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Glad to be alive..

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Today is one of THOSE know the kind when you wake up full of the joys of Spring and glad to be alive.
I'm sure you've all had them.
Well, today is my 'Glad to be alive' day.

We'd a good hard frost again last night so the early morning air was chilly. Everywhere was clothed in a crisp white layer.
I looked back at my footprints across the lawn, showing black against the crispy whiteness.
I wandered near the pond watching the fish gliding around flashing glints of silver, gold and orange.
As the sun rose and warmed everything, shining it's golden glow around the garden the crisp white frost melted.
Flowers opened, the bees came buzzing in and even a butterfly graced the first open flower of my magnolia.

Two swallows arrived here from Africa way yesterday afternoon and they were busy building up the front entrance of last years nest that winter has ravaged, swooping down for the soft mud in my bog garden and flying with beaksful to rebuild their nest under the eaves.

A loved up pair of collared doves were billing and cooing to each other before mating precariously on the top of the fence and the frogs were singing love songs in the pond and laying great clumps of transluscent spawn.

I stood amongst all this, in my night attire, steaming cup in hand, and drank in the beauty of the day.
Nature's wonderful and I'm so glad to be alive.

The loved up collared doves

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LILSUNFLOWER 4/29/2010 8:21AM

    The title of this blog grabbed my attention.

Great! Glad you shared. Love the picture - what camera/lens? How close were you for the shot?

Take care.
LIL emoticon emoticon

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MARTHA-ANN 4/13/2010 6:22PM

    Good morning to you and thankyou!

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STILLPOINT 4/13/2010 9:05AM

    Well, good morning! What a wonderful Blog. Thank you!!!

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MARTHA-ANN 4/13/2010 8:42AM

    thanks Spirit and Kat, life's good! emoticon

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KAT573 4/13/2010 7:37AM

    What a lovely written passage celebrating LIFE, a gift beyond compare!

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SPIRITSEEKER2 4/8/2010 7:54PM

    I can't read long things, sorry- but your picture is fabulous !!! Happy you had a great day !!

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MARTHA-ANN 4/8/2010 6:20PM

    Thanks everyone, it was a beautiful morning. I love it now it's lighter and tend to get up and go out into the garden early when it's peaceful and no-one else is yet up.
I don't feel too good this week due to an hereditary complaint but to stand out there is so refreshing emoticon

Comment edited on: 4/13/2010 8:40:55 AM

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MOM2ACAT 4/8/2010 5:43PM

    Days like that are truly a gift!

I love that picture of the doves. They look very similar to the mourning doves that are in my area; I love to listen to them coo also.

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NEELOJ 4/8/2010 10:57AM

    Such a happy day!! Isn't it great!!!
Thanks for sharing your morning! I felt like I was walking around with you!

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MARILYN1260 4/8/2010 10:23AM

    Martha-Ann, reading your Blog post gave my day a happy start too. I'm looking forward to hearing more and seeing pictures of your beautiful grounds and gardens. Continue to enjoy this wonderful day.

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A really enjoyable day.....

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

I'm a genealogist.
I've been tracing my family tree for over fortyseven years now and have accumulated an awful lot of names and met an awful lot of people!

Last week a quite distant cousin got in touch with me, her dad, who's eightyeight, was brought up in the village but left at the age of fifteen when his mother died. He and his siblings were farmed out to various relatives and brought up separately. His daughter has been researching his family tree and eventually someone put her in touch with me. Seems they're relatives from a twig off a branch from my mothers side of the tree.

The upshot is they came to visit on Monday and we had a really enjoyable day.
I knew they were coming so had dug out various photos, books etc that had anything to do with them or the village and he was very happy recalling things from seventyfive to eighty years ago.....Hey! steady on, I know what you're thinking, she's not that old!!.....well no, but I could remember the same people about thirtyodd years later so we managed very well.

The time fairly flew past and even though I'd never met them before it seemed as if I'd known them all my life. We're going to stay in touch and I've put him in touch with two of his school friends who are still living in the area and his daughter is arranging visits with them.

Isn't friendship wonderful?
It reminds me of the wonderful friends I've made on's just like one big happy family too!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KAT573 3/22/2010 8:09AM

    I have no idea how one does geneology! My sis in law, now deceased, had a strong interest in that but never shared how she did it. My lil sis started it but never did much with it after a trip to Ireland got her sparked up. SOME day!

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CAROLYN0107 3/12/2010 11:16PM

    If I were in the States I would be doing more genealogy. Might do it when I retire. It is my brother who is our gemologist in the family. I did get to see a cousin though last fall who I had not seen for about 45 years so that was fun.

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MARTHA-ANN 3/5/2010 7:18AM

    thanks everyone, it really was an enjoyable day and he left so happy it was worth it just for that! emoticon

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SPIRITSEEKER2 3/4/2010 3:44PM

    How fabulous !!!!!!!!!! so cool, glad you could get together and help him get in touch with old friends too..

