Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafeawe

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


BS: Sunshine Thoughts

Megan L 30 Oct 12 - 05:47 AM
Henry Krinkle 30 Oct 12 - 06:04 AM
Megan L 31 Oct 12 - 04:19 AM
Henry Krinkle 31 Oct 12 - 04:30 AM
Sandra in Sydney 31 Oct 12 - 04:58 AM
maeve 31 Oct 12 - 08:42 AM
katlaughing 31 Oct 12 - 10:29 AM
Megan L 01 Nov 12 - 07:31 AM
Bobert 01 Nov 12 - 08:06 AM
Steve Shaw 01 Nov 12 - 09:07 AM
SINSULL 01 Nov 12 - 10:42 AM
katlaughing 01 Nov 12 - 10:49 AM
katlaughing 01 Nov 12 - 02:57 PM
Megan L 01 Nov 12 - 03:23 PM
gnu 01 Nov 12 - 03:50 PM
Megan L 02 Nov 12 - 04:32 AM
Megan L 04 Nov 12 - 04:34 AM
Megan L 10 Nov 12 - 11:36 AM
katlaughing 10 Nov 12 - 02:27 PM
gnu 10 Nov 12 - 07:33 PM
gnu 11 Nov 12 - 06:30 PM
Megan L 17 Nov 12 - 04:21 AM
maeve 17 Nov 12 - 06:31 AM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 17 Nov 12 - 07:10 AM
gnu 17 Nov 12 - 01:55 PM
katlaughing 18 Nov 12 - 12:39 PM
Megan L 18 Nov 12 - 04:42 PM
Megan L 21 Nov 12 - 06:00 PM
Megan L 26 Nov 12 - 06:49 AM
maeve 17 Dec 12 - 11:28 AM
Megan L 18 Dec 12 - 12:52 PM
olddude 18 Dec 12 - 02:34 PM
Sandra in Sydney 18 Dec 12 - 07:04 PM
Megan L 19 Dec 12 - 05:25 AM
Megan L 23 Apr 13 - 03:32 PM
olddude 23 Apr 13 - 04:28 PM
ranger1 23 Apr 13 - 08:00 PM
Ebbie 24 Apr 13 - 12:41 AM
gnu 24 Apr 13 - 04:50 AM
GUEST 26 Apr 13 - 04:59 AM
Megan L 26 Apr 13 - 05:05 AM
gnu 26 Apr 13 - 05:19 AM
Dave the Gnome 26 Apr 13 - 05:56 AM
GUEST 26 Apr 13 - 11:12 AM
Ebbie 26 Apr 13 - 11:28 AM
Megan L 26 Apr 13 - 11:36 AM
Megan L 28 Apr 13 - 03:19 AM
ranger1 28 Apr 13 - 06:49 AM
Ebbie 28 Apr 13 - 12:47 PM
gnu 28 Apr 13 - 12:55 PM
ranger1 29 Apr 13 - 06:12 AM
Megan L 29 Apr 13 - 09:42 AM
Megan L 29 Apr 13 - 10:18 AM
katlaughing 29 Apr 13 - 11:32 PM
ranger1 29 Apr 13 - 11:40 PM
Megan L 02 May 13 - 12:39 PM
Ebbie 02 May 13 - 04:39 PM
ranger1 02 May 13 - 06:59 PM
Megan L 03 May 13 - 05:16 AM
ranger1 03 May 13 - 07:04 AM
Ebbie 03 May 13 - 03:24 PM
ranger1 04 May 13 - 06:30 AM
Ebbie 04 May 13 - 11:23 AM
Megan L 04 May 13 - 12:50 PM
Megan L 06 May 13 - 03:19 AM
jacqui.c 07 May 13 - 02:54 PM
kendall 07 May 13 - 03:07 PM
Ebbie 07 May 13 - 04:21 PM
gnu 07 May 13 - 05:15 PM
ranger1 08 May 13 - 08:13 AM
kendall 08 May 13 - 07:43 PM
ranger1 08 May 13 - 10:48 PM
kendall 09 May 13 - 08:01 AM
Megan L 12 May 13 - 06:12 AM
kendall 12 May 13 - 07:15 AM
ranger1 14 May 13 - 02:36 PM
Megan L 15 May 13 - 03:11 AM
ranger1 15 May 13 - 06:40 AM
Megan L 15 May 13 - 06:49 AM
ranger1 29 May 13 - 07:19 AM
Megan L 29 May 13 - 08:21 AM
kendall 29 May 13 - 08:26 AM
ranger1 29 May 13 - 10:48 AM
gnu 29 May 13 - 02:24 PM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 29 May 13 - 03:01 PM
Charmion 30 May 13 - 11:18 AM
Megan L 31 May 13 - 01:27 PM
LilyFestre 31 May 13 - 04:01 PM
Megan L 22 Jun 13 - 04:00 PM
ranger1 03 Aug 13 - 02:40 PM
Megan L 03 Aug 13 - 03:35 PM
Ebbie 03 Aug 13 - 04:22 PM
JennieG 03 Aug 13 - 06:45 PM
Megan L 12 Aug 13 - 05:15 AM
ranger1 12 Aug 13 - 09:46 AM
Megan L 12 Aug 13 - 09:55 AM
ranger1 12 Aug 13 - 10:18 AM
Ebbie 12 Aug 13 - 12:05 PM
ranger1 12 Aug 13 - 09:48 PM
Ebbie 12 Aug 13 - 10:31 PM
Ebbie 13 Aug 13 - 02:33 AM
Megan L 14 Aug 13 - 03:41 PM
ranger1 01 Sep 13 - 09:17 PM
JennieG 02 Sep 13 - 01:56 AM
Megan L 02 Sep 13 - 02:17 AM
Megan L 18 Sep 13 - 02:08 AM
Ebbie 18 Sep 13 - 03:24 AM
Megan L 19 Sep 13 - 08:28 AM
Megan L 11 Oct 13 - 03:55 AM
ranger1 29 Oct 13 - 08:38 AM
Megan L 29 Oct 13 - 02:11 PM
Megan L 24 Nov 13 - 03:08 PM
JennieG 24 Nov 13 - 04:46 PM
Megan L 25 Nov 13 - 04:11 AM
JennieG 25 Nov 13 - 04:24 AM
maeve 06 Apr 14 - 08:04 AM
Megan L 06 Apr 14 - 09:24 AM
Megan L 21 Apr 14 - 07:32 AM
maeve 21 Apr 14 - 09:12 AM
GUEST,pete from seven stars link 21 Apr 14 - 12:40 PM
Megan L 21 Apr 14 - 01:10 PM
ranger1 21 Apr 14 - 06:13 PM
Megan L 22 Apr 14 - 01:58 AM
ranger1 22 Apr 14 - 12:25 PM
Megan L 22 Apr 14 - 12:41 PM
ranger1 22 Apr 14 - 01:17 PM
GUEST 22 Apr 14 - 01:26 PM
ranger1 22 Apr 14 - 01:54 PM
ranger1 05 May 14 - 10:14 AM
Megan L 05 May 14 - 11:09 AM
maeve 07 May 14 - 08:22 AM
Megan L 07 May 14 - 02:41 PM
Megan L 17 May 14 - 06:39 PM
Megan L 28 May 14 - 01:50 PM
Megan L 01 Jun 14 - 10:44 AM
GUEST,Pete from seven stars link 01 Jun 14 - 06:42 PM
Andrez 02 Jun 14 - 09:27 AM
Megan L 03 Jun 14 - 10:55 AM
Andrez 04 Jun 14 - 06:28 AM
Megan L 05 Jun 14 - 02:59 AM
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:









Subject: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 30 Oct 12 - 05:47 AM

With the dark days of winter coming upon us and world and weather behaving badly it is easy to get down in the dumps.

Lets look for little bits and bobs to make the day a wee bit brighter.



Winter is cold.        

That's why sheep have wool throw on a jumper. Grab a warm coat a scarf and mittens and head out for a walk to see all the beautiful skeleton leaves and smell the crisp clean air.


Winter is wet.        

That's why children splash in puddles put on your wellingtons go outside and look for puddles. So what if you get wet that's what towels were invented for. Jump in a puddle look at the water dashing away from you. Or re enact the scene from singing in the rain, so what if they think you are mad are they smiling? I bet you are

Winter is dark.        

That's why we have hearths build up the fire         find a warm fluffy blanket a good book and a steaming mug of hot chocolate and enjoy some snuggle time.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Henry Krinkle
Date: 30 Oct 12 - 06:04 AM

I like going to the shore and looking at the water and sky. The windier the better. Any time of day is good. Sunrise and sunset best. Moonlight.
=(:-( ))


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 31 Oct 12 - 04:19 AM

A thought that will make many shudder but something I am looking forward to is Christmas. Today the twins (2year olds)my unofficial grandbairns will be making christmas tree picture holders for their official grannies.

I always come home exhausted after messy time , storytime and picnic time where there mum and I have to down umpteen cups of mythical tea accompanied by strange concotions of any plastic food found in their play kitchen.

it is a joy to watch them stick and paint, to have one of them snuggle in wanting a story or just to have my name suddenly drift over the back of the couch in a small singsong voice followed by giggles.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Henry Krinkle
Date: 31 Oct 12 - 04:30 AM

You're so lucky. And blessed.
=(:-( ))


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 31 Oct 12 - 04:58 AM

you & they are building beautiful memories.

sandra


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: maeve
Date: 31 Oct 12 - 08:42 AM

Thanks, Meg.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: katlaughing
Date: 31 Oct 12 - 10:29 AM

Beautiful, Meg, thank you so much. I do see smiles this morning...saw Morgan for the first time in two weeks!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 07:31 AM

awww well done Kat I know you would have enjoyed your time with him.

How do parents do it i am an exhausted wreck? ok a happy one but a wreck :)

It had been their mother and toddlers Halloween party in the morning so we thought we would probably not get them to make anything OH BOY were we wrong. Mum had painted tongue depressors and glued them together in triangles to make Christmas trees, which the twins would decorate. The idea is to put a photograph of them behind and give them to grannies and grandpas. We ran out of trees before they ran out of energy.

Quick rethink as to what else could we do drawing round squirmy hands kept them happy for a few minutes as did the most rudimentary cat mask ever seen accompanied by tales of Cookie Cat. Then I had to make paper snowflakes. Having run out of ideas and energy for the moment we went through to the lounge and let them serve us our picnic but by this time tiredness was raising its head and we had a brief squall of squeals hits and tears.

That was till I started singing, now I am not sure if their silence was a tribute to or a comment on my singing but it worked till I seemed to get the animals and sounds all mixed up in Old Macdonald's farm. I was treated to that disgusted look only young children can conjure up when dealing with really silly grown-ups. "Mar – gar –et the duck says quack not moo" Now how could I have got that wrong? Ah well I have until next Wednesday to recover.

I had been feeling a bit dragged down by all the rain before I left home but Megan's little knowing smile as I walked in the door and Alex shy hug brought out lots of sunshine on a winters day.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Bobert
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 08:06 AM

Put another log on the fire...

B;~)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 09:07 AM

...Boil me up some bacon and some beans...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: SINSULL
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:42 AM

And what were Morgan, the twins and assorted Mudcat babies for Halloween?
Auntie SINS


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: katlaughing
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 10:49 AM

Love your stories, Meg!

Morgan was a RED ninja. He looked so good. My brother didn't recognise him when trick or treated at his house! If i can get it together today, i'll post pix somwhere.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: katlaughing
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 02:57 PM

Meg, if you don't mind, I'd like to post my blessing received on this day: I was out on the front stoop throwing the frisbee for the dogs. Next door, the rental house is empty with a flooring company in to work on the wood floors. One of the men was outside and said, "Sweetie-pie?" I looked around not sure whom he was addressing. Lo and behold! I was "sweetie-pie" and he was offering me some extra Taco Bell lunch stuff which none of them wanted. I can't eat that so thanked him. But that just made my day...a random, unforeseen, act of kindness.

Thank you, Meg, for this very special and important, imo, thread.

luvya'llkat


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 03:23 PM

Thanks lassie that made me grin. There is no need to ask with winter coming on we can all have dull days but if we each share when we have some sunshine we can get each other through till spring.

