Tag Archives: Mother Nature

Tornado Warnings Expired

science – HowStuffWorks

We’ve had a very interesting late evening here in Greenwood, Arkansas.  We were watching TV and our weather alert started making all kinds of noise in the office. I discovered we were under a tornado warning – not watch – until 11:58 pm.

I’ve told you before that my husband and I are complete opposites. I tend to get nervous when ‘tornado warning,’ ‘Fort Smith,’ and ‘Greenwood’ are all mentioned at the same time by the weather alert thingie. My husband scoffs and wants to go outside on the deck and watch the storm come in. We’ve learned to compromise over the years. I try not to freak out. He tries not to make fun of me. We take care of our animals and listen to the local TV station and stay alert until the danger – or at least most of it – passes.

The warnings have been cancelled. Whew. We had lots of lightning. We haven’t had any rain yet, but I expect a lot of it over night. The TV guys were talking about two areas of rotation reasonably close to us. One seemed to touch down in a rural area in southeastern Oklahoma, right over the state line from us. It was moving in a northeast direction, and the cone of possible travel seemed to skirt past us to the west. Then they added rotation in the Fort Smith area. I don’t think anything happened in Fort Smith, other than hail. That was happening in Oklahoma, too. In fact, they showed a piece of hail that had a measuring tape beside it – measuring 4 inches long!

We’re still under a flash flood warning through Sunday, with 5 to 8 inches of rain forecast by Sunday. That’s a LOT of rain. We have several rivers and creeks that go through the area, and a lot of those won’t crest until Monday or so.

We’ll just keep all appendages crossed that everyone comes through this weekend all right.

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Filed under Arkansas, Greenwood, Mother Nature

Rain, Rain…



Friday: Potentially severe storms along the warm front after dark; Hail primary threat; tornadoes possible.

WEATHER ALERT DAY SATURDAYExtensive Flash Flooding 5-8″ of rain likely.

Sunday: Rain ends, cooler. River flooding remains possible.


SO – we may need a boat before this is over. We live on top of a ridge line, so we don’t have to worry about flooding in the house or the shop. We may have a lot of flooding in Greenwood and Fort Smith, though, with Arkansas River flooding, plus flooding from lots of other smaller rivers throughout the state. Spring is usually rainy, but this is a little much.  Our biggest danger up here is tornadoes. I’ve lived in Oklahoma and Arkansas (aka ‘Tornado Alley’) for most of my life and I’ve never actually seen a tornado. I’ll be delighted if this remains true the rest of my life.

The saddest thing is that the worst day for the rain is supposed to be tomorrow, when the 30th annual car show is scheduled on Greenwood’s square. It’s a fun event, with lots of people coming from all around to show the great work they’ve done on their cars, with some of the cars from the 1920s. They provide a fun day for lots of people, and then give a check to the city to use for community projects. I’m hoping that either the forecasters have misread their maps, or that the car show can be rescheduled.

Meanwhile, all has been planted and will appreciate the rain (I hope!) I’m a bit worried that my garden plants will get hailed on again. All appendages crossed that we’ll ONLY get the rain…


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Filed under Arkansas, Greenwood, Mother Nature

Playing in the Rain

In Lieu of Preschool


The 80% chance of rain started in early this morning, with dark clouds, wind, rain, and an almost 20 degree drop in temperatures. It only sprinkled on us as my husband and I got the mail, enjoyed our friends at Lunch Bunch, and did a few errands before coming home and starting a comfort beef stew in the crock pot for tonight.

The rain came again as we were settling in. Perfect timing! The forecasters are saying we could get 3 to 5 inches of rain by noon or so tomorrow. We may need a boat! Usually, when we have a good, wet spring, we have a long period of NO rain for a couple of months of the summer, so I’m enjoying every drop we’re getting now.

My husband has come up with a new project –

He ordered a Blu-Ray DVD reader we received today. He wants it to read his collection of DVDs, storing each movie in a special storage drive.  When each has been stored, we’ll sell the DVD. This will eventually free up a lot of our shelving in our entertainment center. He’s started moving stuff around in the office as I type. This rainy day is a good time to get started on the project. I hope he’s happy with the results. My part in this is to add to his spreadsheet of his movies, listing main actor/actress, plus a short synopsis of the movie.

I hope that you have a fun day planned. Stay dry, my friends.


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“Sweet Stream”

“Sweet Stream Wash Me Down” – Paul Militaru Photography

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“A Little Purple – Magnolias”

“A Little Purple – Magnolias” – Paul Militaru Photography

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“Let’s Get to the Bottom of Things”

“Let’s Get to the Bottom of Things” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Praise of the Yellow Iris

I posted some pics of the beautiful yellow iris we bought from Nanna’s Garden in Clarksville, AR. It had two beautiful blooms on it and two buds. This was several days ago.

I walked into the kitchen this morning and it took my breath away. I cut off one bloom, but –


I can’t believe it’s still blooming, when all our other iris only last a day or two, PLUS the buds bloomed! I can’t say enough about the quality of the iris we got from this lady. I think she grows and sells 1700 different iris. I didn’t even know there WERE that many different colors of iris!


