“Earning Your Keep”

While browsing through last April’s posts, I stumbled upon this post I wrote. It’s about how New Englanders thrive in all the seasons and the extremes. It takes a strength and pereseverance to live here, to remain content while the harsh conditions can test your endurance. As winter shuts its door and welcoming spring gradually begins, I wish to share this once again.

https://heartandsoul974.wordpress.com/2018/04/14/earning-your-keep/https://heartandsoul974.wordpress.com/2018/04/14/earning-your-keep/

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I Can’t Live Without…

I can’t live without…

family surrounding me,

loving me,

embracing me

I can’t live without…

my dear husband who I pledged

to spend the rest of my life with

Oh what the adventures we’ve had and we’re still going

strong

I can’t live without…

the rising strong mountains looming in

my background

I can’t live without…

the inhalation of the salty air,

the fortress of the sea crashing into the ever stretching

sands


I can’t live without…

writing,

forming words into flowing sentences,

describing moments,

feelings and thoughts

As if my breath and beating heart depends

on every written word

I can’t live without…

the delicate pretty growing flowers

planting roots in our soil

Blossoming and beautifying our little corner

of the world

I can’t live without…

looming green plants

reaching to the sun

fresh grown vegetables bursting

from our soil


I can’t live without…

my home,

a meeting place of loved ones

a warm spot to plant our roots

to love behind closed doors

To put our feet up and rest

And thank God for all that is good here.

I CAN LIVE WITHOUT

Hate and fear

Narcissism

Injustices towards humans and animals

Raging jealousy

Insecurity

What can’t you live without right now?

A Winter Walk

Amid mounds of glistening snow and icy sheets that glaze driveways and roads, I choose to walk. I’m sure heat worshippers think I’m crazy! It’s that I simply enjoy the crisp cold air, inhaling the freshness. This energizes me and reminds me that I’m alive! Everything is clearer and crisp. Distant white capped mountains stretch in the distance as the dazzling trees are dressed in bridal whites. Fiery sunsets paint the sky with rich peaches and promising pinks, an amazing accompaniment to this white world surrounding me.

While walking in winter, I spy animal tracks winding in yards and spiraling into the mysterious woods. Curiously I attempt to break the code and discover which animal had tread there. Deer? A fox? Possibly it’s a little white ermine such as the one that’s living in our yard and sometimes in the attic.

Cars race by, slipping in the snow. Even bulky trucks barrel on this quiet country road, as fuel deliveries are being made to stoke people’s furnaces.

I slip on a pair of mittens and comfy hat. Then pull on fuzzy socks and laced up boots. A parka is zipped up. Sometimes a woolen scarf wraps me in like a present. My house key lay buried in my pocket. I’m on my way…walking down the hill towards the bustling town and then up another winding slope to my road. Months ago this walk exhausted me. It left me gasping for air and I had to intermittently stop to regain my raspy breath. Since I’ve exercised mostly every day and mastered this walk, I no longer stop. My strides are longer, more fluid and my breathing healthy and not rushed.

A turkey crossing the snowy road.

I do not walk during snow storms per my husbands sage advice. Plow trucks take much of the road. Cars slip and slide, sending slush and snow at any passer by. Ice patches are hidden by white cover, easy slipping conditions.

I don’t really think during these treks. Instead I notice my surroundings, the houses, the cars and the animals tracks. I breathe deeply. I exhale warm puffs. As I approach my little house, the grayish column of smoke twists up from the chimney. I can already feel the houses warmth. As soon as I jingle the key in the lock and thrust open the barrier, a sultry heat wallops my face. Instant comfort. Our black cat, Smokey, saunters to the entry and greets me with his mewing and rub up against my frigid legs.

I hear the stove crackle as I tear off my wintry layers. This completes the winter walk experience and I sigh with a happiness, a general contentment that I live in New England and actually thrive because of it. I was born of strong stock, of Vermont families that have lived and loved the winter. So I continue the tradition and always wish to do so.

