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I am Sandra - faithful steward. listener. shepherd. dream believer. hard worker. collects brass bells, boots. Jesus follower. contented. star gazer. homemaker. farmer. prayer warrior. country woman. reader. traveler. writer. homebody. living life large.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Is Your Life Difficult?

 ~ carrots, egg, cup of coffee ~ 
It seems one day, a young woman went to her mother and told her how difficult her life was and how she, desperately, wanted to give up. The girl just didn't know how she was going to face today, much less tomorrow. The struggles and the fight were so great, she seemed so defenseless and new problems arose more quickly than old problems could be solved; or so it seemed. She was tired, exhausted in fact, and wanted to give up.
Her mother carefully listened then took her daughter into the kitchen. The mother filled three pots with water, put each pot over high heat and when the pots came to a boil, she placed in one carrots, in the second pot she placed an egg and in the last pot she placed ground coffee. For about fifteen minutes she let the pots boil, all the while listening to her daughter's tales of woe.
When she turned off the burners, she placed the carrots in a bowl, the egg in another bowl and the coffee in a third bowl. She looked at her daughter, "what do you see?" she asked.  The daughter looked askance at her mother and in a tight, small voice she replied, "carrots, egg and coffee."
Her mother asked her daughter to feel the carrots and when the daughter poked at the carrots, she said they were soft and mushy. Then, the daughter took the egg, tapped it on the counter and peeled the egg, noticing it had become hard boiled. The mother asked her daughter to sip the coffee and the daughter obliged her mother and said, "it's delicious but what does all this mean?"
The girl's mother explained how the carrots, the egg and the coffee grounds had all faced the same adversity: boiling water but each reacted differently. The raw carrots were hard and un-bendable without breaking but the boiling water softened them and they became weak. The fragile egg had been protected by its thick outer shell but the boiling water hardened the inside of the egg and made the shell fragile. The ground coffee reacted differently. After a while in the boiling water, it was the water that changed into a fragrant, aromatic beverage.
The mother looked at her daughter. "Are you a carrot, an egg or coffee grounds? When adversity knocks at your door, do you respond as the carrot? It seemed strong but, when faced with adversity, the carrot became soft and lost its strength. Are you the egg? The egg starts with a gentle inside, a malleable heart if you will, but with the boiling water, the egg became hard on the inside. Oh, it still looked much the same on the outside but on the inside it's hard and tough. The coffee grounds didn't change as much as they changed their surroundings. They became better, not bitter, in adversity and changed their surroundings."
How do you handle adversity? When times are difficult...and they will become if they haven't already... how do you respond? When your situation becomes overwhelming...and it will if it hasn't already... how will you respond? Where do you go, to whom do you turn when life is bleak and dark? I turn to Jesus but you knew that already, didn't you? -smile- If it weren't for Him, I'd have stayed in bed this morning. If you'd like to talk about Him, e-mail me and we'll talk; there's no better friend than Jesus.
Blessings ~ proverbs ~ adversity ~ better, not bitter ~ Jesus ~

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Sabbath Keeping

~ West Virginia hills ~
"I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth. He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber. Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. The LORD is thy keeper: the LORD is thy shade upon thy right hand. The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul. The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore." 

"Time is a cruel thief to rob us of our former selves. We lose as much to life as we do to death."
~ Elizabeth Forsythe Hailey, A Woman of Independent Means ~

"Old Time, in whose banks we deposit our notes
Is a miser who always wants guineas for groats;
He keeps all his customers still in arrears
By lending them minutes and charging them years."
~ Oliver Wendell Holmes ~

"Time is the coin of your life.  It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent.  Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you."  ~ Carl Sandburg ~

"Time is a great teacher, 
but unfortunately it kills all its pupils."  

