Wednesday, December 22, 2010

whispers...and a bone doodle

People can't concentrate properly on blowing other people to pieces
if their minds are poisoned by thoughts suitable to the twenty-fifth of December.  
~Ogden Nash 
these should be part of our world all year...not just for christmas.

Christmas - that magic blanket that wraps itself about us, 
that something so intangible that it is like a fragrance.  
It may weave a spell of nostalgia.  
Christmas may be a day of feasting, or of prayer, 
but always it will be a day of remembrance - 
a day in which we think of everything we have ever loved.  
~Augusta E. Rundel

what i've loved and miss the most...
the hugs. the whispers. the secrets between my self and my brother & sister.
not being able to pick up the phone and call them.
not being able to hear their voices....their laughs!

but they're with me still. in my mind. in my heart.
if you look closely
you can see their reflection in my eyes...
in my tears...and in my smile.

i celebrate christmas in a non-religious kind of way.
not because i'm of another religion.
(i like the feeling of christmas. the lights. the decorations...)

as far as each his own.
so many different beliefs,
and  (for the most part)  the basis for 
so much prejudice. hatred. and closed minds.


from our home to yours...
have a merry...happy...joyous...memorable 'whatever you celebrate'...
and a healthy & prosperous new year!

 let's open our eyes and ears and mind...

let's listen closely to the whispers of the earth. of nature.
we are all one. we are all connected.

(bone doodle #6. made of armadillo & raccoon bones)
see 'bone doodle' tab above for page with MORE!

  stay cool...laura  :]

oh yeah...i almost forgot!
milo just reminded me...she's so excited!
 we're going camping between christmas and new years.
heading up to mistletoe state pk.
stopping along the way for one night at george L. smith state pk.

"Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat."

be safe. stay cool.  laura  :]

Sunday, December 19, 2010

this week's ramblings...

here i am. up before dawn.
actually i've been up since 4:45 (am)!
it's the weekend. i always wake up extra early on the weekend.
sleep in? what's that?!
it's not for me.
i like the darkness. the quiet.
no tv blaring in the background. no phones ringing.
just laptop...
and the occasional snore coming from the bedroom.  :))
 i'm still fighting this chest congestion.
and i think i know why i got sick last week. 
we were having a cold snap. one day was the coldest on record.
now, remember...i'm a massage therapist...i make in-home visits.
Winter is the season in which people try 
to keep the house as warm as it was in the summer, 
when they complained about the heat.  
~Author Unknown
and THAT'S the answer! i bundle up...layer up...go from the COLD...
into someone's house where they have the temp set to 80!!
do THAT...all day long...and you're bound to come down with something!
anyway...i feel fine. it's just this congestion...coughing...that's lingering.
last week...the morning of the coldest night yet...the water in the bird bath was frozen!
 yet...even though the plants and flowers have given in to the cold...
even though we're surrounded by shades of winter brown...
one of the bromeliads scattered throughout the yard...
brings COLOR and LIFE  to an otherwise dying  landscape!
 most of the little critters and creatures seem to be hibernating...
conserving their energy 
for those sunny days...when the temp rises a bit.

sam spotted this red-shouldered hawk in the backyard.
surprisingly, by the time sam ran to get me and the camera...
the hawk was still there...perched on a fence post.

the barred owl. its familiar hooting can be heard in late afternoon and evening. 
sometimes we can catch a fleeting glimpse of the wide wingspan...
as the owl flies between the tall pines.

"Use what talents you possess; 
the woods would be very silent 
if no birds sang except those that sang best."   
~Henry Van Dyke

more LIFE in the yard...
lichen and air fern on dead tree branch...reminds me of coral...
...more lichen...
"Shall I not have intelligence with the earth? 
Am I not partly leaves and vegetable mould myself."
~Henry David Thoreau
venturing outside our little part of the world...
we happened to drive past a farm with horses and miniature horses
the other morning. sam did a u-turn so i could get a few pictures.

  and...another day this past week...
on my way to a massage appointment...
i passed a couple of cow fields...
run by the agricultural dep't of the Univ of FL.
i pulled over...onto the shoulder.  it must have been near feeding time...
because as the cows spotted me...they came sauntering over to the fence!

 it's hard for me to believe it's sunday already!

"Weekends are a bit like rainbows; 
they look good from a distance but disappear when you get up close to them." 
~John Shirley
it's even harder to believe it's almost the end of another year! YIKES!!

