Spring has returned. The Earth is like a child that knows poems. ~Rainer Maria Rilke

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Words for A Special Place

A Blessing for the Woods
by Michael S. Glase

Before I leave, almost without noticing,
before I cross the road and head toward
what I have intentionally postponed—

Let me stop to say a blessing for these woods:
for crows barking and squirrels scampering,
for trees and fungus and multi-colored leaves,

for the way sunlight laces with shadows
through each branch and leaf of tree,
for these paths that take me in,
for these paths that lead me out.

Michael Glaser recently received the Homer Dodge Endowed Award for Excellence in Teaching at St. Mary's College in Maryland. He has served as a Maryland Poet-in-the-Schools for 25 years, published over 300 poems in literary journals, newspapers and anthologies. His most recent collection of poems, Being A Father, was published in July 2004, when he was also appointed as the State of Maryland's Poet Laureate.

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Friday, January 22, 2010

Around the Rain Drenched Farm

The Ladies started laying again this week. They must have taken my threats seriously. I could have used the "magic monkey" curse, since it worked so well with Blogger, but I didn't have to. My chickens have "magic" of their own. Look at those blue eggs. The Araucana hens really know how to lay an egg don't they?
So, yesterday, with these fresh eggs, and taking the whole afternoon off from dealing with computers, I BAKED COOKIES.
We love Snickerdoodles around here. I put some orange zest into the batter in honor of my mother, I put orange zest in just about everything. So did she. It's one of those sweet aromas that remind me so much of her. The house was filled with this wonderful fragrance for the rest of the day.
This is the view of our front yard from the chicken house. It rained all day yesterday. Everything sparkled..., except the goats, of course. They were inside their house grumbling.
Brownie has had a frown on his face for days. I don't' even want to have a discussion about the weather with him. He's in a foul mood and it wouldn't be pretty. We need this rain so badly here. He just doesn't understand. GOATS!!

I want to wish my dear "childhood" friend, Dawn, a very happy Birthday. I will tell you the wonderful story of how she found me and where we came from, soon. It's a wonderful story of friendship; lost and regained. Stay tuned...
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Thursday, January 21, 2010

Magic Monkey Curse

If this works I will have to eat my words about MONKEYS. If using them as a threat to Blogger for yesterday's "error" fest works, I will then have to apologize to my friend Jan of Little Pink Houses for everything I ever said about Monkeys.
This is my last effort to post photos on my Blog. Then I'm not sure what I will do. AND YOU WON'T KNOW ANYWAY, BECAUSE YOU WON'T SEE THIS POST AT ALL. #*$&%

Thank you Blogger and the Magic Monkeys. I know that Jan will never let me live this down but it will be worth whatever she throws my way. I now have a "magic monkey" box for all those occasions when I need extra powers.
I just wish that when I asked Blogger for an answer, they would respond with SOMETHING, any kind of small response that might have said that It's OK. we are working on it: A bone for the dogs of blogs out here. Please....,
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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

So, What do you think?

The serving plate, above, is a beautiful china plate surrounded by a decorative chrome frame. The back says that it is called UMBERTONE made for Farberware by LEIGH potters, inc. U.S.A. It is a pretty pattern that was made in the 1930's and I found it online priced anywhere from $20. to $60.( some online antique stores are ripping folks off). I got it for $4.50. Good deal? Yep! It has a crack in the plate but the metal rim will always hold the plate together and the crack is only hairline so I don't think it will ever fall apart.
Interesting detail: The word Umbertone is spelled UN~bertone on the back of the plate. When I Googled the word I was directed to the right spelling. Could this be like a coin that has a flaw in it or a reversed letter/number. Could this make it more valuable? Does anyone know about these things?

The cookie jar without a lid is an example of finding things that have a memory attached to them. I remember my grandma having a jar like this. It's off-white background, the leaf handles and the little bugs all remind me of one, many years ago, on a shelf in the kitchen at my grandma's house. Wish there was a lid but, oh well, I bought it for $5.00 and will use it for a planter anyway. The mark on the bottom says TRANSOR WARE~Japan. I love the colors and the design. The small yellow Mums look lovely in it.
The cute little yellow hankie with turquoise and pink trim was $1.00 and it's just such a bright, sunny piece of happiness on a cold winter day. It just kind of went with the smile sign over my desk. The bear didn't mind holding it for the photo shoot at all.

