Tag Archive | Holidays

Winter’s Wild Wonderland

Finding delight during the height of the Christmas season brings a special sparkle. I love the classic (might I say vintage?) Christmas songs we all have grown up with, Hearing them year after year brings with them attached memories. I have this my first Christmas being single been especially remembering Christmas with my brothers, and with that has brought the soft feeling of being a bit homesick.

So this year I am going home!

The week after Christmas my daughter & I will be with my brothers & their families. I have a grand-niece who I will be meeting for the first, I am so looking forward to the trip. My brothers don’t know we are coming. My sister in-laws’ and I decided to make a surprise out of it for both my brothers who think they will not see me at all this holiday.

This means a road trip with my daughter as we will be making the trek across the Cascade Mountain range from our small home town on the high desert to the big city of Portland Oregon, Affectionately known as P-town.

All of this is very weather dependent of course. because of the temperamental climate of the wild winter wonderland of the Oregon mountains. Makes me think of the Christmas son Winter Wonderland.

The trip over the mountain pass this time of year can be quite a wild adventure if caught up at 6000-7000 feet above sea level in white out conditions.  (Think good thoughts for us please)

It can also be the most Zenful trip of the year  bringing an incredible sense of peace over your whole being. This stunning winter wonderland drive over the pass very soon begins to creates a calm and quiet that gently blankets the energy inside the car. No one speaks. Everyone feels it. Our breath is literally taken by the crisp and pure beauty that lies in every direction our eyes can scan.

And the silence. the blissful silence of snow. Only the subtle tapping cadence from the studded snow tires needed for traction keep time for the orchestrated quiet.  There is no radio reception, no cell/mobile service, and there is a sense for great reverence for that kind of wild winter wonderland silence. So we honor that for a bit of time and just drive.

We are in the middle of a national forest

 A deep humble sigh escape while softly smiling. Gratitude for the gift of living amongst such spectacular grace of nature is a shared thought. Day dreams about the little cabin nestled under the shelter of the great pines, tall sentry’s guarding at its sides. Then the narratives begin. As we wind through the mountains with the back drop of the sun glancing brilliant light off the snow we begin to spin tales. The stories we tell and build with one another;  the songs we make up on the fly singing together, and the silly laughter.

All part of the magic.

….and then once again the silence will come.

Oregon’s Wild Winter Wonderland.

Merry Christmas Y’all!

©ttaylor2013

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Fall Brings An Easter Blessing

18 October 2013

 
Seeing a plant in stages of its growth is not at all unusual if you garden. And I do. 
I think of gardening as a blessing, I love to grow things wild and unruly. I love to get my fingers into the dirt in the ground, I love to make mud pies.  
I have an unusual event happening in my garden this Fall.
Every year since my two daughters were infants I received an Easter Lily from them & their father to help set the environment of spirituality for the season of Lent & Easter in our home. We are not an overly religious family, but we are deeply spiritual and Easter & the spring equinox are significant, with the traditional & symbolic gift given of an Easter Lily. 
 

An Easter Lily  (Lilium longiflorum is actually a native of the southern islands of Japan. A World War I soldier, Louis Houghton, is credited with starting U.S. Easter Lily production when he brought a suitcase full of lily bulbs with him to the southern coast of Oregon in 1919. He gave them away to friends and when the supply of bulbs from Japan was cut off as a result of the attack on Pearl Harbor, the rising price of the bulbs suddenly made the lily business a viable industry for these hobby growers and earned the bulbs the nickname “White Gold”. Today over 95% of all bulbs grown for the potted Easter Lily market are produced by just ten farms in a narrow coastal region straddling the California-Oregon border, from Smith River, California up to Brookings, Oregon.

For almost 40 years every May I would replant said lily’s outside in my gardens and flower beds. Different gardens throughout those years, and for 10 years while living in a downtown Seattle high rise I planted the plants in the apartment buildings gardens since I had none of my own. 
I could grow really healthy beautiful plants, but to get them to re-bloom again in their natural environment was something I was never successful with. They make gorgeous foliage with shiny green pointed leaves, adding much texture and different heights to my flower beds. But to bloom again in the early summer months of June as Mother Nature intended the following years never happened.
 I was okay with that,  I knew from research that to get a plant to re-bloom after being forced to bloom unnaturally is not an easy feat.  
 
