Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Time Warp

While we were driving through the Loess Hills on Saturday en route to visit my grandmother's grave, we passed through a small town that I had been to a few times as a child. We went because there was a geocache there to discover.

It was like stepping back in time!

None of the streets in Castana, Iowa are paved.

The old school appeared to be closed.

The central park had a cool memorial to local veterans, which included the corner pillars and entrance to the former bank which is no longer standing on the site. There was also a time capsule buried there, scheduled to be opened in 2036.

At the community center we discovered Castana's volunteer fire truck, ready to be dispatched in case of emergency!

What do you think? 1940's? 1950's?

Sunday, October 16, 2011


"Whan that aprill with his shoures soote The droghte of march hath perced to the roote, And bathed every veyne in swich licour Of which vertu engendred is the flour; Whan zephirus eek with his sweete breeth Inspired hath in every holt and heeth Tendre croppes, and the yonge sonne Hath in the ram his halve cours yronne, And smale foweles maken melodye, That slepen al the nyght with open ye (so priketh hem nature in hir corages); Thanne longen folk to goon on pilgrimages, And palmeres for to seken straunge strondes, To ferne halwes, kowthe in sondry londes;" Geoffrey Chaucer

Or, if you don't happen to do too well with Middle English, a modern translation of Chaucer's opening lines in the General Prologue to The Canterbury Tales:

Here begins the Book of the Tales of Canterbury When April with his showers sweet with fruit The drought of March has pierced unto the root And bathed each vein with liquor that has power To generate therein and sire the flower; When Zephyr also has, with his sweet breath, Quickened again, in every holt and heath, The tender shoots and buds, and the young sun Into the Ram one half his course has run, And many little birds make melody That sleep through all the night with open eye (So Nature pricks them on to ramp and rage)- Then do folk long to go on pilgrimage, And palmers to go seeking out strange strands, To distant shrines well known in sundry lands.

DH and I went on a pilgrimage I have been longing to make for a few months now. My grandmother was one who, when she was physically able, kept the tradition of visiting family burial sites alive and well. She felt drawn to go, to spend some moments with kin and letting precious memories wash over her, carrying her beyond the here and now to be gathered in with those she'd loved and lost along the journey.

Although Chaucer's pilgrims set out in April, and my grandmother usually set out beginning on Memorial Day and continued on through the summer months, Saturday seemed like the day for me to make the trek to visit grandma's final resting place.

It's a peaceful spot, atop a hill outside of Turin, Iowa. The hills are lovely in any season, but were especially so on the first crisp and sunny Saturday of autumnal weather this year.

We wandered the cemetery after visiting her grave, listened to the wind and bird song afloat on the day's breezes and enjoyed being out. We found some geocaches along the way and made a few other discoveries too! (I'll save them for another day.)

I miss my grandmother. And I'm thankful to have made the pilgrimage to her final resting place.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

I Suspected

I've been hearing lots of chatter lately about Facebook and some of its alleged practices. I've long wondered about the actualy benefits of the site and other social networking sites. I have my doubts as to whether FB or any of them really ever connected people in anything other than a superficial (dare I add, ARTIFICIAL) way. [Yes, yes, I know....I AM over 45 years old. I am still entitled to my thoughts and opinions!]

When I got home from school this afternoon to check Facebook in order to see if there were any updates on family who've been have a rough time of it healthwise and are hospitalized, I got the following response from my computer security/anti-virus software:

(actual screen shot of my computer upon my third attempt to access FB.)

Saturday, October 08, 2011


If you have never watched any of the TED talks before, I would invite you to check them out! You'll find thought provoking, meaningful and inspirational speeches and ideas from some terrific people! Check it out!!

Here is one I recently watched and enjoyed:

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Tuesdays With . . .

well, my name's not Morrie....so perhaps I should have found a better title!

Not sure how it got to be October already. Tomorrow is school picture day at the elementary building where I work. Bleh.....that means being in front of the camera rather than behind where I am most comfortable. I HATE getting my picture taken.

(My husband is always kidding me that the kids will look back on all our family photos and assume they were raised in a single parent household because I am not in 98% of the photos!)

If you look closely, however, you'll often spot me in photos, like this one from Ryan and Tiffany's wedding:

Yes, that's me--in shadow form--across the front of the couple. (I hope that doesn't ruin the photo for my friend Val as it has for me!!)

In knitting news, I have completed both the baby afghan and the cabled sweater and hat combo I was working on for my nephew's baby coming in February. I had enough yarn left over from the afghan that I am now making a hat and bootie set from that yarn. Photos to come in a future post!

For now, I'll "leaf" you with another shot I took at the park last Saturday!

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Saturday In the Park

Went to the local state park today, just for a drive and a photo adventure. Here are a couple things I spotted!

The last is my new desktop background! Cheers!