Monthly Archives: March 2015

Seth Lane, this is for you!

The other day on my Facebook page, this adorable face showed up. I don’t know Seth. I don’t remember which of my Facebook friends posted it. But there he was, grinning from ear to ear in spite of his circumstances. All he asked was that we wear yellow today, March 27, because it is his favorite color.

That’s a pretty easy thing to do, or so I thought, to make a little boy happy. I searched my closet, just in case, not really expecting to find anything yellow because yellow is not my color. I look better in reds or blues or purples or greens. I did have one school t-shirt that was yellow back in the day when I taught art. That shirt must be around here somewhere still. It was for the fine arts department and was chosen by the drama teacher who had bright yellows shirts printed with the fine arts festival logo on the front and STAFF on the back. The students got blue shirts, I think, and we got the bright yellow ones so we would stick out in a crowd, like orange jumpsuits for prison inmates. Where is that shirt, I thought as I dug through the closet?

Nowhere I could find, I decided. So on to plan B. I was going to be out on the 26th to go to my physical therapy and then later to my Spanish class. In between, I would have time for some shopping. I needed to go to Costco anyway. There are some things I always get at Costco like tissues, paper towels, almonds, Greek yogurt–stuff that doesn’t spoil quickly or we use a lot of. I was pretty sure I had seen t-shirts in every color the last time I was there. I planned to buy a yellow one and wear it for work-out days or hiking or working in the yard. Who cared if it wasn’t my color.

So yesterday that was the plan. I packed my freezer bag with those blue cubes that I keep frozen so that I can buy perishable items on longer shopping days and not have them perish before I get home. I was ready for yogurt and t-shirt shopping. I had just enough time between PT and Spanish to get in one store. I was depending on Costco. But you know how Costco has a lot of something one time, but you better buy it when you see it, because it may not be there when you go back, or ever again? Well, I am not blaming Costco, because I may have imagined there was a yellow t-shirt amongst all the other colors. There were t-shirts all right. Several colors, in colors that are my colors, but yellow? Nope. Not one yellow anything for women.

There were kids clothes in yellow. And there was a nice pale yellow and blue striped collared golf shirt for men. I would have bought that for my husband who doesn’t golf but wears the shirts sometimes, but Costco didn’t have his size. I could have worn that one for the picture for Seth, but since neither hubby nor I could use it later, I didn’t think that was a good choice.

Getting desperate, I scanned the big clothing section and sure enough, there across the huge warehouse was something bright yellow, almost neon yellow-green, but yellower than green. I wheeled my buggy through the aisles as fast as I could. Men’s heavy workout pants and hoodies. Not my size, not my husband’s size, not my gender even.

I figured, I am going to let this little boy down and all he wants is my picture in something yellow. I drove my cart around the store dejectedly. There wasn’t time to go to Target or Belk or anywhere else.

Then a brilliant idea popped miraculously into my head. I didn’t have to buy that see-in-the-dark lemon-lime hoodie. I found the one that was closest to my size, pulled it over my head, took this selfie making sure not to show the long sticker that said large, large, large, large, large, large down the front of the shirt, and here it is, Seth, for you with all my hopes and prayers for your quick and safe recovery.


p.s.I folded the hoodie and placed it back on the stack as neatly as I could so someone who actually fits it can wear it. But out there will always be that hoodie, wishing you well, even if the owner doesn’t know it.


Our Birds have Minds of Their Own

When we first moved to the Green Forest, as we called our five acres on Settendown Creek, the birds were so used to having the place to themselves that our presence scared them away. The property had been owned by a couple of brothers, doctors who had money to invest in land. The bridge across the creek was washed away and nobody seemed to need it, so the county just let the road stop at the creek on either side. School districts were divided by the creek. People crossed it farther away, east or west. When our builder started pouring the cement for our basement, there wasn’t even power to plug the concrete spreaders to, but that is another story.

So back to the birds, we heard them only from a distance for a year or two. Gradually though, with sunflower, safflower, and other seed bribery, we coaxed them back and now 35.5 years later we have a forest full of birds. Wrens, robins, doves, cardinals, nuthatches, sparrows, hummingbirds, finches, woodpeckers of all sizes, and even Eastern bluebirds, who reportedly prefer meadows instead of forests. There are big birds, too—owls and hawks, and once a wild turkey, who came to snack beneath our feeders.

So in addition to feeders for birds of all appetites, we began collecting a wide range of houses. Nice houses, handmade, fine craft one-of-a-kind houses. Two of them are clay. The red clay one is by a folk artist from the well-known Craven potter family in Gillsville, Georgia. The grey one is by my buddy, Brenda, a fantastic potter and also one of the best art educators I have ever had to pleasure of working with. The third one is by a carpenter, whose family owns the Bottoms Christmas Tree Farm.

Then there’s the one I traded some of my own artwork (fused glass and fine silver jewelry) for at Wildcat on a Wing in Ball Ground, Georgia. It is cedar with a copper roof that has weathered to a nice patina over the years and I am always happy to see the bluebirds return to it in the spring to start another new family! Finally, this year for Christmas, I bought my husband, a volunteer fireman for over 30 years, this fire helmet bird house off the internet.

I would think house hunting bird families would start price wars over any of these lovely houses. I would think bird realtors would make millions on these houses so close to our feeders with water and shade nearby. Wouldn’t you think that, too?

But…as I said in the beginning, our birds have minds of their own. This is what I saw at the end of the driveway when I was headed out yesterday.

We canceled the newpaper for the summer.