Thursday, April 18, 2019

Golden Hour in the 'hood; TBT

So nice to be back to Golden Hour days!

Instead of nodding off on the couch during the hour after the news, I've been nodding off during the news.   

Have a feeling that today will present excellent reasons for extended nod-offs. 

That's okay because we have re-entered the part of the year where there's no need to rely on the TV in the evening. 

We can go outside, and the Golden Hour outside has returned.  

As I've mentioned in past posts when the sun is shining and the grass turns green and daylight starts lasting until 8 p.m., we who love photography can happily indulge on the great outdoors.  

And, the great part for me is living in Selle.  I don't have to go very far at all to find exquisite beauty brought on by evening sunlight, flourishing plant and animal life. 

It's like Christmas for photographers, and in some cases, like the first photo in today's post, it's truly a golden and magical time of the day. 

During this time of the year, we can point our cameras virtually any direction and find isolated scenes---weeks ago covered up with snow or downright dull---which now dazzle the eyes with their simple but vibrant beauty. 

Within these scenes, we may even be lucky enough to see a pair of wood ducks or some wildlife or birds or neighborhood horses or even new faces of humans we've never seen before. 

I left the house for about 45 minutes last night, driving and stopping during my five-mile round trip in the neighborhood.  

Upon returning home, I could tell Bill about some lovely new friends I met, Denise and Hayden and their dog Lily. 

The trio was out enjoying their own golden hour.

One never knows what treasures will come during the magical "golden hour," and that possibility alone is what makes it such a beautiful gift on each sunny day of spring and summer. 

Throwback Thursday:  A Special Easter, 2013

With Easter coming up this weekend, I went back to an album from 2013, which began with a very special excursion with our mother.  

We took her to the Colburn farm to see the horses.  Scout was chosen as the equine ambassador that Sunday.  He represented the herd well. 

Mother was pleased. 

Later that day, my sisters, five dogs, Bill and I made the trip to the Fish and Game property along Boundary Creek across from Porthill (U.S.-Canada border crossing). 

We enjoyed a lovely day all by ourselves and with plenty of room for dogs to play. 

Our beloved Kea is no longer with us, nor is our beloved mother.  

So, TBT's like today are more special than ever as we remember the good times.

It was a wonderful way to spend an Easter day.  

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Selle Critter Sights and Horsin' in a Round Pen

These are not chickens that crossed the road. 

These are not chickens who like a coop. 

Moreover, these are not range chickens.

These ARE Grange chickens. 

The Selle Grange is no longer officially a grange. 

Since its grange days, the place and its grounds near the railroad track in downtown Selle has functioned as a lovely events center (complete with chandeliers).

For a time, when passing by we'd see a few cars in the parking lot belonging to church goers. 

The church people occupied the building for a couple of years and then the congregation went elsewhere. 

Soon, we learned that an individual had purchased the former grange to have as her home. 

She's a nice lady named Karen who's also a florist. 

Since Karen moved in and converted the building into her full-fledged residence, four dogs and four cats have kept her company. 

Karen told me yesterday that these are not her chickens, but she has named one and does feed them. 

I'm pretty sure that the chickens do not have to cross the road for their handouts.  

I believe they live at the farm next door. Someone can correct me if that assumption is in error.

The main thing for me is that yesterday is the very first time ever that I have seen chickens foraging for food at the grange entrance. 

So, it was worth a shot.

Plus, it led to a nice visit with the nice owner of the old Selle Grange, who sez this is the best move she's ever made.  

Chickens and all! 

Like my former student and friend Darlene Sawyer, I suffer from a springtime addiction:  the need to keep going to a nursery to buy colorful flowers. 

So, my purpose in driving past the old Selle Grange yesterday was to go to the Flower Farm at the end of Selle Road and grab a good supply of African daisies along with a few pansies (to feed my spring-color floral addiction). 

Darlene was there, admitting to the same problem.  We enjoyed a nice visit.  

Darlene, with her box filled with nice supply of primroses and pansies started toward her car, telling me she'd better not even walk into those other greenhouses or she'd spend a lot more money. 

I compared it to my weakness when seeing Border Collie puppies.  I have to stay away from them, or I'll spend a lot more money. 

Guess it's truly a junkie situation but pretty harmless and happily colorful in both cases. 

Anyway, on my way home, I drove around the Forest Siding roads, and just as I came to turn on  to South Center Valley Road, a group of Hereford calves was convening at the fence line. 

Moms were there too.  It was a colorful scene which was pretty enough, even without pansies or primroses.  

I'll have to say once more that Jack and Colleen have the most uniform, best looking bunch of calves I can ever remember seeing in their pasture. 

