Tuesday, November 11, 2008

surreal good

Plastic hedges for sale in New York City.

The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made.
Groucho Marx

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Made for Loving

"We are made for loving. If we don’t love, we'll be like plants without water."

Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


You can easily judge the character of a man by how he treats those who can do nothing for him.

--Malcolm Forbes

Monday, September 29, 2008


All men by nature desire knowledge.-- Aristotle

When I saw this little desk in the middle of toys I thought of how we are taught routines in school and possibly lose some of our ability to easily adapt, then we have to go out and get our street smarts little by little. How important those street smarts are.

Not long ago I heard that learning something new helps keep your brain from aging quickly, and can actually be part of that fountain of youth we are all eating our greens for. It doesn't work at all if you know a lot about US Presidents, and think "Hey, I'll learn something new--I'll study all of the first ladies." that would do nothing to make your brain wake up and be sharper. Or if you play piano and decide to take up the tuba. It has to be an area you've displayed no interest in, something to challenge your brain. I haven't decided what to choose yet, but I'm going to spend this winter learning some new things. I need all the help I can get. I don't know a thing about a whole lot of subjects, so I have a lot of choices. Maybe I'll finally learn the metric system.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


One who understands much displays a greater simplicity of character than one who understands little.
-- Alexander Chase

Monday, September 15, 2008


“Childhood is a short season.” ~Helen Hayes

Saturday, September 6, 2008


All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.


Thursday, September 4, 2008

Communication Hands

Just about everyone makes hand gestures to get an idea across or without even thinking about it, much. Hands are so important when it comes to communication as well as in religious practice with beads, candles, and symbolic gestures. Hands can be beautiful or they can upset you, pointing at you in an unfriendly way.

The shaking fist, the language of the deaf, the slipping on of a ring, waving hello, saying come over here, making the sign of peace.

Friday, August 29, 2008


When I took this picture, I thought that little spot where there is no shadow represents the Now. The past is behind the chain link and the future is down the road, so no point in dwelling in or worrying about them. .

Wise men have been talking about this forever it seems. No use predicting sadness or looking back in anger.

Never let the future disturb you. You will meet it, if you have to, with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present. ~Marcus Aurelius Antoninus

With the past, I have nothing to do; nor with the future.  I live now.  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

I tell you the past is a bucket of ashes.  ~Carl Sandburg

I never think of the future.  It comes soon enough. ~Albert Einstein

The living moment is everything.  ~D.H. Lawrence

I have realized that the past and future are real illusions, that they exist in the present,
which is what there is and all there is. 
~Alan Watts

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Lime Wheel

Theme Thursday: Wheel.

Limerence :
Psychology; the state of being infatuated or obsessed with another person.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Sky Watch Friday

Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved. --Helen Keller

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

"I cannot tell you any spiritual truth that deep within you don't know already.
All I can do is remind you of what you have forgotten"

Sunday, August 17, 2008

The Green House

Someone told me that the English language is the only Latin Based language where we can say that's the greenhouse, that's the green house, or that's the Green house and the listener will know by our inflection if we are talking about a glass house, a house with green siding or a house where the Green family resides. I don't know if this is true or not,(if English is the only language where this occurs) Where inflection must be used to distinguish one meaning from another... but I found it interesting.

"I feel that if a person has problems communicating the very least he can do is to shut up."
Tom Lehrer

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Sky Watch Friday

People begin to gather for a concert under the sky.

(Click photo to enlarge)

See all the Sky Watch posts here:

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

What's the Significance?

I hike a lot, and try to notice plants and birds and rocks and things, but this potato masher lying in the path way out in the middle of nowhere was a find. I have a friend, Mystical Mike, who would have stopped and meditated on the significance of the potato masher. He would have seen it as a sign (of something.)

I did briefly wonder what a potato masher was doing all by itself so far from home, but soon discovered as I rounded a bend that someone had thrown the entire contents of a typical kitchen into the path. It reminded me of this Thomas Edison quote: "To invent, you need a good imagination and a pile of junk."

