Saturday, July 14, 2018

Ten Things of Thankful

The interesting thing about reading the posts written for the Ten Things of Thankful blog hop is the variety of items mentioned each week by the other participants. It not only does me good to write my own thoughts on this subject, but it is helpful for me to read what others share. Be sure to click the link that will take you to Kristi's site. She is our host who spurs us on each week, but actually she just gives us a gentle reminder and plenty of time to link up. We have from Friday to Tuesday to link up, in case our weekends don't allow much writing time.

1. Pureed food. When I was a baby, I was told that the first food I had other than milk was pablum. The amount of water or milk that was mixed with it determined its consistency. Depending on one's state of health, it may become necessary to eat pureed food, which in many ways has the viscosity of pablum. I am thankful for the kitchen staff at the nursing home where mom is living, because they puree the food for her to eat. The food prepared this way is much easier for her to swallow than the mechanical soft diet she had been eating. (Note: Sometimes people with Alzheimer's reach a point where they don't realize they are hungry and they forget how to chew and how to swallow.)

2. Documentaries. My husband and I went to see a documentary about the life of Mr. Rogers this week. I have only positive memories about the influence of the Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood television show upon young children. It is impossible to watch this show without wishing there was another Mr. Rogers spreading goodness on TV and in the world.

3. The joy that families feel when they see each other again after a separation.  

4. Tests that individuals can take and then know of steps they can take to avoid the escalation of disease. We are fortunate to live in a day and age when this is possible.

5. The person who cut my hair this week and cut it just how I wanted it even though I was terrible describing the style. I have her card, so I will be asking for her next time.

6. Spotted fawns. Who doesn't enjoy seeing little spotted twin fawns in their yard?

7. Firefighters. The temperatures have shot up near 100 degrees this week, and so we have had forest fires in our state once again. This time there has been one at a very popular state park. I'm thankful those camping and hiking in the area were able to be evacuated safely.

8. Friendly husband and friendly hummingbirds.

Husband feeding a hummingbird

9. Early morning coolness before the heat of the day arrives. A cool breeze blowing through the curtains at the start of day is such welcome in the summertime.

10. Networks of family, friends, and friends of friends who can come to the aid of someone they don't even know. Someone I know had a need this week, and through the networks of many, a solution was found. I'm so grateful for not only these many networks, but for the means we have to quickly find solutions.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Finish the Sentence Friday - Listicle -Ten things I've done that I can't/won't do again

It has been a few weeks since I have linked up to Kristi Campbell's blog hop over at Finding Ninee. She has been moving to another state, but now we are once again able to do a bit a writing for her blog hop, Finish the Sentence Friday - Listicle - Ten things I've done that I can't/won't do again. Actually Kristi hosts along with Kenya G. Johnson of Sporadically Yours as co-host. The Listicle posts are one of my favorite writing challenges at this blog hop. Be sure to click the link to see how others have approached the writing challenge this week.

1. Ride in the open bed of a pickup truck. It is hard to believe that this was once considered a safe thing to do, in this day and age when seat belts are required to be worn inside vehicles.

2. Stand on my head. I never did this very well, even when I could do it.

3. Jog. While there are family members who embrace this activity, I could only do it for short distances, very short. After a recent test report, I now know not to do it. Walking is fine, jogging is not.

4. Travel while holding a white rat in a shoe box placed on my lap. That is a story for another time.

5. Have a conversation with my mother. She is in the late stages of Alzheimer's and cannot hear or speak much at all. Even writing with a large marking tool on my iPad is no longer as efficacious. 

6. Try to sunbathe on the beach or anywhere else. I never was one to do much of this, but protecting my skin from the harm of the sun's rays is doctor's orders.

7. Sing a solo. As I remember, I have only sung one solo, and that was years ago. Now I don't even sing with a choir due to what seems to be an allergy related cough.

8. Get a permanent. My mother gave me a permanent when I was in the sixth grade. That was enough of that for me. I had slightly curly hair then, and the home permanent she gave me turned my curls into what would have been considered tight Orphan Annie curls. That was not the style then.

9. Walk on a balance beam that is four feet from the floor. Although I could trepidatiously do this once, you will not see me doing this on a YouTube video proving what an older lady can do, rather can't do.

10. Ride a bike. While I can still get on and off a stationary bike, it would be best to just walk alongside a bike outdoors, and what fun is that!

