Fishing The Coast, Oregon and Washington
MAY 2006

Jennie's Fishing Life

Happy May Day!
What a beautiful... I mean, absolutely gorgeous morning! You know, the older I get, the more thankful I am for Spring, in Oregon. Yes, I love the rain, the wind, the storms, the cold... because that all means steelhead, salmon, and sturgeon!!! But, there is nothing like feeling the warm rays of sunshine on 'me poor old bones when Spring hits and wipes those cold winter blues from the calendar!
The lapse of time when winter fishing stops, and spring time hits seems to stretch longer and longer. For me, it is measured in the time that the Kilchis river is closed. Man, those are long days! I mean, how many walks can you go on, without a rod in hand?
I look at the river closure time as a lesson in patience, a tool to hone my appreciation for the river. It is a text book laid out for me to broaden my knowledge of the river, the river bed, the creatures that exist there (besides fish!), and a slate to examine the yearly changes that occur. It's a valuable time, but sometimes, as in all learning, gets a bit tedious.
However, when something happens noteworthy, it's the rage around the dinner table!
Such as yesterday when a steelhead chased Kilchis! I kid you not! It was hilarious! I'd never seen this kind of aggressive behavior out of a steelhead buck! But, man, oh man, was this ever an aggressive buck!
We were watching a small group of steelhead working on a new redd, clear across the river. I held my hand on my forehead, to shade the bright sunshine.
Kilchis was a half foot deep in the water having a drink. He was no more than 4

 



Yes, you can catch Springers on Power Bait!
37 pound springers, too!

Muhahahahah

Go, Power Bait!

feet from shore in a small riffle, standing off my side. He had completed digging the most divine hole that a dog could ever dig! He was thirsty! That's hard work!
From across the riffle, the hen began her dance. You could see the flashing of her sides as she either dug her redd, or was actually in the process of dropping eggs. The motion caused splashing on the river surface and piqued both Kilchis and my attention. We were intently watching.
I began to make out a v in the water... and it was headed straight at me. It was like what they showed on those jaws movies.
A chill ran down my spine.
From out of nowhere, my jaw dropped and I gasped as I saw a large, badly beaten steelhead buck torpedo across the shallows, with a direct aim for Kilchis! I saw it first. I was up on a grassy knoll above Kilchis. Kilchis didn't notice the fish until it was speeding and just five feet from the tip of his water dripping nose! I was in such shock that I couldn't laugh, but believe me, now I can! I can hardly write this!
Kilchis nearly jumped out of his fur! I don't believe that either one of us have ever thought of a fish as a threat, before yesterday! That fish was ticked! He was after us, and with dire speed, he flashed towards my dog like a shark in attack mode! He swooped by with a near miss, and headed down the riffles! That fish must have been going 30 mph! Kilchis ran up and down the bank, barking, hair hackled straight up on his shoulders! I wasn't certain if he'd ever touch toe in that water, again! "There's mean things in there, Ma!"
In Kilchis' five years of life, he has come to know much English. A couple of those words are "fishing" and "fish". As he gets older, he's learning complete sentences. I've had many dogs, and most of them knew words, but never have I had one who could follow conversation and schedule like Kilchis can.
Every night after the dinner dishes are done, Kilchis expects a walk to the river. He stares at me, until it happens. Some nights, I'm just too tired. The other evening was one of those. I yelled down from my bedroom balcony with Kilchis close behind, "Andrew?" Andrew answered. "Will you please take Kilchis for a walk?" I turned around, and Kilchis was gone! I heard him barking anxiously at Andrew's door! Both Andrew and I broke out laughing. Kilchis knows every word!
While out on the river, if I say, "There's a fish! I got one, Kilch!" That means Mom has a fish on the line (again, and so what!) and that he should come over and politely wag his tail in appreciation... but that he should darn well stay clear away from my line, reel or rod! It isn't much fun for him if he can't dance on my rod, swim out and greet the fish, or get wrapped up in my line, so the words "there's a fish!" doesn't get half the attention that "Let's go fishing!" does. Now those words are to die for!
But, after our steelhead attack, yesterday, if we are on shore together, and I say, "There's a fish!" and point to the river, Kilchis looks, eagerly, and growls!
He knows now, that we have attack fish in the Kilchis river, and he needs to protect me from them! I wonder how this will go over, come salmon season? Yikes!
Well, it didn't freeze last night, as they predicted. When we heard the warning, we had a family meeting, got everyone together and protected all of the baby plants, outdoors. We had an assembly line from the garden to the garage, lining plants up where they'd be protected and warm.
Since we couldn't "move" the blueberries, we took large Hefty garbage bags and tied them loosely over their newly sprouted flowers and greens. They stand in rows, like big black blobs. I'll have to remove them, today.
And speaking of Kilchis's keen and unmatchable intelligence...
Last night during dinner, Kilchis went out on his own. He began to bark like all get out. It was a mean, aggressive bark that meant, "Go away! I'm senior dog, here, and I'm warning you!"
We tried to finish our dinner, but his incessant barking got me worried that our chickens might be under attack, so I finally got up from the table to see what was the matter. I nearly doubled over in laughter. He was 'challenging' the big black blobs in the garden! He must have thought they were those darn attack steelhead or burglars, or garden thieves or something! He was spooked!
I called for the rest of the family, and we all had a good laugh. It wasn't at all the reaction that Kilchis was looking for. He was trying to protect us, darnit! Alot of appreciation we showed! Embarrassed that we weren't thankful, he hung his head, and retreated from the enemy.
I guess it's time to go out to the river, now. I've got a bit of a cold, and what better to clear my head than to walk on the river?
I'd like to make a May basket or two, and remember fondly the days when we'd knock on strangers doors, and leave the baskets on their porch while we hid. What fun! What great memories!
Please say a prayer that we don't get eaten by the attack steelhead. That thing is really scary! I'm serious!
Take a gander at Stan's column, if you get a chance! I just put it up!
Please, have a very Happy May Day! Smile! It's Spring, and it's sunny!


May 2nd

Dear Ifish,
How do I log in to post a post on your discussion forum? Thank you!

Oh! My e mail!
Sometimes I feel overwhelmed.
Sometimes I have these wild and free fantasies that I should just go start my car and let it drive me somewhere far, far away... somewhere that it is warm where I can dig my toes in the sand on some tropical beach! Stop signs? What are those? Just go signs!
Sometimes I allow those fantasies to develop so wildly that I dream of endless travel.
Jennie at Ifish hits the road!
Runs away!