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“White Tree Flowers”

“White Tree Flowers 2” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Trip Around the Yard

My husband has three clematis plants he’s trying to nurture. This year they seem to be happy. Were walking around the yard this morning and found these.


Our purple iris are still blooming nicely in clumps around the yard while yellow iris are just now starting to bloom.


These are growing down one side of the driveway. There are a couple more ‘drifts’ further on down, but this is the main one.


This is one of our Rio Samba rose bushes. I cut them back harshly this past year because of various problems. I didn’t know whether they would live through my efforts or not. One of them didn’t, but two of them did.




And the pale yellow iris have started.

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“Yellow Roses”

Roses on Facebook

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“Pink Tree Flowers 1”

“Pink Tree Flowers 1”- Paul Militaru Photography

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“Spring Has Finally Come 2”

“Spring Has Finally Come 2” – Paul Militaru Photography

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“Waterfall” – Paul Militaru Photography

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“Delicate White Beauty”

“Delicate White Beauty” – Paul Militaru Photography

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“Dillon Reservoir Wildlife Area 2”

“Dillon Reservoir Wildlife Area 2” – Sergio Dardon

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“Hyacinth” – Paul Militaru Photography

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“Dillon Reservoir Wildlife Area 1”

“Dillon Reservoir Wildlife Area 1” – Sergio Dardon

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“Yellow Tulips 1”

“Yellow Tulips 1” – Paul Militaru Photography

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“Birds Flying”

“Birds Flying” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Sharing Spring – Take 2

I feel sorry that so many people I know – and even more I don’t know – are having snow and even blizzards this week. My heart goes out to them, even though they might be more used to what I call ‘bad weather,’ and not consider the current weather a huge deal, as I would.  I hope that the blizzard doesn’t cause too much havoc.

Here in Greenwood, Arkansas, I’m like a kid at Christmas, anticipating real spring. We’re having a good taste of it, and for that I’m truly grateful.  I just checked on the garden and it’s still doing well, thank goodness. With these overnight freezes, it’s one day at a time around here.

On the inside, I can’t lay down my well-earned moniker, “Serial Seed Killer,” yet, though here is the latest batch of spinach sprouted from seed. These are in pots made of peat, filled with Mel’s Mix, so if they live, I’ll plant them, pots and all, intact, in the garden. Maybe I can add, “Persistent Planter” to my moniker? My husband describes my efforts as, “Even a dead hog finds an acorn now and then.” :0/


Also on my window sill is the orchid my good friend, Nora, gave me a couple or three years ago now. I’ve thought it was dead a couple of times, but kept watering it and keeping it in the sun. Lately it bloomed!



Meanwhile, things are beginning to green up around here.




Everywhere I look, I see something sprouting. I LOVE this time of year!

Hopefully, once this ‘last gasp’ of winter is over, we can ALL think happy thoughts of renewal.

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Filed under Arkansas, Encouragement, Gardening, Greenwood, Mother Nature

“Spring Flowers 1”

“Spring Flowers 1” – Paul Militaru Photography

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“Ornamental Flowers 5”

“Ornamental Flowers 5” – Paul Militaru Photography

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“Aquamarine Hyacinth”

“Aquamarine Hyacinth” – Paul Militaru Photography

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“Yellow Begonia’

“Yellow Begonia” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Hooray! It’s Raining!

Heflin - Open Image Studio

Heflin – Open Image Studio

It’s 43 degrees, gray, and raining. Just beautiful!

We have been flirting with getting rain for several weeks now. It always bypassed us, and we need rain badly. Today I woke up to lots of wonderful rain!

The dogs were not as appreciative as I shooed them out the door to take care of business. I’ve done that several times today, since they stay out approximately 30 seconds and then start barking to get back in. :0)

I took my umbrella and walked around it in a bit. Our yard is really soaked – something it really needed.

When this dries up a bit – maybe tomorrow or the next day – I’ll spread the “Weed and Feed” granules we got from Yeagers. I’ll also spread more grass seed, as the moles, voles, and other ‘oles’ have tunneled all over the place dislodging our nice grass and making a mess.

I hope the weather in your part of the world is to your liking today.

I wish I had some cute boots like the little girl in the pictures….

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Filed under Acting Like a Grownup, Childlike Fun, Mother Nature

Snow Day


This is my new hat, purchased at the hardware store yesterday, and worn with pleasure today, while putting new suet and feed in one of the bird feeders on the deck this morning.  I’m also thankful for my new boots with Thinsulate and rubber on the soles and toe. It’s 17 degrees in Greenwood, Arkansas right now. High is supposed to be 25, with 11 tomorrow morning. The public schools are closed, due to road conditions.



Happily, we don’t have to negotiate the bad roads to get to work! We got 2 – 3 inches of snow overnight. It’s not supposed to melt during the day, though it IS melting a bit on our sidewalks and driveway pad, due to the fact the temperatures didn’t plunge until a couple of days ago.



My husband said we could make it to Lunch Bunch, but I enjoy the option of not having to drive in it, unless we have to. When I called one of my Lunch Bunch friends, she said that she and our other friend didn’t want to get out in it, either.



