Special Delivery

Recently I listened to some of the UN speeches on TV. I like to have the closed captioning feature turned on in case I miss anything they said. I found out that some countries like Cuba, Venezuela, and a couple of others have their food brought in from very far away. Now, I must stress that only a few countries are doing this.

Apparently they have a UFO bringing potatoes in from some other planet, or maybe even from another galaxy. But why just them? Well, the closed captioning said it’s because they have …

a dics tater ship. Honestly! That’s what the closed captioning said: “These countries pretend to have a democracy when in fact they have a disc tater ship.”

I always KNEW there was life beyond our Earth!

A Sunny Cloud

Early in the morning, the sun’s first rays hit the top of the hills and one lonely leftover cloud. I’ve learned keep the camera handy and to drop everything when the light is right. Sure enough, less than a minute later, the light changed and the magic was gone.

Cloud Talk

 

I didn’t have the heart to add

Another drop of rain

With all the cloudbursts you have had

It could become a pain.

 

I’d rather brighten up your day

With promises of joy

For drought relief, a price you pay

Too much rain can annoy.

 

Beach Fishing, Anyone?

I would feel safe enough fishing from a little skiff. I wouldn’t mind the mystic, misty fog that will burn off later in the day.

But going ashore to fish from the beach has given me pause. All sorts of dangers lurk there, right next to those horse clams that squirt water through their siphons like a mini fire brigade.

Remember them, squirting water into the air? Well, just look what is going on behind their backs.What if I’d been standing on the beach fishing, and it turned out to be the bruin’s favourite fishing spot? I think I’d stay in the skiff, thank you.

But worse yet, what if you heard wolves howling the night before, you go to the beach to fish in the morning and a friend calls over to tell you he just saw a wolf running away. You go to explore, and find that wolves have taken down a good-sized deer.

A pack of wolves would tear at the hide, pulling it right off the hind quarters to get at the meat under it. I apologize to the squeamish readers, but this is real life and death–the kind of thing we Disney fans deny ever happens, when in fact it is going on all the time. It must go on. Wolves have to eat too. But you’ll excuse me if I’m not overly in love with wolves or want to transplant them to every part of the country.

Next time I’ll post something sweet and not too real. I know that for many of you this is hard to look at. I didn’t like it myself, but it’s real, it’s true, and it’s happening out there in the real world.

No, I wasn’t there that day, but the Captain was. He took these pictures.

Cougar Kittens

Thanks to Rhonda Hanuse for sharing this photo and her story with us.

A couple of weeks ago,  Rhonda and her daughter Cheyenne were driving home near Port Hardy on northern Vancouver Island.   As they rounded a corner,  in the distance they saw what looked like a deer but wasn’t.

“What was that?”

Rhonda reached for her camera and clicked away but was too late and she only got pictures of trees. She braked and slowly pulled over to the side of the road. She turned off the ignition and opened the two front windows a crack.

Cheyenne tapped her on the shoulder. “Mom look.” She pointed to the tall grass on the side of the road. The grass swayed in a straight line. The movement stopped a short distance away.

Two cougar kittens peeked out. Rhonda took pictures through the car window.  One kitten looked toward the bushes where the mama had crossed.  The mama cougar chirped to them from the other side of the highway;  the kittens chirped back to their mom.   After a while the more confident  kitten crossed the highway.   The second kitten kept an eye on Rhonda and her daughter. It started to cross only a few steps behind the first kitten, but had to turn back quickly because of an oncoming truck.  Moments later, with mama-cougar chirps and no more traffic, the second kitten tried again and crossed safely.

For Rhonda and her daughter Cheyenne, this experience was priceless.

I’m so pleased that Rhonda agreed to share this photo and her story with us.

 

It was a sunny day

Think RED. Now imagine this full moon as red as the ring around it. That’s how it really looked. The smoke in the air gave the moon the colour of blood. I’m sorry my camera doesn’t show how red it was.

I thought it was interesting that the end of a tree branch is silhouetted against the moon’s face.