Columns written from Mazatlan, Greece, Ireland! Where is Jennie fishing, today? That would work, wouldn't it? Just Kilchis and Jennie on the road, fishing! That thought makes me smile! Maybe I'm on to something!
Would I ever have the courage or the abandoned to do something like that? I can only dream! I wish I were that person!
Sure enough the worries of life stop me. Where would I get my medication? What about my kids?
If only I could leave my computer behind, my kids, and even my toothbrush!
Sometimes I think that ifish is way too much for me and that someone else could do a much better job of it.
Sometimes I wish I were Dorothy of the Wizard of Oz, and with no choice at all, a tornado would lift up my house and take me away, without argument. Instead of witches on bicycles outside the window, though, can I please see fishes? TUNA?! Salmons?
Sometimes I feel like I need to just take care of me, and that life is short, and what am I doing worrying and working, when I should be celebrating life? There is so much out there that I might be missing!
Sometimes I spend time writing a "to do" list and by the time I'm done with it, I think that's far enough to do! I seem to review the list and wonder where to start. Then I glance outside and see the sun shining, and the flowers blooming, and the grass growing.
Sometimes I wonder what I am doing inside?
I want a job like the grass has. Just to grow, green and strong, with my roots reaching for water. That's hard enough. Isn't it?
I recall a time when my girlfriend was attending Reed College. It was Spring break, and she was headed for her Father's farm in Eastern Washington. She said she wanted to break free of her mind and do hard labor. Mindless, sweaty, dirty jobs.
I can relate!
Who has the job of pushing the sun into the sky? To clear the clouds away, to paint the sky blue? Who tilts the earth so that the river runs to the sea? Who holds the moon steady to shine on the meadow at night?
Those sound like good jobs to have.
Sometimes I feel as delicate as a butterfly, and someone knocked the powder off of my wings. The slightest puff of wind would blow me down.
If I were as small as a bird, could I lift off to fly? If I were a fish in the river, could I buck the current? Would I be the last wounded duck out of formation?--An elk in a herd... would I fall behind? There will be no fence jumping for this girl!
If I were the breakers on the sea, could I muster the current to create foam to roll off my waves? If I were the snow, could I build up to form drifts, or would I melt the instant I floated to the ground? I think I know, and I know that disappointment, also.
How I love snow drifts, and foam on the sea, and the wonder of watching elk fly high over fences, effortlessly!
Sometimes I look at my e mail, and I see a blur of ink. Questions that people write in asking me, again and again. In response, that vast and empty blue sky opens up and I find myself staring off into it, unable to respond.
Sometimes I'm void, blank, unable, on vacation... right here in my office chair. The ability to make any decision evades me.
Sometimes I want to join the chickens in their coop. Their mindless chatter and excitement over everything and nothing at all, attracts me.
Sometimes I want to sit barefoot in the sun on the curb at some 7-11 somewhere, and sip a slurpee. And then go get another one. A different flavor. I want to try them all.
And you know? I wish I could just give myself permission. There is an art and power in letting it all go.
My first instinct is to be ashamed of my inability. I keep hearing that song,
Why am I such a misfit? I am not just a nitwit.
You can't fire me I quit, since I don't fit in.
Why am I such a misfit? I am not just a nitwit.
Just because my nose glows, why don't I fit in?

Sometimes I'm just in dreamland, and I excuse myself, saying that I did enough yesterday. The day before, or all of last year.
Sometimes I feel the responsibility to end these writings with something profound and touching. Today, I search my brain and come up with nothing. That same blank as wide as the expanse of the blue sky that someone else painted.
And still I sit, staring off into that blank. Maybe it's a good day to compose music, paint a painting, create a new recipe. Why do I have to do something, though, in order to feel justified?
I wish I could just feel alright about nothing at all!
"Mom? Mom?" David's voice breaks through and I finally hear him.
"Huh?"
"Can you write me a note to excuse me for my doctor's appointment?"
I wrote the note, and handed it to him.
Then, it hit me. I had the greatest idea!
I wrote one for me, too! It excuses me today from anything and everything, including my conscience! No guilt and no work! I'm excused!
Feeling satisfied, I headed out to the porch to sit in the sun. I'm not going to help the grass grow. I'm not going to help the sun stay in the sky. I'm not going to write music, nor paint a darn thing, and I am clueless and guilt-free regarding what we are eating for dinner!
For all I care, we will have chicken scratch!
Now, regarding your question on how to fix your ifish problem?
Sometimes, you'll get a reply. Sometimes, not!

 

May 5th

There was an odd warm East wind blowing yesterday at the coast. It wasn't beach like, at all, and it made the feel of the day all the more apprehensive, to me.
Today, I have my six month check on the progress of my dissected aorta. I don't like the catscan. I don't like the shot. I don't like them pumping radiation into me at the speed of light. Sometimes it actually hurts, they force it in so fast, but other than that, it just feels invasive, and I feel like I should be encased in glass afterwards, and dropped into the ocean with all of the other contaminants.
I also don't like the waiting. The terrible, agonizing waits, shoulder to shoulder with tens of other people, who wonder and worry? I'll finally be called in to wait some more, while the doctors go over my results in another room. I sit, waiting, ear to the wall, trying to hear, trying to decode if they are speaking positively or negatively, or with warning and concern, or with normal doctor-speak in their voices.
Double that to worry that Andrew's tests might now show confirmable evidence that points to surgery. He'll be in another building this time, having his test at the very same time.
He's 18. An adult, now, so things will be different. Will his doctor still tell me the test results, or will I have to decode them through Andrew's teenage unhearing ears and most invincible, impenetrable precon-misceptions? :)
"Oh, I'll be fine, Mom! It just showed a little bitty change..." Argh.
Or-- maybe he has it just right. Maybe I should go back there, to that time in my life, too!
Maybe I should just wander outside after my tests, let the doctors consult, and let them call me if they think there is a problem?
I'll just answer back, "Oh, I'll be fine, doc!" and go dance on the Ellen show, or go fishing, or walk on the river and and 'don't worry, be happy'?
Regardless, that warm, East wind has stopped. Now there is a bleak gray sky overhead, and a darkish cast over the meadow. It eerily lights up the dense thousand colors of green. Hey! It looks radiated!
Off I go. I can't say that I'm not concerned. But, I don't feel as worried as I used to, over these tests. At least for myself. Now, I worry about Andrew more. I have to, you know. He worries not at all that I can tell, and someone has to take up that slack!
Sorry I haven't updated this in a while. Now you know why. I get oddly silent when I worry.

