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It has been a long while since I wrote a Friday Fictioneers challenge. This week’s photo, courtesy of The Reclining Gentleman, woke me up.

In case you are not aware, A photo prompt is posted each week and the challenge is to tell a story in 100 words or less.

FF 2016-02-12

You were only seven when your classmates sent the pot of blooming daffodils.

Bright, bobbing blooms to grace that hospital room. Mrs. Goodson told me how your friends at school brought in quarters so she could buy them.

We planted them by the maple tree in the yard. Do you remember?

Over the years those flowers flourished, enchanting every spring.

Later on, your youngest son helped you dig some up to plant at your home far away.

Then you went away, forever. They did not bloom again.

I wonder, do they bloom for you in heaven?

Other interesting 100 word +/- tales can be found

Invisible people

When I was a kid, I often wished to have the power of invisibility.  To be somewhere, but no one else would know. Then as the coke bottle glasses, plain looking, hand me down wearing, very short person in High School, I discovered I had it.

The person the boys asked for advice about other girls, the one who was always last when teams were picked. Yes, that one. If help was needed for homework, I was noticed and a lot of my efforts copied.

I thought after I grew up and married, busy raising children that maybe I was more visible, and for a time I was.  I was ‘Mom’ or Mrs. S to a large number of kids, teachers and school parents, Girl Scout leaders, church people…

Yesterday, I discovered I am, again, invisible! Live-in Grandson asked the general question, “What did you all do today?” when he got home from work.

Hubby regaled him with a tale of his hunting trip, and various other things he had done. Then Hubby  said, “Gramma didn’t do anything but play on her computer all day.”

And you know what, that really hurt my feelings! Maybe I did not do anything ‘great’, but the bed was made, food fixed, laundry done, floors swept and mopped, the chickens and dogs cared for, and worked with the new pup’s training, more food fixed and dishes done up. Every day things that make our small world function.

Apparently, Invisibility is my Super Power. Who knew? And I am not alone.

Consider this, how many ‘invisible people ‘ do you know? Those who do things we take for granted… Parents? Co-workers? Nurses and other workers at nursing homes and hospitals? The person who stocks the shelves at the store? The one who cuts your hair? The fast food crew that made your lunch? The customer service rep you talked with on the phone? There are so many! If they fall down on the job, then their presence will be noted, and probably missed.


It’s not what it seems

While I think of people east of Sunrise Ridge, contending with winter storm Jonas, freezing rain and blizzard weather, my problem seems so small.

Beware that blue sky today! It is playing a trick.

After several days of snow flying, falling and dancing in the air, looming gray sky, shrouded with clouds this sunny day looks so good!

Wishing to be ‘outside’ enjoying the bright, sparkling air, oh yes! The sunshine hides a bitter wind, and chills colder than the grey!

When I went to break ice and give the chickens fresh water, they crowded in like camels at an oasis, emptying the pan in minutes and clucking for a refill.

The smaller birds flock in to the feeder, puffed up, feathers ruffled, trapping air for insulation.

No, it’s not quite what it seems, but the days are getting longer, and slowly things will turn.


A new year has begun.

I thought would share a couple of photos that I particularly enjoyed from 2015.



taste testing


It has been a few gloomy days here on Sunrise Ridge, fog, rain, more fog and more rain.

This morning the sun peeped out for a few minutes, then heavy clouds returned.

All that, and the appearance of one majestic pileated woodpecker, laughing loudly as he flew by. In a rare mood, this bird sat long enough to allow me to take his portrait.

His visit and a bit of sunshine, did a lot to sweeten the day

It’s good to know

 A friend of mine is in the hospital.

This morning, her husband posted on her Facebook wall that he was trying to do laundry in the wringer washer. 

Having had some experience with that, I offered some advice.

The following is an excerpt of the conversation:  S0rt the clothes, fill the washer with water, add detergent, start dasher for a couple of minutes. Add the clothes, start dasher, let it run about 10 minutes for regular laundry, 20if it is really dirty. Run through wringer into rinse tub. Start a new load while you stir and wring the clothes from the tub. Hang the clothes on the line,.


