Because this little guy is SO cute…

I still have trouble being like the puffin.

It’s OK to do what we can, and be happy about it. Isn’t it?

Today the minimum was forced on me. That’s not something I can change. What I am realizing, gradually and reluctantly, is to be thankful for anything and everything.

So I’m jumping into my bed. And will enjoy my Michael Connelly novel.

Thank you, little puffin.

This is a favourite….

White Lace on a Pale Green Ground

The breeze creates a rippling tide

of Queen Anne’s Lace from side to side;

the lovely tops design a spread

more beautiful than any bed.

***

The grass beneath is pale and dry,

through heat and drought it does not die.

The flowers come but once a year,

a welcome sight that’s held most dear.

***

But not to last for, to my dread,

the mowers cut them, every head!

How bare, how stark the meadow lay,

its graceful blanket torn away.

***

Ah! Now I wait another year

for fragile blooms to reappear.

All winter long, beneath the snow

the Queen Anne’s Lace prepares to grow!

***

The cruel blade it will defy

when August comes with sunny sky;

the sweet white lace will then be found

Garlanding the pale green ground.

***

Eleanor Lawrie

August 16, 2011

Just a Poem about Keeping Warm

MY DUVET

At long, long last the summer’s gone, the blazing heat has died away;

the sun is warm, the sky is blue, a lovely early autumn day.

The nights are cold, the air is crisp: some folk would greet this with dismay;

but if you need to look for me, you’ll find me wrapped in my duvet!

***

It’s been too hot for far too long, there’s been no energy to play;

but now I can enjoy the time, for even if the skies are gray

I’m snug inside, with all I need. And please forgive an old cliché,

but come what may, come rain or shine, I’m comfy wrapped in my duvet!

***

When winter comes with driven snow, and skiers need the warm chalet,

the breath will freeze upon our lips, the cold’s hard grip will have its way.

I’ll just stay put and have with joy a day to sit back and crochet!

My toes are warm, and my knees too, they’re all wrapped up in my duvet!

***

Then in the new year will come spring, the days grow warmer; April, May,

will bring the birds, the trees in bud, flowers burst forth in bright display.

But nights will keep their brisk, chill air; and onward, tomorrow and today,

you know where I will take myself : to bed wrapped up in my duvet!

Eleanor Lawrie

September 18, 2012

Just some HAIKU, November 2015

Writers Forum decided to experiment and thought HAIKU would be fun. Here are my decidedly amateurish attempts:

#1

Heavy gale winds

Many-coloured leaves flying

Teeming ladybugs

#2

Life’s a mystery

Youth blooms, its pleasures abound

Old age always wins

#3

The keyboard beckons

Methinks this is forever

Be damned, writers’ block!

#4

Her sweet babyhood

Barely a glimpse in the past

Now she’s fifty-one!

A Book for The Times

We are living in rather troubled times as we enter a new year.

When I think of all the issues, the one that stands out is bullying. Bullying is a lot like racism. It is built on lack of knowledge, unwillingness to give in, deciding someone is inferior when the truth is that there is just a superficial difference between the bully and the ‘bullied’.  The difference really doesn’t matter, if only the bully would stop and think about it.

‘Where is Virginia?’ is the third book in the SHELBY F. SQUIRREL series. We learn that Virginia has disappeared in the first chapter. Her family is new to the Flying Squirrel Sanctuary, having moved because of the terrible bullying that Virginia was dealing with. The reason for it? Her fur is pure white!!

The SHELBY F. SQUIRREL series is available on Amazon. Details on CONTACT INFORMATION page.

