Saturday, September 14, 2019

Ten Things of Thankful

Our host for the Ten Things of Thankful blog hop has opened the link so let's put on our thinking caps and make a list, or share your "thankfuls" in whatever fashion works best for you. Kristi, of Thankful Me, is the host, but she has the help of several co-hosts (Clark, Dyanne, Lisa and myself).


 

1. Rain
Although one afternoon this week was accompanied with constant thunder rumblings and lightning off in the distance, the end result was a gully washer down our lane and a good soaking to Mother Earth.

2. Wood splitters
Some friends brought their wood splitter over a couple of times this week and split a lot of the logs piled up from the recent labors of the arbor company. We appreciate that they had the use of such a machine that makes quick work of an otherwise arduous task. We are also glad that they can use some of the wood to heat their home.


The pile of logs that were waiting
to be split

3. Lunches and dinners with friends

4. The touch of a hand
During one of my visits to the nursing home this week, a resident shared with me that the touch of my mom’s hand on her hand reminded her of her own mom’s hands. When I thanked her for telling me that, and that I was glad she had that memory, she smiled through tear filled eyes, and said “Me too.”

Mom resting with her hands in
her lap

5. No broken bone, just a bruise
On one of the days when I was helping with the wood splitting, my foot got in the way of one of the split logs. Although it got my attention, I am thankful to just have colorful toe rather than a broken one.

6. Zoster (shingles) vaccine
My husband and I got the first of our Zoster shots this week. Even though we had the live shingles vaccine several years ago, we learned that it was advised to get this newer type of vaccine which isn’t a live virus and is better. When I was 12, I got a very bad case of the chickenpox. When I was an adult, I got an extremely mild case of the shingles on my abdomen, but you can get shingles more than once without the vaccine! I know two older people whose vision was permanently affected due to getting shingles in their eyes, so if your doctor advises you to get the vaccine, it is good to take that advice.

7. The dirty clothes hampers were empty when the dryer started squealing
Realizing the dryer will be repaired by the time more loads will to be done is another thankful.

8. Talking over the fence with neighbors and having such nice neighbors

9. Farm stands
I’m enjoying these last few weeks of getting produce at a local farm stand before they close for the season.


When the asters start blooming you know
summer is fading

10. SAGE
Although I do like the herb sage, SAGE (Self-Administered Gerocognitive Exam) is a great way to do a quick screen for dementia. Doing good on the home front. Yeah for that. 



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Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Six Sentence Stories - Cardinal

Through the blogging sphere (thanks Lisa), I have learned a little about tanka poems so I have decided to veer from my usual style of writing this week at Six Sentence Stories - Cardinal. Denise of Girlie on the Edge's Blog is the host of this blog hop. In a nutshell, the goal is to use the prompt word in a story written in just six sentences. 


I heard the whistle
of the cardinal calling
but I hurried on 
until I paused at sunset
to bask in the crimson hues

Why had I not stopped
and looked up through the branches
but I missed the chance
to listen reverently
and commune with God’s creature

My thoughts had buffered
nature’s melodious sounds
which could have lifted
my spirit had I allowed
and meditated therein

I scanned the tree’s limbs
hoping for a glimpse of red
but the day was gone
the opportunity missed
and darkness settled o’er me

Waking to the birds
chirping to welcome the morn’
I heard their message
in the new beautiful day
what’s done is done carry on

I heard the whistle
of the cardinal calling
but this day was new
so I stopped looked and listened
savoring the occasion


Saturday, September 7, 2019

Ten Things of Thankful

This week has been a whirlwind of activity and I am glad to be able to step away from the activity for a few moments to reflect and share a few things for which I am grateful. Thanks to Kristi of Thankful Me I am able to join with others who have found the benefit of giving thanks for those things, events, and people who have touched their lives and made their own existence more meaningful. I am linking this post to the blog hop, Ten Things of Thankful hosted by Kristi.  Clark, Dyanne, Lisa and myself are co-hosts. If you decide that you want to jump on board and share your ten things of thankful, you can link your post at any of our sites where we have posted our Ten Things of Thankful for this week. The link opens on Friday and closes on Tuesday.



