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Wednesday, April 30, 2008

My Peony Plant

Here's today's photo of a bit more of the budding peony plant. There are five buds on the plant, but only two visible in this photo. Lots of leaves! It was in the garden when I moved here which was 15 years ago. Wow! I didn't realize I'd been here that long!

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I found a very interesting site about the care and cultivation of peonies, and was amazed to read that a peony clump can survive for 50 years, and that they have been cultivated in home gardens for more than 600 years!

http://www.thegardenhelper.com/peony.html

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Sunday 's Blooms

On Sunday, I looked around the garden and here are some of my discoveries ~ the beginning of a strawberry in a front window box, the peony still in bud, mock orange flower starting to open, and the red camellias in various stages of development...

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Cherry Blossom Time

Cherry Blossom Time, music by Kotaro Oshio




My cherry tree slideshow and poem


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...and a video to put it all together, ending with yozakura, which means night cherry blossoms.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Breathless!

With all of this talk of rain, here's a poem I wrote a couple of years ago, although it sounds like a wrote it after a drought, not after a long cold and wet winter!!

Breathless

So breathless, running through the rain soaked street,
Exploding puddles leap and splatter wide.
Umbrellas pop, while others duck inside,
As laughter splashes on with soggy feet.

A cleansing freshness flowing down my face,
Unlike those tears of sadness that I’ve shed,
This rain replenishes my thirst, instead.
I run with rain and let it set the pace.

Why hide from nature’s tears that fill a void,
For flowers bow their heads, as if in thanks;
Dry riverbeds at last, embrace their banks.
The cycle turns; a time to be enjoyed.

So breathless, running through the rain soaked street,
As laughter splashes on with soggy feet.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Priceless!

Some days, the sights that meet my eyes are priceless. Yesterday on the school ground I saw a visiting "sibling" and she was so cute!

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Today in the Kindergarten class, I met some newborn chicks, and ones that were a titch older ~

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Sunday, April 20, 2008

Having your cake...

Next month, a friend of mine is retiring, and is celebrating by having a BBQ ~ hamburgers, to be exact - beef, salmon or veggie. I, in my wisdom, offered to make a cake...not just any cake, mind you, but a hamburger cake.

The first time I made one of these was back in 1991 when I worked with the person who is retiring. I have made one other hamburger cake since then. So this will be my third ~ they are huge things, with white/yellow cake for the top part of the "bun", chocolate cake for the "meat" and white/yellow cake for the bottom of the "bun". The lettuce, cheese, and tomatoes are made from a marzipan recipe. I make the cakes the day before and then ice and put them together the next. I had no idea how the first one would turn out, but I was pleasantly surprised ~ who wouldn't be at 3 a.m. when I finally got it all together!

I was hunting up a photo of my original hamburger cake, and came across other cakes I have made ~ I have put together a little slide show of some of them. Some are made using forms, but others are just 'made up'. The guitar cake was made for my son ...it said "No reason to fret..." The most challenging was the Harley Davidson cake I made a couple of years ago. I made up a pattern and then spent a lot of time checking out motorcycles envisioning what I could use for certain parts. I had a few biker guys wondering why I was checking out their bikes so carefully. It took me three days to frost it..each night I put it in the big freezer and it just fit ~ being about 3 feet in length. I was able to find some edible metal icing paint to make it look more realistic.

Anyway, here's a sampling:

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Snow Blossom!

I'll let this morning's photos speak for themselves!


Looking out of the front door ~

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Front yard with a sweet pea peeking from the window box...

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Bird house and cherry tree in the back yard:

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Cherry blossom!

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For Frog Morton and Flighty ~ The snow was just perfect to make a ....

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Thursday, April 17, 2008

Birthday and Blossoms

Today was a friend's birthday, so I bought her some roses ~ She has just phoned me to say that they are exquisite in the natural light at home. She is having family and guests over for her grandson's Christening on Sunday, so she says the roses have added a special touch!
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Also today, I noticed a few cherry blossoms opening up, however they are too high to take a close-up. Here's how the buds look at eye level ~ it won't be long :)

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I have enjoyed reading Daffy's recent snoring post, and have learned quite a bit about wood pigeons in the process ;)

Monday, April 14, 2008

A Walk in the Park

While I was away on the weekend, I took the opportunity to check out the park to see how spring was progressing. Here are a couple of slideshows to share some of the sights. There was a lovely variety of spring flowers and blossoms. The wallflowers were not quite opened, so I must go back in a couple of weeks to breathe in that fragrance! By the way, the rooster and hen were taken through the fence to the Children's Farm section.




This next group of photos shows some close-ups ~ notice the brilliance of the centre of the tulip. Also there is the teeniest bird nearly blended in with the bark of a tree ~ I think the bird might be a nuthatch. The view of the Olympic Mountains was taken from the lookout section of the park overlooking the Strait of Juan de Fuca.


Sunday, April 13, 2008

The 'Pane' of Separation

This talk of frogs has reminded me of a love story. A couple of years ago, I heard a little croaking sound coming from the area of the kitchen window box, and each night it would be the same. One night I happened to see something on the window pane, and there he was ~ a little tree frog ~ and he was looking into the eyes of the little frog ornament (just his size) that was hanging off a tulip bowl on the inside window ledge. By the time I got my camera and took a photo, he had moved farther up the window pane. It was so bittersweet, much like many other love stories, I suppose. She still looks out of the window, and I wonder if she waits for him to reappear.

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Thursday, April 10, 2008

A Call to Green

This is a bit of an experiment. I heard the frog chorus or orchestra as I seemed to call it, and went out in the night with my camera on movie mode, in hopes of recording it to go with my poem, "A Call to Green". It seems to take some loading time...would appreciate knowing if it works for you or not.



