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Strange weeds

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

We have alt of these tiny flowers all over our yard. They are really like a weed and seem to be around the place all year long. I know it is a type of weed and since I've misplaced my Wildflowers of Arkansas book, I can't identify it. I've even done a web search to find it.

I always wonder if many of the weeds and wild flowers we have growing in our area couldn't be the next big discovery for a cure in medicines. We never know what these lowly little plants can provide us. We tend to walk on them without thinking or even noticing them. Could this lowly little plant yield the cure for cancer or Alzheimer's. We may never know.

But we need to take time to stop and notice the little things in life. Are we too busy that we can't see what God has placed before us. Next time take time out to "smell the roses" along the way.

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ANGORA4 1/15/2009 6:52PM

    Hard for me to see, but looks like "gill over the ground", also called snakeweed. Does it have tiny purplish flowers?

If so, here's what Wikipedia has to say about it: " While often thought of as a weed because of its propensity for spreading, Glechoma has culinary and medicinal uses which were the cause of its being imported to America by early European settlers. The fresh herb can be rinsed and steeped in hot water to create an herbal tea which is rich in vitamin C. The essential oil of the plant has many potent medicinal properties; the plant has been used for centuries as a general tonic for colds and coughs and to relieve congestion of the mucous membranes. The plant has been demonstrated to have anti-inflammatory properties. It has also been claimed to increase excretion of lead in the urine."

A lot for a tiny weedy thing throughout my lawn!

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BLUESTARMOM 1/15/2009 5:51AM

    Thanks for that reminder. I've been feeling lately like my life is one big rush. I'm going to make an extra effort this week to slow down and enjoy the little things. I hope you're having a fantastic week!

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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

I thought I would share some of my photos I'm calling my "winter art". Sometimes the starkness of winter shows us many things we don't see during the times that there are leaves on the trees. We can see further and though we don't see much in the way of color, there is a strange beauty about the winter.

I'm always ready to see the season's change and can already see the daffodils and crocus plants breaking the surface of the soil. I've notice a few iris have come back up in the flower bed I thought I had cleared. The small star flowers are blooming and on the sunny days when the temps get up into the 40's and 50's the fireants come to the surface as well. Everything comes in it's season. Just as our life has seasons.

I just found out a very dear friend of mine has been ill on the brink of death. She is a few years older than me and also has rhumitoid arthritis and is totally deaf. She doesn't have internet and lives out of town, so the only way we have to communicate is by letters. I just received this letter from her telling me about still being in a nursing home doing PT and recovering. As long as the mail takes to get to me, she is probably home by now. I must make a trip over to see her before she passes to her next season. She is a wonderful Christian and a teacher of the Word and a great prayer warrior.

Here I am waiting for a new life to be born into our family and her family has been by her bedside thinking they were losing a life in their family. Seasons come and seasons go just as life comes and goes. Like the ebbing of the sea.

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ANGORA4 1/13/2009 11:01PM

    Love the lichens on the branch. Such a lovely feathery gray.

Hope you will have a chance to visit your friend. They cycle of life is natural, and we love the coming of new life. It's good to be so accepting of the other side of the cycle. While they won't be missing us, we do miss their company.

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The wonders of Moss

Monday, January 12, 2009

I am loving my walks now. I enjoy looking at nature and looking at things with a child's eye to learning. Today I found moss. The picture is of holly berries that have fallen into the moss.
We have alot of moss around our place. I had been told they only grow where the soil is poor. Most of our soil is rocky but I decided to read up on Moss.

