Saturday, July 30, 2011

Christmas in July

Christmas in July, what a refreshing thought.
A few refreshing snowflakes, pretty lights, a crackling fire in the fireplace, and the smell of pine, on a night when it is 81 degrees and humid, these are pleasant thoughts, even for someone who dislikes winter as much as I do. Being soaked with sweat even when one is sitting still, is enough to make me reassess my opinion.
So I watched "A Christmas Story". and thought about what a great marketing idea Christmas in july is. In the soft glow of the "electric campfire" I relived the excitement of child hood Christmases, when I almost never got what I really wanted. Looking at all the wonderful toys and trinkets in Department Store, when there still were department stores, and talking to Santa, the sparkle and shine of decorations, a the anticipation that this might be the year that I would get that perfect gift.

Long ago I learned there is no perfect gift, even if you buy it for yourself. The good feelings are in the anticipation, the sharing and of course for me the decorating. The gift is the light is someone else's eyes.

Several years back, I made a Santa suit for my son. He only used it 3 or 4 times. One year iIwore it because a local group need a Santa and couldn't find one, Now with that in mind take a good look at this picture.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Check out this picture!

photo by

The man in this 1930's photo is dressed as "the hermit" in an unspecified play.
I really want to learn to wrap a blanket around me and have it look that cool and that warm.
Doesn't he look like he is enjoying his role?
He looks to me like he is about to say say "A change is as good as a rest."

Saturday, July 23, 2011

One hot day....

I got up really early, trying to get done picking and then weeding before it got too hot. Lifting back the old curtains I keep on the blueberries to hide them from all but the most clever birds.
Huge , sweet, berries awaited me, also a few spiders and earwigs, still the berries fairy rolled into my hands and from there into the little pail. Well most of them anyway, as berry picking has its own reward.

And there was the moon, at first I wasn't sure, and it was so faint that it took several photos to get a decent one, gotta love that about digital photography, you are only limited by the capacity of your card.

There was something moving about in the bee balm, a butterfly caught in a spider's web, I reached in and broke the web, and of he or she flew.

It seemed as good a day as any for a walk down the path, past the apple tree, which has the sweetest apples, great for applesause, even if it is a little meaty.

There are usually a few spots along the path that are muddy, but not today! Set me to wondering, just how dry was the ground??? This is a small patch dug up along the edge of the garden. Hard as a rock and dry as bone.

Friday, July 22, 2011

"send for Tiger Lily"

I can remember the the first time I saw Peter Pan, with Mary Martin. And she and Tiger Lily, were singing back "send for Tiger Lily- send for Peter Pan". I am sure that I didn't know what a Tiger Lily was, but I knew it was a beautiful name. When summer came I learned that Tiger Lilys were the name given to those huge reddish flowers that grew along the path to the cow pasture. Not far from the huckleberry bushes. Coming as they do when the first berrys are ripe and the first of the beans and zucchini are table ready, they announce the coming bounty and beauty of later summer.
I have edited the song a bit, left out the chourus of nonsense words that were such to sing over and over, when I was playing.

When we get in trouble
There s just one thing to do

Peter Pan:
I'll just send for Tiger Lily

Tiger Lily:
I'll send for Peter Pan

We ll be coming willy-nilly, Lily

Tiger Lily:
Beat on a drum
And I will come

Peter Pan:
And I will come and save the brave noble red skin

ALL:. when you get in trouble
And you're took away by Captain Hook

Peter Pan:
I'll just send for Tiger Lily

Tiger Lily:
I'll send for Peter Pan

We'll be coming willy-nilly, Lily

Peter Pan:
Send up a flare

Tiger Lily:
And I'll be there

And you know
You got a friend a friend
We ll be true blood brothers till the
End--the end
We're brothers till the

For the last week the roadside and my garden have been filled with color by the Tiger Lily, though I have learned that it is usually actually the red or wild lily(Lilium philadelphicum), one of the first wild plants I added to my garden, they grew in every roadside ditch, so why not my yard. I was surprised to learn that they are a Native plant, as some regard these as a weed and some like me relish their brilliant splashed of color. The Plains Indians used the root of the red lily much like we use the potato. I was also amazed to learn that the lily family (Liliaceae) also includes the edible onion, garlic, and asparagus, and contains poisonous the plants death camas and hellebore. If you are tempted to try an grow these fiery beauties you will find they take root easily , love a bit of shade and came become invasive, very quickly.

The true Tiger Lily (Lilium lancifolium) is grown in the Orient for it's edible root.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

noted in passing

All us little kiddles were herded into the Auditorium, which was a big deal in and of itself, to watch
John Glen trip into space. There was a large, by the standards of the day black and white TV, and there we sat more or less silently for most of the day, For weeks afterward everyone was playing astronaut.

