Tag Archive: nature

One evening this week, I opened up my back door to let my dogs outside and I was hit with an incredibly wonderful aroma. Soft, sweet, and intoxicating, little white flowers bloomed by the hundreds on my jasmine vines. The amazing thing is there were no flowers on either of my vines earlier that afternoon. It’s like they all decided to pop open at once and surprise me!

The aroma was so enchanting, I decided to open all my windows in the back of the house. Jasmine wafted through the house all evening and its continued to linger in the air all week long. Aside from the springy smell, the vines themselves have double in size this year and now wrap around patio roof posts. After watching them struggle this winter, its so nice to see them thriving.


Jasmine vine gone wild!

The sunflower is another interesting story. Our Monster Sunflower sprouted two more stems with buds and this one bloomed this week. The other one broke off due to an odd angle and the weight of the bud.  The main bloom was quite small (as expected), but weirdly enough it grew larger after all the petals fell off. That’s a story I’ll have to share once it stops growing!

Over on the plant rack, my seedlings are getting so big! While my vegetable starters are almost ready to go into the garden (probably this weekend), my flower tray holds the biggest surprise. I’ve never been very successful in growing any sort of flower except a wildflower mix in the yard, so it was really exciting to see several sprouts. In particular, four out five nasturtium seeds came up! This week, they graduated to a larger pot, along with another unidentified flower.

The garden rabbit took a break from sniffing the jasmine to help me celebrate graduation day . . .


I hope these guys keep growing!

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What’s your favorite thing this week?

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c.b.w. 2014

Poem A Day Challenge: April 7-8

I hope you’re digging National Poetry Month as I’ll be posting quite a bit of poetry this week. Thanks to the April Poem A Day Challenge, I have several poems backlogged that are ready to be seen beyond the comment section of Poetic Asides.

April 7, 2014
Prompt: Write a self-portrait poem.

A fashion moron,
addicted to jeans
Knitting is my thing,
but forget crochet
Grew up as a nerd,
proudly still called one
From comic book stacks
to Twihard status
A dork to the core,
you’ll never change me
Nose stuck in a book,
classics and mainstream
Pages turn each night,
a cat sleeps on my lap
Never a mother,
except for furkids
Teenagers, I teach
they’ll never scare me
When they learn, I smile,
my day is worthwhile
After a good run,
I search for my muse
She keeps my words safe,
while I find a pen

Inspiration: Me. Every word is true.

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April 8, 2014
Prompt: Two for Tuesday – Write a violence and/or peace poem.

Pastel petals,
innocent face
Elegant curves,
long and slender
The siren calls,
baiting the trap

Thorns lay hidden,
ready to strike
Bloodthirsty fangs,
aching to bite
To eat her fill,
Venus must lie

Inspiration: My first thought was a Venus Flytrap, so I ran with it!  Such a pretty little plant, but also quite deadly to those that fall for the trap. What a perfect incarnate of the prompt!


Venus Flytrap Photo: Wikipedia Commons


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Happy poeming!

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c.b.w. 2014

About a month ago, I laced up my running shoes for the first time in almost a year. Between the overwhelming nature of my day job and the exhaustion that resulted, my daily workout became a thing of the past. Thanks to my slug status, I gained twenty pounds. Yikes.

The weight isn’t what bothered me (well, maybe a little), but rather the overall sense of feeling worn down and lazy. There’s something wrong when a little afternoon nap turns into three hours on the couch. I was fast becoming a couch potato with no motivation to get up and move.

This state of lethargy just wasn’t me. I’m not a sitter, I’m a runner! And not just a jogger on the sidewalk. I’m a trail runner that loves twists, turns, dirt, and rocks. I’m the person that runs uphill to get to a trail that skirts a small mountain. The climb stretches every muscle and kickstarts my pulse, but the view makes the “burn” worth it. I get to watch the sun set without a roof or lamppost in sight!

Tired of being “not me,” I got up and dug through the closet until I found my running shoes. I slipped them on and it felt like I had reunited with an old friend. To my great surprise, I ran a full mile that day and walked another two. Apparently, my muscles were happy to be back on the trail!

My running shoes.

In the first three weeks, I lost seven pounds and experienced a huge resurgence of energy. It’s amazing how just a little bit of exercise can make such big difference. What’s more, I really enjoy that hour of “quiet time.” It’s just me, the ground, and nothing else. No music, TV, internet, or any other plugged in distraction. While my body feels better, so does my mind.

This week, I hit a milestone of running 1.5 miles and walking 1.5 miles for a total of 3 miles. I’m well on my way to reaching my old standard of running 2.5 miles and walking for 1 mile.  With the help of my running shoes, I’ll be there in no time!

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What’s your favorite thing this week?

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c.b.w. 2014


Blue meets blue,
at soul’s edge
Pillars stand,
keeping watch
One of wind,
one by hand
Hearts will leap,
hindsight lost 
Aching depth,
soaring heights

Cliffs of Moher, Ireland
Photo by: c.b.w. 2009

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c.b.w. 2014

A giant is lurking in our yard. What started as a random sunflower growing on the edge of the grass patch has grown into a stalk of almost nine feet! Not bad for a seed I didn’t plant in a place reserved for grass and jasmine vines. Somehow, one little sunflower seed landed in this spot and decided he like it there enough to sprout and grow and grow and grow and grow …


Reaching above the roof! The garden rabbit is a teeny, tiny creature compared to the giant. Photo by: c.b.w. 2014

I’ve planted sunflowers in the garden box and along the fence, but none of them ever reached the height and size of what I now call my sunflower tree. When he first popped through the grass back in early February, I thought he’d grow to four or five feet (like most of the random sunflowers that sometimes show up in the yard), give a little burst of yellow, and fade away. Boy, was I wrong! This thing is huge and it’s been really fun to watch it get taller.

When it hit six feet, it started to fall over from its own weight, so I propped it against a lattice.  When it grew a couple more feet, I had to bring in a metal patio chair to hold the weight – he keeps leaning further and further over to reach the afternoon sun. A huge bud sits at the top of the stalk and it’s getting bigger every day. I am anxiously waiting for a big, bright yellow sunflower to bloom.

Of course, the garden rabbit is fascinated by the biggest sunflower he’s ever seen. The leaves alone are three times bigger than him!


That’s a mighty big salad! Photo by: c.b.w. 2014

Don’t worry, he didn’t break this particular leaf. It got stuck in the patio chair when I was trying to find a safe place for the sunflower to rest.

The stem (or trunk!) is a good three inches around, which makes me wonder just how big the root system is on this monster! The rabbit better not get any ideas about nibbling.


Now, that’s a sunflower stem! Photo by: c.b.w. 2014

From where the rabbit sits, this sunflower looks a lot like something that’s only possible with three magic beans. Fee-fi-fo-fum, I smell the blood of an Englishman!


Keep climbing! Photo by: c.b.w. 2014


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What’s your favorite thing this week?

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c.b.w. 2014





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