Thursday, September 29, 2011

Thankful Thursday

I’m kind of sad today – my Atlanta Braves took a September nosedive & their season ended last night. The hated and despised disliked St. Louis Cardinals surged from behind & now they’re going to be in the playoffs instead. It’s the kind of thing that will crush your soul, if you let it. Especially when you stay up until nearly midnight to watch the demise. Sigh.

BUT, today is Thankful Thursday so I will try to make lemonade out of these here lemons.

• I’m thankful that I have several teams to pull for during post season baseball. They might not be my team, but they’re worthy. Namely, the teams playing against the Yankees and the Cardinals.

• I’m extra thankful that I decided to work last Friday after all & I’m taking tomorrow off instead.

• Tomorrow is the Big Hair Day. The day I get my hair cut, not the day I wear big hair. Although who knows how my hairdresser will style it – it could be big hair. Boy, this is a very boring bullet point. STOP TALKING ABOUT YOUR HAIR!

• I’m thankful that I only had to manage my cane, all the multitudinous bags I carry and an umbrella one day this week.

OK, I’m still kind of sad about the Braves, but I like my lemonade a little on the tart side anyway. What are you thankful for today?

Tuesday, September 27, 2011



I lift my arms to feel
the power of the deluge -
my face turned up
into driving rain.

Well, I feel…wet.
Sort of drippy.
And I can’t really see.
My dress is plastered
and my hair -
well the less said
about my hair
the better.

So, the power
isn’t in the deluge
or in the discomfort.

The power is in
my winged mind
as it hastens through
the pouring rain
toward the sun.

This is a Magpie Tale.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Monday Miscellany

I’m writing Monday Miscellany on Sunday night because… well I don’t really know why. I just am. So, let’s get to it!

·         Dr. M went to the Renaissance Festival today. He always takes the history club every year. This year he decided to dress like a pirate. Doesn’t he look dashing? 

He bought me a fabulous anniversary gift (2 ½ months early – this is typical for us). I’ll post a picture on my P365 post next Saturday.

·         I did church-type stuff instead. We’re having a bishop visit next Sunday so we’ve been practicing an anthem. Fortunately it’s one we’ve done before. Unfortunately I’m singing a verse all on my own. But I’m not nervous. And that makes me nervous.

·         I was thinking today that I’m not really cut out to be a choir member. We don’t have a director right now, so I’m singing extra loud so that the other choir members can follow along on unfamiliar hymns (thanks Mom & Dad for 8 years of piano lessons – I’m using that music reading ability every week!). But doesn’t it annoy you when you’re listening to a choir & all you can hear is one obnoxious alto who’s trying to sing soprano to keep everyone on rhythm? Especially when said pseudo soprano is rhythmically challenged? Or is that just me? (It really is me – I’m so sorry Christ Episcopal!).

·         I had this big list of things to do while Dr. M was gone. And I did a number of them. Imagine my surprise when the end of the day came & I had somehow managed to not vacuum. I really don’t know how that happened. But I swept out the garage so at least some flooring type surface is a little cleaner.

·         I’m getting a cut & color on Friday. I was trying to figure out the last time I had my hair cut – the last appointment I show on my calendar was December! I know I’m cheap & lazy, but I can’t believe that I went that long without a haircut. Although I threatened to get a pixie cut while I was sweating in my choir robe this morning, I will most likely just get a couple of inches cut off. I know that you were going to have trouble starting your week without that bit of knowledge.

Well, it’s time to call Daddy for our weekly chat. Hope everyone has a great week!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

2011 Project 365 – Week Thirty-Nine

I’m going to try something new here on the old blog. I love it when someone comments on a comment I make on their post. I don’t expect it, always, but I think it’s fun when there’s a conversation going on in the comments. So, I’m going to experiment with inserting my thoughts in the comments from time to time. I’m letting you know because if you’re like me you don’t always go back to read other people’s comments if you know there won’t be a conversation. Who has the time? We’ll see how it goes.

Also, we often get questions about what type of camera we have. We use two. I’m going to put the specs on those two cameras at the bottom of each P365 post so you’ll be able to find them if you’re interested.

Sunday, September 18th   
The geraniums are still going strong. Love this shot that Dr. M took of a bee.

Squirrel in motion! Dr. M was taking a picture of the squirrel at the bottom of the picture (burrowing his nose into the ground) & got a bonus leaping squirrel. Fun!

Monday, September 19th
We’re going to have to move this feeder somewhere else. The squirrels just ate practically the whole block in one day. But watching their acrobatics is pretty darn entertaining.

Tomato Ripening Station in the rain. We’re hoping we get enough sun to ripen these outside. Otherwise it’s wrapped in newspaper & put into a dark box for these guys.

Tuesday, September 20th  
I snuck & took this picture of Dr. M & our neighbor K talking over the fence.

Wednesday, September 21st
Dr. M took some pictures on his way home from school. Here are some cows.

I never get tired of the golden soybean fields.

