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Take a walk in Blue Bell Woods listen to the sounds around you, of bird song and bees. Smell the flowers and the scent of Spring in the air. Every year is a new beginning and every day a blessing

"Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts." (Colossians 3:15a NIV)I would love to hear from you, if you don't have a blog you can still comment, join google it's free. I appreciate hearing from you.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Summer..............

Watching kids playing in the summer reminds me of my own summers long ago. I think I left the house in the early morning, my parents would have been at work. I would walk across the fields for hours, the whole day sometimes. I had a best friend for a time, his name was Mick Bird and he was older than me by a few years. We would be gone all day hunting rabbits (that we never caught) and climbing trees. The Blue Waters was our favourite hang out. The Blue Waters, every kid in the village knew it as that, was a disused chalk pit. One day when taking out chalk it had hit the underground water source and flooded. It made an awesome place to play. Probably not at all safe but what did we know. Our parents were raised in the same village and probably did a lot of the same things we did. We found Sticklebacks in the pure water that came from the chalk and watched them for ages. We would hunt for birds nests and learn all about them. We knew the names of all the trees and flowers. We build dens in the bushes. Where Mick lived a few doors down from me, their back garden backed onto the embankment overlooking Bedford Road. We had pathways through the trees and bushes that were thick on the sides of the banks. We could watch and not be seen. We also dug a deep hole in his back yard and put corrugated metal on the top to make an underground house.We would sit in that with candles and think we were real survivalists. Micks dad did nothing with his garden so it was an over grown mess and just wonderful for us to play in. Unlike mine that was perfection because my dad loved his garden. We built ourselves a chassis or a soapbox car. All the boys did that. Me being a girl was just a helper, I loved to go along and look for the pram wheels we used for the body of the chassis to run on. We found ours in the hedge down Thorn turn where the Gypsies had been all summer.
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I remember climbing the sheer chalk cliffs over in the working pits, we would look for fossils and rabbits there. One day Mick and his little brown dog were exploring a rabbit hole and I sat watching. There in the grass was a baby rabbit. I sat petting it and Mick turned and saw me, his shout scared the rabbit and off it ran, oh was he mad at me. I don't know if he had intended it for the stew pot or as a pet but in the end it would have gone to the pot. So that bunny lived to enjoy another day. He also got me chased by a herd of cows but I think I told that story already. As Mick got older and his interests changed we no longer hung out together but had a few memorable summers that I am grateful for. Most of my summers were enjoyed on my friends farm. I especially loved harvest time. No wonder English kids of my generation never had a weight problem as so many today do. We were never inside. Our curfew was to be in when the street lights came on. Otherwise one would hear mothers calling in their kids. No phones at all, let alone cell phones. We went by the sun and the moon and were very happy to do that. The water in the streams was pure, we drank without thought of consequences. We were hardly ever sick. We were probably hardly ever clean either. We made mud pies and climbed trees.
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The freedom we had will never be known again I don't think. That's a shame. The farmers around our village didn't care that kids wandered free over their land. We knew to shut gates and respect the crops so they had no reason to be concerned. No one sued anyone if they were hurt. So different from todays world. I loved my life.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

In the pool........

Paddling pool that is. Its been so hot and the little kids love to get wet and so....at the risk of getting mud puddles all over, I bought a 7 dollar pool and a sprinkler for them to play in. Well that was a huge success. 102_0682 The worst thing is that the noise volume is so incredible that I would think they can be heard in Alaska. Reina has the decibel level of a freight train. As you see she can put her full body into it. 102_0684 The problem is that little girls like to scream and squeal. Well Reina is 6 and Tristen is 2 1/2 and he copies everything she does. So I have a screeching screaming little boy. I never had this problem with my own boys because even though Laura was older than them, she was a Tom boy not a girly girl. Reina is a girly girl with the giggles and the Hello Kitty thing and all that. 102_0680 I despair if Tristen does not get some male companions soon (giggle)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Nap Time..............

Laura and Reina came over today so that Reina could play with Tristen. Both kids were bored and cranky. Reina is sooooo noisy and Tristen was being contrary. They went home early. Tristen came over to snuggle with me so I put my stuff down and cuddled him. I told him to close his eyes and I brushed his face to send him to sleep. Pretty soon he was asleep. naptime-1 Precious times these are and I know Alex would be jealous because she could never get him to snuggle with her. He loves to snuggle these days he likes me to scratch his head and play with his hair. He fell asleep and as soon as I could extricate myself without waking him I did so. 102_0426 So bloomin cute when they sleep arrn't they. 102_0424 He slept a good hour and when he woke up Gerry was here and he was just so excited to see him.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Father's Day...............