"Clocks slay time... time is dead as long as it is being clicked off by little wheels; only when the clock stops does time come to life."  ~ William Faulkner ~

"As if you could kill time without injuring eternity."
~ Henry David Thoreau, "Economy," Walden, 1854 ~

"You must have been warned against letting the golden hours slip by; but some of them are golden only because we let them slip by."  ~ James Matthew Barrie ~

"The great French Marshall Lyautey once asked his gardener to plant a tree. The gardener objected that the tree was slow growing and would not reach maturity for 100 years. The Marshall replied, "In that case, there is no time to lose; plant it this afternoon!" 
~ John F. Kennedy ~

"Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, 
and your government when it deserves it."
 
"As the hand is made for holding and the eye for seeing, thou hast fashioned me for joy. Share with me the vision that shall find it everywhere: in the wild violet's beauty; in the lark's melody; in the face of a steadfast man; in a child's smile; in a mother's love; in the purity of Jesus." ~ Gaelic Prayer ~

"When people go through something rough in life, they say, "I'm taking it one day at a time." Yes, so is everybody. Because that's how time works." ~ Hannibal Buress ~

"Sometimes you count the days, other times you weigh them." 
~ unknown ~

"...but your time is always ready." 

If you'd like your name added to the prayer list, please let me know.

Prayer Keeping ~ Noelle ~ Geoffrey ~ Terry ~ Angela, Penny and family ~ Daniel ~ Morgan ~ Meredith ~ Susan ~ Stephanie ~ Winnie ~ Wanda ~ Steve ~ Leslie ~ William and Catherine Becky ~ Rick ~ Misha ~ J ~  Linda and Skip ~ Ryan ~ Roy ~ Tonya ~ Dave ~ me ~

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Everything I Need To Know...

~ the road before ~

It's a rainy, drizzly, overcast day here on the farm; perfect for napping! Dave had to go to town; it's quiet, peaceful and I'm thinking about taking a nap. Before I do, please continue reading. I don't know who wrote the following but it's applicable for today...and since it's always today and never yesterday or tomorrow, y'all print it off and put it where you can be reminded, daily: You are Loved with an Everlasting Love.

People, it just doesn't get any better, not on this side of the veil!

...I learned from Noah's Ark ~

1: Don't miss the boat.

2: Remember that we are all in the same boat.

3: Plan ahead. 
It wasn't raining when Noah built the Ark.

4: Stay fit. 
As you age, you can still do something really big, 
including telling the good news to all who will hear.

5: Don't listen to critics; 
just get on with the job that needs to be done.

6: Build your future on high ground.

7: For safety's sake, travel in pairs.

8: Speed isn't always an advantage. 
The snails were on board with the cheetahs.

9: When you're stressed, float awhile.

10: Remember, the Ark was built by amateurs; 
the Titanic by professionals.

11: No matter the storm, when you are with God, 
there's always a rainbow waiting.

Blessings ~ rain ~ quiet ~ rainbows ~ everlasting love ~

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Sabbath Keeping

"In thy presence is fullness of joy." 
~ Psalms 16:11 ~

 "Heaven, the everlasting treasury of joy." ~ Shakespeare ~ 
There is nothing I can give to you which you do not already have.
But there is much, very much more, that while I cannot give, you can take...
But there is much, very much more, that while I cannot give, you can take...
No Heaven can come to us unless our hearts find rest in today -- Take Heaven.
No Peace lies in the future which is not hidden in this present little instant -- 
Take Peace.
The gloom of the world is but a shadow. Behind it, yet within our reach is Joy -- Take Joy.
There is radiance and glory in the darkness, could we but see, and to see, we have only to look -- I beseech you to look.
Life is so generously given, but we,
judging its gifts by their covering,
cast them away as ugly or heavy or hard.
Remove the covering and you will find beneath it a living splendor, 
woven of love by wisdom with power.
Welcome it, grasp it and you touch the angel's hand that brings it to you.
Everything we call a trial, a sorrow, or a duty, the Angel's hand is there.
The gift is there.
And the wonder of an overshadowing Presence -- our joys too -- be not content with them as joys -- They too conceal more divine gifts.
Life is so full of meaning and purpose, so full of beauty -- beneath its covering -- that will find earth but cloaks your Heaven.
Courage then to claim it, that is all --
But the courage you have; and the knowledge that we are pilgrims together -- wending through unknown country home.

