Saturday, September 30, 2023

"Faeries in the Garden"

"Faeries in the Garden"

Dorann Nelson

Clay, wire, fabric, twigs, bamboo, wood fence picket

(Nothin' against Picasso or DaVinci, but art by an artist you know is the best art of all. ❤️)

Thursday, August 24, 2023

Further Adventures in Vegetable Gardening

Further adventures in vegetable gardening ... eating!

Cucumber sprinkled with Feta and drizzled with Greek vinaigrette

Cherry tomato topped with sea salt and fresh basil, drizzled with balsamic vinaigrette

#growyourownfood #backyardgarden

Sunday, August 20, 2023

Remembering Hunter

Little wave of nostalgia:

An early morning scene from Hunter Mountain Resort in the Catskills. We were there for the International Celtic Festival.

Our 10+ years on the road took Greg and Maggie Muggins and me to so many places - places I'd probably never have seen, otherwise. A few of the places, I've since revisited. Some of the other places, like locales in the Catskills or the UP, I'm thinking I should see again. They were lovely places that spoke to the wanderer in me, more than any top vacation attraction could.

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

Just Being Honest

Sharing this, a screenshot from Twitter, because it's important.

And though they say never to read the comments on social medai, I did, and was (predictably) disappointed at some of the push-back.

So in the spirit of honesty and candor, let me offer my own take on this meme. It is possible to be plain-spoken (honest and candid) and not be thought rude:
  • Most people can perceive your intent, and if you seem to take delight in handing out (often, unsolicited) judgment, you'll be labeled as rude.
  • Your audience can tell if you're deliberately trying to embarrass/humiliate/hurt someone, and if you are, you deserve to be labeled as rude.
  • Make a joke or remark that reduces someone to a label (be it race, gender identity, hair/skin color, political affiliation, heritage, whatever) is rude. I said what I said.  
If you delight in being rude, have at it. But don't try to pretend you're "just being honest."

Sunday, May 14, 2023

On Henry's Gotcha Day, Which Happens to Coincide with Mother's Day, Which Happens ...


My heart is breaking into a million pieces tonight.

Unless some improbable miracle happens, I'll be saying goodbye to my beloved Henry-Dog tomorrow. I'm crying so much that I can hardly see to type, but I need to ask for prayers and well-wishes for the courage to let him go.

He's about 15 years old now -- pretty old for a Retriever -- and it's been just about 11 months since the discovery that Henry has multiple cancers. Honestly, that he's here at all right now seems pretty miraculous; I fully expected to lose him last June. He's stayed comfortable (as far as I can tell ... ) these many months, with medications and a change in diet and love, lots of love. But I can tell that he must really be struggling with a new physical issue, and I just can't let him struggle any more, not on my account. My brother thinks that Henry's been putting a brave face on things, for some time now, out of his devotion to me; I suspect that's close to the truth.

I've cried off and on pretty much all day, sometimes with guilt and regret for all the times that I might have done more for Henry. But then I look at all of the adventures we've shared -- traveling all over the US and parts of Canada, camping, hiking, trail-walking, sharing campfires and beach walks and lazy evenings doing absolutely nothing -- and I think he's had a pretty remarkable life, and I know that my life with him in it has been pretty remarkable.

He helped mend the hole in Greg's heart after Maggie Muggins's death, and he helped to mend the hole in mine after Greg's death. Had it not been for Henry, I wouldn't even have been able to get out of bed some days. The necessity of caring for his needs was a gentle reminder that Life goes on.

The picture is an old one, from about 8 years ago, but the expression is the one I'll remember best. This is the face of devotion, of loyalty, of caring, of earnest dedication to the task of being the best protector-dog and adventure-buddy I could've ever imagined. 

My Henry-Dog

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

New Lessons Learned from an Old Dog

Almost every day I learn something new from my old dog.

He shies away from my hand when I go to pet him. Sometimes he even opens his mouth, as if to bite. But I've realized that, as his sight dims, he sees only the shadow and it's scary to him. Once he catches the scent and realizes it's me, he leans into the petting with joyful abandon, as you see.

There's probably a lesson in there: maybe a lesson about fear and aggression and how they're not always what they appear to be on the surface.

Dogs are great teachers, and I'm here for it.