And on a sweltering day, much like yesterday but it was July 20th 1969, Neil Armstrong landed on the moon...his actual first words from the surface of the moon were something like "it's fine dust I can kick it with my toe"


(John Stewart) The Kingston Trio

Black boy in Chicago, playing in the street
Hasn't many clothes to wear, hasn't much to eat
Don't you know he saw it on a July afternoon
He saw a man named Armstrong who walked upon the moon

Young girl in Calcutta, she's barely eight years old
The flies that swarm the market place will see she don't grow old
But don't you know she heard it on a July afternoon
She heard a man named Armstrong had walked upon the moon

Our rivers are getting dirty and the air is getting bad
Sometimes it seems like war and hate are the only things we've had
Yet all the world stopped to watch on a July afternoon
To watch a man named Armstrong who walked upon the moon

And I wonder if somewhere long ago in this universe
Did they watch a man named Adam who walked upon the earth

(as sung by Iain MacKintosh)

My son and I walked up to the General Store and Post office to pick up our mail. Bill who ran the store/postoffice had the TV on, the Space shuttle had exploded on lift off. We watched the scene repeated over and over again, mouths agape and eyes and hearts disbelieving/

With today's space shuttle return, the program quietly becomes history, I wonder if anyone is watching us from a distance.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

They are for the birds!!!!!

When we moved into this house in the early 80's there was a sprawling raspberry patch and a large currant bush behind the tumbled down brooder house, The brooder house is gone,having spent time as a storage shed, a play house and a greenhouse before it was taken down and replaced with an herb garden. And the raspberries, which always held several birds nest,perfect for watching baby birds grow and fledge, have migrated themselves to another location.
Now there are blueberries, surrounded by mint and sage growing growing rampant in what was once an herb garden, where the brooder house used to be. These free ranging plants release their delicious fragrances when I brush against as I pick berries, refreshing in the very hot weather, and just plain nice any old time.
Over the years I have learned that currants are no ones favorite. Yhough when he was little my son did love to hide inside the currant bushes and eat green currants, he has since come to agree with me that currants are for the birds. The couple who once lived her for about 50 years had a small farm, with chickens and rabbits, they ever grew the corn for the chickens, kept the currant bush covered with old curtains, to keep the birds from picking them before they could.
I can look out of the kitchen window, one of the few windows we didn't replace, and see a bird swooping down for a treat and taking off. A sight that would have upset the former owners.
I wonder what they made from them, I have tried many ways to use this tangy berry: made then into jelly, straight and mixed with other berries and fruit, made wine and brandy from them dried them for use in breads and even made tea from them...but I must say, that the main reason that I still tend this ancient shrub is to provide a food source for the birds.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Tigerlily Moon

I have spent the last few nights watching the waxing gibbous moon grow to full. The skys have been unusably clear and the the nights pleasantly cool, not the usual heat and humidity that lead me to call this the "Green Bread Moon". Last nights moon rose through a haze of thin clouds, looking soft and other worldly, but just out of 'phocus' in the photo. Reality can get in the way at the most inconvenient times. I watched , and drifted along with it.
The tigerlilies, are so beautiful this year, that when i was out running errands I had to stop and just look at them, and wonder why this wasn't called the tigerlily moon. So onto Google where I found this wonderful list. A list of names I want to add the Tigerlily Moon to.
Blackberry Moon ~other
Little Ripening Moon ~Creek
Blessing Moon ~Dark Janic
Blood Moon ~other
Buck Moon ~Algonquin
Buffalo Bellow Moon ~Omaha, Arapaho
Claiming Moon ~Celtic, Janic (full)
Corn Popping Moon ~Winnebago
Crane Moon ~Choctaw
Dropping Deer Horns Moon ~Kiowa
Ducks Moult Moon ~Cree
Fallow Moon ~other
Grain Moon ~other
Grass Cutter Moon ~Abernaki
Hay Moon ~Cherokee, Algonquin
Horse Moon ~Apache
Hungry Ghost Moon ~Chinese
Little Harvest Moon ~Creek
Little Ripening Moon ~Creek
Mead Moon ~Medieval English
Meadow Moon ~other
Middle Summer Moon ~Ponca, Dakota
Peaches Moon ~Natchez
Raptor Moon ~Hopi
Raspberry Moon ~Anishnaabe
Red Berries moon ~Assiniboine
Ripe Corn Moon ~Cherokee
Ripe Moon ~San Juan, Apache
Ripe Squash Moon ~Agonquin
Ripening Moon ~Mohawk, Passamaquoddy
Rose Moon ~Neo Pagan
Salmon River Moon ~Wishram
Smoky Moon ~Maidu
Summer Moon ~Colonial American, Algonquin
Sun House Moon ~Taos Native American
Thunder Moon ~Algonquin
Wild Red Cherries Moon ~Sioux
Wort Moon ~other
Young Corn Moon ~Potawatom
~~Everything Under the Moon

Monday, July 11, 2011

if wishes

There are so many things to wonder about and so many things to wonder at, I could easily spend all of my time doing that.

