Monthly Archives: February 2010

Lights and a Birthday

Today marks a year that I have been blogging, and that seems like an opportunity to tell the origin of my blog’s name. I only now looked on Wikipedia for the vesperal hymn “O Gladsome Light,” which when I hear or sing it always imparts something of the reality of the Trinity of which it tells. When I first thought of writing a blog, there was no other name that ever came to mind, even though I feared it might be presumptuous, to put it mildly, to take that title for my own.

But just as we Christians are to be “little Christs,” so I see that all the gifts I write about come from Him, and anything good that comes from me is a lesser light emanating from God. So I post a candle picture in thanks to Him. I like the little dot at the bottom, a lesser, mirrored light. My tiny candle, or reflection of a candle.

As we are reminded in the first chapter of James: “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.”

O Gladsome Light of the holy glory
Of the Immortal, heavenly, holy, blessed Father,
O Jesus Christ….

Flowers of Matins

One lovely thing about attending more Matins services during Lent is being able to see the flowers in the early morning light. When I walk out the church door to my car, I reach for my camera, and –more often than not, it’s missing!

This morning I found it in the pocket, and walked around a while snapping pictures.

This first one of a camellia has a stray redwood twig hanging on. We have a lot of those cluttering up the garden beds, as there is at least one tall Coast Redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) on the property. Check out the link if you are unclear about the different types of redwood trees.

Long ago when I was in labor of childbirth with my Valentine baby, a friend brought me a bouquet of daphne for my bedside; that was my introduction to the heady scent of this plant. I never realized until this month that I’ve been looking at it growing at church for several years.


This afternoon I had another photo opportunity and my camera was home on the computer table where I’d been uploading these pics. So now, I’ve put it back in my purse, and I’m considering an outing tomorrow for the sole purpose of photo-shooting, to catch more glimpses of early spring in my neighborhood.

Kindly or Beastly

My raccoon friend hasn’t been around lately, that I’ve seen. And most of the wandering cats have been scarce, now that Blackie has marked the back yard and comes several times a day to see if anything is in the bowl. Actually, Blackie is now only his nickname, and his real name is now Jim, after Huckleberry Finn’s fugitive friend.

I’m surprised at myself, calling that ‘coon My Friend. But when I first blogged about him, Janet at Across the Page told me about the book at left, which I promptly ordered and have received.

It tells about a lady who is generous toward a mendicant raccoon, and later is the happy recipient of an inadvertent good deed (is that an oxymoron?) performed by the beast.

I admit it made me think more kindly of the fellow I saw, though he is as big as a bear. Some people have cautioned that raccoons wandering about in daylight might carry rabies. But others have said it is a myth that raccoons are primarily night animals. They are perfectly healthy and happy foraging in the daytime.

Lately I’ve been waiting for Jim to show himself before I put anything in the bowl–mostly to avoid feeding the raccoon. Since I do live in suburbia, I suppose my neighbors would not appreciate it if I were to start encouraging woodland creatures to visit more than they already do. Raccoons are cute, but those opossums that might follow after are hideous.

February Travels

It’s almost three weeks since I drove north to the home of Seventh Grandson; that’s the trip that began with cherries. I thought that before the seasons change any further I’d better make my report of the expedition.

Soon after the sighting of cherries, I was driving through country with bare-branched orchards. They always look so gorgeous as I speed along; when I stop to take a picture my efforts never capture the majesty and expanse. I think these must be almonds, because I’m pretty sure they are not walnuts or pears, which I would expect to be there.

Farther up the state from the volcanic peak by which I saw the cherries, there is this one. We have a whole string of such dramatic mountains running up the western states, and on our travels we can mark our progress by spying them in the distance long before we get close.

When I got within five minutes of my goal, the rain had turned to snow, and several inches fell that night, after I snapped some pictures to compare with last summer’s shots. You can see Spike the deer next to the yellow shed that is in the middle of a snowfield now.

Things are much milder, however, than last month when a wild snowstorm dumped record amounts of snow on this homestead, knocking out power for days and keeping my daughter and her husband busy melting water on the stove and carving out tunnels to outbuildings.  The next two snowy pictures are of that episode, from which they have largely returned to normal.

For several days I worked to get to know that dear little stove, but I’m not sure I ever figured out how to keep a slow fire going; it was either too hot, or it went out.

20 years ago I bought these boots from Eddie Bauer for the rain, but they served pretty well for the small amount of tromping around in the snow I did.

A lucky new cat is living in the house, bringing the total temporarily to four. This one is called Little Cat, because the householders are hoping to find another home for the foundling, and don’t want to give him a real name yet. He has upset the feline social order to the point where various ones are snarling and facing off several times a day, especially near dinnertime.

If Little Cat is still needing a home after my remodeling project is done, I hope to adopt him myself. He has the cutest cat face I’ve ever seen.

While I was there I finally finished putting a drawstring into this bag that contained the 7th Grandson Quilt. You can see it with just a ribbon around it and the quilt inside, and now with its black string to match the checkered bottom.

It’s a weirdly shaped bag because I made it from leftover fabric to match and house the quilt, but I thought perhaps someday it could hold an overflow of stuffed animals or some blankets or ???, in which case the drawstring would make it much more handy.

7th Grandson himself, of course, was THE focal point of my stay. He doesn’t like lying on his tummy on the floor, but it’s thought good for the boy to do a little Pilates work there. Children these days spend so much time in car seats and such. I caught his photograph before he became totally irate.
Before I had to return home, rain washed the snow off the trees, and the sun came out. Soon I’ll be loading up the car to make another visit! It will be interesting to see what changes have occurred in one month, and what adventures might lie in my path.