At least you didnt run of with him like someone around here did in a shop in Wales on her honeymoon. Honestly I thought the man I sidled up to put my arm through his "Darling could you buy me this thimble"

He looked down at me(Weel maist folk have to luk doon at me)
"Well I would my dear but perhaps your husband would prefer to do that"

Oh boy I was never alowed to live that one down :)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: gnu
Date: 01 Nov 12 - 03:50 PM

Lovely! Thanks.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 02 Nov 12 - 04:32 AM

Sunshine through the clouds

The sky was dark and filled with rain
So dull it looked like fog
It made me feel so down and grumpy
Till I was growling like the dog

Then shyly from a little split
Within that dense dark cloud
A bright and shiny beam appeared
The sun was still shining proud

I may not see it here below
But I know it shines above
And even on my darkest days
It sends me warmth and love

mhtbl 2nd November 2012 0830


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 04 Nov 12 - 04:34 AM

I was looking for some writing this morning I know it is in the house somewhere I remember writing it but can I find it not hide nor hair. What I did however find were two of my café books. Every so often I take one out of my bag for some reason and forget to put it back in ending up with buying another book. At least I have mostly given up writing on scraps of paper the amount of stuff that I have lost that way. I came across a piece I had written for a friend who had just gone back to studying and was so frustrated she was feeling like giving up.

The Daffodil

When things look hard
Think of the daffodil.
When days are dark
And the world is covered in snow
The bulb begins it's journey
For it has far to go.
It pushes through the darkness
Forcing up through cold hard ground
Till at last it reaches sunlight
And blossoms in full bloom.
We did not see the hard work
In all the winter's gloom
We just admire the beauty
Of a job that is well done.

21/3/2011


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 10 Nov 12 - 11:36 AM

Tonight the BBC will show the Festival of Rememberance from the Albert Hall. I remember a few years ago after all the groups walked the length of the hall to their places behind the band two old men marched down together. They were if i remember rightly the last two remaining soldiers from some battle. There they were marching as comrades the last of their kind with a shared memory. They helped each other up the steps one from either side of the battle.

It made me think that whether the battle is lost or won and when all the fighting is said and done we can move on we can work together to be better than we were.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: katlaughing
Date: 10 Nov 12 - 02:27 PM

beautiful, Megan, the latter and the daffodil...like you and all yr writings...beautiful


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: gnu
Date: 10 Nov 12 - 07:33 PM

"It made me think that whether the battle is lost or won and when all the fighting is said and done we can move on we can work together to be better than we were."

Indeed, kat, beautiful.

Megan... beautiful... you have a gift, lass. Thanks for sharing it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: gnu
Date: 11 Nov 12 - 06:30 PM

A gift that bears refreshing.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 17 Nov 12 - 04:21 AM

Winter dawn

We are at that lovely stage of an Orkney winter, the mornings are cold and crisp but not dangerous. The sky hangs over us like a military parade marching of over the horizon grading from black inky darkness through lightening shades of grey to the palest blue uniform of daylight then drifting back to the fiery colours of dawn sunlight.

They march slowly past the corner of the house across the road the light dripping from them to colour the world around me till the king himself processes past the roof line blinding me with his glorious low slung frosty whiteness.

I turn away from the brightness but let it fall on my back bathing me in comforting warmth to begin my day.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: maeve
Date: 17 Nov 12 - 06:31 AM

Thanks, Meg; lovely image.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 17 Nov 12 - 07:10 AM

Megan, I do enjoy reading your thoughts. I particularly appreciate you pointing out the beauty to be found at this time of year, when I tend to get gloomy at the ending of the green time. Thanks for reminding me to look at the sky.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: gnu
Date: 17 Nov 12 - 01:55 PM

Thanks once again, Megan. Ihe imagery in your words is stunning. Pure poetry.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: katlaughing
Date: 18 Nov 12 - 12:39 PM

More, more, lass!;-)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 18 Nov 12 - 04:42 PM

*takes a bow "Thank you thank you"
*tries to stand up "Damb has someone got Heddles crane on speed dial"

Now come on folks I canny be the only twit wie a tale fighting the winter blues.


Its all about the weather

"Whit awfy weather the day ahm fair drookit."
"Aye hids a driech day right enough, and wur haen a full sail breeze."

Such is a common greeting from customers to the café in Stromness. I discovered many years ago that life on the island revolved around the weather.

In fact I discovered that before my foot ever touched Orkney soil. It was my first ever holiday on my own, ok I know that compared with Benidorm or even Blackpool a fairly isolated Scottish island probably would not seem like the great adventure for an eighteen year old. However for me it was the ideal choice since I had never really been into discos and drinking. Ever since I had watched a schools television programme about Skara Brae the village which had been buried in the sand had captured my imagination.

It was however to be late 1979 before I was to first meet Orkney Weather. I had dressed with care and as was my fashion at the time wore a hat with a short veil. As I stepped onto the platform just outside the door of the aeroplane before descending to the tarmac (Well you never know when you might catch the eye of a young gentleman) the famous Orkney wind took a great liking for my hat. It plucked it from my head twirling it up out of reach before dancing it tantalisingly close before me as I tottered down the steps. Once it birled around me like some demented highland dancer with me at the centre of its wild sword dance it decided to take its new prize and go visiting. And so alas my lovely hat was last seen making a mad dash over the water to Shapinsay.

I often wondered if it stopped of to visit Balfour Castle before working its way up the islands to land on top of one of the sheep living outside the sea wall on North Ronaldsay. I have never made it to that island, perhaps it is for the best after all I would hate to have to debunk some local legend of the strange Were sheep who constantly wandered round the sea wall looking for entry to the human part of the island.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 21 Nov 12 - 06:00 PM

Sometimes doing what you don't want to do turns out good.

It has been a rough few days. The weather has been driving wind and rain and I wasn't feeling so good. Doreen sent a text reminding me that tonight was craft club and asking if I was going.

All day I hummed and hawed trying to find excuses not to go. Eventually as the day was lengthening I decided that if I were going I would have to go into Kirkwall to collect some money and get enough petrol to last me for a while.

5% Celsius as I stepped out the door and although the wind had dropped it was just strong enough to give the chill a bite. The sun had graced us today and was sinking in its low winter orbit as I drove. Thankfully it was at my back casting its long shadows over the land. Light in Orkney at this time of year has a brittle crispness bringing things into sharp focus.

One of the fence posts ahead of me had a brown lump on it and suspecting what it might be I checked the road then slowed as I got near it. Sure enough sitting atop the post was a Catty Face. (The local name for the short-eared owl) It made no attempt to move just swivelling its cute face with perpetually startled looking eyes to watch as I slowly passed.

A mile or so farther on I saw a flash of colour ahead and since the road was still quiet I once again slowed. A grin twitched across my face as I watched the cock pheasant daintily strutting along the top of the dry stane dyke for all the world like a miniature Beau Brummel that impressive London dandy.

I did my chores and returned home settling in the warmth and resenting the thought of having to go out again but I had promised so I gathered a few bits and headed of. What an amazing night it turned out to be an older lady who I have only nodded to in the past came in late and sat beside me. She looked at the dishmop, wooden spoon, duster, washcloth and j-cloth I was working on and exclaimed, "you are making a sally kitchen maid"

I showed her the one I had made for my mum one Christmas almost 20 years ago now at a time when David was unemployed and we couldn't afford to buy presents. I had added a halo made from a gold coloured pot scrubber and a tiny hand written book of readings and hymns for Christmas as though it was a choirboy.

Our conversation wandered from Carols from Kings a family Christmas tradition that mum and I would stop whatever we were doing and listen to it when we had radio and watch when we eventually got television. I am not quite sure how we reached there but I listened fascinated as she told be about being evacuated from London during 1939 and returning in 1941 begging their parents not to send them away again even through the blitz. What an interesting and fascinating day it has turned out to be just because I made myself do what I did not want to do.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 26 Nov 12 - 06:49 AM

Smoky water days

Orkney is lazy today even the sun is to lazy to put on its bright gown choosing to amble across the sky in its startlingly white petticoat. The smoke from the chimney oh a house down on the main road cannot be bothered whizzing of as it usually does instead it wanders slowly around as though trying to pick a direction on which to set off.

The big Sycamore is perplexed it is not sure about this standing still it feels most strange to branches used to being almost continuously being ordered about by sergeant major wind. Even the slender pikes of montbretia leaves are trying to work out why their world has stopped moving.

While down in the bay sluggish turns around like the matriarch seal reluctant to leave the comfort of the shore. It drags itself away so slowly you can still see reflections on its surface. It tenderly runs a finger of wave along the side of the departing ferry in a lover's caress.

And down the Flow towards Flotta a light fog hangs low to the water, indeed it is unfair to call it a fog for it is the merest wisp the faintest show of smoky water brushing up against Hoy's dark cliffs.

Even the birds are to lethargic to take wing they sit on the gutter of the house whispering secrets not at all their usual boisterous squabbling selves.

It is a day for drifting thoughts and quiet reflections


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: maeve
Date: 17 Dec 12 - 11:28 AM

These are times when we need good news, joyful thoughts, and gratitude.

Thank you, Megan.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 18 Dec 12 - 12:52 PM

What makes you smile?

Last week we took the twins out to a cafe in town, mum was very anxious apart from one visit to my local cafe when they were babies they have never been in such a social setting.

While mum was at the atm I held two tiny hands and moved to the big window of the shoe shop next door. "Santa" Alex pointed. Not to be outdone Megan found a snowman there were lots of small figures dotted around the display. their eyes gleamed and they laughed in delight at each new treasure found much to the enjoyment of folk passing in the street.

I had chosen the cafe carefully for this first forray it has enclosed booths so one twin to each side of the table and an adult wedge should it be necessary. It wasn't I swear Alex was practicing 2 year old flirting with the waitress and his sister was batting her blonde eyelashes and flashing award winning smiles at anyone who came near.

O course never having had children I had not taken things like sippy cups into account but we discovered it is still possible to have your coffee while firmly clamping a small glass onto the table and use a finger to direct a straw at a small mouth. They captivated everyone who came near and we got out without tears tantrums or lots of crumbs all in all a good outing.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: olddude
Date: 18 Dec 12 - 02:34 PM

Well I found out yesterday the new grand baby on the way is a girl, so now I will have a grandson and granddaughter ... I get to spoil rotten for sure. Its my job


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 18 Dec 12 - 07:04 PM

lucky 'Catters

Fridays for the last few years I've been teaching at a craft group comprised of young mothers. Toddlers go into the creche, babies stay in the craft room & we all have fun. I've never spent so much time with children before & I love it. I also take lots of pics.

One morning Miss Three decided to throw a tantrum & not stay in the creche with her friends, so she joined us & made a necklace. She is a very shy child & doesn't speak to me even tho she has known me most of her life, but pointed to the colour of felt she wanted & I cut a snippet which she threaded on a needle.

We're now on our summer break & I won't see them for weeks, tho some of us are meeting after christmas.

sandra


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 19 Dec 12 - 05:25 AM

Well done Sandra sounds like a good time is had by all and everyone benefits.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 23 Apr 13 - 03:32 PM

This evening I am watching the dragons play tig in the Cairston roads just as the ancestors have since the ancient ones built their low stone walled houses with roofs of turf and heather. Of course they knew that Our dragon was a small creature who couldn't be seen as it swam between the islands but they followed its large snowy wake.

Now as a twenty-first century woman there is a part of my brain knows that the dashing white wakes are the result of our strange wind and tide. There is however another part remembers Dauvit's great joy as he watched his dragon dashing along the base of the steep dark cliffs of Hoy.

A brave Viking caught sight of our dragon and carved his picture on the wall of the ancient tomb of Maes Howe while he sheltered there with his crew during a fearsome storm. There he is immortalised till this day his spiked tail curled protectively round his body.

He dashes round the shore of Graemsay as the farmers would say "Clean gyte wie the freedom" like a young cow let out of the barn to the sweet fresh grass of spring before scampering across to Hoy playing hide and seek along its craggy base.

Sometimes in life we may know the sensible scientific answers to the beliefs of our ancestors yet if we do not sometimes lay aside what we know and look with the innocent wonder of a child or our ancestors then we will lose the joy of this wonderful world


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: olddude
Date: 23 Apr 13 - 04:28 PM

cannot wait, any day now a new baby girl granddaughter ... Oh yes .. I have a lot of experience since I raised girls ,... lots of barbies here


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 23 Apr 13 - 08:00 PM

I've been sharing folk music with my younger friends in the video gaming community I belong to, by blogging about it and using YouTube videos. They look forward to each new one, and some are listening to music they never would have encountered before. I'm really enjoying it, and learning a lot myself. Thanks go out to Bat Goddess and Curmudgeon, John MacKenzie, and Deckman for all the help they've provided for my "little" project.

Dan, congrats on that soon-to-be little ray of sunshine!

