The header photo captures Mitzvah and Chase exploring weeds beside an irrigation canal that streams for a mile through a nearby BLM. Taking Chase there to run and swim is one way of working off his incredible energy. His best buddy, Mitzvah, has plenty of stamina and holds her own with him.
They are a cute pair at the stream. Chase is in and out or leaping it, and she sniffs along its edges.
Yesterday, I took slower steps and watched for newly-flowering plants. Finally, our late spring invites the lovely Wild yellow Irises, tiny Forget-Me-Nots, and flowering clovers to line the steam.
Also starting to pop on the desert side are delightful red monkey flowers, sedges, and newly springing types still too small to identify. Our next walk will be through more of the desert side when hopefully, those tiny plants will be budding more.
Until the next outing, a brief goodbye to those plants and buddies near the waterway.
Dear Friends: A little stroll often fills the soul. Diana
A customer in HD’s tool department asked for hand planers. He chose all three sizes at the display and said he woodworks using only hand tools. When he asked if the store carries a “spoke planer, I wondered what he’d do with one. He explained that it’s an old tool that craftsmen in the early 1800s used in building wagon wheels. He said he wishes to work in the elemental way of early Oregon prairie craftsmen.
That customer’s name is Randy, and he actually looks the part but is cleaner and tidier than the gold miners in old photos. He’s tall and slender, with a shaped well-groomed beard, wears glasses, and speaks in an educated manner. He loves the television series, “Craftsman’s Legacy.”
He described his current home on 1,000 acres near the Steens Mountains in Eastern Oregon, saying he was thrilled to move into its bare-bones, two-room cabin. He built a bed, a table, and chairs, a stool, and a bench and created lots of wall shelving. His cabin, with wood heating and a water storage tank, resembles an early 1800s dwelling. He adds almost sheepishly, having installed basic plumbing and some solar panels for telephone and television.
He’s gathering tools for his next project, a coffee table. He hasn’t chosen which wood he’ll use but has been considering maple.
I listened longer to Randy than was sales-efficient in a busy department. But that’s how I like to work. I enjoy and appreciate dreams and ambitions, especially those of folks who can articulate their interests comfortably and self-confidently.
Dear Friends: Our inner selves much admire past-times human ingenuity. Diana
In the header photo, Chase runs freely in a BLM, enthusiastically and unstoppable. Our path has two different sides. One is a desert where he runs and climbs its rocky protrusions. The other is a canal-side where he jumps water or plunges into and out of it. He’s an enthusiastic swimmer.
When Chase isn’t being a headache, he’s great fun. Following are some sightings.
On the rocks:
Loving the canal:
Checking on me:
He really can focus :
It seems forever that I’ve been stumped by not knowing how to transfer photos effectively from an iPhone to a computer. After quite a while of working through that problem, this bit of photojournalism reintroduces my constant handful, sweet Chase, at fifteen months old.
Dear Friends: On a not early-to-work day, I will share more about Chase. Diana
Most days, my schedule for showing up at work has me getting there very early. Those clock-in times are way less satisfying than the coin’s other side, or leaving work early. My free afternoons allow for working on the property which needs lots of TLC.
In afternoons. while working around the property, I consider pausing for an hour or so and using that time to nourish my inner self. However, it’s difficult to pause in the middle of doing physical work. My obsession to complete a project or task overcomes my wanting to relax and read, create, or simply snooze a bit. I must rework this mindset because my strong belief is that nourishing the brain is as essential as nourishing the body.
Today, for sure, I’ll take that wished pause, and if necessary, make myself quit laboring physically. My target will be a one-hour pause without a plan, except for dedicating permission to my inner self to do whatever.
Dear Friends: These June days are beautiful, but still chilly; what’s with that! Diana
My twenty-year-old riding mower bombed out the other day. Just as its job was ending, it stopped cutting grass. Its blade belt had got knocked off. The old machine had been past-due for a tune-up, and now it’s busy springtime with warming weather encouraging locals to tackle yard work. Experience teaches that in early spring, mower repairs may take weeks.
Like everyone’s weeds, mine are growing like crazy and soon will need mowing again. An alternative to waiting for a mower repair would be investing in a new battery-operated riding mower, but the ticket prices are show-stoppers. Another choice was easier. I’m a former seller of lawn mowers in HD’s Garden Department and knew a battery-operated lawn mower could tackle the needs on my property.
While my old mower is away for repairs, I will fill the gap with my new battery-operated lawn mower. It’s capable of cutting more than an acre on one charge.
