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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.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Mad dogs..............

"Mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun" is part of a song lyric by Noel Coward. It feels about right this year here in Michigan. This Englishman (woman) is staying inside in the central air. Even walking from car to store is a drain on the energy levels. This has to have been the worst summer ever for heat around here. Or maybe I am just feeling it more these days. I would not care so much if it was not also humid. I know my poodles do not want to go outside. They will use the piddle pads rather than go outside. I feel so bad for the wild life. 100_0283 Please help as much as you can. Would you? I have dishes of various sizes and shapes. The above picture is a hanging glass dish and I see bees and butterflys sipping there. I have a concrete bowl that sits among the ground cover in the shade and little critters can sip there. I have three bird bath/fountains that I keep full all the time. Photobucket I love to see the birds cooling off in the bird baths and sprinklers. They love it when I spray the garden and I wet the leaves on the trees. They can cool off under the water sprinkles. Photobucket If you are caretakers of large animals that live outside be sure to have plenty of water. Especially horses, they need to have shelter also. Somewhere to get out of the sun or they will get sunburns. Dogs who live outdoors need constant cold water and shade. I hate to see a dog kept outside in any case. They need to live inside with you. If you EVER see a dog left in a car, treat the situation as you would if it were a child. Call the police, break the window if you need to and if by some chance they dare to prosecute you I can guarantee that if you get it in the paper people will help you pay any fine. Its worth it to me to save the life, you must decide yourself what you are willing to do. It is a horrendous death and as far as I am concerned I don't care how long you are going to be gone, accidents happen, people get delayed and it can be too late to save your furry friend. DO NOT DO IT.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Walter Pigeon................

One day back when I was working at the bank, I was on my way home at night and a pigeon flapped his way across the road in front of my car. He was injured, probably hit by a car. I went home and got my daughter and we went back in search of the pigeon. We found and caught him. He had a broken wing. Next day we took him to our vet who tried to set the wing. It was not a success. So it looked like the chap was done for. I called the wildlife place and asked if we could bring him there but all they would do would be to put him down. He was not "wildlife" That did not seem fair. I thought they could keep him to allow for a recovery and set him free. Well...........that began the story of Walter Pigeon. He lived with us for 15 years. (Note to self: Do not pick up any more damaged pigeons) My husband built a cage for him that we lined with newspaper to change out daily. It had a lid on it that lifted off and we set him in the window so he could see outside. It was large and had a perch. As time went by it became obvious that the wing would not heal and walter would not fly again. So what to do.............we had at that time a deck on the back of the house that was attached to a back enclosed porch with windows. We had two rabbits at the time who were living out there. We would let walter out of his cage and out onto the deck. He got along ok with the rabbit and the poodle. He would come inside the house and sit on the stairs and look outside on days he could not go outside. One day he came running in all panicked and I went out to see a hawk sitting on the telephone lines. Poor Walter thought he was to be lunch. Some days when it was hot out I would put a big roasting pan out and fill it with water with the hose running into it, Walter would take a bath and a shower and have a great old time. We never really handled him a lot because we had thought he could be free again some day, but that was never to be. He was not afraid of us but did not enjoy being held. He knew he was safe in the house and had no problem seeking refuge when he needed to. Some nights he didn't want to come in but we had to insist. He would be very happy sitting in his cage looking out the window on days he could not go out and for most of the winter months. Who would believe he would have lived so long, long after the rabbits were gone. I don't have a picture on my computer of Walter but he looked very much like the one in the picture. Except Walter was prettier, he had the green band around his neck. We don't see many pigeons around any more. They used to hang out by the grainery down by McGoughs feed store but I think the powers that be got rid of them, we don't see them on 8th st any more sitting in the road, or wheeling and diving overhead. I miss them. Pigeon Walter was put to sleep on Dec 2nd 2000. I don't know the normal life span of a wild pigeon but for what it was, Walter had a good life. He loved his food and had stopped eating. I took him to the vet and it was decided to put him peacefully to sleep. His crop was not working anymore or some such thing so I could not let him suffer. Sort of ironic really because we had just bought him a brand new cage that cost be 100 dollars. Should have kept him in his box that he loved so much. This is a poem I wrote when he died.
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Walter Pigeon
Walter Pigeon died today... Shed a tear with me. He lived with us for 15 years, Now he's flying free. No bars confine his spirit now, No more broken wing. His body's healed, his spirit too. He's where the Angels sing. Goodbye old friend, My sometime love. Goodbye old Pigeon, My little grey dove.
JKS

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Potty Training........

