Sunday, August 30, 2009

Rewards at the end of the day....

The drive home from work today was, as always, my reward for whatever has been required of me during the past eight or ten hours. Morning is good, but I truly love the evening - or the gloaming, as my Scottish ancestors might have said. I usually turn off the highway onto the rural roads at 7:45 PM or so and that's when the endorphins start to kick in. No more more rigid schedule...a hot bath (or cool shower)...supper...and, best of all, my loved ones waiting there at the home place.

But there are a few little mini-rewards along the way to my haven. The old black dog, for instance, that lurks near the crossroad, just waiting for me to stop at the sign. He slinks out of the brush, keeping pace with the car until I stop rolling and the time is just right...then he barks ferociously for a moment or two before trotting back to his home, head and tail high. I've made his day, as he has mine. Occasionally he is too tired to chase me, but he is always there and I would miss him if he wasn't. And then there are the two ladies who power-walk together...I've never met them, but they are always somewhere along my route and we wave as though we were old friends. How lovely that they have each other to walk with, and how sweet that they 'include' me with their happy waves. Every four or five months, there is a new litter of kittens playing in the ditch at one of the houses...there were five this time, I think. Lovely little kitties - all different colors. They are timid and race for cover , but I catch a glimpse of them before they are swallowed up by the tall grass.

Closer to home, I stop for a few chickens who have crossed the road and now desperately want to get back - they run this way and that, looking for their coop which is right there in front of them if they would only look! If I'm very fortunate, I might see a herd of deer in the field just north of the 'chicken crossing'. How many people who live in cities would love the opportunity to see a herd of deer in the wild.

I am blessed. And I look forward seeing all of my 'gloaming buddies' again tomorrow.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Watch out for wildlife.

My trip to work this morning was more exciting than expected. As I drove around a bend in the road, two deer appeared not ten feet in front of the car...a doe and her spotted fawn. A little late in the season for a fawn that young, but what a beautiful little creature he was...and still is, thanks to anti-lock brakes. Gliding over the fence in one graceful movement, they faded into the trees and were gone. That stretch of road has always provided me with poignant sightings of our wildlife neighbors. A large flock of wild turkeys live in the timber and can often be seen with their poults trailing behind as they forage along the roadway. Occasionally twenty or more deer feed in the hayfield just down the way. A blue heron stands sentinel in the creek as he waits for his dinner to swim by, and a raccoon family's eyes reflect the headlights if I happen to drive that way after dark. I wouldn't trade my little place in the country for the whole of any city.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Ordinary days...

So far this has been a week of ordinary days. Nothing big happening, but nothing bad has happened either. My loved ones are all healthy, fed and housed, all gainfully employed, free to pursue their interests and hobbies as they please, and free to worship God without fear of censure or worse. You know, ordinary days aren't bad at all, are they. In fact, a week of ordinary days may just be one of life's most precious gifts.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Ergonomically designed chairs...

Well, today was the day. Our new ergonomically designed chairs arrived at work. I sat down in mine, expecting to experience utter comfort and relaxation.... and came just about this far from tipping over backwards. Apparently you have to adjust the things before you go flopping about in them. Our office secretary rushed to my rescue and adjusted the height of the seat, the arm rests, the tilt of the back and the level of my lumbar (wouldn't my father just wash my mouth out with soap for discussing my lumbar in a public forum) and at last I experienced every working woman's dream. A chair made just for me. It even has my name on it. All we need now are ottomans for our feet. I suspect we won't be getting them though, so we'll just keep resting our tootsies on the CPU's (or whatever those things are called) under out desks as usual. We're blessed to have management who care about our comfort and well-being as we go about our duties. Life is good.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Tree frogs in the bedroom???

What a way to wake I stumbled out of bed and headed for the coffee pot, a dust bunny came to life and leaped into my path. Was I dreaming? screech would have awakened me if I was. My husband - ever the knight in shining armour - picked the thing up, dusted it off and discovered a tiny tree frog. Who knows how it got into the house or why it was lurking in the place where I keep all my spare dust. It's back outside now, enjoying the shade of a mature forsythia bush. My question is: if the frogs are getting inside, can the snakes be far behind??? Eeeewwww. I hope not :-)

Friday, August 7, 2009

August in the Ozarks

August in the Ozarks...the month that nature begins to ready itself for the winter that is to come. The changes are there, if you look for them...most plants have pretty well reached their peak and slowed down. Hummingbird feeders need to be filled more often. The creeks and streams are a little low.

We have had such a wet summer - our young trees have grown tremendously. They will need to be trimmed up a bit in the fall. Our Mimosa has gained back all that it lost in the ice storm and then some. The tiny pines and Scarlet Maple that I planted the summer I moved in now tower over the house - is there anything more comforting than coming home to a place where saplings that you nurtured now shade the lawn?

I hope you will share your own observations regarding August in your corner of the world...I'd love to hear from you.