Megan, I love the imagery of the dragon!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Ebbie
Date: 24 Apr 13 - 12:41 AM

Last Sunday was the first day of our planned 'music days' here at the senior center. Only three tenants besides myself came but three friends, including myself, kept the music going. We had a fiddle, a guitar and an autoharp plus voices and had a grand time.

We will get more tenants involved- it just takes time.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: gnu
Date: 24 Apr 13 - 04:50 AM

Megan... thanks.

r1, Ebbie.. cool!

Dan... congrats ya luck bugger!!! Enjoy!

Nice way to start the day on a windy, rainy, dark morn... with such wonderful Sunshine Thoughts. Thanks.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: GUEST
Date: 26 Apr 13 - 04:59 AM

Dan congratulations hope everybody doing well.
Ranger 1 well done we can all do with broadening our horizons and if you have never been introduced to something you will never know if you like it.
Ebbie keep going we need all the pleasant mental stimulation we can get as we get older otherwise like a poster that used to be up in our local library "Use it or lose it"

I Remember

I remember a warm summer's morning, sparkling dew strung on gossamer threads across the garden. I stood at the back door in my cotton nightie sleep splashed eyes blinking in the sun. Warmth enfolded me a safe place and a warm embrace. Two strong arms came over my shoulders and the safe place became a wonderful unassailable fortress against the cares of childhood.

Her voice flowed to me a gentle stream of sound guiding on an adventure of exploration of our new magical morning. She whistled and we laughed at the sleepy response from a nearby blackbird, as we listened his song awoke his neighbours each adding their whistle chirrup or caw till the sound of morning swelled around us in the great symphonic rise of dawn.

Still holding me we stepped out of the door as she whispered how special this morning was, how it would stay with me on dark days my summer place where we could always talk together no matter how far apart we were.

The hard gravel path nibbled at our bare feet like the small mouse dad had caught eyeing up his raspberries. Then cool soft grass washed away the grit I broke free and danced around the lawn leaving small damp footprints among the crystal sprinkled emerald grass.

Many years later my dance would take me hundreds of miles away from this place and time. Mum would finish her dance in this garden and move on to dance on the wind of my memory. Yet still when the grass glitters with the dawn and the sleepy birds begin to waken we can once more share time in our magical place. When I go there I know I will hear her voice and bask in the warmth of her love and wise advice once more.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 26 Apr 13 - 05:05 AM

OOPs guest was me didnt realise I wasnt aw there


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: gnu
Date: 26 Apr 13 - 05:19 AM

Megan... beautiful... as always. Thanks for sharing.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 26 Apr 13 - 05:56 AM

The setting sun gave the hills to the south of Skipton the sepia tones of an old photograph yesterday evening. Over to one side the earlier rain had washed the sky to the kind of pink that seems to exist only in memories. It was only a moment, but that moment lasted an age and elevated the mundane weekly shop into a train of thoughts that spanned creation. I stopped the car in the middle of the car park while other shoppers wended their way home, seemingly oblivious to the miracle we were witnessing.

A young man wearing a 'hoodie' walked past us, leading a horse while talking on a mobile phone. It did not seem strange or out of place at all but as he passed he looked directly at us and smiled. He was outside, in the fresh air even if was on an urban car park! I felt he knew why we were sat there grinning. Maybe, when I no longer need it, I could trade the car for a horse. We can all hope...

Cheers

DtG


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: GUEST
Date: 26 Apr 13 - 11:12 AM

The smallest of things can remain in the memory as a smile maker.

I happened to be at the window one day as a tall young man came striding up the steep street. He went on a few yards, stopped, looked around and came back around the retaining wall, bent over, plucked a single leaf of the spearmint plants I had planted there and continued striding up the hill, the sprig held to his nose.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Ebbie
Date: 26 Apr 13 - 11:28 AM

Ha! How'd I get to be a Guest? That last post was I.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 26 Apr 13 - 11:36 AM

he he sorry Ebbie forgot to warn folk I was contageous


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 28 Apr 13 - 03:19 AM

Letting go the past

When we moved from a bigger house to the one I am in now (Which was a great improvement in so many ways) Dauvit would take box after box of stuff out to the disused byre and sort through it putting load after load to the mart. In the new house we still had way to much stuff but we were going to sort through the boxes as we could. Unfortunately Dauvit's health failed rapidly after we moved and those boxes never did get sorted in fact as older family members left us they grew.

In 2009 I spent most of the year living out of a suitcase bouncing back and forth the 308 miles between our home and the hospital Dauvit was in, in Glasgow. Eventually we got word he would probably be coming home and I raced back to get things ready. I stood in the house and cried I couldn't even figure out where to start there were things everywhere. A woman from our church offered to tidy up for me and I bounced of again to make more arrangements. I returned three days later to discover that everything had been moved and anything she thought had no use or I wouldn't need had been taken to a charity shop. From then until Dauvit's death I would continuously find myself looking for things and not finding them.

Now it is 2013 I have great difficulty bending, lifting or kneeling down so gradually the house has turned into a complete mess but the events of 2009 have left their damage and I feared to let anyone in, in case I lost anything else. I have visitors coming at the end of May and was in a complete panic I had had several ideas of people who could be paid to get the place ready for me but my fears were stopping me from contacting them.

Enter Christine, I have written before about the girl from a local café who adopted me after Dauvit died. She finally said to me the other day "I have never been allowed in your house we need to get this sorted" finally we agreed that I would pick her up on Saturday since she works all week and she would make a start on the clear up.

Saturday morning dawned (And yes I saw the dawn) with me pacing the floor feeling physically sick about what would be happening that day, would we be able to do this and still feel friends. I picked her up at eleven so she could get a long lie then headed back to start work.

What a day it turned out to be, quite amazing. Three bags at a time, one for rubbish, one for the charity shop and one for craft stuff she worked away nothing went in the bin bag or the charity shop bag without her checking it with me. There were a few tears as we came across things that I thought had gone, things that would not have meant anything to an outsider like the cake stand that had belonged to Mum and a sandwich plate of my Grans.   There were some tough decisions to make, as well it is strange the things you can get sentimental over but did I really need to keep all of Dauvit's tools. The answer to that question was of course NO but what helped me make it was Christine's constant reassurance that nothing would go if I wanted it no matter what it seemed to her.

A tough day, and more to come but all in all it has been a good day and when we are done there will be less to clutter my small house and her gentle understanding is wiping away the fear of someone being in my space.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 28 Apr 13 - 06:49 AM

(((Meg)))

I have spent time with a lovely not-quite-eight year-old two Saturdays in a row. She is a lot like I was at that age, everything that grows, hops, crawls, flies, swims, or runs is asked about and wondered at. Yesterday she was quizzing me about various plants growing in the woods, wanting to know what they were, even though they didn't have flowers on them. She spent the week looking forward to coming to the birding festival that we're having at the park and hoping that I'd be there. She also came with a list of questions for me that she's thought of during the week, most of which I managed to answer for her. I like this child :)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Ebbie
Date: 28 Apr 13 - 12:47 PM

{{{{{Megan L}}}}}


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: gnu
Date: 28 Apr 13 - 12:55 PM

Ditto r1 and Ebbie. I have watery eyes on more than one count.

Thanks again, M.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 29 Apr 13 - 06:12 AM

Today is a day off and I shall spend it helping friends. Tom is physically no longer capable of doing these projects, and Linn is busy taking care of Tom, so I go down every so often and help out where I can. This project is moving a woodpile from its current location to a different one, out of the way of the fellow who will be fixing the driveway next week. A lot of the wood isn't worth saving, so it has to be gone through, moved, and restacked in the new spot. It is a good way to spend a day - helping friends, enjoying their company, and there is something very satisfying about stacking wood. There's a bit of an art to it, making it stable enough so it won't fall over by cribbing the ends and stacking it so it all fits together. I am very good at stacking wood, the two rows I've made so far are solid. One can reach out and shake the pile and it barely moves. And knowing I've done this for friends makes it even more satisfying.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 29 Apr 13 - 09:42 AM


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 29 Apr 13 - 10:18 AM

Duh senior moment :)

Sounds like a job well done lass and all the better for being done among friends.

When I first came to Orkney it was not unusual to see peat stacks for we have few trees on the island. Most households had two and the industrious ones three stacks. There was the stack they were using for the hearth this year, last years cutting which would be dry by the time this years was done and this years cutting.

Several families with banks close by would all work together to gather the peats. First the grassy turf was stripped of laid carefully by to put back in place when we were done. Then the Tusker a strangely shaped spade forged by generations of blacksmiths was used to cut the labs of peat which were laid on the banks to dry. By several families working together they could do on average enough for one stack a day and would work together till each family had enough to see them through.

A while later when the peats had dried a little and could be moved folk again gathered to "bring them in". They would load them on carts which would take them down to the farm yard where they would be stacked allowing them to dry till they became rock hard providing a slow burning fuel for cooking and heating the croft.

Many of the younger generation have never smelled the slightly acidic tang of burning peats. However to those of a certain generation the smell wherever they are in the world will instantly transport them home. Never was there a more welcoming and heartening smell on damp winters evening.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: katlaughing
Date: 29 Apr 13 - 11:32 PM

I might know be quite ready to post, but am enjoying this thread, immsensely. It reminds me of some of Peter T's Thread for the day threads. Thanks so much for sharing.


luvyakat

P.S. Here's a stinky proposition Morgan call me with tonight:

   Mama, would you like to write a book with me? Do you want to hear the first few chapters?

   Why sure I would! I love that you like to create with worlds and your imagination.(WE mumbled on a bit of NANOWRIMO and others and agreed to talk later. The heo involve Mr Pill, who farts pickles ahwn he's out to save someone. I told him I'd edit, Fourth graders have such gritty humour!)


.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 29 Apr 13 - 11:40 PM

When I was in Ireland 25 years ago (where has the time gone?!), I saw peat being cut, and several of the hostels I stayed in had peat fires burning. Thanks for reminding me of a happy memory :)

Here in Maine, we have a saying that wood warms you twice - once when you cut it (or stack it), and the second time when you burn it. The house my mum grew up in was poorly built and always cold. She always vowed that someday she would live in a house and keep it as warm as she wished. When we moved to the coast of Maine when I was 15, the house we rented only had electric baseboard heaters when we first moved in. Maine has long, cold winters, and my parents were worried about being able to afford the electric bill. Our landlords liked us as tenants so much, that they installed a wood-burning furnace in the cellar for us. Mum finally got her wish. She would order four cords of wood (a cord is a stack of wood four feet wide, four feet tall, and 8 feet long, for those who don't know) in the fall, and when it was delivered, all social engagements that my sister and I might have were cancelled and we would all spend the weekend throwing the wood into the cellar and stacking it. My sister and I hated it, but we liked being warm, too, as mum would remind us when we'd start to complain. Not only that, but it taught me a useful skill.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 02 May 13 - 12:39 PM

All the talk in our small town just now is about the dearth of activity on the street. The Street is actually what was the main road of the original town. Everything lay either abune(above) or ablow (below) the street, a jumble of piers and narrow lanes clinging together for such comfort as could be garnered from the harsh granite hillside tumbling down to the bay.

Women talked at lane ends about distant shared cousins who had written letters home from the far reaches of the globe. There was mingled pride and sadness that young Doddie (George) had got work with the Hudson Bay Company. Sighs of understanding and commiseration at another young lad forced to leave the island to make a living, so many of them never came home.

Men gathered at the pierhead moaning at the price of kye (cattle) at the mart which lay at the far end of town,when you are walking your beasts to mart or slaughter house you want them in your own parish true food miles. On wild weather days they would gather to decide if they should leave the safety of the harbour and risk the rough seas out the back of Hoy with their long lines.

Slowly (for all things are slow in a land ruled by the ebb and flow of the tide) the conversation would meander from topic to topic, for reading and making babies were activities for the long winters nights.

It was a self sufficient little town back then with the ships gliding past the Kirk Rocks with their great creamy sails bringing in the luxury goods the island could not provide. The cobbler, the baker and all the services our town needed provided in tiny one roomed shops and more ale house per yard of street than anywhere else on the island. Children darting along the road weaving between the adults a precious coin grasped in a hot little hand to buy a loaf or jug of ale for father coming home prayed there would be enough left to buy a wee poke (Small paper cone) of toffee as a rare treat.