Horses. You notice how the animals all stare at Dr. M? “It’s that man with a camera again. Is he a spy?”

Thursday, September 22nd        
Happy birthday Amy! Hope Daddy took you out somewhere special today. Meanwhile, I tried to do this.

But my iron was one point too low. The State of the Bug - iron deficient (just a little bit). I got the Sticker of Shame (I just made that up).

On my way home this lovely sheep sighting lifted my spirits!

Friday, September 23rd
More pictures from Dr. M on his way home from school. It’s definitely fall now! I love the geese in the cornfield.


A flash of yellow rising up from the spent field.

One of our favorite trees in the fall.

Saturday, September 24th
We’re having a lazy day. I ended up working yesterday after all & planned to take care of my list today. Um, yeah, right. Heh. I think I will probably dust at some point, but otherwise it’s been nice to just hang out & get more familiar with the new Facebook changes. This is one of the things we’re doing - watching baseball. Our Braves are really killing us – so close to clinching the wild card & yet they keep losing games. I love that we can hook Dr. M’s computer up to the TV & watch the games (sadly, Ohio is not considered the south so we can’t get the games on Fox Sports South – imagine that!) – MLB TV has totally been worth the expense for us this year!

Go to Sara’s blog here to see the blogs of all the other Project 365 participants. Have a great week!

Most of our photos are taken with a 12 megapixel Nikon D5000 DSLR, using a 55-200mm zoom lens. This is the camera that Dr. M takes with him most days. We also take pictures with our old reliable 7 megapixel Canon Powershot A710. This is the camera that the Bug uses most of the time. If you’re interested in which camera was used for a particular shot, just ask!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Fictional Jam

Barbara at the Poetry Jam has given us this prompt:

...It's the details of those made-up worlds that get me buzzed. What would Scarlet O'Hara's curtain dress smell like? (or the inside of the Trojan horse) What would an adult, looking out the kitchen window, see when we know Snoopy is at this typewriter? Give us a little something that never made it into the story. Awful. Wonderful. Awfully silly.

Here's my (awfully) silly response :)

Mary’s Desk

She thought she could
probably just fit
(dried up gum
brushing her hair).
Sinking below the
cacophony she
closed her eyes.
It smelt of shoes
and chalk and paste
and, distressingly,
it smelt a bit
like wool.

Not sure what I'm talking about? Go here. And go here to read other responses to the prompt.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Thankful Thursday

I’m rummaging around in my brain trying to find things to be thankful for today. Hmmm…

  • Well, it’s Amy’s birthday today. I’m pretty thankful for her & her presence in my dad’s life. Happy Birthday Amy!
  • I’m so thankful for all the responses to my post about grief. You guys had some great stuff to say – thanks!
  • I took a walk around the block last night! I was really wiped out afterward, but I didn’t have any trouble doing it. I even walked for a few yards without my cane. I’m pretty excited. I hope to do this every evening I can. Of course, in the not too distant future it will be dark before I get home, but hey I could take a flashlight! And since we’re planning a trip to Chicago in January (history conference – woot!) & will be doing a lot of walking there, I want to do some winter weather walking anyway to get myself ready. Snow sprints here I come! Maybe not – that might create a “knotted plow line” scenario with Dr. M.
  • This one is a mixed thanksgiving. I tried to give blood today but was refused because my iron isn’t high enough – by one measly point. I wasn’t totally surprised because I’ve been eating a lot of ice lately, but one point low isn’t too bad. So I’m thankful that my iron isn’t so low that I’ll fall over any time soon (except for my general klutziness – I’ll fall over from that I’m sure), but sad that I couldn’t give blood. I took my camera after all so I could get a State of the Bug picture. Now we’ll have a whole different kind of State of the Bug.
  • I’m taking the day off tomorrow just because. Though I’ve already scheduled a full day’s worth of work to do at home. My goal is to have no chores remaining for Saturday or Sunday.
So, what are you thankful for today?

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Diamonds Outweigh the Grief

I had trouble falling asleep last night. It took as many as twenty minutes for me to reach oblivion. A long time for me.

I had an image that kept flashing through my head. I tried brushing it aside with visions of sugarplums, but it was a persistent bugger.

It was that time in the hospital when we had decided to take Mom off the cancer study (because it seemed to be killing her faster than the cancer) and we had Hospice come in to talk her about using their services at home. I was the only family member in the room and she turned to me in a panic. “That sounds like you think I’m dying! Do you think I’m dying?” Only every time I look at you mom.

That’s not what I said. I didn’t answer her question – I just said that we thought she’d be a lot more comfortable at home and that Hospice could help with that. And she was a lot more comfortable for the next three months.

I’ve replayed that scene in my head a million times since then. I think I gave the right answer. She didn’t want to think about death. She never did.

When she gave me her diamond earrings the last time I saw her she said, “it’s just that they’re too big for my head now.”

