Recently had a haircut. A very short haircut. Now, my hair is traditionally longer. Mostly, because I’m lazy. Much prefer a braid or pulling it up into a clip. While up north, one of my friends would always remind me to ‘come in’ when my fingers got the yen to grab a scissors. But, a commute to AK isn’t feasible for a haircut. Especially at this time of year. Seems they have gotten a LOT of new snow these last few days. So, found a place nearby and had it done by a professional. It is too short, but while washing it today, remembered, at least I have hair!!! So many friends have lost theirs at different times due to chemo. Thus, there is no reason for me to whine about mine being too short! Besides, it will grow out and won’t need it cut again for months. It reminds me of a page boy cut, no photos, it isn’t necessary!! Just thankful for the chance to have it at all!
Last week I had a lab visit that coincided with a hot air balloon event just blocks away from where my appointment was. It was a kid day, so many of the balloons were tethered for short rides. When I arrived, there was only one balloon still in the air. It was almost sad to watch it collapse after landing. But, it was carefully packed away until it was needed for another air adventure. Being a person who is not entirely fond of high places, don’t think a balloon basket would be a place where I would want to be. However, I did get to touch one of the baskets and imagine the excitement it held. The first picture is crooked because I was so busy looking, forgot to actually pay attention to where the camera was pointing!!!
It made me think about how easy it is to fly when filled with the right stuff and how when that right stuff is stopped, how easy it is to fall to the ground and collapse.
Lance Mackey, well known Iditarod racer, died at the age of 52 on September 7, 2022. He was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2001, battled with other health issues, and was eventually taken from his fans and family by the cancer. From 2001-20012, Lance won 4 Iditarods in addition to Yukon Quest races and the Tustumena 200. He was a racing legend.
Queen Elizabeth II died on September 8, 2022. Queen Elizabeth was the longest reigning monarch in British history and the second longest reigning monarch of a sovereign country. “Queen Elizabeth II’s tenure as head of state spanned post-war austerity, the transition from empire to Commonwealth, the end of the Cold War and the UK’s entry into – and withdrawal from – the European Union.” (https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-61585886)
Someone took Toni’s awesome photo of Lance and photoshopped the Queen into it. She needed a ride home and Lance was there to take her. King Charles line from Hamlet fits them both. ‘May flights of angels sing thee to thy rest.” Although, for Lance, those angels may be ravens-which are clever pranksters of the air with a glorious chuckle. And those chuckles will say to them both, ‘you will be missed and guided on your way to your life beyond.’
One of the kid’s former teachers living in Tillamook snapped this the other day. Someone shared this information under the photo: “when the sun sets in the ocean there is a second (just before it disappears from sight) when the refraction of light through the water gives an instant green flash. It has to be clear ocean waters for quite a distance out to happen.” Now, it also happened in one of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, but that was Disney. This is real. What an amazing phenomenon to capture!!!
Change is one of those things that is a part of existence. A storm changes the course of a river, a river changes the course of a road, a road changes the terrain on the surface of the earth, and the surface of the earth changes with storms. The polyphemus moths I released a while ago were a part of a change that astounds me every time I think of it. Those moths live less than a week, usually 4 days. During that time, they don’t eat. The exist to mate and die. The eggs, if fertile, will hatch into voracious caterpillars and they eat and eat and eat and eat. Unfortunately, they only eat a few things (and once they start on a particular plant, that is all they will eat!), but their eating changes them several times and eventually they turn into a several inch long green caterpillar. Their last change prepares them for a hibernation of sorts. The caterpillars encase themselves in a cocoon of silk that becomes harder than plaster. Inside that they form a pupa, where they spend months in every element from pouring rain to freezing temps as goo or whatever. If they are lucky and have avoided becoming a meal for squirrels or woodpeckers, they become adult moths and enclose, or emerge, into the world to repeat the cycle all over again. This fascinates me because these particular moths are common all over North America and are rarely seen! In some southern states, these moths emerge twice in a summer season. If Jon hadn’t brought home a tattered dying female who was laying eggs last July, we may have never had the opportunity to be a part of this incredible journey of change.
My favorite caterpillar, Pee Wee, was always smaller than the others by a good bit. I was particularly worried he’d not emerge. When I was sitting at the table with the container holding Pee Wee’s cocoon, I was fortunate enough to watch his enclosure. It was incredibly fast. One moment there was a rustling in the wrapping of leaves and silk, suddenly a dark brown furry bit was visible, and in the next instant, Pee Wee’s head popped out with the beautiful feathers showing he was a male. He was absolutely perfect. It didn’t matter he was smaller to begin with, he became what he was supposed to. His promise was fulfilled. And he, and his siblings, blessed the three of us who nurtured and protected them for 12 months.