Moss is an ancient plant and where most green plants have 2 chromosones, moss most of the time has only 1. It lives in shade and needs water to not only live but to reproduce. There are approximately 12,000 species of moss. Some mosses can dry out and then completely come back to life with water. Moss has had lots of uses down through the ages. The Japanese still use it today in their gardens and thought to add a sense of calm, age and stillness to their garden scenes. Moss is also used in floral arrangements and for other decorating uses. We sometimes buy peat moss to add to our house and garden plants. Peat moss is also mined for fuel and also in smoking malt in the making of Scotch whiskey. Phagnum mosses were used as first-aid dressings on soldiers' wounds, as these mosses are highly absorbent and have mild antibacterial properties.Some early people used it as a diaper due to its high absorbency.. In the UK it was traditionally used to extinguish fires as it could be found in substantial quantities in slow-moving rivers and the moss retained large volumes of water which helped extinguish the flames. This historical use is reflected in its specific Latin/Greek name, the approximate meaning of which is "against fire". In Finland, peat mosses have been used to make bread during famines.

So this lowly little plant is really something quite unique and with worth. We may think we are lowly little people in a great big world and that we have no worth but like the moss, we are one of God's creations. We have worth and are unique or He wouldn't have made us. He has given us a unique world full of wonder and awe and we need to take care of not only the world we live in, but also the bodies we live in. Just as the moss needs fresh water, we need water to have everything function in our bodies as they should. Moss need shade from the hot burning sun. We need some sun just as the moss needs light to live, but we, like the moss, we don't need to scorch our skins with the burning rays. Moss need nourishment from the soil and rain just as we need the proper nourishment from the best foods. So we can learn even from the lowly moss.

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ANGORA4 1/12/2009 10:44PM

    You have such a wonderful eye, and way of describing things. I, too, am a moss lover. I used to dry little bits of it, some look just like miniature ferns. And then use them to make notecards. Little bits of moss and pressed tiny mushrooms. So exotic, and yet so simple.

By the way, thanks for the pot of tea! My mother has a fiesta ware teapot that looks just like that pot, even the same color!

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Wolf Moon

Sunday, January 11, 2009

"Full Wolf Moon - January Amid the cold and deep snows of midwinter, the wolf packs howled hungrily outside Indian villages. Thus, the name for January's full Moon. Sometimes it was also referred to as the Old Moon, or the Moon After Yule. Some called it the Full Snow Moon, but most tribes applied that name to the next Moon.
If skies are clear Saturday, go out at sunset and look for the giant moon rising in the east. It will be the biggest and brightest one of 2009, sure to wow even seasoned observers.
Earth, the moon and the sun are all bound together by gravity, which keeps us going around the sun and keeps the moon going around us as it goes through phases. The moon makes a trip around Earth every 29.5 days.
But the orbit is not a perfect circle. One portion is about 31,000 miles (50,000 km) closer to our planet than the farthest part, so the moon's apparent size in the sky changes. Saturday night (Jan. 10) the moon will be at perigee, the closest point to us on this orbit.
It will appear about 14 percent bigger in our sky and 30 percent brighter than some other full moons during 2009, according to NASA. (A similar setup occurred in December, making that month's full moon the largest of 2008.)
High tides
Tides will be higher, too. Earth's oceans are pulled by the gravity of the moon and the sun. So when the moon is closer, tides are pulled higher. Scientists call these perigean tides, because they occur when the moon is at or near perigee. (The farthest point on the lunar orbit is called apogee.)
A full moon rises right around sunset, no matter where you are. That's because of the celestial mechanics that produce a full moon: The moon and the sun are on opposite sides of the Earth, so that sunlight hits the full face of the moon and bounces back to our eyes.
At moonrise, the moon will appear even larger than it will later in the night when it's higher in the sky. This is an illusion that scientists can't fully explain. Some think it has to do with our perception of things on the horizon vs. stuff overhead.
Try this trick, though: Using a pencil eraser or similar object held at arm's length, gauge the size of the moon when it's near the horizon and again later when it's higher up and seems smaller. You'll see that when compared to a fixed object, the moon will be the same size in both cases.
More lunacy
If you have other plans for Saturday night, take heart: You can see all this on each night surrounding the full moon, too, because the moon will be nearly full, rising earlier Friday night and later Sunday night."

