summer gold

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Late spring early summer, I had been out in the yard gathering weeds and loose brush into a wheelbarrow. I being too lazy to walk up the road and dump it out into a wooded area it has since that day set overflowing under the burning summer sun, humidity, rain, and a lot of it. Shortly there after, it began to sprout an emerald green carpet of cultivated greenery, a thick stalk sprung out the center.  Today, a wealth of golden Sunflower blooms on that one stalk.

Apparently, the birds at our feeder have a noticeably greener thumb then I do!

Now moved to its new area in the yard until the fall. Nature sure can gift with a surprise at times leaving us with a smile!

Happy summer and be well!

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here in my space :: visual poetry

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Road trip to the Northeast Kingdom in Vermont

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We visited the National Fish & Wildlife refuge in Essex County Vermont over the weekend, and hiked along the Nulhegan River Trail. Over the rustic one-mile path we strolled up and down through black spruce woodland and trudged over lichen covered natural stone steps and shrubby peatland. Interspersed wooden bog bridges above clear flowing streams of cold water to refresh in. The over flowing river rushed on by as white caps sparkled under the hot summer sun. At the very end of the trail a steep slop covered in pine needles lead us on to a lovely small bog surrounded by wildflowers.

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Galumpki with a side of Pierogi please

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My favorite food in childhood was pasta. Pasta with marinara, pasta and butter, pasta sprinkled with Parmesan. Pasta pasta pasta, and more pasta, the shape or size did not matter Italian cuisine nourished this child’s taste buds.

My parents clearly expressed, “I hope you plan to marry an Italian guy,” and I did just that an Irish Italian man.

The favorite dish mother served was Galumpki, a cabbage leaf wrapped around a mix of salt pork, beef, and white rice, baked with a thin glaze of tomato sauce. It is a popular dish amongst Polish Americans. When there was Galumpki’s on the Sunday dinner table the accompanying side entree were Pierogies layered on a sea-green glass platter. The boiled semicircular dumplings stuffed with potato, cheese, and sometime sauerkraut with sprinkled fried onions a top.

These are my favorite meals today that comfort and remind me of family and childhood home, growing up in a household with five Polish half brothers and sisters.

What is your featured dish that brings you comfort from the good ole days of childhood?

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Paw prints left behind

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My boy Chachi, more than a friend who sat aside as loved ones passed on one by one, concerned with the sadness of the humans broken heart. Then there was the night I discovered a lump on my breast when I came out of the bathroom his small muscular body sat outside the bathroom door. He followed me into the studio where he sat next to my chair with a chilling stare of somber expression. Amazingly, his inherent inclination knew his momma was down with cancer. Alone, it was our secret throughout the weekend not telling a soul about the lump. I leaned down to pick him up and held him close to my chest cuddled him tight to let him know everything would be okay. He buried his warm snout into the hairline of my neck and licked away as canines do to heal their own wound. This was Chachis’ way of letting me know –– I see you, I hear you, I am here with you, you are not alone. Cleansing my heart and soul as he always had in my darkest moments he was my comfort.

A little anecdote I’ve always said,”Chachi, was the only man that ever really loved me unconditionally.”

Until, I would sing out to him, “Who loves the Chachie, mama mama!”

He could not run fast enough in opposite direction away from me. On days, I needed my space and he was a bit clingy I always knew how to claim my space back.

After my breast cancer gig he had stopped sleeping at the bottom of the bed and moved up to the top curled around my head. I would say, “Where’s that fat belly mama loves.” He would wildly roll over and I would rub his smooth as felt belly to sleep. When, my husband would approach me with a hug or kiss you would hear my little guys muffled warning of protective jealousy –– grrrrr.

A year ago on the morning of May 29th, my boy Chachi passed on to the Rainbow Bridge, snuggled between my belly and bended knees.

I do believe his spirit still lingers here at home, with serendipity in play this past Mother’s Day my husband was searching for a particular video of an old project he had worked on, when he inserted the film into the camera to view the project, whom do you suppose was filmed at the end of the video? You got it my boy Chachi!

Oh, how my heartaches for this little guy he was a blessed gift and brought so much love and joy into my world.


Chachi’s burial site in the backyard

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