Texture Tuesday...sometimes, storm is the only way



Call me lazy.  Call me predictable and cliche and overused.
Bypass these lines if your currency is nuance, if what moves you
are the minimalist gestures, if the threads of the crosshatch seams in the couch
are geographies you'd prefer for your treasure.  I can't help it.
That splinter of sky, that divisive, decisive crack, fractured something loose,
broke and birthed it all at once.  Sometimes, change is a jagged-toothed animal,
tearing the "was" out so fast my head spins, and I watch, almost drunk,
from the window as the whole earth luminesces, shaking a raw hunger
out of my bones.  Sometimes, storm is the only way to stillness, the great shaking.
How the feral animals run for home.  How even the trees bow down.

by Maya Stein

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Reprinted with kind permission from Maya Stein, who has been writing these treats
for the senses each week...a series she calls, 10-line Tuesday...
again, I thank her for the inspiration that prompted today's image.
Please do read more from her collection over here...
and her blog, one paragraph at a time, is about just that...
"looking at life one paragraph at a time."

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Linking up this week for another Texture Tuesday over at Kim's place.
Our challenge?  The "posie edition"...
check out the flower floozie awesomeness going on over THERE....
so much inspiration!

Techie mumbo-jumbo:
Shot with my DSLR, cropped & tweaked in iPhoto, then taken into FX Photo Studio Pro
where I added a Socorro effect; next into PSE, added 2 layers of Kim's texture, abstract,
soft light @ 80% + screen @ 15%
a wee bit of minor erasing & sharpening,
added copyright.

Till next time, my friends...


Beneficial waters


When it started to rain yesterday, then didn't stop raining,
and didn't stop,
and well, just continued to bucket for hours...
I decided it was time for another science experiment.
It might be considered odd (by some) to be inspired by 1/3 of an aging red cabbage but I am learning
that many mysteries worth exploring are hiding within such dregs.  So onto the chopping block it went.
Two bundles from reclaimed clothing:  100% silk on the left, and 100% ramie,
each containing the exact same assortment of ingredients (all shall be revealed later).
I'm trying to understand how different cloths absorb the same colors.
Already different, as you can see, after simmering for twenty minutes and sitting overnight.
Love the bits of spent blue cabbage sticking out...

Then I went and did something which might have been stupid and has completely altered the color
of one.
I won't know for a few days.
They are resting now.

Hopefully time will be good to me, fingers crossed.

Outside, the rainwater is causing some explosions.
Why is it that we can water, water, water with the garden hose and yet one good rain
and the garden responds like its won the lottery?!

When I planted this honeysuckle three years ago it was a puny cutting, barely six inches tall.
Now it has passed  NINE  feet.

And this is one of the reasons that I shall be a gardener until I can no longer lift a trowel.


The unbearable lightness


whisper soft...
five layers of hand dyed cloth
held (momentarily) by a single pin.

   We all need somebody to look at us.  We can be divided into four categories according to the
   kind of look we wish to live under.  The first category longs for the look of an infinite number
   of anonymous eyes, in other words, for the look of the public...
   The second category is made up of people who have a vital need to be looked at by many known
   eyes.  They are the tireless hosts of cocktail parties and dinners...
   Then there is the third category, the category of people who need to be constantly before the eyes
   of the person they love.  Their situation is as dangerous as the situation of people in the first
   category.  One day the eyes of their beloved will close, and the room will go dark...
   And finally there is the fourth category, the rarest, the category of people who live in the imaginary
   eyes of those who are not present.  They are the dreamers."

~ Milan Kundera, from The Unbearable Lightness of Being

Although I wrote (what then seemed quite profound) a notation along the margin of the page,
I did not understand this quote when I first read it in my mid-twenties...
nor did I understand that lives can be shaped by irrevocable choices.

The summer solstice has arrived
and a few frayed edges are lining up...


Someone's turning three today...


it's a BIG day.... because she's also graduating from 'Zoom to Zen'...
if ever there was a dog who needed a little less zoom and a lot more zen,
'tis our miz Quinn.

(Please remind me I said that when I'm wanting her to 
on the agility course in the future!)

You're awesome, Quinn...love ya to bits
May you never lose that amazing focus.

SMOOOOOCHES on that sweet nose...

Happy birthday, girlie!


