A New Year

Today is New Year’s Day. A day of hope, of possibilities for the coming year.

However, we are faced with some things that may cause us to pause and wonder if we should be optimistic. The number of people affected by the new variant is continuously rising. Fires are raging in Colorado. As my sister so aptly put it ” Mother Nature isn’t so happy with us.” Every time I turn on the news, there seems to be another shooting.

I do have hope, though. We have a vaccine against the virus, when we wondered a year and a half ago whether it would be developed. It is now safe to be amongst our family and friends in small groups. We can hug again. And there is always the wonder, beauty and stillness of nature to find comfort and solace in.

As Mary Oliver writes, “into the world below like stars, or the feathers of some unimaginable bird that loves us, that is asleep now and silent-that has turned itself into snow.”

Take in the beauty of everyday. You are a gift to the world, and a gift to each other. Happy New Year.

Geysers and Gushes of Wonder

Recently, I was blessed to visit Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons. It has been on my “bucket list” for quite some time. So, I did it.

I love nature, I love hiking. But in Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons, the grandeur is amazing and full of wonder every place you turn.My cousin and her husband met me for part of the trip, and then for the other part of the trip I was on my own. We had planned it that way. My cousin Mary is quite knowledgeable about how to be safe in the woods. and knows so much about animals and plants. So often during the trip, I thought, can it get any better than this?

One of my favorite parts of the trip (and there are many) is going back to Yellowstone by myself. I loved the feeling of adventure, not knowing what the day will bring. I drove in and stopped at a pull off stop. One man I talked to said he had seen a bear about a mile down the road, in the stream looking for fish. I thought okay, let’s be careful. He left, another family came in who spoke another language who were very happy to be in the park. I asked if they wanted their picture taken. They were happy that I asked, and scurried into the picture. They took my picture, and off they went in their van. I was alone at the spot, and wonder of wonders, there was a trumpeter swan swimming, gliding in the lake. I watched, and smiled to myself. The ballet “Swan Lake” came to mind. There she was. I basked in her beauty, and left her to be alone to enjoy the day as much as I was.

Archangel Gabriel and The People’s Church

On the way to Harpswell, Maine one of my favorite places to vacation, I stopped in Newbury Port, Massachusetts. I love to stop at the People’s Church which has a beautiful Gabriel weathervane.¬† I look for the archangel¬† Gabriel weathervane when I can. I also have one in my backyard, where I sit and ponder. The archangel Gabriel means G-d is my strength in some religions. It is also my youngest son’s name, and my beloved Glenn’s Hebrew name.

Here he/she is giving me strength, and pause to wonder.

Walking in the Woods and My Spa

Today was hot. About 90 degrees. A friend and I decided to walk later in the day to avoid the heat. We went for a cool walk in the woods behind Maple Ave. School. Most of the spring flowers have blossomed, but I enjoyed the lovely leaves. I can still picture the fairies dancing under the may apple leaves

When I went home, I decided to have my own personal spa with the lawn sprinkler. It was wonderful. Cold well water spray squirting on me, and then spraying back to the flowers. On a hot day, what could be better? Not much. A felt like a kid dancing in the rain. I have to admit, I had a slight grin on my face.

Baby Robins Hatched..

Over the weekend while I was away, baby Robins Hatched from the eggs from the nest that was sitting on top of the outside lantern. I’m pretty thrilled! It’s fun to see mother nature so close, in all its simple glory. In the top photo you can see one of the baby birds sticking it’s neck out, waiting for food. The mama Robin is darting back and forth frantically trying to keep up with feeding them

I’m glad for the simple pleasure of watching them. Someday soon the babies will fly off. For now, I’m enjoy the moment.

Pretending to be in Ireland

Window in Watervliet, NY

Today I decided to take my “good” camera to be fixed, which had broken pre- pandemic. I had waited for a while for the repair place to be open, and on Monday, I discovered it wouldn’t be open until Wednesday. It is a good camera, and takes beautiful pictures. I had first used it on a trip to Africa when I volunteered there after retiring from teaching. I used a gift card from my colleagues to buy it. It was a sweet gift. On many levels, the camera is worth getting fixed. I drove to Latham where the shop was located, only to discover that the store had moved to Watervliet. Fine. I called the shop to make sure it was open. It was, and the man was pleasant. He remarked that “everything is going to hell anyway”. I laughed and agreed that the times were crazy with all this pandemic stuff.

