Friday, January 30, 2009

Following Tessie's Nose

Disclaimer: I am not a tracker, a hunter, nor a student of the forest. I do love walking through it. In the summer Tessie (brown lab mix) takes off through the woods, nose to the ground, following who knows what. In the winter with the snow on the ground, we know! It is fun to see with our eyes what Tessie "sees" with her nose the year 'round.
Here are the indications that we are walking through someone else's habitat.

I believe this was some sort of bird - small enough - and if that is a tail track then I am not sure. Pretty and went for a long way.

I believe this is a rabbit

And this is probably a raccoon - notice the opposable thumbs.

and her teenaged cubs were in the parking lot. Dog next door 
treed the cubs - well mama probably told them to get up the tree. 
She stayed on the ground and stood guard. 
This footprint belongs to one of the cubs. Mom's prints are larger.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Artistic talent

I am not an artist. I am very talented in many ways ~ having a lovely picture or design come out of a brush at the end of my hand is not one of the ways. So it is amazing and delightful to me when it happens.

The hub is a woodworker and has created library shelves, bathroom cabinets and several other things for the house. My contribution is to oil the wood. When I do that mundane and still important job, I become an artist. 

I wipe an oil-filled rag across a plain piece of wood and lovely and gorgeous designs appear. The wood turns a rich amber. Twirls and swirls of darker and lighter hues flow across the cutting. From my finger tips, art appears. I love it. ~ with blessings

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A blog I really like

I have found a new blog from a new writer. You will find it listed under Blogs I Like: Pauline's Place. Pauline is Pauline Trent a romance author. The website will tell you what you want to know about Pauline.

What I like and want to share is her blog: she is going to be giving advice on living a champagne life on a beer budget. I like the idea that a romance author who writes about romantic subjects and people and knows how to stir romance in our imaginations will be sharing ways to have romance in our reality. This should be fun! ~ blessings

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The Peaceful Transition of Power

I am Such an American! Of course to me that means to me the ability and freedom to criticize and argue and praise ~ sometimes all at once. 

And this morning I am in tears. We make this amazing political transition every four years with such dignity and celebration. And today we make history. Standing before us is our first African-American President. It was a very simple ceremony really ~ and it is done. His words ring out in hope and realism. And we move forward into history.

God bless President Obama ~ and how Wonderful that sounds ~ with blessings

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Moving On

I'm still missing Cowboy ~ and here are some other things that are going on in my life. 

Two fun grandsons stayed with us this weekend and we had Such a Good Time! We talked and read and hiked. They sat in the hot tub, ate popcorn and built shelves in the shop with Grandpa. We had a lovely time. 

I cried when I watched President and Vice-President Elect lay a wreath and listen to Taps at the Tomb of the Unknown. 

I am loving all the inauguration "stuff" ~ and very excited about the historical step our country is taking. Joyful time. 

I am praying for Obama come Wednesday morning when he will be plunged into the economic, military, intelligence, educational mess this country is in. God bless him.

Friday, January 16, 2009

I understand

Tessie is searching: she is in and out; she sniffs the ground and all the spots Cowboy used to frequent. She is restless. And I can understand. She had been with us to take him to the vet before and she stayed in the car and he came back. Wednesday he didn't. He went in and didn't come back. And now she can't find him. Oh, dear Tessie, neither can I. Except I have some understanding of what happened and why. And I have pictures to look at and appreciate and remember. ~ blessings

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Cowboy: The Life of a Dog

Winter was Cowboy's time although a walk to the point in summer was a delight too. 
He enjoyed his family ~ thoroughly Disliked his bath ~ and hung out with Tessie on snowshoe trails and barking at coyotes. He always knew when I was coming up the stairs and met me there eager for an ear scritch. Mornings when I sat by the fire, he would lay his chin on my knee and just be near. For a dog who was with us for less than 2 years he certainly made an impression. I would wish for more eloquence or the ability to write a poem. As it is ~ here he is with love and a fond farewell ~ blessings                                             

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The Death of a Dog

His name is Cowboy. He came to us 18 months ago at the end of journey through the family. The last month before he arrived here had not been pretty or fun. After three hours in the office, he went on a walk with D and our other dog. 20 minutes into the 1 1/2 hour walk, he was back on our deck, having found his way "home" through the woods, across the street in front of the high school and down the hill through more woods. I knew he was meant to be with us. And so he was. 