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NEELOJ 3/3/2010 10:54AM

    How exciting!! I love to talk to the "old timers" in the family!!
Did you think to turn on a tape recorder. I am always wanting to do this but if they know it is on then they don't talk as easily.

Family is so special. I have been lucky to have family members, on both sides of my family, work on family history. We have family trees back to the 1600's!!
Five years ago two branches of my great grandfather's tree had a family reunion. Many did not even know each other existed! And none of us had met before. Now we keep in touch and it is wonderful!!

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DOLLBABE56 3/3/2010 7:14AM

    How wonderful for all of you. I have the family tree on my dad's side. It is so interesting what I have found in it. You did a wonderful, thoughtful thing when you shared your finds with them.

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words...glorious words!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

One of my Sparkteams is Shutterbugs, a fun group for anyone out there who loves taking photographs.....good, bad or otherwise!
Every week we have an assignment which we interpret any way we's amazing to see see all the different ways this can be done.
This weeks assignment is 'Your library & books'.

I live in a little village which doesn't have a library.....BUT.....we do have a mobile!
A mobile is a very well kitted out van which appears every Wednesday afternoon and brings a wealth of books, CD's, videos etc and with internet accesss.

It got me thinking this assignment.....I love to read, always have.....anything & everything. Really though my first love has to be poetry.....Oh! and history! .....Oh! and geography!....Oh! and art!...Oh! everything really!!!
Where would I be without my books?

You can look things up on the internet but it doesn't give you the same thrill as opening the covers to those hidden words which are going to fill your head with a picture.
And everyone has a different picture!
There are millions of interpretations for the same sentence!

You lose yourself in some intriguing tale of mystery, sorrow or plain old adventure...
You transport yourself to different lands...
You really meet the people in the text...
You are the hero or heroine...
You are the story!

You marvel at the artists work...
You marvel at far away places you know you'll never visit...
You marvel at the world and all it contains...
You wish you'd invented something...
You wish you'd been there when history was made...

BUT, you are there...
Books take you there...
They cut the mediocre and make it special...
They allow you the freedom of flight of fancy....
They give you happiness...
Or sadness...
Or intrigue...
Or love...

Where would I be without my books?
This anonymously written poems sums it up perfectly.

I've travelled the world twice over,
Met the famous, saints & sinners,
Poets, artists, Kings & Queens,
Old stars and hopeful beginners.
I've been where no-one's been before,
Learned secrets from writers and cooks,
All with one library ticket
To the wonderful world of books.

Our village library flight of imagination!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARTHA-ANN 2/24/2010 5:57AM

    yes, you can request books, CD's etc and go on the internet!

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SPIRITSEEKER2 2/18/2010 10:18AM

    That is great you have a book mobile !!! at least it is something.. you can request books too right?? I love recorded books and have a library of reference books- its addicting.....

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MARTHA-ANN 2/18/2010 3:54AM

    Thanks everyone.
It's not my poem Kat, it's an anonymous one often found printed in the frontispiece of books...very apt I thought.
Silver I love books, when we were little my dad put a shelf up in the bathroom as we were always reading in mam always referred to it as 'going to the library!'
Jo my dad went blind towards the end of his life and listened to audio books all the time. He always joked he heard them in instalments as he invariably fell asleep when he put them on and had to replay them.
I love quotes too...anything really. My mother once told someone I'd read anything, even the toilet those days it was that hard paper called 'izal' and the word was printed on every sheet!!!

Comment edited on: 2/18/2010 11:08:00 AM

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CAROLYN0107 2/17/2010 11:09PM

    How nice you have the mobile library that comes to your village.

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SILVERWITCH59 2/17/2010 9:10PM

    Great Blog :) I also love to read.I spent many a summer in the library reading books as a kid emoticon

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MOM2ACAT 2/17/2010 5:46PM

    I love to read! It's my little escape, and I try to read at least a little bit each day.

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NEELOJ 2/17/2010 5:42PM

    Great blog! I love to read. And I like a "hands on" book too. But I have discovered audio books just this winter. In Kansas the state has a free online library where you can check out books to read on your computer or check out audio books.
I am on my 5th audio book. I listen to them while I exercise. It makes the time go fast.

I really enjoy quotes and short poems too.
Wanted to share this quote with you....
"You will be the same person in five years as you are today except for two things: the people you meet and the books you read."
- Charlie "Tremendous" Jones

Have a great day!!

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KAT573 2/17/2010 1:11PM

    Is that YOUR poem at the end, luv? It is neat! I loved your blog and I feel the same way; and I am very very picky about what books I will actually purchase, and give my library MUCH of my support by borrowing theirs and of course, returning them late. LOL!
Thank you for sharing this with us! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Spring's on her way...

