Love, Laughter, and Life

Adventures With a Book Lover


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Happy Hump Day Haiku Challenge: mystery

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layers, patterns mix;

tightly furled, mystery

blankets secret core

 

mystery by Angie Quantrell

 

I spied this gorgeous tree and cones during a winter walk. With such fascinating texture, design, and beauty, I just had to climb a snow bank to get close enough and snap a few photos. So glad I did!

What mystery have you seen lately?

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#TBT Annabelle and The Garden

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My little girl, Annabelle! How she loved the garden and being outside and snuggles on my lap. I miss her mama personality. As you can see, Anna Banana owned the garden. The house. The yard. The couch. The bed. The chair. As any true cat does.

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This Throwback Thursday flings us back to when we first started a little kitchen garden in our old house. This triangle plot used to be cement. TOTAL concrete. Ugh! After my honey worked his fingers to the bone removing icky cement, I went right to work, planting tiny rows of radish, lettuce, beans, peas. We added flowers, parsley, thyme, and even strawberries. And every year, I continued to remove bits of broken concrete that worked its way to the surface.

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It bloomed, grew, produced, this little potager, and gave me hours of pleasure. It also transformed over time to include a fence (to keep tiny grands from trampling tender shoots), blueberries, a host of insects and pests, and a wide variety of vegetable experiments and floral specimens. The very best year of production was when our neighbor found and homed a swarm of honeybees. Oh, did we miss those bees when he moved!

Do you have a potager? A secret garden? A weed patch?

I’d love to hear.

 


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Happy Hump Day Haiku Challenge: winter

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drifting, snarled, stuck

captured, unprepared to stay-

winter lock in place

 

winter by Angie Quantrell

Happy Hump Day Haiku Challenge! Join us. Write a Haiku about winter or being stuck. Post the link or your Haiku in the comments so we can all read it.

Welcome!


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Monday Moments: The Weather App was Correct=Snow!

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Lately we’ve been required to take the weather app predictions with an entire shaker full of salt (instead of a few grains).

But not today! The app said snow, and snow is the happening event. I think they are quite a bit off on the amount of snow they predicted, as I spent over an hour shoveling and my tracks, trails, and cleared areas disappeared beneath more inches of the pretty fluff before I finished.

What is .2 of an inch anyway? Not the mountains of snow piled around the RV and shop. Do they measure snow AFTER they melt it in a cup? I keep sweeping .2 off the deck. And the next time I look, I need to do it again. Percentage of error seems to be quite high.

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.2 frozen in my hair

Blowing wind, heavy snow, cold air. Winter is back. With near 50 degrees last week, I was thinking spring, bulbs popping up new flowers, pleasant walks, sunny skies. Wait. I thought the groundhog did not see his shadow and spring is coming early?

Winter or not, I love the white stuff. So beautiful. A bear to drive in (I watched a semi back down the hill near us when he couldn’t make it to the top). Slippery footing. Cold. So peaceful. Quiet.

No late start today. I think that is going to change tomorrow. Get out those snow clothes back out. It’s sledding time!

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.2 melting on my glasses, soaking my hat and coat

What’s the weather in your neck of the woods?


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Happy Hump Day Haiku Challenge: layers

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not just tree, but host

verdant layers, companions;

growing harmony

 

layers by Angie Quantrell

I took this photo while visiting Claude Monet’s Giverny outside Paris. I’m happy to see layers of life and co-existence in the plant world.

Welcome to the Happy Hump Day Haiku Challenge! Please join the fun by adding your Haiku to the comments. Maybe one of the following will spark an idea for you.

Things with layers: cakes, clothes, buildings, rock formations, sandwiches, paintings, the sky, the Earth, casseroles, make-up, gardens, winter beds . . .

 

 


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Snow Day Tea Party

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In our area of the northwest, we often have winter snow days or late start days when the roads are slick early in the morning. Just recently, an overnight heavy wet cold snow fell, causing slippery roads and perfect conditions for a late start (for school to start). It’s only 2 hours late, but one can have plenty of fun in those 120 minutes.

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First up was sledding down the pasture hill. The 5 grands did a wonderful job sharing one sled, pairing up with each other and racing to see who could travel the longest distance down the slope.

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Once the proper bright red noses and cheeks were acquired, we trooped inside for a snow day tea party, all ages included. This was not the traditional apres snow play hot cocoa and cookies, as both Nana and mommy (Auntie) were fresh out of hot chocolate mix. This was find what’s in the pantry and enjoy it to the fullest. So tea it was.