"Joy is not the absence of suffering. It is the presence of God." ~ Robert Schuller ~


 "And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, 
and Jesus Christ whom you have sent."
~ John 17:3 ~

If you'd like your name added to the prayer list, please let me know.

Prayer Keeping ~ Geoffrey ~ Terry ~ Angela, Penny and family ~ Daniel ~ Morgan ~ Meredith ~ Susan ~ Stephanie ~ Winnie ~ Wanda ~ Steve ~ Leslie ~ William and Catherine Becky ~ Rick ~ Misha ~ J ~  Linda and Skip ~ Ryan ~ Roy ~ Tonya ~ Dave ~ me ~

Friday, September 16, 2011

Sammy and Steve: Banjo Pickers

 ~ Shadow, Leslie, Sandra ~
POST SCRIPT - scheduling change - Sammy and Steve will now appear on the 11 November 2011 Letterman show. 

Leslie Shelor has been a friend for many years, perhaps more than a decade, but I'm not sure because my memory is faulty. We've known each other through ups and downs, good times and bad and even the two hour drive between us hasn't dampened our friendship. Leslie is one of those people you feel like you've known for years and while she's physically beautiful, she's also as plain as an old shoe. That's one of those "Southernisms" that mean, you go to Leslie's house and you go home. In all the years I've known Leslie, it's only been in the past few years I realized her brother, Sammy, was Sammy Shelor. As in The Sammy Shelor which Leslie finds totally amusing. For lo these many decades, she's always been Sammy's big sister, Leslie, and never has it been Leslie's little brother, Sammy.

Oh well, trust me to get it backwards! 
-LOL-
Sorry, Sammy!
~ Sammy Shelor, 
photo borrowed from MySpace ~
If y'all know anything about bluegrass music...and by anything, I mean more than I know...you know Sammy Shelor is the undisputed Banjo Pickers King. From 1995 to 1998 he won the International Bluegrass Music Association's -IBMA- Banjo Picker of the Year award...people, that's four straight years! The Lonesome River Band celebrates their 30th anniversary this month and this year, 2011, the Lonesome River Band has five IBMA nominations.

Additionally, this year, Sammy has been nominated IBMA Banjo Performer of the year and...and...now I feel like one of those infomercials -grin-...that's not all...Sammy won the Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo and Bluegrass award! How cool is that, I ask?! Yeah, *that* Steve Martin is a killer banjo player in his own right, indecently talented in wide venues and a right nice guy to boot. As is Sammy. I've met him a few times, when I've been visiting Leslie, but I never have much to say other than "hi". Stellar, eh? -LOL- I'm not one for gushing and the only thing I can play is the radio so Sammy and I don't have a lot in common. His wife, Sue, is almost as quiet but we do have tourism in common so it's easier to talk with her. The NY Times Artsbeat had a nice article so please read.

More good news...Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers are up for five IBMA nominations of their own. 

Read Lonesome River Band news for more information and watch Sammy and the Lonesome River Band when they play with Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers on the David Letterman Show on November 3!

Leslie, I bet you're pretty proud of ole Sammy! We all are, Leslie, we all are.


Blessings ~ Leslie ~ Sammy ~ Sue ~ Steve Martin ~ bluegrass music ~ banjo pickers ~

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Happy Birthday, Daddy!

~ Jim and his twin lambs~
Daddy is 83 years young today and as full of vim and vigor as ever! The photo above, tells a story of Appalachia in miniature. Daddy was seven years old and the baby boy of thirteen children. He's kneeling in front of a wood rack, the staple of any Appalachian home with only fireplaces for heat, and holding his pet twin black lambs. Black lambs were a rarity because they were, usually, killed at birth and their pelts given to Miss Viole, a neighbor who would make "mouton fur" coats for her rich clients in New York City.