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Six Sentence Stories - Explain

As one ages, memories may be like rolling stones picking up moss and debris which are manifested as partial truths while at the same time knocking off some of the edges once felt as deep wounds but now with scars barely seen, if at all. Imagination is not only displayed in the mind of a child, but can continue way into the twilight years of life. 

Once a week, Denise of Girlie on the Edge's Blog offers us a place to link our stories, whether based on truth, partial truth, or from our imagination. I am linking this post to Six Sentence Stories - Explain. If you feel so inclined, write a story using only six sentences with the prompt word explain in it and click the link to share your story any time before Tuesday evening. Whether you decide to join in with this writing challenge or not, just click the link to spend a few minutes to read some short stories.

She hung her head, not knowing exactly what she should say, although deep down she did know. In her first conversation with him, ever, he had asked if it had happened. 

She knew it was a lie, but why was she not able to speak up and tell him. Did she have a fear of not being believed, or was it the shock of hearing such a thing being said about her. 

How was she to know at such a young age that it would have been better for her to explain that there was not an ounce of truth in the statement, rather than not saying anything. 

Standing up for the truth about others and for herself was a lesson she would learn one painful experience at a time until she found her voice.

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Ten Things of Thankful

It is tee off time, even though I don't golf. I decided to make use of the letter "T" for this post at the Ten Things of Thankful blog hop moderated by Kristi of Thankful Me. She is the most recent moderator, having followed some amazing past moderators. She is the one who provides the link up and the encouragement to share those things for which we are thankful. By clicking on the link here you will be taken to her site where you can  click the links of others who are sharing this week. By the way, you don't have  to write 10 things each week. More or less is just fine. Even if you don't link up, I hope just reading some of the posts will put you in the mood of thankfulness. It is a great habit to embrace.

These are written in no particular order of importance.

1. Trimming. Whether it was trimming long runners on blackberry vines or trimming my Mom's fingernails, both brought a degree of accomplishment this week.

2. Tools. Having the right tools to do the job and having the strength to use them, or in some instances the strength of my husband to do the job. The following clip is a beautiful example of using a tool and working together as a team to create beautiful music. Note: My husband and I did not create music with our saw and the shovel.

3. Teamwork. Some jobs are just easier when there are two people, or more to do them. My husband and I worked together as a team in accomplishing several outdoor tasks this week. He did the harder part of the jobs, but what I did was just as needed. Although the picture below, titled Working in the Field, isn't one of my husband and I working together, it is an example of a father, or perhaps a grandfather, and boy working together. It reminds me of times when my father taught me how to  sow seeds, and how to harvest asparagus, etc.

Click here to see source.

4. Tractor. Having a small tractor was an important purchase we decided make many years ago, and to this day, we appreciate what we are able to do with it. We live on a little over three acres of land,  so yes, a tractor is helpful.

5. Trees. Having trees where we can take shelter from the hot sun and where we feel cool breezes which their limbs and leaves stir up
is a blessing.

6. Travel. Driving through farm lands to attend a function where we remembered and celebrated a friend who passed away a few months back; traveling through different areas of farmlands to make visits to see my mom in the nursing home.

Wheat fields almost ready to harvest

7. Twilight. The later twilight hours of summer are so beautiful and relaxing.

8. Talking with friends. Visiting and talking with a friend one evening when she stopped by after work. Although there have been some texts at different times, it has been a while since we've visited with each other in person.

9. Time. We are all given time, but deciding how we use our time is up to us. I'm thankful for the time I have, and for the challenge of using it wisely.

10. Tenacity. I saw this being shared on the internet this week. Little Maya Tisdale has so much tenacity, and the joy she expresses with her accomplishment is marvelous! Can you feel how much joy she is feeling at being able to walk by herself? May we all remember to be thankful for those things that may come so easily to us. This clip was shared on ABC News on July 4.


Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Six Sentence Stories - Exhaust

The smell of fireworks in the air may have initiated the cue for Denise's Six Sentence Stories - Exhaust. I suppose those who provide a prompt word for a weekly blog hop such as this could become exhausted from the responsibilities of being the the host or hostess, because there is more involved than just providing a single word around which said participants compose a story. 

