Wednesday, September 21, 2016


Above photo: Dr Hargrave resided in Michigan during the 1900s and attended to many of his patients by riding many miles in his horse and buggy to their homes. 

Well I'm not exactly using a horse and buggy like Dr, Hargrave. No, I am still driving  my 2004 Toyota Tacoma that will carry me to California for quite a few months and then who knows what my next adventure will be after that.

I will not be on my blog during this trip. I will stop in to read your good writings and view your photos. 

Leaving in a week -- this is a big trip for this elder (and elder dog Daisy) -- should be interesting! 

First stop -- Mountains of Northern California!

Tuesday, August 30, 2016


Wildness has a mind of its own. It is barbarous and crazy in the eyes of most folks -- they feel that it should be admired for its conformity not wildness. Lawns, landscapes, and mono-cultures are typical examples of this conformity. 

When I was young, a very long time ago, I used to play in fields and woods mostly for what I could discover. Almost everyday I journeyed into that canvas and discovered something new -- usually in the plant and insect world. These places rooted me into the natural world. I would sit on logs and observe the natural interactions of the wind, rain clouds and overall movement of the woods and fields.

Part of my collection

I set up collections of nature's miscellaneous remnants as did my good friend Billy who lived near me. We had no idea who owned the fields and woods -- we felt we did. 

Dew drops after a rain.

Today, many, many years beyond my early experiences I still have my roots planted there. And also in other places where I have lived since. Finding wildness has become more difficult. It's parameters seem to be shrinking fast. 

Wild asters from a field

Here is a passage from a recent book I read, The Abstract Wild by Jack Turner:

"Thoreau's famous saying "in Wildness is the preservation of the World" asserts that wildness preserves, not that we must preserve wildness. For Thoreau, wildness was a given . . . (his) personal effort . . . was a project of the self."

Wednesday, August 24, 2016


My dog Daisy at the park 

"Now since I am a dog and a pretty darn good one I better help the Parks and Rec. Dept. by watching for dogs off leash. The green metal sign says all dogs must be on a leash beyond this sign."

"I'm thinking this place must get lots of dogs as the Parks and Rec Dept had to post this official sign in this park. Right now there are no other dogs in this huge park except me."

"Well, I think I will take a snooze as no dogs seem to be using the park today. I know it is terribly hot and humid so maybe that is why no dogs have shown up. Or maybe their human handlers are just too hot to enjoy the park and don't want to leash up their pets. I don't blame them. As they say this weather is not fit for man or beast (like me)."

Stay Cool -- from your friendly beast -- Daisy

Saturday, July 30, 2016


Old Farm Silo
circa early 1900s

The only farm structure left on this farmstead -- it 
stands as an icon to its past glory. 

Sunday, July 24, 2016


Recently I roamed around a small town populated with about 4000 residents. I was looking for some representative homes that were mostly small in size, early 1900s, colorful, and had various plants around their front yard. I found these four homes that were fairly close to what I was looking for. I call them granny houses as they reminded me of  the graphic storybook homes that were featured in the books I used to read to my children when they were young.

This small town has not been touched by a lot of of development -- thankfully. The town's commercial strip is made up of older buildings -- many one storied -- and all of different design and materials.

Most of the houses in the town are individualistic from each other with lots of rural character. Some need a little TLC but most are kept up very nicely. 

Weeds don't have a bad reputation in this town. They live together with many different types of plants. Overall I felt like I was viewing a storybook town. One that appreciates its housing history. 

Sunday, July 17, 2016


New Age Naturalist

"It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see."
Henry David Thoreau

Monday, July 11, 2016

Former neighbors with my dog Daisy

Personal thoughts.

I believe.

In contrast to the world news -- I have begun to think about what most of the world's folk must be like -- excluding those that bomb, shoot or do other unspeakable harm to others. I feel that we as everyday common folk go about our life in a friendly and pleasurable manner. 

I believe the news media and our political bodies are one large machine that perpetuates scare tactics. This machine attempts to influence our way of life. Their negative remarks trickle down and influence some who are living a good life. 

I believe we all have ways of coping with the waves of violence that we know is going on around the world. One of mine is to limit news programs to a tiny minimum. Otherwise, smile, hug, dance, and sing. Life is good for most folk. 

I believe the world of good folks can undue the influence of the news and political bodies' negative pronouncements. Just turn it off. 

Christmas 1914 World War One

Tuesday, July 5, 2016


Front facade of Denise's home with her climbing roses flowing over her natural picket fence.

REPOST FROM -- 6/15/14

Small towns offer so much texture to our regional landscapes. Textures in the form of flowers, trees, architecture, personal landscape touches, fencing, small home veggie gardens plus other unique configurations. All containing the personal touches of the town folk.

Yesterday, I was out and about with my son -- visiting a small town that had a nice little bike shop. My son is a biker and needed some special repairs to his bike. He gets great exercise riding his bike to work in Portland every day -- twenty miles there and back. 

But getting back to the small town. I, personally, was looking at the houses of the town -- the unique representations of its housing stock.  Down a small residential street I found one that I was smitten with. I call the home -- Denise's place. 

 Denise's raised garden beds with her garage in the background.

Denise was out front in her yard when I happened upon this cozy wood framed house. I didn't see her at first but as I stepped out of my car she waved me over to her yard. It was a friendly meeting of two senior ladies --  her and I -- and I felt her warmth from the start. 

She talked about her house with affection explaining she moved there ten years ago. She also explained that the house had only 600 plus square feet inside. I thought to myself how wonderful. Less to take care of when one is retired. She also explained that her house is over hundred years old. Wonderful, built when houses were built with solid materials -- not thin plywood like some today that suffer damage in strong winds.  

All the time we talked Denise's large beautiful calico cat sat on the railing listening and watching us. I just had to a photograph Ms Calico as she seemed so regal on the porch railing. 

Denise has added many small touches that make a home personal. Like the old wagon and trike that sit with flowers under a small tree near her front roadway. Also she has a clump of four very large conifers sitting on the corner of her property that are notations of the its natural history. 

My lasting impression of Denise is that she
 has made a home that fits her like a glove