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Friends Like Brothers

"Friendship is precious, not only in the shade, but in the sunshine of life."

Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, August 7, 2008


Some steps are not for getting anywhere anymore. Some steps are just for sitting on and watching the world go past. This is the same as stopping to smell the roses I guess.

This is for Kim's Theme Thursday.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Life is not a spectacle or a feast; it is a predicament.


Thursday, July 31, 2008

And I Still Don't Know

When I saw this shirt I thought of how Cynthesis said we're sometimes enigmas to ourselves.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

But You Have to Want It Enough to Work at It

You can have peace of mind, improved health and an ever-increasing flow of energy. Life can be full of joy and satisfaction.

~ Norman Vincent Peale

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Approaching a Friend's Door

I feel joy when I approach my dear friend's door. This house belonged to her grannie, and she grew up here. We don't need to talk much, just catch up on grandkids and family news, then lapse into comfortable, companionable silence. Approaching her door fills me with a quiet, deep happiness, just knowing she is on the other side.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Letting Go

We need in love to practice only this: letting each other go.
For holding on comes easily--we do not need to learn it.

-Rainer Maria Rilke

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Coming Home

"No one realizes how beautiful it is to travel until he comes home and rests his head on his old, familiar pillow."

-- Lin Yutang

Monday, July 7, 2008


Take the world as it is, not as it ought to be.
--Old Proverb

They that will not apply new remedies must expect new evils.
--Francis Bacon

Friday, July 4, 2008


there were baby birds in this nest, robins perhaps. not wanting to get too close, hoping they've survived several nasty storms, hoping they'll be flying around by the time we return.

Hope is the dream of the waking man.
-- Aristotle

Thursday, July 3, 2008

The Wolverine

Here is a page from an old turn of the century natural history text book.

Today's theme is shoes, and so I choose *Wolverine made in USA workboots as my footwear of choice. Wolverine supports the Wolverine Foundation, a wildlife group.

* Not all Wolverine products are made in USA so check if you are boycotting China.

Monday, June 30, 2008

We are shaped by our thoughts. We become what we think.

-- Buddha

Monday, June 23, 2008

For George

Cloud nine gets all the publicity, but cloud eight actually is cheaper, less crowded, and has a better view.
~George Carlin

Sunday, June 22, 2008

We are too busy mopping the floor to turn off the faucet.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Big Sky

The sky is the daily bread of the eyes.

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

I believe in God, only I spell it Nature.
Frank Lloyd Wright

Friday, June 13, 2008

We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.

George Bernard Shaw

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Old Interstate Bridge

In 1906 A steamer slammed into this bridge, the captain thinking the swing arm was going to open. (it was always slow to open.) The bridge operator was dozing and failed to notice the first signals. The waterway was blocked for days, stranding many boats.
It took 2 years to repair the bridge, but in the 1970's it was dismantled after a new bridge was built. A section of the bridge was left standing and a fishing platform made on it.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Bridges, A Day Early

Tomorrow is the Theme Day for Bridges, but I wanted to show this postcard image today, and another tomorrow.

“The wise man bridges the gap by laying out the path by means of which he can get from where he is to where he wants to go.”
J. P.Morgan

Dream it, and you can do it, is your outline, your business plan if you prefer, to reach your goal. You have to be able to see it, to let yourself see it, dream it. Don't discourage yourself.

This is the aerial ferry bridge, a very unusual bridge and a landmark in Duluth.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Thriving While Dying

I've been watching this tree for a few years now, as half of its top branches have shown no life at all. The bugs and woodpeckers have moved in en masse,and started eating it away. Last summer the tree seemed to give up, and produced no leaves at all. We felt bad, assumed it was a goner, and started talking about taking the top off of it, or total removal, since it's close to the road and an outbuilding. This spring the tree sprouted leaves on half its branches and is trying to look as though it's thriving. Getting energy from its roots after a year of rest I suppose. Meanwhile I look at the intense damage the bugs have done to the lower trunk and to the upper branches. There is no way the tree can be saved, but it's decided to live its last seasons to the fullest I guess. Mighty Oak to the end.

