Friday, July 31, 2009

Shattered Dreams?

Sometimes I feel like this ...

Split personality.
Shattered dreams.
Broken promises.

But mostly I don't. :)

Sunday, July 26, 2009

My Dad

I hadn't seen Dad since the accident, so I jumped at the chance to drive down to my sister's house for a BBQ and visit. Dad was able to get up and go outside to the back deck - for the first time! We had a great visit, and my brother Mark surprised us by driving down all the way from his home in the Columbia Gorge.

There was a lot of family 'catching up' done, and dad enjoyed every minute. It's hard to believe that 3 weeks ago, this wonderful vibrant man was hurt so badly. Isn't he the cutest "grampa" ever?

Friday, July 24, 2009

Rhonda's Garden

I was leaving my cousin's house - admiring her many secluded little gardens, when I saw a butterfly. Then another! We spent a wonderful few minutes stalking pictures, then I had to go. Somehow I need to try to make more time for family. My cousin lives just a 10 minute walk away, and we haven't talked since last summer!!! I just hope she doesn't think I'm only coming over for the gardens ... and the butterflies ... :)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Take a Moment to Shine!

By day, the parrot-shaped ornament is rather dull and boring.
By early morning sunlight, it is transformed into a beacon of beauty.

Let the sun shine on our lives today ... because those around us love to see us all sparklie - no matter how boring we think our lives to be.

Monday, July 20, 2009

A Rose for Fred

Uncle Fred. Just saying his name brings a smile. Crotchety old guy, loud booming voice. Heart of gold. He grew up with my dad; his cousin. He called Dad brother though. "Not 'big' brother, older brother" (lifting himself tall, patting his round tummy).

He lives in Idaho. When he heard about Dad's accident, he climbed into his ancient motorhome and started driving. Claimed he had to visit his family in Washington. So he did, then drove all morning to get here.

He still had another 2 hour drive to see his 'older' brother, and I tried to get him to stop for a while to rest. His loud booming voice muted. No. I have to see him. Now. A tear; another. Now I had a tear; another. We mopped our eyes, and smiled. I gave him the address. He tottered back to his motorhome, and was gone.

He is now happily visiting his 'older brother'. The Best Medicine in the World. For both of them.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Harvey's Visit

Harvey helped pick blueberries. Unfortunately he could only carry a few at a time.

Working in the garden made him feel at home.

Gnome torture.

A visit with friends.

Tomorrow is the last day of Harvey's visit with me. To commemorate, he will be picking my Postcard Friendly Friday contribution on Random Cards. I can't wait to see which postcard he ends up with!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Locked and (Not!) Loaded

How many locks does it take to secure a gate?

I actually think there are more locks than there are chain links here. Does this seem very secure to you? I wonder if anybody even knows who they all belong to; somehow I don't think so. Hmmmm maybe I should add my own lock and see how long it takes for anybody to notice!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Pink Elephant On Parade!

I took this cloud shot near sunset the other evening. It had been raining hard, and we got a brief respite while the sun turned the world into a wonderland. Do you see the pink elephant? Doesn't he look happy to be parading across the evening sky?

Maybe he's happy because he has heard my dad is doing well after the car accident. He is improving some each day. It is still hard for him, as well as my mom and my beautiful sister Leigh with whom they are staying. Thank you all for your continued thoughts and prayers for my family. Your support means the world to us!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Harvey the Gnome is Traveling the World!

Introducing Harvey the gnome. He lives with the lovely Michelle over at

Harvey has gone walk-about via blogland this summer, and hopes to travel the world. I hope I can make his stay in Oregon a pleasant one!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Steady Light of Hope

There is a story behind this lamp. But first I have to say something about a very special person, Nina P., whose blog helped me so much today. I wanted so badly to visit my mom and dad, who is still in the hospital after their car accident. Time, money and other commitments have kept me home. I was stuck in a rut of blackness and despair ... so much responsibility, so much bitterness.

Then I read Nina P.'s blog ... about searching for and finding the steady light of hope. I was reminded of the story behind this lamp ... Thank you, Nina, from the bottom of my (chastened!) heart.

Now about the lamp ..... my mom bought this lamp, light bulb still inside, at a yard sale on the 4th of July while she was staying with my sister for a few days. She had it in the car when "the accident" happened. It, along with everything else in the car, tumbled and rolled up the freeway.

My sister found the lamp and brought it to me. It looked good, though a little wobbly. I plugged it in. The light bulb burned bright. The light bulb -- the one that tumbled with the car over and over -- still burned bright!!!

I found my steady light of hope, Nina P.!!!!!!! Thank you.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Tiger Lilies

Many years ago mom planted some tiger lilies near the serviceberry tree on the south edge of their property. Over the years the tree got bigger, blocking the sunlight. The lilies grew up, but didn't bloom. Last winter's snowstorms toppled the old tree. Now the lilies have plenty of light, and are blooming all over the place! On a downside, the blackberry vines are taking over as well. Sigh ... such is the price of beauty!

On a personal note - a heartfelt thank you to our friends and family all over the world who have been thinking of and/or praying for my family after my parents' car accident. UPDATE: Dad is doing much better! He is joking with the nurses, which is a very good sign. Mom has been caught laughing with her friends, which is also a very good sign. God bless you all.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

July Roses

Some beautiful July roses from our garden.
Who would have thought orange and pink would look good together?

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Bee Still ...

I was taking some pictures of blackberry blossoms when I saw this yellow jacket sitting quietly on a dead branch. So I snapped his picture. When I enlarged it, I realized I must have woken him up - he appears to be rubbing his eyes! Normally I hate yellow jackets, but this little fellow was just too cute!

On a personal note, my dad and mom were in a severe car accident yesterday. They were heading back from my sister's house and their car somehow left the freeway and flipped multiple times. Dad has a fractured vertebra in his neck (sounds much better than "he broke his neck"), and had to undergo hours of surgery to put his scalp back on. He will be in for a long recovery, but as I said in my other blog, the wonderful part is he WILL be in for a long recovery. God willing.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Nature's Fireworks




Grand Finale!!!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Unhand the Art!

It started with a note to herself, written on the back of her hand.
But she was bored and began to doodle.

One doodle became another, and then another still.
Time passed, but not a lot of time.

I caught her as she was getting ready to wash it off.
"Hey, you'd make a great tattoo artist" I said.

Maybe someday.
Until then, I have the unique privilege of finding her unexpected art in randomly unexpected places.

To see how detailed her "doodles" are, click on the picture to enlarge it.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The Butterfly in My Garden

“Happiness is a butterfly, which when pursued,
is always just beyond your grasp, but which,
if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you”
Nathaniel Hawthorne

The butterfly counts not months but moments,
and has time enough. ~Rabindranath Tagore

The butterfly is a flying flower,
The flower a tethered butterfly.
~Ponce Denis Écouchard Lebrun

May the wings of the butterfly kiss the sun
And find your shoulder to light on,
To bring you luck, happiness and riches
Today, tomorrow and beyond.
~Irish Blessing