The Old Oak Tree

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The Cycle of Life

I sit and I wonder at the beauty I see

The flicker of the light through the old oak tree

Shimmering green against the pale blue sky

Watching the birds zoom through as they fly

The grass beneath is beginning to turn brown

Still you hold every leaf so it doesn’t fall down

As the air turns cooler for this time of year

I look for the colors changes we hold so dear

For many the oak is a symbol of great life

With its strength and resilience bypassing its strife 

She holds on to her leaves and sheds them last

A reminder to us all, this life goes too fast

We forget the truths of the stories we are told

That life is a cycle much purer than gold.

Anita Neal

With the understanding of life as we live through it paces, lets us never forget the stories of old that teach us the values that come from life, nature and God’s wonderful story of you. We are each His greatest creation because we reflect His love and His being. Like the old oak tree understanding the value of each leaf, God understand the value of each of us. Remember how precious you are to God and reflect His kindness wherever you go.

 

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Through the Eyes of Daisy

Daisy Mae

My name is Daisy, looking at you, or Daisy Mae to be fully true.

You see my color of black is true, but tonight I feel the color of blue.

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Odd people were here, may one, no two, painting the walls, it’s smells phew

I bumped her leg, for something to do, she said no, what’s a dog to do?

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I pick up my bone and begin to chew, I found a great holder, her old yard shoe

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This was not fun, so left it askew, I stretch out long, yeah, I am looking at you.

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I am bored, just wanting something to do, she said no, what’s a dog to do.

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My name is Daisy, since I’ve nothing to do, I send out a hello especially for you.

Anita Neal

 

And as always remember to be kind to all kinds.

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CFFC Challenge,Wilting & Dying

We are now getting into the sad time of year where the beauty of the spring flowers are about done. Its about time to start planting the fall flowers of yellows and golds.

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Even though the under brush is dying, the determination to bloom still holds.
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The bloom of the sunflower has bowed in death, yet the birds still feast on the few seeds left.
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The pods of this beauty are curled in death but a new life is sprinkled to the ground for spring.
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The leaves of the tomato where fruit was enjoyed lay wrinkled in death at the end of a season.

 

Come join in on Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge. This week’s CFFC topic is Special Request: Wilting, dead or aging flowers and leaves. Be creative and mostly have a lot of fun.

But remember the beauty they gave us earlier in the year with their colors so vibrant and fragrances so dear. We bid them goodbye, dreaming of the next season come and encourage them to tell us “what about next year?”

I am reminding you as always to be kind and enjoy the simple things of life. I am sharing a picture group that shows pure joy…hope it makes you smile. Thank you Random Acts of Kindness for the Photos.

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Storms of Life

Today we had a really bad storm, 90+ mph winds, hurricane force, In Iowa. Many people in this area are without power but I was lucky. Storms are nothing to ignore, some are very serious but I remind you as I posts pictures of what I saw today, that God is always with us.

We heard the weather reports saying the storm would be in Davenport between 2 & 3 but as fast as it was going it was there shortly after 1. These first pictures are the clouds moving in. Both pictures were taken within one minute of each other. That is how fast it was moving. I apologize in advance if this is boring to you, but I find the weather fascinating. To me the weather during storms shows the awesome power of God.
Even when things seem to be blowing around us uncontrollably, God is still with us…keeping us safe from the storms.
Col 1 17
All through scripture God reminds us he is our refuge and our strength…
Psalm 46 1
I do sincerely pray everyone is safe from today’s storms as they moved through the midwest and that you did not suffer bad damage. It can be so scary to see nature just fall apart around you. A coworker and I stood at the glass doors of the church watching the greenhouse receive damaging tears and at times it looked as though she would fully bend in half and be pulled completely up from the ground and go sailing. This is a community outreach item where we help the neighborhood have fresh vegetables during the summer months.
The wind was still blowing and the house was still shaking when we left. My daughter tells me there were several semi-trucks that were blown over on the interstates around the area. We as followers of Christ can always fall back on the scriptures when it seems fearful and hopeless. He is there to guide us and protect us from all storms.

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Isaiah: 
Although we had no power in the church, we were safe. God was protecting us from the storm. Trees and huge limbs were snapped on all sides of the building but the building was not damaged…unless there is wind damaged we have yet to find.
When you have an older community with massive hardwood that are decades old, they can not handle those types of winds very well. Sometime when we feel older, the buffeting winds of life seem more that we can handle, But I promise, God is always there.
Through all of life’s troubles, we are reminded in scripture, old and new testament, that He is always with us and we can be safe in His shadow.
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I remind you of this last scriptural encouragement before closing. All through the bible, God teaches us of the troubles of this world and that to take heart…He has overcome the world and these are the lessons we learn and hang on to with the hope of His love and care.
Romans 15 4, Hope
So hang on to faith as it brings us the hope and endurance to survive.
And as always, even in hard times of trouble, try to be kind. It may be the only hope someone may see that day of that storm.
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Tuesday Writing Prompt, July 7

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Picture of my street

The Stillness of the Morn

In the stillness of the morning, before day has ere began

The fog fill the tress and hangs heavy across the land

The moisture covers thickly and drips heavy from the trees

No sounds of life among them, not even birds or bees

One dare not be the first, the break this eerie sound

In the stillness of morning, there is no sound around.

