Saturday, August 10, 2019

August 10th, 2019

After a week of terribly hot weather

this was to have been 

a lazy Saturday, -

but you know how it is when it comes to

the schemes of mice and men going aft a-gley.....

it seems that also applies to old ladies with string, too!

I was so close to the end of the warp

I thought I would just finish off the last towel

I have been working on.

Which I did....

but the day's work didn't end there!

The end of a warp inspires one 

to unwind the beam, and stretch out the weaving

in the hallway...

and then, of course, one must examine

the whole thing for errors,

snip off the bits and pieces of thread,

and you might just as well throw it in the washing machine

and get that over with!!

An hour or so over the shower curtain

in the bathroom, 

and surely the fabric was dry enough

to press and cut apart!!!

By this time it is getting close to supper time...

but enthusiasm is not to be denied,

and here are a half a dozen blue towels,

hanging in the hallway,



The weather lady promised

and we are having a wonderful thunder and lightning show

in celebration.

A fitting end to a hot, hot week!

Bruce is at my feet - and Callie

is hiding in the closet

but I revel in the wonderful smell of rain,

and the windows and doors are all wide open!!

Here is Yundi playing Chopin's Raindrop Prelude

Lovely - enjoy!




Tuesday, August 06, 2019

August

August 6th, 2019


August

by Lizette Woodworth Rease

No wind, no bird. The river flames like brass.
On either side, smitten as with a spell
of silence, brood the fields;  in the deep grass,
edging the dusty roads,lie as they fell
handfuls of shriveled leaves from tree and bush;
but long the orchard fence and at the gate,
thrusting their saffron torches through the hush,
wild lilies blaze, and bees hum soon and late.
Rust coloaured the tall straggling briar, not one
rose left.  The spider sets its loom up there
close to the roots, and spins out in the sun
a silken web from twig to twig.  The air
is full of hot rank scents.  Upom the hill
Drifts the noon's single cloud, white, glasring, still.

We are well into August, and the hot, hot days that make it such a sultry month.  

The routine seems to be to keep the house cool, the garden well watered, 
and to find a shady spot out back for a late afternoon cooling drink
and a light read to go with it!

I start the day while it is still cool(ish)
in the loom room
threading the Glimakra, -

that weaving task that requires the most concentration
and morning is the time
most suited to my easily distracted
ninety-four year old brain!!!

A few bookish chores to do
on the computer
(bill paying day)
and I am ready to relax,
somewhere shady,
away from August's sulphurous heat,
where I can watch the butterflies
and the big fat bees,
and the hummingbirds,
as they delight and gorge themselves
on all the sunny late summer
flowers.




The weather man says
each day this week
will be warmer than the last,
and we will have to wait until Saturday
for refreshing showers.

Still, the village is full of happy, hot
vacationers.
Over the long August week-end
the usual pancake breakfast,
a wondrous car show
(I hear from those who attended), -
a reunion of the
Sober Motorcyclists

and the Ashnola valley
full of happy campers..
in the woods beside the creek,
dipping their toes and their fishing rods
into the water,
for all it has to offer....

(minnows, small trout, and tingling toes)

Oh August, what's but to love you....

But I love September more.......




Sunday, August 04, 2019

August 4th, 2019 - the circle of life








"The door to the past is a strange door.  It swings open and things pass through it, but they pass in one direction only.  No man can return across that threshold, though he can look down still and see the green light waver in his watery weeds"

Loren Eiseley,  "The Snout"  (The Immense Journey)

Looking for inspiration I found in the past a blog entry written on August 4th, 2009
 - ten years ago!

It seemed appropriate as I am re-reading Loren Eiseley...

The Unexpected Universe
The Star Thrower
The Immense Journey

For a time the Immense Journey was the only Eiseley books on the shelf,  having passed his other books to family, hoping to share with them his wisdom and philosophy.  However, through Thrift Books I have been able to obtain copies of those books I once gave away - (never expecting to live so long that I would want to once again be inspired!!!!)

Here is what I said about Loren Eiseley when I was ten years younger, - he seems to be a revolving wheel in my life, - someone whose philosophy overtakes me every decade, when life grows mundane!

August 4th, 2009

"Loren Eiseley seems passe now, as far as the library is concerned at any rate.  He was still searching for the Secret to Life when he wrote about the endless mysteries in his own experiences, and meditating on the long past.

An anthropoligist, an imaginative naturalist and a master of prose and poetry, Loren Eiseley fired my imagination and my searching soul.

"When the human mind exists in the
light of reason and no more than reason,
we may say with absolute certainty
that Man and all that made him
will be in that instant gone."  Loren Eiseley

From his Biographical Notes....

