Monday, February 19, 2018

Rain Changing Over to Ice

It is a dreary, rainy, foggy day. We are on the line for the rain to change over to freezing rain later. I'm hoping we stay on the rain side of the line. It is a good day for hot tea and reading.

But we did have a brilliant sunset last evening. Here are some of the photos I took.

That bright dot in the middle, lower third is the ball of red barely still showing.



The moon several nights ago when it was New.

This was the sunset Friday night. I was reading a dystopian novel where everyone had to ditch their smart phones, computers, etc., in order to remain undetected, and had to go back to rudimentary forms of communication. I thought this looked like smoke signals. I wondered what they were saying and who was trying to communicate with me. 🙂

 Another picture from last week. That snow is all gone, now. The Robins and Cardinals have been singing. One month to 'official' Spring.

Happy Presidents' Day!

Saturday, February 17, 2018

A Poem For My Brother On His Birthday

Brother and Sister
  By Lewis Carroll

"SISTER, sister, go to bed!
Go and rest your weary head."
Thus the prudent brother said.

"Do you want a battered hide,
Or scratches to your face applied?"
Thus his sister calm replied.

"Sister, do not raise my wrath.
I'd make you into mutton broth
As easily as kill a moth."

The sister raised her beaming eye
And looked on him indignantly
And sternly answered, "Only try!"

Off to the cook he quickly ran.
"Dear Cook, please lend a frying pan
To me as quickly as you can."

"And wherefore should I lend it you?"
"The reason, Cook, is plain to view.
I wish to make an Irish stew."

"What meat is in that stew to go?"
"My sister'll be the contents!" 
"You'll lend the pan to me, Cook?"

Moral: Never stew your sister.

The poem might have applied more to my older brother's plans for me, but it is my baby brother's birthday. He has quite the sense of humor, so I think he'll appreciate these sentiments on his 64th birthday. Perhaps, like me, he has never read this Lewis Carroll poem before. Happy Birthday, Les!

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Purging For Lent

I read this online yesterday and thought what a good idea! I've been wanting to, needing to, clean out my closets. (Yes, I have two, but that's because Bud got the big master closet.)

"Forty Days - Forty Items"
"Wednesday is the first day of Lent. I have a challenge for you! Each day of Lent remove one item from your closet that you no longer wear or need and put it in this trash bag. At the end of the forty days donate these items to a place that can share them with someone who can really use them!"

The first two items are in the bag. The bag is hanging on the closet door so I can't *forget* to put something in it each day. I don't think it will be too hard to do this the first twenty days; I'm not so sure about the last twenty. I have things I haven't worn in like, forever, but I saved them from the big purge (nine large garbage bags!) when we moved here (for sentimental reasons).

Don't you agree this is a good idea?

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Celebrating Valentine's Day

There wasn't supposed to be any gifting around here, but Hubby Dearest almost always disregards the rule.

Thankfully it is a little box of three of my favorite chocolates. I've already eaten the dark chocolate butter cream. The other two are a coconut cluster and a caramel.

Monday my daughter-in-law, Shalea, and granddaughter, Deise, came to visit and brought me a Valentine wreath. I love the soft pink and the sparkly white ribbons. And, of course, the R.

Valentine pictures of some of the great-grands were shared with us on Facebook.

First this one of Ayden and Greyson. Mom, April, had it captioned, "How I feel about Valentine's Day VS How other people feel about Valentine's Day. It is easy to tell which was which.

Then granddaughter, Katrina, shared this Happy Valentine's Day photo of great-granddaughter Brynley's first Valentine's Day.

Not a Valentine photo of little Maverick, but the most recent I have of him from last week.

What did HD get for Valentine's Day, you ask? For lunch I made him ribeye steak, baked potato, salad and butterscotch pudding.

And Mother Nature has given us a warm, snow melting day - it almost feels like spring.

"All you need is love, but a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt." (Charles M. Shultz)

Happy St. Valentine's Day!

Saturday, February 10, 2018

L'Heure Bleue

I tend to think of the blue hour as that time of evening twilight, most likely because that is the time of day Guerlain was referring to when he named his famous fragrance - "The sun has set, but night has not yet fallen. It's the suspended hour. The night has not yet found its star."

But the blue hour can also refer to the dawn twilight which is when I took these pictures this morning. I was taking them because of the snow, but the quality of the light made me think, l'heure bleue.

It fell softly, without wind, to pile up as it did.

When the Amtrak train went through, this blue haze was the result.

I will still think of l'heure bleue as that time of evening, "The hour when one finally finds oneself in renewed harmony with the world and the light", because that is the time of day to which I learned the term applied. The magic hour.

(Quotes attributed to Jacques Edouard Guerlain)

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Working on St. John

Internet service on St. John is very spotty according to my daughter-in-law, so today is the first I've heard from them.  I thought I'd share their photos and captions for today's blog post.

"Still very much the same, yet so very different. So hard not to be sad."

"Our view every morning."

"Damage in Coral Bay. This used to be full of trees. Never knew all the dwellings there were on the mountain hidden by trees and vegetation."

"Driveway we helped clear from mudslide at the bottom."

"First house we helped at. Picture taken after the debris was cleared." (This is my son, Douglas, posing for picture.)

And this is the one picture he posted. It says: "Umbrella concrete piers."

Shelly wrote: "So far we've helped clean up debris. Doug built some handrails, recovered personal belongings from a cottage that fell down the mountain; disassembled the walls and part of the roof from the same cottage. Today we are helping install restaurant umbrellas."

Her comment on that first photo of the beach: "This pic was after a hard day's work." Doug's comment: "Tough week; good weather."

Thank you both for writing my blog post for me today. I know how much it means to you to be there doing what you can to help the island rebuild.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

What's Wrong With This Picture?

There's really nothing wrong with this picture. The sun is shining. I like the shadows on the snow and ice. If there is anything wrong with a picture it is in these:

Posted by my brother, Les. He and Susan are at the Iberostar Paraiso Maya near Cancun, Mexico.

While son Douglas and wife Shelly are on St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands. Sun, sand, beaches. FEBRUARY! Nope. Nothing wrong.

I could be here. In Arizona visiting my niece in Flagstaff, my brother-in-law in Benson and our friend Kristina in Tucson. I could be walking with her in this arroyo behind her house, picking up rocks.
We talked about it again this week while the snow was flying and the temps remained COLD.
But honestly, I just don't get excited about traveling anymore. It used to be if I even heard a whisper of the words, let's go, I was packing my suitcase.

I told Bud if we only have one or two more long trips in our future, I'd rather go here....
....back to Portland to spend time with Kari and Ken; to take the 'Northern' route again and see more of North Dakota, Montana, Washington. To do it when the weather is nice and when we're not in a hurry going or coming.
Kari took this photo this morning of Mt. Hood silhouetted in the sunrise. When we were talking Sunday morning and I told her how I felt about a trip, she got all excited thinking about us visiting them again. I told her it wasn't anything definite, yet. But after seeing her photo.....?

....or back to here. I know Bud wouldn't mind visiting his son again. As much as I love my extended family and friends, shouldn't we be spending our time with our children as much as possible?

I may not get as enthused about traveling as I used to, but once I'm on the road again I can succumb to its temptations.