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From See To Shining See May 21, 2015

Posted by nrhatch in Home & Garden, Mindfulness, Nature, Word Play.
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38 comments

Florida is not all blue skies and palm trees.

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We also enjoy pink spring blossoms.

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Framed by palm fronds.

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And budding families of Sandhill Cranes.

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Brilliant reds dot the landscape.

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While Great White Egrets patrol for lizards al fresco.

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Gardens may be a wild riot of competing colors.

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Or a single shade of shade-loving ground cover.

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That’s why I keep my eyes open when prowling from see to shining see!

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Here . . . see for yourself:

Aah . . . that’s better!

Creating A Zen Garden May 13, 2015

Posted by nrhatch in Home & Garden, Humor, Mindfulness, Nature.
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34 comments

Ego’s appetite for accolades, approval, acclaim, acknowledgment, applause, admiration, etc., etc., etc., is insatiable.

The bigger it gets, the more often it asks to be fed.

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It is up to us to cut it down to size.

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Allowing the rest of the garden to emerge from shade to sunlight.

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TIP:  To remove tenacious roots, use a bulldozer.

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Once we evict overgrown and overblown tenants, we can replant.

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Mulching new blooms with care to prevent weeds from taking root.

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Buoyed by success, we expand our efforts to encompass other beds.

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Transforming a landscape of uncontrolled chaos into an oasis of peace.

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Aah . . . that’s better!

3 Pelicans & A Spoonbill May 5, 2015

Posted by nrhatch in Amazing Animals, Humor, Nature.
Tags: , , , ,
40 comments

A wonderful bird is the Pelican.
His beak can hold more than his belly can.
He can hold in his beak
Enough food for a week!
But I’ll be darned if I know how the hellican?

~ Dixon Lanier Merritt

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Like other snowbirds, pelicans flock to the region during season to commune on our lagoon.

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The resident snappy dressers, Roseate Spoonbills, happily share space with their snack happy northern cousins.

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As they glide across the mirrored surface of lakes, ponds, and lagoons, well-pouched pelicans scan for fish, dipping nets at the ready.

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Snatching fish in shallow stocked ponds is a *SNAP* for these sushi loving birds.

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As each fish gets scooped up and swallowed down, a resounding *SNAP* from the pelican’s pouch echoes across and around the pond.

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With every snatched snack, these voracious visitors smack their lips, keeping count in song:

100 tasty fish in the lake
100 tasty fish
I grab one out
And “SNAP* it about
99 tasty fish in the lake

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Spoonbills, in contrast, are less obvious in appetite as they silently sweep, swirl, and sift through silt at water’s edge:

The roseate spoonbill spends a lot of its time in shallow water feeding. It sweeps its open bill from side to side in the water to sift up food like small fish, shrimp, mollusks, snails and insects. It has touch receptors in its bill that help it feel its prey. Like the flamingo, the roseate spoonbill’s pink color comes from the food it eats. Some of the crustaceans it eats feed on algae that give the spoonbill’s feathers their rosy pink color. 

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Spoonbills don’t sing silly fish songs . . . but they do practice Tai Chi and Yoga.

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A good after-meal S~T~R~E~T~C~H aids digestion.

Aah . . . that’s better!

The Worst First Date February 21, 2015

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Joke, Nature, People.
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52 comments

Brian-Oh-NoWhen Jay Leno asked audience members to share embarrassing first dates, this story took the prize:

I had the worst first date ever.  My date took me skiing in the mountains outside Salt Lake City, Utah.  The outing was fun, until we started for home.

Driving down the mountain, an hour away from the nearest rest room, in the middle of nowhere, nature called.

I realized I should NOT have had that extra latte.

After holding it as long as I could, I asked him to stop the car so I could go beside the road.  As soon as the car stopped, I jumped out, ran behind the car, yanked my pants down, rested my butt against the rear fender, and let go.

My date stood at the side of the car watching for traffic.

TimonDespite the embarrassing nature of the situation, all I could think about was the relief I felt.  Finished, I bent to pull up my pants and discovered my cheeks were glued to the car’s fender.  Thoughts of tongues frozen to metal flagpoles came to mind as I attempted to disengage my exposed flesh from the icy perch.

