Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Love Story

I've been looking through old pictures again, separating them into catagories and trying to identify people I don't recognize. I happened to notice these pictures of my maternal Grandparents, Roy and Blanche Tilden. I love the way they look at one another.......
My Grandfather's parents were farmers in Benedict, Nebraska. They had five sons and one daughter. It became a tradition for the young school teachers to board at the big old Tilden farm house, and it was only natural that several of the young men married school teachers. When my Grandmother came to teach in the one room school house at Benedict, she also stayed with the Tilden family in the roomy farmhouse. She and my Grandfather formed an attraction, but before there could be any talk of marriage, her family decided to emigrate to Wyoming. Blanche with reluctant loyalty, went with them, making the journey to Cody Wyoming in a covered wagon traveling through Yellowstone Park. After they got settled, she went to work teaching in another one room, country school house.

Grandma Blanche used to tell about the borrowed horse she rode to school and back. This horse knew how to "take the bit" and she found herself helpless when, as soon as she was in the saddle he would run full tilt until he came to a gate where he would slam on the brakes, wait for her to open and reclose the gate, then take off hell-bent-for-leather for the next gate. I don't know if she had to dismount at every gate or if she was able to open and close them while remaining mounted. I wish I had listened more carefully to my Grandmother's stories!
The romantic part is that my Grandfather after mooning about the farm for awhile, saddled a horse and followed his heart to Wyoming where he and my Grandmother were married.
They returned to Nebraska where my Grandfather took the job of Postmaster of Benedict (I believe it was Benedict.) In a few years they were the parents of four small children and barely scraping by. They decided that my Grandfather should go to college to become a Veterinarian. With help from his family who gave them a little house in back of the newer farmhouse and cared for the four little children while my Grandmother taught school and my Grandfather was away at school, they made it through the four years it took my Grandfather to get his degree.

Look at the way they look at one another, standing hands entwined while he proudly holds his bag of Veterinary medicines.

And here they are when they were in their late fifties or early sixties, still gazing into one another's eyes

They were the kindest, most hard working people I've ever known and I still miss them.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Clouds and Castles

All this snow is just what Arizona needs! The little creeks and rivers are burbling joyfully along, and we're looking forward to a spring vibrant with wildflowers! Eeyore says if Global Warming is accountable for all this precipitation, he's all for it. The view from my kitchen window a couple of days ago......life is beautiful.....and interesting...
Click to dive into the snowy detail.
Have you heard of the Sand Castle competition at Harrison Hot Springs, British Columbia? Here are pictures of some of the entries. You can click on these for detail as well.

Huh! I had one more sand sculpture and one more of my pictures. Picasa didn't send them. Or did I do something wrong? Stay tuned for the next episode of, "Can a bear of little brain ever become computer literate?"
If you'd like to see more of the sand sculpture, it's here at Splendid Pictures Around the Net.
There's also a video that makes me want to take a vacation there today!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Spring Fever

After a several months of staring longingly up into the big pines. Raja finally made it. This is where he sleeps and, as you can see, he's is not that early bird who will get the worm! The sun was well up when Eeyore took this picture, and he stayed in bed awhile longer. Meanwhile:

He's as restless as a willow in a windstorm,

He's as jumpy as puppet on a string,

I'll say that he has spring fever,

Since I know it's almost spring................

My sweet Grandchildren gave me a pretty pot of tulips for Valentine's Day. They were sitting by the window with the sun striking a wonderful red in the petals, so I decided to take a picture. I was amazed when the camera saw not red, but yellow in the sunlit petals.

Here they are as my eye sees them in regular light..

And here as the camera sees them with the sun glowing not red as my eye sees it, but yellow through the petals.

A peek into the perfect, symetrical depths of one scented blossom.

As for me:
I'm starry eyed, and vaguely discontented,
Like a nightengale without a song to sing,
I'm as busy as a spider spinning daydreams,
I'm as giddy as baby on a swing,
And I feel so gay, in a melancholy way,
that I know it's nearly spring....
With appologies to Rodgers and Hammerstein...