Much of life was lived on the street news passed tumbling from lip to lip along its length. The anxious waiting women when a local boat was overdue whispering together afraid to say the frightened words loudly in case they would come true. Sharing tears of joy when the men were spied slipping into the Cairston Roads the small boats fighting their way round the holms towards the safety of harbour. The cannon announced a ships arrival from south with apples from Kent and oranges from Spain, bolts of cloth for plain
folk and fine silk for the Laird

Dressed in their Sunday best families walked along the street laughing to a wedding. Sombre faced silent black clothed they walked in procession behind the coffin out to Warbeth where the late of the town laid asleep to the susserus shushing of waves on the shore, slumbering till the great call to judgement.

Then came the time when the old ways were no longer good enough. The days of the oil and prosperity when the council in their dubious wisdom built scheme after scheme of new houses on the outskirts of town. The people bought cars and went to work and shop in Kirkwall. The people outgrew our little town and gradually most of the shops closed to be replace with gift shops for the cruise ships.

Many factors contribute to the death of a small community but in a seafaring town bedded down on its granite hillside the temporary loss of our ferry has pierced the heart of the towns confidence in the future flowing away like our lifeblood into the harbour.

The feeling of impending doom in the conversations is hard to get past. Writing this however I think of all the changes good and bad that have happened in our small town over the centuries and realise that through it all the town has remained as strong and solid as its granite foundation.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Ebbie
Date: 02 May 13 - 04:39 PM

"...susserus shushing of waves ..." I love susseration.

Once, on a camping trip, we stood there in the darkness that had gathered around us while leaving the sky still lit enough to show the silhouettes of flock of ducks coming in to land on the lake for the night. The only sound overhead, except for the very occasional solitary honk was the suss suss suss of their wings.

Question: Is peat merely below-ground vegetation that has decayed? Would the permafrost of the north be burnable if it were cut into cakes and dried?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 02 May 13 - 06:59 PM

Ebbie, this is a pretty good definition of peat.

Megan, you really should be writing books and sharing the beauty of your writing with the world.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 03 May 13 - 05:16 AM

Ebbie your wonderful description of the ducks made me think of sound.

Orkney sounds

We think of our island home as a quiet place especially when you get out of the town. Today however a chance remark set my mind a wandering through the sometimes forgotten paths of memory appreciating once more the great beauty of my island as seen through the eyes of a blind man.

The old dry-stone walled cottage we called home for the first nineteen years of married life sat solid and low in the landscape as though afraid to stick its head to far above the garden walls for fear the wind would try and pluck it from its place.

We lay side by side in the small bedroom not yet asleep, for sleep was not easily won on nights of thick fog. The booming bass notes of the lighthouse carrying across the Flow till it vibrated in your chest. The pauses punctuated by the shrill building warble of the Whaup (that being the Orkney name for the Curlew) it always felt as though it was having to practice peep, then a break then peep peep till it finally spiralled upwards in a lonesome eerie warble. it was a strangely unnerving sound on such a night like the cry of a lost soul of a sailor rising in desperation to be plucked from the sea. For many years we seemed to attract a lone Whaup who kept up a war of attrition with Dauvit who seemed to find its mournful matting call a personal affront. Curlew song on you tube

The wind had its own song as it whistled through the slack old slates sometimes though it would stop singing and scream at us as it tried to batter down the chimney that had stood for well over 200 years. On those nights it was not hard to imagine our old house hunkering down even lower to the ground to escape its onslaught.

Happier sounds there were too, the wild geese calling their invitation to join them as they migrated south for a warmer winter ah so tempting was their call. The blackbird having a whistle argument with Dauvit over who really owned the land, like a wonderfully scored duet. Or the starling who caused great confusion in the breast of Cookie our small black cat with white socks and moustache that looked like she had been caught stealing the cream. You see I had never had a cat before and used to whistle her home like we had the dogs when I was young. The only problem was this wily Starling had learned to imitate my whistle so one day I found myself in the courtyard with Cookie sitting on the ridge of the low roof.   I whistled and she began to turn to come down the roof to me when I apparently whistled her from the back garden. Her head twisted and turned in growing confusion at my ability to be two places at one time I had never thought to see a cat poots(pout petulantly) but she certainly did as I burst out laughing. Indeed she was so unamused she refused to come near me for the rest of the day.

The other sound that sits strong in my memory of that time was of standing at the corner of the house on a warm summer evening and hearing a baby cry. I called Dauvit out for I knew none of the houses in the area had young children and the crying sounded quite distressed. He smiled taking my hand as he led me down the road till we reached the auld brig, there he guided me down the path to the beach. He turned me to look into the curve of the bay standing behind me with his strong arms enfolding me in his warmth as we watched the common seals and their pups sprinkled like living rocks across the bay.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 03 May 13 - 07:04 AM

Megan, your writing makes me want to visit Orkney.

In New England, with our long (although not as long as Alaska's!) winters, the call of the spring peepers is one of the most welcomed sounds. Peepers are small frogs, about an inch or so long, and when they get together in a pond, the sound can be overwhelming for those who don't enjoy it for what it is: the sound of spring. Peepers in the pond down the road


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Ebbie
Date: 03 May 13 - 03:24 PM

Megan, your account of the distressed cry reminds me of something- I've never even told anyone of it - that I once experienced.

I had recently bought a couple of acres in the country just over the hill from where my brother lived with his family. He had a few sheep and they grazed in the meadow bordering the stream. It was a peaceful spot, always reminding me of the psalm.

Anyway. One day I was outdoors when I heard a repeated cry for help. It was coming from my brother's direction and I sprinted up the trail, my heart in my mouth.

Help! Help! The sound got louder the closer I got. I crested the hill and listened for the direction of the call.

And again, the sheep sounded: Help! Help!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 04 May 13 - 06:30 AM

Sunday mornings have always been my time with Dad. He was an early riser from having to get up at 4:00 AM in order to be at whatever job site he was on at that time. When you work bridge construction, you kind of have to go to where the bridge is, and most crews start by 7:00 AM. He was never able to turn off that internal alarm clock, so he'd still be up early on the weekends. On the occasions that I'd be living in the same town, I'd go over for coffee, and we'd sit and talk. Sometimes, I'd stay with him at the place out on Goose Pond, and we'd sit in the kitchen and listen to the quiet quickly being replaced by birdsong. If we were really lucky and the wind was either still or blowing from the east, we might hear the loons calling to one another.

My dad wasn't a big guy. Maybe five eight in his workboots. I don't know what he weighed, but whatever it was, it wasn't much and would have been all muscle. Wiry, is what I heard one of the cousins call him, Billy is a wiry little son of gun. He was Billy to the family, and Moe to everyone else. Moe was short for Moses, Billy because he was Moses Jr and our last name is Bill.

He'd be sitting there at the table in his jeans and a pocket tee-shirt, his Quebecois ancestry obvious in his wiry build. His face, arms, and neck were all weathered dark by sun and wind from working outdoors all his life, making it easy to see our native ancestry, too. All except his feet, they never saw much sun and were almost blindingly white compared to the rest of him. Every so often, when he didn't think I was looking, he'd look over with love and pride in his dark eyes.

I miss those Sunday mornings.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Ebbie
Date: 04 May 13 - 11:23 AM

I love the image of the white feet, Tami!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 04 May 13 - 12:50 PM

Lass they sound like real special memories.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 06 May 13 - 03:19 AM

A glimpse of a sail slipping out of the bay the skipper judging the local waters to catch the oot race the rushing ebb tide that will grab him and allow him to ride it like a galloping horse all the way round the island to Birsay should he wish. From there he can catch the wind to make the dash to Shetland or work his way over to Norway as our forefathers did.

The local boat, the Orkney Yole wide beamed and shallow of draft they are clinker built and had almost died out on our islands. Thankfully an association has been formed to preserve and promote the yole and the first new built one in about a century was completed in if I remember rightly 2008.

Thought to have been brought to us by our Viking ancestors they were ideal for transporting people and goods between the islands. They are small by modern standards but could carry a considerable load because of their stability. Two of Dauvit's uncles were renowned builders not only for their own small island but also throughout the north isles it is also thought they were the last north isles builders to carry on the tradition.

Watching the sail disappear round the point of Ness I smile. Lilly the first of the new generation of Orkney Yole epitomises all that I love about my island the quiet sense of continuity. Yesterday, today and tomorrow, tilling, planting, reaping onward we move generation to generation yet our men still go to sea and our women still show their treasured possessions on the sideboard as our ancestors at Skara brae did.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: jacqui.c
Date: 07 May 13 - 02:54 PM

A sunny afternoon, a banjo, dog and cup of coffee.

What more could a man want?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: kendall
Date: 07 May 13 - 03:07 PM

A more comfortable seat


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Ebbie
Date: 07 May 13 - 04:21 PM

Nice picture. And sun. Sunshine has been in short supply in Alaska.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: gnu
Date: 07 May 13 - 05:15 PM

Kendall, yer seat must be comfy enough on accounta ya landed jac.

This thread is one of my all time favs of all Mudcat threads! The poetry in your words exacts all manners of emotions from me. Thank you, each and all.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 08 May 13 - 08:13 AM

I was late walking the dog last night. By the time we headed out the door, the mist was rolling in. There are no streetlights or sidewalks on our road, and I love that, but it does make after-dark walks a little dangerous. We just went a little ways, down the gated dirt road that leads to the town pump house. There is a beautiful little marsh down there full of spring peepers still peeping their little hearts out. I stopped to enjoy the sights and sounds. Among the cattails, I noticed a pair of red-winged blackbirds flying from cattail stalk to cattail stalk, the mail on the top of the cattail, the female staying lower. Red-winged blackbird males are handsome creatures, all black, except for a stripe of yellow visible on his shoulder, like an epaulette on a uniform. When he spreads his wings, the large red patch under the yellow becomes visible. The female is streaked brown and white, all the better to be invisible when sitting on the nest. The deer also use the gravel road, I can see their tracks. I suspect there may be a mink, fox, or other medium sized mammal using the marsh, as Bandit is always very interested in the riprap around the culvert that allows the marsh to flow under the road rather than over it when the water is high. It isn't at all high right now, and that worries me. It has been a very dry spring this year, and I hope for rain soon.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: kendall
Date: 08 May 13 - 07:43 PM

I'll send you some tonight.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 08 May 13 - 10:48 PM

Aw, thank you, Kendall!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: kendall
Date: 09 May 13 - 08:01 AM

Did it arrive yet? I don't know your zip code.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 12 May 13 - 06:12 AM

It had been a tough day, although I had reason to celebrate, the housing association are finally going to remove the slippy dangerous shower and just dish the floor turning it into a proper safe wet room. I was however surrounded by people drowning in bad news and sadness, that is their story to tell not mine.

By the time I finally closed the door at night and eased back into the recliner I was drained and feeling blue. As I sat quietly trying to push away the cares of the day a small memory timidly crept to the edge of my consciousness, it quivered with fright each time I looked at it till I had calmed enough for it to edge closer.

It was a simple little memory from oh so long ago yet as fresh as the day it was made. I was fifteen and sitting with my big brother in Abottsinch Airport waiting to board my first ever plane. We were not going that far just to a country festival in London but for me it was to be a big adventure, my first flight and my first time in a proper hotel. At that moment however it looked like a vanishing dream as heavy rain and black forbidding clouds threatened to ground our flight.

Suddenly there was an announcement there was a short gap in the weather and we would take off. We were quickly hustled aboard, the hostess gave us safety instructions, checked we were all buckled up even as we headed for the runway.

It felt like we were crawling along as the pilot took us into a long slow ascent the dark cloying cloud clinging to us like a shroud. My heart felt heavy with disappointment and anxiety, was it safe to fly through this? Would I ever catch a glimpse of the ground I had so wanted to see from this height?

Suddenly we broke though the top of the cloud and I gasped in surprise at the bright sunshine and fluffy white cotton wool landscape below us. I don't suppose I had ever really thought about it to me the sun was either there on sunny days or not on dull cloudy ones, yet here it was shining brightly while on the ground it had ceased to exist.

