Why am I feeling invisible these days?

I usually air on a level playing field. Meaning if I can’t say something that brings hope, smiles, or just plain giggles I tend to not air my thoughts out onto the field, meaning yet again out to the world as we know it.

I’m aware that my little tiny spot here on the internet will probably look more like that tree in the forest ~ you all know that tree, right? It’s the one that finally gave up due to age, or insect damage, woodpeckers, etc. It’s that tree that needed to fall onto the forest floor to compost and give back to the earth.

This tree that is no longer living is indeed living and giving life back. Just because this tree became old and needed to make way for the younger, stronger trees in the forest does not in any way make light of its importance to the planet. Or, merely to the forest for which it sprouted as a miniature speck of a seedling with a path to follow for the length of time the tree would be present.

Why then am I feeling invisible these days? as the title states and I’ve gone off talking about trees growing old, and returning to the forest floor to give life back to the soil it took its nourishment from for many years, hopeful decades. At least I hope it was many years ~ life span for that tree.

My thoughts ache due to losing my beloved pet of 19 human years on the 13th of July 2020. She will forever live in a special place among my thoughts ~ A place where only she resides. Just like the many other beloved pups that came into my life, mostly rescue animals in need of human love that goes beyond just walking and feeding them. Each of them have their own special place within my thoughts.

All of my pups spoke to me though their eyes and movements as my silent chatter to them followed the same routes. Of course I spoke with them, often more in conversation than with actual humans. As most of my time was spent with the pups on average ~ given a 24 hour day. I always knew that I was never really alone, or felt invisible. Until, now…

Right now I’m faced with the knowledge that I shall not own another pup. Mia was the last for me. I’ve had to accept many things in this life time so far, which spans like an old oak tree, many decades. I say oak tree because it is a hard wood , yet can be milled and turned into something magical and can last beyond the owners years. A piece of furniture made from Oak wood can be handed down to generations of family members or it can find a truly new home to become cherished.

I wonder if people think about where the wood came from that made that lovely piece of furniture or bowl for cooking, mixing, eating, etc? Probably not…I’m a strange bird some might say. I ponder over these things as they bring me joy, and moments of peaceful, tranquil thoughts. These are the things that I’ve accepted that I need to have so I can continue to live a full and happy life.

Happiness is different for each of us I think. For me it’s trees because ever since I was a seedling (so to speak) child growing up with my grandparents I’ve gazed upward at the tall pines of Florida where I grew up before moving to Canada in aw and wonderment. It appeared to me as a child they each reached for the sky as the warmth of the sun shown down on them. The slightest whiff of a breeze would cause the tops of the pines to sway back and fourth in what through my young eyes was merely the winds being the instruments for the trees musical song just for me. The trees danced with joy and happiness and I was lucky enough to be there to witness the concert.

Those days have long since melted away and became a somewhat mass of who I was to become decades later. Strong like oak, yet bendable like pines when the winds blew. Purposeful, and yet not overbearing to be seen or heard. Reaching for the sky where the fluffy clouds drifted overhead. I use to wonder what the very tops of those tall pines, if they could think ~ what did they think of the fluffy clouds appearing to be enjoying the concert as well as I? Coming from below them.

Over the years those pines growing in Florida have had to weather many storms and brutal hurricanes and if they were destined to survive oh my what a story they could tell, if only they could speak to us. Many of the pines didn’t survive the storms and the brutally of the winds. They bend as much as they can, but over time they become weak in places where the rings of time were once tight and strong.

Sort of like me with bad knees wanting to just give it up, but they continue to carry me and allow me to preform the duties that need to be done out in my little garden of Hope. I will not always feel as invisible as I do right now, while I walk the path through grief of my pup and world events.

I shall rally back with yet again memories of my pup knowing what I am thinking and giving me the puppy shoulder to take solace. I shall become whole again and not feel as if everyone if they looked could see right through me and not see me at all.

If nothing else I shall garden as it gives me hope, and not just for the harvest. I’m tending to life and it will eventually give back to me. Let’s be safe, tend to our lives as best each of us can no matter what belief we have ~ after all each belief belongs to each of us that breaths. You don’t need to believe in the peace I find from the trees around me, to enjoy moments spent here reading my thoughts.