Once I pulled into our driveway, I could see some wild action out in the round pen. 

It definitely needed some camera attention, so I grabbed the camera and headed that direction.

To say the horses were feeling their oats AND their freedom from hoof-sucking mud would be an understatement.

They were just plain wild AND crazy horses, and it was fun to watch them feeling so good and putting on such dramatic acts of equine flamboyance.  

Iz there such a thing? 

Fun times in the neighborhood as the daffodils are about to burst open and the grass is turning deeper shades of green.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Of Smoke, Selle and Seoul . . . .

Of Selle . . . .

It was supposed to be a brief sit-down moment with a bite of cheese for lunch, but it ended up lasting for more than an hour. 

My standard policy for most days is to work outside for at least a couple of hours and then come in for a break.

In late morning, that break involves nibbling on a chunk of cheddar and a getting a peek into the news.  

At our house, we tend to watch the "Fake News" channel during the day, which, most of the time has pretty much the same news I read and see on most other media. 

So, I'm assuming that when we saw the first footage of smoke coming from the top of the Cathedral of Notre Dame, others were seeing the same horrifying image on other channels, billions of others, in fact. 

Regardless of which medium told us about the monumental tragedy in Paris, pretty much all of us around the world lament the loss of religious history and magnificent iconic beauty.  

There's good news this morning that two French billionaires are putting up hundreds of millions of dollars to see that the worldwide structure which attracts 13 million visitors annually is repaired. 

Twas also good news to learn that some treasures within, including the organ and stain-glassed windows were saved, as was a good portion of the structure. 

In the moment that turned into an hour's worth of watching hundreds of years of history evaporating in flames, I could hardly wrap my arms around the concept of all the major historical events that have happened in this world while the structure rose and stood for more than 800 years. 

To use "monumental" seems almost insufficient, when we think of the Middle Ages and the French Revolution and the world wars and so much more. 

After more than 800 years of standing strong during worldwide struggles, a major portion of the church disintegrated in about an hour as people around the world watched on their TVs or via the Internet. 

During this time, I texted with a few friends and family who had visited Notre Dame Cathedral. 

"It was my favorite place in Paris," texted my daughter-in-law Debbie.  She visited a few years ago with her friend Alicia and said they spent more time there than any other Parisian icon. 

My friend Chris, who studied for a year in Paris, simply sent back a sad-face icon. 

Much is lost, but from the news, both fake and real, it's wonderful news to learn that the building will some day return to its magnificence, thanks to prayers, to determination and to generosity given with love. 

Meanwhile, even though I did spend too much time sitting on the couch watching the French disaster yesterday, I tried to make up for it later in a day that seemed very transitional as we move on from yuck yuck wet, to yes, yes, sunshine and spring are a-comin!

Horses enjoyed their day out in the round pen, out of the mud, and Liam was a pretty good pup, spending most of his day in his dog run with Foster.  

Kiwi enjoyed free run of the place and occasionally trotted over to the dog run, flaunting her freedom to her two friends.

With dogs and Bill in the house after dinner, I even felt a little tinge of freedom, taking off on foot across the north lawn and down South Center Valley Road.

 Our road is still dotted with bulging winter zits rising from the surface.  With luck, a grader will come by and smooth those out.

For now, they serve as very efficient speed bumps. 

It felt good to get back to my evening walks through the neighborhood.  

As I passed one house, I saw its occupants outside with their rakes, collecting winter riffraff for a bonfire which was putting up some smoke. 

Off in the distance, I saw a rider coming home from an evening of plodding down the road on her horse.  

Later, when I returned, Bill practiced some walking with his crutches in the front yard, where, though soggy, it's drying up.

He's doing more every day, and has just one week of "50 percent weight" on that foot before advancing to 100 percent. 

I'm sure it's probably okay if he cheats once in a while. 

I won't tell. 

Spring is coming. Moods are improving. 

Soon, along with that, will come more and more outdoor work, but, for the most part, it's all good.  

Of Seoul . . . .with Annie

Hard to believe that the world traveler is on her way home to Seattle from her latest adventure and that in three days she'll be back here at the Lovestead to share her stories. 

I don't know how this trip ranks with her two Camino journeys or her visits Down Under or all those trips to various European countries or to Japan, but I'm guessing it was a favorite. 

Talk about a full dose of embracing new cultures in three different countries in a region she had never visited.

It's been fun seeing the images.  Now, it will be fun hearing the stories.  

Photos below were taken earlier today/yesterday in Seoul, South Korea. 

Actually today is lasting a long, long time for Annie who started today about 3 p.m. yesterday afternoon. 

I have a feeling she won't be Sleepless in Seattle tonight. 


Welcome home, Annie, and thanks for sharing.