Tag Archives: Mother Nature

Idyllic Place

Richard Green – LinkedIn

I feel an especially strong pull toward wherever this idyllic place is because it’s yucky outside here in Greenwood, Arkansas today. It’s cold and rainy. Forecasted for us for the weekend is a ‘wintry mix.” I think I’ve told you before that Arkansas does not do winter well.

I wouldn’t mind if it just turned cold and snowed. We always do ICE first – sometimes really causing almost un-repairable damage – and THEN we might get some snow over it.

In 2001 we got a ‘wintry mix’ that resulted in our being captive in our house, unable to get down our 650+ foot steep driveway until we chain-sawed the trees. That took us three days of really long, hard, cold work. The tree branches were snapping off as we stood on the porch. I still cringe when I hear that awful sound. We have what we call ‘trash trees’ rather than majestic or beautiful ones, but I love them all and it broke my heart when we lost so many.

So as I gaze wistfully at this gorgeous photo by Richard Green, I wish I could escape there and spend the day, at least.

Our worst day is supposed to be Saturday, when we have a 100% chance of rain/sleet/snow and flying hairballs, according to the weather channel. I just have all appendages crossed that whatever happens will be clear for Monday, when we pick up our son at the airport for a much-anticipated visit from Thailand.

“The Climate Is What You Expect; The Weather Is What You Get” – unknown

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Filed under Awe-Inspiring Photography, Mother Nature

Colors and Textures of Nature

“Field Maple” – Paul Militaru Photography


“Gold Leaves” – Paul Militaru Photography


“Grass and Clover” – Paul Militaru Photography


“In Depth Study of Mushrooms” – Paul Militaru Photography


“Spine and Leaves” – Paul Militaru Photography


“Thistles” – Paul Militaru Photography


“Two Shades of Rusty” – Paul Militaru Photography


“Warm Colors at the End of the Fall” – Paul Militaru Photography


“What’s Left – Thorns” – Paul Militaru Photography

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A Feast for the Eyes

“A Place of Meditation” – Paul Militaru Photography


“Fog in the Mountains” – Paul Militaru Photography


“In the Mountains Relax and Rest” – Paul Militaru Photography


“Lights and Shadows” – Paul Militaru Photography


“Path” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Beautiful Sight

Hannah Kirk via Morning Coffee With Abba Ltd

We took Amber, our 93 pound lab ‘puppy’ with us in the truck as we did our errands yesterday.


She goes nuts when she hears the words, ‘go,’ or ‘car’, so she followed us out and jumped up into the back seat of the truck as soon as we opened the door for her. She doesn’t care where we’re going, she just wants to go with us.

We were almost home when FOUR does ran across the road in front of the truck. Three went across in a small parade and then one was hesitant. She followed soon after. We’ve passed deer beside the road before, but Amber didn’t notice them because they didn’t move. This time she got all excited, wanting to go out and play with them.  She didn’t bark to scare them.

The deer got safely across the road and we continued on to our driveway, feeling lucky to have shared such a beautiful sight!

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Filed under Amazing Animals, Mother Nature

A Friend’s Rain

Doreen Adamson-Liber

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Watching the Glorious Rain!


We finally enjoyed a beautiful rain this morning!

It was overcast when we awoke, and the sky continued to darken as we ate breakfast. By the time we were in the office, it was like night! Of COURSE the doggies wanted to go out. As we did that, we decided that maybe we ought to pay attention and close the garage door for what was coming. It was MUCH cooler, so we opened the front and back doors and went out on the porch to welcome the storm.

We ended up with the doggies out there with us, watching the clouds move past us from west to east, erasing the one band of lighter sky as we watched. Then wave after wave of hard rain followed. It was coming straight down, so we didn’t get wet. Amber played with my husband, trying to drop a really heavy toy on his socked toes in his sandals, then switching to a basketball, then back to the heavy toy over and over. Every once in a while, if lightning flashed or thunder rolled, she would look out the screen, wag her tail, and then continue the joy of her play.

We sat out there about 15 minutes or so. It was WONDERFUL. The weather people say that it should clear sometime this afternoon and then we could get more this evening. HOOORAAAAAAY!

