Anticipating the August Upper Peninsula Book Tour!

Delight

Delight

OK, I can almost hear you wondering.

What?  She’s gone and wrote a book and didn’t tell us about it?

Rest easy, dear reader.  When and if I write a book you’ll surely know six months in advance!

However, I am participating in an upcoming book tour in our fair peninsula in a few weeks, believe it or not.  Let me share the exciting details.

Any of you know or remember my blogging buddy, Suzi Banks Baum?  She wrote a guest post here back in 2011 called Meet Suzi:  The compass of her soul points north.

Later, she asked me to contribute to an anthology called:  An Anthology of Babes:  36 Women Give Motherhood a Voice.  Suzi edited the book and it hit the shelves in 2013.

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Posted in July 2014 | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 28 Comments

Slow down, you’re movin’ too fast, you got to make the morning last…

Sitting in a quiet house this morning sipping hot dark coffee with soy creamer from a deep blue mug.  Not running hither and yon, caught up in the what-must-be-done-next.

Excuse me, I will wander out on the deck to give you a weather report from our Little House in the Big Woods one-quarter mile from Lake Superior’s lapping shores.

I’ve returned.  Blue skies smiling at you, overhead, above the green jungle-like canopy. Birds squawking, unseen, forest calls and chirps, hidden ones.  In deep summer the winged ones abandon the bird feeder and join the wild spirit back in the crooked arms of maple and poplar trees.  They’re raising their young and, like the crows and ravens, introducing the new fledglings to the world with deep croaks and cacophony.

It’s 57 degrees right now, heading upward all day, so the forecasters hint.  Summertime, smilin’ at you.

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Posted in July 2014 | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

“I don’t like that man. I must get to know him better.”

Honest Abe

Honest Abe

Recently a friend shared this quote from Abraham Lincoln:  “I don’t like that man.  I must get to know him better.”

I like that quote.

For many years it was my mantra.

“I don’t like (fill in the blank)…therefore, I must get to know it (or him) better.”

Our usual mode of operation is to think “I don’t like that person.  I should get far far away from her!”

Yet what do we learn when we move closer?

Usually we discover common bonds.  We discover that what we don’t like about that man is what we don’t like about ourselves.  We discover that, perhaps, we’re not as separate as we might think.

In every despicable person or situation, a pearl so often shines.  Shall we take the time to look for it?  Or shall we, unlike Honest Abe, move toward rejecting, pushing away, because it hurts too darn much to spend the time to find common ground, places where we agree?

Yes, dear friend, there are times to move away.  There are times to make a stand not to be hurt, injured, thrust in the fire.

Yet, more times than not, our enemy contains our friend.  It’s just a matter of digging deep enough to find common ground.

How many of you have discovered this?

(Thanks for the inspiration, dear Amy!)

 

Posted in July 2014 | Tagged , , , , , , | 28 Comments

My challenges with wood splitter motors and social media

Me on the tractor pulling the wood splitter. If you squint you can see that I'm pulling the aforementioned splitter.

Me on the tractor pulling the wood splitter. If you squint you can see that I’m pulling the aforementioned splitter.

Here is what I am not posting on Facebook:  Our wood splitter motor, RIP, died yesterday.  For five years he thwacked hearty logs in halves and quarters.  We’ll miss him dearly.  He spewed oil and gas fumes upon us as we worked, but he rarely missed a beat. Until yesterday.  

Before you all start weeping and sending consoling comments, never fear.  We knew the motor was a’dyin’ for many months.  Barry was a tad upset when the despairing moment arrived.  He muttered dire forecasts about the cost of a new motor and the effects of our wood-splitting delay.

But the Universe proved helpful and found us a new motor for under $300, so we should be back sweating and heaving logs and wood splitting before long.

I did not post on Facebook:  Hey, we found a new wood splitter motor! or The bottom wire of our garden electric fence broke.  Or Hey, we harvested our first green onions and lettuce.  Or, Guess what, my friend Ruth dropped by with a freshly washed bag of arugula and spinach!  Or:  The crows are going wild behind the house, yapping and cawing and screaming.  What’s up with crows?

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Posted in July 2014 | Tagged , , , , , , , | 70 Comments

Don’t be afraid to scale down beside waterfalls.

Standing by the Mouth of the Huron River

Standing by the Mouth of the Huron River

I could tell you stories.

Every walk in nature writes a novella.

If you look carefully you can find the characters, the plot, the resolution.

Would you like to read four short stories?  (I promise they shall be short.)  At least I will try.

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Posted in July 2014 | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 34 Comments

Tender

Slate river stones

Slate river stones

Goodness, the last two weeks have flown by like an eagle diving for lake trout. (OK, that’s may be the weirdest metaphor I’ve ever typed.)

Goodness, it’s so very challenging when our grown children fly off into the friendly skies after visiting for an extended time, leaving us walking along on the river of our lives.

One wonders what to do next.

One looks at at least one hundred photographs depicting river walks, beach walks, wood-splitting expeditions, cribbage games.

I’m at loose ends. How to return to the routine after two weeks with a daughter who has led one along river paths, over waterfalls (literally) and along secluded beaches?

May I simply show you a single photo of river rocks along the Slate River and wish you a Happy 4th of July weekend?

With tender heart, Kathy

Posted in July 2014 | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 60 Comments

Whimsy in the Upper Peninsula

So Karma suggested a photo challenge:  Whimsy. (Click on the link to find her challenge.)

My heart immediately melted because I LOVE whimsy.

What, you ask, is whimsy?

Google says:

whim·sy
ˈ(h)wimzē/
noun
  1. playfully quaint or fanciful behavior or humor.
    “the film is an awkward blend of whimsy and moralizing”
    • a whim.
      plural noun: whimsies; plural noun: whimseys
    • a thing that is fanciful or odd.
      “the stone carvings and whimsies”

Whimsy, in my whimsical opinion, wakes us up from the everyday.  It claims us from the ordinary, or it takes the ordinary and subverts it into something delightful (which it already is, although we so often don’t see it).  Something unexpected.  Something odd, fanciful, chuck full of dreams and poetry and Aunt Elizabeth’s thimbleberry jam.

Way over there by Shot Point, somewhere betwixt and between Munising and Marquette, halfway between Au Train and Harvey, here in our fair Upper Peninsula of Michigan, lies a magical playground of Junkyard Art.

And now, some whimsical art!

And now, some whimsical art!

Whimsy abounds.

No, whimsy plays and sings and dances in the sandy woods.

Please enjoy Lakenenland.  Tom Lakenen has sculptured his way into many hearts as they travel along the Lake Superior shores.

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Posted in June 2014 | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 33 Comments