Shelby Goes Downhill

It was about two months after Christmas and there was still quite a bit of snow on the ground. Shelby and Darby loved to play in it, running about in circles and jumping on top of each other, spraying the white powdery flakes all around. But it was even more fun with other fellow frolickers. By early afternoon Shelby was wide awake and said to Darby, “Let’s go and find some friends to play in the snow!”
Darby was most agreeable; she loved being included in her brother’s adventures. He was so good at finding interesting new things to do. “I’ll go find Marvin and you see if you can wake up Molly and Polly,” she replied eagerly. Shelby thought that was a clever idea and it meant they would all be together sooner. The sun was bright as the five friends trotted off towards the meadow, with Shelby leading the way. They played tag for a little while and then flopped back to catch their breath.
Shelby sat up suddenly. “Hey, listen! I hear something!” he said and tipped his head to one side with one ear straight up. “It’s over there! Let’s go see!” They knew from experience that Shelby would go no matter what, so they set off together. The sounds led them through a small patch of trees and when they came to its edge they were at the top of a long hill where a group of children chattered merrily. Some of them were at the bottom and others at the top.
While the forest youngsters watched, two of the children positioned a long flat thing with a curled-up front and climbed aboard, shoving off with a big push. They went flying down the hill screaming with delight. At the same time, two others were making their way up dragging a differently shaped item behind them. It was perfectly flat, and sat on two runners, and a rope was attached to one end. The children soon did what the others had done, pushing off with great abandon and soaring perfectly down to the bottom. A few seconds later, Shelby and Marvin crept a bit closer.
Darby and the raccoon kids were right behind them. The children had gathered at the bottom and started throwing snowballs at each other. One of them had left a round red plastic disc at the top of the hill. Soon all the forest friends were lined up along the brow watching the scene below.
Off to one side a bigger boy had taken a sizable clump of snow and was rolling it on the snowy ground. Shelby’s eyes popped as he saw the shape grow into a large white ball. Soon the ball was half as high as the boy pushing it! Abruptly, he left it and began another. Two of the other children had gone to a fresh patch to start a ball of their own. Then they rolled it over and the big boy lifted it up and placed it on top of the first one.
“What are they doing?” Darby wanted to know. “They must be building something!” “Oh, look now, here comes another one!” said Molly as the children placed a third, much smaller ball on the top, which made the whole thing as tall as the biggest boy!
The children seemed to wander off after that. Shelby turned to say something to Marvin and noticed he had climbed onto the red plastic disc. Marvin explained, “My feet were cold and at least this isn’t covered in snow!” So Shelby joined him and sat down to relax for a few minutes.
Molly, Polly, and Darby went scampering off to the nearest fir tree to play tag in the feathery branches. “Let’s go and play tag too!” said Marvin suddenly, jumping over the edge of the red disc. Shelby felt it move and then start to slide. In a blur it was at the very edge of the hill and gathering speed! It slipped over the brink and raced down, down, down with the frightened flying squirrel hanging on for dear life.
“Shelby!!” screamed Darby. “Watch out!!” But there was nothing anyone could do. The red disc was headed straight for the big piled-up snowballs. There was a squishy crash and snow flew everywhere as Shelby ended his wild ride. Everything toppled over and the red disc spun off on its own. Shelby lay dazed on the ground. The children came running and one of them yelled out, “Our snowman! He’s ruined!!” They gathered around poor little Shelby, who was sitting up and trying to clear his head.
“You poor little guy!” one of the little girls said quietly, which made Shelby turn and look at her. By then Darby had raced down the hill to help her brother. The other three followed close behind. “We better move out of the way,” said the very wise little girl, “or he’ll be too afraid.” So they backed away and watched as Darby rushed up to Shelby and helped him get onto his feet.
The children could see that he was going to be alright, so they raised a cheer as a shaken little squirrel crept away from the demolished snowman. He felt much better very soon, so at the top of the hill he turned and looked down. The children were climbing up too, bringing the disc, the sled and toboggan. The little girl who had spoken put the toboggan down and pointed to it and at the animals to ask it anyone wanted to ride down with her. Marvin and Shelby decided quickly that it would be fun now that there was nothing at the bottom to crash into.
Away they whizzed while Darby held her breath and Molly and Polly ran back and forth to show how worried they were. Honestly, boys have no sense! they thought. But before they could blink, the little girl had towed the toboggan back up the hill with Shelby and Marvin grinning from ear to ear!
It was such a wonderful afternoon, the rest of it spent with all of them taking turns on the front of the toboggan. And they were all so tired that night they slept right through, missing the night hunt altogether. Marvin finally appeared under the squirrel tree half way through the next morning. Molly and Polly slept so long they missed lunch! Mother was rather upset and wouldn’t let either Darby or Shelby out of her sight for the next several days.

Shelby Meets his BFF

mouse

SHELBY GOES CAMPING

(How did you meet your BFF? This is most of the story from ‘The Complete Adventures of SHELBY F. SQUIRREL and Friends’.  What’s missing here is the bit that tells us how the whole F. Squirrel family saw a campfire in the meadow, complete with singing and marshmallow roasting, during the ritual evening food hunt. Shelby went to bed filled with curiosity. Here’s how his morning unfolded…..)

Shelby awoke early after another hunt through the forest just before sunrise. He crept out of the nest in his well-practised way, without disturbing Mother and Darby, and in no time at all was sitting upright on the edge of the meadow, his nose and ears twitching as he took in the scene.

A lot of boys and a few big people were busily going in all directions. There were tents, piles of wood, picnic tables, all in what seemed like utter chaos. Shelby was quite mesmerized by it all. He didn’t know what to make of it.

“Hey!” a voice squeaked from just below him. He looked down and saw a tiny creature with a very long skinny tail, little round ears, a pointed nose, long whiskers and piercing eyes. “Who are you? Even better, what are you?” it squeaked again.

“Oh! Oh!” mumbled Shelby, trying to organize his thoughts. “I – I – (hic!) I’m a squirrel. My name’s Shelby F. Squirrel. Pleased to meet you! (hic!)” He was trying to remember to be polite.