 

May 7th

No matter what the religion, no matter what the situation, I think the main reason that people do anything is for their happiness and peace of mind. Happiness is a rush, and everyone is searching for it. We search in stores, buying things we can't afford, reaching far and wide, trying to capture it in all the wrong places. It's so easy to find, too! It's right here in front of us, available to all!
We can help everyone find it, simply by infusing their life with love and kindness. A compliment, a hug, a nice thought.
People think they need a ton of money or vacations, or new toys to find happiness. So untrue!
It's that 'circle of love' that we hear so much about. It's very catching, you know. Just as catching and powerful is negative, and much more destructive. I choose the love one. How 'bout you?
I've been tracking ifish lately, looking for positive threads or positive thinkers. That's where you'll find me posting!!! I want whatever they are having!!!
If we all did this, even only the people on ifish, for instance, (or any group!) it's amazing the impact it can have! We could alter ifish into a thing that is a more consistent, really neat thing!!! And this could spread to real life, and your home life, and your work life, and.... Wow! It is amazing how much this can snowball!
Now, before you click off this thread as more of Jennie's slurpy sweet 'gag-me' nonsense, read on.
I try to take time each evening to find a couple positive threads, and join in the fun. I simply 'don't see' the negatives.
It's good for my soul, and it's good for others, too! (I hope!)
Also, there are many new members on ifish, and if we all simply found one or two, dropped them a note telling them we were glad they found ifish and welcome them, invite them fishing, or just to chat on ifish's chat, imagine what that might do for their day? (AND YOURS in return!)
So, join me in the positive infusion, and make someone's day! Something as simple as "Hey, I like your boat!" or, "If you need help posting a picture, I'd love to help you!" Or, here's one! Tell them your zipperlip!!! (No!!! I'm kidding! Don't go that far!!!)
Anything like that will help your day go better, and likewise, the other persons. (and the chain continues!) It's so simple and yet I forget and have to remind myself, at least weekly, daily, to keep it up.
You can practice here on the ifish board, but if you also apply this to your daily life, you'll be really rockin' snappy-happy!
Even if you just say something nice to a family member, or buy a co worker a coffee and doughnut for no reason... it can really lift two people's spirits!
So, make this promise with me..., just for one week, even! If you don't like it, don't do it, but just try it and see! If you are a manly-man, and don't want anyone to know you'd fall for this sap, don't comment, just DO IT!
Do you know that by being kind to someone, you could switch their life from anger, to peace? Do you realize that could stop a Father from hitting his son, or a wife from nagging their husband? Or simply anyone from fighting with one another? Just cuz of something YOU did or said? We can break that negative chain! That's powerful!
Remember,
" It only takes a spark, to get a fire going, and soon all those around can warm up in its glowing. That's how it is with God's love, once you've experienced it; you spread his love to everyone; you want to pass it on."
So, get out there! Pass it on!
Want your kids to be popular and have a happy life? Set this example of love and kindness. Have you ever met one of those people that every time they see you, they smile, remember you, and give you a compliment? Everyone wants to be around 'feel good' people like that, and they are probably the most popular people around. Everyone thinks it's all about looks, hair styles, clothes...NOT! These are not the tools to popularity!
So, set that example!
I love that song, "And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love, Yes they'll know we are Christians by our love..."
And it's so true! In the bank, at the store, you can always tell those people that have that inner light, and it's because, usually, (in my experience!) they have the promise of God's everlasting love!
So, get out there and spread it around. Will ya?
Join me? I have to remind myself weekly, daily, all the time!
So, will you lift me up, when I get down? I'll try to do the same for you!

People ask me, so I'll tell, but I don't want to focus on it:
My test didn't get taken, because they couldn't get the IV in my arm. They tried, several times, but my veins kept breaking. It was frustrating and a bloody painful mess, but I'm over it. Man, my arms swelled up! I just have to make another appointment and try again. I can't wait to get it over with! The waiting is the worst!
Andrew's aorta grew, but only 1-2 mm. It seems to be growing one or two mm a year. At that rate... well, we won't go there! They do valve sparing procedures (open heart surgery) when it gets to 45, usually. I really want him to get his done before it dissects. He'll have no artificial valve that way, and no coumadin. That would be so cool! It's grown from 30 to where it is now. Mine dissected at 44, even though it shouldn't have, by their estimation. Scary! Oh well, don't worry... be happy!
Dee Dee is very ill, and it's breaking my heart to watch her. Her back legs are really hurting. She went outside this morning, and couldn't get back up the stairs. We were in a real pickle, as Bill can't lift, and neither can I. Talk about heartbreaking...
Life is so full of sadness and worry, and yet we smile. Isn't that amazing?

May 9th

R.A.T.
Recreationists Against Thieves

This is an awesome site, and these folks are doing a great job to RATting out the rats!
Used to be that I would feel safe just about anywhere in the outdoors, provided there weren't any large cats roaming the area. Now, from what I hear, I need to hire police protection for my car, while I go.
Now, the 'Recreationists Against Thieves' are here to stomp out the problem.
They emphasize that you should ALWAYS call the police first. Do that! And then, use the database, listed on the page above. The police are swamped and often don't have the time or budget to put as much energy into protecting our wide open spaces like these folks do.... and you and I can be part of the solution.
I think that every ifisher should become a RAT. Can you imagine the impact if we all joined in to help protect what we love most? I'm going to ask if they will link back to our page, and we can be officially involved in the RAT program. I just really like the idea of each and every ifisher using the database to help fellow recreationists as well as law enforcement to focus in on problem locations, vehicles, and times of crime that will affect us.
Spread the word!
This, from the RAT pages.....

How to protect yourself:

"Oregon is blessed with some of the most widely used public spaces in the nation. With this also comes the threat to our personal property, and safety. We can all take simple, but effective steps in preventing ourselves from becoming victims. The most effective way to prevent loss of your property is to take control of your environment.

These simple steps will help prevent you from becoming a victim.

"Be aware of your environment. If you feel uneasy about the area you are parking in, don’t.
Never leave personal items in plain view in your vehicle. These items are easy targets for thieves.
Always lock your vehicle, and keep your windows rolled up.

Following these steps won’t prevent all property theft, but it will make it tougher for the thieves."
Let's join hands with this awesome group! This is the type of thing I had in mind, when forming ifish.net. Together, we can make a difference.
Many thanks to the RATS of the world for making it easier to make that difference!

May 10th

I love to dance. My family thinks I'm nuts.
Each morning I try to turn the music up and dance. I have found that my physical therapy goes alot smoother, and without so much objection, if I just let go of my better senses, and dance.
While I'm dancing, I stare out the window at a mountain wall of green trees, in a thousand colors that would make anyone dance.
Speaking of green, did you know that raindrops look like this? I took these the other day after a spring rain. There is nothing as exciting as fresh green against black slippery rocks on the river! And these things!


Click on the pic for a bigger one! Amazing!


Thousand colors of green... Click!