The memory gave me one last little butterfly kiss then wandered of to play somewhere else. I allowed the worries of tomorrow and the cares of today to sink into the cleansing river of evening. Sighing in the secure knowledge that no matter how dark the clouds got above them the sun is still shining and it will break through them someday.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: kendall
Date: 12 May 13 - 07:15 AM

There's a song in there.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 14 May 13 - 02:36 PM

It was beautiful morning at the park today. Sun shining, birds singing, and children laughing and learning. We had 60 five-year-olds come to the park this morning for nature programs. They are like popcorn at this age, all over the place, but they are so much fun to spend time with! They all want to stand close to you and tell you about every tiny detail of their lives and it's sometimes hard to get them to concentrate on what they are supposed to be doing. My thought is that if I taught them at least one new thing, then I have accomplished something. Today's nature programs focused on using their senses and it is always amazing what they notice. The red of the stems of tiny ferns that most adults never even notice, the bumpiness of the clay in the picnic field under their feet, one tiny bird call that I never would have noticed if they hadn't brought it to my attention, the smell of the grass they're treading upon. And most of all, being able to experience the park through their innocence and wonder.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 15 May 13 - 03:11 AM

A child's eye view


Look through my eyes see what I see
The whole world is fresh and new to me
The things you've stopped seeing
You no longer hear
Are bright and exciting
Wondrous and clear.
I don't over think things
I'm filled with their joy
I dance in the sunshine
All my senses employ.
The veins on a leaf
The croak of a frog
A caterpillar crawling
Sharing food with my dog.
My very first snowflake
The rough feel of a log
I look and I listen
With eyes open wide
Its fresh and its new
And I don't try to hide.

MHTBL 15th may 2013 0810hrs


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 15 May 13 - 06:40 AM

Megan, That's wonderful!

I get to do it all over again today, except that I'll be poking through tide pools with them instead of on the trail. And I get paid to do this!!!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 15 May 13 - 06:49 AM

You lucky lass.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 29 May 13 - 07:19 AM

I took a trip back "home" ten days ago. It's not the area where I spent the most time as a child, but after all the moving we did (seventeen moves in my 15 years of life at that point), it was the place that felt the most like home. I dropped in on our old landlords and had a lovely visit, and they let me wander though our old house. Standing in what was my old room, I remembered all the mornings that I awoke before the alarm clock went off and lying in bed listening. I could tell the weather from the sounds I heard. If it was foggy, I would hear the fog horn from the lighthouse and the bell buoy out in the bay, but everything else would be all muffled. If it was snowing without being a northeaster, it was all quiet. If there was a northeaster going on, I would hear the snow hissing on the windows and the wind sounding like it wanted to blow the roof off. Some mornings, I'd hear the lobstermen in Back Cove behind the house getting ready to go out for another day, gear clanking and NOAA on their radios giving the marine report. Summers, I'd be woken up earlier by the birds singing or the sound of Paul Yates' lawnmower at 5:00 AM.

I will always miss those winter mornings, though, when I would lie awake in the dark, snug and warm in my bed listening to the bell buoy or the foghorn.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 29 May 13 - 08:21 AM

Lass that is a wonderful picture you painted in my mind. My Uncle Tom was blind and loved going for walks with people who could paint the scenery with their words, he would have loved listening to you.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: kendall
Date: 29 May 13 - 08:26 AM

Maine is truly Gods country; he/she/it doesn't spend the winter here.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 29 May 13 - 10:48 AM

Kendall, winter is when the rarest beauty is to be found, because there are fewer of us to appreciate it. The deep blue of the predawn hours during a snowstorm contrasting with the white of the snow; the deep green of the pines against the blue sky; the bare branches of the hardwoods silhouetted against overcast skies; The silver reflection of the full moon on crusty snow; the thousands of bursts of color made by sun shining through ice on the trees after an ice storm. It's a starker beauty than the other seasons, but no less beautiful.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: gnu
Date: 29 May 13 - 02:24 PM

What a wonderful thread. Megan, r1... absolutely beautiful posts! Thank youse.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 29 May 13 - 03:01 PM

Beautiful, Tami!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Charmion
Date: 30 May 13 - 11:18 AM

This morning, we woke up at 4:30 a.m. to the whistling of a white-throated sparrow, the "O Canada bird", who sings the opening phrase of our national anthem to announce his presence to the world. He also has a wide range of piercing two-note calls and, now that it's getting hot and we have our windows open, he can jolt us out of a sound sleep.

At the first flutter of an eyelid, Rosie the cat is on the job to finish what the sparrow started. Whether we want it to or not, our day has begun.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 31 May 13 - 01:27 PM

Well folks I have to report that I woke to a foggy drizzly morning. I wandered over to the window and there I was faced with the most blatant and disturbing display of public sex right there on my front lawn.

There they were quite obviously at it and me a former Sunday school teacher as well. I mean what else could I do I phoned the housing association to complain giving them a very accurate description of those involved, only to be told they would do nothing, absolutely nothing.

Apparently the local bylaws do not cover amorous sparrows, how was I to know that. When he stopped laughing Brian informed they would begin work ripping out the bathroom I have had problems with and installing the new one.














OK I KNOW
which way is the cellar?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: LilyFestre
Date: 31 May 13 - 04:01 PM

I woke up to the sunshine sneaking around the edges of a quilted wall hanging that I purposefully hang on the window to keep the rising sun out of my bedroom...today that little trick didn't work.

It is about 90 degrees in northern Pennsylvania today...much to hot for me. ICK.

Michelle


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 22 Jun 13 - 04:00 PM

The sun played peekaboo through the leaves of the large old oak as we sat in its shade to eat our picnic. It was hard to believe we were only a few hundred yards from the slip road to the motorway. Two young rabbits were busy playing tig around the stump of another tree nearby while an angry raven scolded them from the safety of the next tree down the avenue.

We stood and slowly continued our walk back to the car park talking of grandparents, parents and others now gone who had given us life and shared their life with us both good and bad, the wisdom and the foolishness of the past.

We walked together, the oldest and the youngest of a fast shrinking family relishing our brief time together now that we are usually separated by several hundred miles. The time was we could do this six times a year as Dauvit and I went down for conferences four times a year and Roy would come up for two of his holidays, now ill health and lower incomes has reduced our visits considerably, this was our first in over a year.

For the past week we have enjoyed each others company and revisited places he had taken me as a wee girl. Well now it is back to old clothes and porridge as my mum would have said . However I have returned to something I had given up hope of ever experiencing the shower room I have been saying was dangerous for ten years has been replaced with a new wet room by the housing association. Ah how I love my island I dropped of the key with the association before I headed of . I would have left the door unlocked like it usually is but they don't really approve of that, they had even hoovered the carpets before they left.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 03 Aug 13 - 02:40 PM

The last several weeks have seen our young raptors discovering what their big wings are for. We have at least seven young osprey invading each others' air space and the adults birds spend a lot of time yelling at the neighbor kids. We also have a couple of red-shouldered hawks learning how to fly and their parents attempting to teach them that the squirrels and chipmunks are not entertainment but dinner. The young crows are nearly the same size as their parents, but still follow their parents and older siblings around begging to be fed. They are easily identified from the adults by their still slightly fuzzy brown heads. They look so silly, I can't help but laugh at them. Our little phoebes under the eaves of park HQ are also learning to fly, and will be on their own soon. And with the seeds forming in the thistles, the goldfinches are finally getting serious about nesting. But it's my osprey that love best :)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 03 Aug 13 - 03:35 PM

It must be wonderful to watch them lass.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Ebbie
Date: 03 Aug 13 - 04:22 PM

Speaking of young crying to be fed- yesterday in the parking lot I stood and watched a crow parent trying to appease two young'uns. Nice to know they had successfully raised TWO babies but I suspect they had doubts as to the wisdom of it. S/he pecked diligently at the ground and offered morsels to first one and then the other but whichever one didn't have food at the moment kept its mouth busy blatting away.

As I watched, papa/mama landed. S/he didn't help but looked on, rather scornfully.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: JennieG
Date: 03 Aug 13 - 06:45 PM

On my morning walk I am accompanied by the sound of rainbow lorikeets chattering in the eucalypt trees above, while I dodge the falling blossoms - the lorikeets are nectar-feeding birds, so they chew on the blossoms which of course then fall to the ground leaving a snowy sticky carpet. The air is crisp, fairly cool but not quite cold (although my nose doesn't quite believe that) and I am pleased to get home and have breakfast, sitting in the sun coming in the window. Sometimes I am greeted by the little black and white puss down the street, but not today.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 12 Aug 13 - 05:15 AM

Yesterday my brother and I went to a story telling event at Corrigall farm museum we heard some grand tales but as is always the way with me while my ears were on the story my mind was weaving the things I saw and heard into my own tale.


There was a nip in the air as they sat together in the old grain barn. The peat fire under the grain kiln reeked like the lums o' hell but gave of little heat having been to newly lit to be profitable.

One lass drew the auld knitted blanket across her knees silently thanking her grandmother who had spent the hours knitting it while waiting for her to be born. She looked at the squares for a moment lost in the colours, shades of purple and green for the moors, blues and greys for the sea.   There were the yellow of the lichens, the dark brown of the peat and stone and a stony red that granny had said was to reminder of the Red Heads of Eday where the family had come from.

She remembered as a child how her granny would point to one of the squares and tell her tales o trows and hogboons, selkies and the Finn folk. These would be woven with tales of the peoples, from the laird to the old Skatehorn a tramp weel kent around the mainland in days gone by. But the tales she liked the best were those of how the normally quiet island folk would outwit the press gang.

Now she snuggled in the weel loved blanket as Tam o Biggin rose like the great oak doors on the cathedral solid and strong.

"Weel fowks ah'll tell thee the tale oh how I came tae the storytellin."

The tale he told set well the scene for their gathering for it set folk to laughing at the misadventures oh a young man who had come to the hairst hame wie neither a tune a rhyme or a tale tae tell. As his stentorious voice eased to a halt like Raymie Manson's Clydesdales at the end o a furrow a softer voice moved the evening forward wie the tale oh grannies muckle bed or how the farmyard came in the hoose wie peedie Mary.

The supper wis a grand affair wie home brew, bannocks both floory and bere served wie cheese still squeaky frae the still room topped aff wie pancakes and scones served wie rhubarb jam.

Tales flew aboot the room like Whaps in the fog till een wur droopin and hieds sinkin ontae breests till at last meg o' Aglath spoke.

"Tis a fine night we have had and here is one last peedie tale see ye on yer road."

Ye aw ken the auld ruined kirk doon by the shore weel there wis a lad used tae attend that kirk cried Jimmo Bews. Jimmo wis a fine lad wie a fiddle and wis aft times cried oan tae play fur neighbour fowk. A nicht he wis headin home frae playin at the weddin o Jock Burgess he walked along briskly whistlin some oh the tunes that were runnin through his head. As he approached the kirk he saw lights in the building, "strange" thought he "I wonder who can be in the kirk at this hour fur theres nae need tae be in the kirk sae early in the morning."

So though it wid hae bin wiser tae hurry on hame the courage o ale hid him change course till he loupit ower the dyke and headed up tae the door fur a look. He fair goggled in surprise for where there should be an empty room (For in those days maist folk stood during the service) was a brightly lit hall filled wie fowk . now Jimmo hid heard o the fair fowk but hid believed them tae be awfy peedie but these lads and lassies were near his ain five fit but o far slighter build.

Someone spotted him and the hall quietened till a bonny lass approached him.

"Sir that is a fine fiddle I see you carrying and as you can see we could not find a fiddler willing to play for my sisters wedding would you be kind to us and play us a few tunes."

Weel although he had been brought up to be afraid o the fair fowk Jimmo wis a kind hearted lad and the thought of a wedding without a tune to dance to filled him with sadness so he stepped into the room and lifted his fiddle and began to play. My how they danced through reels and strathspeys they stepped lightly and always the lass who first spotted him stayed by his side and praised his fine playing.
They danced till the sun was peeping ower the breest o the brae and a distant cock crow was heard. The bonnie lass who had invited him in thanked him for his kindness to them she gave him a bag o siller for his pay and a blessing that his music would always gladden the heart of all who heard it. She asked if he would consent to come back each year to play for them and to tell the truth since he was half in love wie the lass already he quickly agreed.

And so my friends Jimmo did what we must now and wended he weary way home. But he never told anyone about the fair folks use o the kirk and each year on the longest night he would quietly leave the town to go play for his lady and her friends. He grew older but still he kept his tryst with the lady till one dance night he sighed to the still young girl who stood beside him that this might be his last dance for them. He was now an old man and not so able to walk the mile to the auld kirk a new one having been built in the town.

The lass smiled and asked him if he loved her Jimmo held her hand having laid his fiddle by to talk with his friends for a moment.
"Lass I have loved you so weel all these years that I never took to me a bride from the town."
She kissed him soundly to the cheers of her friends "Then my bonny lad come marry me this night and stay with me forever."
No sooner had he agreed than he felt the aches leave his old bones, his back straightened and he felt a bit light in the head so he closed his een.
Warm arms wrapped round him whispering to open his eyes and look at the man she had married. But when he did so he near swooned with shock for the reflection in the mirror she held showed him as he had been the first night he had ever played for the fair fowks dance.

