Friday, December 31, 2010

hello new year

It's time to say goodbye to christmas and hello to 2011
time for a few words
just read a post by
The magpie's fancy blog
she has chosen a word - grace - to mark the new year
i thought about that and decided to do the same
after talking about my very much loved
brother-in-law who died 3 years ago right before christmas
i choose optimism
Bill was forever the optimist
he always looked for the good in every situation
for the love of Bill - for the love of my family
i choose optimist to guide my year
may your 2011 be full of much good
fall leaves caught in a stream of ice

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

sunrise - sunset - obsession

this is what greeted me christmas morning
i am obsessed by beauty
nature's beauty
it stops me
it helps me to be calm
it makes me think fulfillment of dreams is possible
christmas was wonderful
my sister was able to visit after a few year's absence
my children were all here
a beautiful granddaughter and enormously huggable grandson
i am blessed
wish everyone has blessings
feel them
know them
take comfort in them

sunrise christmas day

loving nature

the birds are my helpers
so I try to help them out in the winter
i've never used pesticides out here
in town, i didn't know any better. but i made the decision
to go natural - it seemed that pesticides just 
made problems worse
i made the right decision
i clean up most of the garden
that is part of natural pest control
but i leave a stand of flowers that have seed
heads, a feast for the birds
and it's fun to see the tiny finch
atop a black eye susan
eating and swaying in the breeze
here's to nature
and then there are the feeders…
winter bird feed

Monday, December 20, 2010

what should I have done this year…

rodney, our goat, always smiling
mrs mediocrity, a wonderful blog, asks,
what should you
have done this year but didn't
because you were too scared, etc
and I thought
i should have trusted my dream
i should have written
i should have trusted hope
i should not judge
i should believe in angels again- i have proof
i should forgive - myself
i should have had faith in my dream
what should you have done

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

christmas & childhood memories…

The tree went up late
the pleasure of unwrapping
the ornaments of my childhood
and hanging the apron my sister made
for my mother many years ago
still bring the same sadness and pleasure
a pure mix that comes with each
christmas season
it hurts that they are gone
but these little things 
bring nothing but happy memories
Santa and his sleigh ornament and the bell below graced my childhood trees.
Apron my sister made for my mother many years ago.

Friday, December 10, 2010


These two Bradford pear trees in my front yard have left me thinking - what tenacity. 
No matter they should have lost their leaves at least a month ago, 
no matter that we've had below freezing temperatures 
and strong winds - and even some snow.
 Is there something I need to learn from this little bit of nature. 
Should I keep writing? 
Should I keep making stuff? Practice kindness. Practice tenacity. 
 It's an interesting word, one to keep.
 What does tenacious mean to you? 
December 7 & these two still have their leaves…

Friday, December 3, 2010


It's that time of year for memories, an old photo of my family plus an uncle, 
an aunt and a grandmother that I don't really remember - 
she lived in Nebraska and we lived in Nevada. 
On the far left is my sister with arm around my brother. 
Skip one person and you see my mom standing behind 
my other sister (in shorts). 
Then grandma (dad's side), uncle, and me and dad. 
Yes, this gives some perspective to how old I am.

Read a post this morning from Spirited Woman - 
started "she was told by many 
that she had to choose on thing - specialize. niche. choose. 
but…" It's the but part I like - with so many loves and interests, 
how do you choose? The post continues "i choose me. everything else will follow…."
not being selfish. i choose me.
That's me on the far right with my dad. It seems
I've had that worried look on my face all my life.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

it's thanks - giving time!

The power of gratitude - that is what we should take time for today…and everyday. I'm always worried when I make my daily gratitude list that I'm just going through the motions, and sometimes maybe I am, but I am truly thankful everyday that I have a wonderful, funny, inspiring, talented and clever family, a roof over my had, indoor plumbing, central heating, and food on the table and in the refrigerator. I'm often dumbstruck by sunrises and sunsets, I love spotting coyotes on my desert walks, I love that I have a place to garden and two horses and a goat, two sweet Corgis of my own and their brothers visiting often. I try to remember daily, in the midst of rushed work, crazy phones and problems to solve, that I really have all I'll ever need right now.
    I wish everyone a wonderful day today no matter how you spend it. Mike and I and our brother-in-law will have turkey, stuffing, potatoes and gravy (the kids are all going to in-laws, etc, for the day), and I'll watch Miracle on 34th Street, a tradition I keep to kick off the holiday season. And I'm going to be adventurous tomorrow and shop til I drop on Black Friday. I may even start with the crazy early sales. Never have done it. Just thought it might be fun, and can't deny the added bonus of getting most of my Christmas shopping done. And I'll share my last fall scene of the season. Happy Thanksgiving.  