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The Ice Cream Truck Has Melted!

Kathleen Helsel – quotesgram.com

Actual temperature here is 106. Heat index says 111. I say, “UGH.”

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Interesting Day


The weather alert thingie in our bedroom woke me up early this morning – about 2:45 a.m. – flashing red. I got up to see what it was warning us about. A severe thunderstorm. That started about 3 a m.  There was an impressive amount of thunder and lightning, along with a good amount of rain – just perfect for feeling grateful we had a roof over our head, a strong house, and good windows – and then turning over and happily going back to sleep.

It was still raining, or raining again – though without all the fanfare, when we got up for breakfast. The dogs didn’t seem to mind going out to take care of business, but they were barking at the door only moments later. The wind was whipping trees around, so I closed the garage door for at least the morning.

We’re due for severe weather – rain, gusty winds, hail, possible tornadoes, possible flooding, and flying hair balls – this afternoon and evening, so the whole day will be interesting.

Both doggies have been out again and are happily playing.  The cats are curled up in their ‘cube’ beds on top of the woodpile in the garage. The fish are happily swimming in their still-clean water. The people are happy they don’t have to go do a bunch of errands today. We might drive down quickly and get the mail at the bottom of the driveway, but today will be a nice inside day for us.

Hold onto your hats if you’re in our area today. If you aren’t, I hope you’re enjoying the weather where you are.


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Joke on Us


I started mowing the lawn yesterday, in a rush because we were going to have thunderstorms in the afternoon. My husband came out and took over when I had finished about half of the yard. I drank some water and then went out to run the leaf blower to clean up the front porch, sidewalks front and back and the garage pad of all the grass and dirt.

We both came in breathing pretty heavily and drank water again and rested.

Can you hear Mother Nature giggling? She has a cruel sense of humor sometimes. I think she loves seeing us rush around and then NOT send the rain…

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Filed under Funny Signs - Humor, Housekeeping - Maintenance, Mother Nature


“Daffodils” – Paul Militaru Photography

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Rainy Day


“Widespread heavy rain and strong thunderstorms will be likely throughout the morning and early afternoon. Another round of storms will be possible late tonight into Friday morning”. -Joe – meteorologist from KFSM, 5 News, Fort Smith, AR.

I’m so happy that we again dodged the bullet of a really impressive-looking, multicolored blob of severe weather that might have come through here. I hope that everyone who WAS in the line of bad storms is all right today.

We just had some rain last night and will enjoy being inside and dry today as several waves of heavy rain – but not severe – come through.

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New Iris

Last fall I cleaned out the planter where the ‘new’ iris were, the ones from Nanna’s Iris Garden in Charleston, AR.  I transplanted iris all over the yard, and still have some that need to be planted. This is one of our new ones and I think it’s really nice. I cut the top bloom and brought it into the house for us to enjoy, leaving the rest to bloom outside.

I love this time of year, each time I take a trip around the yard, I find something that fills my heart.

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Filed under Arkansas, Gardening, Greenwood, Mother Nature



The rain started just after we got into the car in the Walmart parking lot early yesterday afternoon, and we’ve had showers off and on ever since. It’s very overcast and looks like another one is coming any minute. No severe weather this time, and for that I am truly grateful. (I tend to get nervous when the weather alert is flashing red and the weather guys on TV are telling you to bend over and kiss your nether end bye-bye…)

THIS rain is one where you can almost hear all the trees, plants, and grass saying a collective “AHHHHHH!” A nice, soaky, healing rain.

It makes my husband cranky, though, because his only thought is that we’ll have to mow the lawn again soon, when we JUST finished doing that this past week.

I have mentally switched from my “OUTSIDE to-do list” to my “INSIDE to-do list,” both of which are longer than my arms right now. I know I’ll never actually get either list finished – that just never happens around here. I just keep plugging away, telling myself that it’s better now than it was before I started, and make myself content with that.

I’m looking forward to getting something accomplished today, enjoying the rain, taking a break and curling up with my current book, and maybe even catching a nap this afternoon.



Have a wonderful Sunday!