Back in the town folks said that the old man must have wandered of in the night and fallen over the cliff for he was never seen again. Should you wander past the ruins of the auld kirk tonight on your way home listen you quietly and you might just hear the sweet sound of the fiddle and the dancers laughing.

I bid you all goodnight.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 12 Aug 13 - 09:46 AM

Thank you for that one, Meg!

I've no stories this lovely Maine morning, but the crows in the field are busy. I think they have found an owl or a hawk to annoy, or even a fox. I suspect it may be one of the family of hawks in the woods behind the cottage. And two mornings ago I had a dragonfly sitting watch on my porch for a few hours. The field is full of dragonflies of all colors. There are blue-bodied ones with black and white wings called Widow Skimmers, and reddish ones with golden-amber wings, and my guardian of of Saturday morning was a bluish-white fellow with black spots on his wings. And like birds, the males are much more colorful than the females. And in the little ponds and marshes nearby, there are bright blue ones and shiny red ones, and the occasional emerald green damselfly settling on a reed and folding his wings on his back.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 12 Aug 13 - 09:55 AM

Tami your evocative descriptions sparks my hunger to visit with you someday and see these wonders for myself.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 12 Aug 13 - 10:18 AM

And your stories have the same effect on me, Meg. It's a beautiful, fascinating, magical world we live in, isn't it?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Ebbie
Date: 12 Aug 13 - 12:05 PM

If there is such a thing as a totem for each person - as native folk around here say- mine is the dragonfly. My most recent encounter was the closest.

I was walking on the leafy path to *the* glacier- as we speak of our largest and closest one - with a new acquaintance and dragonflies were lifting off everywhere to the left and right of us as we passed. I said, These are all little ones. I like the big ones; they always make me think of helicopters with tiny people inside.

Just then a large one lifted up and we watched him fly away across the quiet highway and almost out of sight. We walked on a couple of steps and looked up at the whizzing sound approaching. Here came the dragonfly again straight toward us, passed us and flew down the pathway we had just traveled. We watched him go.

And then he turned and flew back. This time he flew straight at me and I offered him my shoulder.

Instead, he landed gently on my right cheek and held on. Did you know they have little hooks on their feet? I didn't know that, but it was distinctly so.

And his belly raised and fell with his breathing. I felt in touch with something magical. And my acquaintance clasped her hands together and squealed, Oh, I wish I had a camera!
                      ******************
A friend of mine was biking down a path when he doubled back because something had caught his eye: a huge dragonfly, whole and strong but quite dead. He brought it to me and it rests on a bed of white cotton on my dresser.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 12 Aug 13 - 09:48 PM

For you, Ebbie: Guardian of my cottage.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Ebbie
Date: 12 Aug 13 - 10:31 PM

Thanks, Tami! There are so many kinds and colors and sizes and configurations of them. Recently I have taken up a water class and I have painted three very different ones. One of them has a pink body, lacy orange wings and a shiny red head! My favorite of those three, though, is an all blue one, three different shades, from baby to cobalt to navy.

Oddly, my mother didn't like them- and from her we learned to call them 'snake doctors'. Suffice it to say, she didn't like snakes.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Ebbie
Date: 13 Aug 13 - 02:33 AM

I should clarify that: the three that I painted I took from photos, not from real life.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 14 Aug 13 - 03:41 PM

The schools go back next Tuesday and I had promised the boys I would take them to the ice cream parlour. We had tried on our way home on Saturday after My brother and I had piled both of them and their mum into the car and went to watch the waves at the Broch of Birsay. Sadly we had forgotten it was the county show in Kirkwall that day and it was shut. The youngest lad has problems and does not cope well with plans being changed so we expected him to kick of but Roy must have been a calming influence for he merely sulked quietly.

Today we tried again this time everything went well we went into town to get some shopping then stopped at Jerry's on the way home. The shop is tiny with just four tables and half the menu filled with Orkney names for the original sundaes. What can be better than sitting looking out over the Stenness Loch towards the towering sentinels of the Ring of Brodgar while eating a toffee fudge sundae.

It is said the stones were some local giants who had offended the local witch with their noise on the way home from the New Year revels. She followed at a distance and watched as they danced in a drunken circle around the top of mound one stood apart from the others and feeling thirsty he went down to the loch to get some water. No sooner had he stood up from the waters edge than she cast her spell turning them all into stone. And there they stand to this day though it is said that on the stroke of midnight each New Year they are allowed to move down to the loch beside their brother to drink the fresh water.

It just shows how dangerous it is to annoy an Orkney lass, mind you perhaps some lads have learned something for both boys thanked me nicely when they were dropped at home


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 01 Sep 13 - 09:17 PM

Once there were a bunch of uni students who all lived on the same floor of a dormitory. Most of them were good friends, but one was a bit immature and annoying. Most of the students living on that floor avoided her, and she went through several roommates before one kind young woman volunteered to be her roommate. At the end of the year, may of the students moved into off-campus housing, and one of the students who hadn't had much patience with the young woman while living in the dorm took the time to get to know her better. They became good friends, with the off-campus friend inviting the on-campus friend over occasionally to watch movies or share a meal.

By the start of the following year, this had become a weekly ritual. The on-campus friend's roommate gathered a bunch of friends together and informed them that the on-campus friend had a birthday shortly after the semester started and that no one had ever noticed in the hub-bub accompanying the start of the term. The off-campus friend volunteered to host a party and the friends started making grand plans for a surprise party. A collection was taken up for party food, her favorite movie was acquired on video, someone finagled a ride to the closest town with a supermarket, 17 miles away, to get a cake. Several flavors of Ben and Jerry's ice cream were purchased, and pizza was ordered, one with all her favorite toppings on it. One friend was nominated to get her to the party. On the day of the party, all the friends were busy getting all the final details taken care of. When she walked in the door of the off-campus friend's apartment and everyone yelled "Surprise!", it took her a while to realize that 1) it was a party, and 2) that it was for her. When she realized what was going on, she exclaimed "This is the nicest thing anyone has ever done for me!" and burst into tears. When she had stopped crying, the friends learned that no one had ever thrown her a party before in her life. And the friends all realized that they had done not a nice thing, but a truly amazing thing.

I lost contact with Jess a long time ago, and have always felt bad about it. And I have always remembered how it felt when we discovered that she'd never had a party. I've tried numerous sites on the internet over the years and always came up empty - until tonight. She joined Facebook about a week ago and tonight has been spent messaging back and forth. I'm sitting here typing with a big smile on my face, I'm glad to have my friend back, and doubly glad I took the time to get to know her and to be the host for that party and all the movie nights we had.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: JennieG
Date: 02 Sep 13 - 01:56 AM

Tami, that's lovely to hear! You and your friend must have a lot of catching up to do.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 02 Sep 13 - 02:17 AM

Tami that is wonderful I hope you both find happiness in meeting up again.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 18 Sep 13 - 02:08 AM

The past few days have been rough here on the island, gale force winds, driving rain and squally hail showers definitely not weather to go out unless you absolutely had to.

Today however something woke me even earlier than my usual 6am. It took me a few moments to figure out what it was, the world was quiet the wind had stopped trying to move my wee house to the bottom of the hill.

Although it was still dark out I decided to get up and watch the dayspring that peaceful moment before sunrise when the sky begins to rub the darkness from its eyes. The night tries valiantly to hold its power over the sky but the battle is already lost for like drops of water into ink at first seem to make no difference. Then comes the one drop where you eye sees a difference and from that point the march to sunrise is inevitable.

Each time I watch the dayspring it fills me with renewed hope reminding me that even in those times when things are bad and no relief can be seen if you keep on working towards it dawn will come one effort will make the change visible, you never know which small thing will make the difference you just have to keep trying and watching for the dayspring.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Ebbie
Date: 18 Sep 13 - 03:24 AM

I love "dayspring".


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 19 Sep 13 - 08:28 AM

Little things mean a lot

It was on the thread for Charlie and his wife I spoke about the little things that keep you going when someone is in hospital, it reminded me of the song sung by Kitty Kallen.


Little Things Mean A Lot

Blow me a kiss from across the room
Say I look nice when I'm not
Touch my hair as you pass my chair
Little things mean a lot
Give me your arm as we cross the street
Call me at six on the dot
A line a day when you're far away
Little things mean a lot
Don't have to buy me diamonds or pearls
Champagne, sables, and such
I never cared much for diamonds and pearls
'cause honestly, honey, they just cost money
Give me a hand when I've lost the way
Give me your shoulder to cry on
Whether the day is bright or gray
Give me your heart to rely on
Send me the warmth of a secret smile
To show me you haven't forgot
For now and forever, that's always and ever
Honey, little things mean a lot


Sometimes it isn't words that matter it's the little touches and smiles even if they are sad ones all the little unspoken communications that tell us people care even when they don't know what to say.

Sadly when we are scattered all over the world sometimes words are all we have they are our cyber hand on the shoulder . There was one old lady I used to visit who always placed her frail hands very gently on top of mine as we spoke, her touch like a butterfly kiss yet the love and care it gave was stronger than any castle.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 11 Oct 13 - 03:55 AM

For three days the wind howled around the house I am never sure when it does that if it is a cry of pain or its attempt to strike terror into the hearts of those huddled inside. The rain came not like tears but like waves of miniature daggers hurling themselves against the old walls and anyone foolish enough to venture out. Darkness descends and winter strode into town with all the vulgar brashness it could muster.

Our small town however is not quite ready to give in to the cold look winter has cast us. For a moment it is beaten back now the weather sits stunned on the horizon unsure of what it is supposed to do.

The town holds its breath till not even a blade of grass moves afraid to draw winters attention. Birds hide untrusting of this quietness with the exception of one rather stunned house sparrow who sits on the fence across the road watching the thin band of brightness on the distant horizon gently turning the darkness over the town to a lighter grey. It bravely tries to expand its territory of light but the low cloud fights with steely determination to maintain its dominion over the town today however it will lose the battle as the light quietly nibbles away at the edges of darkness.

Gradually birds emerge from their shelters today they will feast on the rowan berries. The residents of the small town follow their example and life creeps out of heated buildings onto quite streets suffused with the last vestiges of autumn warmth.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 29 Oct 13 - 08:38 AM

Today, I am sitting at my table and reflecting on how lucky I am. I live in a beautiful place, work with wonderful people, and am surrounded by amazing friends.

The last month and a half has been a whirlwind of joy. Four of the last six weekends have focused on music. Two shanty sings at The Press Room, the Portsmouth Maritime Folk Festival, the pre-Getaway gathering at Sinsull's, and the Getaway itself. The joy that singing with others brings heals my raveled nerves and soothes my soul. And introducing someone new to that joy has been satisfying, too. Besides the music, another circle of friends has gathered me into their fellowship. An autumn party with good food, good company, excellent conversation, and adorable puppies was another reminder of my wealth of friends.

This past week was the jewel in the crown, though. It says a lot about one's work environment when one chooses to spend time with one's co-workers when off-duty. One of my fellow rangers has access to a 125 year old family camp on a private island on an inland lake. We are privileged to be his guests in that little piece of paradise once a year. There are only two ways to get there, by boat or by hiking in five miles and fording a stream to get to the island. We hike, as Bandit comes with us, and a nervous dog in a canoe is never a good idea. The hike in goes through a cedar/pine/hemlock forest that has grown up around ancient, mossy boulders left by the glacier during the last ice age, skirts the lake, and arrives at a marshy area with the stream. Some years there is a lot of water, some years it's dry. The trail crosses the stream and one arrives on the island. There is a peacefulness that is immediately noticeable: at least seven generations' worth of happy memories and good times have made this a place out of time, a realm apart from the ordinary.

There is no electricity, no cell phone service, no radios. There are shelves and shelves of books, cupboards filled with games, and a huge trestle table in a large dining room. All beckon one to interact with one's companions directly. Without all the modern conveniences, one quickly falls back into older, more natural rhythms: firewood must be cut and split by hand, water hauled from the lake, the fire tended to lest it go out. Time has little meaning there, we woke when the sun rose, ate when we were hungry, sat in front of the fire in conversation, played games by the light of the gas lights, and went to bed when we were tired. Everyone fell naturally into chores: Andy splitting wood with maul and wedges, myself doing dish duty, Michael being the host and knowing where everything was and how things worked, Jenn mastering the use of the percolator. Cooking was a communal affair, whoever emptied the water filter for drinking water immediately refilled it, the water pitcher was kept full.