“Well, hello then, Shelby F. Meet Marvin F. Mouse! Glad to know you, I’m sure. We have the same middle initial! Are you a Field Squirrel? I bet you are, I bet you are!!”

Oh, here we go again, thought Shelby. Nobody has ever seen a flying squirrel!

But he explained patiently to Marvin about his own F. Marvin’s face changed from OH! to WOWIE!! as he listened.

“What a team we could make, Shelby! You want me to show you what this bunch of stuff in the meadow is all about?”

First they went into a tent with rumpled-up sleeping bags and clothing strewn all around. Marvin explained that this was a Scout camp and they were here every June on the second weekend. They scurried out of the sleeping tent just as two half-dressed boys popped through the flap, too busy chatting to notice the little animals.

“This is the most important place to know about!” squeaked Marvin. “It’s the cook tent, and we can find lots of good things to eat. Just don’t knock anything over or there will be trouble for sure!” he warned.

They crept into the tent through the flap that acted as a door. “Follow me!” said Marvin. And he climbed up onto a shelf with boxes and packages piled high on it. He chewed with rapid tiny bites into one of the bags and soon light brown flakes were spreading on the shelf.

“I love this taste! It’s called oats,” said Marvin, sounding even more squeaky as he nibbled furiously. “They cook it and eat it in the morning.” Shelby agreed that it tasted wonderful and dug right in.

Neither of them noticed that the bag was starting to lean over, and suddenly it toppled, teetered a moment, then plunged headlong over the edge of the shelf!

C-RRRR-ASH!!!! The ruined bag of oats landed on a pile of huge cooking pots and knocked everything every which way! Just as Marvin had predicted, the sound of running feet was heard immediately and shouting voices came nearer in a flash.

The two new friends streaked for the door, veering sharply around the edge of the flap exactly as the first person dashed inside.

“Shelby, help me get away!” screamed Marvin. “They’ll step on me! Oh, HELLLP!” With that he leaped onto Shelby’s back and hung on for dear life.

Shelby’s feet barely touched the ground, while he headed for the first tree at the edge of the meadow. Without looking back, he scrabbled up the trunk, his claws slipping badly because of his passenger, who was tiny but was extra weight nonetheless.

Huffing and puffing and hiccupping to beat the band, Shelby paused for a few seconds on the first limb. Then, steeling himself to be strong, he quickly climbed to a higher branch and with a whisper to Marvin, “Hang on TIGHT!” he leaped into space.

“Hey, hey, we’re flying!” yelled Marvin in Shelby’s ear. “I think I’ll change what my middle initial stands for from now on! Marvin FLYING Mouse; what do think of that?”

And Shelby thought it was just fine with him! No doubt he and Marvin F. were going to be fast friends for a long, long time.

Simple Things Matter the Most

BD flowers 2 after a week (2)

A lovely pink Gerbera and five proud Verona Tulips. It’s a beautiful  bouquet for the table. Flowers for my birthday; they were received with great joy and gratitude, but presented with even more. The giver’s eyes sparkled with such affection for this birthday girl; hearts feeling a deep satisfaction for, oh, so many reasons.

Having just moved to my daughter’s and son-in-law’s home, not only to be in a safe haven during Covid-19, protected and able to stay home, not having to venture out to shop for anything, but to stay here and be a permanent member of the household. This is a life change of real significance, and all of that came together with those simple blooms.

I’m so in love with this little bunch of flowers. How can I make them last forever?  I have my photos, and now I’m sharing them with you, my dear readers.

That tiny bouquet signals the end of too many unhappy years and the beginning of new hope. Even at this exalted age of 77, I have new hope. Even with Covid-19 hovering in our midst, I can still have new hope.

I hear laughter every day in this home. I even feel like contributing to that laughter and joining in. It’s a necessary part of life, an essential part of a happy life, and natural to a life filled with love.

Not only was there a special meal for my birthday; there was a wonderful layer cake, made that morning, and iced while we watched, letting dinner settle a bit. And we all celebrated that cake as a big occasion for my daughter, even though she is an amazing cook and baker. First time to make that kind of cake!! Now, that was also an event. A joyous event!

I want to show you the bouquet as it looked on its first day here. It’s so fresh and lovely, it’s balanced, it’s beautiful in every way.

BD Flowers 2020

But only one Gerbera and five tulips stayed strong long enough to grace our table over a week later.

This is my wish for each and every one of you. Be the one Gerbera and five tulips. Stay strong in this highly difficult and stressful time for our families and friends and our world. Don’t think too much about the questions, just hang in there. Be a proud pink Gerbera. Be a strong and stubborn creamy-white Verona Tulip.

 

 

Just some thoughts…

Happy Easter

It’s a rainy Monday. Easter Monday. A holiday for some. A workday for others.

