wordsfromanneli

Thoughts, ideas, photos, and stories.


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Night Visitor

Reggie Raccoon came to visit last night. Emma dog was surprised when she went out for last call. Luckily for her, Reggie was a fast climber.  I don’t think Emma would have come away unscathed from an interaction with Reggie.

 

 

Reggie likes to prowl at night,

Finds it safer without light,

Still he gets caught by surprise,

Up the tree he’s quick to rise.

 

Little dogs might seem so cute,

But it brings out Reggie Brute,

He can be so fiercely mean,

After all the fights he’s seen.

 

Up the tree’s the safest thing,

Better than the fighting ring,

Reggie needs to watch his back,

Just in case the dogs attack.

 

Waiting in the branch’s crook,

Fearful moments while he shook,

Seem a lifetime till it’s clear,

And he can release his fear.

 

All he wanted was to check,

If the squirrels had left a speck,

They are given so much food,

Thought they’d share if in the mood.

 

Nothing left though, that was clear,

And when coupled with the fear,

Reggie wonders why he came,

He must find some other game.

 

In the meantime he will smile,

For the camera all the while,

Long as he can look so sweet,

He can hope they’ll leave a treat.

 

 

Meanwhile Emma’s found a spot,

Where she can relax a lot,

Reggie doesn’t want to play,

Maybe try another day.

 

 

By the way, Emma says,  Don’t forget to look at Anneli’s bargains for her books at https://wordsfromanneli.com/2021/11/21/book-bargains/ 

 


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Book Bargains

In the month before Christmas I have marked my novels down to US $.99. This way you can load up your e-reader with five novels to keep you turning pages for about $5.00 total. Hours of entertainment for very little cost.

What will you get for 99 cents each?

Orion’s Gift

When Sylvia receives devastating news, she knows she has to leave her California home. While hiding away in the Baja Peninsula, living in a camper van, she meets a man with a similar dilemma. Both must avoid the spouses pursuing them, or be forced to return to the intolerable misery of their past. Will the sparks they feel for each other help see them through or only make their problems worse?

Baja camping is not without its dangers and both runaways must learn to trust and mistrust at the right times.

*****

The Wind Weeps

Andrea leaves big-city boredom in Ontario to search for love and a new life on B.C.’s rugged coast. The love of two men and a woman leads her into the world of commercial fishing. But soon, her adventure becomes a nightmare. The beauty of her surroundings is at odds with the terror that she lives every day. Trapped in an isolated cabin on the coast, she will need to test her newly acquired wilderness skills if she ever hopes to escape. Be sure to follow up with the sequel, Reckoning Tide.

*****

 

Reckoning Tide

 

*****

 

Marlie

Unlucky in love, Marlie flees a bad relationship. She accepts a teaching job in the remote Queen Charlotte Islands (Haida Gwaii). The beauty of the islands and the rugged challenge of northern living enthrall her. A good-looking artist has his eye on her. The perfect gentleman. Or is he? And what about that handsome fisherman? Is he just a bit too real for her with his hunting and fishing? Just as Marlie hopes that her life has made a turn for the better, disaster strikes. She is shocked to see her life spiraling downwards yet again. How could she have made such an error in judgement—an error that sets more bad luck in motion?
Not willing to lose control, Marlie takes a deep breath and sets out to get her life back on track. But can she do it alone?
Set in the remote islands of coastal British Columbia, Marlie is a heartfelt romance of love and loss and love again.
Experience the fears and joys of northern island living and delight in a second chance at true love.

 

Julia’s Violinist

Julia’s Violinist takes us to postwar Europe for an unbiased story of a love triangle.  Julia is widowed with two children at the end of WWll. She remarries and hopes to pick up the pieces to put her broken life back together. It isn’t going well. A letter arrives from her first love from twenty years ago. After all these years, he is alive and wants her to join him in a new life. She struggles with morality and a chance for happiness. Life’s decisions are not always easy and they can come at a huge price.