Later today, I’ll test this mower on the mightily challenging weeds along a busy roadway at my property line. The mower is self-driving with two- or four-wheel drive and variable speed choices. Its four blades are height-adjustable, and I can choose to bag or mulch the cuttings.
Dear Friends: I’ll not allow any grass to grow under my feet! Diana
My childhood mentor and big sister, Elaine, was born on May 31, but always celebrated this date as her birthday. I never knew why she insisted on that, but it’s just one of many head-scratchers she insisted on for reasons known only to herself.
Although Elaine passed away nearly four years ago, she’s always big in my memories. Back in the day and often as my stand-in mother, her guidance was opinionated, independent, and creative. I adopted many of Elaine’s passions and like her figured out how to make them work for me.
Later and toward the anniversary of her passing in late November when she’s in my mind’s forefront, I’ll write more about her. Meanwhile, Happy Birthday, Elaine!
Dear Friends: I’m due at work by 6 a.m. and now must start moving. Diana
Oh my gosh, this month has flown past. So will June, which will take us to the year’s halfway point. We recognize that as people age, they perceive that time passes faster. These days to me, time flies even faster and as if on steroids.
Maybe that’s related to the distance between one’s birth year and the present time. Our learning, experience, and awareness histories are major in information processing.
Passing time speed might be related to communication technologies, immediately updating our awareness of local and wide-world events. Rapid daily and hourly communications alter perceptions, including our sense of time.
Instant global communications have us processing new information over short timelines, shifting our perceptions daily and hourly. Thus, speedier mental processing may affect how we feel time passing. To me, now flying faster and as if on steroids.
Dear Friends: All this to say, to May, “Goodbye month!” Diana
Busy day today. It feels good to have accomplished many routine chores earlier than usual. I’ve fed the horses, chickens, and my goat; penned my elderly chicken outside, and she’s digging for bugs; got Peaches busy with a banana; and have the garden hose set to watering. All good, and ahead, my farrier is coming to trim hoofs, and early this afternoon, via Facetime, a visit with my forever friend who lives in Kansas City.
At last, Central Oregon’s all too brief spring has arrived. These days are lovely, with young plants looking like they’re thriving and thousands of birds feeding newborns or tending to eggs near hatching. Now’s the time for being out and getting ahead of summer’s heat soon to arrive. I assume most locals agree because they’re transforming HD’s Garden Department into the store’s highest-grossing unit.
I have today and tomorrow off. After charging my most powerful camera’s battery, I’ll find places with cool spring sights and capture them. Achieving the best images will be as easy as merely looking around.
All those and much more are what’s to love about spring!
Happy Memorial Day! I’m scheduled to work and must be there at 5 a.m. One good part will be becoming free in the late morning and returning home; another is that this afternoon’s weather should be beautiful.
About remembering on this day. I have over time, lost important family members. My grandmother, father, mother, and two older sisters. I cannot visit their graves because my father and sister are in Kansas City, and my grandmother and mother are in Los Angeles.
When mom passed the timing was when I couldn’t have anticipated ever leaving LA, which eventually happened. The last to pass was my middle sister, who during her final years was in my care. Her ashes are in Central Oregon.
Today, I reflect on these five, wishing to sit beside their resting places to remember and reflect. Memorial Days mightily invite such wishes, but more mildly so does every day.
Today borrowing from Jewish Tradition, I will light memorial candles. Over several days their flames will beckon my conscious mind to remember and reflect. This feels doable and satisfying.
Dear Friends: However you choose to recognize today, make it a memorial one. Diana
I have a new headset cranked up with my music. Some might consider my musical preferences old, but I find them outstanding. There’s the one and only Ella Fitzgerald, in Berlin (1963), “The Lost Tapes”; and another wonder, Nina Simone, her uniquely passionate music. Yuji Wang, an exciting young artist and a tiny slip of a being, is an accomplished, powerful pianist.
I enjoy great artistry and particularly now, to refocus from having to succeed in a retail environment. Events at work are going well, and now I must pay my dues by being patient and working productively.
I believe that focusing on artistry offers a soothing effect and offsets other high needs. Turning excess energy into artistic activities, like picture taking and poetry writing, should lose me little and gain me lots.
Gee, now it’s 4 a.m., and I must clock in by 6 a.m. Up early and writing are practing for tomorrow’s awful 5 a.m. clock-in target.
Dear Friends: Staying cool and calm for a while is a high personal goal. Diana