I suppose I’ll continue to respect my life and all others ~ Creations included

Cotton Candy Sunrise

There are mornings when sleep escapes me and the dawn pulls at my heart strings to get up and face the day with perhaps a surprise or two. But, if you’re at all like me all you wish for before sunrise is that hot cup of coffee or freshly brewed and steeped tea from your favorite mug.

My vessel of choice has a tiny cracked edge on the rim, but each time I find myself reaching in the cupboard for this particular mug.  I have to smile as most mornings I feel as worn and chipped as this piece of pottery.

Why don’t I just chuck this damaged mug to the curb you ponder? Well, just because it’s not a perfect specimen of finely crafted clay any longer it still has value. Value for its vast space that is empty, until I fill it with my favorite beverage. Value because it was perhaps a cherished gift at one point in time many decades ago, or perhaps just because it reminds me each and every morning that even though I may feel damaged, chipped, cracked, or just down right worn out to the bone. There is value to be found.

No matter what state this body or mind is in at the time, I still can hold on to my own value and validate myself. I fear too many are waiting for validation from others when all we need is to look in the mirror and see ourselves and the value we all contain in each layer of skin, each cell that makes each of us who we are.

The dawn called to me this morning and would not be ignored. I rose, I brewed that cup of coffee and lovingly poured it into my favorite chipped mug, while dragging my feet inside of my floppy slippers that have aged to the point of barely remaining on my feet.

The curtains came ablaze with pinks and oranges to the point of shocking me into taking flight in those loose slippers with mug, and camera in hand to validate this special dawn that was determined to wake me just before its arrival.

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Stay safe and happy my readers.

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One day at a time little bluebird…

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Last Fall was a time for the seasons to change gradually into our long 6 months of winter

Winter LeafThen we must settle into another frame of mind as the days grow shorter in daylight hours and the light of the winter months take on a frigid appearance. Then as if by design one night around 10 p.m it will appear to be daylight as the moon shines brightly upon the fallen white snow that covers everything. It’s quite magical really. Almost as magical as the colors of the Northern Lights. Every time I am blessed to witness the Northern Lights I dream of warm summer days after a rain when the rainbows appear to dance across the sky from left to right or is it right to left ..

Today is April 29, 2020 and Spring has arrived along with uncertain days and long nights of dreaming of carefree moments that went by un-noticed before. Those moments should have been cherished and the delights of just being able to walk outside without forethought of possible danger. Today, we live in un-certain times, but my heart holds on to H O P E, since I was given the middle name Esparanza which is hope in English. I’ve always throughout my life , these 62 years ~ Held on to Hope … Cherished hope, prayed for hope, wished for hope for others and for myself.

One day at a time little bluebird, hold on to the beauty of hope, one day at a time

 

The hidden dangers of Wage Increases…

What a difference a year can make. I turned sixty in 2018, realizing that I’d aged out of my life insurance which now only pays out 30% and triples in cost moving forward, which I opted out of. The wage increase to $15 dollars an hour may have appeared like a wonderful thing for the working force, which I’ve long been retired from. But, in reality it isn’t such a grand thing at all. Even before the increase shopping became so expensive with all of the products raising their cost and the items such as macaroni you’d buy getting smaller and smaller. Soon I imagine it will resemble pea size.

Jobs became harder to find, and lay offs were rampant. Folks were let go in droves since the employers couldn’t afford to pay as many people, benefits for those began to disappear at an alarming rate. The homeless numbers began to increase as the cost of living kept going up. Your monthly bills rose as the amount of money left over for food to just survive began to dwindle.

A jar of mayonnaise should not cost almost $8 and the cost of a loaf of bread close to $4 dollars. This past year I’ve made my own bread and recently making my own homemade mayo. Thank heavens for a G O U T condition that happened a few years ago. You may wonder why I’m happy about this?

Well, you first have to find what triggers your gout pain and believe me it’s so painful that I could barely walk. You can’t sleep either because Gout does not sleep when you want too. So, you either suffer or find out what foods are causing you such turmoil.  By elimination of one type of food at a time that often causes gout pain and believe me there are a ton of foods that can cause this condition. First to go was Beef …

This was not so hard as 5 years ago beef began to rise in cost causing me to give up buying the beloved product in the grocery store. Oh how my taste buds missed the beef, even to a point the memory of how good a grilled steak tasted outdoors was in the forefront of the mind.