Our son, who lives and works in Thailand now, asked me to take pics if it snowed so he could show them to his Thai pals, knowing they’ll be amazed. He said, “Thai people are bundled up against this ARCTIC BLASTWAVE, temperatures PLUNGING, sometimes the daily high is NOT EVEN 80°.” :0)






I’ve enjoyed walking around (carefully) in it today. I’ll probably go out again this afternoon to appreciate the crisp, cold air, the slight breeze, the hint of sunshine, and the fact that I can come back into a warm, dry house when I’m finished appreciating Mother Nature.




I’ve switched gears to working from my INSIDE list today, happy I can practice my yoga in the comfort of my living room this afternoon.



This is a complex of three (I think) evergreens that are a boarding house for MANY birds. A bunch of them are already enjoying the black oil sunflower seeds and two fresh packets of suet I put out for them.



Smoke wishes you a HAPPY WINTER!


Filed under Arkansas, Mother Nature

Wonderful Birds


“Seagull” – Paul Militaru Photography




“Two Souls – A Destiny” – Paul Militaru Photography




“White Lady and Little Stars” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Filed under Amazing Animals, Mother Nature, Paul Militaru Photography

1st Day of Winter 2016

What's On

What’s On

Today is the 1st day of winter.  I like to think of winter in abstract terms: hot chocolate, fires in the fireplace, warm boots, hats, scarves, mittens – plus snow angels, snowmen, great big fluffy flakes falling like you’re in the middle of a snow globe. Sledding down our driveway with my son in the front, laughing with glee, his hands in the air….

Reality is that in Arkansas, winter isn’t done well. We almost always have ice first, then snow, then more ice. Tree limbs snap as I stand on the porch. Huge limbs fall into the driveway, causing my husband and I to have to use the chain saw to clear the driveway before we can get out. One year we had so much ice that the public water stopped. We were stuck on top of our ridge line with well water. We had no public power, so we started our Chinese diesel generator. The generator overheated, so my husband and son had to put 40 gallon barrels on saw horses and fill them with water in order to keep the generator cool enough to work. We had to monitor it every 30 minutes, day and night. This went on for 14 days.

Since then, we bought a new propane-powered generator that turns itself on when the power goes out, and turns itself off when the public power is again available. We haven’t lost public water since that awful year about 10 years ago. Last year we were proactive, hiring a man to cut down trees on either side of the driveway that might fall in another ice storm. We had enough snow and ice that all the evergreen trees bent over into the driveway, making it impossible to get down. We had to wait until we could cut down a bunch of the evergreens and haul them to one side in order to get out.

We do have snow tires on our truck which make it possible for us to go down – and come up again – unless we get a bunch of ice. Then we just stay home until the ice melts.

Thank goodness that Arkansas is not a state known for getting lots of snow in the winter!

I still enjoy making snow angels and making snowmen. I still enjoy big, fluffy flakes of snow, feeling as if I’m in the middle of my own, private snow globe.

I love pretty pictures of snow ELSEWHERE, and I LOVE the creative snowmen people make.

The main thing I like about winter is that it doesn’t last forever. It’s a chance for me to get some stuff done inside. I might actually have time to get up and play in my art room! I can plan what I’ll plant and in what squares in our new raised bed square foot garden in the spring.

Hot chocolate (no sugar added) and fires in the fireplace are things I can look forward to.

Have a great winter, my friends!

GifAbyss - Alpha Coders

GifAbyss – Alpha Coders

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More Rain Forecast for Tonight!

S-Media-Cache-AKO.pinimg.com via Yolanda Vanveen via Cathy Ruggiero

S-Media-Cache-AKO.pinimg.com via Yolanda Vanveen via Cathy Ruggiero

I love the whole new thing of gifs, where there is motion in an image. I have no clue how it’s done, but I’m so impressed. This company has made a LOT of these. Each time I see one, I think, “This is my favorite.” AND THEN I see another one…. Glorious!

We’re supposed to go bowling tonight with friends tonight. I don’t know if we’re actually going because we haven’t heard from our friends yet. Another good friend who usually goes with us has opted to enjoy the Christmas parade tonight in Greenwood. I hope they don’t get rained out.

Even if we drown tonight, I won’t complain. We really need the rain.

While it ISN’T raining, though, I’m going to go out and see what I can do about clearing the residue of my harvesting out of our square foot garden today. I’d like to get things wrapped up for the winter out there – which seems to be starting Wednesday evening, with possible SNOW!

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Filed under Arkansas, Mother Nature, Square Foot Gardening - Raised Beds

Last Rose of the Season


My husband brought this in on his way back from the shop this afternoon. It’s probably the very last rose of the season. This is our favorite rose, called, “Rio Samba.” It has a long blooming season. It starts out as a tight yellow bud with a very narrow coral band around the edges of the leaves. As it opens, the yellow is in the center and the outer leaves are coral. As it ages, the whole bloom turns coral.



Here’s another view. This will have to hold us until the spring. I hope you enjoyed this.

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Gorgeous Photo

7 wonders

7 wonders

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