This is little Miss Gloria sitting beside her big brother Georgie. I named her for Gena Rowlands' character in the movie 'Gloria.' (Forget about the remake with Sharon Stone, it's horrible). Gena Rowlands' Gloria is strong, feisty, brave and doesn't take any crap from anybody...just like my Gloria.
She's soooo tiny! A couple of weeks ago, two demons masquerading as sweet little girls talked me into taking her. I was planning on placing her with a friend but they had just adopted a kitten two days earlier. So, I'm her Mom now and that officially puts me in 'the crazy cat lady' league.
Merlin loves her and she loves Merlin. Malcolm (not in this photo) has yet to warm up to her.
She loves to play with these faux flowers and anything else in the house she can get her darling little destructive paws on.
"No, I will not leave them alone, Mama! I can't resist them."
"Well, maybe just for a minute, because...
What is that thing you have in your hands?
And, why is it pointed at me? Oh, to take my picture?
Well, okay then, I'm going back to playing with MY flowers."
(Blogger, just so you know, I hate it when you mess up the spacing in my posts)!
He took this photo from a distance of about 700 feet or more: the tree was at the top of a ridge, he was at the bottom. I think it was an amazing capture! He calls it "a happy accident." (Please be sure to left click to enlarge it, the size here doesn't do the photo justice).
"He will kill mice and he will be kind to babies when he is in the house, just as long as they do not pull his tail too hard. But when he has done that, and between times, and when the moon gets up and night comes, he is the Cat that Walks by Himself, and all places are alike to him. Then he goes out to the Wet Wild Woods or up the Wet Wild Trees or on the Wet Wild Roofs, waving his wild tail and walking by his wild lone." Rudyard Kipling
Taken October 14, 2011. This is one of the things I love best about living in a forest; how the sunlight seeks out openings to trickle down through, picking and choosing which areas will be the stars...even if just for a few fleeting minutes.
These lovely clouds were floating about today, but not a drop of rain did they share. The setting sun painted them in spectacular colors as the birds sang their evening 'good-night' songs.
Though it doesn't feel all that much like autumn here yet, there are reminders that summer is making her departure, albeit very reluctantly. The birds of summer, the Grosbeaks, Rufus Sided Towhees, and Bullocks Orioles, have been gone for several weeks, leaving the forest to the birds that live here year round: Steller's Jays, Chickadees, Rosy Finches, Acorn and Gilded Flicker woodpeckers, Red Breasted and White Breasted Nuthatches, Juncos and Ravens. It's been a bit cooler, especially at night, and some of the leaves are starting to turn colors.
This has been the warmest summer we've ever experienced, and I'm not one bit sorry to see her leave. I just wish she'd hurry up!
It occurred to me today as I was watching yellow leaves being blown from the trees by the wind, that I also am in the Autumn of my life. Time is no longer my friend, no longer 'on my side' as Mick Jagger sang. I can't say I'm in middle age anymore...who lives to be 124? Who would want to? It would be horrible to outlive one's family and friends.
My dearest friend and neighbor has also made a change. No longer is she just down the lane and around the corner from me as she has been since 1978. A few months ago she retired and has now, at her son's insistence, moved to Oregon to be close to him. It makes sense. He is her only family and I know he is much easier in his mind having her close. After she called me today to let me know she and her animals had arrived at their new home safely I walked over to her house, as I have done countless times before. It felt very strange to look at her house and know she is no longer there. Of course, we'll talk often on the phone, but that's a poor substitute, at best, for having a dear friend actually being close by and IN your daily life. Still, it's better than nothing.
If growing up is a process of accumulating, growing old is a process of letting go...and, sometimes, that's really hard.
I found this charming painting on Pinterest and I couldn't resist sharing it. I don't know who the artist is; if you do, please let me know. This painting is so full of imagination and wonderful whimsey, I just love it.
This is Malcolm on the left (he's grown quite a bit since his last appearance on here) and that's his brother, Merlin, on the right. It's nearly impossible to get a photo of Merlin because as soon as he spots my camera he's gone. All I get are shots of the amazing invisible cat (if you have a cat, I bet you know what I mean). He was just waking up here; a split second later he was dashing up the stairs. But, this time I was fast enough...ha, ha, gotcha Merlin!
This isn't a current picture; I took it in November of 2010. I'm soooooo impatient for the autumn colors to arrive, but I'm afraid that this year they might not be so great. Two of the dogwood trees on my property have many leaves that are just turning brown and dropping off! I hope all the deciduous trees don't behave like these two trees. It's just been too darn hot up here, although today we did get a little rain. I'm crossing my fingers and hoping we get a lot more rain, we need it.
"No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace, as I have seen in one autumnal face." from Elegy IX by John Donne
Of course, it's not officially Autumn yet; I believe the first official day is the Autumn Equinox. But, it is starting to feel like Autumn. I suppose we'll have to suffer through a couple more heat waves here in the Southern California mountains. I can remember going back to school (back then school started the first week after Labor Day) and desperately wanting to wear my new school clothes. Beautiful plaid skirts in so many colors, gorgeous matching sweaters, luscious new boots...all called out their siren songs from my closet. I would usually succumb on the first day of school, as would many of my friends. But, after spending that one day wondering if we had somehow descended into the lower regions of Hades, we would quickly, albeit sadly, dress in our old, cooler clothing until the temperature became more accommodating.
This time of year always brings such nostalgia with it. I always, in September, feel the need to buy reams of new paper, boxes of new pencils, new notebooks; none of which I need, but still...
September also brings a longing for faces not seen in many years, for the music our laughter made. Sometimes, on a September evening when the wind is right, I can hear the faint echoes of that carefree laughter drifting by on the breeze.
And some other Wildings, big and little, who kindly share their forest with me:
Miss Sunni, a Grey Squirrel
"To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded." Ralph Waldo Emerson
A Mountain Lion
A Black Bear
A Young Steller's Jay
Common to high altitude forests all over the west
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Our task must be to free ourselves...by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty. ~~ Albert Einstein
June Is Adopt a Cat Month
But, there are always strays who need a loving home - so don't shop, ADOPT! Click the photo for helpful tips on adopting.
If they breathe, they live. If they live, they feel. If they feel, they love. If they love, they are aware. If they are aware, they have a soul. ~ Williams
I love cats because I enjoy my home and, little by little, they become its visible soul. Jean Cocteau
Courage, dear heart ~ C.S. Lewis
I think we are bound to, and by, Nature. We may want to deny this connection and try to believe we control the external world, but every time there's a snowstorm or drought we know our fate is tied to the world around us. ~~ Alice Hoffman
Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors and the most patient of teachers.
Charles W. Eliot
A person who collects or is fond of books. Also, a person who immediately feels safe, happy, even euphoric, when holding a favorite book.
Where there is tea there is hope - Pinero
Care for a cuppa?
Boulder Bay, Big Bear Lake
Click to visit Big Bear
Lake Gregory, Crestline
Click to visit Crestline
Click to visit Lake Arrowhead
Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. ~ John Muir, from "The California Mountains"
A Favorite Quote
"I don't want life to imitate art; I want life to BE art." Carrie Fisher
I live in a little cottage with my furry "children" in a beautiful mountain forest where we enjoy daily visits from the little wild creatures. I love animals (you probably guessed), books, photography, tall trees, clear lakes, rain, snow, tea, the moon, and creating all kinds of art.