"Loren Corey Eiseley was born on Sept. 3, 1907, in Lincoln, Nebraska.  Eiseley learned much from his parents, both of whom were descendants of pioneers.  From his mother, Daisy Corey, an amateur artist, he gained an immense appreciation for the beauty of natural structures and creatures.  From his father, Clyde Edward Eiseley, once an itinerent Shakespeare actor, he acquired the sensitivity and expression of a poet.  In addition, the Plains environment in which he spent his childhood stimulated his interest in anthropology with its salt flats, ponds, and the mammoth bones and fossil collections of the Unversity of Nebraska museum.

Loren Eiseley died on July 9, 1977.

Eiseley described himself as "the fox that sits at the edge of the woods"....

He was admired by W.H. Auden, described as a modern day Thoreau, and yet the discoveries of recent times have dimmed his light somewhat.

Neverthless, as I run my hands along the shelves, looking for something to read, invariably I pause at Loren Eiseley - he writes of his wonderful natural philosophy with such eloquence."

There are many quotes, but the one that I continually marvel at concerns water, - the water that turns my stiff weaving, as it comes off the loom, into soft and luxurious fabric, -   magically changed by its immersion..

"If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water."


Friday, July 26, 2019

July 26th, 2019

I rise early this morning.

Five a.m. and already the morning light surprises my opening eyes.

It is still, - no breeze, but a  squirrel is stirring

the leaves of the elderberry outside

my bedroom window.

I consider another hour under the covers

but these morning hours are so contemplative

and the thoughts of coffee, and a quiet hour or two

before the day takes over

draws me from my bed.

I call to Bruce, who is as eager as I to start the day,

and he rushes down the hall and out into the back garden

his nails clicking on the floor, and Baby, his comfortable bear

in his mouth,

When he comes in we have a little conversation

about the dog groomer who is coming to pay him a business visit

today, and restore his orderly and gentleman appearance.

We are so pleased to have found a "traveling groomer"

as since I stopped driving he has missed going to see Jennifer

who in the past has attended to his doggy needs...

bath, a pedicure, shave and a haircut!!!!!

And he had become a most roguish dog, - his top knot

disorderly, and his hair long and shaggy.  And in need of a shampoo!!

But look at him now!!!!

Well, I didn't mean to just write about Bruce...

I spend the morning winding the rest of the towel warp

and beaming it on to the loom with the aid of two large heavy books

and a vinegar jar full of water, tied to the end of the warp

to provide the tension for winding it on the back beam.

Finished just as lunch time loomed

and the dog groomer arrived....

and here are the results of his visit!!!!!



We spent the afternoon outside in the shade, reading,

with a mister going beside the rocker, to cool the air....

Callie, and Bruce and me.






Monday, July 22, 2019

Monday, July 22nd, 2019

A Recharge Day

Well, that's how I like to think of it, anyway.

It gives the day some meaning

instead of it being a day during which I did

almost nothing!!!

I can remember those days

(very infrequent)

many years ago

when the children would be off to school

and Charles off about his own business

and I would do JUST NOTHING

except dream, and make plans, 

and look at recipes and home decor ideas.

And that's about how it was today!!

I made sure the birds were fed

and the plants watered,

and I did scrub up the fountain lady

who is inclined to get a slimey goo on her

from the water that flows from the flower at her shoulder.

Pristine when she first came to grace our garden

(a gift from our third son and his wife)

but not so much now, and I am looking for ways

to restore her back to her original pure condition.

Well, these lackadaisical days are not a total loss -

they are often an inspiration and a wonderful spirit charger!!!

I rearranged all my cotton, and lined up some beautiful blues

for a new warp to dress the newly naked loom

from which I took this puckered scarf.



And I laid out some knitting instructions

for children's mitten and toques

which I thought would make nice Christmas gifts.

The do-nothing mode has followed me into the evening

but I must go out, after a hot, hot afternoon

and check that everything will get through the night 

without getting thirsty.

Here is Callie, the Cat,

come to keep me company as she usually

does in the evening

when I am at the computer.

A welcome guest except when she

lays a paw on the keyboard

and the screen is full of

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

or  ssssssssssssssssssssss

So will she come out with me into the cool

of the evening garden?

If so, she will probably find a leafy spot

to lie in and won't come back

until it's treat time and we all get

ready for bed!

Tomorrow I am going to the library

to take back a DVD

"Bird Song".

(a sweet love story)

I need no books, having found in my mail box

a  wonderful shipment from the Thrift Store ----

Two  Loren Eiseley books

"The Star Thrower"  and "The Unexpected Universe"

and Nevil Shute's "A Town Called Alice"

All of them re-reads from the past

but books that meant so much to me in those

early years when the children were small

and I snatched time to read from those wonderful busy days!

on another note.......

Here is the Rose of Sharon

the star of the garden right now....