Daddy, being the youngest boy, was allowed to keep these black lambs as pets. Aunt Esther told me Uncle Clarence, her husband and Daddy's oldest brother, took this photo. She said she remembered well that day because Uncle Clarence took her to his home to introduce her to his beloved baby brother. She said Daddy was oh so proud of his lambs and, if they weren't following him around, Daddy was following them around.

Daddy served in the Army, met Mom while he was stationed at Fort Eustis and has been a Bible believing Christian for as long as I can remember. Every year, for more than 40 years, he's read the Bible through each and every year! One of my fondest memories is seeing Daddy and Mom reading their Bibles every morning and starting their day with just a little talk with Jesus.
~ Daddy and one of his honey bees ~
Uncle Clarence started Daddy bee keeping when Daddy was twelve and found a swarm of bees on the mountain side. He told his big brother and when Uncle Clarence got off work, they both went to collect the bee swarm. Uncle Clarence gave Daddy a hive to put the bees in and said, "okay, now you're a bee keeper!" I've never known Daddy to wear any sort of bee keeper equipment; he's always so calm and patient around his bees and they never sting him, at least, not on purpose. He's been stung when he's accidentally squashed a bee but that's all in self defense; the bees never willing sting Dad.

When we were children, each year Daddy would get two weeks vacation from the power company so he and Mom would pile us in the truck camper and we'd see the USA...yep in our Chevrolet...truck. One memorable trip we made it to Wall Drug Store, Mt. Rushmore, Badlands, Yellowstone and Old Faithful and a bunch of other places in those two weeks! It was on that trip Daddy and I took a helicopter ride over Mt. Rushmore and I can still remember the whoosh feeling of weightlessness when the 'copter took off. Instinctively, I grabbed for Daddy's arm and he laughed like a loon; he was loving it too! Daddy and Mom instilled in me a love for travel as well as a love for Jesus.
 ~ Daddy and one of his bee hives ~

Happy Birthday  
Daddy!
God willing, you'll make it to 100 and achieve your goal of one century. You've been a blessing to all who have known you; many call you friend, one calls you husband but only three call you Daddy. We are all most blessed!

Blessings ~ Daddy ~ Mom ~ Steve ~ Stephanie ~ God centered family ~ me ~

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A Place Of Safety

~ Carly and Sam ~
Sam P. Spade, Secret Agent, is the bravest thing on four legs; especially when his four legs are in a place of safety under my skirt! Sam is smart; he realizes he's not as big as Carly Shetland and, always, seeks refuge under my skirt when Carly comes to either investigate or receive her treat of corn. 
 ~Jake B. Goode, ~
our most recent foundling dumped dog visitor has found a new home. Dave and I hated to let him go but it was for the best. Just last night, prior to his new human retrieving him, Daniel told us Jake had dug out under the fence, was traveling around at night, then returning in the morning. Jake was always here around 7 but almost never at 6, when I'd arise to let the other dogs out. Now I know why.

How goes it with your blog? Are you happy with it? Generally, I'm happy with mine although there are some tweaks I'd like to do...when God makes a 36 hour day...snort, chuckle, LOL...until then, I just wander around Blogland and find folks who are willing to help like Funky Junk Interiors. Check out her link and tell me if that's not fabulous, eh?  I wish I could tell her how much help she's been but, for some reason ??? I can, hardly ever, comment on her type comment blocks. The one where you have to "Comment as" then "select profile" well, that almost never pops up, anymore, as Thistle Cove Farm and when I try to do other types responses, it always fails. So, if you have this type comment block, please know I have tried to comment but to no success. Glenda, you come to mind here as well. And, if you're able to comment at Funky Junk, please let her know I am grateful for her post.
~ Ms. Daniel, center, speaking to former students ~
Back Yard Neighbor has a fabulous post regarding 9.11.2001. You may recall, President Bush was in Sandra Kay Daniels' classroom at Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Florida where second grader's read The Pet Goat to the President. In Back Yard Neighbor Jeanne's blog entry, those same second grader's, now ten years older, recount their memories of that historic event. President Bush was later criticized because he chose to honor his commitment to those second graders and stay with them while they finished reading to him. I agree with Chantal Guerrero who said, "I think if he would have panicked that was the tone he was setting for the whole country. If he wanted the country to stay calm, he needed to show that he was calm." Thank you, former President Bush. 