Monday, February 18, 2008

President.s Day

When I was a little girl, my Grandmother used to make a cherry pie to celebrate George Washington's birthday. I can't bake everybody a pie, so I'll treat you to this feel good video that made the rounds in email a couple of years ago.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

More Birds!

You should check out the wonderful post at Walking Prescott
This morning the sun is striking strong and golden through the tree tops. To me, this means a warmer day and I know the barn yard creatures will be soaking it up. They grill themselves on one side, and then flop over to give the other side a chance. All but the peacock. He perches up on whatever is handy and high enough to let his tail hang down. He spends a lot of time outside the back door, occasionally giving voice to his mewling cry. He's training me to pop out to toss him bread and carrot curls when he calls me. What can I say? I'm just a sucker for a gorgeous guy!
Here are some of the birds showing up at the feeder.
A white crowned sparrow and maybe his mate. I'm not sure about that.

Lots and lots of house finches. Here's some interesting behavior. Two grown females, one feeding the other who is fluttering her wings like a fledgling needing feeding. I'm guessing they are practicing for motherhood! I've been seeing a lot of this behavior from the House Finch females. The male seems to be watching, but I think he's just chowing down!

Just click for a better look.

This picture of a Rosy Breasted Nuthatch is a bit blurry, but the best I've been able to catch all year! They're very quick moving and wary little guys.

The little Dark Eyed Juncos (we used to call them Hooded Juncos) come in large flocks and they seem as happy under the feeder picking up spilled seed as eating from the feeder.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

To My Valentines

Hope You All Have A Very Sweet Day!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

It's A Pig's Life!

I've been meaning to blog about the pot bellied pigs for a long time, but just hadn't gotten around to it. Here is my old fellow, T.S. Beliot sunning himself in a grassy spot with a little Mille Fleur hen busy scratching and picking at his back. As you see, he has little hair to support a flock of fleas, but the chickens seem to enjoy scratching about on his back and do seem to be finding something... hopefully weed seeds.... edible to them there.

It isn't unusual to see T. wandering across the back with a chicken or two riding along on his back, scratching away. But I can't seem to get a picture! These will have to do.

As you see, T. loves to zone out in the sunshine. He's chosen this grassy spot because his usual sunny spot in the soft earth of the old garden is still wet and not as warm. He has a hollow in the soft spot that he returns to most days for his midday nap. It is HIS spot and all the barnyard knows it.
Last fall, I happened to look out of the window to see T. standing in his hollow digging away, berming up the dirt around the edges. He was making his hollow deeper to protect himself from a chilly little wind that spoke of winter to come. Finally, he was satisfied enough to lie down in this nice nest and rest from his labors. That was when his companion pig, Suki approached his nest.
Suki is the epitome of a bossy female. She approached T. , and standing about a foot from his ear spoke to him in a loud, high pitched, and demanding squeal.
"Ooooooiiiieeee, " she complained, "Iiiiiiooooooeeeeee!"
T., obviously enraged by what she'd said, shouted back, "Arrrrggghhhh!"
It was a frightening, low pitched growl.
Again, Sukie's voice shrilled her whiny, high pitched demand. This time, T. lurched into a sitting position, roaring, gnashing his teeth and lunging toward her. She retreated a couple of steps, but here it came again, shrill and demanding, "Eeeeeeeeeeeiiiiiiiiiiiiiiooooooooooo!"
This time, T. abruptly stood up, moved about six feet away, and lay back down, turning his back to her.With an air of satisfaction, Sukie stepped daintily into the nice warm nest
where she settled in for a nap.
All I could think of was some of the exchanges between human couples that I've witnessed, and lets face it, participated in. It gave me something to think about...