~~today we plan to go exploring out back. the vines and underbrush are dried
and it'll be easier for us to forge our way...
follow one of the deer paths...or make our own path. 
all bundled up and with our knee high rubber boots on...
we'll make our way through the back woods. pictures to follow next time.~~

thanks for stopping by...and wandering around!

stay cool...
laura  :]


Saturday, December 11, 2010

nature's curls and other seasonal stuff...OH, and bones!

i haven't been doing much for the past couple of days
other than sleep,
steep and drink ginger tea,
cancel appointments,
take xtra vitamins and herbs,
sleep some more.

today...i feel better...and ventured outside!

the temp has gotten down into the low 30's, high 20's at night.
besides the hooting owls...and wandering foxes...
during the day you can see lizards
slowly peeking out from their hiding places
for some much needed warmth...sunshine...
and the squirrels, still frantically collecting, eating & burying acorns.

i've been noticing all the little things CURLING... in to the colder weather...
losing their color...and turning to a winter brown...

You can't stay in your corner of the forest, 
waiting for others to come to you; 
you have to go to them sometimes.
~ A. A. Milne  Piglet, Pooh's Little Instruction Book air fern hanging in there...
looking like a nest of spiders...
OH, and speaking of spiders...
a daddy long legs (on front porch) trying to figure out which way to stay warm...
hopefully OUTSIDE, and not in!


last weekend we pulled the christmas boxes out of the closet.
and instead of going to get a live tree...or a cut one...
like we do every year...
we finally did it...we gave in...folded...
we bought an artificial tree.
telling ourselves, in the long run,  it's better for the environment...
no senseless cutting of more contributing to christmas tree farm pesticides.
and we'll save the $$ we spend each year.
we down-sized. 
putting our new, compact, 4 1/2 footer 
on the table in the front window...
conserving what little floor space we have!
the LIVE trees we've had for past christmases...never seem to make it after we plant them.
the only one that ever did was a small 'charlie brown tree'
that the guy at the lot gave us one year as a freebie with the tree we bought!

so...with that spirit of the season in the air...
the shelves and mantle filled with little santa & snowman figurines...
scented candles...twinkling lights and garland...
i'm ready for it to be over!
well, kind of.
i'm not a scrooge. 
it's just that it's all gotten so commercial. so out of hand.
i don't DO christmas for religious reasons. 
i do it for the 'feeling'.
but nowadays the stores are jam packed with christmas trees and decorations 
before halloween is even here.
gifts for HER. gifts for HIM. everything packaged...oh so nicely...
in plastic wrap with big ribbons. (can you hear the sarcasm?)
the packages are yelling "ME! ME! BUY ME!"
but i block them out. all the ads. the commercials.
subliminal messages...they try to worm their way in...
all the people rushing around. pushing & shoving.
no thanks. i'll just relax by the fire...have some hot apple cider...
or how about a nice hot brandy toddy...
and wait for the holiday panic to end...

If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, 
it would be a merrier world.
~ J. R. R. Tolkien 


earlier today, sam surprised me 
with something he picked up along the side of the road...
on his way home.
NO, it wasn't a lost dog...a puppy...or a kitten...
or even a hurt turtle...or bird...
it was a deer skull!
i know what you're thinking...
that's pretty scary, eh?
scary, that sam knows me so well...
or scary that a dead animal would be an acceptable gift?
it's still a little 'furry'...BUT...
i can see another decorated skull in the near future!

and here are the cleaned bones from the last couple of owl pellets i've found:
they too, will be part of some future creation...

well, my congestion is subsiding...
achiness almost gone completely...
my ginger tea is well steeped.

i have much catching up to do...with all the terrific blogs i follow.
and i will...i promise. i'll wake up early sunday morn. before dawn.
and sit down with my coffee...and read away...and journey...all over the world...

'til next safe.
stay cool.
laura  :]

If the person you are talking to doesn't appear to be listening, be patient. 
It may simply be that he has a small piece of fluff in his ear.
~ A. A. Milne 

Sunday, December 5, 2010

suddenly sunday...