Elizabeth :Thank you Mary Shipman now why is the buttons hanging up is there a trick

Mary Shipman when you get ready to wring fold the buttons and zippers to the inside of the clothes

Elizabeth Lol thanks

Mary Shipman It’s not that hard, just a learning process. You will do fine

Elizabeth Chase When she is down doing it looks soooo easy lol and fun me well this thing might end up eating g my fingers wringing me out haha oh it really make me appreciate all she does

Mary Shipman Use the handle of a wooden spoon if you are afraid of getting your fingers eaten. That is how I taught my kids. wink emoticon

A friend of mine, Verna Moss, posted a picture of a pin cushion on Facebook. I made a comment about it and was treated to this wonderful story. I asked permission to share it, and graciously, my friend has allowed me to share the picture and the lovely tale.

verna's grandmother

My grandma, Hannah Burton-Hall-Warren, my dad’s mother, made this pin cushion when she was 90 years old and totally blind. You can tell by the long, running stitches that she had to do this by feel and what she could “see” in her mind. She made many projects such as stuffed dolls, aprons, and pin cushions without assistance other than she would have us to match up fabric, lace, and thread, etc. We would put a safety pin on the “right” side of the fabric so it wouldn’t be wrong side up.
Grandma was born with limited vision – she could read by holding a book up close or using a magnifying glass. She had a cornea transplant in her 60’s but it failed and she was then totally blind for the remainder of her life. Because of her poor vision, they didn’t send her to school; but, she outsmarted them by teaching herself how to get by in life. For the most part, she raised 3 children by herself – her husband, Marian Burton, had TB and died at an early age. Grandma took in laundry; ironed clothes; raised big gardens and canned; she raised, butchered and sold chickens and eggs. . She did whatever she could to feed and clothe her family – she didn’t live on welfare or handouts – she worked hard to survive. Grandma was very independent and came up with many creative techniques for everyday life. To prevent overfilling a cup, she would put her thumb inside the rim to judge how full the cup was; when writing letters or shopping lists, she would put a rubber band around a stenographer notebook to determine where to place the ink pen and then roll the rubber band down the paper to prevent writing on top of each line. She would have us sort her money out and then she would fold each bill a different way according to its denomination – she always knew exactly how much money she had. To sweep, she would sit in the floor with an old rag and a dust pan and “sweep” the dirt into the dust pan. She died at the age of 97. She never considered herself old, in her late 80’s, she would still say, “When I get old …” She was quite a lady!! I wish her great-great grandkids would have had an opportunity to know her; she was a master at storytelling and loved nothing more than spending time with children. After my mother died in 1955, both of my grandmothers, Grandma Hall and Grandma Angel, helped Daddy to care for us. Grandma Hall came to the “old store” and helped Daddy care for us and the store until he remarried in 1956.

Grandparents are such a treasure!

After dinner last night, great grandson, Parker, age 3, treated me to a space voyage.
Our seat was in my big armchair, snuggled together, as he piloted our space rocket.
Parkers discourse:
The moon is made of rock and is solid, so you can stand on it.
You have to have your helmet (half a large plastic Easter egg), so you can breathe while you are there.
There is a person inside, but he is not home right now!
Yes, I wore my helmet! I would not have missed this adventure for the world!


Two of the great grand kids were present to assist in making our cranberry relish this year.

Cranking that old hand grinder gets to be a hard job when you are 2 and 3, but it part of the tradition is the young ones do it, with a bit of help and enthusiasm from the older ones.

Then the youngest girl felt it necessary to share her favorite book with Miss Lily before taking a nap.

It was a fine day, yews, a very fine day!



frost flowers

November mornings can bring simple surprises!

Frost flowers are created by water seeping from a stem, then freezing.

This morning we came across a lot of them in our travels.

Delicate beauty, gone when the sun warms the earth.


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