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The moon.

The next day, as Paul Simon said …

It was a sunny day,

Not a cloud was in the sky.

Not a negative word was heard,

From the people passing by.

Not clouds made of water anyway. It would have been a bluebird sky if it wasn’t for the smoke. The sun was so red last evening that I thought I was looking at the red planet in a science fiction movie. It was eeeeeeeerie! Again, the photo doesn’t show the true colour I saw. Like the moon the night before, the sun was blood red. Today it’s more of the same. Smoke fills the skies.

We have natural disasters all over the world. Wildfires, floods, and hurricanes. These are all extremely hard to deal with. What I don’t understand is why we need to add man-made disasters (terrorism, political power struggles, crime, and war) to the mix.

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The sun.

I just had a note from WordPress letting me know this was my 500th post. My first reaction was, “Wow! Isn’t that great?” but then I thought, “Uh-oh! Am I talking too much?” 😉

Easy Healthy Granola

Porridge is good for you. I’m sorry. Too slimy for me. So I thought, why not eat it baked instead of boiled? Granola was the perfect solution. Trouble is, the store-bought granola is all so sweet, and who needs that when you’re already sweet enough, right?

Solution? Make my own granola. You can do it too. It’s EASY! Big flakes of rolled oats go into the bowl, about 8 cups makes it worthwhile. After that, you add whatever you happen to have on hand or like to eat, in the way of nuts and seeds.

I like to use pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, whatever kind of nuts I have on hand – today it’s almonds and hazelnuts. A cup of each is plenty. Chop the nuts. By the way, the reason you don’t see any sunflower seeds on the table is because the ones I tried to buy yesterday from the bulk bins in the store were rancid. I usually get the salted seeds for that reason but in this case, even the salt couldn’t save the natural oil in the seeds from going rancid. At home I always keep nuts and seeds in the freezer.

So we’re doing without sunflower seeds.

You can use whatever you want in the granola, but keep in mind that fruit and berries or raisins will not turn out well if you toast them. Better to add those later when you are making your breakfast.

Mix the chopped nuts and seeds with the rolled oats in a big bowl. Spread the mixture onto baking sheets, not too thick, but just so the sheets are covered.

Drizzle liquid honey over the granola mix. I had one hand on the wiggling camera and the other hand trying to drizzle the honey. The photo came out pretty bad. Still, I didn’t want you to miss out on that step, so here is the blurry reminder to sweeten the granola a little bit.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 6 to 8 minutes. The granola at the edges of the baking sheet will turn brown. Take it out of the oven before it burns (which can happen quickly).

Important tip***** When it’s done, scrape the granola off the sheet and into a bowl right away, or the melted, baked honey will glue the granola onto the sheet.

Now take out whatever fruit or berries you have on hand (or not), put some granola into a small bowl, add milk (some prefer yogurt), and top it with your berries.

Place the bowl on a lovely mat knitted for you by your friend and enjoy a healthy, tasty breakfast.

 

Hot Dogs and Dry Grass

What can you do if you’re a dog and it’s too hot to run around and play? You lie down under a tree and conserve your energy. Make sure the tree is in a place where you can see the back door and the deck, in case there’s any action there, or a chance to come in and have a snack.
Poor Emma looks bored, and Ruby has given up on anything interesting happening. But wait! Something is moving in the trees above.
It’s just a chickadee. Too high up to jump for.

Emma gives it a look. “If it wasn’t so hot, I’d make a leap for you….”

But, yawwwwn … she knows she wouldn’t get it.

Might as well just nap until this dog day of summer is over and the mistress calls us for supper. Sure wish she would have watered the grass though, so it’s not so prickly to lie on.

Grass is dry and breaking off,

It’s dry this summer season.

The mistress turned the water off,

But do you know the reason?

 

It’s not for conservation that

She lets the grass go yellow.

The fact is she is lazy and

Would rather just be mellow.

 

If grass is green it grows a lot,

And then you have to mow it.

The mistress is a lazy sod,

Now all the world will know it.