It’s been 6 years, 183 days since she breathed her last. I would have thought that the random huge grief would lessen with time. I guess not yet. Not yet.

And I have to admit that losing a mother is just about the most enormous thing a person faces – bigger even than diamond earrings.

I’m thinking today of people who’ve lost their mothers recently, especially Dr. M, Chris, Rachel and Rebecca. Hoping the diamonds outweigh the grief most of the time.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Monday Miscellany – Or, Not, Actually

No miscellany today – sorry! I was intrigued by this week’s Magpie prompt & thought I’d write some obscure paean to snakes or some such. But then the poem took a totally different turn, as they often do. Please go here to read other responses to the prompt.

Please note: I am not PMSing right now, but this is a good representation of what it’s like when I am. Heh.

The Snake Charmer, Henri Rousseau, 1907

I don’t want to be charmed
or sigh with love.
There is that damned tree again
just begging to be scaled.
I sit with my back to the trunk
watching the moon through
leaves and unnamed dread.
I refuse to name it
because it is legion
and there aren’t enough words.
Rising from mossy ground
I wrap Legion around my neck.
I am going to carry it
with me today
and people will cross
to the other side of the street
in fear and loathing.
See? I knew that no one liked me.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

2011 Project 365 – Week Thirty-Eight

Well it turned fall here in Ohio – it’s just about time to break out my electric blanket. Hope you all had a good week – mine was pretty quiet, just the way I like it.

Sunday, September 11th   
A big anniversary today. Go here to read my story about it. Dr. M hit the hummingbird jackpot on this day. He posted these pictures to Facebook & I’m just going to use his captions. Pretty hummer!

Life is pretty good.

Sunday brunch at Chez Rhyne, yes?

I say yes!

That hit the spot!

Just going to top off the tank with some geranium…

I LOVE this place!

Monday, September 12th
This sunflower field is just about done. I wanted to have Dr. M take a picture of me standing in front of it so it looked like they were bowing to me, but we never made the time. Darn.

Full moon.

Tuesday, September 13th  
The Tax Time Pig remembers.

Wednesday, September 14th  
The State of the Bug. I finally dug out the earring that I lost in my car. It was surprisingly easy – I just moved the seat all the way up & there it was. Why I couldn’t figure that out in July is a mystery to me. I was really trying to capture my hair in this picture – I thought it looked really old fashioned the way it sort of drooped over my ears. But you can’t really tell. Just think Ma Ingalls.

Dr. M took a picture of a hawk he sees frequently. He’s named it Tecumseh because it hangs out around the historical marker for Tecumseh’s birth place.

This soybean field totally looks like fall, doesn’t it?

The neighbor told us about an albino squirrel sighting. He & Dr. M tracked it down so he could take some pictures – isn’t it cute? He put more pictures & talked about albino & white squirrels on his blog - check it out here

Thursday, September 15th        
Mom & kids.

This flower (snapdragon?) just spontaneously grew between the house & the hedge out front. Dr. M just happened to look back there the other day & saw it.

Friday, September 16th
We’re finally seeing some goldfinches pretty regularly.

Dr. M had a rough week. When he got home he put on this tshirt which reflects his feelings exactly.

Saturday, September 17th
Happy birthday Daddy! Your card is probably going to be late. Dr. M took a picture of one of our last daisies of the season.

Flags. It’s Constitution Day – did you know? Dr. M told me yesterday that it would be today, and yet when I was reading my “This Day in History” widget on my google homepage I announced to him, “Today’s the day the constitution was signed!” Um, yeah Bug, that would be why they call it Constitution Day.

We spent most of today up at the Piatt Castles. This year begins the commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Civil War. The Castles are participating in the events being held as part of Ohio’s Civil War 150 commemoration. Today there were talks about medicine in the Civil War (I skipped that one), Ohio women in the Civil War (excellent), and a poet connected with the Castles who lived during the Civil War (Sarah Piatt – again an excellent talk). There were other exhibits & activities. And it was a beautiful day. We had a great time!

Go to Sara’s blog here to see the blogs of all the other Project 365 participants. Have a great week!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Secret Jam

Dani from Haiku Love Songs is making the Jam this week. She has given us several images from which to get our inspiration. The photos were taken by Ainsley Allmark at Dolphin Visions. They're all really lovely - you should go here to see the other options and to check out what other poets did with them. Here is mine.

The Tree of You
I know I’m not your first love.
For example, there’s always
been Stevie with her
gravel & grace.
You have your secret dreams
and secret places.
I want to march through
that forest with the
gibbous moon
for cold company.
I want to climb into
the tree of you
and pluck your hidden
thoughts like ripe apples.
Then I catch sight of you
at the edge of the meadow.
You have your walking stick
in your right hand and
illumination in your left hand.
Carrying a basket to hold the fruit,
I follow.

2024 Project 365 – Week Eight

There are five photos of me this week (I’m counting Sunday as one photo) and in each one I’m wearing a different glasses topper. But I’m not...