Monday, July 30, 2018

RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #212 Sates&Fuels

Weekly haiku challenges proposed by Ronovan Hester offers me a chance to engage in these short poetry attempts. The following link will get you to the guidelines for participating and will also enable you to see the links to the other haiku shared using the prompt words this week. RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #212 Sates&Fuels.

like a tinderbox
trees glazed with pitch fuels and sates
explosive fireballs

tawdry ambitions
with lies words fuel and sate
poisonous discourse

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Ten Things of Thankful

Heat has been a subject that has been on the minds of many in our area, or trying to escape the heat maybe. However, in spite of the weather, life goes on and life is what we make it or make of it. With that in mind, I am going to focus on some thankful items for my Ten Things of Thankful post which I am linking to Kristi's Ten Things of Thankful blog hop. I hope that you will join me and others in this weekly endeavor. Just click the link to see what things are being mentioned this week. Are some of them things you would  consider thankful items in your life?

1. The moon. When visiting our son and his family, he got out his telescope so we could look at the full moon and also look for Mars. I took the photo of the moon with my camera by focusing on image seen through the eye piece of his telescope. We also looked at Mars, because it was "Opposition Day."

2. Cool morning to travel. With day after day of very hot weather and knowing we would be driving for six hours, we decided to get an early start in order to avoid some of the road construction delays and maybe be able to arrive at our destination before the hottest part of the day. It was quite pleasant and even nicer to have unexpected cloudy weather during four hours of the trip!

3. Multi-POV (point of view of a Six Sentence Stories post). I'm thankful that I was able to participate in a writing challenge offered by Clark at the Wakefield Doctrine site. This caused me to stretch my writing wings in a new way.

4. Encouragement from other writers. There is something about encouragement or praise that makes people try harder to live up to what they think others see in them.

5. Getting a little taste of what it means to find out "who" a character in your story is. 

6. Getting a free kindle book that a friend recommended to me. Wonderful Adventures of Mrs. Seacole in Many Lands is a fascinating and entertaining read. It is her autobiography and was written in 1857. It has been said of her that she was "the black Florence Nightingale."

7. Yellowjacket traps. Yes, I really am. The traps keep these  pesky wasps from greeting us as we enter our home, and the birds can enjoy getting drinks without having to share with the yellowjackets. For some reason the yellowjackets like to make their homes under the shingles or above the front door.

8. A first experience. Yesterday my husband and I went to a car show with our son. (I'm not sure how we made it to our ages without having ever attended an old car show.) It was Old Settlers Weekend, and one of the events was a display of old cars. The car below was in like-new condition with only 1900 miles on it. The owner even let me sit in it.

1931 Ford

 9. Being able see a theatrical performance that a couple of our granddaughters were in and to listen to the farewell talk of one of our grandsons who will soon be leaving on a mission to Buenos Aires, Argentina.

10. Another new week ahead. That means we are alive and it is a clean slate to use it however we wish and to make the most of it. Yeah! I hope to see you hear next week.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Finish the Sentence Friday - A Photo and the Story Behind It

This blog hop gets me reviewing my photos looking for one that strikes my fancy, and stirs up some words among my brain waves.

Thanks to our host, Kristi Campbell of Finding Ninee, and co-host, Kenya G. Johnson of Sporadically Yours those taking part in the weekly blog hop, Finish the Sentence Friday, get to share a photo on the fourth Friday of the month. Click Finish the Sentence Friday - A Photo and the Story Behind It to see what other photos and stories are being shared this week. 

Three katahdin lambs

The words that came to mind were from a favorite childhood nursery rhyme, except in this case the words are not a true reflection of the purpose of raising these sheep. Katahdin sheep have hair on their bodies instead of wool, and naturally shed their hair after winter. The lambs are marketed for their meat.

Among this flock of sheep was a runt, one of triplets. (Sheep sometimes have twins, but triplets are rare.) It needed to be bottled fed for a while, and then another ewe sort of adopted it and let it nurse. It hung out with its siblings otherwise.

Alpacas or llamas often are kept within a flock of sheep as a protector of the lambs from dogs, foxes and/or birds of prey.

Have you ever eaten meat from a katahdin lamb?

Six Sentences Stories - Resort

Clark of Wakefield Doctrine extended the opportunity to me to participate in the multi-POV (point of view) six this week. This has been an interesting challenge of my abilities, or lack there of, but I appreciate is willingness to see what point of view I might give to one of the characters mentioned in his SSS-Resort this week.

Denise of Girlie on the Edge's blog, our host, provides the link to this blog hop each week. Click here to read the posts of others participating this week in the Six Sentence Stories - Resort. Being able to read the variety of stories shared at her site is both a learning experience and just plain enjoyable.


Today the tinkling of the small metal wind chimes above the entrance sounded abrasive to her ears as Miz Duquette's last visitor of the day, and in no way she could determine, a friend, headed toward her car.

Cindy reached down under the aged gauze curtain and removed the Open sign resting on the windowsill and called it a day, much earlier than usual, after being unnerved by the question posed by the stranger who had just departed.

Her long black hair, streaked with gray, brushed against the strings of crystal-like beads as she shuffled through the doorway from the Healing Room to her living quarters where she slowly plopped down in her recliner.

There was a time when the Healing Room, just big enough for a couple of comfortable well-used stuffed chairs and a small round knee-high table between them, had been used for business, but now that she lived by herself, and the years were creeping up on her, she decided to give up the business.

The Open sign was only there as an indication to those who passed by that she was up to having friends visit, many of whom had once gleaned her mind at the local botanical garden where she had volunteered as a resident self-taught herbalist.

