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A change from landscapes today…goat snuggles! Goats can always make me smile, and this Spring, I had the pleasure of attending the Mountain Flower Dairy‘s Goat Baby Shower with Kelsea and her lovely friend Skye. Baby goats, alpacas, small children racing small goats, old trucks, fiddlers, spring flowers, a beautiful day — what more could you ask for?

The roots of my fondness for goats lie in my teenage years. At 16, I went away to Governor’s School in North Carolina – my first time away from home alone. I was gone for six (or eight?) weeks and made some lifelong friends (love you, Lisa and Beth, Mark and Ken), but I was definitely homesick during the early days. So I would take clandestine walks around the surrounding neighborhoods. And on a hill above a sidewalk situated so that it reminded me of my own home, I met a goat. He hung out at the very edge of the ivy at the top of the small hill above the wall. He would appear every day when I walked by, and we would chat. I would tell him that I was homesick and that he was handsome and share my teenage angst. He would usually eat something in response – trash, clothing he had stolen off the line, a bloom from the landscaping. I think he looked forward to seeing me as much as I looked forward to seeing him. I still remember him, and how he kept my homesickness somewhat at bay until I found my little tribe of human friends.

And so. Goats.

Goat Snuggles - 1
Boulder, Colorado.

Quote of the day: “One day I will rule the world with a goat by my side!” — Jhonen Vasquez

Daily gratitudes:
Goat cheese for dinner
A pretty new dress
The Laws of Attraction
The softness of the air today
That Issy is feeling better

Iris seem to be the thing these days here in our Never Summerland otherwise known as Colorado. They are blooming late, but they, along with the poppies and the occasional peony are blooming. Storms come and go. Mr. Man is still thinking outside the box, which is frustrating, since all of his tests (and x-rays and ultrasounds) have come back looking stellar. So I am trying to join him in his thought process, and am planning to create a slate “throne” for him. We’ll see if that helps.

Another Iris

Berthoud, Colorado.

Quote of the day: “One of the secrets of a happy life is continuous small treats.” —  Iris Murdoch

Daily gratitudes:
The light after a storm
Yesterday morning’s full moonset
The grape-scented iris that Carrie brought me
The big man skipping through Sam’s Diner with the little girl today
The light in MKL’s eyes when he looks at me

As I’ve no doubt mentioned several times, I have a tradition of reading the same book each spring. Since spring has been curiously delayed this year, no doubt having remembered some sudden and unavoidable appointment elsewhere, it has taken me a long time to finish my book this year. We have a week of rain, flood watches, and yes, even some potential snowflakes in the forecast, and I still have not reached the point in the book that makes me cry my eyes out in a sort of cleansing purge. The book is Anne of Green Gables,(go ahead, call me juvenile), originally published by L.M. (Lucy Maude) Montgomery in 1908. My copy is a little yellow paperback that I got some 40 years ago in a bookstore in Northgate Mall, a few blocks from my house. It was between a “This End Up” store and a store that sold fireplace implements and other impracticalities – from which I bought my brother a lovely Spanish sword for Christmas one year. (Thankfully, he never used it on me, though I’m sure he was mightily tempted.)

While I have read the other “Anne books”, this is the one that touches my spirit. The author has a way of weaving magic and beauty out of common images and words, even tweaking them to her own words when actually OED words just don’t suffice. I know I have a tendency to do that too, and that the way Anne sees the world is the way I see it: looking in nature and treasuring moments of beauty that are transitory yet everlasting in memory. L.M. Montgomery seems to capture all the hopes and dreams and sorrows and quiet joys of a young person’s future in her portrayal of Anne, and while I am not a “young person” chronologically, I have those same hopes and dreams and joys and sorrows, some now bittersweet memories and others anticipated with all the optimism of a teenager. And ll the enthusiasm of spring, when it finally throws off its cloak of gray and shows its true colors.

Anne of Green Gables

My version of the book is slightly shabby from numerous readings, has no copyright date, and isn’t even visible on Google images, and has a photo of a girl who someone at Tempo Books thought looked like Anne, but I disagree. I have my own vision, painted by L.M. Montgomery’s words, which is far more lovely and moontouched. And I highly recommend it if you need to bring a touch of spring and hope into your life.