*****

To find out more about these novels, you can visit my website:

www.anneli-purchase.com

You can also click on the book cover images at the side of this post to go to amazon. If you don’t have a Kindle, you can go to smashwords.com to get these e-books for all types of e-reader formats.


46 Comments

American Thanksgiving

Just when you think things are so bad that you have nothing to be thankful for, along comes the Thanksgiving holiday to remind us of so many blessings in our lives.

I won’t begin to name any of the thousands of things we have to be thankful for. Each of us has a perspective uniquely our own. Some might be thankful for good health, while others in failing health are thankful for other things that they have come to appreciate. Some might be thankful for having lots of money, while others are just as happy with much less.  My own thought on that is ,”Money isn’t everything, but it sure helps.”

Whatever your circumstances allow, it’s important to make the most of the good things in life.

If you are lucky enough to be with friends or family on Thanksgiving, why not share some of the things you are truly thankful for.

H     Home for holidays is fine,

A     Appetizers, and some wine,

P     Pie dessert is understood,

P     Pumpkin’s always pretty good,

Y     Yams and taters fill the plate,

T     Turkey dinner would be great.

H     Happy family, sisters, brothers,

A     Aunts and uncles and their “others,”

N     No one needs to be left out,

K     Kinship’s what it’s all about.

S     So much to be thankful for,

G    Guests and family we adore.

I     It’s a happy time of year,

V    Valued friends that bring us cheer.

I     It’s a ritual affair,

N   Nothing else can quite compare,

G   Giving thanks for all we share.

 

In case you have trouble getting a turkey this year with all the supply chain problems just choose one of these Merriam’s wild turkeys I “shot” for you by the Missouri River.

 

To all my American friends and family, I wish you a happy Thanksgiving holiday.

 

 


53 Comments

Winter Prep

Hi, I’m Crispin. Remember me from a few weeks ago in the maple tree?

I wasn’t much bigger than a Coffee Crisp bar then, and I’m not a lot bigger now, but it isn’t for want of eating enough.

I tried this wood but it wasn’t that tasty. Think I’ll try the walnuts instead.

My older brother Jasper is also hanging around today, but I want to avoid him. He gets annoyed if I try to eat from what he calls HIS plate.

Oh, I think I hear him up there gnawing on the old moose antlers.

Maybe I’ll sneak over to the walnut stash while he’s busy.

I just hope that Steller’s jay isn’t hanging around. He has a sharp beak, like  a spear. Maybe when I grow up I’ll take him on, but for now, it’s better to play it safe.

See that beak? This was him last week with the sunflower seeds, but maybe he won’t try stealing the walnuts today…. Fat chance.

I was just about to head for the jar of walnuts when I saw that huge tool behind me. Is that a pick axe? Yikes! Made me lose my footing!

Okay, I’m all recovered now. My mother, Della, told me always to say grace before eating, so here goes. (I don’t think the god of squirrels will mind if I don’t close my eyes. Not a safe thing to do.)

And with that out of the way, I can dive in!

Yummy walnuts from the ornamental black walnut tree.

Many dangers, all I see,

Many dangers threaten me,

Tiptoe lightly as a breeze,

Tiptoe quickly, and then freeze.

 

Look around from left to right,

Look around, stay out of sight,

Hurry to the walnut stash,

Hurry, careful, do not crash.

 

Grab some nutmeat and abscond,

Grab the food of which I’m fond,

Nibble some and hide the rest,

Nibble fast and save the best.

 

Winter chill is coming soon,

Winter winds, perhaps typhoon,

Be prepared for hungry days,

Be prepared, these are my ways.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


39 Comments

Mr. Roy G. Biv

We’ve had crazy weather here lately with lots of wind and rain, but up in the hills, that rain took the form of snow. You can see that the freezing level is still fairly high, so we’ve been spared the snow for a while yet.

So while it snowed up high, it rained down low, but then the sun came out.

And with it came a friend of mine, Mr. Roy G. Biv.

