Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Positively Summer Morning Coffee Klatch

by Mauverneen


“Summertime is always the best of what might be.” ― Charles Bowden

Summer mornings for me are best spent outdoors, in the morning sun, with a good cup of coffee. The world is still peaceful, not yet fully awake. Maybe that's why the animals like it. I have been fortunate, these past few years, to live on the edge of a wood. So, I take my summer mornings with joy, and hope for a good day as I sip that coffee. And many mornings, I have company...

Of course, there is always Bailey, hoping for a cookie.

There are always all types of birds


The squirrels always try to crash the party - but they're always fun  to watch
And sometimes, the mother deer will bring out a baby or two

And on occasion, we get the unexpected!

Luckily this one was only after some apples!


As always, words and photos are my own, and require permission to reprint.
However, feel free to share the blog in it's entirety. In fact, I encourage it!
Coming Soon!   MauveOnTheMove.  My travel blog!
 See more photos at http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/1-mauverneen-blevins.html
                      and visit my website: http://mauverneen.com







Tuesday, July 4, 2017

INDEPENDENCE DAY


by Mauverneen

INDEPENDENCE
Synonyms: self-sufficiency, self-reliance, self-subsistence

Happy Independence Day!  July 4th – the day we Positively Celebrate our freedom as a nation. 
Very often, when I hear the word freedom I get this ringing in my head – “freedom…freedom…freedom…”  It’s Aretha Franklin belting out those words in her song ‘Think’!  " Freedom – freedom – freedom – yeah freedom…"    It always makes me want to dance, which I don’t think is too inappropriate for today. 

There are different forms of freedom – freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom from oppression, freedom from a dictator, freedom from an abusive spouse or parent.  Freedom of and freedom from.  Freedom brings responsibility; being accountable for one’s self and not infringing on other people’s rights - even when they don’t believe the same things we do.
The revered Lady with the torch
There have been wars and revolutions throughout history in the name of Freedom.  I think sometimes we forget how dearly our own country paid for our Independence.   

We have a number of symbols of our freedom here in the U.S. – the flag, the eagle, the statue of liberty, among others. Betsy Ross is credited with sewing the first American flag.  (Did you know A flag expert is called a "vexillologist?")  It was also a woman, Emma Lazarus, whose poem "The New Colossus" appears on the base of the statue of liberty.  Francis Scott Key of course wrote the lyrics to the Star SpangledBanner, something that I hope is still being taught in schools. It became our national anthem in 1931.

I think the National Mall in Washington D.C. is one of the most exciting places to see some of our monuments to freedom.  Laid out on about 1000 acres the mall really is the people’s place. The boundaries of the mall are the Capital building to the Lincoln Memorial, and the White House to the Jefferson Memorial.

Lincoln Memorial, Washington, DC

Washington Monument, Washington DC
Several years ago I was fortunate enough to spend some time walking along the reflecting pool, the section between the Lincoln Memorial and the Washington Monument – a good sized piece of real estate – and was totally impressed.  It’s a beautiful area, anchored by the two monuments just mentioned, with other memorials in between and further out.  On the other side of the Washington Monument is the two mile green mall where protesters often gather, exercising their right to freedom.  I wish every American could see our nation’s capitol at least once in their lives. Not only is it impressive, but it’s a wonderful history lesson that instills a sense of pride in being an American. 

In Philadelphia, there is the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall and in Boston there is the harbor and the Old North church where the lanterns were hung to alert the militia that the British were coming. In New York there is of course, the Statue of Liberty on Ellis Island and FreedomTower, built on the site of the World Trade Center.
In South Dakota there is Mount Rushmore with it’s carved faces of presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt.  It was built as a ‘shrine to democracy' by Danish-American sculptor Gutzon Borglum and his son, Lincoln, although a state historian named Doane Robinson is credited with conceiving the idea of the sculpture.  It is far more impressive in real life than it is in pictures, with faces 6- ft tall or, to put it in perspecitve, the size of a 5 story building. 

Mount Rushmore
Civil War Re-enactment
There is Chickamagua, Fort Sumter, Antietem and Gettysburg.
There is Selma, and Montgomery, and Birmingham, Alabama.
There is Wounded Knee and Little Big Horn.
In Texas there is the Alamo and in Hawaii there is Pearl Harbor.
From sea to shining sea.
Different wars, different fights, different freedoms.

We enjoy our beautiful Monuments to Freedom as well we should and revere those graveyards that honor the fallen who have defended that freedom.  For they deserve to be honored.  And thanked. Profusely.

In the midst of our picnics of hot dogs, burgers and sodas, our dips in the pool or the lake or the boat ride on the river, in the midst of our brightly lit, loud, colorful fireworks, let’s all try to stop for a just a minute and think about what we are celebrating.  And then get back to dancing! 


Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves.  Abraham Lincoln
Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.
                                                                                                          Ronald Reagan
                                                   



As always, words and photos are my own and require permission to reprint.
However, feel free to share the blog in its entirety. In fact, I encourage it!



