Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Appreciation on Memorial Day

Yes I do appreciate the freedom that gives me the chance to feel safe and happy on this day as I remember those who gave their lives. As I was buggy-riding again, I felt like shouting, "FREE!" Free to be me was my teenage mantra and I had initials for it: O2BFRE2BME. It all started when I realized that numerous members of my family were men who fought in wars. I understood that kind of freedom very well. Soldiers fighting wars and not coming home made us free. There were two young men on the street where I grew up who never came back. Their mothers put special flags in the door windows. (I was only a very young girl but knew it was a terrible loss.) 

To continue to be able to take pictures of nature's beauty is empowering. This series starts at home on Memorial Day. My neighbor put the flag out for me. 

The "Eleanor Roosevelt Purple Iris" are doing well this year, though I am unable to walk down and pull weeds. They are OLD!
The chives are growing and taking over mother's rock garden, That's OK. I like seeing them thrive.
Down the road the neighbor's white Iris are in full bloom and very beautiful and pleasing. Her gardening efforts are rewarding to many.
There are several bushes of flowers with green and yellow leaves growing in front of their home. I do not know what they are but they sure are charming! Later found out that they are 'Euonymus variegated and wine colored'.
Around and on the backside bank of the lake there is a section with the little yellow flowers (that look like dandelions, but are not) covering the area. I think my dad called these Yellow Hawkweed. They are also everywhere else at this time with their little yellow heads full of pollinating bees.
Down the road a little further, what was once a well-tended flowerbed has now gone wild but the Foxglove still blooms.
Forget-Me-Nots have found their sunny, dampish spot and cohabit with Buttercups.
I plan to go out another day for discoveries of newer and different exploration of the land I love. Buggy works well, steers easily, recharging is simple and easy for me — curiosity satisfied for now. It's all good. 

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Monday, May 30, 2022


The roads have turned dusty again and it is very annoying when a car or truck whizzes by me, knowing it makes such a cloud. It is almost like the driver is angry, but onward I go, traveling slowly and enjoying nature's gifts in the area. I only took a few pictures as I was having a bit of difficulty avoiding the terrible large potholes in one area. 

It is rhododendron time and their beautiful blooms prevail over the countryside. The good news is that they were FULL of bees!

As I rode the back roads, I saw red clover, purple sage, buttercups galore and many other wildflowers but the woodland flowers always grab my attention. This variety with four petals is called Dame's Rocket. They are fragrant and smell like cloves. Rocket reflects the super-rapid growth in the spring and the "dame" in the name marks this flower as a favorite of women and mothers in medieval flower lore. 
And then there were dried out  leftovers from last year still standing! I thought they were pretty too. I think it is a variety of wood sedge grass. How are they still standing after winter? Hmmmmm......
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Sunday, May 29, 2022


My firstborn turned 66 on the 26th. My middle daughter turned 62 today. I baked a cake. They are spending this weekend together so phone conversations and greetings were the day's highlights. She'll get a piece of her cake after returning from the annual celebration of their May birthdays. 

It's a carrot cake with raisins, not nuts. Well it stuck in the bundt pan so that is why it looks so lumpy! The icing is not as thick as it looks - honestly! It is covering lumps! Today's birthday daughter is full of sweetness. Thank goodness that she lives nearby as she is a big help for me. Her beauty goes way more than skin deep.

Saturday, May 28, 2022

Symbol of Freedom

Thoughts on a Trip to Philadelphia

I touched the Liberty Bell today

And somehow though crowds around me pressed

They weren’t really there at all

But seemed so very far away.

Standing near me I’m sure I saw

Hundred, yes, a thousand souls

Of patriots come and gone

Who stood within the modern hall.

I sat in an alabaster church today,

Not my own small one of stone,

But one of brick and wood and wavy glass.

I listened there today and never heard

Her history long and famous surely true

But heard instead the pastors gone but not forgotten

Who helped to form our nation’s strength

And courage gave to all who came to listen.

I saw her make the flag today,

And wondered as I walked

How long it took to fashion it

From all the scraps and bits about.

By that sunny window she surely sat

To see the stitches better and make the knots to hold.

Then a cup of tea she must have had,

To ease the hand and strengthen heart and soul.

I walked the hallowed halls today,

And there I saw the empty chairs

Where once the legions sat

Who formed our laws and set our pace

For all the years that since have passed.

I sat there too and wished I might have had

One small part to play

Or one small song to sing, or thought to say.