But today, this Monday in April 2020, most people the world over are at home, and not with family or friends, because of an invasion into our lives by an ugly little squiggle of misery being called Covid-19.

Perhaps it’s worth suggesting a calm reflection: Spring will happen, buds will open, grass will grow, birds will nest and summer will come, the world will go on. And this virus will cycle through to an end, a control, a solution, or just lose its initial power.

Every day is a day closer to returning to a life without the fright and the restrictions. Every hour is an hour that we can reach out to loved ones to say a reassuring word, ask how a friend is faring, inquire if there is a way you can help a neighbour, write a letter to an elderly relative you’ve never met.

We deeply grieve the deaths, of course, and we all somehow fear that we or someone we love will be swept up and taken away by this invading entity.

But we still have today, we have this hour to live through.  Use it! Use it to do something small and insignificant. Use it to relax your mind, to reassure your soul, to ease your anxiety. Do something you haven’t done in years, tell yourself you are lucky to do the mundane chores you have to do every day, because you still can do them.

And just maybe, when the dust finally settles, the world will have learned a lesson or two about empathy, coming together, and we might just find a different level of harmony in our existence. We are all the same; just humans put here for a myriad of reasons that most of never will begin to understand.

I hope we will have learned to slow down, to savour each moment; to continue living but with more insight into the importance of loving, of being, of sharing, of kindness, and just maybe we can do less judging, act with less greed, be more honest with each other in every facet of our minutes and hours, days, weeks, and years.

Above all, keep laughter in your heart, let it out to colour the atmosphere in your home, in your room, in your apartment. Let it ring, loud and clear. And if there are tears, don’t be ashamed, let them fall, but then dry your eyes, put your shoulders back, lift your head high and live your life.

I am no scholar, and I don’t pretend to have any solid answers. Why write this down? Just in case it’s worth something to one person, just in case it gives one person a little something to make these days a tiny bit more tolerable. I humbly give each of you, my fellow human beings, my whole heart with all my love and sympathy and support.

 

 

 

 

 

The REAL Crisis of the So-called Opioid Crisis

PAIN Tear of BloodPAIN Barbed Wire

NOT ACCEPTABLE: DEPRIVING PEOPLE  PAIN RELIEF

The ‘opioid crisis’ is far more of a real crisis to the people with chronic untreatable pain who now have no solution for their daily suffering, than any number of overdose deaths.

Treat the people who become addicted!!! Instead they are made out to be criminals. And their sentences are handed to me and millions of others like me.

The path being taken by governments is absolutely wrong for too many people, but that doesn’t seem to matter one bit. What are the choices? Street drugs and/or suicide. Of course, the move to deprive pain sufferers of relief is going to lead to more harmful choices!! I believe this is a Human Rights violation. It inflicts pain instead of relieving it, and this also violates the Hippocratic Oath.

The alternatives that I have been offered are ALL habit-forming and worse, must be taken on a regular basis. I could take less Percocet or Lorazepam on my good days, or on really bad days take more. I know my side effects, and am adjusted to them.

PAIN

Instead, I am faced with having nothing or starting on yet another drug that will make me ill. Lyrica, Elavil, Cymbalta, Gabapentin, Cyclobenzaprine, Codeine. ALL made me ill, two caused Angioedema, the rest stopped my digestive system from functioning.

I can’t take Ibuprofen or ASA or Naproxen for pain (none of those works anyway). Acetaminophen does not do the job either, not even if I take the maximum dose, which is probably more harmful, especially to my liver, than any opiate. Why would I want to even try yet another drug? I’m not that crazy!!!

Every alternative to Lorazepam must be taken daily (some not becoming effective for 3 or more weeks. Why would I try a drug like that, not knowing for almost a month whether it will work or not? Meanwhile it’s making me ill and nothing else!) I will never try any such drug. NEVER.

My GP informed me this week that unless I am off the Lorazepam he cannot continue to be my doctor!!! So now it’s blackmail and I AM THE VICTIM! How on EARTH did this happen to our doctors?

Cannabis oil made me sick, I don’t want to smoke so I am vaping. Yesterday the severe pain persisted despite continuously using the vape, until I finally gave in and took 1/4 of a 5/325 mg Percocet and 1/2 of a 1 mg Lorazepam. (Both are now denied me, but I’ve managed to wean off and keep a few. What on earth am I in for once those are gone?) The pain receded after taking those tiny bits, thank goodness. I shudder to think how I would be feeling by now had I not been able to resort to those small chips of medication last night.

Where is the healing and caring in this kind of doctoring? It’s all a smoke-screen about protecting the doctors from losing their licences just for doing their jobs. If the system would only do the right thing, I would be able to sign a waiver removing responsibility from my doctor for ‘allowing’ me to actually receive pain relief.

What a damned sick joke all of this has become.

PAIN Fist

 

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