Saturday, June 20, 2009

Michigan Wildflowers - June Edition

We had heavy, heavy rains with thunderstorms all through the night last night. This morning the rain had stopped, though the skies were still threatening. But I went to the park for my morning walk anyway.

The stream that usually looks like this:
Looked like this:
The pond was overflowing and the workers were mucking out the spill-way. You could see that the pond had been at least 6 feet further up the bank through the night. (Those pictures didn't turn out.)

Fearing that the wildflowers I had wanted to photograph all week might be beaten down by the rain, I took the camera with me anyway. This was the worst of the flower damage:

Beardtongue, after a shower. If you click for big, you can see the "hairy tongue" along with the hairs along the petals.

More Beardtongue



Moth Mullein in yellow and white

My Peterson Guide says that Moth Mullien is alien to this area, but the Audubon Guide says it runs from Ontario to New Hampshire and south to Virginia.....so Michigan would be included in that geography (considering the size of Ontario!)

Evening Lychnis or White Campion

I wish there was a way to upload the fragrance of this meadow as I walk through it, especially on a breezy day like today.

I love wildflowers, which makes me wonder why I bother with cultivated flowers in beds around the house. At this point the deer have eaten all the buds off the Echinacea and Sweet William. And the ornamental lilies haven't bloomed yet, so I probably should check and see if they were also part of the deer's salad bar.

Still no fiber activity to report. However, I found myself wanting to chew my fingernails last night. I was a "congenital nail biter" from the time I can remember until I left for college at 18. I don't remember intentionally quitting, but I haven't bitten a fingernail in all these years. So I'm thinking that maybe my hands are trying to tell me something. Perhaps I'll set the wheel in front of my chair tonight when we pop a movie into the dvd player.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

32

This spring was cool and windy. In early April we started to keep our gloves and basic gardening tools on the table by the back door to help facilitate a bit of weeding and pruning here and there. One evening we made a quick run to the local home store for a few supplies, returning home just as it was dusk.

As we pulled up to the house I was busy gazing at the wind tossed, blossoming trees but dh had locked onto another bit of movement. He parked the car and headed toward the back door as I gathered the purchases. Before I had moved very far, he returned wearing just the right hand glove from the table and wordlessly proceeded to the rack storing the canoes that he and ds had built a number of years ago when ds was 13.

The spring winds had tossed and billowed the tarp on the canoes and the edge had shredded as only polypropylene can do. As he approached the canoes, he squatted down to grasp the small thrashing bird that had caught his attention. I walked over for a better look as he reached in his pocket for the ever present pocket knife.

In his gloved right hand he tenderly held a young robin who had gotten his leg tied in a perfect half hitch on a shred of the polypropylene. Dh handed me the pocket knife to open and held the bird, belly up toward me, so I could gingerly cut the robin free. He then gently cupped his hands to right the bird and, as he opened them, the bird flew off to the northeast. All of this without a word.

The next day, the tarp was removed and cut into small pieces to be taken out with the trash.

It occurs to me that the event of that evening was a perfect metaphor for our married life together. In the past 32 years dh has often been there beside me, noticing when I get tangled up in the worries and "what if's" of everyday life. He has held me and helped me untangle the cares and has encouraged me to soar and be the person I was meant to be.

Today is our 32nd anniversary and I am grateful for every blessed moment since that day.
Happy Anniversary, T. Love you!

Way back when......

Monday, June 08, 2009

Up North

We took a quick trip up north this weekend. I could show you pictures of The Bridge. Or the wonderful pasties that we ate. Or the fudge which we did not eat.

Instead I will show you this:


I love it! Doesn't it make you want to meet the person who thought this sign was a good idea?

BTW....if you're not from Michigan, pasties have nothing to do with exotic dancers. They are a Cornish meat pie, brought to Michigan's Upper Peninsula in the late 19th/early 20th century by immigrants who came to work the copper mines.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Quityti

That was the security word that came up when I posted a comment to Sharon's Blog earlier.

I do sometimes think their are quirky coincidences in those words. QUITYTI? It's been a long time...have I quit blogging? I don't know. I do know that there hasn't been much I've felt like blogging about. There has been even less that I've felt like knitting, spinning or weaving. Just not in the mood.

Is it me or is knitting on the wane as a fashionable activity? Not that I knit because it's fashionable. No one does something for almost 50 years because it's fashionable. (Has anything stayed fashionable that long!?) Maybe I just need a break.

So what have I been doing now that the flower beds are filled? Reading. There have been several great books cross my path in the past few weeks. Let me list them for you. If you want reviews, use my Librarything link to your upper right. If I haven't reviewed them, someone else has. The first two get top recommendations from me.
  • Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese.....a saga type book. If you liked Cider House Rules (John Irving) and Evidence of Things Unseen (Marianne Wiggins) you will like this book.
  • Vagrants by Yi Yun Lee.....Absolutely exquisite writing about post cultural revolution China.
  • The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society...dual authorship. Epistolary format...read this past Sunday afternoon (It's a quick read)
  • White Tiger by Aravind Adiga....winner of the Man-Booker. Disturbing and humorous.
  • Coming to Our Senses by Jon Kabat-Zin....regarding mindfulness meditation. Very long and dense, but helping with my monkey mind.
Currently reading The Selected Worsk of T.S. Spivet by Reif Larsen. It's different..with lots of notes and drawings in the margins. However, the story is currently dragging....I'm hoping it picks up in a few pages.

The other thing I've been doing is hanging out at SparkPeople. I haven't eaten any processed or refined food for over 5 weeks. Of course that's easy to do right now as all the fresh cool weather fruits and vegetables are in. According to my home cholesterol tester, my total cholesterol is down from 214 to 158. Personally....I think that's a pretty respectable drop. (Oh yeah....I've been increasing my exericise too....walking, yoga, pilates).

Can you tell I'm in a battle of wills with my prescription pad toting internist? We'll see which one of us is more stubborn. (However, it does take a tad more effort to log and calculate every morsel of food than it does to pull a prescription pad out of one's pocket.......just sayin')

Ciao for now.