Tag Archives: nature

Saturday:) Signs, Signs, Everywhere Signs (Follow Your Heart)

13 Aug

“You can do anything as long as you don’t stop believing. When it is meant to be, it will be. You just have to follow your heart.”

Keke Palmer

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I really didn’t sleep much last night, as I was tormented by a feisty relentless mouse up in my attic. That’s another story for another day. So, when I woke up at 7:30, I intended on going back to sleep. But no! I knew it was only going to get hotter and hotter outside by the minute, so I got up and went for my morning walk. I love my walks.

As usual, the dragonflies were in their spot over by the pond, and they hovered around me to say good morning. There was a slight breeze and it was beautiful out. As I walked along, I saw a shape in the sidewalk that looked like a heart. I took out my phone and took a picture. I like to call it “Following my heart.” Of course, my eyes kept finding more and more heart shapes here and there. I continued to snap pictures.

It’s funny how piles of dirt or clumps of mud can look like a heart shape.
Holes in the sidewalk or shadowy indentations.
Even the stone wall over by Mr. Mike’s old house resembled hearts.
I’ll admit, the heart with dried up leaves on the right was manipulated a tad. Even Mother Nature needs a helping hand now and then.

People don’t always see the beauty or the signs in common every day objects. But, if you appreciate life and nature and the beauty in all things, great and small, there are endless signs. Always follow your heart. ❤️

Friday:) Farewell Funeral For A Feathered Friend

10 Jun

“Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures. “– The Dalai Lama

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I don’t have any pets of my own right now, as I spent way too many years taking care of great big ol’ dogs that I never was even consulted on their purchase. They just were brought home. Now, I’m enjoying my non-furry freedom. Don’t get me wrong, I love animals and they certainly love me, but it’s nice to be able to come and go and travel without vets and boarding and walking and the ever popular, endless piles of poop.

Miss Kathy’s cats love me and visit daily, and I get to kitty sit when she travels. Mr. Mike’s Bella was always over when he traveled, but he’s moved away, so I see her rarely. And don’t forget, I’m the Cardinal whisperer. I talk to the birds when I’m out walking every day.

Here comes the sad part. I went for an early morning walk, before the heat set in. It’s 96° now, feels like 105°. I started my walk when it was only 83° this morning. I had made a couple of loops around the pond when I noticed something red in the street near the curb. Oh no! It was a beautiful cardinal. It lay there lifeless and broken. My heart ached.

I checked to see if he was still alive or breathing. He looked too mangled and lifeless. I was especially sad because I wondered if he was my friendly cardinal that would always whistle a happy song from the trees as I passed on my walks. I’d whistle back, and he’d reply. Poor thing.
I know it looks morbid to show a photo of a dead bird, but he was so beautiful, and I didn’t want him to be left in the street to get run over, mangled even more. I’m lucky that there are several doggie stations with plastic bags around the pond. I walked back and grabbed one, then carefully picked up the colorful creature.
It wouldn’t be right to throw him in the trash. So, I gently laid him to rest on the shady back side of a tall tree where he wouldn’t be seen from the sidewalk. I know his remains might be discovered by some other creature, but that is the nature of nature. But, I’m hoping that my crimson feathered friend might decompose and become one with the earth, become part of nature once again. No creature, great or small, should have lived unloved and unmourned. ❤️

Farewell my feathered friend.

Tuesday:) Toni Speaks Fluent Cardinal

4 May

“The brilliant red cardinal sings a beautiful song. But, did you ever try to sing back to him?”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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My evening walks are always filled with spectacular sights and sounds and sunsets. There’s this happy little cardinal that sits up in the same old tree and warbles a happy tune whenever I pass by. He sings his song and I try my best to mimic his whistle. We talk to each other as I pass. I speak fluent cardinal now. I actually wondered if he is speaking in Morse Code, two long, three short. Maybe, ya never know.

I also talk to the bunnies and squirrels, but they don’t answer me. I’ll keep trying.

Happy Tuesday, my friends.

Saturday:) Sights and Sounds

11 Oct

“Everyday is a feast for the eyes, with soothing sounds for the ears, and sights for the soul.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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Whenever I’m not sure what to write about, I just take a leisurely walk around the neighborhood and just take in all the sights and sounds of nature.

Just a couple of blocks away, there are horses grazing in a field.

The sunset sizzles in the western sky.

The pond glistens and reflects the fiery sky.

Then, a quiet beckoning bench before the night sky dims and fades to grey.

A very nice Saturday. Now, time to put my feet up and watch a little Notre Dame Football. Go Irish!!!! ☘️

Saturday:) Sights and Sounds Abound

20 Sep

“When the soul looks out of its body, it should see only beauty in its path. These are the sights we must hold in mind, in order to move to a higher place.”

~Yusuf Lateef

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Everyone knows I’m “amazing,” but I still find myself amazed at the wonders I find along my walks. I’m not talking about glorious Colorado mountains or sunset in Paris. I’m talking about the glorious sights and sounds found right in my little neighborhood, right here on the path that I walk every day, every week, and every year for over six years. Every day is a new adventure, a new canvas of wonder.

This lonesome crane stood at the edge of the pond for the longest time. Either he was waiting for a fish to surface or he was doing what I was doing, enjoying the peaceful scenery and the glorious morning. I like to think the latter.

A welcoming bench with a welcoming view. Birds chirping in the tree tops.

Bountiful, colorful flowers along the way.

A lucky feather for faith.