 

Anita Neal

Go Dog Go Cafe has this fun Tuesday writing prompt that I enjoy, I just like adding pictures to help inspire me. Devereaux Frazier and Beth Amanda are currently hosting the Tuesday Writing Prompt Challenge which was started by our star writer Christine Ray. The prompts are designed to be quick challenges that can be written in 10 to 15 minutes,  inspire you creatively, are fun, and get everyone interacting.

Today’s prompt: Write a poem or piece of prose around the words “in the stillness”.

As you read the many who play along, remember the stillness of the new day and try to always start with kindness. It will make your day be filled with imagination and love.

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A Photo A Week Challenge: Squirrel

I have gone to great links to keep the squirrels out of my bird feeders…refusing to buy to 150.00 whirly-gig that spins them off. I think maybe I finally won…at least for now..by removing easy access to the feeder. We will see but for now, this guy look pretty disgusted. I wrote a Haiku about him earlier in the week when I first saw him sitting there, yet each day he returns to sit on this post and “study how to get to the feeder”. You can almost see the wheels turning.

 

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After awhile he turns away but remains on the pole. Memories of an easy treat now gone.

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Need to clean my windows.

Come join in on Nancy Merrill’s A Photo A Week and show us the squirrels in your camera’s view. And remember, even squirrels know how to be kind…

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So, share the beauty of nature with a friend and be kind.

His Name is George

I do love my yard during the spring and summer months for all the many birds that come to visit. You can tell the difference in the younger ones who have not fully fledged out yet or got their adult colors. This morning George stopped by with his high shrill and really upset the other birds. George is a hawk. My phone does not have a good zoom and cropping made him fuzzy but still he was beautiful.

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Here is a picture I took yesterday and the sun made a neat effect. George is on the stump of the tree in the center. Hopefully by Christmas I will have a real camera with a true zoom lens where I can really play.

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Since I live close to a state park, we have more than the normal wildlife. Deer will walk down the street like they own the place and groundhogs will zoom through your yard as well. Here is George flying and squawking at his other brother George as they search for food.

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Although my pictures are not great, they do show the beauty of nature all around us. This beauty reflects God’s love of creation and wanting to share it with us. So when outside, take in all the beauty around you and when you see something special, smile and know this was a gift given for you to enjoy.

And as always be kind…to all kinds.

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Weeds Are Beautiful Too, FOTD, SMM

All the many wonderful photographers in this “blog-us-sphere” have such fun prompts to remind us that even the forgotten or tiny parts of nature are still beautiful. I am linking in with Irene’s Sunshine Macro Monday and Cee’s  Flower of the Day to show the beautiful “weeds” in my yard. A weed is really just a flower you can’t buy at the store.

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The delicateness of a wild violet bloom is amazing with it’s rich purple stripes and yellow center. Looking at it real close it almost looks like a tiny orchid.

I fully realize it is flower of the day and not flowers, but who can resist the happy yellow dandelion. Yard tenders hate them but they are so important for the bees in early spring so I allow them for a short period.

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And as spring brings a smile to our face, even though we are staying closer to home, we still need to remember to be kind. With the many stresses involved in staying home, kindness is more important that ever. So be safe and be kind.

be kind

 

 

 

Winter or Spring? SMM Fun

Heavens Sunshine has a fun prompt for Monday’s of each week, giving you a week to get the post made, cuz some of us need more time…but the prompt is macro photography, Sunshine’s Macro Monday. Currently I use my phone but am hoping by fall I can buy a real camera, some things this phone camera will not do.

Well, it is currently 29 degrees in Iowa. Don’t know about you but that is not spring weather in my book and it’s April 14. When we had that beautiful spring weather last week, I did sneak out to the store and bought my first plant – it is currently living in my bedroom.

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This is a miniature Rhododendron and the bloom cluster is actually a little smaller than my thumb making the single bloom quite small.

As spring fully gets in gear, let the beauty of it bring you a smile. We are all living hidden in our homes soon this will pass. I am reminded in today’s devotion that while this may not be our final home, there are signs everywhere here of the beauty of that home. May you enjoy the beauty of spring and remember to always be kind, especially now where we are all just a little on edge.

kind Eph

 

CFFC, Fun With the Past

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge allows us to bring fun from our archives or new pictures that reflect ideas from the picture above : Mural, covered bridge, car, green, grass, vintage car, people, trees, road, flowers, landscape, sidewalk, or come up with your own topic.

So below are some of my pictures of the past. Since we are venturing out less right now, I felt this was a fun way to deal with the self quarantine.

Mural, one of several from my town, Rock Island Illinois:

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Centennial Bridge between Iowa and Illinois and blue sky:

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Flowers, can’t wait until spring:

Landscape & trees around town:

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Old cars:

We are now in a time of more fear and resentment and the need for kindness and patience is drastically needed more than ever. Remember to always be kind especially when others are not. Be the light they need.

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