Compared to our current President, all I can say is:
I am sorely disillusioned with our current President; so disillusioned, in fact, I cannot say anything that isn't nice so I'll just not say anything at all. Perhaps, though, for the first time ever in my life I don't regret not having children.
~ my place of safety ~
Where is your place of safety? Where do you go when the cold storms blow? When you need comfort, sanctuary, warmth, coziness, love; where is it you go and what do you find there? Autumn is the time of year that I take down our billowy curtains and hang our heavy velvet drapes. It's time to prepare the house and ourselves for the November rains and cold winds and the deep sleep of winter that follows. Cotton blankets are exchanged for wool blankets, cotton sheets for flannel and, in guest bedrooms, electric blankets are put on beds. Summer clothing is put away and cozy sweaters and wool socks placed in easy reach. Every sofa, and a lot of chairs, have shawls or throws draped on them and baskets of knitting, embroidery and the quilting rack are readied. The tea kettle is always on the counter but heavier teas such as Lapsang Souchong are placed by the kettle and the oil and propane tanks are filled in readiness. My place of safety is being prepared; what are the top three things you're doing to prepare?

Blessings ~ full oil and propane tanks ~ tea ~ wool blankets ~ heavy drapes ~ a place of safety ~

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Sabbath Keeping


9/11

WE WILL NEVER FORGET
Blessings ~ First Responders ~ Police ~ EMT's ~ Military ~ Fire ~ Each Other ~

If you'd like your name added to the prayer list, please let me know.

Prayer Keeping ~ Brenda ~ Daniel ~ Wanda ~ Morgan ~ Susan ~ Stephanie ~ Winnie ~Steve ~ Angela ~ Leslie ~ William and Catherine Becky ~ Rick ~ Misha ~ J ~  Linda and Skip ~ Ryan ~ Roy ~ Tonya ~ Dave ~ me ~

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Summer's Last Gasp

 ~ the Cove ~
Although there are sure to be hot days ahead, they will be minimal. The nights are a lot cooler, the mornings are a lot foggier and the dew is a lot heavier. All, signifying the ending of Summer and the beginning of Autumn. There are those who say the seasons shouldn't be capitalized but I disagree and think each has its rightful place and should be recognized. Those who live on a farm, live by the seasons with each having lovely, yet bittersweet, days.
~ cheerful zinnia ~
We've cut all the hay we're going to cut this year and have more than fifty round bales to feed as winter progresses. Usually, we put up square hay but this year was different. People's time wasn't their own this year, and much like last year, we all made do with what life brought our way. We are blessed though, we were able to get our hay cut and baled, perhaps having enough to sell in the spring. 
~ sturdy, beautiful barn ~
This is our sturdy, beautiful loft over the stable. We're fortunate to have several buildings, each with their own design and purpose and, yes, even beauty. This old barn has been standing a hundred years or more; no one is quite sure but the evidence is in the limestone foundation. This year, for the first in decades, perhaps ever, the barn loft was cleaned. The square bales moved to the back and side, clearing up one side and the middle and showing the floor underneath.
~ Morgan and Shawn ~
Shawn, with Morgan's help, moved all the hay to the back of the barn, clearing the floor and making room for future bales. It's strange though, when I walk on the loft floor, there are creaks and moans I've never heard because the deep bed of hay on the floor covered the noise. I find myself tiptoeing with a frisson of unease but the barn is sturdy, beyond sturdy, and holds tons of weight.
 