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Thoughts About the Rain


“The richness of the rain made me feel safe and protected; I have always considered the rain to be healing — a blanket — the comfort of a friend. Without at least some rain in any given day, or at least a cloud or two on the horizon, I feel overwhelmed by the information of sunlight and yearn for the vital, muffling gift of falling water.” ~ Douglas Coupland


“Do not be angry with the rain; it simply does not know how to fall upwards.” ~ Vladimir Nabokov


“Never run in the rain with your socks on.” ~ Billie Joe Armstrong


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Good Morning!


I just took the doggies out, walking straight out to the garden to see if our plants made it through the night. It was due to get close to freezing this morning, and I debated whether to try to cover things up. I finally decided I had too many things to cover and would just hope for the best.

It wouldn’t have been the end of the world if the plants had frozen, but they were doing really well and I would have been very disappointed if Mother Nature had zapped everything.

Everything is good!

I hope that the weather is good where you are this morning. I wonder what the day will bring?


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

I’ve Definitely Quit Dancing!


Okay. We were in the middle of a drought and it even caused bad problems with our water supply, making the turnovers in the lakes cause our water to have a bad odor and taste.  Wildfire danger was high. Warm, windy days were worrisome.  I started doing mental and physical rain dances, trying to get our area over the problem.

Mother Nature listened. I’m not sure if she saw and heard ME, or if a whole lot of people were also doing rain dances, but she delivered. Big Time. We’ve had rain, rain showers, heavy rain, storms, sleet, and more rain. I’ve definitely STOPPED even thinking about rain dances, but now I’m thinking Mother Nature is saying, “You wanted rain. Okay. Here it is!”

Today we’re due for MORE storms, particularly between 11:00 and 3 this afternoon with possible severe weather.  We did a group of errands this morning, paring our list down to one appt this afternoon, in an effort to be ONLY blown away, rather than blown away and DROWNED trying to get our stuff done.

The doggies came and demanded that I take them out a couple of minutes ago, insisting they would blow up if I didn’t take them out NOW. I complied, then came back for my camera, to record some of the beauty I found while walking around the yard. The storm today might wreak havoc with our yard, so I wanted to try to catch Mother Nature at her BEST – first.

Every day the wisteria gets more lush and more purple.

It SMELLS wonderful, too!

We have purple iris blooming in planters, in clusters around the yard, even off the edge of the civilized part of our yard, plus down our driveway.


We have buds on the three new Rio Samba rose bushes, and now some of the buds are starting to open up!


A knock out rose bush is starting to have blooms.


This is the north side of our square foot garden.

And the south side.

The winds really picked up while I took pics and walked the dogs. We’ll probably be right in the heart of the thunderstorms this afternoon, since we have to be out at 1:30. It’s a good thing we don’t melt in the rain. We’re thankful for our warm, dry home. Our doggies have already snuggled down for a nap, and even the two cats came in with us.

Have a wonderful day. Stay warm and dry!

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



“Let the rain kiss you. Let the rain beat upon your head with silver liquid drops. Let the rain sing you a lullaby.”
Langston Hughes

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It’s “Wissing!”

When our wisteria starts to bloom each year, my husband says, “The wisteria is wissing!”

Each day it get a bit more lush, a bit more purple. We just love it.


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Filed under Favorite Things, Gardening, Mother Nature

Before the Rains Came

Before the rains started last week, things were sprouting all over the yard. This is the lovely black elephant ear plant that Kay got me for my birthday, plus some iris and some phlox.


Amber hasn’t discovered the other hyacinths in the yard yet, so she has ONLY eaten one…. Also some iris and a rose bush.

This hydrangea is sprouting in one of the two brick planters we have to demolish soon.


The rose bush on the left is the Joseph’s Coat climbing rose bush that Kay gave me for my birthday. We’re hoping it will climb up the wisteria truck next to it. The plant on the right is a camellia that will soon have blooms.


Some of our twice-blooming iris!


A close-up of one of the branches of our redbud trees.


Surrounded by redbud branches….


This is one of the 6 or 8 redbuds we have in the yard.

As we stay in the house, or run through the rain, it’s nice to have so many reminders that wonderful weather is on its way.

