Unexpected Visitor

 

Yesterday was a bit different from other days since my recovery began. I had an unexpected visitor arrive. Despite plenty of books to read, knitting to knit, and writing to ponder, the days are often somewhat boring. And it doesn’t help that I’ve had a minor setback that limits my activity level. 
 
Back to my unexpected visitor. Looking out the large window into our backyard, I noticed the leaves on our vine maple fluttering. If there was a breeze blowing, none of the other trees were joining in. 
 
And then I spied him. A small squirrel bouncing from limb to limb. Stopping here and there to find a nibble of something. Then off he’d go either higher or lower on a branch, all the while bouncing as he went. I found myself giggling with joy. Laughter bubbling up inside me. This little fellow was so entertaining. At one point, he jumped from a branch and it came right back and hit him in the keister. Double laughter!
 
Tell me God doesn’t know when we need a boost, and I’ll tell you why I know otherwise. Here sat a woman wishing for a day brightener. And into her backyard came a squirrel with a routine at the ready. As he munched and danced his way through the tree, he also performed acrobatics. And all for this one woman-audience.
 
I felt lighter as he bounded on his way to his next assignment. His little impromptu performance filled me with gratitude.
 
nature, quote, time, trees, Katrina Mayer
Via Country Living Magazine

 

Featured Image Attribution: By Faith McDonald on Unsplash

Fading Colors

 

As I look out my windows, I see the fading colors in our garden spots.

I’m not ready. You read that right—I’m not ready. 

coneflowers, flowers, fading colors, fading
Image by Manfred Antranias Zimmer from Pixabay

The spring and summer blooms have kept my spirits high as I glanced from a window or stepped to our back deck. And on those days we’ve headed out in the car to whatever appointment I had, there was the front garden by our drive. Bright coneflowers, cosmos, and marigolds, and early on the blossoms of strawberries.

But it is only proper that with the season winding down and shadows growing longer, autumn is nearby. There are other colors waiting to take center stage. And with these changes come the fading of summer colors.

As Thoreau so wisely says, we must accept the changes and resign ourselves to what each change brings.

 

Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink,
taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.
— Henry David Thoreau

 

Featured Image by Peggy Choucair from Pixabay

Sunflowers

 

There is no friend like the old friend, who has shared our morning days,
No greeting like his welcome, no homage like his praise:
Fame is the scentless sunflower, with gaudy crown of gold;
But friendship is the breathing rose, with sweets in every fold.

 

~ Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Sunflowers draw their energy and warmth from the sun. That one fact prevents us from growing them on our property. Living in a shady, forested mini-wood has its drawbacks.

Yet, sunflowers bring cheer, energy, brightness, and good feelings whether growing in your yard or neighboring field, or in a vase on a table in your living room or on your deck.

Although they can’t speak aloud to us, their message is one of friendship and good feelings. Odd that man is incapable, even with his wide vocabulary, of extending kindness to those around him.

We could take a lesson from the sunflower as she exudes grace and acceptance of the world around her. She allows chipmunks, squirrels, bees, and others to feast at her center filled with seeds and pollen.

And where does she find what she needs for tomorrow and the next day? She spends her days tracking the sun to warm herself and attract pollinators. In the morning, she is positioned to face the sun as it rises to prepare herself for another day of work, or is it pleasure? I doubt we’ll ever know.

Thursday

Thursday took us back to summer temperatures with a high at 90. The beauty of the Pacific NW is at 8:10 pm the temperature has dropped to 82 and will continue to drop during the night. By 5:00 am, it will be 65.
It’s been a gorgeous day ending like all summer days. The light is beginning to change. Sunlight begins to fade bringing sunset to us.
 
We’ve come in from dinner out at a popular burger place. I mentioned a few days ago I was craving a good old-fashioned (i.e. not fast food) burger. Before heading out, I take my second get-into-the-Mustang-convertible-and-get-back-out without problems test. This time I passed!
 
After burgers and sharing fries and a huckleberry shake, we took a nice drive. I love the feel of the wind as we head down the road. I love even more the smell of the air as we get out into the country. This is my first trip this year in the convertible, and it was so refreshing and freeing.
 
Grateful am I for beautiful summer weather and the plenty of fresh fruits and veggies. And for an old-fashioned burger with my hubby in our Little Red ‘Stang.

Sounds of Summer

It’s Sunday and our family room slider is open. We’re just about into our favorite Sunday pastime–naps. But first, let me tell you about my favorite part of summer—the sounds.  Mornings with birdsong outside the window. The squeal of children playing outdoors. The beautiful flowers, the sunlight needed for them and me, and the opportunity to be outside.
 
Today we’ve been listening to the sounds of our neighbor’s grandchildren. When we moved here, this couple’s children were in preschool and grade school. We used to hear the happy sounds of that generation and now the next.
Weekends for our neighbors are busy. But the joy and laughter heard from that backyard is a pleasant thing. Laughing in the pool. Chasing each other around the yard. Swinging and climbing. And then the other sounds supplied by nature’s own. Dogs barking and squirrels scurrying up trees. And woodpeckers, crows, and Steller’s jays making raucous music. 
 
There’s also the sound of busy people caring for their lawns and gardens. Lawn mowers, leaf blowers, hedge trimmers melodiously humming a tune. For those into building, their nail guns, saws, and hammers provide percussion.
 
And the beautiful sound of families gathering around the table at the end of the day. 
 
Such a cacophony of sounds! And yet each one bears the gift of joy and happiness, thanks to the Creator’s magnificent hand.

Stormy Weather

Last evening the kitties and I enjoyed the thunderstorms in our area. The kitties probably didn’t enjoy the stormy weather as much as I did.
The image above, shared by our local TV station, KOIN, shows the storm system moving over the Portland area. 
storm-damaged tree
Attribution: KOIN

We were among the fortunate who escaped damage to property or grounds. Others weren’t so lucky.

 
As a youngster growing up in the south, my favorite summertime event was a thunderstorm. Trouble with my mother came my way because I dared to stand outside and wait for the storm to arrive. Then I refused to go inside.
 
I have since come to understand Mama’s fear of the dangers inherent in a storm. In my memories, those were some thrilling times.
 
Thunderstorms are not frequent visitors in Portland. But I’m keeping my fingers and toes crossed that more will come this summer!
Feature image attribution: Jose Julian Araya via KOIN