"There aren't enough days in the weekend."  
~Rod Schmidt

it's sunday.
4:30 AM.
this past week...crawling along...hectic...
i need a day like today.
a day with NO commitments. NO work. 
NO plans. 
(well, other than laundry, food shopping...and catching up on all the usual stuff 
there's no time to get to during the week! aaaaargh!!!)

and to make things even's raining!!  yay!
we really need that wet stuff!
over the past few weeks...we've had the coldest day ever...on record...
AND the hottest day ever!!'s cold again. 
as the week goes on it's supposed to get a little colder each day. 
50's during the day and mid 20's at night!
up the road from one of my appointments the other day...
i passed these horses. 
i think they're  'paint horses'...with the big splotches of brown or black.
horses sure are beautiful looking creatures!!
BUT they scare me.
i have ridden a horse before...oh, maybe once or twice in my life.
they have such BIG heads...BIG mouths!  BIG teeth!
i like to appreciate them at a distance...
can you make out the braids in this one's mane??
cool, eh?
yesterday i went to the yearly 'Cane Day' Festival with a friend of mine...
to set up a booth to sell our art. 
no, i couldn't bring any of my BoNE or BoTTLE had to just be
nature photographs...paintings...or pressed flowers from the park...Dudley Farm.
here's our set-up...
it was a gorgeous day! sunny! high 60's.
lots of people came to "Cane Day"...and we did so-so. 
BUT we got alot of compliments on our art...and that made me feel,
i'll probably try another local art fair some time in the future.
so, you're asking...what the heck is Cane Day anyway? 
well, Dudley Farm is a historic working farm...
with animals...fields...gardens...and a functional cane syrup complex.

a few times during the year they do sugar cane grinding...boiling...
and bottling the end result...sugar cane syrup.

of course they do the cane processing the old fashioned way...
a mule driven cane mill.
aaahhhhhhhhhh!! the smell of the cane juice boiling.
such a heavy...sweet...thick aroma.

at Cane Day, park staff & volunteers offer activities and demonstrations in
 blacksmithing...woodworking...cross-cut sawing. crafts.
quilting...doll making...weaving...corn

and of course making cane syrup the old fashioned way!
a FREE SAMPLING of the warm cane juice...tastes like woody flavored sugar water.

anyway, i've got to favorite thing in this park...
are the cracker cows!!
yeah...the park history is cool...the demonstrations are neat...
the cane grinding & cooking awesome...
BUT THE COWS!! OOoooooooh!!!!

so...all things considered...
we may not have done as well as we would've liked...with our art stuff.
it took alot of preparation...
building a 'mesh wall' to hang all the framed art (thanks sam!!)
and constructing the wood displays (thanks again sam!!)
BUT it was a great day anyway!

i got to see Dudley Farm for the first time!

one of my clients lives only a couple of miles from here...
so i'll definitely be back to check up on those cracker cows! yeah!!

happy autumn!

"Use what talents you possess; 
the woods would be very silent if no birds sang 
except those that sang best."   
~Henry Van Dyke 

'til next time. stay cool & be safe...
laura  :]

"Laws change; people die; the land remains." 
~Abraham Lincoln

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

fox 'n' feathers

we had been wondering where the foxes went!

we used to catch glimpses of them...two of them...
at the edge of the woods out back.
sometimes we'd spot one dashing down the driveway...
heading for the field across the street.
last year we even saw a little pup wander into the yard!

but, it had been a while. with all the neighborhood hawks and owls...
on the prowl...we were a little worried for them.

this past saturday, while we were sitting out back...
and sam was deep-frying our second turkey of the season...

there they were!! two grey foxes!!
of course i didn't have my camera.
but luckily by the time i ran inside...grabbed it...and ran back out...
one of the foxes was still wandering around!
“A fox is a wolf who sends flowers.”
~Ruth Weston

“When the fox cannot reach the grapes he says they are not ripe”
~Greek proverb

it must've been the scent of the turkey frying... was pretty cool...
and even cooler that i was able to get the camera before this one ran off.


on sunday morning while wandering...
we found two more owl pellets...(which i have soaking in water & bleach mixture)

and these bluejay feathers.
((of know me...seeing a few feathers on the ground...
a tussle?  something going after the blue-jay?
there might be a dead bird around...
dead bird = bones.  
nope. just feathers. maybe the bird got away. i hope.))


here's a graphic i found online. the words i've seen before...
but the way this one was done...with the wolf...and yin-yang...
it's very nice.

happy autumn!

well...stay cool.
wander. safely.
laura  :]