The rest of the time, I think I would like to go for rides on my dragon

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Stranger than fiction

There were some strange forces at work yesterday.
I had planned a quick trip to the grocery and then an afternoon of picking berries, well not even close!!!!
By the time my boys were done with their wish lists, rationalized by why waste the gas on several trips, I had an all day list of errands, and one of them coming with we because he needed shoes for winter. I should have known there were strange forces at work in the universe then, but I didn't.
I stopped for gas and a can of snuff, and the people ahead of me were talking about getting new windshield wipers for winter.
At the post office the discussion was about Christmas cards and how the new rules would effect them.
Next stop, a fellow who was waiting in the checkout line said he had better things to do than wait in line, this year he was going to ride every possible weekend so that he wouldn't be upset with himself when "the snow was deep".
Next stop, I was asked if I knew anything about woodburning as it looked like a good hobby for this winter.
Next stop was KMart, son got his winter shoes and at my urging, which stopped short of offering to pay for them, some steel toed sneakers to use now.
finally the grocery store, they were having a great sale on Red Rose tea, the tea is pretty good stuff! OK, Ya got me I'm a sucker for those little figurines. I have boxes of them. Anyway I bought several, OK half a cartload of boxes of Red rose, the clerk was chatty which I normally would have liked but he asked me if I was stocking up for winter. NO comment!!!
Homeward bound at last, son was drop dead hungry and suggested we get a hoagie and stop at the marina by the bridge, before he was taken seriously week and I was arrested for child abuse.

The parking lot was empty, we had the place to ourselves!!! I was delighted. He was bummed out because no girls were swimming. He grabbed up the bag of food that I had sent him into shop for since he offered to buy and I just might have committed violence if one more person said anything to me about any season other than the current one; WOW! something in that sack smelled great.
I grabbed my camera, I hadn't seen a single thing worth the effort of taking my camera out of the case.
We found a friendly looking rock to sit on and started to tasted as good as it smelled, may-be better.

There were some ducks near the bridge, so I took the camera out of it's case. At that instant a older, well dressed man with flowing hair and beard appeared, he was carrying a Hasselblad, my dream camera. He said "hello" and son offered him a donut...really son doesn't part with a donut very often, I almost passed out from shock.
After several minutes of swooning over son's newly acquired politeness. I regained my composure.
He and the old man were still talking. the old man the turned to me and said "The light is beautiful today." Clear, sorta unearthly." And he was right. the light was amazing. "On of those days when you can see through time he said." He bowed slightly and walked away.

We rode home in total silence; no music, no talking, no nothing.
After we hauled all of our purchases into the house I stepped outside, and took this photo.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Awesomenss of apple trees

It really doen't ;ook that out of the ordinary, does it?

It's just a log from a fallen apple tree.

I took these picture this morning, the free fell last December.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Being caught without a camera

Twice this week I have wished I had my camera with me. Once when 2 fawns came charging out of the woods, paused and raced back. And again today as a huge bird. probably a turkey vulture soared effortlessly above the highway.

It has become too hot to enjoy working in the afternoon sun, however I can still enjoy the trees, soaking up the lush colors and textures, watching the ever changing pattern of light and shade. and just letting my mind and imagination drift along on the few clouds in the soft blue sky.

The trees have been here a long time some since the days of the Civil war, remainders of an orchard planted by someone whos name if it ever was recorded has been lost, each year I thank him or her for the excellent apples, every few years another tree falls to a storm or lightening.
Then there are the huge shade tree, planted in the 1930s, believed to be discards from the CCC Camps, the Civilian Conservation Corps; who came to these small towns during the Depression Era, and some of the just stayed.

I can't help but wonder if trees have memories, they must have something like that. I wonder if anyone will ever know, or in their enormous size and age, they regard the works of man as a mere nuisance, or sheer folly. I would like to think that they look at us with curiosity, and a bit more dignity than we look at rabbits and the other creatures. I fear they think of us a murderers.

Silent Sunday~~~Hedgehog Picnic

thanks Coleman