When our short time came to an end, we left things clean and tidy, the wood box next to the fireplace full, and everything they way we found it. I like to think we added to the aura of happy memories and good times that envelop the island and that the next person to arrive there gets as much peace and contentment as we did.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 29 Oct 13 - 02:11 PM

sounds like a wonderful place lass


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 24 Nov 13 - 03:08 PM

What happens when you cross a four year old with a fourteen year old and a forty year old :) Christine.

She has a "How many sleeps till Santa" ap on her phone and Christmas ringtones I kid you not that lassie is Christmas daft.

Yesterday morning I picked he up and headed of to Skara Brae It is a historic Scotland property and they were having a members event. we had mincemeat pies and Christine had mulled wine :( I was driving so orange juice for me. we wandered round the shop while she oohed and ahed at the Christmassy things, I got her a small tree decoration and you would have thought I had given her the crown jewels.

once I got her eased away from the decorations we went for a drive through the crisp landscape. The cows have all been taken in now the fields seem strangely quiet and still like a forgotten memory of summer.

a meander through the countryside brought us to the Merkister hotel on the Harray Loch to sit over a lovely fresh seafood lunch watching the last swans trying to make up their minds whether or not to go on holiday.

then into town to examine the small trees that have been put outside every shop they are all about three foot high and have some of the weirdest decorations ever. The dress shop had cut out and coloured miniature dresses and the chemist hung theirs with empty pill packets :. I thought I had got her tired out till we neared home then she wanted to make Christmas cards. I am not sure which is the most exhausting her or the twins .


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: JennieG
Date: 24 Nov 13 - 04:46 PM

Megan, sounds like a fun day!

At present my little ray of sunshine is the fact that housework is out of the question due to a shoulder operation last Tuesday. Unfortunately so is sewing, knitting, crocheting, playing guitar and uke, but I am still here to enjoy the sunshine and the glorious rain which has blessed our parched earth lately. The hill behind us which recently was sere and brown has sprung into green life.....such a lovely sight.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 25 Nov 13 - 04:11 AM

Aww Jenny I hope the shoulder improves in a timely fashion. The trouble with housework is no matter how often you do it, it is still to be done.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: JennieG
Date: 25 Nov 13 - 04:24 AM

Indeed, Megan! I am noticing that the floor needs attention and I am averting my eyes. In a few days I may suggest to Himself that a broom be wielded. Meanwhile, I am not walking round barefoot......


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: maeve
Date: 06 Apr 14 - 08:04 AM

Megan, we need you!

There is real sunshine here, all the more welcome for the encroaching clouds. I can see the brown grasses and dark trunks of the apple orchard with only a few clumps and raggedy sheets of snow. The air is cold with wind, but our pretty bantams and the rollicking robins know what season it is.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 06 Apr 14 - 09:24 AM

ah it arrived then lass I passed it on once we were done with it yesterday.

It was a slow day I was taking some time to myself to sort out my thoughts the fog was the tick unpleasant kind that makes you want to stay indoors. About noon I had finished the bit of writing I had been doing and behold the sun shone.

I sent a text and half an hour later I was picking up Christine and the boys. I have been giving her some driving lessons so she took over the wheel and set of.

The run down through Holm with its long straight road allowed me to rejoice in views I had not had much chance to enjoy as a driver.

we stopped at the forth barrier which links Burray and South Ronaldsay. Though these days it bears little resemblance to the other barriers the sand having built up against one side.

There they settled down for a picnic while I slowly made my way down onto the beach. I had forgotten the great peace and joy to be found at the waters edge. The playful slap of the small waves on the wet sand then the low rumble as it ran away back down the beach like a little boy who had just pulled the pigtails of his favourite girl.

We had gone looking for Groatie Buckies (small Cowrie shells) but there were none to be found on that beach so after they had walked to the other end of the beach, a task beyond my abilities (I was just proud to have managed to walk down onto the soft sand) we set of back the way we came till I suggested they stop at the next barrier on the Glimps Holm side.

The beach there has steps down to it so I couldn't get down but I sat with the windows open listing to the gentle summery sounds till I noticed the gulls were starting to cry for rain. I closed the window and was thankful the others had spotted the cloud and made it back to the car before it decided to share its tears.

after they were all safely back home I decided I couldn't be bothered cooking and went down to the Peedie Chippie a small van that parks down by the shore. Once again the rain had stopped and I listened to the garden birds in the trees of the house next to the van singing like a great choir each with their own lines, melodies and harmonies.

As I watched across the bay three birds flew low in tight formation along the curve of the bay reminding me of our islands military history.

    Low they flew in tight formation
    Skimming the waters
    Below the crest of the hill
    Desperate to stay below the radar
    Sure now of their destination
    They broke cover and skimmed over the waves
    heading for the safety of home
    As the dusk shielded them from prying eyes


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 21 Apr 14 - 07:32 AM

What a day!

I am not very good at visiting I keep intending to but rarely have the courage even with friends. So two weeks ago my brother who I get the local paper sent to asked me if the picture was of Dauvit's uncle and aunt, I do not get the paper now so I had to go hunting for a neighbour with an old copy. Sure enough there was their picture showing them being presented with flowers for their diamond wedding.

I made a card and worked out if I had enough money to buy a small gift. Of course I had still not got round to an actual visit so when I spoke to my brother on Saturday morning I decided to take my courage in both hands and get on the phone. I might put it of till another day if I think about it but if I make a promise it will be done so by phoning and telling them I would come on Sunday I could not talk myself out of it.

The reason Roy had not initially recognised them was that they were all done up fancy and he had never seen Uncle George in anything but dungarees or old working denims, slack as you like and plenty of pockets for nails and small tools.

Any way yesterday was absolutely glorious weather so I set of for the hour long drive to the other end of Mainland (The local name for the main island of the Orkney archipelago. What a delight smiling daffodils along the roadside and lambs taking their first bold explorations of the world. The water of Scapa flow looked like it had been liberally sprinkled with glitter as it sparkled in the sunlight.

They were out the door to greet me even before I got pulled into their drive. They are what I would describe as Auld Orkney folks. Not in age (though they are in their eighties) Guests are important and must be given food and drink as soon as they are in the door so I had barely got lowered onto the couch before Netty called us through for "a bite o dinner" I had deliberately chosen 2pm to allow them to have dinner in peace (This being the main meal of the day for farm folk). I should have known better, they had deferred their meal till they could share it with me.

Plain fairin is the order of the day farm soup (I guess ye kin tak the fowk oot o the fairm but ye canny tak the fairm ooto the fowks.). There is plain soup, usually lots of whatever vegetables that grew in the farm garden, carrots, onions, swedes (Possibly rutabaga for our us cousins.)with the addition of stock and barley or dried peas and lentils. Special days soup is basically the same but has bits of the hen or beef left in. The farms animals were in the old days a valuable source of income especially hens so it had to be a fairly special occasion before one was killed. Well it must have been a special day for the hen was served up it is boiled with the vegetables to give the soup flavour then served with stuffing(Skirlie, a mix of oatmeal onions and suet cooked .) and tatties boiled in their skins. It may seem strange to modern ears but a family treat would have been something like a rhubarb pie and custard but for special guests it was ice-cream and tinned fruit. Why was that so special? Well if you think of it everything else could be provided by farm and garden but the ice-cream and tinned fruit had to be bought which would have entailed a journey probably of several miles usually on foot to the local shop.

The meal past we settled to watch a video they had been sent of their grandsons wedding. George had just undergone chemo before it and had not felt up to the long drive south so the family made sure they could share in the day. I am sure many of you will have heard the conversation from older relatives whether watching a video or looking at photographs.

G: "That's Nicholas the grooms brother."
Followed several moments later when the scene had changed by
N: "That's Nicholas the grooms brother."
G: "No it's not that's cousin (insert name)"
And so on rapidly descending into a comedy as memories are just not quite fast enough to keep up with the film.

Any way it was a lovely day with lots of memories and friendship with two very special people.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: maeve
Date: 21 Apr 14 - 09:12 AM

Hello, Megan. Thanks for sharing your visit with us. I'm glad for you.

Maeve, who just made (plain) farm soup on Good Friday.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: GUEST,pete from seven stars link
Date: 21 Apr 14 - 12:40 PM

I suspect "plain" farm soup will be more healthy than shop bought....and probably more healthy!.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 21 Apr 14 - 01:10 PM

Indeed it is Pete healthier and cheaper. I was brought up on plain fare and there is little to beat it. the plain in plain soup was in no way derogatory it merely meant the everyday in my parents and grandparents time meat and chicken was saved for special occasions, apart from mince.

I remember one Sunday a minister was talking about heaven and how we would all be able to feast on the very best of foods only to be interrupted by a low but carrying voice from among the congregation. "Weel beuy we will be weel aff fur mince and tatties." the poor man stumble through the rest of his sermon totally lost that this country parish would prefer mince and potato to lobster and venison.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 21 Apr 14 - 06:13 PM

Thank you for yet another glimpse of Orkney, Meg. Feeding one's guests is important to New Englanders, too. And I understand bit about the desserts, as well. When I was little and we'd visit the great-aunties up in northern Maine, they'd serve the store-bought cookies when we came to visit. I always preferred my great-auntie Lucy's home-made molasses cookies and her filled cookies (usually dates, but sometimes raspberry jam) to the store-bought fare, though.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 22 Apr 14 - 01:58 AM

Same here lass Aunt Netty makes great apple pie scones and pancakes the tinned food is awfly sweet for me. What is it like around your area at this time of year I love your descriptions of the things you see.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 22 Apr 14 - 12:25 PM

Winter has been loathe to give up its grip here, last week we had an inch and a half of snow followed by several days of below average temperature. At first, I was very upset about the cruel trick Mother Nature had played, but when I got to work and went down to say good morning to the ospreys, I discovered where a fox had made her rounds, and back tracked her for about a mile. I love tracking foxes, they are very no-nonsense, going from point A to point B in the straightest possible line, hind feet carefully placed in the tracks left by the front feet. Whenever she deviated from her straight line, it was to inspect a squirrel cache or sniff under a log. She also went down the bank and into the salt marsh, where I wouldn't follow - she may not sink into the muck, but I surely would. There is the carcass of a dead turkey down there and she may have paused for a snack.

Park visitors are often shocked at my attitude about dead things in the park. Many of them are visiting from Portland, Maine's largest city. Although it isn't very large in the general scheme of heavily populated areas, many of the people living there are out of touch with nature.They don't stop to think about the fact that death is a part of the cycle in nature. The turkey may be dead, and to humans unsightly and smelly, but it is a boon to many of the other creatures in our park. The gulls, the fox, the raccoon whose tracks were perfectly preserved in the mud until the tide came in, even the mice, all will benefit from that smelly, unsightly dead bird.

The woods were still brown, no wildflowers had dared poke their heads up when I left the park for my days off Saturday afternoon. But the sun has been shining, and the days have warmed considerably and there is the faintest hint of red to be seen in the tops of the red maples. They are the first to flower, rolling out the red carpet for the rest of the woodland wildflowers. The twigs of the red osier dogwood on the shore are brilliant red, a splash of color against a drab background. Soon, the fragrant, tiny blossoms of the mayflowers (or trailing arbutus, depends on who you talk to) will make their appearance. One has to get close to the ground to smell them, but it is oh-so-worth it.

Here at home, I am surrounded by lovely little ponds and marshes, most of which are home to frogs of all sorts. The wood frogs, frozen solid all winter, are awake and making their clacking calls that sound almost duck-like. The spring peepers have also started calling. They're not quite in full chorus yet, when they are, I can hear them in the house with the windows closed. The marsh is also home to a pair of redwing blackbirds, another sign of spring and their distinctive "konk-a-ree" is as welcome as the peepers' chorus.

Phoebes (a species of flycatcher) have been investigating the roof over my door as a possible nest site. They like nesting under eaves and other protected nooks and crannies on buildings. Although it could get messy if they do, I would welcome them. They are fun to watch, catching their prey on the wing, scolding poor Phoebe, whomever she might be, and sitting on branches and wires flicking their tails. And they eat insects, always a plus. Other birds provide spots of color in the trees about the property. A bright red male cardinal sitting in the top of the biggest pine tree singing "cheer, cheer, cheer". Bluebirds flitting about, sometimes landing on the wires attached to the cottage right outside my windows, to my great delight. American robins with their rusty red breasts pulling worms out of the ground in the field behind the house. Occasionally a hairy woodpecker will visit one of the ancient sugar maples, looking for insects under the bark, his spot of red on the top of his head a contrast to his black-and-white body. The wee chickadees, looking similar to your coal tits, hardy little year-round residents, males now making their two-note whistle in addition to their "chick-a-dee-dee-dee" call. I love all the birds, but I have a special fondness for the chickadees. Other favorites are the crow family, who come and visit the compost pile every morning, and the ravens, who call from the woods behind the field.