An orange glowing sunset that just didn’t capture the magnificent colors nor get full justice from my iPhone camera. It was spectacular.

A splendid Saturday full of awesome sights and sounds.

Friday:) Fiery Hot Texas Days, Friends, and a Fabulous Sunset

18 Jul

“If these Texas days were any hotter, I would think I died and went to the opposite of heaven. Just sayin'”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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It was another scorcher here in North Texas. It was soooo hot, the farmers were feeding their chickens ice chips so they wouldn’t lay hard boiled eggs. (I borrowed that from somewhere?) when I went outside early this evening, around 6, the heat and humidity crushed my chest like an anvil weighing on it. I only stayed out about 15 minutes, and decided to postpone my long walk until right before sunset. That’s my favorite time anyway.

I went to Tom Thumb this afternoon and picked up a few great sale items, which always perks me up. Then, I made some phone calls, and talked to my best friend from back home a while this evening. It was good to catch up. Also, I got to FaceTime with the most adorable granddaughters on the planet. Thank goodness for technology.

I’m sure, like most of you, the extent of your activity and communication these days is done via some electronic device. That’s why it’s good to revel in the beauty of nature once in a while. I need this at least once a day. Here is my sunset from tonight. Yes! Amazing!

I walked 2.2 miles and admired and appreciated every second.

Now, for my Friday night tradition. Black Russian Friday. Cheers, my friends!

Saturday:) Some Awesome Sunsets and Skies

29 Jun

“I can’t help but stare in awe at the sky and soak in all the colors and hues that God painted in the heavens. Perhaps a preview.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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Wow, another steamy day here in north Texas. I got up early to beat the summer heat and trim my crepe myrtle tree. I was guilted into it, not being much of a horticulturist, I’ve said this many times. ” I can paint a tree or flowers. I just can’t grow trees or flowers.”

My friend Allison, and avid gardener invited me to go to Home Depot with her yesterday, and she bought a carload of trees and dirt. She talked me into one little tree. When she picked me up, I was chastised for the sad shape of my crepe myrtle and also that it was infested with aphids. Yuk! How would I know? I don’t look at such things,

So, I went out there this morning with those tall snippy cutter thingies, and trimmed the tree. I also trimmed back a few man-eating bushes that were over taking the flower bed. Then, I sprayed the tree with some buggy stuff that she recommended. I was sweatin’ bullets. I do love nature and plants and such, I just wished that God could take care of all that like he does the beautiful sunrises and sunsets.

Here’s my crepe myrtle all cute and trimmed. It was about twice the size before,

Some of my recent sunsets…

I guess sometimes even Mother Nature needs a helping hand.

Wednesday:) What Wild Wonderful Creatures Have You Seen?

21 Jul

The smaller the creature, the bolder its spirit.― Suzy Kassem
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Mother nature not only provides beautiful vistas and flora, but her creatures great and small are a wonderment to behold. My first wildlife sighting in Colorado was not only amazing, but also amusing. A herd of elk had the tourists all stopping to take pictures. (Me included.) The amusing part was the elk were walking smack in the middle of town in front of the liquor store. (My kind of elk.)


Then, I saw a mamma deer and her baby fawn munching some dry grass on the side of the road at the YMCA camp.


There were ground squirrels and chipmunks all over looking for food.

All creatures great and small. This one was very small and very cute.


This little guy was looking for food in our backpack. Not shy at all.

The smaller the creature, the bolder its spirit.” 

― Suzy Kassem

Tuesday:) Toni’s Tip of The Day…Treasure The World Around You

19 Jul

“When you treasure the world around you, you are the richest person alive.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis 

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“Looking at beauty in the world, is the first step of purifying the mind.” 
― Amit Ray

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Today was spent hiking trails, taking amazing photos, and giving my nasty knee and old worn out body a good sturdy workout. The pictures will speak for themselves.

What treasure I discovered today!

Tuesday:) To Every Season…

20 Apr

Ecclesiastes 3King James Version (KJV)
3 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace………..
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My daily walks are often the inspiration for blog posts, and today was such a day. It was a “ducky” kinda day. On my way to Zumba, I had to wait a few minutes while a family of ducks meandered across the road right outside my driveway. They’ve been strangely marauding the neighborhood the past few weeks. Usually, they are nestled by the pond two blocks away, but these crazy ducks have been sightseeing. 

  

 
Why did the duck cross the road? …I give up! They could just fly, right? If I could fly, I wouldn’t be walking. 

Now, this brings me to the sad part of the …”To every season…” Yesterday, on my walk, I saw the dozen or so duck eggs neatly clustered under a tree, waiting to be hatched.

  
So safe and secure. I couldn’t wait to see the new fuzzy babies waddling around in the pond. 

  
This morning, most of the eggs were sprawled on the grass, several feet from their safe haven. A predator? I prayed it wasn’t some mean children. I felt so sad. Then, I wondered if the duck parents saw this. Do ducks mourn, feel loss, get upset? How could they not. New life without a chance to begin.

When I looked closer, I noticed one egg on the grass that hadn’t been harmed. I had a plastic bag in my pocket, so I used it to place the egg back under the tree with the remaining two or three that were not taken. 

  
I hope these eggs have a chance to come into the world. Just when I was the most sad, I saw a momma duck under a different tree. She was either laying eggs or sitting on her brood, but it made me realize that life goes on. There are losses, and there are renewals. “To everything there is a season.” As in nature, as in life.

  
Can you see the mamma all huddled and protective under the tree? Let’s hope these eggs have a chance. New life, new beginnings.