Thursday, February 28, 2008

Willow Springs

All through this long never ending winter, all I have been able to think about is the day when we can start going back to Willow park.

Old man winter however is making it feel as though the Arctic tundra has fallen upon our shoulders, with the temperatures hovering this morning at the -15c & -26c with the windchill. More of the same is being forecast for tomorrow with temps at -18c/ - 28c.

A few days ago we were in the Norval area and decided to try and get through the snow to take a few winter pictures of the park. It’s obviously impossible for me to negotiate the snow to the park area because of my mobility impairment, so I was restricted to the parking lot area whilst my wife waded through the accumulation of snow and reached our favorite summer haunt. She sure brought back some digital treasure.

There is a remarkable difference between summer & winter that’s for sure, but just another example of the artistry and power of mother nature. How often can one find a place that provides such beauty during the summer months, and have this same place show itself to be such a rich jewel in the face of winter?

Willow Park is such a place and I described it many times during our last summer outings, which we enjoyed at every opportunity.

One would think that under the snow covered blanket and bitterly cold days that is the face of winter, there could be no attraction to the park at all.

The other day we sure found out differently. The music of the rippling, fast flowing waters of the river, danced their way upstream doing their best to entice spring to get started and bring with it the joys of this years first blooms. The snow covered woods and the banks of the river, all murmuring their approval on the whispers of the breeze, of such a long awaited event.

I’m sure Ted up at the house, ~ perhaps looking through his window, is wistfully waiting too, ready to play his music for all who would listen, as the light classical notes of the masters wend their way upon the air, flowing through the valley of the woods. Skirting the wetlands calling out to the hibernating tortoise, “Come, wake up! wake up! It’s time to start another year!”


Tuesday, February 26, 2008


This winter has been a long harsh one. However the folks who do ice sculptures are happy I would reckon. A couple of days ago I came across a few ice pictures in ‘Neatorama’. Now this is really what I call ice sculpture, done by none other than Mother Nature herself. I thought I’d share a couple with you, these were shot in Estonia.


Monday, February 25, 2008

Award Nite

A week ago fellow bloggers Samrina and Newnorth decided that they wanted to give me an award for my blog.

Samrina's award originated at:
Arte Y Pico from Uruguay.

Samrina’s award came because she classed my blog along with others, as artistic in its content & presentation, and that it gave her much enjoyment each day. I thank her for the award and for how she views my attempts at a topic on a given day. Thank you my friend.

Newnorth ~ Her award she gave me was, for as the award says ~ “I made her day” ~ .. Insert a quiet smile here if you please.. I accept that award also. Thank you too my friend.

It is nice to know that other bloggers think of others in such nice terms.
I like to think that all bloggers who try their best each day, are like one big family. An online family maybe, but even so it just shows that when people mingle like this, it is possible to reach out and touch.

In checking out other recipients of both these awards I find, that some pass it on and some offer them to all. I too find it difficult to just select certain ones over others in passing the awards along, for no matter which blogs I frequent on my list I always find all the blogs very well done, “Quite entertaining & Artistic” in fact, so very pleasing, that they “All make my day” So for those of you who would wish to partake, please take one.

Thank you all my friends. :)


Friday, February 22, 2008

A Few Words

When one drifts with the wind,
There's no telling -
How many people
One will touch,
Before -
They find themselves.


In the World today
Everywhere you look -
The air is charged
with emotions.
It is crucial then,
A sense of understanding -
Take its place
Amid the tears
And the


You have a way
of making words
sound like music.
Like gentle waves,
Lapping on a moonlit shore.

© C'ya

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


I wrote this account a couple of years ago of an event in my life. I have never looked back, sadly I wonder what took me so long to come to my senses. ~~

Wearily I opened my eyes, somewhat apprehensive as to what this day would bring.

Yesterday I was so full of fire and determination about the agenda for today. This morning though most of the flames had dulled a little, as one more time I started to get myself into the survival mode.

Almost daily, I get reminders from my body of where I am today because of the cigarette. That causes me to think of how good things used to be like, oh so many years ago now. Such stupidity.

Of course this is my war against the dreaded cigarette. Like many others before me I have been humbled by the weed for far too long. It almost seems like this has been a hundred year war with no end in sight. So many battles, albeit the war rages on as I win a small encounter here and there.