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My Colorful World via Tanglewood Forest via Cathy Ruggiero


This span of rain is continuing through tomorrow. Friday is forecast to have NO RAIN, but then it starts in again Saturday and Sunday, and then again Tuesday and Wednesday – so far. Do you suppose the awful drought we’ve been in could be considered ‘over?’

Our washer and dryer have been running almost non-stop, trying to keep up with all the wet towels from drying our sweet animals. Why is it that animals love you most – and want to cuddle – when they’re wringing wet?

I’ll be almost afraid to look at my veggie garden and new plants after all this. Just a little too much of a good thing….

MEANWHILE – you would THINK I would be super-productive in the house, and even playing in my art room.  I have found that these rainy days are lazy days for me. I’m on the computer, reading good books, falling asleep under my cozy throw in my recliner….

I hope that you’ve been enjoying the week.

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The Unofficial State Tree of Arkansas

The official tree of Arkansas is the pine tree. I thought it was the Redbud, but that’s the state tree of Oklahoma, where I lived much of my childhood. We have three or four Redbuds on our property, and we carefully cut stuff away from around them, trying to encourage them to get as large as possible and have a nice show each year in the spring.




You can also see our larger propane tank and the shop here.



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While Walking the Doggies….

White hyacinth and frog

The daffodils are starting to fade now, but the hyacinths I planted last year are bursting forth now. Such a showy, happy flower.


Purple hyacinth and kind old gentleman



New Joseph’s Coat Climbing rose birthday plant and camellias.



Purple hyacinth and hydrangea.

It’s a good thing I planted several purple hyacinths, since Amber ate one of them.



glorious purple hyacinth

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Spring Has Sprung!

I love this time of year when I can walk around our yard and find beautiful flowers or buds everywhere. They renew my faith in the world and make my spirits soar. Right now there are daffodils blooming all over the place.  This is a sample of what’s in our planters.


This bunch is off the edge of the civilized part of our land in back.


And this is off the edge in the front.


The blooms on the tulip tree are quite fragile, but they’re putting on a nice display right now.


The beginning of the blooming of our wisteria that starts at the end of one of our brick planters and now grows all the way across our outside firewood rack and up into the tree on the other side of it. I hope we have a good, healthy display this year. It creates a small canopy of sorts across the corner of the driveway now. When it’s in full bloom, I love to stand under it, look up and breathe its glorious fragrance in.


And this is the purple hyacinth that Amber HASN’T found and eaten yet….

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“Blow Me Down!”

as Popeye would say.

We had really gusty winds yesterday. I decided it was nuts to try to do any mixing of Mel’s Mix, since I knew the vermiculite and the peat moss would just swirl around my head and end up inside my ears, nose, etc. We didn’t have any tree damage, thank goodness, but we did have a casualty.

We left to go to the Chinese restaurant in Greenwood. When we got to the bottom of the driveway, all we could see of our robot was his FEET!


He weighs between 175 and 200 lbs, my husband estimates, and he’s really unwieldy – heavy, bulky, and really hard to work with. He’s blown over one other time and we practically killed ourselves getting him to stand up again. I made two suggestions of what to try to get him up again. My husband blew both of them off right away, so he’s thinking about how two old folks can tackle the problem. We need some good luck, if you could send some in our direction.

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I Think I’ll Stop the Rain Dance…

“**FLASH FLOOD WARNINGS IN EFFECT UNTIL 9:30AM**  (more warnings possible later Saturday)

Another round of heavy rain mixed with storms will move in during the late morning hours and last until 3-5 PM. Some storms may potentially be severe with hail being our main threat.”

I told you about our drought. In the past 6 days we’ve had rain every day or every night. As of Thursday we had already received about 4 inches of rain. The forecast was then 3 to 5 MORE inches before this ends tonight…

I wanted the rain. I’ve danced in the rain. I’ve stood in the yard, looking up at the sky and enjoyed the rain on my face while our 91 pound yellow labrador retriever ‘puppy’ , Amber, cavorted around, running like a thing possessed, back and forth across the yard and off the edge of the civilized part of the yard, down into the woodsy area and back again.

