Monday, August 30, 2010

the color purple

...Purple...such an interesting color in all its varied hues....and one that seems to play a recurring role in my life this year...

Take for instance, the flash of a purple thistle flower seen while riding along a trail, which on repeating that trip fails to be found anywhere. Or the purple stain of crushed blackberries when you pick a too-ripe berry that squishes between your fingers. Or the purple bruise you get when you slip into an unseen gully reaching for those little fruits. Or the purple of elderberry jelly my hubby had with breakfast. Or the purple shadows that come with the sunset.......Hmmmm.....purple.....

With all of these 'subtle' hints I've have been getting, I believe I will need to dye some fiber purple.....and, since I'm in the process of spinning up some black alpaca for a fair-isle sweater, I think a touch of purple in its magenta-pink hue will be just the thing to make it sing. I know I have several shades of white, cream, and light fawn alpaca fibers that will look awesome in this color...what you do think ?

Thursday, August 19, 2010

shadow dancin'

...what else is a puppy to do in the sun ?

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Berry-time ! .. and the Circle of Life

It's been an absolutely wonderful skies, bright sun, slight breeze...all in all, a great weekend to be out and about in the great outdoors. We had already noticed the abundance of green unripened fruit in the blackberry brambles this summer, and with it being a bumper crop in the works, I persuaded DH that this year we needed to pick enough to make a batch of blackberry wine...we need 15 pounds for the 5-gallon, earlier in the week my daughter and I had been out and picked several pounds – I did manage to get 3 pounds in the freezer and left the rest for munching.....she managed to demolish the remaining 1.5 pounds in a day, leaving DH somewhat disappointed as he likes to eat them as well, so he had to go scope out the back field and did bring home another bucket full...Anyway, once the sun was no longer directly overhead yesterday, the three of us went out to pick more fruit – came home with another 6 pounds, and planned to head out early Sunday to pick more before the sun started beating down on us again. It's unbelievably incredible the amount of fruit out start picking on a couple of stalks, and every time you turn elsewhere, or bend down, or move a branch, you find more and more and the time we called it quits for today and headed home, washed off what we brought home (each of us had a bucket to start the morning with), weighed it and packaged up what we needed....and yes, still managed to leave 3 pounds of blackberries in the fridge for eating and to make smoothies with tonight. Total count of fruit harvested this weekend: 18.25 pounds....yes, eighteen plus....and we could have continued to pick if our buckets hadn't all been full .....

Being out in the woods and fields picking fruit is in and of itself a great way to spend the day....add to that the fact we never left our property, we heard/saw evidence of the multitude of wildlife that we know is there (and I am sure with our crisscrossing the berry fields, spooked several of the smaller creatures such as the mice and squirrels, a fact that did not go unnoticed by our newest neighbor, a small hawk). For that matter, this morning at one point I left the field and wandered down an old trail and further back into the woods....told my hubby later on that I had heard something “purring” at one point while I was stopped. Now, given the fact that this is a ways out and in woods where there is known to be numerous assorted sizes of predators, I highly doubt that it was someone's family pet....and we know for a fact that there is a bobcat, or family of, living in the immediate vicinity. Was I worried? purring cat is a contented cat, so since I was not disrupting a hunt or getting into a rock pile that could potentially hide a den, I think the big cat just watched me go about my business and left me to it without showing itself....Because I know we have these in the area (along with fox, weasel/fisher, hawk, eagle, coyote, and occasional bear), I am very conscious of where I go and keep my ears and eyes alert to what is around me as the last thing you want to do is come up unaware on a mother bear with cubs. So, other than my encounter with the unseen cat, the hawk flew over our heads several times to see if we had jumped anything of interest, and we did see a small red fox at the edge of the sandpit...yeah, the hunting for our local predators is fairly decent. There is abundant small rodents, rabbits, grouse and partridge, raccoon, porcupine, beaver, turkeys, deer, and moose.

The circle of life...we find evidence of it every time we head out into the back woods...occasional small skulls after they have been bleached by the sun, antler scrapings on saplings, multitude of hoof prints crossing the old railroad bed near a known wild apple tree that quickly show small and large deer as well as the occasional moose (several sizes of these as well)....we have also chanced to find the partially eaten remains of a deer or moose on occasion near the trail (found usually because of the smell emanating from it) which because of it's size had to have been brought down by something fairly fast or large, which ultimately becomes food for many of the smaller predators once the hunter has had his fill.....Even the plant life shows the pattern of life and death....what once was a great open field is now not quite so wide, the small saplings that used to line the edge have grown tremendously and now form a canopy above the slower-growing plants...DH and I were just talking about that this week while walking down the old railroad bed about how we could 'see' into the woods whereas we had not been able to do so several years ago......the forest is growing up, the undergrowth that had originally clung to life after the forest was originally logged – this has reached up and taken hold of their position as the next generation of future logging, all that remains as undergrowth now is that which thrives in the cool and damp beneath the canopy....the ferns and moss, and the baby trees that need the protection from the weather that now shelter under the parent trees at the edge of the woods as we see and understand it, each plant or animal or bird, all following their own cycle of life that may or may not culminate in their landing on our dinner plate or heating our house ........

