Rainy Days and Mondays

While I was at work today this happened.

There was no time to play ball with Hannah because there was water that needed to be mopped up and countertops that needed to be cleaned and dinner that needed to be cooked and dishes that needed to be done and laundry that needed to happen (though I’m grateful for the rug in the kitchen that soaked up most of the water).

Looks like someone didn’t get her normal post weekend day of rest, because this is what’s happening.  Typically the second I sit down, a tennis ball is deposited on my lap.

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Clearly this needed to happen.

And this for me.

And this for my house mate.

The End

Cleaning Up The Forest

In the week since I last walked Hannah on one of the Greenways here in Nashville, there’s been some serious clean-up.  By clean-up, I mean that someone has come in and trimmed trees and left the branches on either side of the pathway, not that someone came by to pick up the trash that’s lying about despite the multiple trash cans that line the path.

Of course, I understand why it needed to happen – no one wants to be walking or riding a bike on the trail only to be met with a sharp stick in the eye.  Still, the feel has changed, the canopy that covered the trail is gone – there’s less shade and more open space, which makes it feel less like the forest and more like something manmade.  Which it is, of course, but I enjoyed how it felt to walk under the branches, especially when snow had fallen and it felt like I was going through a tunnel. 

It’s what we humans do – we alter the landscape to meet our needs.  We use fancy words for our intervention, like Sustainable Forest Management, which is “The stewardship and use of forests and forest lands in a way, and at a rate, that maintains their biodiversity, productivity, regeneration capacity, vitality and their potential to fulfill, now and in the future, relevant ecological, economic and social functions, at local, national, and global levels, and that does not cause damage to other ecosystems.”  Because we obviously know how to do that better than God or Mother Nature. 

Perhaps it’s just me that is skeptical of our ability to manage something that – although we’ve studied for years – is more complex than we can understand despite our best attempts. 

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When I lived in South Florida, I learned that in the early 1900’s, a species of tree called melaleuca was imported from Australia.  The plan was an ill conceived attempt to turn the Florida Everglades into a forest. Since the importation didn’t include any of the trees natural predators, the trees have grown unchecked and now cover an estimated 488,000 acres.  Today it’s a crime to possess, sell or transport the trees in Florida.  Not to worry, though, two predators of the melaleuca have been introduced and are snacking away at the trees.  I’m sure these two insects won’t cause any other problems as they make their home in South Florida.

Whenever I think about the all the stuff we’ve done to the earth, I think about two things, Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring (published in 1962) about the misuse of pesticides and it’s effects on songbirds and Big Yellow Taxi by Joni Mitchell (written in the late 60’s and recorded in 1970).  There are times when I get discouraged when I think about how much more damage has been done since the 1960’s, but then I remember that there are a lot of people and organizations out there that are working hard to make a difference like Blessed Earth.

It’s the weekend, so I don’t expect you to run out and save the world, but I do hope that you listen to this updated version of Big Yellow Taxi by Counting Crows and think about what you could do to take better care of our planet.

You’re Invited!

Date: 2/17/16

Time: Now

Place: Anycity, Anywhere

RSVP: ASAP – my mood is subject to change without notice

You are cordially invited to attend my pity party!  No snacks will be served and no party favors will accompany you when it’s over, but I sure could use a little company.  So drop what you’re doing and join me in the celebration!

**Disclaimer – by the time you read this, I’m sure I will be back in the proper frame of mind, but for the moment, I’m feeling a little sorry for myself.

This is what’s happening in my kitchen right now. 

Leaking Ceiling

Smiley Leak

Drop in the bucket

It’s been like this for several days now, though the source of the leak has changed a couple of times.  This morning my house mate had the joy of stepping into the kitchen with her bare feet and discovering that the bucket was no longer in the right spot and the rug and surrounding area were completely soaked.

It’s not that big of a deal and I know it will get fixed but it’s just so incredibly inconvenient.  It’s hard not to take it personally.  And, as is often the case, there’s not just one thing going wrong, there’s more. 

Normally I can rise above my circumstances, but tonight I’m struggling a bit.  Yes, I know I can pray about all the stuff that’s going on, and I will, I promise, but sometimes I just want to whine a little.  Or a lot.

Life’s not fair and sometimes I wonder why me.  Why do I have to go through this hard thing?  Christie Purifoy wrote about this just last week on her blog. She’s so right and what she and her family are going through is so much worse than what mine is going through. 

The truth is that I am perfectly equipped to handle everything that’s happening, even though I might not like it.  There are lots of people who love, support, and pray for me and at the end of the day, the real question is, “Why not me?”

Looks like the party is going to be cancelled after all – it just took me a little while to remember that what I really am is blessed.