Thursday, July 18, 2019

July 18th, 2019
THE GARDEN DIARY

Well,  in order to make life simpler

which seems to be important, these days,

I have decided to incorporate

all these other blogs that I once journaled to

singularily,

as Sub-Daybyday posts,

and so.........

here are some pictures of the garden

as it slowly turns into a

beautiful jungle conglomeration

which Callie (the cat) is very passionate about....

there are so many places 

to burrow, and sleep, and hide....

not the least bit orderly,

just a lovely bit of heavenly greenery!!

























I must confess that these are mostly perennials

who pop up each year

to say "here we are - enjoy"

perfect for a 94 year old gardener!!!!



Saturday, July 13, 2019

Saturday, July 13th, 219

I  have been wandering the threads of the internet...

threads that connect me to people whom I have never met

and yet they seem like old friends

whose day by day, week by week or month by month blogs

I have been following for such a long time

that the writer's have gathered me into their circle of friends, -

and I them  -  albeit the friendships are somewhat restricted

in that we don't have tea and biscuits together!!!

The evening has cooled off quite nicely.

The last few days have been close and muggy

and in the afternoon I have closed the doors and turned the air on.

Tonight there is a bit of a breeze and the fresh night air is delightful.

This wonderful fresh night air

also blew my youngest son in to visit,

ad as always I was glad to see him, and had two questions

stored up to ask him.

 I am still reading Robert McFarlane's "Underland"

and finding it quite fascinating.

He is writing, amongst other things,

about caves, and about underground waterways,

both of which stirred my interest

and I was looking for confirmation of what

I remember about an icy cave on the far side of the valley,

up near the top of the mountain -  

one that Charles told me about, but it was only hearsay with him, too.

And I wanted to talk to our son about our early

years on the farm, when there was a waterfall

a little way up the hill above our acreage

and a stream that ran down the edge of the 

neighbouring veteran's land

which disappeared and ran underground for some time

before it reappeared and slid uder the culvert 

at the road edge.

Small boys  are more inclined to hear about such things

than are busy mothers with six children...

or at least they are a bit more intimate with 

the valley's land and waterways.

I did once visit the waterfall, and also the big flat rock

at the top of the adjoining hay field

where the children used to take sandwiches and cookies

for lunch.

There was a cave they used to tell me about,

just above our farm near the top of the hill,

but I didn't ever worm my way into it, -

It appears I led a very sheltered life.....

but what can you expect from a mother

with six wandering children!!

I enjoyed our visit - and now it is time to gather

up the dog and cat, give out bedtime treats

and lock the doors.

Bed beckons, with a sweet night's sleep


Saturday, July 06, 2019

Friday, July 5th,
2019

A rainy evening, and how lovely that is

the drops are splashing on the porch

and the door is wide open to catch that sweet scent of wet grass.

June was kind to us, rain wise

and July is starting off in the same generous fashion.

The last two years have seen  many wildfires throughout the province

and this year the dampness is so welcome!!

Of course the garden flourishes

and I am not continually running after sprinklers

and changing water.



If it is raining in the afteroon

I can also spend hours in the loom room

without feeling guilty about the weeds that are also green and flourishing.

I have a very large thistle  hiding in between the little lilac tree

and the enormous rhubarb leaves

and soon it will be out in beautiful lavender cones

(which I will harvest before they turn to seed)

But to get back to weaving...

I have warps on both looms - all threaded, sleyed and tied on

and ready to morph into scarves and runners - if it should keep raining.

I have been reading as well - two or three books, but the prime

is "Underland" by Robert McFarlane.

A fascinating book, about the earth, Under Land......

(A deep time journey)

All sorts of interesting things go on in that land

beneath our feet!!

Even at ninety four I am full of wonder.






Sunday, June 30, 2019

June 30th, 2019

And tomorrow is

 CANADA DAY



Charles and David raising the flag on the first of July,

probably some ten years ago



and I am reminded that I have forgotten to replace this flag

which grew tattered and torn over the years

it flew above the house

until I took it down last fall.

And now, alas, I have only the flag that covered

my loved one's coffin

to fly in its stead!

What to do???

And how could I have been so forgetful???

(the answer to that probably lies in my age, too much weaving, and a lot of gardening)

Well, I will go and ponder this problem!

No doubt, as the day dawns we will raise the flag 

in honour of the country

and in  sweet Remembrance!!!

p.s.


And of course you will remember
to pay proper homage
to the White Rabbit,

as July dawns,
bright and sunny.



Wednesday, June 26, 2019

June 26th, 2019

Wednesday evening, - the middle of the last week in June,

 and it's been such a lovely month.

We are catching up with rain showers, and mostly they happen at night, 

The plants and flowers get watered, and they are fresh and delightful 

for one to enjoy in the daytime.