Have you walked in a winter landscape lately? Do you have a habit of walking and noticing every little detail of your surroundings?

All My Best,

Heart and Soul 💜

An Owl Sighting

From all about owls.org

Sometimes Tom and I take night rides around our town gawking at deer or whatever wildlife is out and about. A few days ago we were traveling up steep King Hill Road when an owl swooped over our car and landed on a nearby tree branch. It’s wingspan was quite expansive and at first it was quite hard to figure out what type of bird it was!

Tom put the truck in park while we watched the owl in the twilight. It stood absolutely still, probably about ten feet away from us. It was too dark to take a picture but it’s image is burned in my memory, it’s small stature, it’s wide alert eyes, it’s calm demeanor.

There’s something special about owls. When I see one I feel that magic is around me. It’s absolute beauty and composure amazes me, sometimes bringing me to tears.

It was a special wildlife moment that happens, taking my breath away! We were instantly mesmerized and what was really a minute or so, seemed like ages.  I thank God for these creatures in my town and the opportunity to see them!

Pumpkin Discovery

Whirling winds swept crinkled leaves

here and there.

The mid day sun gleamed

as warm temperatures reached 60,

batheing me with contentment.

Teeny chickadees flitted from branch to branch

of an old gnarled

apple tree.

 

 

 

 

Suddenly I spied

an orange hue from the compost pile.

A radiant glow,

tangled within greens and browns,

the pumpkin vine.

 

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Upon close investigation

Tom found

the globe shaped fruit

bitten into,

hollow,

cleaned out,

to feed a wild belly.

Its readiness for winter.

 

Tom cut the rough stem

and swiftly rolled it

down the pile.

I hoped the hungry creature

would return to finish.

 

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Instead

We  harvested the green lil guy,

the squash we knew about.

No sudden surprises.

No orange color yet.

 

 

 

This spontaneous discovery

turned into slight disappointment,

but a fulfilling opportunity

for our visitor!

He/ she needed it more.

 

I am hopeful

the critter will survive the winter.

Maybe our pumpkin made a difference.

 

All My Best,

Heart and Soul

 

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Autumn Elegance

 

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It’s my autumn wish to completely express my adoration of my home state, New Hampshire. Being born within its boundaries and breathing it’s fresh country air 49 years entitles me to personal experience. It’s the many years of waking up to majestic mountains and living my life with a scenic background, enough that I should pinch myself that I’m this blessed!

 

 

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Many years ago Autumn stole my heart with its vibrant gold and red elegance.

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Here we stopped among multiple cars and crowds of tourists to snap some lasting photos of the season. This is Waterville Valley.

 

 

Sunday afternoon Tom and I cruised the infamous Kangamangus Highway with twists and turns through the White Mountain forest. As we began our journey we were fortunate enough to trail a parade of Corvettes. Even though the day was raw and chilly in the 40’s with a whipping wind, the pleasant sun brought some heat to our enclosed car.

 

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If you ever have the opportunity to visit our stunning state, make sure to wander up north and take a ride on the highway. Every few miles are lookouts, picnic areas, hikes and some campgrounds to vacation in a rustic scene.

 

Here we stopped to stretch our legs and absorb the glory of Autumn. The C.L. Graham Wangan Grounds lookout is in Lincoln. I’ve never seen as many cars and tourists crowding the area, but even so we found our tiny space to enjoy.

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If scenic mountains could be royalty their elegance would sparkle within the court. Their colorful leaves resemble precious jewels, even as the glow wanes. The monumental scenery takes people’s breath away as they absorb it’s unbelievable majesty.

 

I’m thankful for the quality time Tom and I spent on the road.  We followed the Kangamangus for a few hours towards Conway, NH. Then we stopped at a rest area bordering a brook and ate packed peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.To wrap up the day, we cruised home slowly with no  expectations. We had heard foliage was at a peak a week ago but even so, the colors popped here and there.  It’s these Autumn days that fill my bucket overflowing!

 

 

All My Best,

Heart and Soul ❤️