If I don't have the energy for that, I turn on something wild and classical and sit in my chair and conduct. (wildly!) Marches are wonderful for this! A little Souza goes a long way to a good day!
But, do you know that Rachmaninoff's 3rd is not for the weak at heart? Man, that is one long bugger! I'll tell you, by the time I finished that, yesterday, I was toast, both mentally and physically! (And those darn first violins wouldn't do as they were told!)
Sometimes I give in, and turn on something slower, and do my exercise movements to that. I combine a little yoga and stretching, and I do what I can.
I do what I have to. Everything from Chopin to Crosby Stills, Nash and Young... to the James Gang, or some hard driving funk!
You know, it is better to have loved and lost, then to have never loved at all. I found that out, at Itunes. Now, I'm an Itunes junkie. I find that songs that used to move me, still move me, literally!! There is nothing like the nostalgia of old love and music. Or, old music and love! ?
Yesterday I was talking with a gentleman about careers for my son, and he commented, "Yes, David. Creative careers are for people that must. People paint because they have to. "
Yes, and they play music because they have to. Either on the stereo, or on their instrument of choice.
I am driven to do many things. I have to dance, and I have to play music on the piano. I have to paint, too. I have to write. I have to fish. I have to garden, walk and run and laugh, and dance... but my body argues, vehemently.
You know, it's really a struggle, because my body doesn't think it wants to all these things. It hurts me physically to be this driven. It hurts to have desires. I feel trapped in a body that has a mind of it's own.
So, despite the cracking and pulling, I turn on the music and block my mind. I just let the music run me. Oh! Yesterday by noon, I was trash, and totally spent! I feel pretty good some mornings, and I so badly need to learn somehow to pace myself, but whoo hooo(!!!) does it ever feel good to just let loose! It's so hard to stop!
This morning, I am going fishing. I'm going fishing for the first time in nearly two months. If my rod tip takes a dive, or if I'm holding it and that bad salmon jerks me out of my seat, I'm going to play it, accordingly, with total abandon! Regardless of doctor's warnings, regardless of any fierce objection by my partner, or by my muscles, I'm going to dance! If only I'm so lucky, I'm going to dance with fishes!!!
After that, I have to go to the doctor. In fact, I should be going this morning, but you tell me. What sounds like more fun? Life is short. The doctor can wait. I'll call and tell him that I'm really sorry, but I simply have to dance.

"You haven't got anything to dance about until you're over thirty-five anyway." -Bert Balladine
"The people who do not dance are the dead."
~Jerry Rose of Dance Caravan

May 14th

Happy Mother's Day!

May, 1993. It was Spring, in Warrenton, Oregon and I lived in a small, modest home on Smith Lake.
I was asked about God by my youngest son, David. "What is so great about God?" He was not in school yet, and days were long, lazy and relaxed.
David came unto this world, a child with the confidence to do anything. He was bright, proud, and lavishly reinforced with Mom and Dad's praise.
I waited until Andrew came home on the kindergarten bus and took them both outside. I asked them to pick some flowers. Of course, in that age of innocence, a flower can be a weed. After all, what is the difference? A weed is but a misplaced flower!
I then placed all of their treasures from the outing on the kitchen table, along with every arts and crafts item we owned, which was plenty! There were paints, charcoal, pencils, brightly colored and pastel tissue and construction paper, tape, glitter, and glue.
I then told them that God had made these beautiful flowers and plants, and that I'd yet to find 'anyone' who could make them as beautiful. I asked them to try.
David dug in, confident that this was no big deal. Andrew, the meek, the mild, the wise, but winsome, sat, mouth half open, all knowing.
My Mother jokingly told me at one most difficult point, that all Mother's should just throw away their first born and try again.
Andrew began creating flowers, only to catch up with David's fury.
I left them alone, while they worked, silently.
When they were done, satisfied, I came to check on their work, and let them decide. Were they able? Their "flowers" were beautiful to a Mother's eye, but were they satisfied? I'll never know if the point was driven home, but I think it was.
Especially, for me.
It never ceases to tickle me, the seasonal displays at the local supermarket. Walk in the door at Fred Meyer's today, and you'll see their celebration of Spring! Barbecues! Brightly colored plastic tumblers to drink from with matching plates, all bursting with the colors of spring. Lounge chairs, lawn swings, all shouting sunshine! Sunshine!
The same thing for Fall and "Back to School", winter and "Christmas" in all of it's reds and greens and glittery expectations.
Everything pales in comparison to the changing seasons, so dramatically introduced on the Kilchis river.
Last night before the sun went down, I sat on a mound of grass, newly exposed by the receding river. I was breathless, half from the hike, but also amazed at our Father's celebration of Spring.
The water in front of me had no current. It was a sheet of glass, unmoving. It is God's most perfect canvas. Mirrored on it's surface was a myriad of greens that I couldn't escape.
"What a lovely picture!" I said out loud, in wonder.
Tiny purple flowers popped against lime and lacey mosses that climbed aimlessly over slippery black rocks in the water. Now, come on! Who put those there? I giggled. Around the rocks, the current moved just enough to mirror the purple and green into endless curls and swirls.
Spikes of long, sturdy-bladed grasses exploded like fireworks along and between big black rocks in a wall that climbed the opposite side of the river. Everything, perfectly mirrored, below. Wow. The more I looked, the more I was in envy.
Why can't we create things like this? Why don't we usually even notice the intricate beauty that surrounds us, each day?
My mind raced, thinking of the many times and different seasonal feelings that the river brings me.
The cold, frozen-fingered Fall mornings where the current rises and the river rages, and holds huge surprises of live Chinook salmon, when everything else appears dying, or dead! The blurry dance of gold, red, and brown leaves float from the sky from the slightest wind, flutter down and surround me in a shower of color! Now, that's magic!
And, oh... the season of silver! Dark gray skies of threatening snow where the whole world becomes a winter wonderland of white! ...and yet mystery of all mysteries, a bright and silvery steelhead cartwheels on the end of our line, flashing chrome like a flying fender reflecting light as it twirls! All of this, brought to you, naturally, from the glacial and viscous waters that flow thick and slushy in front of us.
And it is, truly, everywhere, surrounding us.
I have always been drawn to homes near water.
Some years later, I moved to a house that I could afford on my single income. Our home had floor to ceiling windows that overlooked Young's Bay from high on the South Slope of Astoria. Good enough, I thought. The house wasn't much, but if anything, I could see water. I needed that.
One evening at sunset, the sky turned an incredible display of color. Reds, purples, brilliant hues that are only reserved for the artist in heaven. Everything multiplied by reflecting the water, below.
I was busy, getting ready for an evening school event.
I can still see little David in my mind. He appeared so small, sitting with his hands wrapped around his knees, nose pressed up against those windows, staring out into the sky. It was truly breath taking, but I was distracted and hurried.
Out of his mouth came words that I'll never forget.
"Mommy, God has such beautiful color crayons!"
And now, living on the Kilchis river, I'm the Mother of two very tall and sometimes 'removed' teenagers.
Andrew moved to the city. Something he has always wanted to do.
He lasted about... oh, four months, before he returned home. His room overlooks the river, and he has by far, the best view in the house.
I walked into his room, and talked to him last night about his future plans. Still wanting for the city lights? The room was gathering dusk. His windows were wide open, and the sound of the softly flowing river filled the open space. For once, his pounding rock music was off.
He looked out the window and said to me, "Oh, I don't know, Mom. It's pretty nice, here."
To appreciate nature and all the beauty that surrounds us is by far enough for me to feel that I've done my job as a Mother.
I am satisfied... and I'm darn glad I never threw my first born, away. Mom's aren't wrong about many things, but she was wrong on that count.
Happy Mother's Day, and I wish you all the brightest crayons in the box!

