I am a huge fan of Stranger Things, a Netflix series about a parallel world that exists just below the one in which we live. This pandemic has delayed the release of season 4, naturellement. In the meantime, my dearest teaching widower and I are sort of binge-watching Kiefer Sutherland’s 24, waiting out our Covid isolation time. I say sort of because we both feel a bit too miserable to binge on anything, even chocolate. Did I mention I have no sense of smell and my DTW has no sense of taste? Together, we make less than one functioning brain; usually we make at least one between us!
I took this upside-down photo last fall, wishing that Cee was with me for advice on how to take a photo with water like this. This great egret was fairly unconcerned about me as I shifted from place to place, trying to decide what to do about the reflection. Perhaps I blew my opportunity with the bird, but all I could see was that upside-down world. And yeah, I should use my fancy-schmancy camera and not my iPhone.
My grandfather, a coal miner from Yorkshire, used to sing this song to my sister and me:
Daisy, Daisy, Give me your answer, do.I’m half crazy all for the love of you. It won’t be a stylish marriage, ’cause I can’t afford a carriage. But you’ll look sweet upon the seat of a bicycle built for two!
My young brain was imprinted on daisies and they have long been one of my favorite wildflowers. BUT perhaps what I loved was not a daisy! Horrors! As I have roamed the neighborhood, I’ve snapped these photos of delightful ‘daisies.’ My PictureThis app has corrected all my misconceptions. Kind of.
I still think the purple coneflower should be called a white cone flower. And whether or not they’re daisies, I love ’em all!
It’s been eons since I last posted; I hope all of you are well and making it through these tough times! My next-to-oldest great-nephew keeps asking me what I would do for a million bucks. I do remember those days when it seemed like the most spectacular thing ever to get $1,000,000. Or to get ‘all the money in the world.’ Now I know what true riches are, so I will share my Ten Things of Thankful (TToT) blogging challenge with you out of a truly grateful heart.
#1 I am thankful for my dearest teaching widower (DTW). He continues his treatment for cancer and is such a warrior. I thought this nightmarish ‘cure’ might cause him to stumble, to become impatient, to change who he is. But he is still the loving-est DTW in the world. That counts for about 5 TToTs. Or about $1,000,000.
#2 I am thankful for our dearest son and his most precious wife. Matthew has endured much with a 5-year-long health struggle, going from triathlete to incapacitated to nearly incapacitated. And he has started a blog (please check it out!)! While his chronology of the illness is heart wrenching, it’s also filled with faith that comes from trusting in the Lord through desperate times. I’d say this special couple are worth at least $1,000,000.
#3, #4, #5 Special families and kids, Cadbury chocolate, and vegan chocolate cakes still rank high on my list! Although I haven’t hiked outside since summer weather took root, I’ve savored the photos I took. Cee‘s awesome photographic influence is easily worth a cool mil. (Be sure to check out her blog, too!). I’ve never met a plant I didn’t want to photograph!
#6 Of course, the kiddos keep us on our toes and give God plenty of issues in my heart to work on, with impatience being at the top of my list. But who wouldn’t enjoy being asked if I would wear a KKK robe for a million dollars? That question is followed by shrieks of glee: I should want to be in the Kool Kids Klub. Yikes. Glad we are quarantined or they’d be stoned!
#7 Tea is right up there with chocolate. Tetley’s is my fave. The caffeine kinda makes up for my lack of sleep. Sorta. Perhaps. Not so much.
#8 Now that I have cracked through the Blogging Barrier Reef, I am excited to catch up on others’ blogs! Yay! (I really don’t like that spelling but my use of yea always gets misread as yeah, so meh….)
#9 I love to watch the birds who visit our feeders and bath. A robin just finished a thorough soaking and sat fluffed up on the edge, drying off. So sweet. OK, not so fascinating to everyone. The hawks? They love it. Totally grateful. Yum yum.
#10 Last but not least are you, my dearest readers, who continue to follow this blog. I’m grateful!
As much as I loved spring, with its vibrant flowers and fragrances, the beginning of summer is great for flowering weeds, not so great for long walks. We’re talking about major sweating here- and the temps are still moderate for this time of year. I guess 6-foot distancing is best since I look like I have a dripping fever.
The weed below is a Carolina horse nettle. My dearest teaching widower would be proud that I didn’t touch it!
Magnolia trees are not weeds, but since I DO grab sniff all the lowest blossoms, I must include this gorgeous one. The flowers of this ancient plant do not have true petals. In fact, this early flowering giant has been around for 36+ million years! I guess the above blossom may be a fossil in the making. I do love to see the stamen, lying there like candy matchsticks. Truly delish!
Cee has posted terrific photos on the hunt for joy challenge: start a garden. Don’t miss her amazing collection of flowers and plants (indoors and out). I recently downloaded the Picture This app for identifying the delightful flowers I’ve enjoyed on my walks through the neighborhood.
I’ve taken scads of photos on my wanderings, secretively discretely snapping photos of folk’s yards and stopping to capture images of gorgeous wild flowers on the trails. So many outdoor gardens, so little time.
If you’re curious about plants, looking for something to do, or have kids who enjoy scavenger hunts/collections, this app is a handy dandy tool!
What a difference a week makes! This is Day 6 of the president’s 15 stay-at-home protocol. I’ve been walking through neighborhoods, moving aside as many families hike the trails near our house.
The majority of folks are careful about keeping their distance, but I was unhappy to see a very small playground full of about 20 kiddos and parents. Yes, it was nice to hear laughter but even if those folks have no symptoms, they can be shedding the virus. Since most folks are fine if they contract this coronavirus, I’m not so much worried about them as I am the increasing spread of this virus.
Many folks are supporting our community of workers and small businesses who are greatly affected by the shut-downs and restrictions. One local business that has brought thousands of laughs and songs to our community is Balloons And Tunes. When we first moved to North Carolina, I was delighted when they showed up to celebrate special occasions. I’ve used them multiple times for math manipulatives, such as collections of miniature pigs and globes. Since no one is celebrating widely right now, a member of one neighborhood purchased balloons for EVERY house! What a delight to walk through a neighborhood festooned with balloons!
After such a terrific time with relatives in Florida, it was hard to leave. I walked the Orlando airport to get my fitbit steps, exposing myself to folks hacking and sneezing into their hands. Yikes, folks. Use your arm!
I did see a coterie of stunning women, all in a line, heading for service as flight attendants. If my dearest teaching widower had not been working on his paper, seated in a galaxy far away, he’d have told me to put my phone down. But I couldn’t resist.
On the flight home, a passenger next to us coughed into the air unceasingly. Our front yard was filled with dozens of flags and spray paint, like someone planned to excavate every buried pipe and cable. Our house ‘smart thermostats’ had reverted to 49 degrees, which was a real shock to our systems (and I got very grumpy). I caught a nasty bug and was bedridden. When I graduated to the couch, I tripped over my computer cord and fell really hard, smashing a dish and landing on two body parts that had already survived surgery: my knee and shoulder.
BUT, the trip was fabulous and we can’t wait to return!
My dearest teaching widower (DTW) and I were really spoiled on our Florida trip. Our Sunshine relatives made this such a memorable time.
The Sun Rail was a delight! A three-story light rail with great views and touristy places to visit. It’s too bad that our local (North Carolina) light rail plan was such a dud. The GoTriangle organization spent $190 million and still needed $237 million plus a change of heart from Duke University/Carolina Railroad. The project was abandoned last May. Ah, well.