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Hello my dear readers. I have been absent for far too long and have missed posting to this blog. Illness crept around the corner, grabbed my by the lungs, squeezed me, and landed me in the hospital, where I still am today. I managed to contract an odd variety of pneumonia. Never had this before and do not ever want to have this again either. Today, I am actually feeling a lot better and felt like creating a post.

The challenge for today’s WordPress Photo Challenge, Cheri has chosen the topic “Today was a good day.” Because I am stuck indoors, with a tiny window allowing me to see the tops of pine trees, I decided that I would share some favorite photos with you of what I would much rather be seeing. This will make my day a good day.

Seeing my dog Astro.

Astro

Astro

My cats….

Madison.

Missing Ms. Madison

Missing Ms. Madison

Toby.

Toby

Toby

Scrappy and Toby.

Is it OK if we play with this box?

Is it OK if we play with this box?

I would include my husband in these photos but I do get to see him every day when he visits.

I have missed you all! I am not sure how I will be feeling tomorrow, and if I can do it I will post again tomorrow. You take care and be well. Thank you for stopping by! ^..^

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Christmas is not so much about opening presents. It is a day that brings us closer to the ones we love. It’s a special time for us to share with our family and the friends that we hold so dear! My wish for you is a day full of love, laughter and joy!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

Have a wonderful day!

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Christmas 2013 - Photo by Alastair Forbes

Christmas 2013 – Photo by Alastair Forbes

It was an innocuous looking ornament. Plain. Gold. Shiny. No one would give it a second look. But Jilly did. She leaned forward to look at it closer. With a whoosh she was pulled in to Christmas past.

Startled, she looked around her and found herself in her parent’s home. A voice over her shoulder said, “Welcome back my darling.”

She turned quickly and saw her mother standing there. Her Mother’s hands reached out embracing her daughter. Jilly breathed in deeply taking in the fragrance she remembered that her mother always wore. Tears welled in her eyes.

“Mom!” she said choking back a sob. “I have missed you so much!”

“Silly girl! How could you miss me when I have always been here,” replied her Mom now holding her out at arm’s length.

Jilly thought, “You have been gone for almost 10 years.”

Her Mother reached out and rested her hand over her daughter’s heart. “I am always here,” she said.

Jilly drew in a deep breath of surprise and found herself back in 2013 looking at a golden ornament on the tree. She knew that despite her Mother being gone that she did live on in her own heart!
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Thank you once again Alastair Forbes of Sunday Photo Fiction for this flash fiction challenge! The rules of this challenge: Write a short story of 100 – 200 words that has a beginning, middle and end that goes with the photo provided! If you would like to try your hand at this, click here!

Have a lovely Sunday, and thank you for taking the time to visit with me today!

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Three years ago in June our pup Astro chased a cat up a tree. I was able to get it to come down bribing it with a can of cat food. He hung around for a couple of days and two weeks later returned and never left. This would be our sweet kitty Toby! Here is a photo of this adorable boy.

My first night with Barb and Paul

My first night with Barb and Paul

Of late we have been having regular visits from another cat. This one still a juvenile, and with a tail. Toby has no tail. We suspect that Toby and this kitty might be related. What do you think?

Our new visitor

Our new visitor

Now the hair is shorter on this kitten, but the coloring is so similar.  Notice the striping and the orange in the face and the pink nose.  Check out the markings on Toby’s feet and legs.  In the coming photos check out those features on the new kitty.

Now, unlike Toby who was a little love bug right off the bat, this little guy is a bit shy and only last night let me touch him. This morning, this kitty let me catch some photos that I thought that I would share with you…

A huge yawn!

A huge yawn!

One lovely kitty!

One lovely kitty!

We have a bird feeder in the front, and here is the baby on the prowl for the birds at the feeder!

On the prowl

On the prowl

What do you think?

The Face to Love - Toby

The Face to Love – Toby

Are they related?

Have a great Saturday, and if you are in the hot zone, stay cool! Thanks for stopping by!

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This week’s subject for the WordPress Photo Challenge is Companionable.  I pulled together what I see as forms of being companionable and I hope that you will enjoy this series of photos!

One must feel quite comfortable with one another to sleep nose to nose!

Companion Pigs

Companion Pigs

And after a hard day sometimes we need to lean on one another.

Lean on me!

Lean on me!

What better way to spend an afternoon than to take a swim with your family…

Swimming with the family

Swimming with the family

Or better yet, with your best buddy!

Friends out for a swim

Friends out for a swim

Sometimes just hanging with friends is good too!

Hanging around with friends

Hanging around with friends

Or sharing your favorite rock.

Sharing a boulder with a companion

Sharing a boulder with a companion

Hanging around with your Dad too can be a nice way to spend time.

Spending time together

Spending time together

I hope that you liked this post which focuses on being companionable by spending time with those you love and care for! Thank you to WordPress for this challenge!

Have a great Friday and thank you for stopping by!

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With a very heavy heart, and tears in my eyes, I wanted to let you know that I will be taking the week off from blogging due to the loss of a very special family member: Marianne Beacham.

Celebrating 90!

Celebrating 90!

Marianne was my husband’s mother, and she was my friend.

We just celebrated her 90th birthday this last holiday season. We will miss her greatly!

To Marianne: I loved you and you will always remain in my heart! Thank you for being my Mom too! This post is for you!

In memory...with love!

In memory…with love!