 

But you must be wondering who Roy G. Biv is. Well, let me introduce you to him in the photo below.

Roy G. Biv is a colourful guy. If you take the first letters of his name, you’ll be able to remember all the colours of the rainbow in the order that they appear in the sky.

R = red

O = orange

Y = yellow

G = green

B = blue

I = Indigo

V = violet

 

*****

 

Rainbow Roy is quite the boy,

Giving joy immense,

Colours bright are quite a sight,

Though the sky is dense.

 

Clouds of rain are such a pain,

Bringing on the shivers,

Pouring down upon the ground,

Flowing past in rivers.

 

Near the peak the snowflakes streak,

Settling on the trees,

How I hope it coats the slope,

Don’t come down here, please.

 

Rainbow blaze, my senses daze,

Long as I shall live,

It’s a sight that brings delight,

Mr. Roy G. Biv.

 

 

 


31 Comments

Spotted Towhee

This towhee and the eastern towhee both used to be called rufous- sided towhees, but to differentiate it from the eastern towhee (Pipilo erythrophthalmus), it is  now called a spotted towhee (Pipilo maculatus).

 

Rufus is trying to figure out the best way to get into Lincoln the squirrel’s food.

“Have you ever been undecided, and had a foot in each camp?” he asks.

He finally decided to just go for it. Showing off his acrobatic skills.

No, he didn’t get put in jail for stealing Lincoln’s sunflower seeds. He’s just hiding here in plain sight. Nothing can get him here behind this maze of twigs.

“And no,” he says, ” I didn’t pull an all-nighter. My eyes are always red.”


45 Comments

Harris’s Sparrow

Brr! That’s a cold wind. I think it’s coming from the north, from Canada. Might be bringing Montana snow soon.

But wait! What do I see over there? A door in the side of the hill? I wonder who lives there? Might they put out a bird feeder?

I’d check it out, but it’s awfully close to Halloween…. I hope it’s not a goblin hideout.

Harris sparrow braves the breeze

Teasing up a feather,

Tolerates the cold with ease,

Any kind of weather.

 

Food is easier to find

On the warmer days,

Winter is by far less kind,

He must change his ways.

 

Roots in cellars could be good,

Oh, to peek inside,

But the cellar’s sealed  in wood,

With a door so wide.

 

Maybe it’s a lucky stroke,

Harris sits and thinks,

Really this is not a joke,

Something in there stinks.

 

Spooky, hidden, hillside cave,

Holds a vampire body,

Harris finds he’s not so brave,

Flies off chirping, “LAWDY!”

 

After midnight he’ll be bound

For a place serene,

While the ghouls go dancing round,

Spooky Halloween!

 

 

 

 


49 Comments

Last Show

The maple tree overhanging the driveway is almost finished changing colour. Soon it will shed its colourful dress and stand there shivering in bare limbs. The tiny dogwood in the foreground is also getting ready to drop its leaves. One last show of colour and it too will be done.

Here is the maple closer up. A few leaves still have a bit of green but most have turned a golden yellow or orange.

The laceleaf Japanese maple is one of the first to turn reddish-orange. It is normally green, unlike some Japanese maples that are a purple colour for all of its growing season.

This black walnut is an ornamental tree (meaning that the walnuts are not meant to be eaten, like the regular walnuts we know). But the squirrels like them.

These walnuts have a thick green outer shell that peels away, revealing what looks like a regular walnut. The shell, however, is so thick that it takes a sledge hammer to crack it. And yet, that is exactly what I do for the squirrels. They don’t seem to mind the bitter taste of the meaty inside parts.

The video below shows this ornamental black walnut tree losing its leaves to the cool breezes that gust up now and then. The main whoosh of leaves is well into the video, so if you can spare 30 seconds of your life to watch, you’ll see this tree giving it up for another season.

 


37 Comments

Jay and Goldie

The town water hole has always been the meeting place. Jay the Steller’s  jay and Goldie the golden crowned sparrow meet there for a quick conversation.

“Oh, yuck! Who messed in the drinking water?”