The deer in the park fell victim to the coyotes this past winter. It doesn't bother me, coyotes need to eat, too, and like the turkey, others have benefited from their death. However, there are still plenty near my cottage. I had to stop the car to allow five of them to cross the road only a few hundred feet from the cottage. They are graceful creatures, and beautiful to watch, with large ears, long legs, and their distinctive tails, as long as my arm from fingertips to elbow, white on the underside, used to signal the alarm. That white flag is unmistakable and is what gives them their name: white-tailed deer.

More later, when spring progresses a bit more.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 22 Apr 14 - 12:41 PM

Oh how I wish that was a recording blind people could immerse themselves in your world seeing it through your eyes. I don't know some of your wildlife but your words created a world I could relax into and enjoy you have an amazing gift.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 22 Apr 14 - 01:17 PM

Megan, for you :)

I took the photo of the deer out my window one morning last year.
White-tail

The birds are links to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. You can hear the bird calls as well as see what they look like.


Eastern Bluebird
Eastern Phoebe
American Robin
Black-capped Chickadee
Hairy Woodpecker
Red-winged blackbird

Frogs:

Spring Peeper
Wood Frog

The plants photos are all mine.

Plants:
Mayflower
Red maple

Red osier dogwood


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Apr 14 - 01:26 PM

A cheat version of the plain soup uses a stock cube to about a gallon of soup. Not much but it does boost the soup considerably. Equally, pearl barley and - gasp - dumplings on occasion.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 22 Apr 14 - 01:54 PM

Oops! I appear to have lost the cardinal!

Northern Cardinal


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: ranger1
Date: 05 May 14 - 10:14 AM

What a difference a little warmth and sun make! The mayflowers are in full bloom, small delicate white flowers and green leathery leaves growing close to the ground. The fragrance is heavenly, and I consider no spring to be complete without getting down on the ground to smell them. The trout lilies in the little marshy area in the woods at the park are blooming now. Beautiful yellow flowers with green and brown mottled leaves. The leaves look like the markings on our native brook trout, hence the name. On the sheltered banks near the shore, the first dandelions have bloomed. Many people think of them as weeds, but I love them. The windflowers (or wood anemones) are starting to bud, as are the dwarf ginseng, and bluebead lilies. When the windflowers bloom, there will be carpets of their white flowers, all nodding their heads at the slightest breeze. The dwarf ginseng will make perfect little balls of blossoms, hugging the edges of marsh and stream alike. Bluebead lilies create spots of yellow in the woods, not tied to wet areas like the trout lilies, the shape of their leaves reminding me of rabbit ears. Later, after the flowers are gone, they will form large blue berries that look like the pop beads I played with as a child.

The deer herd at the park is alive and well. We counted four in the woods near the car park. The coyotes may have done us a favor by removing a few over the winter. They are all still in their winter coats of dark gray, but that will change soon enough to the reddish color of their summer coats.

Both pairs of osprey on the bay side of the park are now sitting on eggs. We had the former head of the North Carolina state park system visit last Friday and the male from the island pair performed like he'd been trained. Two fish caught in the course of an hour, one of which he devoured on a tree at the edge of the island in full view of our guest. The eiders are still dotting the bay, the males easy to spot in their white and black breeding plumage. The warblers are making their way back from their wintering grounds and filling the woods with song. And the woods resound with the sound of the pileated woodpeckers banging on trees and making their distinctive calls. It's hard to mistake a pileated for anything but what it is: crow-sized and with a magnificent red crest. When they peck at a tree it sounds as though someone were going at a tree with an axe. The large, oblong holes they make are also unmistakable. Last year, we had a family of them nesting in a dying birch tree near the entrance booth, much to the delight of my co-worker John.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 05 May 14 - 11:09 AM

I Hate house work :) I find it very physically demanding and either end up having to take my inhalers and or the pain killers or to exhausted to do anything else. Today it was all three which has me very stressed so I stopped for a time and to my delight found a haven of peace.

I would love to see your mayflowers in the UK which flower you are talking about seems to depend on the area you are in. Where I grew up it was the Hawthorn with its branches dressed in bridal white with a myriad of small white bouquets.

Where I am now it refers to the smiling sunshine faces of the primroses as they shyly flirt from the safety of the grass. our local beauties carpet the ground on good years varying from almost white into which but a single tear of the sun fell to bold hussies in their yellow gowns.

Thank you for bringing the peace of the valley and your wilder areas into my drab day.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: maeve
Date: 07 May 14 - 08:22 AM

Megan- Mayflower / Trailing Arbutus / Epigaea repens

Adding to Tami's list one of my favorites, Bloodroot / Sanguinaria canadensis


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 07 May 14 - 02:41 PM

thank you maeve I can now see them scattered like confetti from the heavens spilled across the earth.

A little smile for today. I have been teaching Christine to drive After the lesson we left town and went to a place called Woodwick house which has a really strange little chapel in the grounds it is a wonderful place with with a path winding down by the side of a burn which does freerunning noisily over miniature waterfalls. At this time of year the water is brown with the peaty run of from the hill causing it to shine like amber seeming to glow as though a lamp had been lit behind it. To your other side the ground is covered with bluebells and their pale lilac cousins.

On the way back Christine noticed we were low on petrol so another detour to Dounby of course on such a pleasant day we had to buy ice cream and drove of to the lochside viewpoint to enjoy it. I sat listening to the radio while Christine wandered over to look at the information boards. I could see her look down to read then step back frowning looking around then her head shot up and a stunned look crossed her face.

When she wandered back over I asked her what happened. "Well the boards said you could see the standing stones and I couldn't see them. Then I realised I was looking at them straight across them." sometimes that lassie canny see the nose on her face :)
the viewpoint
woodwick house


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 17 May 14 - 06:39 PM

The north end of Hoy must be the wildest part of Orkney. Peat and heather covering the hills where few houses dare to lay foundation, preferring to seek the relative to cluster together on the few patches of arable land down near the shore.

At this time of year the heather is brown, the peat is brown even the water in the burn and the lochan beside Betty Corrigal's lonely grave is brown. some might say it was a bleak and depressing place but they would be wrong.

I stood by her grave a young woman condemned to lie in the peat in that no mans land between parishes by an world unforgiving of the distress of an unmarried pregnancy that caused her to take her own life.

Here it was I saw the beauty that had been gifted to her. Tiny flowers sheltering among the sturdy heather stems like the bright sparks from a disturbed peat in the hearth. wild violets peep shyly up at you as you walk by and the small orchid tries valiantly to catch your attention others sprinkle the pathside with yellow and white.

The wind is harsh as it funnels down the valley between the hills carrying the salty spray far inland. People will tell you nothing grows here but the heather but people are often wrong. Like the Orcadians themselves the plants stay low to avoid the wind they don't blaze and brag but the beauty is there for those who take the time to look for it.

There is an old Scots saying "Guid gear in sma buik" which translates as good things come in small packages.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 28 May 14 - 01:50 PM

Now don't you lassies start laughing but since Dauvit passed away the neighbour three doors down has taken to popping in with some buns or a bar of chocolate.

Nice and romantic eh

Only one problem . He is 90 deaf and has the attention span of goldfish with amnesia. He coughs and sneezes all over the place only taking his hankie out after the sneeze. Why am I being grumpy well the other day every third statement was "Have you no caught a cauld yet" interspersed with variations on "How's yer brither daen" and wanting to know how many tablets a day I have to take.

needless to say I now have a stinker of a cold which to an asthmatic is no fun. I woke this morning feeling miserable and thoroughly sorry for myself.

So how is this a sunshine thought? Well when I finally got round to checking my emails there was a great surprise waiting. A lovely letter from a new writer friend in Colorado it made my head lift and my lips smile.

Do it today don't leave it to long
Make that call or sing that song
Just pop by for a cup of tea
Visit that friend you mean to see

Tell someone you love them
And show them you care
Go take them some flowers
Or a cake to share

Go get a move on do it today
Go make them smile do not delay
If you feel more relaxed in their happiness then
Get up in the morning and do it again.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 01 Jun 14 - 10:44 AM

I was sitting this morning thinking of Kat and listening to the birdsong Tami and Maeve have shared.

It set me thinking of the sheer joy of friendship and the wondrous gift the world wide web has given us. People oh so far apart, people who may never meet in the real world. Yet they are people who care and share tears and joy, the sadness and laughter, the worries and times of peace. They uphold and strengthen each other, when one founders in the darkness the others let their candles shine that bit brighter to help them get back on their feet. When sorrows or even just the stresses of everyday life dulls our vision another steps forward to polish our glasses with refreshing view.

Yes the internet has its problems but like a blank sheet of paper we have the power to create it we can weave the threads that connect us into a wonderful and radiant tapestry. So lets all get weaving this is our place these are our walls to decorate then we can sit down for a cup of tea and a natter.

He he he Gnu I promise I wont paint this room full of tumbling babies and dancing pink elephants :)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: GUEST,Pete from seven stars link
Date: 01 Jun 14 - 06:42 PM

Looks a great place to stay.   Who knows. Maybe, one day.   Pete.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Andrez
Date: 02 Jun 14 - 09:27 AM

Thank you all for the privilege of spending a little time bathing in the sunshine of this thread.

Cheers,

Andrez


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 03 Jun 14 - 10:55 AM

They sat in the morning sunlight after the rain had stopped fair drookit and woebegone. The breeze caught the lamppost for a moment as they snuggled before separating to try and wring out sodden feathers. Gulls and crows kept a wary eye in their direction, he had gotten a reputation of being one tough son of a bitch after he had seen of that Mallimack (Fulmar) the other day. Feathers preened to perfection they looked down at the window to see if the giant was moving, sometimes giant threw out a cup of seeds or some bread. Today however they were out of luck giant showed no sign of moving out of the box where it nested so with a final cooing call mr and mrs pigeon took wing for another garden with a more accommodating giant perhaps the first one would put something out later.

                                *****

I watched as they fussed around each other like a long married couple going out for the evening. She reached around him and tucked in a recalcitrant feather that insisted on standing up like an unruly flag on an otherwise calm day. He nuzzled her neck emphasising the white collar she wore like a necklace finally happy with their appearance they set of to whatever feast they were attending.

As the sky darkens for another shower I sit with the window open, the gulls are crying for rain and somewhere on the Hillside road the warbling coo-coo of the pigeons are as soothing on the ears as the lush greenness around me is on the eyes.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Andrez
Date: 04 Jun 14 - 06:28 AM

For the time being, I live in an urban environment. Fortunately the block is big and we are surrounded by trees and garden that give me the illusion of space and freedom. For what I have received, I am truly grateful, looking around the world today it could always have been worse.

On that theme, a couple of years ago I did some work with people with Acquired Brain Injury. Through the agency where I worked, the folks wrote a small book sharing snippets of their stories with the rest of the abled world. The cover of the book had a painting of a rainbow on it. Turning the cover over, there was a short description of what the book title and the rainbow meant to the writers. Try and keep a picture of a rainbow over a misty lake with some green rolling hills in the background in mind.

The book was called: "Memory is Like Air: Essential and Taken for Granted" and the inscription inside says: The front cover picture highlights for us that memories are similar to…….

Butterflies: beautiful and elusive

Rainbows: the end of a rainbow is where dreams can come true
Footprints: on the sand... so easily washed away

The sun:    warm but at times becomes clouded

A boat:       the long journey

Just something to share for reflection from a different place and 'space'.

Cheers,

Andrez


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: Sunshine Thoughts
From: Megan L
Date: 05 Jun 14 - 02:59 AM

That is a lovely description Andrez about 30 years ago my brother was almost killed when a drunken lorry driver struck his pushbike the physical wounds disappear from view but the affects of the head injury don't. It shows in little things a lot of people wouldn't notice like starting his packing at least three weeks before he goes on holiday "Just in case I forget something" and endless lists. He will be 79 this December and sadly no longer even trusts his lists so he phones me to tell me every appointment so I can write them down as well.

On the positive side my nieces think he is mr memory since he never forgets a birthday which I on the other hand am notorious for doing. It is amazing what that little magic book tells him :)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
 

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 28 July 6:20 AM EDT

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.