The call came through last night, the call to green.
It may have throbbed at first from cattail bog,
perhaps a throaty gurgling sound, a frog,
from deep within, a heartbeat called, unseen.

A silence in transition hushed the air
as crinolines of white revealed their charms
and verdant sleeves slipped over waiting arms ~
a change of dress for springtime’s next affair.

As dawn approached a chorus met her ears.
Excitement rustled youthfully with breeze,
while conifers stood proudly, quite at ease,
displaying tufts of growth like tiny spears.

The call came through last night, the call to green,
from deep within, a heartbeat called, unseen.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Monday, April 7, 2008

Two bee, or not two bee?

The first apricot blossom has popped. Calling all bees!

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I thought I'd check around to see if there were any busy bees buzzing, when something caught my eye poking out of one of the winter rhododendrons...I think it was a bee-hind...

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Ah ha! There he is ~

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He then dive bombed me, so I left...really quickly.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Spirit Star

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She fills my eye with wonderment,
This small, yet vibrant thing,
Appearing as she does each year
To introduce the spring.

She somehow makes it through the ground,
Through mulch and winter scraps,
To add a touch of brilliance
And gives a chance, perhaps

To pause, and take the wonder in,
To ponder on the sight,
And realize that what is seen
Is nature's own delight.

Her star invites a wish to share
Her iridescent charm,
Yet also serves to warn away
All those who cause her harm.

Her petals, to a human eye,
So heart-shaped, pure and true,
Appear to others differently,
As most things tend to do,

For some can see the day as night,
Where stars shine from the ground,
When passion flies on rhythmic wings,
And hums its honeyed sound.

Ah, little primrose, do you know
What wondrous seeds you’ve sown?
I’ve glimpsed a world through other eyes
And seen it as my own.

A spirit star in just one face
To show, without a doubt,
That beauty glows from deep within
And radiates throughout.


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GC 2008

Friday, April 4, 2008

Flush and Overflowing

A dripping toilet tank can be a test
to see if you or it will come out best.
An irritating dribbling from a hose,
like someone whistling while he holds his nose,
can indicate a challenge to be met.
This is a day that I won’t soon forget.

I fiddled with a screw or two at first
adjusting things with hands that were submersed.
This didn’t help a bit and things got worse…
I headed to the hardware store with purse.

I looked at each and every plumbing part
and wondered where on earth I’d ever start.
A toilet tank repair kit caught my eye…
Of course, that was the very thing to buy.

I’d rip the innards from that toilet tank,
a turn, a twist and one almighty yank…
then set in place this kit, pristine, so new.
I smiled because I knew just what to do.

I shut the water off, then gave a flush
and heard, relieved, its gasp, its final gush.
A folded towel placed upon the floor,
precautionary measure, nothing more…

I wiggle-twisted down beside the bowl
with crescent wrench in hand to free the hole
of pipes with nuts and bolts and other stuff
that held it all together…it was tough
but still I persevered until at last
things fell apart; like fate, the die was cast.

Old innards sat detached in laundry sink
while I perused their set up, time to think…

Attaching parts and pieces of the kit,
replacing inner workings bit by bit,
returning now beneath to reconnect
not long until the time I can inspect…

All set to turn the valve the other way.
OH NO, the water leaks…spurts out in spray…
turn off the valve, my eyes and mouth agape!
Just wait, I’ll reach for Teflon sealant tape.

Once more, the crescent wrench will turn the tides…
a quick adjustment ‘til the spray subsides.

The tank is filling slowly, levels rise,
as spirits sink, collapsing in surprise,
for water doesn’t stop…as still it goes
in waterfalls down tube of overflows.

A call for help, I reach now for the phone
explaining what I’ve done all on my own.
I take three photos of the task at hand
and email them so he can understand.

He lets me know which screw to turn, adjust…
Thank goodness there is someone I can trust
to help me when it comes to pull or push.
Now thanks to “e-plumb”, everything is flush.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

No Need to Weep

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No Need to Weep

As clouds descend on sounds of nightbirds' cries,
The weight of sorrow falls and comes to rest.
Thick blankets billow, blotting out the stars
And smother dreams in darkness’s disguise.
An aching heart still flutters in its breast,
So weak, yet holding promises to keep.
It quivers, finding places without scars,
For strength to see the gift in burdened skies.
Faint music sifts between the layers depressed,
A wafting serenade sent from afar,
Now straining through the clouds to one who sleeps.
Melodious awakening, Clair de Lune.
In shadows of the dark, no need to weep.
Above night’s eiderdown, there shines the moon.

GC ©2008

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Heaven Sent

I have written poems, it seems forever, usually for fun, about experiences shared with family and friends. I still enjoy writing and sharing this type of poetry. About three or four years ago, I began taking an interest in particular forms and styles of poetry, and began writing somewhat "seriously". Computer programs and digital photography have enhanced the enjoyment of my creative pursuits.

When I think of my poetry, I remember an incident that happened shortly after my mother died. Something fell off a shelf and when I picked it up, I read, "Heaven Sent". It was a bottle of perfume belonging to my mother. Time seemed to stop for a moment.

This is what is written on the box that I have kept:

A fragrance full of rain-washed breezes,
Of poems waiting to be written;
Fresh as laughter, free as flight --
A scent so full of gentleness and dreams,
it says what you have no words for.

I have always loved the message that "Heaven Sent".

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Forest Fellow

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It is Time

A poem of mine:


Beneath soft coverlet of white

and underneath our filth and grime,

another world lost from our sight

will spring again when it is time.

Despite our careless wanton ways,

we, too, are part of life’s design,

although it seems we never learn

that all are one and intertwine.

If we could heed a simple truth

of cycles turning by degree,

perhaps we’d linger in our youth,

as wisdom teaches: just to be.