There was a time when the cigarette was ruler supreme, as he had me puffing merrily away at the rate of thirty five a day hacking and coughing my socks up on a daily basis.

In looking back though I have come a long way since those days, but the war isn’t over quite yet and the hacking continues.

This is not the first time that I have tried to end this war and failed. In the past though, I realize now that I was ill prepared still being at the pack plus a day level. That’s when I reckon you could say I went into training and started my withdrawal routine to get the numbers and their strengths down to where I stood a fighting chance of success.

Now I know that there is some kind of a fallacy about regular strength and light cigarettes. It is true that with the removal of the filter, there is no difference in tobacco strength, however; it does show that with the filter left in place the filter does make some difference in taste. Despite all the semantics, the one unmistakable fact is, there is no minimizing the damage done to the lungs etc, regardless of regular or light cigarettes.

Through whatever means employable, I was able to cut down on the consumption numbers to an improving one pack a day. That was in the beginning of my resolve. Over the period of two years, I have got that number down to an all out attack of four or five smokes a day. But I can’t take all the credit for that achievement, I had a couple of scares along the way which any fool would recognize as an incentive.

Today I had elected to execute the coup de grace, kill this monster once and for all. But as the hours tick by this thing just eats away at you deep inside. I reckon that’s what they mean by craving, luckily so far I am in control and winning this battle today.

That’s what prompted me to sit down and write something about this, for everything helps to keep the Tiger at bay a little longer. Stay focused, face my enemy head on and it seems, get a little stronger by the hour. Nay! Even by the minute.

So what say thee Sir Weed!, feel like a joust today? What’s that you say? I can’t hope to win? Well guess what. Today I think I can!

E. Valentine March 28/06 ©

As a postscript, I finally applied this on July 3/06 and have not smoked since. It is my belief, that one has to really psyche oneself up enough to make this work. It did for me.


Saturday, February 16, 2008

An Ice Day

Unlike some places that are now enjoying the first signs of spring, we seem to be firmly entrenched still with winter. So here is a little poem I wrote with supporting array of pics from yesterday. ~(clickable thumbnails)


Here with an eeriness of light,
Natures beauty, sculptured ripples
Glistening shades of dark and white
Winters fingers ~ Melting icicles. ©

Wednesday, February 13, 2008


February 14th is St Valentines Day, it is also my birthday, I still only get one card to cover! ~

So what are the chances? I live in a rural area, pop approx 20,000.
So what are the chances of finding someone else with the same birthday? Ok. So what are the chances that both of them live in the same small town? More? Ok.
What are the chances they not only have the same birthday and live in the same small town, but they are both exactly the same age! Hah, hah!

Now you still with me? Given all that, what are the chances they both live in the same apartment building! Getaway you say! Now the final piece, what are the chances that they not only live in the same building (only 12 apartments) in the same little town and are both the same age, it turns out they live right next door to each other!! Lets see you top that one!
Happy birthday Bob!
~ ~ ~

So what are you doing for your sweetie on this special day? A nice card, flowers, chocolates? How about dinner and a show? How do you tell her how much you love her? ~ Do you even remember to tell her anything? I wouldn’t want to be in your shoes Bud!

For my honey, I decided to put together a few words that try to express my love for her and what she means to me.

My Love for you

I feel for you, like I were a part of you.
I feel for you, ~ as the beat of your heart,
I feel as ~ the eyes in your head,
Your very precious thoughts ~
And the way you shake your hair.
I feel as part of you, ~ when pouting your mouth -
That smile that would melt any heart.
These are but some of the things I feel.
As being a part of you my love,
And how much I love you.
On this special Valentine’s Day ~ ©

Monday, February 11, 2008

A Second Chance

When I first started writing the poem about Sangilak, this was the poem I wrote first. However at the time, I was not too comfortable with how it read or the rhythm so I then wrote the other poem, which I submitted.

I have since worked out the wrinkles of this poem, to the point that I am reasonably happy with it, so I give you my other lion creation.

A Shameless Lion

Well now that my feet are on the ground
I have the strangest ‘tail’ to explain, ~ if I may.
All about a Lion, ~ of how he wove his spell –
When he became the hunter and I became the prey.