May 15th
Where's Becky?

Bill, (brother) John, Mom and Becky

Oh! Little Becky! She is a Bichon Frise. She is old, tired, but a very loved friend of Bill's Mother. She is blind. She is deaf. She is ill, and she is lost. You'd think she would be lost just existing in her silent and dark world. But this time, she is really lost.
Dogs often mirror their loved ones health, and sometimes, the other way around.
No one can find her. Poor old girl. She just vanished! It has come time where everyone can't help but think it is time to help end her life.
John, Bill's brother, however, is adamant that she is still enjoying part of it, and heartily refused to listen to the subject. We didn't fight him.
You see, Becky is very loved by all.
She is Mom's companion. A dog that curls up on Mom's bed and refuses to leave. Lately, though, Becky hasn't the balance to stay atop Mom's bed so well. She spends much of her day, walking in circles, obviously disoriented. It's absolutely heart wrenching.
She gets lost behind the couch or behind a doorway, and we can hear her bumping up against walls, trying to free herself.
Dogs complain so little, and are such devoted friends.
My Mother died of cancer 10 years ago.
I'll never forget her constant canine companion.
She was our family springer, but when all of the kids moved out and had lives of our own, Katy became Mom's best friend. They gardened, cuddled together at night, woke early together in the morning, and spent most of their time together.
As my Mother grew more and more ill, so did Katy. She would curl up on her bed and stay there 'round the clock during my Mother's last days. She'd rarely get up and leave, and only when she needed to eat or relieve herself.
When Mom's last breath came, Katy jumped off of the bed, walked outside and, well, she vomited. Now, you tell me dogs don't "know". They do. Like every member of our family, Katy was never the same. We were all lost without my Mother.
I went to visit Bill's Mom a couple weeks back. Admittedly, I had been avoiding this. Knowing full well things were going downhill, I cautiously walked into the doorway. Immediately it hit me. The smell, the feel, the entire surroundings took me back to my Mother's last days. I nearly passed out, it was so emotionally overwhelming. Things were not healthy there.
All of Bill's Mother's things were in one place, rather than scattered about the house as things were in better, more life-filled days.
Yesterday, Bill called in a panic. "Becky is lost! We can't find her anywhere!" Oh, great. NOT what Bill needs, right now! Things have just been a swirl of stress, lately!
They had searched high and low. There was a chance Becky could have made it outside, but only a small one. Becky can't see to turn corners, make it down hallways, etc. Still, (and what a scary thought) there is the pool. The pool hasn't been used in recent years, and is now a duck pond. Bill raked the bottom of the pool as best as he could, and thankfully, didn't find her. It's full of leaves, though, and is a dark, murky green.
There are other hazards. Bill's home is in a thick forest in Lake Oswego. There are coyotes and hawks. Becky is so frail and helpless.
Hours past, and still no Becky. They checked the same places, half a dozen times.
Restless and tired, Bill finally slept.
I'm now waiting for a call. I so hope they found little Becky. Bill's Mom would be lost without her.
I have several medical appointments, this week. So many tests to be done! I'm especially nervous about one of my legs. I'm having trouble walking again. My foot is cold, heavy feeling, and I can't feel a pulse in my right leg. Please, tell me that it's nothing, and everything is fine! I had that stent put in to fix this! I am so hopeful that it isn't scarred over and might need to be redone? Oh, man that was painful!
Anyhow.... that, and an eye exam. I haven't been to an eye doctor in what? Four years? I have no contacts. My old ones don't fit, and I am basically. well, legally blind without them! Then, I have to try to get that cat scan on my aorta. I have to finish that!! Part of me wants to ignore, avoid, forget about my aorta scan, and all medical stuff!
Part of me knows that I have to follow through for my family, and my dog!
But first, Dear Father.... Help us to find Becky. I know with absolute fact that I could not exist without my best friend, Kilchis. Bill's Mom needs Becky. Bill's brother needs Becky. We all need Becky, to hold us together.
And Lord? Father? So many things, lately. Help me to retain my spirit. Help this not to become a burden on me. Help me to always have hope, and joy, and my childlike excitement. Help me to mirror Kilchis' wiggly enthusiasm for life!
I'm leaving this morning, to help them search. Guide me safely across the coastal mountain pass, Lord, and lead us to her!
Thank you for everything, Lord. The spring flowers, the warmth, and thank you for family. Most of all, Lord, thank you for my best friend, Kilchis.
You have promised me that you will not give us more stress than we can handle. I am holding You to that promise, Lord!
Amen
~~~
OK. I'm off, and I will update you! May all of you reach down and give your beloved canine friend a huge hug. I'll do the same. Here, Kilchy!

May 19th

The Big Ka-TUNA!
Mark Charlton, LIVE!

Everyone is going fishing! In fact, everyone with a boat that will handle the salt have caught the frenzy!. It's halibut season!
If you don't have the boat to go, call one of the ifish charters! They are all going!

Tackle Time Bait and Charter
Warrenton Oregon
Charlton Charters
Warrenton Oregon
Tiki Charters
Astoria Oregon
Nalu Charters
Out of Depoe Bay!


Everyone's kitchen smells of at least one fish and chips session! Mine does!
The other day, I walked, stocking footed across my lawn to let our chickens out, and Mike, of Nalu Charters drove in the driveway!
What a surprise!
He had driven all the way up Kilchis river road, just to drop off some halibut on opening day! I can't thank you enough, Mike!
We deep fried some, but man, oh man... the real treat was the night he delivered it. We simply popped it in the bbq basket, and put it on the Traeger with just a little salt and pepper. It was so good, just hot off the grill!
Becky is home! Becky is home!
None of us could believe those words, when the caretaker called us. He had been down in the woods, and he heard her collar bell!
Out of their back door in Lake Oswego is a short hill of lawn, and then a thick stand of old growth trees. The lawn and forest slant downhill, to a creek.. I can just see poor little Becky, with forward momentum, half walking, half tripping down, down, down!! She is so old and weak that once she got started, I'd doubt she would have the energy to stop.
Anyhow, her nose was scratched up from bumping into things, she is dehydrated, but she is alive. She was gone in very hot weather for four days. Miracle of all miracles! I needed that! Off to the vets, she goes. Please wish her well!
This will be a busy weekend. The Bounty of the Bay tournament is tomorrow. The festivities start tonight. I can't wait to see everyone!
Every single day except this one, I have visited a doctor of one sort or another. Please, if you are a doctor, and you are attending the tournament, stay clear of me!
No offense, I've just had my fill!
I have so many bandtail pigeons in my lawn that it is getting near nuisance level. If I called the pound, would they please come pick up a basket of bandtails?


Basket of Bandtails

Also, the evening grosbeaks, which I have been referring to as the 'clownfish of the trees', are keeping me entertained, constantly. They are so full of character!