Recently, ain't for city gals posted she felt a bit of apathy and I responded I understood completely. However, after reflection, it's not apathy I feel but ennui and it happens this time every year. It's not related to the shortening of days, although that certainly assists, but, rather, knowing the rest that is winter that's coming is much needed yet also knowing there's so much to be done before winter sets in. Ennui is a feeling of weariness or dissatisfaction or a feeling of listlessness and general dissatisfaction resulting from lack of activity or excitement.

Hmmm, that's close although there's no lack of activity or excitement here on the farm. Just last night Dave and I visited while sitting on the back porch and watched a cow look for a place to calve. Now, to a lot of people that, perhaps, sounds as exciting as dish water but life, to me, is precious even when it's a cow and her calf.
~ Jake B. Goode ~
For the past few weeks we've been visited by a stray dumped Border Collie whom we've named Jake. He's not though, he's not good, because he keeps digging under the fence and has found several loose areas to allow him to come and go at his will. Not good, Jake, not good at all! Around here we have sheep both on our farm and on our neighbor's farms and our neighbors don't like stray dogs. Stray dogs tend to get hungry or bored...or both...and then the troubles begin. Jake has been given a reprieve of several weeks and we've let it be known we're feeding and trying to contain him but his time is short. As much as he's welcome here, he's not welcome to teach our dogs bad habits. Our yard fence is doubled and now, tripled, in safety but Jake has all night to dig and dig he does. I'm afraid it's only a matter of time before he finds yet another escape spot and I dare not trust our dogs, loose, in the yard with Jake.
~ Canada geese ~
Each day more Canada geese arrive, on their way from somewhere else to someplace else. It seems all of life is seeking home this time of year. Seeking the warmth, safety and security of hunkering down for winter where food and water will, hopefully, be plentiful until it's time to move on. The geese voices make all of us, humans and dogs, look to the sky, breath caught in our throats, wondering at the mystery. 

Like I said, ennui isn't quite it but, perhaps, pensive is more on target although meditative even more so. Pensive "suggests dreaminess of wistfulness, and may involve little or no thought to any purpose: a pensive, faraway look. Meditative involves thinking of certain facts or phenomena, perhaps in the religious sense of "contemplation," without necessarily having a goal of complete understanding or of action: meditative but unjudicial. Reflective has a strong implication of orderly, perhaps analytic, process of thought, usually with a definite goal of understanding: a careful and reflective critic."  

Which is it; do you know?
Blessings ~ Summer ~ Autumn ~ hay in the loft ~ hay in the storage lot ~ home ~ quiet evenings on the porch ~  Canada geese ~

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Two Things

~ Daniel and Sam P. Spade, Secret Agent ~

So many are in need of prayer...folks in Texas who have lost their homes, those who are in harm's way because of fire; Mary, my friend, and her family are going through severe testing; those folks on Sabbath Keeping's prayer list and Daniel and his family. Daniel's Mother was buried Saturday and her family needs prayer, please.

This summer, Philips and the renowned director/producer Ridley Scott launched a global filmmaker competition dubbed "Tell It Your Way".  The entrants were given freedom of expression with two strict rules: there had to be only six lines of dialogue and the film could run three minutes or less.

Please watch the grand prize winner, Porcelain Unicorn.

Did it lift your heart? Mine is soaring!

Blessings ~ true hope ~ Daniel's family ~ Mary's family ~ the power of prayer ~ God, who hears and answers our prayers ~

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Sabbath Keeping

~ full moon rising ~
"He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth."
~ Isaiah 53:7 ~

"Help us each other's joys and griefs to share, 
But let us turn to Thee alone in weakness."
~ Anonymous ~
"Go, bury thy sorrow,
The world hath its share
Go, bury it deeply,
Go, hide it with care
Go, buy thy sorrow,
Let others be blest
Go, give them the sunshine,
And tell God the rest."
~ Anonymous ~
"Give us grace and strength to forbear and to persevere...Give us courage and gaiety and the quiet mind, spare to us our friends, soften to us our enemies." ~ Robert Louis Stevenson ~

"Strive to realize a state of inward happiness, 
independent of circumstances."
~ J. P. Greaves ~

"Mine are the heavens and mine is the earth. Mine are the nations, the just are mine and mine the sinners. The angels are mine and the Mother of God and all things are mine; and God himself is mine and all for me, because Christ is mine and all for me. What do you ask then and seek, my soul?"
~ St. John of the Cross ~

"I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength." ~ Philippians 4:12-13 ~


If you'd like your name added to the prayer list, please let me know.