I finally got to the repair shop, and left the camera to be repaired. Apparently, the card reader needs to be fixed. I remarked that I thought the back roads were kind of fun. The man said “yes I like these little towns.” I agreed, and said I could just picture a family barbecue at one of the houses.

My GPS took me the back way to Watervliet. I rather enjoyed the journey, taking me through Cohoes and Watervliet. I noticed that the old armory, built in the 1800s, had been beautifully painted and restored. It looked like it had been turned into apartments; one window on the very upper floor had a pretty lace curtain.

On the way through Watervliet, my Irish eyes had spotted an Irish pub, and I thought maybe I could wet my whistle. It looked like a decent place it had a sign on the door requesting that

“Gentlemen not Wear tank tops”. Hmm, I thought how quaint. There was noone in the place, and noone at the bar. I went to the kitchen, and asked if someone could come to the bar.

A gentleman appeared, I asked for a glass of water, and a half pint of Guinness. He was kind enough to warn me about the approaching rainstorm. I said that I would have it outside, and then be on my merry way.

I could have been a grumpy Gus, and been upset that I had to go a few extra miles to the repair shop. But, I thought I was lucky to see some different scenery and meet some decent folks. The leprechauns were with me.. The place did look like a pub in Ireland. And, I made it back through the rainstorm, in time to take my dog Trixie for a walk and to smell the lilacs.


End of hike Moreau Overlook Hike
Lake Bonita

I think the experiences have been embellished because I have had both Covid vaccines. I feel more freedom to go on hikes unmasked. I now can visit with family more easily, and that is a reason in itself to rejoice.

I’ve been lucky to be able to go on hikes with my hiking group as well as some friends lately. The wildflowers at this time of year are exquisite and the weather has been glorious.

Lake Bonita

On one hike, my friend pointed out the Mayapple, which has umbrella like leaves. The flowers are white, but they haven’t come out yet. The leaves are quite beautiful and I can imagine the fairies dancing underneath them.

I’m thankful for each day, for nature and that I can celebrate that we’ve come through Covid. Things are starting to come back. Can you dig it?

Wild Geraniums

Robin Red Breast

I have a Robin’s nest on my outside light door. She built it on the light because I guess she thought it was a good spot, out of harm’s way. Not the ideal spot for me, but I don’t mind so much. I’m glad that it’s there. Every time I try to get a photo of her on the nest up close, she flies away. I’ve been going out the garage door so as to disturb her as little as possible.

I’m so glad she’s there. The robin and her nest reminds me of the continuity of life, and how some things don’t change. I can’t wait until the babies hatch.

The Robin’s Nest

Daffodil Dreary Day

My Daffodils in the rain.

Today was a dreary, rainy day. I found myself focusing on the negative, rather than the positive. I waited for a service man to come all day. Turns out he did come but no one from the company told me he had come. ( I hadn’t heard him it was an outside job). Then he didn’t do the job right. So, I decided to do it myself ( Just like the little red hen when she made the bread herself after planting the wheat, growing the wheat and then ate the bread HERSELF). Then, a friend told me she didn’t want to go on a trip out west that I had so looked forward to after a year in Covid, isolated. At least now now But I understood. I am thinking a lot about making changes, big decisions.

All of these things seem kind of trivial, putting it in perspective. I’m here, my beloved family is here, my dear friends are here. Covid took none of us. Many people are grieving. Things are starting to open up . I can find solutions, I can go on another trip or find someone else to go with. I have strong faith in a spiritual presence. That’s all good.

Like the daffodils, I will survive the rain and start a new day. They’re still here, and so am I. I hope that after the rain, we can all see the rainbow. And like the little red hen, I will do it myself.

Passover and my birthday

This past weekend, it was my birthday as well as Passover. It was really special, because my children and Grandbabies came to visit. It was a joyous occasion, as we’ve been vaccinated, and could hug. Me hugging my Grandbabies. That’s the best thing! And of course, hugging my kids! We made a beautiful big fire in the fire pit outside, and enjoyed each moment. We had a lovely seder at night, a shortened version for the little ones.

Sea and Sky Quilt I made that I gave to one of my kids

The next day, we celebrated my birthday with a cake, and gifts. But, the greatest gift was being with my family. How sweet it is!!