Category Archives: On the Lighter Side

Autumn Reflections – October 21, 2019

Carol A. Hand

Golden moments in October

*

A golden moment when I got home after meeting with my class – Saturday, October 19, 2019

*

help one keep balanced
when life presents
too many responsibilities
to complete
before the winter snows

*

Preparing to process a bounty of carrots

*

Harvesting gardens and preserving food
Celebrating joyous family events

*

Celebrating My Daughter’s Birthday – October 18, 2019

*

Grading student papers in ways
that build knowledge and confidence
providing encouragement for all
to continue on the path
of life-long learning

***

Please know that I appreciate all of my virtual friends. I apologize for missing your recent blog posts and failing to reply to comments in a timely fashion. Despite rising early many days and going to bed in the wee morning hours, I am having a hard time finishing everything that needs to be done. I honestly can’t remember a busier time. The list of assignments that need to be graded keeps growing each day while gallons of carrots await processing in bags and containers that leave little space in my refrigerator even though I have given many away to neighbors and friends.

Maybe I’ll have some time to catch up between semesters… In the meantime, on this rainy, blustery day, I send my best wishes and hope you all experience golden moments, too.

*

Mothers’ Day Reflections – May 12, 2019

Carol A. Hand

Walking down the street of a once thriving tourist town

*

Two Harbors, MN – May 12, 2019

*

I wonder about the stories these old buildings hold

*

Two Harbors, MN – May 12, 2019

*

about The Oldest Sister and the Muffin Makers
and those who spent their summers here long ago

*

Enjoying Lake Superior – May 12, 2019

*

I wonder if the superior lake carries memories
through all time of those who once visited her shore

*

Family Celebrating Mothers’ Day – May 12, 2019

*

 

A Snowy Birthday – 2019

Carol A. Hand

The super moon brightened the sky
on the night before my birthday
despite increasing cumulus clouds
promising another imminent storm

*

February 19, 2019

*

The snowiest February on record
was older than me on my birthday
yet the sight on the morning after
brought this year close to a tie

*

February 21, 2019

*

It seems all I’ve done is shovel snow,
grade student papers, and prepare classes
My yak trax are wearing thin with use
and my little car, White Pony,
is surrounded by growing piles of snow

*

February 23, 2019

*

Given the weather forecast for this week
we’re likely to set a new record
Ah, my aching back and shoulders
make me hope the meteorologists are wrong…

*

Yet I am grateful for so many things
The chance to work with colleagues
who genuinely care about students and teaching
The opportunity to work with students
who are eager to learn and think critically
Virtual friends whose creativity, passion, and kindness
bring blessings of beauty, laughter, and new knowledge
A long life that has brought me to an old house
in the northlands where I can marvel
at the beauty of tiny crystals and wonder
how many billions it takes to blanket the earth
for hundreds of square miles under three feet of snow
And the health and strength to shovel
and shovel
and shovel
wondering
if spring
will
ever
come
again

 

PS – If you’re curious to know how my car got the name “White Pony,” here are some links to older posts that tell pieces of the story:

https://voices-from-the-margins.blog/2015/01/01/reflections-on-winters-past/

https://voices-from-the-margins.blog/2015/07/25/la-joie-de-la-vie/

A Trip to the Park

Carol A. Hand

Skyline Drive – October 14, 2018

*

We set off for a visit to Enger Park

*

*

despite a sky growing increasingly dark

*

*

passing by rocky cliffs

*

*

and winding shore

*

Engler Tower – October 14, 2018
My Daughter and Granddaughter at Enger Tower -, October 14, 2018

*

toward Enger Tower to explore

*

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*

beneath trees adorned with autumnal glory

*

A Dusting of Snow – October 15, 2018

*

just before winter snow in northern territory

*

Reflections on a Rainy Thursday in September

Carol A. Hand

Who would believe it?

That inspiration for grading student papers

would come from advice inside a fortune cookie?

“Nine tenths of education is encouragement.”

I will just have to wait and see

if following this advice helps students

overcome at least some of their fear

about taking a course in “research”

***

Rain-kissed Petunias – September 20, 2018

***

An apt quote from my horoscope on an unremarkable day a while ago:

“Research is what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing.” (Wernher von Braun, rocket scientist)

***

 

A Walk though My Neighborhood

Carol A. Hand

Somedays there are too many tasks
demanding decisions and immediate attention

Which one’s a priority and which ones get an extension?

Rather than agonizing over choosing
I decide it may be wiser to avoid choices that are confusing
grabbing my camera and going for a walk instead
a great way to clear my heart and my head

*

Looking northwest toward the ridge – it always looks so much smaller in photos
Walking east on 8th Street
Approaching Hortus Garden at the crossroads
Hortus Carden – blooming despite drought
Inside Hortus Garden

*

Even when it’s cloudy now with a slight chance of rain
hoping my foolishness will tempt fate again
encouraging clouds to share precious moisture as they hover
showering on my camera lens as I hasten to find cover

*

Interesting sights while heading back home
Marked for removal
Green Ash tree affected by the Emerald Ash Borer
Denfeld High School – almost home as it srpinkles

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*

Choosing to head home not wishing to be drenched
wondering later if retreating was wise
perhaps the earth’s thirst would have been quenched
instead I watched safely through my window
disappointed by rapidly clearing skies

***

Ah, who knows what life has in store

Be patient

Wait

Just one day more

Mow the lawn – postponed because it’s been too dry
concerned that cut plants would quickly fry

Then take little Pinto out for his mid-day stroll
As we’re leaving our yard thunder crackles and rolls
Sprinkles start as we walk down the street
Transforming the air – now moist and sweet
Half way home it begins to pour
Soaking us both before we reach our door
Both grateful in our own way
For the surprising storm we encountered today

*

Pinto looking pensive

*

Acknowledgement – A dear friend recently reminded me how important humor is in our lives, although he spells the word differently – “humour.” I had begun this silly poem and his comment inspired me to finish it. As synchronicity would have it, I had also just found an old video of Loretta LaRoche that made me laugh when I first saw it during a PBS (public television) fund-raiser. I’ve posted the video below. I hope it brings peace and healing laughter into your life, too.

Washing Dishes

Carol A. Hand

Dear Sherri
I doubt that you remember
Billings Montana in August
Air filled with smoke
from the fires burning
just beyond the ridge
But I think of you fondly
smiling
almost every time
I stand by the sink
doing dishes
I remember our laughter
in a bar after a long day
when you were among the few
to treat me like a friend
even though I carried the heavy
isolating distinction of keynote speaker
at the BIA human services conference
Others looked at us
our tears streaming as we laughed
while you recounted stories
about your nosy neighbors
who reported you for feeding deer
a nuisance to their sculpted yard
and your creativity and humor
watching their response to your latest prank
peeking with binoculars
through your kitchen window by the sink
to watch them watching you
through their binoculars
to surveil your latest visitors

 

Paper Maché Sheep – Microsoft WORD Clip Art

***

Life-sized sheep
you crafted out of paper maché
and placed in your yard
as if they were “grazing”
repeatedly moving them
when you knew the neighbors
weren’t watching
to add to the illusion
The authorities finally grew weary
of your neighbors’ fallacious complaints
and left you alone
to live as you wished
feeding wildlife you loved
I am sorry I lost track of you
after so many jobs and moves
but I will always be grateful to you
for bringing kindness and laughter
into my life
and forever brightening
the mundane task of washing dishes
as it did again this sunny morning
smiling as I remembered
Smiling Sun – Microsoft WORD Clip Art

***