Friday, April 27, 2012

Let's go camping

You don't have to twist my arm when I hear those words. After a long winter, and spring snow storm is no longer in sight, we can't wait to load up the V/W and head for the hills. We drive through prairie land, vistas wide and open. In just a short time, this scenic drive takes us up into the pines, to our favorite get-away. Check out this view! It never lets us down. And, if we're lucky, we'll see this guy again. Sigh... I'm so ready. Are you?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Bundles of sage

Spring. It's almost magical really, the way it works.The snow melts, the sun shines a little more, temperatures rise, and then... there they are. All those happy birds!  Sprouts shooting up from the ground, buds on the trees are opening up. Peeking greens, yellows and lilacs. And, fresh sagebrush. Moist and fragrant, silvery blue sage .
Early this morning , my good friend and I roamed the hills on a quest for the perfect sage leaves to bundle into smudge sticks. Sage is cleansing and healing, but not only is smudging a therapeutic ritual,  being with my friend out in nature soothes my soul too. We carried cups of good coffee, along with clippers and canvas bags, and talked and laughed like buddhas. A snake slithered by, and bones of a deer were lying weathered and white, next to our sagebrush jackpot. As we sat down and wrapped our bundles in bright colored thread, we exchanged stories of bits and pieces of our lives. There was talk of upcoming camping and backpacking trips, where the good bike trails are, who sells the best coffee beans, the movie's Grey Gardens and Enlighten Up. Topics on music, travel, funerals, Yoga and cats. It was all sprinkled with laughter and sunshine. And did I mention how good the coffee was?

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

All God's creatures got soul

I fly for the animals. As you can see, there's an animal on the end of the wing of the plane. Recently, on a flight to L.A. I flew with a racoon. I'm on my way to Tucson and the Arctic Fox is staring at me.
Frontier is my new favorite airline. Considering my disdain for flying, at least I've got the animals to keep me company, and calm my nerves. Well, sort of.
I'm obsessed with animals. Every kind. Wild and domestic. Feathers and fur. Dolphins and whales and brook trout and beavers. They all grace this earth for one reason or another. Our cats bring such joy and companionship to our home. For those of you who have a furry feline purring in your ear right now, you now what I'm talking about.
The blue spruce in our yard houses a nest of great horned owls. Their hooting is music to my ears, and their pellets? Well,  those are gifts the leave for me in the yard.
     Our bird feeder is quite popular with sparrows, and sparrow hawks, blue jays, colorful finch's, cedar wax wings, mourning doves, and my personal favorite, the black capped chickadee. They are curious and friendly little birds. Early in the morning I wake to the sweet song of the robin.
     The other day, a wild turkey took a nap under our neighbor's dogwood tree. Later on, I watched him get up and continue down the street. It's not such a rare sight to have deer passing through the neighborhood either. Bucks come down from the mountain during hunting season. They are aware of what month it is on the calendar.
     Then there's the antelope. Wyoming has more antelope than people, and they are an icon of the state. They are one of the fastest animals, running 45mph! Their eyes are huge and beautiful. In fact, the largest eyes vs. body weight of any mammal in north America.
     Those are some of the creatures I'm fortunate to see from day to day. I feel a connection and dedication to the animals, in whatever way I can.  So, in a way, I live for the animals, too.
                                    I wonder, do you feel a connection to animals? If so, in what way?

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

I go to California every day...

Well, not every day. It depends on what coffee mug I choose that morning. More often than not, my organic Italian roast coffee gets poured into the Cali mug. It's bright and sunny with pictures of surfers and waves and, of course, ochre yellow sunbursts. When my brother was here visiting, he saw the mug in my hand and said, "that looks like a happy cup to drink out of." He feels the same way about the beach as I do. You see, when we were growing up, we'd spend every weekend at Corona del Mar swimming and playing in the sand. Golden skinned, happy children. Yes, once you've had a taste of living near the ocean, you never let it go.
     Then there's my Taos cup. There's a special place in my heart for New Mexico. I remember the first time I walked around Taos and Santa Fe. I knew I'd be back again and again. It's true. I celebrate my birthday every year by taking myself to New Mexico. The Sangre de Cristo mountains, Mabel Dodge Luhans house, the unique shops and historic museums, The Native American culture. And, oh my goodness, the art! There are more art galleries than I can count! But all worth admiring  and being inspired by. So, as summer nears, I believe I will be seeing more of my Taos mug in the morning.
     I have a cute brown, perhaps handmade, woodsy cup that I take on camping trips. It has moose and pine trees around it. I like it because it's not smooth and it  doesn't feel manufactured. It's perfect for sitting around a campfire waiting for a moose or a deer or a bison to  come and visit my camp. I've witnessed many unexpected creatures in the wild. In Wyoming they are called "The Locals." 
     P.S. I had some great pictures of the cups that go along with this story but the silly tablet I'm working on is causing me grief! For some reason it's not allowing me to add my photos. Whaa???? Hopefully in the near future I'll be able to share with you those groovy mugs and other photos that make my heart sing.  Until then, peace and love beads.