Here I am at 66 and I am potty training my child. Yes he is my child now. Tristen is 2 1/2, he will be 3 in September. We want to get him in preschool for two days a week beginning in September. He has to be trained by then and so we have officially launched into the real deal. ( For those who do not normally follow, Tristen is my great grandson) ......... we have tried on and off to train him but he was not ready. He learned to "pee" in the potty but was just not into it. When he decided he wanted to take it on he went right for the "big potty". We bought him a nice little one but he would only carry it around and play with it. Useless. So since I went ahead and enrolled him in preschool I went out and bought him some really cool undies. Then Vicki brought me a whole bunch of Tobins that he had grown out of, small ones. Tristen was thrilled with those and wanted to wear them........ so we made that descision and just put him in underwear. We had tried pull ups. What a pain they are. When they have an accident well, its a mess and just not worth the effort. He does wear one at night. So here we are about two weeks into the training period and he is doing so well. He only peed in his pants a couple of times when outside and forgot. That's no big deal. He did pee out the door one time and used the dogs piddle pads on another occasion but what could I say?. I just directed him to the correct location. He decided on his own that he would poop in the big pottie in our room. He gets a prize each time he is successful. He tries very hard. At first he was a little confused and didn't seem to know when he needed to go. As he was wearing the older undies I just threw them away when he soiled them. He didn't like that and has been more careful. Gerry found a little video on potty training. He was enthralled with it. I have not seen it but watched him watching it. It talked about his body and what did what. It made sense to him I guess because he has not looked back. He had one accident but has so far realized when he needed to go and has gone. He wants my husband to go with him at this point and Gerry is very patient and goes with him and waits with him. He likes the company I think because he had me go with him when Gerry was not here. Well who would have thought this would be the highlight of my day when a little boy poops and we have a lot of high fives and cheers and claps. There you are, life is strange. When my children were small I remember telling Jason he was a big boy now and didn't need a diaper. He said "OK" and that was the end of it. He never had an accident. Justin wanted to be like his brother and followed along soon after. Mind you, I did get a few phone calls around that time. My neighbour called to tell me the two little boys were peeing up the side of my garage. It must be a boy thing? I am sure Tristen will soon be watering my garden if I don't watch out.
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pottytraining We make the potty training more complicated than it is. Be sure the child knows what you are talking about. Once he/she understands then its a go..........don't bother with pull ups. Set aside a week that you can be with the child and watch them. Put on underwear and no pants and just wait. Accidents will happen and that's how they learn. They wont like it, the feeling of being wet and uncomfortable. Don't yell, don't get mad encourage them to go to the toilet every time you think of it. Forget a potty, go for the big one haha. Keep reminding them to go and pee. Each child is different but once they understand they will be happy to be clean and dry and will cooperate once they get the hang. That first week life will revolve around the bathroom. Once they understand and know when they want to go then its time to move on.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Family Reunion 2012.......

We have often missed the family reunions, mainly my fault I suppose. Let me explain. I am an only child and married a man who is one of 18. If you have followed my blog you know this. I find it difficult being in crowds and especially ones where I don't know people. Getting to actually know 18 siblings, 18 spouces and children for me was am impossible task as a young person in a strange country. I had nothing in common. As years went on I did find a few of my sister in laws that I loved and as my kids grew older it became easier for me to go with them. Well........now there are not so many of us, mainly the siblings and some of their kids but not the large crowds of the parents family, friends and so on. This year was great. Tristen just had so much fun. There were several kids his age and Reina's age and they played great together. 100_0196 Tristen and Reina made friends quickly. 100_0188 Tristen tried his hand at everything in the play area. I caught him swinging off some bars and dropping to the ground. Scared the wits out of me but he was off and running and had a great old time. I did make Gerry go over and watch him on the bars as he had never climbed before. 100_0190 He joined in when they did the kids games, he is not at all shy. He also knows when then camera is on him just like his mother did. He is outgoing and friendly. 100_0199 All my grandchildren were outgoing, maybe it was the Marine Corps life that did it. Or more likely the school system these days. Not like when I was in school and froze like a rabbit in headlights if called upon to say or do anything. I will be sure that Tristen grows up enjoying the company of other kids and being outgoing as he seems inclined.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

House of Windsor......................