Gout pain remained, so the next culprit was to give up seafood. Well, at this point in time I might as well told myself to give up the air that I breath. I grew up in Florida and since I could walk as a child I fished, shrimped and ate seafood like it was the life saving air we need to breath.

Asparagus is a major cause of gout pain~ added to the list making them demons to the inner workings of my body. I’d just planted from seed a million ( well, perhaps not that much~ 6 yrs ago) in my back garden eagerly waiting for the 3 years before I could harvest them and enjoy one of my favorite vegetables. Hum… They are still growing out there and looking massively beautiful each new growing season.

Enter 2019

2019 ~ Arrived with hopes for a much better year, given my knees that needed dual knee replacements back when I was in my mid forties ~ as told by my surgeon are still in good repair after I was forced to stop manual labor many years ago. I rested those knees for 7 years , bought a wheelchair and hoped for my body to realize it was time to fix its self.

With the grace of the universe they did just that without having the knee replacement done, no more cracking noises from them as the cartilage breaking off, grinding between the joints of the knee. So, did it repair its self? Only the universe knows that answer. But, I am walking and gardening still to this day as I approach 61 years old. They may blow out at any time I know, but I somehow doubt it… I listen to my body closely and it tells me without a shadow of a doubt when I need to sit or lay down. I’ve grown very good at hearing it scream at me and I just pure and simply listen.

The roof is leaking, the axle on the car (21 yr old vehicle) is cracked. The windows casing are deteriorating and my pup is aging right along with me at an alarming rate. I know her days are numbered and my heart sinks at the thought. I’ve owned dogs since I was a little girl growing up in Florida under the close eye of my guardians ~ My Grandparents….

I know with the rising costs of everything I will not get another pet to raise and love again. I simply can not afford the vet bills that are needed with a puppy, and spading. Oh my deck steps are going down hill too , which leads into the garden I love. I made some handy dandy tricks to shore up the one step to get me through last summer, but have not looked at them yet this spring as the snow has just now this week finally melted up here in Canada. My back yard is a mess that I will soon be attacking with a rake, to remove leaves and the gifts a pup leaves behind all winter long (6 months of winter) Lots and lots of gifts she bestowed to me..

I use to back in the day do it all in one day clearing and cleaning the backyard, but it will take me at least three days to do a job that once took one. I am blessed that I can still walk on these legs, still have a back that can continue to garden in her permaculture beds which I planned out years ago for this time in my life when bending was not an option for the length of time it takes to put in and work a garden. I am so happy I had forethought…..

So, the radishes are sown in my homemade garden trug (built in 2015) and the mustard greens are sown as well. I plan on more for the deck garden, since I can’t eat many of the store bought lettuces or vegetables because of the chemicals they spray on them. I am going to be one of the happiest women around when I get to eat my first salad of the season in a month or two. I found that the store bought greens hurt my 6 Ulcers .. Chemicals my friend are not our friends…..

Being my own body detective has made my quality of life much better, now if only I can find that damn pot of gold hidden I’d be golden…

Alzheimer & Diabetes Disease

There comes a time in all of our lives when the path that we follow shows wear and tear on the surface and in its foundation. We feel younger than our natural age most days and then with approaching age our path takes us down the road less traveled.

My mother has suffered with Alzheimer Disease for a couple of decades now and my late father died from complications of Diabetes. My mothers life was full of agony and stress over the many years, and my father was a troubled soul, drank himself into the hereafter in his mid forties.

So, my mind has been on watchful duty pertaining to both of these diseases for some time now. Not, stressing about them because I’ve learned over these past 18 years when my 6 ulcers were confirmed by my surgeon that stressing over daily life was just calling on a knife to poke away at my stomach. Due to the ulcers causing me unbelievable pain.

I’ve lived with the pain on a daily basis, learning how to cope and also learning which battles to fight and which to just let go. Most days are not too bad, but the pain remains. I look at this pain as a sign that I am still alive and feel grateful I can still feel pain. Weird, yes I know .. But, I’ve always been a strange person who looks at life differently from others.

