Thursday, December 12, 2019

Deer Watching

I love being close to nature and observing wildlife. I have lived in several rural settings during my lifetime and I have enjoyed the peace that a country setting provides. When I was a child, our family spent many summers camping. One year we went up into Canada and the beauty of the Canadian Rockies touched me in a way I have never forgotten.

 Nature walks with my grandchildren are a joy.  Children are very observant and have so many questions about the different foliage, the creepy crawlers, the elusive butterflies, or the wild turkeys that were so abundant up here this year. I think the kids learn to pay attention to their surroundings on these walks and to respect this wonderful Mother Earth that we walk upon.

Once upon I time I lived up in Bellingham, WA which wasn't rural but our backyard was a wildlife preserve. It was fun to watch the different creatures; the birds, the chipmunks, the raccoons, and the most friendly, the deer. They wandered through the yard and the neighborhood, quite at home. 


Momma and her baby


This guy showed up on the day we got the keys to the house.

Pretty as a picture

Close up of the stag. It was hard to snap the picture quickly and do it well.

Just another day

Look who's eating the bird food!



I've done some research on the spiritual aspects of these gentle creatures. There is a lot of information to glean. Below is only one source.


Friday, December 6, 2019

The Benefits of Growing Older


The practical days have departed
with their structure, their plans, 
the how to and supposed to be;
Such ideas are no longer a part of my reality;
Having learned that these are pure vanity
and egocentric wanderings
of eager, misguided egocentricity.
I choose instead to embrace spontaneity,
say what I think honestly
but if the hooey hits the fan,
well that’s just part of the fun.

Do you mind?

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Musing on an Autumn Day

The transition from fall into winter has always been a reflective and somewhat bittersweet time for me. The weather gets colder, the days shorter, and the nights longer, and I want to hibernate but I'd miss the fall foliage which is quietly breathtaking.  I feel blessed that I live so close to nature. I can look out a window at any given moment and see glimpses of the river silently flowing, constant in all seasons, just beyond the pine trees in our valley. 

My thoughts turn to my family, my children and grandchildren especially. What a year it has been.  I turned 70, my firstborn son turned 50, and my firstborn grandson turned 20. Each of us is beginning a new decade. It doesn't seem that long ago I was a young mother embarking on a new and so very fulfilling and challenging life. Hindsight is now clear and I made some unwise choices but the love I have had for my children was and still is, unwavering.  My heart is full.

To all of my children, I pray for your strength and wisdom as you navigate this crazy world; be kind, be forgiving, be true to yourselves, and never give up hope.


Monday, September 16, 2019

Miracle of Grace, a short prose poem

“A miracle is simply a shift in perception.”
Marianne Williamson
Everyday Grace

I have landed in the center of myself. My soul is like a precious stone cast into a deep pond causing ever-widening ripples of understanding. Does what I perceive mean anything at all? To still the mind, do I wrestle it into submission or gently entreat? Suddenly in a moment my perception shifts and a pearl of peace is felt. It must be treated gently, not clutched it tightly, but held lightly, for it is the miracle of grace.
The pond freezes in winter. Then what? There is no motion in the water. It is white, still, suspended, timeless. No reflection, just acceptance for what is as Mother Nature wields the silent power of snow, ice, and utmost stillness. This, too, is grace.

Thursday, May 2, 2019

From the Corner of Alder and Bridge Streets

It stands on the corner where Alder and Bridge Streets intersect;  the house where I spent my teenage years and from which I left when I became of age. A solid structure, it is an old building rich with history. Two generations of our family have lived there.


It was our beloved home, not only where our parents raised us but also where grandchildren and great-grandchildren laughed and played within its walls.  It was here that Mom took care of Dad when he began to fail during the last few years of his life. This is the house that my siblings and I packed up when our mother moved because she couldn’t live alone anymore.  It is this house, and the life it represented that my mother longs for.


It is more than the house, or the town that she desires, It is the presence of Dad, who passed in 2011 and the wholeness of her mind and heart that dementia is stealing from her. Dementia is stealing our mother, slowly and surely.


We take comfort that Mom is now in a safe, clean place and being cared for. It hasn’t been perfect, but it’s what we’ve got to work with.  There are some things in life that cannot be controlled, things that are hard to accept but accept we must and do the best we can each day. My siblings have done an amazing job handling the many details of Mom’s medical and financial situation. Mom has a network of good friends that have been closely supportive for many years. This it the nature of a small town. People care for one another.


The sad part is that Mom does not realize how much she is loved. I know she appreciates and loves her family and friends but she has been so sad since Dad died and hasn’t really been able to move on. She still has her sense of humor at times, and her easy-going personality is what I love the most.  She has always had a hard time asking for help and I know she feels helpless right now. She is in a place that is not “home” and has lost control over aspects of her life. She has lashed out in anger and frustration, unable to escape the prison of thoughts in her mind; the forgetfulness, the anxiety and confusion.


I miss the house at the corner of Alder and Bridge. I miss the peaceful afternoons there with Mom when I would visit her. I miss our walks around the neighborhood on those beautiful summer evenings and sitting out on the front porch playing a game of Scrabble and sharing a cold beer. I suppose in a way I am grieving.


The house at the corner of Alder and Bridge has new life in it now; extended family (children of a cousin and their little boy). I am happy for that. I believe they are continuing the tradition of care and love of our family.  There is much to be thankful for on this part of life’s journey.










Thursday, April 11, 2019

Meeting on Holy Ground


“The place where people meet to seek the highest is holy ground.” 


This morning as I was sorting through some papers   I found this line from the movie The Scent of a Woman. Curious, I did some research to find the origin:

I found this quite inspiring. From my perspective, anything we can do as human beings to further harmony, unification, and kindness is vital to our existence.  So often we focus on the differences and the things that divide us rather than the attributes we have in common no matter where we live on this planet or what culture and ethnicity we are.

These ideas of peace and harmony are nothing new but I like to be reminded and these days I don’t mind being reminded often,  and in fact, I seek positivity (not always successfully) each morning when I start the day.
As I write this the song of John Lennon comes to mind:


Monday, April 1, 2019

Women Enduring our World

There is power in the collective we. My individual experience is only one of the thousands of experiences with similar themes; stories of trauma and abuse and manipulation, often by those we trusted and believed, both individually and collectively. When I reached the point of “enough is enough”, I stood up for myself. We as a group can stand up for ourselves as one because we are empowered women and we have come too far to go back now.

It is daunting, discouraging, and frightening to witness what has been unleashed in our world today since the last election especially. Human rights are being stripped away, greedy corporations fund war instead of decent health care and education, Mother Earth is suffering. History tells us how countries have been overtaken by tyrants and dictators. Is it happening here? I feel we are on the brink, but I also have hope.

We can’t give in to fear, and if we are angry, we should be but I'd like to channel that anger in constructive ways and be good examples of kind and courageous people.