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Spring's definitely on her way.....

At last after all the snow, rain and bitterly cold winds we've had there are galanthus or snowdrops out in the garden. They're back under snow at the moment but bravely poking their little heads through.

There are buds on the magnolia and the helleborus niger or Christmas rose is in full flower.....makes you feel good to be alive!

The welcome helleborus niger looks beautiful on a cold winters day.

galanthus in the rockery, they're back under snow again now after the week-ends new fall.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CAROLYN0107 2/7/2010 8:09PM

    Very nice flowers. Fun!

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MARTHA-ANN 2/7/2010 5:34AM

    thanks everyone, I don't think we're out of the woods yet, they're predicting more snow for mid-week!! emoticon

Comment edited on: 2/17/2010 4:54:37 AM

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    Don't you just love the first signs of spring!

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SPIRITSEEKER2 2/2/2010 7:26PM

    I need the warmer weather to get here faster..:0)

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VALI_T 2/2/2010 6:41PM

    I love springtime because of all the flowers....until they start giving me really bad allergies and then I'm wishing for winter again. (I really wish that we could skip by Albuquerque's summer altogether. Too hot emoticon

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MOM2ACAT 2/2/2010 3:16PM

    Beautiful flowers!

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NEELOJ 2/2/2010 10:47AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
This is me doing a happy dance!! LOL

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The good thing is, it's not as bad as last time...

Friday, January 15, 2010

The 2nd of February 2008 was a red letter day for me.
I got my hearing back after being deaf for fifteen months due to a benign tumour on my eardrum.
Now, almost two years later, I'm almost back to square one.....I've a nasty earache and I can't hear properly in my left ear!

It began a couple of weeks ago when my ear began popping and crackling every now and again, usually when I was laid down, but there were long periods inbetween them and they weren't enough to worry me.
Then last Sunday I began to get intermittent earache over most of the day and night. The next day it was fine but on Tuesday the earache began again. At first it was just small twinges with good periods inbetween, not too bad, then on Wednesday the pain came on in earnest and hasn't gone away and now I can't hear well either. It feels like I have something in there, it's painful and wet and it's sizzing and popping constantly.

Today I went to have swabs taken and have been given antibiotic drops for an ear infection. I've been told my ear is gloopy inside, it's swollen and painful too.
My psoriasis is pretty bad in both ears at the moment, which isn't helping as they itch constantly and you can't get at it to stop it!
I've to go back in a week with a view to seeing my specialist again if the swabs show anything bad.
The medicated drops I've been given make me feel even deafer and it really stung as they went in.
I haven't had much sleep as it seems worse when I'm laid down so I'm hoping the medication kicks in quickly and I can sleep tonight.

I really am thankful for small mercies.
It sounds as though I'm moaning a lot but there is a positive's not as bad as last time.....I can still hear in one ear!!! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARTHA-ANN 1/16/2010 2:40AM

    Thanks everyone, the painkillers have kicked in a bit and I managed intermittent sleep emoticon emoticon

2nd February 2010.
Bit of an update for anyone interested.
It's a perforated eardrum and inner ear infection.
It's healing nicely but still swollen and infected so I'm on antibiotics.
The pain's gone and the feeling like I'm about to fall over has gone too.
Just time now...

Comment edited on: 2/2/2010 5:04:30 AM

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GINGERSTARDUST 1/15/2010 11:53PM

    emoticonsorry to hear you are having problems ,sending good wishes for a quick mend and for some rest !!! emoticon emoticonGinger

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SPIRITSEEKER2 1/15/2010 6:25PM

so sorry for your earach.. take care, I hope it feels better ..

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CAROLYN0107 1/15/2010 4:15PM sorry about your ear problems. I'm glad you can hear out of one ear at last.

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SUEJENN 1/15/2010 3:54PM

    When I was a kid you didn't take your kid to a doctor for earaches. I had a lot of earaches. I remember my mom grinding an aspirin between two spoons and then stir it with jam. After that I was treated to a warm drink with honey, lemon juice and amber whisky. Ugh! Can't drink the stuff even now. Just the smell reminds me of the pain. Thank goodness these days we have better options at our disposal to treat the pain! I wish you well on this journey and hope the news is good.

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SILVERWITCH59 1/15/2010 3:30PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticonHope you will be on the mend soon xo

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NEELOJ 1/15/2010 11:09AM

    I am so sorry Martha!!!
I use to have ear aches as a child all of the time and I can remember the pain. And like you say, you can't get to the itch or pain to do anything!! It can be very intimidating!!

I will be thinking of you and saying a prayer.
Maybe you can take lots of pictures with your camera to take your mine off of it!
Keep in touch!!

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LOOZINITNOW 1/15/2010 8:06AM

    You are definitely not moaning! That would be very annoying. You are in my thought and prayers!

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    I'll pray for a quick recovery.

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