I appreciate Denise's willingness to be here each week for all those waiting with bated breath each Sunday to see what challenge she will give us. That gives us plenty of time to get our short (only six sentences) stories written and linked to her site at Girlie on the Edge's Blog on Thursday or any time through the following Tuesday. That is plenty of time! The reason we link up is so people can go to her site and quickly click on the links of the other writers and read their stories. Easy peasy!

Being suddenly jarred awake from the impact of the car hitting a pothole, she rubbed her eyes and slid over on the vinyl car seat to glance out the side window. 

The seat wasn't quite long enough for she and her brother to truly be comfortably reclined and sleep through the night while their parents took turns driving.

All she saw were stars in the sky and every once in a while a sliver of the moon whenever there was a break in the dense old-growth forest.

The narrow two-lane highway seemed to follow the curves of the river below on the other side, and with each turn of the car, her body tilted first this way and then that.

After what seemed to be hours of following a logging truck, they began to be leaving the forest and were at the outskirts of a small community where they were greeted by a tall metal rusty-red glowing conical shaped structure which was broad at the base and rounded at the top.

What were they burning and why, she wondered as she stared at the exhaust which was mixed with small red debris swirling upward from the brilliant flames that could be seen through the screens at the top.

Wigwam Burner
Courtesy of the
 National Archives Catalog

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Ten Things of Thankful

For those living in the USA, this is the weekend leading up to Independence Day, or July 4. Some people are already gathering with family and friends to celebrate and remember the date our nation was declared an independent nation. This has been a wonderful week in many ways and has caused me to reflect and to be grateful. Check out Kristi's Ten Things of Thankful site to see what others are linking to this blog hop.

1. Faith of the forefathers of this nation. They sacrificed so much to establish this nation.

2. Fresh corn on the cob. Somehow I associate eating corn on the cob with July 4th! This week I bought some that was a new variety for us to try, even though I didn't realize that when I bought several ears at the grocery store. Imagine my surprise when I husked them and found that the kernels were dark to very pale yellow. 

3. Many hands make light work. John Heywood, an English writer, collected proverbs, and this is one that he included in The Proverbs and Epigrams of John Heywood. This week a group of women from church came to tackle some much needed weeding in one of our shrub beds. A few brought their children along to help.  The weeding has gotten away from me for several reasons these past few years. Their service to us certainly lifted my spirit.

How this part of the shrub bed looked
 before the weeding
How the same part of the shrub bed looked
after the weeding

4. The creativity, strength and energy of youth.

Gardening chopstick style to move stump.
5. Potential fruit yield.

Wild Himalayan blackberries


Wild Cascade blackberries


6. Those who share their time, talents and means to minister to the needs and wishes of others. Besides the huge weeding that was done in our shrub bed, a neighbor took time to pick some fresh garden produce for us.

7. Cloud formations. I saw these unusual clouds today.

I think these are lenticular clouds.

8. Talented musicians. I only recently discovered this gifted artist, Jamie Dupuis, who plays an 18 string harp guitar. There is a lot of his work on youtube. Enjoy.

9. Energy. I am thankful for those days when I seem to have more energy and it is only on those days that I become aware of how much that has been lacking on some of the other days. It feels so good to have the old me back when the energy is there!

10. My husband and our family. My heart is tied to theirs.  

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Six Sentence Stories - Manner

Most times I know what I am going to write, at least the general story, before I begin to formulate my words. This time I only had a thought, but not a story, so I just began to compose to see what would happen. 

My end result is being posted here because it is written in only six sentences and that is the challenge that Denise of Girlie on the Edge gives us each week. Click her blog hop challenge to read other stories written for Six Sentence Stories - Manner. You will be glad you did.


He was "in the moment" and feeling tired, but a good tired, after having tackled the tractor problem and then mowing the large natural lawn, a mixture of grass and weeds.  As they walked together over the shortened vegetation, she glanced toward a large unweeded shrub bed and said in all sincerity, "It looks pretty good from a distance."

She always seemed to have a to-do list, whether written on paper or in her mind, and could quickly move out of the moment they were in, admittedly not one of her best characteristics. Unfortunately those enumerations were sometimes taken as items of dissatisfaction and things he thought she expected him to do.

After years of togetherness it had become second nature for him to sense a little of what she was thinking in the back of her head even if her "wife speak" didn't say that. For the most part his manner of interpretation worked pretty well, except for the times when it didn't, and she needed to tack on an addendum to clarify the intentions of her words and her heart.