The heart disease arrived last spring. He lost muscle mass, his tummy swelled from fluid his heart could not process and he had a hard time lying down so he rarely slept. By this week he was exhausted and although a 5 year old lab in his soul, his heart had made him much older. He took no initiative. He quit following the scent of coyotes into the woods. He stood and looked sad. And so last night we made the hard, hard decision to let him go. This morning I sat next to him, held him and told him it was ok for him to go. Although we would be sad, he didn't have to stay around for us. He ate no breakfast and slept the rest of the morning until time to go to the vets.

He lay beside me on his blanket and first went to sleep with my hand on his head and my voice in his ear telling him he was a good dog and that we loved him. After he was sleeping deeply, the vet gave him another shot and slowly the labored breathing stopped. It was the first time in several months that I had not watched him struggle to breathe. In many ways it was a relief. Although D and I both cried, it is positive to see him at rest and have our last sight of him be at peace and no longer in a struggle. 

After a few more minutes, we left him resting peacefully on his blanket. His ashes will be returned to us and we will place his little box next to two other boxes - this being the third time in our 7 years together D and I have done this - and one day all the little boxes will be taken up the hill into the woods and laid to rest. 

Meanwhile, our boy rests easy and we have fond memories of a good, loving dog. Good-bye, Cowboy -- blessings

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Why a Cross?

Saw a commercial tonight for a piece of jewelry - a lovely cross made of crystal and silver - and if you looked in the middle crystal, you saw The Lord's Prayer. Beautiful necklace. I am just not into wearing the cross no matter how strong my faith.

It is a question I have asked for years: why did the church, Christianity, whomever choose a cross for our symbol? It is after all a symbol of torture and death. Better a symbol of peace, love and forgiveness - no, I don't know what. It is hard to depict an empty tomb, symbol of resurrection and Joy. All I know is, I don't wear crosses no matter how "dressed up" they are. That's my thought for tonight ~ blessings

Friday, January 9, 2009

Little Bits of Newness

It's new year: a time of resolutions and change and looking forward. Resolutions are such a pain because so often we try to change in such Big Ways and end up disappointing ourselves. *sigh* So this year I am pleased to have found some little changes to make. Insignificant to others, they mean a lot to me. 

I put doodads away to make room for decorations. I am putting them back in different places or leaving them tucked away for a while. 

Silly? Perhaps. Meaningful to me? Absolutely! My house looks just a little different reminding me that change is good and beautiful, creative and significant regardless of how small. And having made these creative changes on the shelf, I can make creative changes in my life: release, allow and accept ~ with blessings

Monday, January 5, 2009

Holiday reflections ~ 2

No doubt about it: the internet and being connected is part of our existence. We were without internet connection through our airport wireless for several days. If it were urgent, we could go to the office and get on the ethernet -- and no one felt what they wanted to do was that "urgent" - even the folks playing WoW. And I have Missed you! I haven't checked in with my daughter's blog ~ and her wonderful readers who comment. I knew I was getting at least a Few emails. The same daughter and I IM occasionally ~ and almost every afternoon I IM with a friend in Cardiff Wales. I missed all of that -- never mind playing crosswords and reading the news. 

On the other hand: we had 10 people in the house and I loved being "Mama Susan", reading and reading and reading; helping make and ice (oh, the icing) cookies; and during the day going outside and sliding down the tubing run. (the above picture)

Daughter continued to cook. Son arrived and did dishes every night he was here and . . . And, taught his 11 year old son how to do the same. 

Games of all sorts were brought out and cards and dominoes arrived from family history and taught to the next generation. 

It was a lovely, delightful and wonderful holiday ~ and today all the decorations were taken down and put away for another year. I cried a little, I smiled a little. I remembered the grandkids helping me decorate. I thought about all those ornaments, and their history, and laid them gently into their boxes. ~ blessings in the new year