(Click to enlarge)

Sunday, June 8, 2008

A Birthday Wish

Rumors have been swirling around the Blogosphere that Kurt celebrated a birthday this weekend. I don't know if this is true or not, since other people told me he wasn't due until August! So just in case, we threw a party anyway.

What I wouldn't give to be seventy again! - Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana. - Groucho Marx

Saturday, June 7, 2008


Be mild with the mild, shrewd with the crafty, confiding to the honest, rough to the ruffian, and a thunderbolt to the liar. But in all this, never be unmindful of your own dignity.

John Brown

I don't need to tell you what the original graffiti was. The overuse of profanity makes the user's true unkind and very pitiable self shine through. A little profanity is totally necessary in this world, though.

On the bright side, this gentleman passed by while I was standing around. I heard him long before I saw him, first a distant hum and then by degrees I could make out the melody and the words of a hymn of praise. He had a beautiful voice and was singing his way across town. I followed him for many blocks, listening to him sing.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Keep Close to Nature's Heart

Keep close to Nature's heart... and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean."

John Muir

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Wednesday, June 4, 2008


Nobody has ever before asked the nuclear family to live all by itself in a box the way we do. With no relatives, no support, we've put it in an impossible situation.

Margaret Mead

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Toast, Coffee, & the Sunday Papers

Home. No matter where I am there are certain things I bring along. My toast, coffee, and the Sunday papers. Sometimes in a remote locale, you may end up reading a Sunday paper from a month of Sundays ago, but that's Okay, as long as the bread and coffee are fresh enough and and hot enough.

Home. With a rural home comes big responsibilities. You want to keep the trees healthy, you need to walk your land often. People will come onto your land and dump old mattresses, appliances, and occasionally an old car. You need to have the patience and the ability to remove the trash that people will dump. You need to keep the woods clean and the wildflowers growing.

Monday, June 2, 2008


I know why the caged bird sings, ah me,
When his wing is bruised and his bosom sore,--
When he beats his bars and he would be free;
It is not a carol of joy or glee,
But a prayer that he sends from his heart's deep core,
But a plea, that upward to Heaven he flings--
I know why the caged bird sings.

Paul Laurence Dunbar

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Energy & Persistence

"Energy and persistence conquer all things."
- Benjamin Franklin

I find I can't overcome obstacles unless I have the energy, and I don't have the energy unless I keep fit, get some fresh air, and eat right. This viola got stepped on I don't know how many times, and underneath the stone it grows in sandy soil. It gets enough minerals, water and sunshine though, and it blossomed just as nicely as its kin that live in a comfy garden bed.

Thursday, May 29, 2008


The heart will break, but broken live on.
Lord Byron

Monday, May 26, 2008


Will the owner of the yellow and orange plastic car, license number 5, please move your vehicle? You are blocking others. Thank you.

Sunday, May 25, 2008


Our consciousness rarely registers the beginning of a growth within us any more than without us; there have been many circulations of the sap before we detect the smallest sign of the bud.
~ George Eliot

This is an area where we've been tossing birdseed every day or so for years. Mixed blends from those big 30 lb. bags. There's water and food for the songbirds in this small shady area, and many seeds sprout-- we always notice some type of annoying grassy weed that we have to uproot. Now this flower sprouted in the spot. A random seed, unknown. I don't know what kind of flower this is, but it seemed to just suddenly appear while I wasn't paying attention.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

No Limit

There is no security on this earth, there is only opportunity.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Green Flowers

The green flowers that blossom every year on common trees like oaks, maples, and the poplar, (shown here) are among my favorite blossoms.

Nature does nothing uselessly.


Wednesday, March 26, 2008