This past March 2013 on Easter I was in a very different space than I had ever been; not only had I become a newly single woman at the start of 2013 I also gifted myself for the first time ever an Easter Lily. It had been 3 years since my youngest daughter survived emergency brain surgery and woke from coma on Easter Sunday 2010.
As I said my Easter 2013 was very different than it ever had been, my first alone, and my daughter was winning the fight to save her life a second time.
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After taking great care to keep my lily alive after its blooms were spent I planted it in June outside in my tiny flower bed I had created at my new little apartment. 
It was a late planting this year even for the high desert because we had a later than usual beginning to our spring with freezing night-time temperatures prevailing through May, making it impossible to start gardening like the rest of our state did in March.
So my lily finally went into the ground and I nurtured it along, making sure through that during our warm summer days it was thriving and growing strong. 
 

Last month I noticed a bizarre thing. Growing out of the original plant were two new offshoots. Two new stalks, the Easter lily plant had propagated itself. In the fall. That in itself was different from any other time I had witnessed before. Typically the lily goes dormant after its blooms have faded and dies back into itself until spring the following year. 

“Well,” I thought, “that’s kind of cool.”
 
Then… it started happening.. First one bud appeared, then another, and then both stalks created 5 to 6 buds each. 
I could watch almost daily out my window the buds turning into blooms. 
 
My Easter lily is blooming!!
In the Fall!
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By rights This lily should not be blooming! Unless my past history with Easter lily’s( that were hot-house forced to bloom in the spring) is odd. 
But even the irony of MY lily blooming is enough that I think it is very cool.  
But that it is also fully blooming in October, in the high desert of central Oregon… well .. that is such an incredible thing I am in awe with this lily.  I associate my youngest daughter’s recovery from emergency brain surgery on Easter Sunday morning of 2010 as a miracle, along with that 3 years later the reinvention of my life and my maiden Easter purchase of this now blooming lily as my Fall Easter blessing 
And I am amazed.
 
It is why I wrote about it, so I will never forget the miracle of Mother Nature’s strength and resilience. 
I think our own human spirit mirrors that strength & resilience.
 

Good Bye Fifty-Six

last hurrah

noun

plural ∼ -rahs

 [count]  : a last effort, production, or appearance  ▪ The movie was his last hurrah. [=it was the last movie that he appeared in]

Saying Good bye to 56 was not hard.  Looking 57 in the eye hard, yet still my last expressions of 56 was spent doing what my 50’s so surprisingly have delighted me with. Turning 50 was a gift, one that each year I celebrate with passion. It’s not an easy thing to reconcile with when your mind, heart & soul,  feel no less than the 30 and yet your body screams it’s not as easy as it seems.
I’m a young spirited person, believing that age is a frame of mind not some chronological state.
It’s a bit strange this saying “so long” to 56. Should there not be whistles and horns? I’ve now been married longer than I was ever in my parents home. Does that not count for something?
 But so not necessary when the “so – long” being shared is one including a welcome and a goodbye. I’m having the best hurrah of my life.
Saying hello to 57 is the sureness of myself. If not now, than when?
Taking command at 57 is not too late. It comes with more wisdom than I’d have had at even say 56.
My birthday day is the 14 of the month.
I am becoming more and more confident that sometimes I forget about the people around me.  If I have to be on one of the two teams, I will choose to be on the winning team. On the other hand, I am kind and caring and above all I care for all the right reasons.
My imagination is unique and often gets implemented shortly after the thoughts. Not trusting in second guesses I move forward when I can.
I love fiercely and passionately. This is who I am and I make no apologies for this.
Birthday’s signify that you are born again in the new entity the following year. A year when Spirit can guide you to a higher place. A place where honoring Him, and a time of grace has filled my heart of 57 years with much grace & overwhelming

Be Positive and Add 7.5 Years to Your Life: They Say~

Research shows that how you perceive aging affects how long you will live. In a study of 660 people, those with more positive perceptions of their own aging lived an average of 7.5 years longer. This effect remained after other factors such as age, gender, income, loneliness and health status were controlled.

So  I have this down it seems. I’ll gladly take the additional 7.5 yrs. Relieved that my annual doctors visit was met with good results and nothing this 57 yr old body is choosing to do is getting in my way.

Good bye 56. Good morning 57!

Still rocking out today~

©TJHELSER 2012