1. Yearly physicals
Most people recognize the importance of tune-ups for their automobiles, but unfortunately seeing a physician for yearly physicals sometimes can be put on the back burner. I am thankful that I am able to get yearly physicals and have health insurance.

2. Being able to be of help and also being recipients of help
Sometimes it is the simple things that are needed, just a helping hand, or another viewpoint, or energy when one's own is lacking. I am thankful that we were able to be on the giving end and well as on the receiving end this week.

3. Those who either don’t have a fear of working in high places or have overcome their fears
The arborists were here most of the day cutting down our old maple tree that was dying and had been severely damaged by a lightning and thunder storm this summer. I am thankful that they were able to stay safe as they cut down the tree that had grown from the sapling we had planted into a very large shade tree.

4. My mother’s beautiful peaceful expression when I visited her one day this week in the nursing home, and the squeeze of her hand on mine (#Alzheimer's)
When these rare moments happen, I treasure them with all my heart.

5. Fresh peach milkshake
On the way back from visiting my mother, I stopped and treated myself to a fresh peach milkshake. The peaches tasted like they had just been picked from the trees!


6. Dollies
Having the availability of a dolly when unloading a truck full of boxes made all the difference in the world when helping someone move.

7. Very large dumpsters
There is a time and a place when paying for a company to bring a large dumpster to a site is exactly what is needed and can save a lot of time and extra trips to the local refuse collection center. I am glad our friends were able to take advantage of this resource this week.

8. Sites that not only accept used clothing for resale purposes or to give to those in need, but will also recycle used clothing that is unacceptable for resale because of its wear and tear
Having this resource makes me feel like I am doing my part to in a small way save our planet. It is also nice to have some extra space in the clothes closet.

9. New shoes
My most  comfortable running shoes (in my case walking shoes) had begun to irritate one of my toes. Probably ten years ago, I found a shoe brand that seemed to be made just for me, because it was so comfortable. I have been a devoted purchaser of that shoe ever since, so I was surprised when my toe started to hurt while wearing the shoes. Upon investigating the inside of the shoe I discovered that after two years of wear, the lining had begun to separate and roll and rub on my toe. Getting new shoes was an easy fix for my problem.

10. Family on this side of the veil as well as family on the other side of the veil
My mother came from a very large family. My father was from a small family. The families of their ancestors were large in comparison to many of the families today. I have come to "know" many of the individuals in these families through the records that I have been able to uncover and through the memories of older relatives I corresponded with over my life span. There are times when the veil feels very thin and those who have departed feel extremely close.  The feeling is one of immense love. Have you ever experienced this type of closeness to your departed loved ones?



Autumn is almost here. The crocuses are
blooming.



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Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Six Sentence Stories - Zone

While I do enjoy times of laughter and excitement and even look forward to them, I tend to need time to refresh in a quiet place to rejuvenate after those action-packed hours, days, or weeks. For that reason, I appreciate having a place to do that. What is your favorite zone?

Denise of The Girlie on the Edge's Blog is waiting for us to link up to the blog hop Six Sentence Stories - Zone. The link is open through Tuesday. Every week she gives us a new cue to use in our stories. 



Their Swiss chalet style home featured noise-proof rooms which were not surprising considering Julia’s distaste for all the noises in the large city. 

The onset of the machine age with all its inventions brought with it a din such as Julia could never have imagined in her childhood.

She wasn’t going to sit back and do nothing to try to curb it, so she founded The Society for the Suppression of Unnecessary Noise, and even organized a children’s branch of the society.

Those confined to hospital beds and needing peace and quiet to recover appreciated her efforts to create a quiet zone near them.

The tugboat operators no doubt didn’t appreciate her efforts to silence them by getting her congressman to push a bill through Congress to regulate their unnecessary whistles to one another that disrupted people’s sleep.

Julia Barnett Rice saw a need where she lived in New York City, and her decision to do something started to spread across the nation long before the term noise pollution was commonly used.

Friday, August 30, 2019

Ten Things of Thankful

I'm keeping it simple this week here at Ten Things of Thankful. This weekly blog hop hosted by Kristi of Thankful Me gives the participants a chance to reflect on things for which they are thankful and write about them. That can be done as simply as listing them or, if desired, expounding on them in more detail. The most important thing to my way of thinking is the act of ruminating about those people, things, and experiences that are meaningful in our lives. There is value in both remembering and in sharing. 