Enough is enough, though. Many parts of Arkansas are flooding now.

Durango, AR (just north and west of Little Rock)

We live in Greenwood, just southeast of Fort Smith, in west central Arkansas. We’ve been lucky. Although things are saturated now, we haven’t seen much flooding, other than the usual low-lying places that always flood in heavy rain.

I have no idea where we stand as far as the severe drought. I would THINK that this has replenished the local reservoirs so that our drinking water can get back to normal.  This is supposed to end tonight, after the worst rain and storming we’ve had in the past 6 days (including possible severe weather today) is finally past.  Right now it looks like it does right before nightfall.

I just took Amber out, and even SHE just took care of things quickly and was ready to come right back in – at least for awhile.  Molly, our white fuzzy schnauzer/cocker spaniel cross, looks like an old, dirty mop. She loves it outside, coming in drenched and dirtier each time. I’m wearing out the washing machine and dryer trying to have clean, dry towels ready to dry her as well as possible. As soon as things dry out a bit (maybe Tuesday) she’s going into the kitchen sink with lots of no tears puppy shampoo and a large brush!

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Anthony D’Angelo via Krafty Max

Yesterday we got soaked so many times I lost count! I’m happy about it because we need the rain so badly. We’re forecast to have 4 inches of rain or more by the end of this on Saturday.

We had a productive day, smiling as we were soaked over and over in the course of it.

The brick place called and said a guy would deliver our bricks by lunchtime. That was pretty close to correct, as our driveway detector went off about 1:00 or so. A wonderful man with a long, flowing, snow-white beard came up our driveway on a fork lift with our big package of 400+ bricks and gently set them down exactly where my husband wanted them.  The wind was gusting so hard that our ‘Santa’s’ beard kept blowing up over his face! My husband told the man, “I want to look like you when I grow up.” His eyes twinkled as he waved to us, laughing, and neatly turned the fork lift around and headed back down the driveway.  Since it’s supposed to rain through Saturday, we probably won’t even get started on the brick planter project until next week. Meanwhile, we’ll stop at the hardware store one of these days to see if we can find a brick layer to redo the planters once we get them emptied and taken down.

My husband’s ‘building-a-new-computer-for-me’ project continues to hit snags. He started out trying to replicate what is in HIS computer. We finally figured out that the new motherboard is different (even though it carries the same model number, and wouldn’t accept the memory he had purchased. He added the memory to his computer and ordered different memory for my computer from the book that came with the motherboard. We did this TWICE, having to return the memory TWICE  (the second set will be picked up today by UPS). We finally discovered through the Crucial website an application where we could see if the memory for which we had been searching (also found in the motherboard book) was compatible with our motherboard. It wasn’t! They had a button for finding memory that WAS compatible with the motherboard.  We found one and it’s on its way now.

Since we didn’t have to stay home the rest of the day, we decided to pack up the truck with the bags I had filled with donations from the art room for the Veterans Thrift Store. About half way to Fort Smith the heavens opened and, even with the windshield wipers on high and the defroster on, it was hard to see where we were going. We were playing “motorboat” driving through the water in the streets. It was still raining by the time we got to the Thrift Store, but my husband and I got out the bags plus other stuff, for the nice lady who gave us a receipt. We were soaked by the time we got back into the truck.

On the way home, we stopped at the bank. Interestingly, the rain really started up the minute I got out of the car.

We stopped for gas. My husband got soaked because the wind was blowing the rain sideways.

We stopped at the deli for fish. We both got soaked again on the way back to the car.

When we got home, we took the doggies out. This time we had umbrellas to use that weren’t more trouble to deal with than getting soaked. The wind was still buffeting the ran around, so our clothes got soaked once again.

We spent the rest of the day inside, except for taking doggies out from time to time, happy to get warm and dry. It rained overnight and is still raining now, but a steady, soaking rain that might really do us some good.

The Fedex delivery person came while I was on the front porch watching Amber taking care of business, so I put her in quickly and ran around to the garage to receive the package – getting wet yet again. It’s beginning to feel weird when I’m dry…..

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Random Words

Ahhhhhh! We’re finally getting a bit of rain.