American Goldfinch and Grosbeak

Who needs television? I have birds, galore!
Well, off I go. Plenty to do today to catch up from my week of medical poking and probing.
I hope you have a wonderful weekend full of fishing and fun!

May 21st


Bob Rees and Bill Monroe
go over some notes,
critical to the fun and success
of Bounty on the Bay!

The Third Annual Bounty on the Bay Tournament has come to a close! A great time was had by all! I've put together a web page with the Awards Banquet pictures. You can find it, by clicking here.
The fishing was great, the food was awesome and the company was divine!
On Friday night, we joined for an informal spaghetti dinner, while people learned who they were fishing with and where.
On Saturday, most of the fishers got up before dawn and loaded their boats for a day on the bay.
While many ifishers headed out to the big blue for their halibut, the upper and lower bay filled with boats looking for the most prized of all salmon, the coastal spring chinook. These fish are by far superior in taste to Fall salmon and I personally feel they are much better than Portland area springers. They are so fresh and their meat is deep red and extremely oily. They don't spawn until late summer, so barring any fins that would label it a wild fish, any hatchery spring chinook caught in the bay will be a keeper at this time of year.
There were several fish caught. I'm still waiting to hear the total, as I couldn't stay long, last night. I'll report it, when I find out!
Anyhow, check in was at 3:00 PM. I heard that a woman caught the "biggest fish" award. Figures, doesn't it? I love it when that happens!!!
We gathered for cocktails and seafood hors'doeuvres at 5:00 PM. Oh, man what a feast! They had steamers, shrimp cocktails, oysters both cooked and not. The cooked oysters were my favorite. As far as I can tell, this is how they were made. Try this! Cook your oysters on the grill and then add butter, onions, bacon bits, cheese and a dab of chili sauce over the top. ...to die for!
Anyhow, it was just a great time! What a wonderful group of fishers we have in Oregon. Everyone I saw last night, totally dedicated to the sport and our environment in every way!
I had so much fun visiting with everyone. I think this has got to be my favorite tournament. (Do I always say that?!)


May 22nd

Oh, thank you, Father!
I spent the weekend on and off in prayer over things that are happening in the Angler's Chapel. How does one take 10 thousand people and try to fit them all in the same chapel? Not an easy task! If I were totally impartial, it would be easier. Thing is, I'm not! I love my God, and that love is based totally on Biblical principals.
My Father is working in me, and has filled me with peace and hope and happiness, this morning! Oh, that's such a welcome feeling! I'm so ready for this!
Isn't it amazing when you are just at wit's end, and then God wraps you in His arms and makes it all better? And here I thought I needed my Mother's lap... I mean, I still do, but hey! This is good! This is very good!
I fell asleep last night in total peace. The rain was falling softly on a canopy of fully clothed trees. I adore that sound. Closing my eyes, I imagined one single rain drop falling from a fresh green leaf and landing softly, like a wet kiss on my cheek as I drifted off to sleep.
The rising river adds to this content with a melodious alto song. A cello quartet! There is nothing like a full Spring rain. It's so cleansing, pure, and soft sounding. The river plays a lullaby of new life, of birth, of everything clean and green!
I woke, totally refreshed. Lord, help me to sustain my patience and my renewed energy. Help me to pace myself so that I don't burn out, too quickly!
It's a week of catch up for me. Watch for new contests, a new sponsor, and a new page for the Salty Dogs. It isn't finished, but you can see the idea, here! The idea is to allow more sponsors, at a very reasonable price that can advertise only on the salty dog page. However, they get to have their web site posted in their signature so that if they post elsewhere, folks know that they support the Salty Dogs, thus supporting ifish.net!
If you are a Salty Dog, and have a product you would like to share, you may write to me regarding adding your name to this page! People who are good candidates for this advertising page will be 'dogs' who post and contribute to the salty dogs knowledge base.
Hey! Here is your new sponsor! Welcome to ifish McCulloch Marine LLC, who introduces a new product for all of you TUNA! addicts! Those Salty Dogs are so wild about TUNA! that they insist it be referred to in all caps, and with an exclamation point. So, if you want those TUNA! to flock to your ship, Mark has got the right stuff. Check him out and welcome him to ifish! Finally, the secret is out! He just put up this quicky web site until his final web site is finished. This is all we need for now. Just get me those lures!

May 23rd

This morning my phone rang, at five or around;
I slid 'cross the floor in my socks and fell down.
My coffee flew from my cup to the air
and when it came down, it woke up my hair!
I answered it promptly despite a sore knee.
"Hello! Is this Jennie?"
"Well, yes, it is me."
"Hellooo there, and how is the river, my dear?"
The voice loud-shrill opera, in a tone splitting my ear.
"The water is dropping, the steelhead aren't there!
The river is closed for fishing,
So why should you care?"
I snapped back that answer, she hung up the phone.
I 'spose I woulda too, after hearing that tone.
And so starts my morning, as I prepared for a trip
I was supposed to go fishing!
Instead I bruised my hip.
After speaking with Bill, He further shared his woe-
He had gotten out of bed, and badly stubbed his toe.
His motor won't start and his chest screamed a pain,
and looking outside said, "It's pouring down rain!"

So I settled down to work, knowing it'd be best to keep from hooks,
I sat down at my computer.
Man, I should have stuck with books!

My e mail stuck like pancakes! It wouldn't go in or out!
I called for tech support, and they were busy for five hours... about!

LOL... I can't finish, I've got writer's block!
I've got more work to do, according to my clock.
I'll finish this silly ditty, some day.
But let me just tell you,
I'd rather be fishing on the bay!

May 24th

When I'm stressed,
When I need some rest,
I write in rhymes
during nervous times.

When I go to the doc's,
I tend to watch the clock
Time passes so slow
When the diagnosis isn't known.

Is my aorta unchanged?
Is it in, or out of range?
Can they put pokes in my arm?
Without causing more harm?

ACH! OK, I'll talk normal.

I'm leaving for aortic tests, again. Time for another try at a Cat Scan. I really am a bit nervous.
I'm sure everything will be fine. Right?
Last time, my arms both blew up like balloons.
My veins look great, so the nurses are totally confident that they can thread the IV catheter, just as simple as pie! But then my veins blow out and the medicine just goes in my arm. It hurts, darnit! Talk about feeling delicate!
I used to tell them that I was a difficult "thread" and that it took 20 nurses one time to get it done. Want to see the fear of God on someone's face?
I decided that wasn't a good idea, so then I told them nothing.
I decided that wasn't a good idea, either! I don't know what to tell them! I don't want to make the poor nurse nervous, but I do want them to know that it's not easy. But, sometimes it is easy! It's just the luck of the draw, I guess! (Pun intended)
