Friday, April 30, 2010

You Can Quote Me

To live content with small means; to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion; to be worthy, not respectable; and wealthy, not rich; to study hard, think quietly, talk gently, act frankly ... to listen to stars and buds, to babes and sages, with open heart; await occasions, hurry never ... this is my symphony.

                  ~~~  William Henry Channing  ~~~

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Clutter: The Movie

Y'all need to run right over to and watch this very cool 20-minute video on how all of our "stuff" is effecting us and our world.  It's been watched by over 8 million people since December 2007 if that tells you anything.

The woman behind it is Annie Leonard, the author of the book The Story of Stuff:  How Our Obsession with Stuff is Trashing the Planet, Our Communities and Our Health -- and a Vision for Change.  (Whew......long title for a big subject.)  Miss Leonard is definitely a dyed-in-the-wool environmentalist, but she also isn't anti-stuff.  She just wishes everybody would acquire MINDFULLY.  You know the question:  do I really need this?  In other words, don't let those Mad Men ad men control your buying:  you control it.

One of Annie's main tips for corralling your "work-watch-spend" treadmill (as she calls it) is to watch less TV.  I would add to that to stop buying and reading lifestyle magazines.  Not that I am able to do that you understand.  But it is good advice and maybe I will give it a stab.  Sometime.  In the future.  Maybe.

I better go look at this video again.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Monday Musing: The Country Life

Sometimes I get really caught up in bitching, moaning and complaining about where I live.  It's "out in the country", but not so far that it takes half a day to get to anywhere else.  It just seems that way quite often.  It's inconvenient if you want to just "dash out", "run by" or "run down to ___".  Planning is much more meaningful -- and necessary -- when you live "out in the country". And there's WAY too much yard work.  I could keep a yard crew busy with no problems at all.  Alas, I AM the yard crew (with help from the MOTH).

Yesterday morning though was one of those times that I remember why "city people" yearn to be where I am.  I was kind of glad I was here, too.  I took a nice walk.  The sky was blue, blue, blue.  The breeze was fresh, fresh, fresh.  And I was smilin', smilin', smilin'.  I was on my way back towards the house when about 100 feet in front of me, a momma 'possum walked across the road.  She was waddling for all she was worth and for a second I couldn't figure out why or why she looked so odd.  Then it dawned on me:  she had a back full of babies!  She walked parallel to the road along a hedgerow, so I crossed the road and walked with her about 30 feet out.  She didn't seem too concerned that I was there.  I got a really good look at all these 5 pairs of beady black eyes looking at me from her back.  It was just way cool, I have to say.  After a few minutes, she disappeared into the underbrush headed out across a pasture.  That's the first time in my life I've seen a live 'possum (not even counting the baby thing) that wasn't in a zoo.  Usually, I see the aftermath of run-ins with cars on the road.

So, today I'm celebrating being "out in the country" where you never know what fun surprise might be right around the corner.  From now on, I think I better remember to take a camera.

Friday, April 23, 2010

You Can Quote Me

We lovers of dogs are a tolerant lot, finding greater value in the unabashed affection of our friend than immaculate sofas.

                                ~~~ Author Unknown ~~~

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Book Report: Bookswim

This isn't exactly a book report.  It's more a "WOW.....look at this site related to books" report.  Check out if you love to read.  It works just like Netflix does for movies.  You create your to-read list and sign up for one of the plans they offer.  For $24 per month, you can get 3 books at a time with no late fees, no due dates and no shipping charges.  Pretty nifty, huh?  If you can spring for $30 a month, you can get 5 books at a time.  A prepaid return bag is supplied for you, too.  No more trying to find shelf space for all the tomes you buy and lug home.

I browsed their offerings a little bit and found that they offer lots of the newest titles.  They have a listing of the NY Times bestsellers and an "Oprah's List".  You can choose from biographies, cooking, mystery, children's, fiction (of course).......... all the usual suspects.

I love my Nook e-reader, so I'm not sure that I would use this service much.  But I like having it as a choice.  You might, too.  I'll never give up actually buying books.  There are too many I need to actually touch, savor and make notes in the margins.  But this could definitely whittle down my stash.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Monday Musing: It's All Good

That's what I keep telling myself anyway.  Today, I'm tired and the mullygrubbies have me in their grip.  You know how it is: a day that you just can't get enthused about nuthin'.  So, what to do?  Nothing came to mind that sounded like it would pull me out of the doldrums, so I just cleaned house.  (I was sort of hoping that those pesky mullygrubbies would be whisked down the toilet bowl during the cleaning process, but they stubbornly refused to go.)

When the world seems to take on a rather gray tint, I just put my head down and watch my feet take one step and then another.  Right now I believe they are attempting to pilot me to the ironing board.  Sigh.

In the words of that brilliant Southern lady, Miss Scarlett, "Tomorrow IS another day."

See y'all then............

Friday, April 16, 2010

You Can Quote Me

There is nothing like staying at home for real comfort.

                                   ~~~ Jane Austen ~~~

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Spring Snaps

The marvel that is spring defies word descriptions.   So, today I'm not even going to try.  I'm just going to share a few pictures I've taken around the farm lately as buds and leaves and bees and birds begin the rites of Spring.

Hope everyone's spring is starting out in a delightful way.  Get out and get some dirt under your's good for what ails you!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Monday Musing: Busy as a Bee

The past ten days or so has been chock full of "doings".  I had a birthday.  It was Easter.  But most importantly, it's just SPRING.  There is so much that has to be done at this time of year.  At least there is if you live where yards and growing things are important.  The grass starts growing about an inch a day.  The lawn mower needs to be tuned up.  All the pots that didn't get emptied in the fall require that now.  Bedding plants start calling your name at Lowe's and Home Depot and other nurseries.  And the pollen starts clogging up the air -- not to mention your lungs -- and making everything golden yellow.  It's at this time of the year that I just start turning circles in the floor, not knowing where in the hell to start first.  So, here I am; this is where I started:

Another Lowe's visit.

Aren't I just the picture of garden chic?  I swear, just once I'd like to look like those ladies who do yard work looking like they stepped out of the latest Better Homes & Gardens instead of something the dogs dragged in.  Never mind.  I got a couple of Knock Out roses which I"m hoping will bloom like crazy all advertised!

Friday, April 2, 2010

You Can Quote Me

I could not, at any age, be content to take my place in a corner by the fireside and simply look on.

                  ~~~   Eleanor Roosevelt  ~~~

Thursday, April 1, 2010

In the Library: Dog Days - Dispatches from Bedlam Farm

I got finished with this book by Jon Katz a few days ago.  Just wanted to share that it's a nice, mellow read.  You may be familiar with Katz's other books, among them A Good Dog and The Dogs of Bedlam Farm.  I haven't read those, but I have read his New Work of Dogs which I thought was really good.

Bedlam Farm is in upstate New York and Katz tells little stories about the foibles and adventures of his relationships with all his animals, including a couple of Border Collies, a Lab, his four donkeys, Elvis the steer and his rooster, Winston......oh, and the barn cat, Mother.

It's very entertaining.  One of the most intriguing things to me is the fact that he lives at the farm almost all the time and his wife still maintains and lives in their home in New Jersey.  She drops in for occasional visits, but apparently isn't much of a "farm girl".  That arrangement seems to work out well for everybody concerned.  Maybe more marriages should try it out :))

If you like dogs, you'll like Dog Days.