Quote of the day:“Dear old world’, she murmured, ‘you are very lovely, and I am glad to be alive in you.” — L.M. Montgomery (of course)

Daily gratitudes:

Our spring has been late and wet, and though our daffodils have come and gone, as have our tulips, our iris are starting to pop out, so I’ll see if I can’t share some of those with you tomorrow. While I have no garden this year, I do have a few pots of pretty things and right now, that is enough. Mr. Man is still not doing well, but the vet came today and took some blood, so we hope to have some answers shortly, and get him back on the road to happiness. We should all be on that road, don’t you think?

Daffodils

Portland, Oregon.

Quote of the day; “Love is the extremely difficult realization that something other than oneself is real.” — Iris Murdoch

Daily gratitudes:
Big fat raindrops and rumbling thunder
A vet who is simpatico
The pressure of a warm cat against my legs under the blanket
Baby geese
That MKL fixed my lawn mower

IMG_3676

Lane County, Oregon.

Quote of the day: “Hard is trying to rebuild yourself, piece by piece, with no instruction book, and no clue as to where all the important bits are supposed to go.”– Nick Hornby

Daily gratitudes:
Warm daysMKL
Wedding thoughts
Recovering
Green

Calla Lillies

Portland, Oregon.

We love Portland. That the Farmer’s Market is held on Saturdays right in the middle of the Portland State “campus” really made it feel like an intimately integral part of the city itself. And nobody in the whole Farmer’s Market was talking or texting. They were all interacting with each other. And in Oregon, they pump your gas for you. No one has done that for me at a gas station since I was 17.

I have been far too busy to write anything but work, but some moment, when I was buried in Proposal Land, spring started to birth. I will have a bit of a break over the weekend and next week, and lots of beauty to share. But for now, please accept my humbling offering in the spirit of the end of winter.

20150318_181323 20150318_181338 20150318_181415

Spring in Colorado makes me smile.

Quote of the day: “The first real day of spring is like the first time a boy holds your hand. A flood of skin-tingling warmth consumes you, and everything shines with a fresh, colorful glow, making you forget that anything as cold and harsh as winter ever existed.” — Richelle E. Goodrich

Daily gratitudes:
Sunshine
The blanket Tamara left me
Tequila when it’s needed
Seeing the light at the end of the tunnel
A trip in the offing

And that I am so happy about marrying Michael. When I married the first time, I really wanted to get married, and I was with ex-Pat, so we got married. This time, I want to MARRY MICHAEL. Perhaps it sounds like a fine difference, but it is hugely fine and makes me radiate peaceful delight when I consider it.

From the front yard:

20140426_185948

Quote of the day: “Do not stop thinking of life as an adventure. You have no security unless you can live bravely, excitingly, imaginatively; unless you can choose a challenge instead of competence.”  —  Eleanor Roosevelt

Daily gratitudes:
Openness
A beautiful day
Kelsea
Naps
Having a breeze coming through the window in the evening

This year, we have icicles on apple blossoms. I feel like that myself sometimes – a bloom encased in frost. I have been poked and prodded and scoped and smushed this week, all for the routine testing to ensure that I am not following in my Mother’s cancer-prone footsteps. And all appears to be well. Just one more test result to go. It is nice to be emerging from this long winter, and I feel changes coming. I am trying to get a grip on whether I want some things to change, and am making steps in some new directions as a writer. I am looking forward to consolidating houses with MKL, although that is an amazingly daunting process. And so looking forward to my sweet cousin coming to visit next month. The house will never have been cleaner. I’m actually enjoying spring cleaning, and have dug a garden bed. There’s a little azalea plant, and some johnny jump-ups, daisies, and globe basil in the sunroom. And my poinsettia seems to have survived repotting – it’s over eight years old now. My boss gave it to me when my Mother died, just before Christmas in 2005.

This seems to be all random stream of consciousness, doesn’t it? Maybe it’s the snowmelt of my mind.

20140414_113947

Louisville, Colorado.

Quote of the day: “April hath put a spirit of youth in everything.” — William Shakespeare

Daily gratitudes:
Cute babies
My bed
Ginger ale
Surprise flame roses from MKL
Opportunities

 

We had our first thunderstorm this afternoon. I love thunderstorms, complete with lightning. I was inside the office, so it didn’t have the same luscious impact as it would have had I been in the Bungalow, but nevertheless, it was cleansing and a sweet portent of summer storms to come.

Colorado Columbines

Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Quote of the day: “Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts. There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature — the assurance that dawn comes after night, and spring after winter.” — Rachel Carson

Daily gratitudes:
Trip planning
Rain
Aspen eyes
Talking to E-Bro
Lilacs

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