Sunday, November 21, 2010

crafting & gardening

Patrick is now 18 months, and I finally got to making a little quilt for him. I had knit one before he was born, but it took me a while to find the right material for this little one-piece quilt. After I found it - well - let's just say it took me a while to get back to the sewing machine. He now carries this around when I babysit him, at least once a week. I took this photo in my far back garden. This is the one garden that is fenced off from the dogs. The birds, rabbits and chipmunks can run amok back here and even taunt the Corgis in safety. The tableau, old bathroom sink on a wood frame, is one of my pots. I've been able to find old things out in the desert - the wood frame - and was also lucky enough to get this old sink from the Capurro ranch at the front of the valley before it turned into a Home Depot, Costco and shops, shops, shops. So I saved a little history of what used to be when we could ride this wild desert before it became tame. Oh, yes, I'm a crafter. I think I've said that before. I try my hand at knitting, book making, sewing, embroidery, card making, writing - definitely a master of none - just do it to soothe my soul. 
love to use 'found' items in my garden…
finally finished Patrick's blanket…

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Corgis at Kiley Ranch

My daughter and I often walk at the Kiley Ranch, once a real working ranch and now left with some beautiful - and some just old - buildings but no more cattle. The land was being developed, quite nicely actually, but the slow down hit, and we are the winners in this one. We have all this beautiful open space to walk in, and the pups can run. These girls and boys love to run, and two of them, sister and brother Stella and Joe, do not mind very well. The youngest of the four, my Frieda, is very good, and Jack, the oldest, also minds well. But on this walk, there are no cars, and so far the coyotes we've run into have been far, far away and definitely not interested in getting any closer to us. So Brooke and I walk, the Corgis explore, and we all dream of owning such a wonderful, grand expanse of land. We would turn it into a working ranch/park/maybe destination spot. My son could get back to training horse - ahh, such dreams. In the meantime, the Corgis (all from the same mother), Brooke and I enjoy wonderful quiet, hawks flying overhead and occasional coyote gangs loping through the adjacent fields.
Stella, Frieda, Joe & Jack

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Another year passes

It's time again to mark the passing of another year.These last months have proved to be a considerable improvement over 2009 and the beginning of 2010. I've added some me time to the busy schedule, have projects in the works for Christmas projects, have most of the fall garden clean up completed and am drawing up a plan to renew a flower bed that had become - well - messy. And I've decided to return to hopefulness. Because there is really nothing I can do about anything but me, I'll take responsibility of filling myself with joy and letting that vibration be what I send into the world. I'll start creating again - with paper, material, pen and nature. I'll observe everything that I love and take joy in it daily. What I like best about my life right now is getting back to this person I was. She's back. I like her and want only to improve on that. Notice this sunset I've posted from last week. Rarely an evening goes by without a spectacular sky in the morning and evening. Right now the sun is glowing as it drops behind the Sierra Nevada range that runs along the Truckee Meadows - another breathtaking end to a day. Hard not to feel the beauty. May you all be blessed by wonderful nature and at least one joyous moment everyday. 

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Why I love it out here!

As I took the dogs walking last Sunday, I couldn't resist photographing these reeds in the "lake." It's actually one of the springs that brought a Spanish family here to settle a ranch, and our area became known as Spanish Springs. These springs actually bubbled out in these fields feeding all sorts of wildlife, farm land, cows and horses. When builders bought the property, they dug a big hole and let it fill up. Now all sorts of water fowl stop by and killdeer have their babies on the surrounding ledges. I can still find beauty out here, not to mention the thrill of running into an occasional hawk. I met a hawk in the same place the previous Sunday and was happy I'd brought my camera along to capture this one taking off.

Beautiful Fall

This fall has been particularly beautiful, and luckily, most of my trees turned. I took these photos  of the leaves on Tuesday morning before a very cold storm swept in and knocked most of the leaves off the trees. These are trees in my front and back yards that I planted for color, and this is one of the big reward years. (Sometimes the hard freezes hit before the trees have turned and just freeze them on the limbs, brown and crinkly.) The colors are part of the reason I love fall. And then there is the late blooming poppy. There were three buds and this one made it before the freeze.