Anyone can father a child but it takes character and commitment to be a Dad. I remember my father and what he taught me in life through his words and actions. He was a young man when the war came. He was already in the territorial army and so was at the rank of sergeant when he entered the war. He married my mother before he went off for training. He was originally intended for the desert war but by the time they had reached India they were turned around and sent to Singapore. There they were captured and held prisoner for the remainder of the war. While his captivity with the Japanese damaged his body, and his health it did not do anything to his spirit. He never hated the Japanese, in fact he found a lot to admire about the country of his captivity. The beauty around him that could be seen from the inside of the camps, the orange groves on Mt Fugi. He worked in a factory for most of his time there. He seldom talked about the war, but over the years little bits came out. Anyway........he told me to judge a man by his actions and not his skin colour or nationality or religion. He became a born again Christian when he came here one year. He had a lot on his mind, things that happened during the war that he felt were not forgivable. He forgave himself when he learned that Christ forgave him. He is probably the one person that influenced me a great deal in my life and my one true supporter who gave me unconditional love. I know I will see him again and until then.................I love you Dad forever. 08dad

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Fun Day in June...............

We went out for the day because it was cooler today and the kids were noisy. So we felt they could let off some steam outside. We started off by going and getting some slate for my garden and then headed off to see how the house was coming along. Tim is building this house behind where I used to board my horse. I would love to live there. Anyway, Tristen was excited to see Gerry (Dah to him or Daddy depending on his mood) The two kids got really dirty playing on the piles of dirt. Laura and me got dirty looking for rocks. After we left there we went to get icecream at Moomers. It's a small place that makes their own ice cream, it has become huge........statewide known now. Great icecream sold in most small towns around here somewhere or other. Our Moomers is the original and the cows are out back so to speak. Unfortunatley they were in the back field, not close enough for the kids to see them. So on the way home we stopped at Twin Lakes Park. It has recently become a public park. Had to check it out and was pleasantly surprised. 102_0260 They are off an at it, the energy never quits. Photobucket Running, always running. Photobucket Us not so much, this is Laura enjoying a moment of quiet. Photobucket The lake is awesome. It used to be a camp for disabled kids. My husband spent some time there when he had rhumatic fever as a child. Then I think it was a boy scout camp and now its a public park. I am not sure what else they do there. The cabins and the dorm's are all still there. Anyway, looks like a place to have a picnic some day soon. 102_0269 The water is clear and pretty, there are trails around the lake that we must check out. 102_0268 Look at the tadpoles. 102_0271 The whole place has the feel of a holiday camp..............very nice and well kept. 102_0284 Some other visitors bugsjpg Then we decided to stop at Gallaghers Farm market for some goodies and Tristen got to see the cows. 102_0296 They did not enjoy us watching them eat lunch. They decided to go in the barn........sheesh!!! 102_0299 We went inside and got some goodies. I bought some Brats for supper and some ribs for tomorrow. Then a pie and asparagus, and two cartons of fresh strawberries yum!!!! 102_0300 We are so lucky to live here, fresh fruit, fresh farm veggies and meat from the farm. I forgot to ask about eggs, but I know they sell milk there. The farm market will be open at the weekend. Time to get more fresh produce. I am linking up with Mosaic Monday again, although I only have one small mosaic here on this post. Join us at The Little Red House

Monday, June 11, 2012

A prayer...........

Prayer is such a personal thing. It is in fact just talking to God. Its not supposed to be a ritual but should come from the heart. Sometimes though someone else can say what you want to say much better. Even though God would really just like to hear your own words, sometimes it makes me feel better to get what I want to say out............so many many years ago, a friend of mine AnneMarie gave me a little book called "youth Before God" neither of us were any longer Catholic and so she had given her book away, I wanted to read it and so I kept it...............This is what inspired me. ........................................................................... Photobucket "I have nothing that I can give you - except myself. But I belong to you whole and entire, for you are the Creator and I am your creature. Thus I can only freely give back what was yours from eternity. Take my body that it may serve you with all its frailty and with all its strength! It should not belong to sin, nor to earthly impulses alone. It is destined for eternal glory, and hence I offer it to you, O God! Keep it healthy as an instrument of your will. Take my soul and all its faculties which you have given me, so that my thoughts and aspirations, my actions and my conduct may be consecrated to you and your Holy will, O God! Keep far from me all selfishness and all vain striving! Take my heart with its desires an inclinations, with its love and its suffering, with anxiety and its joy! Make it pure and good as you would have it! Take all the good that I have ever done or wanted to do, all that I have suffered in patience and borne innocently, all my work, my efforts, my cares; and take too what is imperfect and bad in me and form it according to your will! Thus I give to you my whole self to use according to your will." Amen god-1-3

Sunday, June 10, 2012

To the Beach....