Until I return, I wish you well!
Barb

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Here in the U.S. when we think of Christmas we think of the grandeur of the trees, the lights, the gifts that we give to others, and we think of Gingerbread Houses! What would Christmas be without a house made of gingerbread, frosting and candy? I found the spirit of the holiday at Bucky’s with their annual Gingerbread House show, and I thought to myself what a perfect thing to share with you my readers! In this post you will see all kinds of Gingerbread Houses. I salute the honoring of this tradition, and the imagination of those who constructed the wonders I am sharing with you today!  If you really want to see the detail, click on the photo to enlarge it, and then use the back arrow to take you back to this post…Enjoy! We start off with Winnie the Pooh and Piglet too! Two of my most favorite storybook characters!

Winnie the Pooh and Piglet too!

Winnie the Pooh and Piglet too!

What could be more perfect for the foothills than a log cabin made of pretzels with a roof of Triscut crackers?

The log cabin made of Triscuts and Pretzels!

The log cabin made of Triscuts and Pretzels!

I thought this one was really good too. It is Rafiki from the movie “The Lion King” presenting Simba.

Rafiki presenting Simba to the world

Rafiki presenting Simba to the world

This gingerbread creation of course had to include those rascally hyenas!

Bansai, Shenzi and Ed - the hyenas from The Lion King

Bansai, Shenzi and Ed – the hyenas from The Lion King

Wandering along in this little village of gingerbread, I come across the abominable snow man!

The abominable snow man!

The abominable snow man!

Now let us take a look at another part of the village…

The village of Gingerbread

The village of Gingerbread

Of course there was the lion and the lamb!

The lion and the lamb

The lion and the lamb

And let us leave off with a message from Santa…

Santa's message for the day

Santa’s message for the day

Did all these gingerbread and candy creations make you hungry? I am heading off into the kitchen! I hope that you have a most amazing day today! Thanks for the visit! Again, happy holidays!

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This week’s WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge is to share with you photos of what Thankful means to me…This had me thinking for quite a while about those things that I am thankful for. There are so many things that I am thankful for: Where do I start?

I am thankful that I shared the years that I was able to with my parents.

My Mom and Dad

These two amazing people brought me into this world and they loved me, cared for me, taught me, and supported me. I miss them both dearly, and while they are gone physically, they are still around me and let me know this is some surprising ways!

I am thankful to have in my life my family and friends.

My husband Paul and my son Astro sharing the love

My little girl Madison

My little boy Toby

My friends? Well, they would rather not have their photos posted!

I am thankful that I have a job and a roof over my head. I am thankful that I am able to put food on my table.

I am thankful that my writing and photographs are well received by the world! Thank you to all who follow me and to those give me “likes” on my posts! I am also thankful for the friends that I have made through my blogging, and in no special order, thank you to Gaz, Conor, Kat, Penny, Z, Russel and Christine!

Thank you to all who take the time to read this, and to all those in my life! Now go and have a lovely Sunday!

Check out other posts on this challenge: WP Weekly Photo Challenge: Thankful

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We recently took a hike into the woods to see our hermit friend that has made the forest his home. While sitting there enjoying a cup of tea with him, we started talking about life. He gave us some words of wisdom which I thought that I would share with you!

* Cruel words cannot be unsaid.

* Every path, no matter what path it is, always has a few puddles.

* The best sermons are not the ones heard in church, they are the ones that are lived.

* It is best to keep your distance from skunks and bankers.

* You don’t have to be a big person to carry a grudge.

* If it isn’t bothering you, don’t mess with it.

* Everyone has the same family, they just look different.

* When you find yourself in a hole, stop the digging.

* Know that the biggest troublemaker you will ever meet is the one that looks back at you in the mirror every day.

* Drink upstream from the deer.

* Good judgement comes from the experience of a lot of bad judgement.

* Speak kindly, love generously, live simply and care deeply. Leave the rest to the Universal Spirit.

I hope that you find his words full of wisdom, and I wish you a fantastic weekend!

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Growing up I was brought up to respect my elders. Were you? I am curious about this because today I witnessed something between two people, one younger, one older, that disturbed me immensely. So much so, that I thought that I would write a blog about this issue.

I learned through my life that there is a certain wisdom that a person achieves as one grows older. As a matter of fact I wrote about this in my blog “The Buffalo Side of Double Nickels.” Knowledge comes with age. However, not everyone gets it.

When I was growing up I thought that I knew it all. My parents were wrong about everything. But as I added on the years, while I was not always given a reason why to do or not to do something by my parents or other elders, I began to discover the way of things in the world. I learned and I learned a lot of lessons the hard way. And I learned a lot from folks older than me, which reinforced why I should respect my elders.

One thing that I have learned living the buffalo side of double nickels, is that one does not denigrate anyone in anyway in front of other people. Doing so just makes you a bully. And we have all read plenty in the news recently about bullying. I learned that if you have something to say to someone, and you are not in agreement, or what you have to say is negative, you do this face to face and not in front of others. Doing so will make you appear to be the small person that you really are.

One thing that I do know is this: Listen to what someone older than you says to you. And, think about why they are saying to you what they are saying to you. Are they trying to help you grow? Are they trying to impart the experience of their years to you? Respect their experience! And respect that they are trying to help you from possibly making mistakes.

What do you think?

I look forward to your answers and comments.  This poll will accumulate data for a period of one week only.

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