Enough of that. Do you know that trout season is open this weekend? Whoooo ha! My river! It's going to be open for fishing!
Kilchis, my dog, is going to go wild the first time I grab for my rod, on the wall. He knows that when I grab my rod, we spend much more time on the river, than if we just go for silly walks.
Anyhow, I can't wait!
So, I'm just going to look forward to that, and leave all else behind me. Or before me. Or...
OK, now...
How many minutes till I leave for my test?
How many hours till this girl can rest?
The waiting is terror, but the poking is worse!
But, soon I'll be fishing,
and that's when life's BEST!

May 26th


On the fly


Francis singing about her friends

Francis is my bud. She comes back each year. I can tell by her markings. I'd love to tag her little feeties just to be sure, but I better not!
She sits on her little feeding perch by me while I work. She talks to me when none of the other birds are singing. She flies straight to my window and faces me, in flight as if to say, "Dontcha think the feeder should be cleaned and refilled? I have company coming!"
Oh my gosh! I have my window open right now, and a bold black headed grosbeak just came and sat on the sill, looking in. Not a foot from me. Spooked me! Spooked him, too! He's gone!
It's just pouring down rain. We were going to go fishing this morning, but with these thunderstorms and periodic wind bursts, it's just as well we not. I'll never forget a huge burst of wind that came upon us one Spring day and moved us clear across the bay! We'll just wait... wait... wait till the wind is calm!
(I think it's really supposed to be "Wait until the moon is full!" according to my childhood storybook, but hey! I can change that as it's needed!
I can't wait until tomorrow! Trout season is open! Trout season opener is such a hoot to look forward to, each year. Not only for the fishing, but for Kilchis! My dog Kilchis just goes nuts! I get up in the morning on opening day, and after months of not fishing, I put on my vest. Now, that deserves a tail wag, right there, but then... when I reach high up on the garage shelf for my fly rod, Kilchis absolutely explodes into a flying fur ball! He gets SO excited! "Fishing! OM Gosh! Fishing!"
He takes off into the driveway and does those wilder doggy circles, sometimes so fast that he loses his grip and goes down on his side and skids as fast as he was circling!
I laugh out loud! What a silly dog!
"FISHING! Mom's going fishing!"He seems to say.
He bow-wows and woo-woo-woos until the coyotes answer, telling him to shush up! It's morning, out there, you silly dog! Time for rest!
Well, can you blame him? Day after boring day of short walks on the river grows tedious for a 'wilders' dog, you know. I mean, sure. Those leisurely walks pass for 'exercise', but fishing? Oh! Wonderful of all wonderful things to do!
If you ask Kilchis, he'll tell you.

Fishing is the reason we live on the Kilchis river, and why I am named after it. Fishing is why I exist. When my Mom reaches up to grab that stick off the wall, well, I nearly pass out! That means we can stay for a cast or two, moving from good digging spot, to good digging spot on the bank. I can roll in mud, eat it, get sticks caught in my fur!
Oh, and I do make wonderfully dangerous tripping holes to watch my Mom fall into! You'd think she'd watch her step, but no! She forgets about those holes, every time! I am the mighty hunter of the family, and even humans I can trap! I can't stop laughing! I have the energy to dig all day long!
Oh! My Mom is nuts! She gets all excited when she fishes! She shouts and yells and joins in my good times! It's the one time I think she matches my enthusiasm for life! She says things like "I got one, Kilchy!" and "Kilchis! Another one!!!" and "Kilchis a FISH!" What else is she after?
She giggles with me as I dig more holes. Her entire spirit comes alive, just like mine is on a regular basis. How come humans can't be this way all the time? Life is wonderful, and I'm hear to tell you! Come on! Let's do some circles!
But sometimes she gets cranky, even when fishing! She'll curse at me, and I don't know why. So what if I run across the river where she is casting?
Besides, I simply must go after those cormorants and chase those dippers from one end and back again!
I'm just darn sure that those dippers live at our home just to tease me. It's as if they do nothing all day long, but look forward to my arrival. Mom just laughs at me, and tells me I'm not going to catch one. I'll show her! I'm going to get one of those flying menaces! I'll keep our river safe and free from pests! I will! Does she even know how many smolts those cormorants eat?
When she does catch something, it's really fun to go see what it is she's doing. Why does she get so upset if I wrap myself in her fly line? As if it's her problem!

Anyhow, he speaks the truth. Enough of Kilchis. Kilchis has a grand time during fishing season, and I'm looking forward to his excitement nearly as much as mine.
The countdown is on! 20 hours till trout season, and Kilchis and I can't wait!
Join us in some circles?

May 26th


On the fly


Francis singing about her friends

Francis is my bud. She comes back each year. I can tell by her markings. I'd love to tag her little feeties just to be sure, but I better not!
She sits on her little feeding perch by me while I work. She talks to me when none of the other birds are singing. She flies straight to my window and faces me, in flight as if to say, "Dontcha think the feeder should be cleaned and refilled? I have company coming!"
Oh my gosh! I have my window open right now, and a bold black headed grosbeak just came and sat on the sill, looking in. Not a foot from me. Spooked me!

May 27th

What do you mean, "Ifish was down!" No way! Didn't happen. Are you nuts?

May 27th

When I open the door in the morning to let the dogs out, I always have to stop to breathe and wonder.
The entire countryside! Covering the hills and valleys and canyons are heavy green with long, tall grasses, full leaves on the trees, and heady blossoms with rich fragrances!
It is so richly dense that there is just a bit-a-little space in between for you and I to breathe.
It's forgiving for all of the damage caused. It covers up a million scars on the earth, and strives to make it perfect, again.
Last night before bed, I sat outside. It would be considered dark, if you were to be inside, but outside, there was yet a dim light. It was warm. Tiny raindrops spit from the sky. It felt just fine on my bare legs.
I sipped my tea and listened.
The otherwise noisy nursery of spring was hushed, except for a few baby birds sassing about the close of the day. They were trying out their new voices, and arguing about placement in the nest.
It came to me as a surprise, and with a startled intake of breath I realized that all of this new growth; the flora and the fauna-- makes up God's nest for all of the small new creatures that are born!
Tall grasses for baby deer, rabbits, chipmunks, and other four legged critters, and large, lush leaves to hide those baby birds from predators!
How perfect to grow all of this new greenery to hide the new baby birds and animals!
Along with that, the river current slows to form the ideal habitat for baby fish, crawdads and other aquatic life!
What a perfectly planned earth! How dare humans ever try to challenge it! Change it! Rearrange it!
Spring! -- and all of the new life it brings. That gives me new hope, and a fresh start each morning.
Sometimes I'm slow to realize these things, but that's a good thing for me, because my new discoveries give me a fresh start, as I grow older.
Spring inspires me.