See more photos at     


                     Visit my NEW website  MauveOnTheMove.com

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Positively Leaving The Nest

by Mauverneen




      I watched those baby robins from the day they hatched. Yesterday, they tested their wings.
It took just 14 days.
      I would peek into the nest every morning, just to see if they were all still there - there were four. I was prepared to put anyone back into the nest who fell out. The bigger they got, the more I worried that would happen. They began to look pretty crowded. But every day, there were four. Until yesterday.
      When I peeked in I saw only two. I immediately looked around, wondering where the other two had gotten to. They were nowhere to be found.
      Suddenly, one of them flew from the nest, little wings flapping, as it landed in the grass, a few feet away. I watched as it hopped off into the taller grass surrounding my garden plot.
      Realizing the fourth one would probably do the same, I grabbed my camera. Sure enough, within minutes, out he flew! This one eventually made it under a bush.


      Watching the yard from the deck, I hoped to see mama Robin come and find her little ones, but the sight of a huge hawk landing in a nearby tree had me running into the yard. "Not the babies!" I vowed. Immediately five other birds flew from nearby trees and chased the hawk off. I was relieved. They take of their own.
      I have not seen the babies since. But I have seen mama and papa robin, who took turns feeding them constantly while they were in the nest, nearby with food in their beaks. I tell myself the babies are safe and the parents will feed them and teach them to fend for themselves and that they will make it out into the big wide world.

      It was sad to see them go. I hope they come back for a visit. Aunt Maureen misses them.
     

As always, words and photos are my own, and require permission to reprint.
However, feel free to share the blog in it's entirety. In fact, I encourage it!
Coming Soon!   MauveOnTheMove.  My travel blog!
 See more photos at http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/1-mauverneen-blevins.html
                      and visit my website: http://mauverneen.com

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Positively Spring Life

by Mauverneen


“It is spring again. The earth is like a child that knows poems by heart.”  - Rainer Maria Rilke

      To think of Spring is to generally think of flowers, and trees bursting into bloom and grass becoming green again. And rain. It is a time of new life. Not only for the plants, but for the animal world. Babies of the animal world arrive in spring - calves and lambs and geese and squirrels and birds....
      I am waiting for the day the mama deer will bring her babies out very early one of these mornings to let them play in the open field. I drive to the park where mother goose takes her babies for a swim. 
      Here at the house a robin has built a nest in a rose bush that climbs the wall just outside my back door. I would never have noticed it except that I passed too close one morning and she flew out suddenly, scaring us both. I tend to give a wide pass now to the rose bush and the nest. I want Mrs. Robin to be comfortable and to hatch those babies. She does leave occasionally, to find food I suspect. When she does I have taken the opportunity to rush over and take a quick peek into the nest. At first it was bare - just brown twigs. Then, lo and behold I saw four blue eggs! Today I peeked again. I saw no blue, but something soft and feathery. I will keep you posted!  

“The bird dares to break the shell, then the shell breaks open and the bird can fly openly. This is the simplest principle of success. You dream, you dare and you fly.”   - Israelmore Ayivor

As always, words and photos are my own, and require permission to reprint.
However, feel free to share the blog in it's entirety. In fact, I encourage it!
Coming Soon!   MauveOnTheMove.  My travel blog!
 See more photos at http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/1-mauverneen-blevins.html
                      and visit my website: http://mauverneen.com

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Positively Nothing for Granted

by Mauverneen
It’s hard to imagine life without a lot of the things we take for granted. Transportation for instance.
 Late last summer I traveled to Utah to visit my oldest daughter and her husband, who had just moved to Park City. We spent a wonderful day in Salt Lake City viewing an auto museum, seeing a couple of  beautiful mansions, having lunch and visiting the Mormon Tabernacle, to which we made a return visit on Sunday morning to be part of the live broadcast of the famed Mormon Tabernacle Choir. If you are ever able to witness that, do not pass it up.  It is both inspirational and awe-inspiring. 

But what stuck in my mind most was something else. Something that would have been easy to miss.

The Mormon Tabernacle is part of a complex also containing the Temple, an assembly hall, and of course a museum - all worth seeing. There are also some monuments and sculptures in various spots throughout the grounds. One such was the monument to the Mormon handcart pioneers. Those intrepid souls that crossed an unwelcoming, harsh land to establish a new city.



Here is the inscription:
"The Handcart Pioneer Monument is a tribute to the thousands of hardy Mormon pioneers who, because they could not afford the larger ox-drawn wagons, walked across the rugged plains in the 1850s, pulling and pushing all of their possessions in handmade, all-wood handcarts. Some 250 died on the journey, but nearly 3,000, mostly British converts, completed the 1,350-mile trek from Iowa City, Iowa."


They walked. Walked. 1,350 miles. With all of their belongings, and sometimes their children, on a tiny cart. 

Indeed it is hard to imagine life without a lot of the things we take for granted. Transportation for instance. 





As always, words and photos are my own, and require permission to reprint.

However, feel free to share the blog in it's entirety. In fact, I encourage it!  

                      and visit my website: http://mauverneen.com