We’re in the middle of a bad drought that started in August of last year, I think. It’s to the point now that the lakes that provide the water for Greenwood don’t have enough water when they do their semi-annual ‘turnover’ to keep the water from having a smell and an off taste. Thankfully, we get our water from Milltown, down the road a bit, and we haven’t noticed a problem, but the whole area is being affected.

I don’t know how much rain we need to have to cure the drought and get us back to normal; but thankfully, we have good chances for rain from today through the next week. You can almost hear the plants and the grass saying, “Ahhhhhhh!” when you walk around outside.

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Thankful and Happy

Humor Mash

It’s cold for Arkansas today, well below freezing and a gusty North wind. The wind chill is ‘too-darned-cold-to-be-out-here!’ We got freezing rain last night and our deck is treacherous. The evergreens are looking really weighted down, but all else looks like we dodged a bullet weatherwise.

Still we froze our parts off taking animals out this morning. My husband went back out because he noticed that we only had ONE feeder with seed in it and a gazillion birds – plus a squirrel – all trying to get something to eat. The one feeder that still had food was one I filled with small bird seed, rather than the sunflower seeds we put out for everyone else. We decided that the feeder is defective and that the sweet birds aren’t getting anything before the seeds freeze at the bottom. So I’ve washed out another feeder and will put the small bird seed in the better feeder and we’ll put it back out. We’re thankful and happy to be able to stay home today where it’s safe and warm.

Projects Update –

1) My husband is working on the welding lathe, some in the shop and some in the office. He got a nice face plate for the control box that will house the motor so that he can mount the buttons on the front nicely. Otherwise, we’re waiting for some parts to come in.

2) The new-computer-for-me project came to a screeching halt when we had a defective motherboard. We returned that, got another, only to find after my husband worked with a tech on the phone at the place we’ve always trusted to get computer parts couldn’t make it work, either. So the 2nd motherboard was mailed back to them yesterday. They should get in Monday and hopefully have a replacement in the mail to us next week.

3) My clean-out-the-pantry project is entering Day 5.  I’m hoping to finish up today. I have to get up on a high ladder to reach things up there, so my husband has agreed to receive things we’ll give away and put them somewhere until we’ve culled out all that needs to come down. Then I’ll clean and organize the rest. Pics to follow.

Since it’s so yucky outside, I’ll start a stew in the crock pot before getting up on the ladder. I know after going up and down and cleaning a bunch today, I won’t feel like cooking later.

I hope YOUR Sunday is a good one.

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Filed under Acting Like a Grownup, Lewis projects, Mother Nature




I love it when it rains – even when we’re not in the middle of the worst drought this area has seen in years.  We’ve had so little that the lake where our town gets most of its drinking water is down to some 16 feet deep now, not nearly enough to allow the water system to work as it should. The people who get Greenwood water have switched to bottled water until further notice. I don’t know how much rain we need to get back to normal. Luckily, we – on top of the ridge line southeast of Greenwood outside of the city limits – get our water from Milltown-Washburn water and a different lake that isn’t having problems yet.

It isn’t raining now, but it did overnight. Everything is still very wet, so we’re finally able to burn some trash we’ve been stashing in the house and in the shop. On the way back from helping my husband take boxes out for the burn barrel, I stopped in the back yard to simply enjoy.  It’s still gray, clouds so thick they’re not letting a lot of sun in. The air is so dense it almost feels as if it’s raining. I tipped my head back and slowly breathed in.



Henry Wadsworth Longfellow via Lisa Bearnes Richey


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Sun Through Clouds

This isn’t that great a photograph, but when I was taking the doggies out this morning, I was really struck by the beauty of the sun streaming through the clouds. This only lasted long enough for me to go back inside and grab my phone. It’s now overcast and we’re supposed to have rain the rest of the day and evening – a wonderful thing to help with the bad drought in our area.

I think it was Irene who suggested that I try emailing the photo to myself to get it off the phone. It worked! THANK YOU, Irene!


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“Sunrise – Lake Waccamaw NC”

“Sunrise-Lake Waccamaw NC “- Lisa Bearnes Richey

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