Prayer Keeping ~ Angela, Penny and family ~Wanda ~ Daniel ~ Wanda ~ Morgan ~ Susan ~ Stephanie ~ Winnie ~Steve ~ Angela ~ Leslie ~ William and Catherine Becky ~ Rick ~ Misha ~ J ~  Linda and Skip ~ Ryan ~ Roy ~ Tonya ~ Dave ~ me ~

Saturday, September 03, 2011

Ukraine

  ~  Ukraine border ~
We crossed the Tisza River on the Friendship Bridge and I took this quick photo but unbeknowest to the border guards. In every country, border guards frown upon photos at the border and my traveling companions were uneasy with me doing this but I was sneaky quick. Er, maybe that is sneaky quick.
~ going to the hayfield ~
All over Eastern Europe hay harvest is still done by hand and the entire family pitches in to help.
~ Ukraine village ~
Romania is beautiful but Ukraine seemed even more beautiful; at least, to my eye. It seemed lighter and cleaner even though the roads were dreadful. I'm used to mountain roads but my traveling companions are not and they were appalled at road conditions. We would travel for miles on what I call washbasin roads...gravel, dust and bumpity bumpity meaning the vehicle had to slow down to twenty miles, or less, per hour.
~ logging trucks, dirt roads...just like home ~
~ potatoes need milk...right? ~
Cows wandered freely and drivers had to watch out, constantly, so someone's livelihood wasn't injured or killed. It made the drive so much more interesting!
~ chewing cud ~
Cows, sheep, goats and other animals have four compartments to their stomachs and are able to chew their cud or ruminate.  These two bossies reminded me of females the world over who gather to "chew their cud" and catch up on "news", otherwise known as gossip...smile.
The first town we stayed at in Ukraine was Kocib and while there, visited the large market. Flea markets are the same all over the world...you can buy any and everything if you know where to look and who to ask and is why we stayed in Kocib and not Kolomiya, which we only visited. Most of the people on this trip are of Slovakian or Czech heritage and are "Kroj Chasers"...my term...and most of this trip was spent searching out local, vintage dress now called costumes. Most of the time it was funny but other times it was just downright exasperating watching some run to and fro, absolutely terrified someone would get something and best them...it was absolutely insane!... in my humble opinion.
~ in the market ~
Did you think I could leave out the sweet faces? -smile-
~ embroidered linen shirt ~
This gentleman has on an example of kroj. His linen shirt is handmade and hand embroidered and he said he had about four more at home that are similar. He doesn't know just how close he came to being stripped naked and handed a few coins for his shirt...close call, Sir, and you, perhaps, don't even know.
In Kolomiya we visited the Pysanka Museum, aka Easter Egg Museum, as well as an ethnographic museum. I also spent some pleasurable time sitting at a cafe, drinking Staropramen and people watching. A litre of beer, quality draft Staropramen, cost 9 Hryvnia which was about $1.25...bliss! Ahhhh...if only Dave had been with me; Staropramen is our favorite beer.
~ Pysanka Museum ~
~ bride and groom ~
During the course of one afternoon, I saw half dozen, perhaps more, weddings. The wedding party would parade through the streets going from there to somewhere else, presumably to party. 
~ ooh la la! ~
There's more, much more, but this will have to do for now. It's past time for me to do chores and I'm burning daylight. I'll leave you with one more photo and with the promise, should you wish me to, to continue the travelogue next week.
~ market day fini ~
Blessings ~ people, we're all God's children ~ weddings ~ Pysanka Museum ~ markets ~ korj ~ Staropramen ~ cattle ~ mountain roads ~ Friendship Bridge ~