 

“Was it you?”

“Are you talking to me?”

Wish he’d just hurry up and get his drink and leave. Nobody else gets a turn with him around.

 

Goldie wants a little sip,

Just enough to wet her lip.

Jay enjoys to dominate,

Making her procrastinate.

 

Jay is bigger and he’s mean,

Something Goldie’s never been.

She will put up with his swagger,

Though her look is like a dagger.

 

She will stand her ground below,

Quick to flee if she must go.

Jay the bully squawks a lot,

Manners are what he has not.

 

Gentle Goldie waits him out,

Has no need to screech and shout.

Jay gets bored and leaves the scene,

Goldie breathes, once more serene.


30 Comments

Easy Sandwich Buns

A bread machine can do more than just make bread. I haven’t made bread in it for ages. I’ve found that it’s quicker and easier to make flat buns. I’ll talk about the recipe at the end.

The advantages of making these buns instead of bread:

  • you can freeze the buns in ziplocs, six or eight to a bag and take out one or two as you need them
  • you don’t have half a loaf of bread that is less than fresh, sitting in the fridge
  • the buns are almost as fresh as if they were just out of the oven if you put the frozen bun in the microwave for 20+ seconds
  • they make great sandwiches
  • toast them if you want
  • you don’t use your bread machine for baking as much because you only use the dough setting, and so you prolong the life of your paddles and the “plastic” seals that seat them (you don’t bake the seals, which always seem to be the first to go in a bread machine).

 

When  the two hours of the dough setting have timed out and your dough is mixed and has risen, place the dough on a board and cut in half.

 

Press one half into a rectangle. You can use a rolling pin or just press with your hands. I just use my hands. Then cut the piece once lengthwise and then make cuts for eight pieces. Place those pieces on a buttered baking sheet. Do the same for the second piece of dough and place on a second baking sheet.

Whisk one whole egg in a small bowl. If my whisk isn’t handy I use a fork.

With a pastry brush, paint the beaten egg over the top of each bun. If you have a dog or cat, you might want to put that leftover egg in the microwave for a few seconds and after it cools, give them a treat.

After I brushed these buns with egg, I sprinkled cardamom and cumin on them, having ground some cardamom and cumin seeds in an old coffee grinder. I also sprinkled a few grains of coarse salt on the buns, but these are things that you can omit if they don’t suit your taste buds.  You can make up your own toppings to sprinkle on, or have none.

I put my oven on very low for a few minutes and then turn it off. When it is just barely warm, I place the two baking sheets in the oven to rise for about 20 minutes or so.

Then I take them out, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and bake the buns, one sheet at a time, for 22 minutes each. If I had a bigger oven or a convection oven I might be able to bake both baking sheets at once, but you know your own oven and will be able to figure out what works for you.

 

For these buns, you can change the basic recipe and play around with your ingredients to suit your own preferences.

Basically:

2 cups of  lukewarm liquid

2 tbsp. butter

2 tbsp. honey (or sugar)

2 tsp. salt

5 cups flour

2 tsp. fast acting  (instant) yeast

*****

What I do:

I pour two cups of milk into a big measuring cup and put it in the microwave for two minutes.

Pour the milk into the bread pan in the bread machine.

Add the butter, salt, and honey.

Then, instead of using 5 cups of flour, I substitute for one of the cups of flour and use rolled oats, or Sunnyboy cereal, or cracked wheat, or whatever I feel like adding. Sometimes it’s a mixture of the above.

If I have them handy, I like to add a tablespoon of fennel seeds from my garden. I collect them in the fall and dry them, and they are so handy for baking or for adding to a mint tea.

On top of the flour, I add two teaspoons of the instant yeast.

*****

One last thing:

The buns work well for making garlic toast. Just cut a bun open as if you were making a sandwich, and then cut the two pieces in half. Spread with crushed garlic and butter. Toast under the broiler for a VERY short time. Use a timer, one minute at a time.

 

They also work really well for making paninis.