I began this blog many years ago, hoping to use it as a tool to keep my mind sharp and share a laugh or two in the process. Then I began YouTube when the numbers in this blog were sub-par for me. But, I never wanted to leave the blog totally, I just wanted to find my way, and my voice. I suppose when you begin nearing those so called, “Golden Years”  if we are lucky to see them we want our voices to be heard from far and wide, or at least I did.

YouTube in the beginning was a place so big and busy I felt I’d never find my way around or be heard by a single soul for that matter. But, never being one to quit easily I kept making videos and plugging along at a steady pace. After all this daily or weekly task of making videos kept my mind busy creating something I hoped would be of interest to someone.

Luckily, it was of interest to folks all over the globe. However, I do have under 500 subscribers on YouTube, but that is just fine with me. I have regulars (50) that visit each and every video of mine and comment in the section below the videos. For this I feel eternally grateful to these men and woman who leave their own thoughts behind for me to read.

I had been pretty healthy for the past 17 years after a long battle with thyroid disease and the fall out from having this disease not diagnosed for 4 years. Like any disease un-diagnosed there are problems that arise. This past winter I caught the flu twice, and was sick for the entire month on November and also March. There was a moment in March when I could not get any air into my lungs, except for brief puffs of air. Upon, calling the doctor not being able to utter my own name they said just come in and we shall sort it out then.

There are always a chain of events that must happen and if we can see them clearly we will know that an important outcome was about to take place. As for myself it was catching the flu the second time. My blood oxygen levels were so low it was setting off alarms in the doctors office. I waited for the other shoe to fall , so to speak .. I knew something alarming was about to take place as far as my health goes.

I did however, get better from the flu and follow up tests were set in motion. My insulin levels was close to 7 and my blood pressure was high. It was time to re-adjust my lifestyle and do the work needing to be done. I’m not taking any of these health problems sitting down ..

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This past weekend could have turned out differently……

Spring….is such a delightful word that can contain many different meanings. The time of year is my favorite definition for the word, Spring. Especially coming out of a long and cold winter full of shoveling daily to keep up with all of the white stuff.

But, spring also can mean a spring in your step. For me meaning I’m almost skipping outside to visit my yet to be planted garden for this season. Even, my pup appears to have a spring in each of her tired, old four paws. You see she is aging and it is beginning to show in her movements ~ Almost, mirroring my own hobbles around on those certain rainy cold days of spring.

How about that trusty mattress that you bought years ago, and loved every night breaking it in just to your liking. But, as with breaking in a nice new pair of shoes or pair of jeans, just about the time they are broken in to your will, they will begin to fray or become airy as is my old tennis shoes .. Who have by the way never seen a tennis court, since I’ve bought them just for the comfort…Remember that mattress well springs tend to creak and crackle with age same as my pup and I …

This early spring has been unlike most of the 34 other springs I’ve experienced since immigrating up to Canada from Florida. It’s been really early.. by a month or more!

Mother Nature also must have a spring in her step as well with all the the flooding happening in the United States and in Canada. The rains came and someone forgot to turn off the taps. I wonder what type of water bill good old mother nature will owe?

Please enjoy the short video of Mother Nature showing us here who is boss…

Excuse the shaky parts in the beginning of the video, the winds were thrashing so fierce they were throwing stuff at my face.. oops…But, the rest is pretty smooth…

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Blue Jays stay in the North all Winter

It always amazes me the vast number of birds that remain here in the Northern parts of Ontario, Canada. The Blue Jay for one…

I was so excited to see them in my trees that I hurried inside to the pen tablet and started drawing this delightful bird. Although different from what I witnessed in the trees I wanted to try my hand at creating the beauty of these birds. I used a drawing tool called the Pen Tablet and a program called Sketchbook Pro.

This was back on April 5th 2017. Then on April 18th I heard such a racket happening outside I had to jump away from the computer and see what was causing the noise. Once, outside I noticed one of the trees just full of birds all singing or calling out at once. It was a rather high pierced sound along with the road noise from the highway combined, so I added a bit of music instead to the 50 or more Waxwing birds who came for a short visit.