When I was a kid, I learned a jingle that has always stuck with me. Probably more of an earworm, but it fits Pee Wee. ‘I am a promise, I am a possibility, I am a promise, with a capital P, I am a great big bundle of potentiality...’ The rest of the jingle is more on humanity than life in general, but just wow! Way to grow Pee Wee!!!
The last week this area of Eastern Oregon had a series of storms with a duration of several hours. It was rather phenomenal to be a part of. Thankfully, this particular spot didn’t get the 70 mph winds or the large hail. It did leave behind stunning rainbows and flowers glowing under crystal drops.
The week before Easter, a weather change was approaching. So, I proceeded to pick as many blooms as possible. The rest were covered with tarps or containers to protect them. I was able to give away several dozen daffodils and tulips, but was still left with quite a few! I adore flowers and these beauties fed my soul until they faded away into memories of a stunning display.
“It is the sun shining on the rain and the rain falling on the sunshine, and things pushing up and working under the earth,” The Secret Garden
By the calendar, spring has arrived. By the weather, it is on the way. Much of the yard is rushing to put on new fashions, yet other spots in it are being a bit more cautious. Last weekend the plum tree was a stunning array of scent and color, all ready for a ball. Then, the wind arrived, and like Cinderella’s stepsisters, tore the raiment away and cast it upon the ground. Towers of scented bells toppled over and needed to be picked. Bright trumpets of gold on thin stems needed rescued. Others bent under a surprising frost and were brought inside on shorter stems.
Now, the house smells like spring with the vases of flowers in the window. The bright green grass was crowded with color from the plum blossoms, violets, and dandelions scattered and growing hither and yon. Early tulips are blooming and others are getting their cups ready to become fairy bowers. And in several places, plants and flowers I was certain were dead have pushed up from where they were ‘working under the earth.’
Spring is a miracle every year. One that is a joy to watch and wait for!
WordPress is an interesting program. or maybe its the new iPad. At any rate, I’m finally online with it and in spite of the bizarre boggles, it is a blessing. I suppose! Pretty sure I will go back to the desktop or irritating chromebook. Was hoping to use this, but will need to see. There is supposed to be an image of several birds near the feeder, but there have been issues with photos…and typing. No matter, there is snow!
The best part of this new week, is that winter has returned. The little birds are flying and twittering and scattering seed as they eat. I also noticed the squirrels were chasing each other, it is that time of year! My budding Lenten Rose was covered to protect it, but can’t do much more out there. Thankfully, the daffodils are still pretty small. Hoping the new snow and projected freezing doesn’t hurt them. So, its not just a blessing winter has returned, its a mixed one!
In this revolution around the ☀️ sun.
I would have used all of that as the title, but it was a bit long! But, I have learned. And that’s a grand thing. First, this silly iPad. I have wanted another one since my old hand me over bit the dust. When the one I’d ordered arrived, I was annoyed. I’d unintentionally ordered one the wrong size..and one with only 64 GB. Which, was chintzy because in 2021, the 64 GB iPhone ended. In this day and age, even basic components of new tech suck data. And if you play games or take photos and edit those, you just don’t have enough storage space. In fact, 64 is exactly what my new Samsung has. And also why I do so little from my phone. For example, Facebook. It’s reported to use 2 GB a month. If you only use 45 minutes a day. So, I do look up things online, but now this bigger GB iPad is up and running, will use that more. Took a bit to get it organized. My old iPad was dead and Apple is cautious about passwords. Mine hadn’t been used since December’18. When I called the middle of January, I was told it would be a month before I’d be able to create a new password!!! Which made this contraption a new thing for February. Gracious, there’s a lot to learn!
The most enjoyable part of new things has been cooking. For my birthday, on the first, I learned how to make cream puffs. Or the puff part. They worked exactly like they were supposed to! Filled those with pudding. Then, I dug out mums old Betty Crocker cookbook. Published in ‘67, I believe, and full of old fashioned images and language. Great reading! Ran across Baked Alaska, which took me down a bunny trail online with different versions of frozen sweets hidden in meringue. I decided to make mini ones and had to make meringue.
That is now my very favorite sweet treat. I made Italian meringue and wow! The frozen dessert was a bit compromised because it wasn’t frozen hard enough before coating with the topping, but still tasty even moderately melted. It fluffed up perfectly, baked perfectly, and tastes yummy on low sugar protein cookies. It also is good with just a spoon!!! It will be fun to try it again sometime.