Going to the sea...


...it's time for a dunk.
Curious to see what enhancements our salty brink may contribute
after eight long months of rest.

These cloths were wrapped around some of last year's harvest
( I first wrote about them HERE)
but that was only the beginning of their journey.

Today they learn to swim.

And I learn that I can be more patient than I think I can...

see ya later.


What I learned about running with dogs ~ Part 2


Welcome back!

{{{ In case you missed it, Part 1 can be found OVER HERE. }}}

Does this look like what you might imagine a judge's table would look like?

And this gentleman...would he fit your idea of THE JUDGE?
I think I've watched way too many Westminster Dog Shows because these folks
were not in the least intimidating.  They joked and laughed amongst themselves and made all sorts
of amiable comments about the dogs & their runs.
I didn't intend to eavesdrop...I was just on the 
other side of that fence...ahem.

While Michelle led Sam in this run, the judge's table was buzzing...they practically swooned
over his old timer adorableness.
Sam tends to make some pretty amusing noises as he's galloping around
which added to their delight and prompted all sorts of compliments on his attributes.
I just loved that they would do that.

This was a Jumpers course although there's a variety to choose from:  Hoopers, Chances, Weavers,
Tunnelers, and Touch N Go.  Participants can pick and choose, competing in as many or as few
as they want...it's completely up to you.  Another lesson learned (and what a relief!) ~ no one
is telling you what to do...
you design your day with your dog however you want & sign up for whatever suits your fancy.
That FUN factor again.

Before I saw this wall I had no idea how participants would keep track of which runs were coming up, 
in which order.
There it is ~ the entire lineup, painter's-taped to the wall,
including the illustrious poop bag dispensary below, should one have the need.

'Command Central' was in a barn...

and the gals at Mega-Dogs had the prime office space, if you ask me.
Their fingers were kept flyin' while the dogs were out flyin'...

...like this German Shepherd, who was showing No Fear.
What a beautiful sight.

But here's the little number that our group was keeping their eyes on the most...

Meet Bailey, pint-sized owner of her very own human named Ginger.
This was their first time at an agility trial as well, except they were actually brave enough to compete
(unlike some not-to-be-named happy, picture-snapping chickens).

Yay, Paws on the Rock 'Team Bailey'!

Just look at those little legs GO...
is that not the most adorable thing this side of the universe?

Turned out, these two had an  outstanding  run.

I'm sure it's not only because Ginger memorized these numbers really well,
but because these two put in lots of dedicated work, stick-to-it-tiveness and practice, practice, practice.

Did I mention practice, practice, practice?

And it paid off bigtime...HOORAAAY!

First Place!!

Look at that face...I'd say Ginger was pretty darn thrilled, wouldn't you?!

Bailey seemed every bit as pleased herself with those qualifying ribbons.
Such a terrific outcome for a splendid working pair...way tah go, you two.

Ok, so I wasn't exactly cross-eyed by late afternoon but my mind was certainly in a whirrrrr...
what an amazing day this was turning out to be...

Before my mad dash back to the ferry, I was able to watch Michelle do her stuff
with Sam one more time...awwww, I'd say he put on his happy paws!

I heard later that Sam earned a couple more "Q"s of his own the following day
and Benjamin ran great as well.
Benjamin had surgery on one of his rear legs not long ago.  Through patient rehab
and lots of careful re-training, he's back in the game...much to his huge delight, I might add.

Sometimes fortune favors the early arrivals to the ferry line.  I was granted my favorite
front row seat on my floating transport westbound...
a most perfect way to sit back and chill, and let all that I'd learned about running with dogs
filter through the memory banks.

And then I arrived home to this...
"Where ya been...watchya been doin'...why couldn't I go???"

Don't worry sweetness, you will definitely be going next time.
No doubt about it.

As long as our mojos are feelin' good, we are gonna





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UPDATE, June 5th:  Michelle McDarmont, leader of our local agility group and owner of
Paws On The Rock Dog Training, has created a brand new blog on Blogger.  Her first post
is entitled 'A Simply Terrific Agility Weekend.'  Guess what she's talkin' about?
Please visit...there are links to some videos you won't want to miss...
can you possibly resist watching Sam, Benny (Benjamin) and Bailey rock their runs?!?!
CLICK HERE  to read her post.