When I told my date I needed assistance, he came around the car and burst out laughing at the sight of me freezing my butt off!

After we stopped laughing, we figured out the best way to free me . . . I looked the other way while he unzipped his pants and peed my butt off the fender.

As the audience screamed with laughter, Leno said, “This gives a whole new meaning to being pissed off.”

Mickey-and-Minnie-kissHow did the date end?

Her date became her husband and was sitting next to her on the Leno show.

Aah . . . that’s better!

E-mail from an unknown author (sent by Joe M.)

Has a first date ever pissed you off?  :mrgreen:

Related articles:  Frozen Assets (Snopes) * Rumors (TruthorFiction.com)

How To Cripple A Butterfly January 4, 2015

Posted by nrhatch in Life Lessons, Mindfulness, Nature, People.
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46 comments

Mickey-DiverIf we rush to comfort a baby every time he cries, he doesn’t learn to comfort himself.

If we toss a “fish” every time someone’s hungry, they won’t learn to fish for themselves.

When we rush to empathize or sympathize every time someone has a “hang nail,” we are training them to look to OTHERS to meet their needs rather than looking WITHIN for guidance.

We are encouraging them to share every minor annoyance and aggravation in their lives because it “feels good” to get attention from others . . . and we can give ourselves a pat on the back for “being there” for them.

We need not refrain from helping others when they really NEED help, but we may do more harm than good if we rush to help without allowing others the time needed to process things.

ButterflyThe best way to cripple a butterfly is to interfere with its efforts to emerge from the cocoon.

Our struggle to emerge is part of the path.

 Aah . . . that’s better!

A Sense of Wonder January 2, 2015

Posted by nrhatch in Animal Welfare, Books & Movies, Life Balance, Nature.
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42 comments

As Rachel Carson considered the impact of pesticides and DDT on the environment, she realized she did not want to undertake a writing project of that magnitude, but she knew the book needed to be written.

When every author she contacted declined to get involved, she decided to write an article, just that.

As she researched, the material grew.  She contracted to write a short book, and allocated 7 months to the project.  Two and 1/2 years later, she was still researching and hadn’t started writing.

A year before her death from cancer at the age of 56, Silent Spring was published.

The chemical companies were outraged and lambasted her.  She was called a paranoid old woman.  She was likened to Joseph McCarthy and his “witch”hunt.

It was publicity her publisher could never have afforded.

President Kennedy assigned a task force to look into the effects of DDT and other pesticides on the environment.

The EPA was born.  DDT was banned.

Rachel Carson continued to make speeches, addressing audiences about the dangers until shortly before her death in 1964.

Some authors create ripples.  Rachel Carson started a tidal wave.

Aah . . . that’s better!

“Why should we tolerate a diet of weak poisons, a home in insipid surroundings, a circle of acquaintances who are not quite our enemies, the noise of motors with just enough relief to prevent insanity? Who would want to live in a world which is just not quite fatal?” ~ Rachel Carson, Silent Spring

Hues of Green and Blue December 26, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Amazing Animals, Art & Photography, Humor, Nature.
Tags: , , , , ,
30 comments

Florida has been our home for the past 6 years.

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We appreciate its sunshine, warm sand, and gorgeous birds.

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We enjoy the greens and blues of its tropical landscape, from bay . . .

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To beach . . .

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We admire its palette even when its greens are in need of a trim.

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Due to decks and docks succumbing to climbing vegetation.

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In its preserves, waterways mirror the blue expanse of sky.

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As grasses whistle and sing while dancing in the afternoon breeze.

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Swaying palms reach majestic heights.

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Offering welcome shade from summer’s sweltering sun.

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But all is not green and blue.  Shades of pink proliferate.

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Along with the occasional burst of red.

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Aah . . . that’s better!

What colors predominate in your daily vistas?

I Am December 7, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Books & Movies, Happiness, Life Balance.
Tags: , , , , ,
46 comments

Tom Shadyak, director of Ace Ventura, Bruce Almighty, Evan Almighty, Liar Liar, Patch Adams, and other films sustained a broken arm and a concussion in a biking accident in 2007.