I took this excerpt from MSN and thought it was really good. I happened to be outside yesterday as the sun went down and got to see the moon. I commented to Sonny about how bright it was and then heard on the news late last night that it was a "Wolf Moon". It got my curiosity up about it. It is amazing how our universe is so connected and we in turn are connected to it. The moon phases control our tides and the tides control our weather. And even control our sleep cycles. I know I don't sleep as well on a full moon.

God placed all these to work together to allow changes to occur in our world. Why do we need such changes. Well think about it...we would get mighty bored if we didn't have changes. Same old thing day in and day out. Then it brings beauty and cleansing. Have you ever watched the wind...it blows the leaves around and moves them from place to place. I think of it as God's vacuum cleaner or broom and he sweeps up the debris. The leaves that are blown around are eventually crumbled and the rains stick it to the ground and it returns to dirt and it adds so much to the dirt. It is God's way of naturally building up the soil and fertilizing it.

I can really say that the moon is beautiful and only hope your sky is clear enough to get these views. We miss so much sometimes staying inside and going to and fro working and being busy in general. Stop and take time out to just enjoy what God has provided.

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ANGORA4 1/12/2009 8:12PM

    Sorry to say, we've been all clouds here, and missed it. Know what you mean about being inside and missing things. Every night I checked the animals at the same time, but one night I got busy, and went out a bit later than usual. Too late, as it turned out.

Wouldn't you know, not only were the northern lights out, but in COLOR!! And I missed them! The most gorgeous reds, one of the rarer colors to have an entire aurora of, and certainly here. My friends took photos, but it just wasn't the same. While I've seen a few, only once have I been "in" them. With them directly overhead. I was pulling up the driveway, and commenting on how the row of lombardy poplars were all lit up.

Then I realized the poplars were at my mother's house, not mine, and we had cut the entire row of them down 20 years earlier! It was the aurora, all in white. They danced and changed overhead, it was like being under a giant broadway curtain. You had the feeling of being part of it, "in" it. Not at all like looking at a picture.

We'd see a lot more of that if we were just out and about more.

And God's way of changing things makes life possible. The moon lifts the seas, and brings in the tides. Which helps mix the water, bringing nutrients to new levels. And like the giant vacuum cleaner, helps cleanse things. Brings wonderful shells to the shore for us to admire. Brings food to the hungry.

Same with the wind. Blows seed to new locations, creates soil for more life. Strengthens the trees. I remember when they built the first Biosphere, proving we could exist in a 'bubble'. Only the trees would grow so high, and fall over! They needed the wind to make them strong, to build a good root foundation. Without it, they would fall over from their own weight. Same with the forest trees. When you cut down the outer trees, leaving the inner ones, you are asking for trouble. Because they weren't in the strong winds to strenghen them. And when the wind comes along, it is too much, and they usually blow over. We're cutting up such a tree now.

We need those things in our lives, those variations that challenge us. They give life variety, they bring new things into our lives, they make us appreciate what we have, and they strenghen us. But only if we make the effort to get out of our shells and move forward.

Comment edited on: 1/12/2009 8:13:57 PM

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Let Sleeping Dogs Lie

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Have you ever watched a dog sleep. Or do anything for that matters...they do it with their entire being. They put everything they have into doing what they are doing at the present moment. When they chase a rabbit..they chase it with all their might. If they sleep, they seem dead to the world. We can learn a lot from a dog. They are faithful and a true friend. They are happy when they see you and don't get upset if they don't get the best bone as long as they get a bone. They don't get mad at you if you scold them but will come running back for another pet.

You know if we lived our lives the way a dog does, we wouldn't have near the problems. We would be completely happy whether we are sleeping in a hut or a mansion. We would always keep our friends and we would really just enjoy life in general. And we would sleep a whole lot better too.

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ANGORA4 1/11/2009 12:26AM

    How true this is. When you learn to see beauty in the simple. When you learn to be content whatever the situation. Then you have true freedom.

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