King_George_V_1911_color-crop On this day in 1917, King George V declared- "Now, therefore, We, out of Our Royal Will and Authority, do hereby declare and announce that as from the date of this Our Royal Proclamation Our House and Family shall be styled and known as the House and Family of Windsor, and that all the descendants in the male line of Our said Grandmother Queen Victoria who are subjects of these Realms, other than female descendants who may marry or may have married, shall bear the said Name of Windsor" It was founded by King George V by royal proclamation on 17 July 1917, when he changed the name of his family from the German Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (a branch of the House of Wettin) to the English Windsor. Edward VII and, in turn, his son, George V, were members of the German ducal House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha by virtue of their descent from Albert, Prince Consort, husband of Queen Victoria. The King decided to change it due to the anti German sentiment of that time. From 1917 to 1919, George V also stripped 15 of his German relations—most of whom belonged to the House of Hanover—of their British titles and styles of prince and princess. I bet they were thrilled.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

St Swithins Day

St Swithun’s day if thou dost rain For forty days it will remain St Swithun’s day if thou be fair For forty days ’twill rain na mair * stswithin St. Swithun was a Saxon Bishop of Winchester. He was born in the kingdom of Wessex and educated in its capital, Winchester. He was famous for charitable gifts and building churches. Now we associate him with rain. swithun As the Bishop lay dying, he asked to be buried outside, where he would be trodden on and rained upon. For nine years they honoured this wish, but later the monks of Winchester attempted to remove his remains and place in a splendid shrine inside the cathedral. They did this on 15 July 971. According to legend there was a heavy rain storm. This led to the belief that if it rains on St Swithin's Day (July 15th), it will rain for the next 40 days in succession, and a fine 15th July will be followed by 40 days of fine weather. One can only hope that this year in particular it will be a fine and cloudless day in England because they have had rain so far most of the year.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Oh Deer............

When we were out the other day we took a few back roads. We always look for deer. I don't know how to explain how I feel, its such a privilege to me to see wild things up close. I thank God for every experience. I have this connection with animals and love them so much. So when we came across this little girl, I first took a picture through the car window. Just so I got a picture. We stopped and I got this shot 104_0196 we opened the car windows so we could try for a better picture and my husband got this one 104_0198 It was the best for lighting because of where she stood. She watched us as we eased forwards until we were right near her. She continued to eat and mosey around like we were not even there. She sensed we were not a threat. 104_0202 Bit by bit we got closer and she did turn but didn't hurry............ 104_0203 She must have been having lunch and didnt want to interrupt it deer1 She went to the trees and ate again for all the world like she just didn't care. 104_0205 Then she wandered out of sight and we headed off home. deer2 Bye bye Bambi and thank you for making our afternoon so pleasant.......wishing you a long and healthy life.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Material things...........

There has been a dramatic change in feelings since the "women's movement" .......I suppose that goes without saying really. When I read about my Grandparents and Great Grandparents I recognize how completely self centered we (meaning women) have become. They lived in a time that the man was supposedly the head of the house, but a wise woman knew she was the one who ran things. Each played a part. The woman raised the family and kept the house while the man worked to bring home the money to put food on the table. He would also supplement that income by any means possible.Odd jobs maybe or even poaching. After the first war the role of women changed and after the 2nd war there was no going back. Women had joined the work force and had a taste of freedom. Prior to that they did work from home, in our area it was plaiting for the hat industry. Children worked. Some as young as 4 years old. I got my information from the census and other documents while doing family research. Everyone was involved in family matters. When my Grandmothers friend died her husband had to leave and look for work, he took his son with him leaving his daughter with my Grandmother. She raised her. People didn't think anything of this, it was just what one did. When my grandparents lived in the High St in Houghton Regis, there came a time when the house was not big enough for the new child and so the older ones moved in with a neighbour. People helped each other. That's what people did. So today............what now? I believe that this life is not all there is. God does promise that we will be rewarded in Heaven for what we give up now. Well, I do not do things for that reward but I do believe that some people who have everything now and do not share with less fortunates, then they have their reward now. They have their rewards with those physical things and material goods that they have in their lives. More important to me is eternity. If I am wrong then I have lived a better life in any case and maybe been better for it. Material things are not that important to me even though I may enjoy what I do have. card-front1 I didn't mean that to sound as though I am against material things. I am certainly not. I think what I am trying to say is that (me included) tend to work outside the home to bring in more money to be able to get and do more things. It's only been since I have been at home after retirement and watching small children, and now raising my great grandson that I realize what I missed. I didn't work until my kids were in school all day, so I was lucky in that respect. Now I am so enjoying Tristen, the time I spend with him is enlightening and refreshing for me. I realize that what he will remember is the cuddles, and snuggles, the walks in the woods and the time we spend together. Not what I buy him. I do not have regrets they are a waste of time, but I am glad that I have seen something of what I missed before in what now seems another lifetime.