Despondent over the side effects of the concussion, he thought about death and, from there, began to ask what he wanted to share with the world before he died.

From those questions, he chose his next project.

In I AM, Shadyac asks some of today’s most profound thinkers, two questions:

* What’s wrong with our world?
* What can we do about it?

Several interviews touched upon the view that excess consumption and consumerism is a form of mental illness resulting from social conditioning which values competition more than cooperation.

In order to simplify his life, Tom sold his 17,000 square foot mansion and moved to a mobile home park in Malibu.

He rides a bike to work.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Speaking of I Am ~> today I Am over at Lively Twist as part of Timi’s series Did We Do Any Learning [3].

You may also be interested in Learning [1] and/or Learning [2].

Madira Bickel Archeological Site November 30, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Art & Photography, Humor, Nature, People.
Tags: , , , ,
33 comments

After admiring the Love Ladder at the Arts & Crafts Show, we continued exploring Terra Ceia Island with a stop at the Madira Bickel Archeological Site.

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Indigenous occupation of the site dates back 2,000 years.

The picnic table is of more recent vintage.

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The site is not named for the Native Americans who lived there.

It’s named for Madira Bickel who purchased the land and donated it to the state in 1948.

Money talks.

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Signs do provide some history about Native American Life for visitors.

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The park added shell stairways for easy access to the top of the mound.

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Crowning the mound, trees stand tall, decked in garlands of Spanish Moss.

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The moss, an epiphyte or “air plant,” absorbs water and nutrients (especially calcium) from ambient air and rainfall.

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Since we are not able to absorb nutrients from air, we decided our next stop should be LUNCH.

Aah . . . that’s better!

A Real Straight Shooter November 23, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Nature, People.
Tags: , , , ,
22 comments

Lumpus-MooseMy grandfather was a straight shooter (unless his sights needed adjusting).  And he always learned from past mistakes (unless he didn’t).

* 11/24/57 ~ “Deer Hunting is over ~ so this is a report on the season:

On Nov. 17, I discovered the rear sight was loose ~ I should have felt of it before but I just thought I was off on my shooting ~ it could have thrown the bullet off several feet.  This explained why the first two buck did not run.  It wasn’t even close enough to scare them.  I went to Spencer’s and got the sights adjusted. Since then I have seen several deer but no buck. Now the season is over.  I might say in passing, I hope someone kicks me if I ever start out hunting again without trying out the gun.  I have said this before.

It was nice being in the great open places and looking at what was over the next ridge. I enjoyed it. I didn’t cough at all, all the season. Couldn’t. It might scare the game.  I got 7 parcels mailed out to service men overseas. Well I must stop. Sorry to have been so slow in writing.  Deer business!

During hunting season, deer became priority #1:

* 10/24/57 ~ “In case you are tied up next week end, we might be able to try it the next after that altho deer hunting starts Nov. 9, on Saturday.  Probably I would hate to leave that.”

* 11/6/58 ~ “I just tried out my rifle and found it shoots all right this year.  The sights are tight.  I plan to go on my hill Saturday early.  I will defer coming down [to see you] till after I get a deer!” 

* 11/28/59 ~  “Leon and I went up on my hill.  There was snow and we were able to chase 5 deer around.  I saw them twice but was unable to see horns.  In all I have seen 21 deer this season but nothing to shoot at.”

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Of course, as soon as deer season ended:

* 12/15/59 ~ “Last week Friday as I came home, I hit a deer.  I have seen the insurance company in Montpelier and have their OK on getting it fixed.  It will cost $348.  I believe I have to pay $50 of it.

However, I won’t kick too bad. It gives me a new radiator, grill, hood, right fender, horn, etc. ”

Years later, he continued to chase deer around, sense of humor intact:

* 11/24/66 ~ “About Deer! It’s still running. The nearest I have come was Tuesday. I went up to the site of the Densmore School and saw something that looked like a deer. It was quite a distance away. I convinced myself it was a sumac stub. Just then a white tail flopped up and disappeared. Oh Dear!

Aah . . . that’s better!

 

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