"

I said, "yes, and we should be lucky we're not back in the 1970s when there was little gas to be had. Cars in Los Angeles, where I lived, were lined up around blocks, waiting. 

And, should you want to buy a house, the mortgage interest rates at the end of the '70s were around 11%!"

That last one really got their attention.

The complaining woman was quiet, the clerk smiled at me. 

Thinking back, I feel lucky that at least for now we have gas and I can afford to buy it.

I have my house and my car. 

Perhaps the complaining woman was not so lucky. 

Prices are high, that's so true, but please don't let your frustrations out on young people, on their feet all day long,  trying to make a living. 

I sort of wished I had said that to the complaining woman, but then I know it wouldn't have made a difference. None at all. 

At the end of the day, I feel lucky I don't need to take my frustrations out on others. 




Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Monday, March 14, 2022

Palm Trees, Spring Flowers And Good News


I needed to have a bone density scan, so last week, Jasmine drove me to Bakersfield.

Since my pulmonary NP told me I have a broken bone in my spine, I've been a bit concerned. 

As it turned out, all is well, or well enough for me to be very happy! 

The day after my test, my doctor's office called and said I have osteopenia. I've had that for about ten years, so it hasn't progressed. Must be all the yogurt I eat, plus the calcium and D3. I'm so happy, I was worried. So happy, in fact, that I forgot to ask about the broken bone. Will do that later.

I had such a nice time with Jasmine. I forgot to bring something to eat. Which wasn't good since I would miss my lunch. So Jasmine found a Vons store and bought the best yogurt for me. It was half full of fresh fruit and tasted so good. 

I hope this was the last medically necessary trip for a long time. But it was a nice trip, fields of spring flowers lined the highway as we got closer to the valley below.  

I took this on our way home, I should have pulled the window all the way down, as you can see, I didn't. Spring flowers around here are so awesome. 

Soon we were in the mountains and I was almost home, while Jasmine had to drive another 50 miles or so to get home. 

She's been a great help and I've enjoyed spending time with her. A caring, smart and thoughtful young woman. 

Sunday, March 13, 2022

Sunday Morning Reflections

When the sun rises, it rises for everyone.

~ Cuban Proverb


Friday, March 11, 2022

The Mattress Bed


Recently, Faith hurt her back when she jumped up on my bed, where we sleep together, I under the covers, she on top. 

She wasn't badly hurt, but she slept on the floor, on the bedroom carpet. I wanted her to have a proper place to sleep, so I ordered a mattress bed for her. 

By the time it arrived, Faith had recovered. So I put it on the bed to see if she'd sleep on it.

This is what happened:

Me: The bed is soft, Faith. Feel it, it's soft.

Faith: It's new, it smells new, who knows where it came from.

Me: It came from Amazon.

Faith: Figures, that's where all your stuff comes from.

Me: So you prefer this scratchy old Army blanket?

Faith: Smells familiar. 

Me: Come on, try the new bed. It's soft, very soft you will like it. 

After a while, Faith fell asleep, head on the new bed.

Then a bit more of her moved onto the new bed. I don't know if she did this in her sleep or not.

But soon I found her with most of her body on the new bed.

This is probably only interesting to me, but I thought it was cute enough to be posted here.  

I hope it made you smile. 

Thursday, March 10, 2022

More On Walking & Disappearing Comments


After learning about your missing comments on my post "Walking" and that the post appeared a day earlier than scheduled, I tried to figure out what happened. 

In the Comments section, where all commets are listed, I found several comments that hadn't been published so I clicked on the Approved checkmark for them. Then checked my blog and found that nothing happened. They didn't get published. 

And now they are gone.

But I read them all, so thank you. 

I occasionally check there to make sure late comments are published. 

But since I don't use Comment Moderation, I don't make sure all current comments are published. 

Should I? 

I usually post on Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Friday, but sometimes the days may change. 

This particular post was scheduled for Tuesday, March 8, at 1:00 a.m. PT. And according to my blog records, it was posted at the scheduled date and time. 

I'm sorry about the problems.

Your support for my walking program will most definitely motivate me.  


Friko, I'm so glad I inspired you. I too need help to stay motivated. 

So why don't I post about my progress, what motivates me, and what holds me back a couple of times a month. And you could do the same. 

Trust me, I don't walk far and it's the breathing that holds me back. But it's also the breathing that motivates me to walk more. I don't have COPD now, but was told by my pulmonary nurse practitioner that using the inhaler and walking should help to prevent or slow down further lung damage. 

And I figure, if it doesn't, walking will make me stronger. 

Finally, this is a very inspiring blog, which confirms to me the truth of Henry David Thoreau's famous quote:

"An early morning walk is a blessing for the whole day."

Tuesday, March 8, 2022



The pulmonary nurse practitioner said I must use my inhaler and walk to avoid progressive lung disease. Enough to kind of scare me straight. To walking more.

I've love my walks and thought I still always walk. But once I really thought about it, I found I do not. Not really, just short walks. 

I know this is due to issues with my lungs. Damn cigarettes, I haven't smoked since 1993, and now I can't walk. My legs are fine, I skated all my young life, on hockey skates, I rode horses, I walked and hiked.

Because my land is hilly and in the mountains, my lungs get more of a workout than if I were to walk on the beach. Still, my walks were not long. 

So I decided to get serious, I have my pedometer in my pocket and will try to walk every day. Inside if the weather is really bad. 

I'm focusig on building up my endurance. 

The other day, I walked in a snowstorm, not one of soft large snowflakeds, but of small and stingy ones, with a cold, strong wind lashing at my face, turning my cheeks bright red. 

This was the best, most invigorating walk I've had in years. 

This is how coyotes walk. It's hard to imagine four paws made this straight line, isn't it? 


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