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Tiny tea cups, spoons, saucers, and tea pots were filled with tepid herbal tea. Honey dripped stickily into cups and was stirred in. Spills were mopped up with place mats and towels, and peanuts stood in for tea cakes. For one young girl, those tea cake peanuts tasted marvelous when they were soaked in tea and scooped out with a spoon.

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A fun time was had by all. Pinkies up for the next snow day late start!

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Once the 3 older grands went to late school, the 2 younger ones had another type of snow day.

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Flowers in France #TBT

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Ten years ago this spring, my honey and I spent 3 weeks in France. Most of our time we stayed in Paris, where flower shops and coiffured gardens displayed dazzling blooms. I loved gazing at the gorgeous blooms. And, according to my external hard drive, spent much time clicking photos to remind myself of their beauty.

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The first two photos are favorites because of the price tags. Without those French words and Euro price tags, one would assume the flowers could be found on any continent during the proper season. Well, maybe not Antarctica or the Arctic.

at monet's water lilly pond

One of my most favorite memories was taking a day trip to Giverny, the home of Claude Monet. I have been a long time admirer of his impressionistic work. With settings such as these, how could he NOT paint? Breathtaking! If you squint, you can see his featured bridge back beyond the willow trees.

 

bedroom up, studio down

This is a part of Monet’s home. We took a walking tour inside. I don’t have any photos of the inside, I think because we were not allowed to take pictures. It was inspiring to see the places he worked, slept, ate, and enjoyed family life. I would move in in a second!

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The flower gardens are all that-and more! One could spend days exploring and not see it all. Actually, I want to return one day and spend the entire day soaking in the beauty.

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Oh, the flowers that grow! Below you can see the green bridge covered in tourists. Alas, I attempted photos without the crowds, but you can see I created a false impression. 😉 Plenty of others had the same ideas we did about a day in the country.

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Have you been inspired to travel some place special? What captured your imagination and led you to visit and explore?


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2018 Word of the Year: Roots

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My 2018 word of the year was ROOTS.

It sounds odd now, when I say roots, but by choosing it, I claimed the focus of concentrating on my roots.

Not only my spiritual roots, but the roots of who I am as a woman, mother, daughter, sister, wife, Nana. The importance of roots in the natural world, my love of nature and gardening, hiking, photography-all played a part in my word choice. My roots anchor me to who I was, am, and will be. With my roots firmly attached to Jesus, I know I am secure and safe from the storms of life, ponderous and damaging though they be.

My art project incorporating the word ROOTS didn’t pop into my head until well after the year got underway. Using watercolor paints, permanent markers, glitter glue (after all, life can always use more sparkle), ink, and rubber stamps, I created a piece to remind me of my word of the year.

My art was not stagnant the entire year. As I found more Bible verses or sayings, had thoughts about the word, or saw something missing and filled it in, I added to my project. I really like the finished look. It occupied a space on my work bulletin board where it was easy to see.

Tomorrow I will share my new 2019 word of the year. I’ve had some thoughts about it, some unique applications already in place. Just recently, the image for my art project popped into my mind, but it is not yet on paper.

Read about The Year of Peace here.

Do you choose a word for the year? Maybe you choose a phrase, sentiment, or goal. I’d love to hear!

 

 


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Happy Hump Day Haiku Challenge: blue

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it’s not what you think,

this winter shade; cold, blue light-

snowdrifts cast shadows

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blue

by Angie Quantrell

 

Happy New Year! Welcome to the first Happy Hump Day Haiku Challenge of 2019. I hope you’ll join the fun by commenting or writing your own winter Haiku.


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Snow Play in a Writer’s Life

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After a writing day of sitting at the table, this person had to get some moves on! Writing is great for the mind, but deadly for the backside.

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After a bout of shoveling slush, I fixed the snowman’s melted face. He’d lost his ability to see, smell, and smile, poor fellow.

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I walked to the top of the hill to see what I could see. But all I could see was the other side of the hill

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I made my own rectangular snow walk, smartly going round and round, turning sharp corners and attempting straight paths. Apparently I can’t walk a straight line.

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But still, the designs in the snow are intriguing, and shadows cast by the melting sun throw footprints into blue relief.

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If only I were a raven, my bird’s eye view would snatch hidden gems from the mystery that is snow and sun, freezing and melting, white and blue.

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Did you play outside today?