It was well into the 90 degrees today. We went to Peterson Park for a picnic. We didn't see too many other people around. That was excellent. Petersonpk We decided to eat first so unpacked our picnic. The kids didn't want to eat. Too eager to get to the water. Peterson Park is on a bluff way above Lake Michigan. The beach has loads of stones and is fun if you want to search for treasures. After we had walked a bit we went on to a small town and small beach in Omena. There were only a few people there so the kids had fun. beachCollage We did have a little bit of a moment when we left but Ice cream took care of that. We had just enough cash between us to get an ice cream each. The kids fell asleep on the way home. Just as well we noticed Reina. Not too safe in that seat belt. We woke her up because we were laughing so hard.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Celebrations.............

The end of a week of celebration in Great Britain and the Commonwealth. 60 years on the Throne of England and the head of state or Queen of so many more countries. Loved by many, respected by most..... even the non Royalists. Elizabeth 2nd.... she is one of the longest reigning monarchs. I believe she is the backbone of the country, she rules as a figure head they say, but she is so much more. I believe she is far more involved than people give her credit for. She has served with so many prime ministers and been involved in world affairs far longer than a politician. She works harder than most people would ever appreciate or imagine. It is not a 9 to 5 job. Its a lifelong commitment to her people. She has stepped up to the plate when her father died unexpectedly and did so without reservation. She was nowhere near the Crown until her uncle abdicated leaving her father as King. She took on the job willingly and with dedication to her people and country. This at a very young age. I can not say how very much I admire her. young-queen-elizabeth-ii Elizabeth was the eldest daughter. She was and still is a beautiful woman. There was something innocent in her looks as a young woman. Elizabeth11 My family as well as many others got our first TV in time for the Coronation and viewed with neighbours who did not have one. queenelizabethiibycecilbeatonbuckinghampalace2june1953cvictoriaandalbertmuseumlondonsmallersize3 Queen-Elizabeth-II-corona-008 This weeks celebrations have brought back so many memories for so many people. I sure hope the Duke of Edinburgh will recover quickly. I am sure that she misses him and even though she was stoic all through the celebrations, she could not help but have him on her mind. Photobucket All of her family were there to support her. The crowds adored her. The concert in her honour was performed by people who she has knighted as well as new artists. Paul McCartney, Cliff Richards, Tom Jones, Grace Jones, Shirley Bassey and many others were there. Her son Prince Charles gave a wonderful speech. I think she was moved by that several times. QueenElizabethIIandthePrinceofWaleslookattheHealingGarden So much pomp and circumstance that is done so well by the British. Look at the horses manes. Awesome. Camilla got the seat of honour next to the Queen. How about that. Nice to see that she is accepted. image She looks so genuinely happy, and so pretty in pink. queen-elizabeth-II She has a wonderful hat maker 88G5 A style completely her own, lovely in blue as well. Queen-Elizabeth_1 She is always regal. queen_elizabeth_ii

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Boardman Nature center................

We are very fortunate here in Traverse City. The powers that be are determined to preserve much of the natural lands around the river and the woods and beaches here. The Boardman river has a small dam that was used for power. They are taking it out and allowing the area to go back to the way it should be. Its a slow progress but, they have made nature trails in the area and a nice Nature center. We went yesterday to go for a walk. The water level is going down on Boardman pond. We saw a man fly fishing. 101_0062-1 I have no idea if he caught anything. We entered some woods along the side of the river. We were fortunate to go by when we did. A Cedar Waxwing was caught in some fishing line in the bush and because Laura got close,( she was intending to free her) she managed to pull free. We took the fishing line to the nature center later and asked that they make an exhibit to show what can happen. I know that most fishermen are not going to just leave their line in the trees, and if they do its without thinking but it can have dire consequences for wildlife. So fishermen please be aware. There were some pretty Iris in the damp areas by the nature center. 101_0049 101_0058 More pretty Iris. 101_0054 The swans were enjoying ducking down and getting bottom foods, with the water levels being down I bet they got loads of good stuff, swan Do you remember popping these on the back of your hand when you were a kid? 101_0074 Laura and Tristen looking down at the river........it was getting quite warm now so we headed back 101_0070 Natures wonders........look at this. 101_0055 We were looking for Monarch Caterpillar in the Butterfly garden. They love Milkweed.People now cultivate it just so that the Monarchs have a place to breed. I have picked up some and its growing in my garden now. When it blooms it smells divine. We didn't stay to look for the Caterpillars because there was a school party there. We wanted to get out on the trails before they did. Not to worry, they were still there when we returned from our walk. I think they were having a picnic. This is a Monarch caterpillar mikweed This is the wild Milkweed. It smells like Lilac. The butterfly is not a Monarch but you can see a tiny caterpillar besides it milkweeds I am thankful to live in an area where conservation is important to the citizens. The last two pictures are from Photobucket, all the others are my own