How he showed up everywhere, relentless his pursuit,
He said “stop!” and I turned, to see what he would say.
“I’m only looking for a home, if you could be so kind.”
Now he’s always by my side, ~ for as long as he will stay.

E.Valentine Jan 26/08 ©


Saturday, February 9, 2008


Swen ~ Karen

Both have tagged me for this little meme, ‘Open Book'. These were the instructions:

1. Pick up the nearest book.
2. Open it at page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence/ phrase.
4. Blog the next four sentences/ phrases together with these instructions.
5. Don't you dare dig your shelves for that very special or intellectual book.
6. Pass it forward to six friends

My problem though, is I haven’t read very much of anything in a while. My wife on the other hand is a different story. Elizabeth is an avid reader and has probably read half the library.

It is just my luck then, that the nearest book to where I am sitting is the one she has just finished. This has turned out to be not just any book. This book is the latest book written by Ken Follett, the internationally acclaimed “World Without End.”

“World Without End,” is the sequel written 18 years later to the classic “Pillars of the Earth”. The books are English fictional history.

This one is penned in about the 14th century, that alone helps set the stage for some very exciting reading. Some of the things one can expect to find in the novel are cathedrals and monks, kings, knights, love and war, many memorable characters and who can forget the time of the great plague, which wiped out almost half the population of Europe.

This book too will become a classic, ~ it is a masterpiece.

Sentences 6-9 on page 123:

At the end of a rope,” he said. “Same way I brought the cow in.”
“Ah, but you didn’t have to get the cow past me and these people.”
Gwenda’s heart leaped with hope.

These are my tag victims:

Virtual Journey
New North
The Ancient one
Augs Casa

Good Luck.


Wednesday, February 6, 2008


Most times when we think of Mother Nature we usually embellish all the good things we see and enjoy. The beautiful summers, the birds and animals, the sights that can only come from looking out over the expanse of new life as nature takes over the remnants of what winter has left us, fashioning a new beginning.

Only occasionally do we have another side of nature to look at. Pretty rarely do we think of it as seemingly, cold, cruel and downright heartless.

Yesterday/overnight was one of those such times.

According to the reports out of the news sources where we live, approximately 44 people have supposed to have lost their lives. All this arising out of a horrendous pattern of storms and Tornado’s that cut a path across some of the United States.

When you see some of the pictures like I did, nature really gives you a jolt and something else to think about, a new measure of respect for the awesome powers that nature possesses.

All too many times do we hear and read of the disasters from other countries around the world. To think of such things happening here at ‘our home’ would not even be in our minds until it happens as it did yesterday/night.

Our hearts and prayers go out to those who have suffered as a result of this disaster. Our condolences to the relatives, the loved ones, friends and fellow workers, may you find peace as you travel the journey of your grief.


Monday, February 4, 2008

Across the Pond

“The king forbade my tongue to speak of Mortimer. But I will find him when he is asleep, and in his ear I’ll holler ‘Mortimer!’ Nay I’ll have a starling shall be taught to speak nothing but Mortimer, and give it to him to keep his anger still in motion.”

This is a quote from Shakespeare’s “Henry IV” and notable for being the reason we have so many starlings in North America today.

Eugene Schieffelin was a wealthy drug manufacturer and head of the Acclimation Society of North America. His mandate was to introduce plants and animals to the New World. Fanatical about the Bards work, he attempted to bring in every bird mentioned in his plays and poems.
Thrushes, skylarks, nightingales, house-finches, for better or worse, not all survived, but the 60 starlings released in New York’s Central Park in 1890 thrived and multiplied. And multiplied….. after only 30 years they could be found coast to coast. Being relatives of the mynah bird, starlings can be taught to whistle tunes and talk.

We do get a lot of birds where we live, so we encourage them by making sure we feed them year round.

We had the pleasure of witnessing some starlings teaching their offspring how to feed, and were lucky enough to catch a short video of the family all clamoring to be fed on the suet feeder. It was funny that here were the birds perched on the food source, and not knowing how to eat, they had to be shown. Trying to show 3 & 4 not so small young ones all at the same time, is no picnic for the poor mother. We apologize for the quality of the shoot.
Also shown in the video are Goldfinches which breed in this area and a shot of doves ~ the wife had to tap on the window to make the finches fly off like that!