I am linking my post to Ten Things of Thankful. To make it easy for readers to navigate to other posts the co-hosts besides myself are Clark, Dyanne, and Lisa. Those who post at TToT will show up at the bottom of my page as well as our host and the other co-hosts. Just click on the images and it will take you to their posts. 





1. Tree-lined paths, lanes and roads
For many years we had a painting in our home that was of a country road with trees on either side of the road. From the color of the leaves, the season was either late summer of early fall. Looking at the painting was very calming to me. 


Gravel lane lined with filbert, oak and fir trees


2. Hills
We live in a very diverse state as far as topography is concerned. I have grown to appreciate these differences, but having lived the majority of my youth on property that was hilly, that was my first love. Being able to live with hills surrounding us and yet drive on roads through flat farmlands almost daily is a delight to the eye.


Hilly rural area, with the furthest hill rising
higher than the two in the foreground

3. Orchards
The orderliness of orchards is something I appreciate. Being able to see examples of this in nature is especially appreciated when other aspects of life may feel out of control at times.


A view of an orchard of young walnut trees
 on a sunny day with billows of white clouds
in the blue sky overhead 

4. Blue sky
My favorite colors are blue or blue/green hues, so being able to look up at a big blue sky has a very tranquil effect on me.

5. Finding solutions to problems, and the encouragement of others in overcoming the challenge
People are not the only ones who have challenges. When I was taking some photos outside today, I heard some noises behind me. When I turned around, I saw the wild hen turkey and her two youngsters who are now no longer chicks, but nearing the jake and jenny stage of their lives. The hen was on top of a fence railing and promptly flew down to our neighbor's property. The youngsters got flustered and ended up still being on our side of the fence. One of them shortly discovered he could squeeze through one of the sections of wiring. The other one just couldn't seem to figure out what to do and scurried back and forth in front of the fence. The hen walked further away from the fence, while the sibling acted very concerned about the separation as shown by its actions (ruffling of feathers, repeatedly rushing toward the fence and then running away from the fence, and touching the beak of the sibling through the space in the wiring). Several times the one on our side tried to squeeze through one of spaces in the wiring, but would try to expand its wings which just made it impossible to go forward and then it had to back out. This scene went on for about 10 minutes, before the separated turkey was able to figure it out and be reunited. 


Turkey hen and her two youngsters
touching beaks through the fence

6. Natural soil aeration
The gophers seem to think it is all up to them to aerate the soil this summer. When a flicker was standing on one of the gopher mounds this week, I think a gopher may have snagged one of the bird's feet. The flicker appeared to be struggling to lift off from the ground, but finally took flight.


Gopher mounds (or natural soil aeration)

7. Fruit in season
This isn't a heavy crop year for the apples, but then again it is hard to say, since the deer are such frequent visitors to our trees.


Two apples on the tree that the deer
couldn't reach

8. Old trees
Does anyone else get attached to trees? I am going to miss this old tree. It is scheduled to be cut down next month because it is dying.  A few extremely old apple trees used to be on one of the neighboring properties. I loved seeing those old  trees in the different seasons of the year and was sad to see them taken out.



Trunk of old maple tree

9. Hospice services
As of this week my mom has started receiving hospice care in the nursing home where she lives and already I can see what a blessing this is for her to have their services in addition to the help of the nursing home staff. 


10. Memories
My mom's mother had red hair and was told she had some Irish ancestry. I remember my mom telling me that her mother loved the song Danny Boy. I hope you enjoy this rendition too.



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Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Six Sentence Stories - Howl

Wednesday is the day before the link opens for the Six Sentence Stories blog hop, so it is time to get creative. I hope you will share your stories too, written with only six sentences, of  course. Denise, of Girlie on the Edge's Blog will thank you. As the host of this blog hop, she gets things rolling. Click here to read other Six Sentence Stories - Howl.



Outside, the wind battered against the weathered shingles of the home that had endured many storms both outside and in.

The outer turbulence increased as the hours passed  during the night that seemed to never end, and she wished that she had been able to retrieve the bird feeders, but they were gone from sight when dawn finally approached, as was the storm.