I rode a bus today across the miles

And back in time two hundred years or more

But years uncounted went before

Just two thousand laid the base

When He taught of love and saving grace.

Safely back on land that’s mine,

I thanked thee God for all I’ve known

Of love and family, friends and satisfying work.

Yes, I touched the Liberty Bell today,

And somehow never felt the metal hard and cold,

But felt instead a spirit warm and firm,

The touch of hosts of saints, the hands of destiny.

And then I saw a vision true and pure,

My Country ‘Tis of Thee

And yes, I’m really sure

“In God We Trust.”

Pauline Nulton

March 27, 1976 

Memorial Day


I was brought up to be respectful of our American flag and all it stands for. I pledged allegiance to my flag every school morning before class started. My family always had a flag on a pole in our front yard, putting it up every morning and taking it down at sunset. The lives lost in all of the wars when protecting our country were remembered with dignified and solemn ceremonies. I have red white and blue in my heart, especially as I age, realizing the sacrifice that was made for our freedom. In 1947 at 11, I wrote this poem. The train had stopped in Morristown NJ, the town where we lived and we were there! I went aboard that train with my mother and brother. I saw what it carried!

Patriotism ruled in those days. Entire families waited on the train station platform for this special happening in our small town.

The Freedom Train - Complete Piece

Oh Freedom Train we’re glad to say,
you’re like the flag we use today.
With royal colors, red and blue,
Inside we’ll go to look at you,

Oh, papers rare, and very old,
Are precious more than mints of gold.
With rights secured will always be,
So safe and pure for you and me.

Slogan: The Freedom Train is a symbol of freedom.

By Geraldine, 1947


Original Freedom Train with an Honor Guard Detachment of 29 United States Marines in their dress blues who guarded the train and served as interpreters. The Red, White and Blue Diesel Electric Streamliner traveled on a 37,160-mile tour which began in Philadelphia on September 17, 1947, traveling to all 48 states, and ended on January 22, 1949 in Washington D.C. 
It was the only train-set ever to operate in every state, operating on 52 different railroads. Over 3 million people went aboard the Train during its stops in 326 cities and towns across the land. At many of the stops, people waited in line more than six hours to go aboard. The highest single-day attendance was 14,615. The Freedom Train housed America's most precious documents and other national treasures, including the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, one of the 13 original copies of the Constitution, the Emancipation Proclamation, the Gettysburg Address, the Iwo Jima flag, the German and Japanese surrender documents that ended World War II, a precious original of the Magna Carta, written in 1215.                  

Friday, May 27, 2022


James is now twelve years old and aging fast! He was carved by a friend just learning how to do it after cutting down the magnificent Blue Spruce tree, and the result was perfect and wonderful. You see, I had shown the carver a photo and asked him to create the face of my maternal great-grandfather but have it a bit whimsical. He did just that! The beautiful pine tree had to be cut down as it was badly infected with spider mites according to the arborist. I had him check to see why it was dying. The fact that a pine tree stump has lasted this long is unusual. Yes, bees, ants and worms have all established homes inside of him. He is picked on by woodpeckers as well.  There is no keeping up now with his internal damage so I'll go on dressing him with garlands and honor as long as he stands. James is the "Spiritual Guardian of Cabin Tranquillity." 

April 2010

May 2022
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James Marshall Folkner and wife Malinda Ann

The name James means "supplanter." Supplanter means someone or something that takes the place of another.

The name Marshall means "steward." Steward means manager or someone who acts in the stead of another.

James Marshall Folkner is my maternal Great Grandfather.

"James, Spiritual Guardian of Cabin Tranquillity," is named after him, in honor of my Mother's Grandfather, her mother's father. He even looks a bit like him.

Wednesday, May 25, 2022


First we had heavy rain and a limb from the clothesline tree came down in the road. Could'a been worse. Yardman cleaned it up yesterday when he came to mow.

Henry is happy now sitting with his friends on the porch. My daughter brought him a tuberous begonia (after the storm) and I'll watch it grow larger and more beautiful.
I managed to grab my cane and pick some Lily of the Valley, which grows everywhere around the cabin. It was my mother's favorite fragrant flower and I love it too.
Now please understand that the following images are not creations of iris beauty but of colorful joy for me. They are hodge-podge photos. The rain event had them bending over and I was compelled to bring them in. I talk to them too!
Actually purple is my least favorite color but I do enjoy the company of these, especially since my mother planted them years ago and they still bloom every spring. 
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