A week ago there was not much in bloom

but suddenly the lilies have all opened their lovely petals



and the yellow daisies are in fierce competition

with the Shastas.





Out front the orange daylilies wave in the breeze

and do a great job hiding the fact

that the white picket fence is badly in need

of painting!!!

The Bee Balm toss their scarlet heads,




and soon the barn flowers will be wildly yellow.



Even now they have grown tall and bush so our privacy

is quite assured.

A mama deer has taken up residence with her little one

in the shrubs that line the creek on the other side

of the meadow.

We don't see her often, but it is a great pleasure

when we do!



When we get tired of weaving Callie and Bruce and I sit outside with a book

and a glass of lemonade.

We gather a small vase of the flowers Charles loved

to share beside him...

Bruce explores the garden, but Callie disappears into the greenery...

The other day I called her and she came out with a poor wee mouse in her mouth

so I guess she returns to the wild when she burrows....

Life is good!

Lavender scent is lovely...


I heard a nighthawk call last night...

The raspberries will soon be ready to gather for breakfast...

I am all ready to wind a new warp...

I waken at five, - ready for a new day (tho' I bury myself in the blankets until six!)

I see my children often, and lovingly....

Life is good.  

 (oh, have I said that already???)


Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Tuesday, June 18th, 2019



My eyes close as I finish reading

Chris Arthur's fine essay upon his father's calf skin brief case



 (to be found in The Shoreline of Knowledge)



and I muse on his observation that

"it is enough to realize that every common object in this small sunny room

will outlive me - the mirror, radio, bookstand and rocker"

And my husband's calf skin briefcase....

Arthur 's essay is entitled

'Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Briefcase" 

and his insight and wonderful expressiveness leave me wondering at 

"the images of the history of humanity in which we're all enmeshed"




At one time I had all of Chris Arthur's "Irish" books, - the Nocturne, the Willow, the Haiku 

and the Elegy, but gradually, over the years. I have dispersed them

amongst  our children in the hope that they will be blessed by his imagination

and the creative path it follows.

Now, of course, as my shelf life has been extended into the 10th decade,

I want them all back, to read again.!!!!

This copy of "The Shoreline of Knowledge" which I am now reading

came into my possession through "Thrift Books"

A great place to explore, and if you're lucky,  to find such treasures

(as this book is) and so many other children and adult books

long out of print and difficult to obtain through modern sellers.

Of course, the fact that I am replacing these books that I once gave away

is doing nothing for my determination to clear the shelves.

Instead I am buying books like "The Digital Undertaker" and

"Lasting Words" - books that are more in keeping with my present

spot in life.  I am reading C.S. Lewis and Thomas Merton instead of Joanna Trollope

What I need is a good rollicking book by Erma Bombeck or Alexanxder

McCall Smith, - something along the lines of "Candles and Cake".

Before I go along the hallway to the Loom Room and my weaving

I get out my husband's calf skin briefcase and think of all the papers

it has held in his long life of devoted community service -- the establishment of

Okanagan College, Agricultural and Sheep Breeder's papers, things pertaining to his

work with Air Cadets and Education and I think what a fine, generous man he was

and how this calfskin briefcase is such a worthy symbol of his leadership and integrity.

And I think about how lucky I was that Easter Sunday to have gone walking with a friend

by the North Saskachewan River, slowing down so that I could have the pleasure of

his company for the rest of his beloved life!!!


Friday, June 14, 2019

Friday morning.....
June 14th, 2019


The Garden is in transition these days...

The tulips and daffodils are just a fond memory

and the pink and scarlet peony petals have shattered, -

dry and crushed, although still reminiscent of their beauty.





I strolled a bit through the garden this morning...

Bruce was with me when we started, but he soon

found exciting smells to investigate and

was burrowing amongst the jungle of phlox

and herbs!

Soon he found a blanket to rest on and contemplate!



Callie just found a spot to lie down where it was cool!!




The day lilies, the flax and the magnificent and regal lilies 

are starting to bloom








 The great cabbage pink roses have a 

scattering of  rosy pennies around their feet, and the last of the blue


delphinium growing through their branches.

Though these lovely Monet colours remain as accents

the main body of the garden is turning to

summer yellow!!!!






Soon the barn flowers will line the back fence with gold

and the bee balm will burst into a circle of scarlet and royal purple.






Asters and white daisies - the heritage sweetpeas which I find

have burrowed their way throughout the garden......and the rudbeckia..

lovely shades of yellow.

To say nothing of the sun flowers that are reaching up the fence

to shine on people going down the lane!




It is a small garden, compared to the ones that Charles and I tended

over the years, but a precious place to relax sometimes,

and sometimes to bestow lovely rich earth under the fingernails!!

(Alas, it is also the source of many an evening's back ache!!!)

Endured with the pleasure of gardening!!!