May 28th

Please take a moment to read "Don't Guess about your Guide" by Stan Fagerstrom. It's a great grouping of articles that are very helpful, if you'd like to hire a guide!
You can find the rest of the series archived here.

Now, on with a couple pictures...



Reach out and touch 'some hum'!

OK. Guess what this is...

Want some new wallpaper?
Click for the big one!

Man, that was no fun, yesterday being down almost all day! I still haven't heard what might have happened. We have guesses, but no one knows for sure.
Anyhow, we were down. It involved so many people trying to fix it that I was dizzy trying to keep up! It's really odd to think I haven't met half of the people who try to maintain ifish. I know them, though, from working with them. I have visions in my head what they might look like, but no idea, for sure! One of them lives in La Grande. The other in... Germany! He's our MySQL database tech. They are both so nice, and I'm so thankful for both of them!
We are having a hummingbird attack! I was all settled into the summer, thinking we'd only have a couple of them. Not! My hummingbird feeder now needs filling (2 cups!) twice a day! They just swarm like little light saber fighters! If you stand next to the feeder with something red on, watch out! Zzzzzzroom! Zzzzzzzzzburn! They swoop past your ears, barely skimming you at light speed!
If a hummingbird were any larger, they'd be darn dangerous! Such vicious little things and so beautiful! The charter internet guy came the other day, and was absolutely taken by them. He stood there at my window for so long, in utter astonishment. He was wearing a yellow and orange striped safety vest. Oh, did the hummies like that! Poor kid was getting swarmed! I had visions of nothing but his skeleton left, draped with his vest!
I told him about holding his finger out, and they'll light upon it. He said, "No way!" and began to hold it up. Sure enough! They landed very close to his finger. I loved the fascination that he held for them. I have that, too! I told him to come on in and look out the back window! I told him about the black headed grosbeak. "What is it called? Uglybeak?" He was impressed. That's for sure, but he wanted back at those hummingbirds!
I told him I had to get back to work. His van was running, but he couldn't resist. He stood by my hummy feeder for many more minutes, just fascinated by them.
I can relate!

May 29th

Stan Fagerstrom's
"My Little Wartime Bible"


Click pic for large

I'm really enjoying my hummingbirds. It's the "peak of the run" as we joke, around here. At any one time, they'll be at least 10 zooming around the feeder. Last night I was flabbergasted that they had gone through another four cups of feed by dinner time. (That's in one day!) and I was too tired to make new food. Earlier this year I bought some instant feed, just for lazy times like this. I made it and began unhooking the feeder to refill. Before I could even tip it over to hang it, I had dozens of hummies humming all around my head, sitting on the feeder, on my shoulders! I was covered! I was under attack! I held the feeder right side up, and held it while the hummies fed from my hands. That will be an experience I'll not forget!
We have two new places to stay in Nehalem!
Nehalem Nirvana Fish, crab, clam, kayak, soak in a hot tub, hike the beach and jetty! Family fun!
Ripple Run Resort LLC Unique floating accommodations on The Nehalem River!
That will be great, as my family is having a golf tournament for Father's Day in Manzanita. I can't wait! I don't play, but we always have a picnic afterwards, and I'm really good at that part!
I think I'll try for a Tillamook Bay salmon, today. Hope you have a very relaxing and memorial Memorial Day.

 

May 31st

What a heartbreaking tune! I'm listening to Carly Simon singing "Spring is Here." It's such a sultry, mournful heart breaking tune! And what a beautiful voice to fit the melody!
It is the season of expectation for me, and my heart is dancing! Quite contrary to the lyrics, "Spring is here, why doesn't my heart go dancing?"
Those lyrics imprint on my brain, but are so contrary to how I feel! Everything is dancing all around me!
Poor Ms. C. Simon! She needs a garden!
Every day I can't wait to check on things. What has sprouted? What has bloomed? Has the fruit set? Which flowers have turned to berries? Which buds have burst into bloom? Does the tree hold any asian pears? Apples? Oh! Look at the tiny sprouts, all standing in a row!
I think we all need that expectation! How I miss it, in the winter time!
This morning I expected to see my small herd of hummingbirds, but oddly, they are absent. I just have two or three intermittent feeding hummies. Where have they gone? Oh well! There is so much more life surrounding me! Grosbeak! American Goldfinch! Tree swallows! So much life! So much, I can't count! I truly do love Springtime.
The intense feeling of expectation starts in women, I believe, with their first pregnancy. It's an exciting and apprehensive period of wonder! Of holding in you something that is creation, that will be born, finally, but never knowing exactly when!
No one can have, nor would we want that feeling all of the time. (Eh hem!) so, all of us new Mother's of the world unite! Our needs for new life and birth are ever present in the Springtime by planting a garden!
My freesias! They are so close to bloom!! I haven't checked them this morning, but for days, now, I've been watching the tightly wrapped green blooms, waiting for them to "hatch". I want to know what color they are! I'm always so excited! Like a child, I want to peel back the covers and look inside! Sometimes when I plant seeds, I just can't wait, and will take a tiny pin to dig in the dirt to see what the heck is taking so long! Then, I find a tiny seed with roots, and wonder if I've killed it. Darn! It was there, all along. Life! Creation! What a surprise, even though I knew it was there! And I personally made it happen! I love that!
The same thing happens when I decide to let one of my hens lay on her eggs. I just can't wait for them to hatch! I love sharing in that expectation!
Right now I have tiny little lettuces, all standing in a row. They don't look like lettuce yet, but I can't wait till they do! I love it when they grow big enough to thin them, and I make a salad out of those tiny thinnings. Oh! That's so good! Add a couple nasturtiums for color and you have a dazzling display on your dinner plate!
I have a tiny tomato on one of my plants! It's so cute! I take such good care of it, too!
There are tiny strawberries on my new plants, and one little flower on my raspberries! This year I will have buckets of berries of all kinds! Look out, pie crusts!!
Bill and I built a deer proof fence around the berry garden. Last year, I waited day by day so that I could pick them at their peak ripeness. I was so upset when the deer beat me by one day! NOT THIS YEAR!!! Those are my berries! Yes, the deer are cute, but they can have the salmon berries, thank you very much!
Anyhow, I have rewritten Carly's song for her. She's probably about my age. It's much more hopeful, I think.
~~
Spring is here! Oh! How I love those pansies!
Spring is here! Oh! How my freesias are fancy!
~ can't sleep in, so to the hose, it leads me~
Wake up! Oh! My babies need me!
Spring is here! Oh how new buds delight me!
Sprouts appear! Oh! How those slugs incite me!
Maybe it’s because those green things need me!
Spring is here, I hear!
~~~
Once a mother, always a Mother! And, oh! I have so many, many children, now!

 

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