She had half feared and half welcomed this day, the day of reckoning with that decision she had made in what seemed like another lifetime, before she resorted to move to the outskirts of the small burg of Dunsmuir where she felt she could hide from her indiscretion and impulsive act in Maumee, Ohio and also forget about the dangers that completely shook up her life in Mendocino.

Monday, July 23, 2018

RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #211Brain&Cleanse

If you enjoy writing haiku, come link up to Ronovan Hester's blog hop for a weekly haiku challenge. This week I am linking my post to RonovanWrites #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #211 Brain&Cleanse. He gives the guidelines for joining in with the challenge there, and you will also have a chance to click the links of those who have participated. 

I decided to write two haiku for this prompt.

tranquility came
when his brain began purging
clinging evil thoughts

lingering headache
cleansed my brain of other plans
and celebrations

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Ten Things of Thankful

Here are my summer thankfuls to be shared with you my readers who are arriving from the Ten Things of Thankful blog hop hosted by Kristi of Thankful Me. Of course others are welcome to peruse my list as well. I encourage as many as possible to enter this weekly blog hop and reap the joy that comes from remembering all that was good about your past week. Even though you no doubt may have had a few struggles during the week, with a little effort you may be able to see the blessings too. I hope so.

1. Celebrating my husband's birthday by eating at a local seafood restaurant. We both marvel that we are at the ages we are. How did that happen so quickly?

2. Getting a bid on having some yard work done. Yeah!

3. Learning how to make a pin wheel quilt block and committing to making ten of them for a special quilt to be giving to someone.

4. Teaching a lesson at church about forgiveness. This is a thankful, because the teacher often learns just as much as those being taught. I was able to teach without getting an annoying allergy related cough when I was speaking, and I'd been just a little concerned that I'd have some difficulty that way. Many class members participated by making comments and by reading scriptures and I think that is more enjoyable that having the teacher be the total center of attention.

5. Having a friend return safely after being gone for a few weeks of caregiving out of state.

6. Going on a trip to the coast to enjoy seeing nesting puffins on Haystack Rock, and also seeing many sea creatures in the tide pools around the rock. Many photographers were gathered there with their long lens cameras to take photos of the puffins. 

Haystack Rock where puffins were nesting
along with other birds high up on the rock. 

A sea anemone in a tide pool

7. Our children who are all adults and have been for many years.

8. Our grandchildren who are all adults except for three. Three of the young adults have just  completed high school and are in that stage where they want to be treated  as adults in many ways, but often still need some guidance from parents even if they are no longer living in the home of their parents.

9. Our great grandchildren and the one on the way.

10. He who makes my life complete, who does those little things that makes life easier for me, who surprises me with a little bowl of black berries he picked for me, or helps me rewrap my toe after a surgical procedure I had done yesterday. Whether it is the big things or the small things, he makes my life worthwhile and makes me feel special.

Finish the Sentence Friday - Stream of Consciousness - My Bed

Although it is now Saturday, the Finish the Sentence Friday blog hop is still open, so I am linking my thoughts (a five minute stream of consciousness post on the cue given by Kristi Campbell of Finding Ninee, our host, and Kenya J. Johnson of Sporadically Yours, our co-host). I appreciate their providing us with prompts each week. 

Click Finish the Sentence Friday - Stream of Consciousness - My Bed to read some of the other posts on the topic.


Not everyone in this world is blessed to even be able to sleep on a bed, so I feel very grateful to have a bed.

Our fairly new (less than five-years old) firm queen-sized bed takes up about half of the bedroom. It allows me just enough space to walk beside the length of it and the wall. One side of my body touches the bed as I walk forward by it and the other side of my body is only 1-1/2" from the wall. The top of the mattress is high enough that my hand, if in a fist, touches the mattress when I am standing. At this height I am able to sit and rise from the bed easily. That is especially important for me these days. The bed is elevated at the head which is better for both my husband and myself.

We find this bed to be just right for us. The head of the bed is centered under a window, which allows us to feel a cool breeze if we open it on hot summer nights. We both enjoy the light weight of a down-filled duvet that covers the bed. In the summers we just fold it down by our feet, but it is still there to pull up for those cooler mornings.

It has been a place for us to be close to one another, to relax, to heal, to read, to sleep, to dream, to listen, to talk, to remember, and sometimes to plan. Mostly it has been a place rest and sleep.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Six Sentence Stories - Habit

Habits can require a lot of effort to establish, or can begin fairly innocently without realization of what kind of impact certain actions may have in the future. 

I've written a story which I am linking to a blog hop at Denise's Girlie on the Edge's Blog. The cue is a different word each week. This week we were given Six Sentence Stories - Habit. Click the link so you can read the other stories written in just six sentences.

Hoping to fit in with some of the girls at her new school, Marylou again joined a small cluster of girls sitting on the grass during their lunch break.

They all seemed to have something to say to one another, but not to her and neither did she interject.

Finally, one of the older girls, gazing directly at Marylou's hands asked her why she always sat like that.

Shrugging, without making eye contact, Marylou's cheeks flushed in embarrassment as she glanced down at her hands while slowly opening them until her fingers were fully extended between the blades of grass.

Another girl held up her own fingers admiring her pink polished nails, and told her about how her mom used to put hot pepper sauce on her fingernails to make her stop chewing them.

The thought of that playground encounter was all it took for Marylou to begin breaking her recently acquired habit.

Monday, July 16, 2018

Ronovan Writes #Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt #Challenge #210 Woke&Up

It has been a long time since I have participated in the haiku prompt challenge that Ronovan Hester at Ronovan Writes gives bloggers who enjoy writing haiku. The prompt words woke and up reminded me of an experience I had last night. Click the link to read the guidelines if you wish to participate.


restful sleep escaped

when horned owl's hoots woke her up

thoughts raced through her mind

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.