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Sepia Sunday

When my oldest son got married, he and his bride had an old west style, sepia toned photo done at Virginia City, Nevada. I was so taken by the idea that I urged family members to have similar pictures taken.
This picture of my parents was taken in Jerome, Arizona when they were in their seventies. I have others of my family members to post from time to time. I love having these "old" photos and have been framing copies for my children and grandchildren.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Amazing Grace

My Friend's Mom died yesterday.
Actually, she died in her sleep, at the age of 104, the night before last.
I knew about it because I read her daugher's blog yesterday morning, but I faced a day filled with Dr.s appointments for my own Mom who will soon be 95, my DH, and myself.
I didn't call my friend because I knew she must have been up all night and even in the best of times, she's a night owl who stays up much later and sleeps later than I do.

I had to get started early with the round of appointments, so as is my wont, I compartmentalized the sad news. Between the time I arrived home from my last appointment and the time I had to take my Mom to an evening class, my friend called me. "I'm touching base," she said in a grief stricken voice.
I expressed my concdolences, and we chatted a moment.

This morning I woke overome by sadness for my friends loss.

I was priviliged to meet my friend's Mom several times, but the time I remember best was in the emergency room of the local hospital.

Another friend had called me. She'd been recently diagnosed as diabetic and was trying to regulate her insulin dosage.
"My sugar's at 60," she said, "I think that's pretty low."
"Eat, eat, eat, we're on our way!" I instructed.

At the ER, we found my friend and her Mom. Her Mom was 101 then, still beautiful, and trying er best to understand why other patiernts were being taken before her.
As it turned out, she was already designated to be kept over night, but there was no bed

available for her. There she was, one hundred and one years old, sitting in a wheel chair at 11:00 at night with a leg that pained her, and yet others, come lately others like my diabetic friend, were being taken back to the beds in the ER.

Now this is the important part, I heard her explaining to herself why others took presidence over herself. As they whisked someone away to obviously more comfortable and peaceful environs, she would say,quietly to herself, something about that person needing immediate attention and care more than she did. She said those things, not sarcastically, resentfully,or self-servingly, but as though telling herself that it was right and just and that she just needed patience. She didn't complain, howl or demand. She endured....with the most Amazing Grace, and that is what I will never forget.

When they finally found a bed for her, I was able to chat with her for a minute and I'll always consider it an honor that she remembered me at her next birthday party, her one hundred and second.

She was a great and gracious lady who epitimized the Greatest Generation. With her passing we are all bereft, but none so much as my dear frined, her Daughter and her family.
I am so sorry and so saddened for them.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Viewed From the Window

From the high window in our little office, I see blue sky. Hopefully, there will be sun to warm the creatures today.
I'm glad to be able to post photos again, and my spirits refuse to be dampened by the fact that my prose is still centered. This, despite the fact that the left justification margin box is lit, clicked, and double clicked.
The Good News Gentle Reader:, Is:
Despite the format, there will be no more bad poetry, so you can proceed in safety.

This is the way it looked from the kitchen windows yesterday with snow obliterating the bouldered hill usually seen in the near distance.

Outside the livingroom window, the feeder was crowded all day.

Monday, February 4, 2008

More Ado About Scrabble

Finally! A picture of the Scrabble Maven and her beautiful daughter, my renter and surrogate child, Tigger! This photo is up because I finally took Granny J.'s advice and downloaded picasa.
I'm so happy about that, I'm not going to complain because I can't get Blogger to go to left margin, and can only center my prose as I've centered my picture. I suppose I should write a little poem here so it would appear more compatable with the format!
The Scrabble Games
These ladies look mighty happy,
While E. and I feel equally sappy.

We started the game, our minds in a whirl,
With seven letter words we’d magically unfurl.

Well, we fought the attack, but were soon driven back,
By jezail phpht, halutz, cwm and scurril....
That's the best I can do for a spur of the moment poem! I'll be back as soon as I figure out why my newest batch of bird pictures, the ones I tried to save in picasa, have little red do not enter signs on them. I'm intuiting that as a bad sign.

Friday, February 1, 2008

A Little Harmonica Goes A Long Way

Buddy Greene at Carnegie Hall!