Hanging and maintaining feeders had brought solace to her mind and had given her something simple to focus on when the world as she had once known it had suddenly fallen apart several years earlier.

The howl of life seemed to intensify and was almost more than she could bear during the years that followed, but with time her heart healed and the pains associated with that day began to dissipate.

A loud rapping on the door forced her to move, to shift her thoughts away from that which had lain buried.

As she opened the squeaky screen door, her neighbor smiled and said, “Aggie, I found these bird feeders in my yard and I just knew these had to be yours.”

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Ten Things of Thankful

The last week and a half I was missing in action from blogging due to getting ready for a trip and then being on a trip, but I had  a thankful heart nevertheless. Kristi, of Thankful Me, who is the host of the blog hop Ten Things of Thankful, invited me to spend a week with her at BYU's Education Week. Thankfully things worked out for me to take her up on the offer and my husband kept things going while I was away. A big thanks to him! Not only is Kristi a great host of this blog hop, she is a great daughter and hostess! Be sure to click the link to read what others are sharing this week, and while you are at it, take a minute to reflect on what has brought you joy, or made you smile, or just made you feel glad to be alive. 



1. BYU Education Week
Although I attended a different university than Brigham Young University when I was young, and I didn't belong to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at that time, I am very grateful that as a middle-aged adult I began attending Education Weeks and have benefited from the instruction I receive each summer I attend. 

2. Musicals
One evening, after a busy day of attending Education Week classes, we attended a SCERA musical production of The Beauty and the Beast held on campus. It was fantastic, and I continue to be amazed by talents of youth and adults in the performing arts.

3. Shaved snow
While I have eaten snow cones, and shaved ice, I had never experienced shaved snow! This was not only delicious, but a feast for the eyes! 


Pina Colada shaved snow
4. Families that sing together, such as The Bonner Family, and who share their talents with others. 
Janice Kapp Perry, one of the presenters at Education Week, invited the Bonners to perform during her presentation. Their enthusiasm, talent, and testimony was a blessing to all in attendance.

5. The man on the airplane  who lifted my carry-on bag up into the overhead compartment for me.
I appreciated his help, and it did not go unnoticed by the flight attendant who was impressed that he performed the same act of service for two others who boarded after I did.

Fountains and flowers in front of one
 of the buildings on the BYU campus

A kind heart is a fountain of gladness, making everything in its vicinity freshen into smiles.
---Washington Irving (1783-1859)

6. Being in the right position to avoid a mishap
When I was walking down the ramp to board the airplane, a baggage handler was pushing a large cart loaded with baggage and was approaching behind me. All was well until I heard the tumbling of suitcases behind me. I was glad the cart wasn't any closer than it was, or I possible would have been struck off balance by one of the tumbling pieces of baggage.

7. Being able to see the humor of losing by a mile
Part of the fun of being with family is playing a few games. My daughter and her husband were neck in neck for having the fewest points, the object of this particular game. Then there was my score. LOL

Two players are almost tied to
win the game, but their two scores
added together was still quite a bit
less than my total losing score.
8. The beautiful scent of roses
My son-in-law worked hard a few months ago to prepare a place for Kristi to be able to have a rose garden. The roses they planted are now in bloom and the scent of Ebbtide is like perfume on a stem. 

A closeup of a magenta colored
Ebbtide rose blossom held by my
 thumb and index finger 
9. Those who worked hard to put out a fire burning over 6,000 acres in Utah a few days ago
The smell of smoke was in the air one morning and the blue sky was hazy from the smoke over the valley. I am thankful that the fire was contained and the sky was clear and blue again the morning I would be flying home.

Houses in the foreground, with
Utah Lake and mountain range
in the background and a beautiful
blue sky above

10. Sunflowers
I loved seeing all the sunflowers in bloom in Utah. (In our area, those from out-of-state have often remarked about the beautiful Scotch broom plants in bloom, not knowing that they are an invasive plant here.) As far as I know at least sunflowers are not invasive plants and the birds seem to love them.


A wild sunflower in bloom with a
yellow blossom a little broader than
the span of an adult hand



Besides myself, Clark, Dyanne and Lisa are co-hosts. 



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