Thursday, August 12, 2010

the realm of possibility

Found something interesting last night while reading….for a change, just reading for the sake of enjoyment, in this case a book I had read some time back but recently started re-reading. It always amazes me that in doing so, something new ‘clicks’ and makes the mind race in new directions….To preface this, I ought to tell you that I am a huge fan of the King Arthur/Camelot/Merlin novels – fantasy/magic/romance….what more could one ask for? In any case, what I am currently reading is “The Mists of Avalon” by Marion Zimmer Bradley and enjoying it immensely. Came across this passage that was supposed to have been instructions from the Druids to the young priestesses of Avalon…”..If you would have the message of the Gods to direct your life, look for that which repeats, again and again; for this is the message given by the Gods, the karmic lesson you much learn for this incarnation. It comes again and again until you have made it part of your soul and your enduring spirit…”

Wow…there is power in those words...”…that which repeats, again and again…” All too often something happens in our lives that we, for what-ever reason are not looking at it beyond the surface projection. Take for example running into a friend you haven’t seen for some time but everything clicks into place like no time at all has parted you. The conversation picks up where it left off…the point in your relationship has neither stagnated nor rescinded into the distant past, it just is and moves forward from here. You connect with someone you knew through work, someone who had jokingly (you thought) said you needed to come work for him… you start to wonder at the wisdom of this thought when he returns and again proffers the same thought.

So, is there some truth to these words found within a book of pure fiction?..or is it fiction? How many times do we unconsciously or even consciously, refuse to see the pattern emerging before our eyes? Is it possible that something exists beyond the normal scope of things that moves us towards something or someone, and for whatever reason we deny this pattern of events? Is the truth beyond our scope of imagination? Are we too level-headed to allow the non-rational to take hold??

…and there you have it…I accept the fact that there are things/beings beyond this plane of existence…I am learning to listen to, and to watch for, the clues that come my way. In the faith that I was raised in, this would not be an acceptable alternative, to follow or believe in what used to be called ‘the Old Ways’….but there is something to the earth magik’s, and listening to the message resonating from the ground beneath our feet and the skies above us…..what patterns are we missing that has been repeating for some time now, who’s call continues to grow stronger because we have not heeded it as of yet? What changes could be wrought in our lives if we stopped and listened, just this once…?

Saturday, August 7, 2010

the Tattoo

Tattoos are very interesting things. When you see someone with one, the mind starts wondering what it is, does it symbolize something or was it just because everyone else had one? …does it say something about the owner, or it is just an arbitrary image picked at random because it fit the space?...does it have a mate on someone else’s body like a name or the other half of a Mizpah coin? …are they just a single item or part of an ever-expanding complex of images?

My two best friends and I had decided we were going to get a tattoo when we turned 50…well, he went ahead and got one to add to his collection; she and I are still debating it, talking stage still, wondering about the cost, when to do this, where to put it, etc….and yes, we are all OVER 50 now, but I figure if my mom could get her’s at 67, I have some

A tattoo is a very personal thing, for me at least. It needs to say something about ME, who I am, what I stand for, what my interest(s) are….and by this, nothing run-of-the-mill, ordinary, artsy-fartsy, carbon copy of some-one else’s…..So, where do I begin? Because when all is said and done, the thinking has been ongoing for some time now. I have definite ideas of what I would like to have, just not finalized to any one image – and that is all I plan to have is the one….so, who am I , really? I have bits of all kinds of images dancing in my head, so here is Me trying to make sense of it all…. Simple, clean lines, very straightforward and uncluttered, with gentle curves as opposed to angular/boxy lines. Spiders, simply because I am a spinner. Angels and/or fairies, because I have a fascination for the mystical/mythical beings that inhabit our world. Rocks, representing stability and solidness but sometimes hiding their beauty within like geodes. Celtic knots, the intricate weaving of cords that look at once solid and impenetrable yet easily pulled open and apart, representing the ties that bind us together and how much are lives are intertwined. Trees and/or plants, what symbolize life and growing things. Stick figures of people or hands enclosed in a heart reflecting my love of family and friends. An image of diverging paths/roads, because I have always followed my own path -- as my sister said, walked to the beat of a different drummer – and the family euphemism of my “taking the scenic path’ because I got lost (yes, I took the wrong way to get somewhere, but we eventually despite the 80-mile round trip misstep, got to where we needed/wanted to be)……

See what I mean ? …not such an easy task to define ME in a single image, there are simply too many facets comprising the Me that is ME….So, the thinking and reflecting on these images continues as I try to make some sense of it all, as well as come up with a way to pull them all together in a cohesive unit that truly will say ….. Me.