Nature is a glorious thing to witness and these birds lifted my spirits almost as if I were flying there with them as they took off to show their beauty to someone else in the neighborhood, hopefully they took as much delight in the sight as I did..

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What do you do when your Winter is too long?

Well, folks what did I do you ask? I went nuts and began to ring in the brand New Year with sowing seeds in January. You see I won a seed give a way on YouTube from a gardening friend in the United States. She sent me cotton seeds… Well, I was totally over the moon happy about this and so many other seeds as well.

Being over the moon happy is a state of mind most gardeners have, and it really kicks in as the brand new year of possibilities begin to naw at us, while we page through all of our seed catalogs in the dead of winter, dreaming of a grand garden in the spring. Which for me was 5 months away.

Our last frost day here in Northern Ontario, Canada is the 24th of May, but I’ve seen it snow here in June, too. So, with our short growing season and myself having the neighbors trees to contend with giving me lack of sun it is a real challenge deciding just what I can plant and bring all the way to harvest time in the Fall.

I’ve laid out the foundation of building permaculture beds which worked wonderfully last year during the long drought we experienced, and when it did rain it came down in huge buckets. Which usually beats the living tar right out of my plants in the past. But, last year the way the permaculture beds work is they drain off the water if it rains too much, and it retains the water if we have a long drought.

Our city puts us on water meters last year and now charge for every drop of water, so using my hose was out of the question. I didn’t want to wind up paying more money for homegrown vegetables than I can get at the store , even if homegrown is better for you and taste 100% better. When you have to watch every penny, (Which Canada took out of circulation a few years ago) you have to get creative as a gardener.

As it happened my beloved Birch tree died and needed to be cut down before it took out my neighbors shed or even my own fence. I can’t tell you how sad this occurrence made me for months leading up to the removal of this beautiful tree. It actually was the main reason for buying the home I’m in. Strange but true. I’ve always had a kinship with all trees and this one stole my heart.

Moms beloved Birch Tree

So, when it had to be removed the gentleman who cut it down asked if I wanted it taken away or stacked, I said just leave it where the log sections fell. I’ll take care of it. Well , he looked at my aging face and grey hair and asked again was I sure?

July 16th 2015 - Third Permaculture Bed using logs from Birch Tree

The making of my first Permaculture bed, and my beloved tree is still providing goodness for me.

My beloved tree was now going to be handled for the last time by me and only me. It had given me so much joy in the years I’ve lived here in my home, shortly after my husband passed away from a sudden heart attack at the tender age of 46. I’ve always looked at trees in a certain way, growing up in Florida looking up at all the tall pines that could sway beautifully in the winds and even withstand the gale force winds of a hurricane blowing through.

I knew if I were a tree I’d be as strong as this and be able to weather any storm that blew my way. Thinking in this manner has brought me to the place I am in at the moment, aging but weathering each storm and looking back with hindsight knowing I was correct in becoming fascinated with trees as they would help me along the paths I’d be following …

History lesson of me over, thank you for reading…

I’ve been continually striving to animate and this has also helped me get through the long cold winters here in Canada. I’ve lived up North for over 34 years and never regretted a single moment. So, I’ve animated a little short film here pertaining to cotton, the girl in the video is Wilma, Wilson the coconut ~ Plant manager’s girl friend. If, you’ve seen some of my gardening videos which I also strive to make funny, because we all just need to laugh… Wilson the coconut is my sidekick for my indoor gardening throughout the winter.

Enjoy the animation and the update of my cotton growing inside until we get our spring..

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This little picture is actually snow of course, but doesn’t it look like cotton?

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Hello World!! This is my first blog! I hope to blog about all the handy things this grandpa does around the house on a daily basis! Hope you follow me! Stay tuned…

Hello there my dear friends here on WordPress… Can you offer a fine Hello and welcome to one of our newest Blogger.. Please pay a visit to their blog and lets show them how nice a community this place is,,,,I’m sure you’ll be glad you did.. Take care and many hugs to you from Laura

Hello there my dear friends here on WordPress… Can you offer a fine Hello and welcome to one of our newest Blogger.. Please pay a visit to their blog and lets show them how nice a community this place is,,,,I’m sure you’ll be glad you did.. Take care and many hugs to you from Laura

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