This little piece of lace was actually two pieces. My sister and I split this sweet little "find". I'm not sure what I will do with it but it's so pretty and I'm sure I will figure out something. The two pieces were sold together for $4.00, so my half was a couple of bucks. That's a deal.
The little bear thinks that it's beautiful too. I draped it like a collar.., then kind of like a skirt. When I took the last shot( in the lower right corner) she had decided that she liked it best as a hat.
What fun this weekend was. What wonderful fun and time spent. I enjoyed my hunt for that "special" find. It's kind of like Geocaching, only the rainy day version and you get to bring it ALL home with you. Not a bad 3 days worth for $12.50..., plus lunch.


A big change of subject here...,
I saw rescue workers pull a small child out of the rubble in Haiti this morning on the news.
If someone asks you why we are making such a big effort to help these people down there.., please tell them it's because we need to.., because we can.., and because of that little girl.., and others who are still alive, underneath the rubble. It's all about being a part of HUMANITY. How could we not help?
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Monday, January 18, 2010

A Wonderful Sister Visit

Sis was here for a few days. She comes up to the farm for a short, rest-filled getaway. We love having her visit. Carl is always so excited to see her. Sis is his third favorite person in the whole world and that's OK with her. Wherever she goes he is right behind her. She loves dogs, having three of her own, and I think she would have more if her hubby would agree.
As if Carl didn't get enough attention around here..., he becomes "the little heartbeat at (her) feet" (that Edith Wharton writes about) when Sis is here. If she takes a nap, he's right there cuddled beside her. If she sit down on the sofa to read, watch TV or talk, he's in her lap. If she takes a walk with us, he's at the door waiting for HER to put his leash on and keeps looking at her as if to say.., " Come on now. Let's go. You're coming too aren't you?..., Please." It's mutual admiration with these two. He's such a ladies man.
I have no problem finding Carl when Sis is here. He's always with her. It's kind of a symbiotic relationship. Each one loves the other and they seem to speak the same language. Sometimes I think that she would like to take him home with her, but that's just not possible. Our lives would not be the same without the pupster. We just love him. He's a very special little being and he knows where the food is.

On Friday Sis and I went to Sutter Creek. Saturday we drove over to Amador City, my favorite foothill town, pictured above and on Sunday we went down into Jackson. Each day we would leave in the late morning, have lunch, spend a couple of hours shopping in our favorite stores and then come home in time to take a nap before dinner. You see...,when folks gets older they have to conserve energy and find that the "Shop till you drop" motto just doesn't cut it anymore. It's more like "Why the heck am I doing this to myself." and "My body is telling me it's time to go home." So..., because my sister and I are 58 and 65 years old now, we do things in moderation. It's called self preservation.
We love going to our favorite stores like Country Living in Amador City and Yesterday's Heirlooms in Sutter Creek and a few others. It's kind of a ritual now. On Sunday we drove into Jackson and, in spite of the weather which has turned to wind and rain, we spent a few hours looking through the Antique stores.
Now you would think that after last year, with all the sorting and clearing of Mom's things, that we wouldn't be shopping for ANTIQUES or anything else for that matter. I really can't explain this. It must be hereditary or a genetic thing. With no space left, ANYWHERE in my house, I will still find one more wonderful, can't live without it, "It's got my name on it" item that seems to appear on a shelf or in a corner somewhere in one of these shops. I can rationalize this in many ways but the bottom line is that I love to find something beautiful that can be used again, repurposed, refinished or just fixed. I will just have to take more OLD things to the Thrift shops so that I have room for the NEW things.
In my defense, I only bought lunch on Friday. Nothing else. So I CAN control these urges. On Saturday and Sunday I was very careful and tomorrow I will show you what I found. I will even tell you what I paid for my wonderful acquisitions. This is an obsession. I know this, but it's OK and I know that a lot of you out there understand. Don't you?..., or do you think I need a 12 step program?

Sis left this morning. She thought she was going to beat the worst part of the storm but I think she drove down into it. Just after she left the wind picked up and the rain started again. It has never stopped.
Carl is sad and must be a bit annoyed. He went into our bedroom after Sis left and chewed a hole in Maggie's bed, strewed pieces of foam rubber all over the place. Then he went into the living room and curled up in the blanket that he and Sis had cuddled in all weekend. It must still have her fragrance lingering in it. Now he's asleep.
Come back soon, Sis. Carl is making his feelings very clear. He misses you all ready. So do I.....
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