Monday, November 8, 2010

And the Corgi Hot Dogs

And then there are the 4-legged variety of trick or treaters, my daughters Corgis Jack and Joe. Yes, they are hot dogs! Jack, the one on the left, manages to discard his costume but is patient when to get it back on so I can photograph him. These are the brothers to my two females. Happy fall!

Halloween has come and gone!

Did you know that Halloween is a holiday here - kind of. I spent my youth wondering why kids in other states didn't get this wonderful day off from school; how lucky was I to live in a state that celebrated Halloween by letting kids out of school! I really don't remember when I realized the day off was to celebrate the state of Nevada's birthday. Oh well, we still had a holiday. Of course, it was Sunday this year, and even though I decorate and welcome all trick or treaters, since we moved into the country where houses are far apart, we get few to none of those costumed children. However, we had one special trick or treater this year, my grandson, Patrick. Below are photos of him not being so sure about knocking on the door, and then being enticed by - drum roll here - candy!

Patrick not so sure about this…and then -

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Potato and the Egg

The potato and the egg. Last night I cooked up a bunch of red potatoes from my garden for Monday night dinner. I had a bag of them sitting on the floor and we all had a good laugh when looking at some of the monsters. Red (or new) potatoes are usually small, but these potatoes were my best growers out of everything I planted this year. Potatoes never let you down. Anyway, my daughter suggested I take a photo alongside an egg to get a comparison. Just thought I would share on this blustery but pretty warm for November fall day.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

I took this photo last Friday. Yes, the Virginia Creeper did finally turn it's beautiful red. This one rambles over a rustic gazebo that my husband built many years ago. The vine thrives and I make wreaths out of cuttings. As beautiful as this was, it only lasted a couple of days. Then the winds swooped in and yesterday, the leaves covered the ground. I still have hope for some of the trees to turn before more wind comes in and blows the tired leaves onto the ground.

Monday, October 25, 2010

I introduced you to my grandson, Patrick, last week, so I thought I would have you meet my granddaughter, Pheenix, this week. She's just out of high school and does some modeling - this was a shoot she did this summer - and she goes to Paul Mitchell school. I'm so happy to have someone in my family who can do my hair. I have a terrible time getting the cut I want, and she manages to do exactly what I want. Sometimes she turns me away from the mirror until she's done - yes,it is not easy to cut my hair. I've pretty much felt sorry for the hairdressers I go to. So - now it's up to Pheenix to keep me well-coiffed!

Friday, October 22, 2010

This is a view of the breakfast room buffet with one of my first roses last spring - a late rose at that. Because of our harsh 2010 winter, I thought I had lost all of my roses, but as the spring wore on, I saw life, and then roses! Couldn't resist cutting one of them and posing it by a dish I bought at an antique shop. I thought it made a nice arrangement with one of my collected pigs.
You are looking at my Corgis chasing the border collie that lives on the other side of the fence. They look forward to this particular walk, and I try to get them there at least once a week. Stella, the smaller, older one nearer the fence, and Frieda will lay in wait. If the fence dog doesn't arrive, they are disappointed but know they'll get another chance on our way back down the hill. We walk 6 days a week, and I'm lucky to get out of the neighborhood and into the desert where they get a chance to run off lead. Frieda really needs it as she's not yet two and has excess energy. She's the funny one, a clown, and Stella is very serious. She needs to occasionally run into Frieda to slow her down, show her who is boss.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

As I said before, I didn't get much of a garden, but the pumpkin patch was adequate for Patrick, my grandson, who got first pick from Grammie's garden. He didn't quite know what to do, and I think the pokie leaves were scratching his legs, but he did settle on one, and his mama cut it loose from the ground for him. With that accomplished, my daughter and Colleen picked some, too. I've now cleaned out the pumpkin patch and have decorated with them around the front of the house.
It's a summer photo, but now we're into fall, my favorite time of the year. I'm ready to pull out the flowers. They should have given up at least 3 weeks ago - after all, this is northern Nevada, and now it's time for pumpkins. My trees should be golden, the Virginia Creeper should be red, and the horses should have a good layer of winter hair, but our weather continues to be strange. I did clean out some of my perennial beds on Saturday, but I always leave the Black Eyed Susans and some other plants for the birds to eat off of and hide in. We have lots of quail that winter over in the perennial gardens. And I do appreciate the extended growing season - I did get a pretty good crop of tomatoes, beautiful red hot peppers and about 24 pumpkins. Not bad for a very small vegetable garden.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010