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The Road to Rivendell

Today’s SoCS prompt is to use a word ending in sty. First I thought of the word, fantasy, but that doesn’t work. I had to look up words that end in sty. The first one I liked was, “misty.” That lead me to the Misty Mountains and this story….

What have I gotten myself into? Elya wondered if she should just go back the way she came. But she couldn’t take another day, another night, at the Prancing Pony. She was too old to be working in a pub. If only her husband Dane were still alive, she would never have had to take that job. Her horse seemed to keep plodding along as if knowing something better lay ahead.

Elya had heard stories about a beautiful place called Rivendell. It was east of Bree, somewhere near the misty mountains. It sounded magical, a place with elves. She knew she never really belonged in Bree. If they really knew her mind, they would think her a witch. But she was just different. Swallowing with nothing to swallow, she let her horse lead the way. She had come to trust her beast and companion over the years. Would there be monsters along the road? Would they be there by nightfall? She nudged her friend further.

As darkness fell, she fought back the panic and found a place off the main road, almost a hideaway, under a willow tree for them to stop for the night. She ate the last of her bread and found cool water from a stream, then hummed quietly to herself needing to sleep, but too afraid. Somehow she drifted off.

The sunlight woke her and she gave thanks that she had not perished at some strange sword. She had kept the knife close and was glad she didn’t need it. Onward they went, eastward until they found a path off the road late in the afternoon. She didn’t know why she took it, something told her it was the way. After a time, a view opened up. The misty mountains were to her right. The air smelled different. The path had seemed to disappear, but there was something, a beam of light, directing her left. Just north of the mountains, the path became more twisty with rises and falls. She could barely see a path.

Elya dismounted and walked leading her horse. The sun was behind her now. She stumbled, then stood and took a breath. Light shown through the trees ahead. A few more steps, then she saw it, bathed in golden light. Rivendell! It had to be! Below her was a stream, and across the stream, paths that led up the hills to the beautiful castle doorways set among the waterfalls.

Would they accept her? Would they understand how much she longed to belong in a place of beauty and peace? She patted her horse and headed down to cross the stream.

~~~

You’ve probably heard “Misty Mountains Cold” droned by the dwarves in The Hobbit. Here’s an instrumental version on an ocarina:

~~~

For more info on Stream of Consciousness Saturday, visit our host, Linda Hill at:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS Feb. 27, 2021 | (lindaghill.com)


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Thursday Tree Love: Waiting for Spring

“In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.”

― Albert Camus

This tree caught my attention on a recent walk to the little park near our home. I think this is an oak tree. In the summertime, I don’t think I would be as likely to notice her interesting trunk features or the clumps of mistletoe in the upper branches.

Waiting for Spring

~

Thursday Tree Love is hosted on the second and fourth Thursday of each month by Parul Thakur.

For more tree love, visit:

#ThursdayTreeLove – 104 – happiness and food


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One-Liner Wednesday: Beware of Artists

I might have shared this before, but when I saw Linda’s One-Liner Wednesday topic of art, I couldn’t resist. Not that we have to stick to a topic. I just like the idea of being “dangerous” through art and mixing with all classes. I have seen this quote attributed to Queen Victoria.

For more one-liners and guidelines, visit Linda Hill at:

One-Liner Wednesday – Art | (lindaghill.com)


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Good News Tuesday for Feb. 23, 2021: Shelter from the Storm, A Good Year for Rhinos, Rosalyn’s Lullaby, and a Grubhub Grant Winner/Dog Rescuer

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

Texas Furniture Store Provides Shelter from the Storm

After a severe winter storm in Texas left many people without electricity and heat, Gallery Furniture’s owner, Jim McIngvale, opened two of his furniture stores as shelters. “Mattress Mack,” as he is known, had previously opened his store as a shelter during Hurricanes Katrina and Harvey. For details, including stories of people who took shelter, you can read this article from the ABC 11.

Sea Turtles Rescued from Paralyzing Cold

In a related story, thousands of sea turtles rescued from paralyzing cold stuns are sheltered in a Texas convention center.

No Rhinos were Poached in Kenya in 2020

For the first time in 21 years, Kenyan Wildlife Service reported zero poaching of rhinos in the year 2020. Fighting poverty, tougher policing, and travel restrictions were contributing factors. Here’s more from the Good news Network.

Roslyn’s Lullaby from the UK

Rosalyn, who lives in the US, was having a terrible time trying to sleep. She was even having nightmares. Her father, a music teacher, reached out to a British men’s choir who created and sang a special lullaby for Rosalyn and her sister Evelyn. I found this story on The Good News Network. If you’re having trouble sleeping, you might try this song with its deep, rich harmonies..

Homeless Driver Who Rescues Dogs Gets a $10,000 Grubhub Grant

The food delivery company, Grubhub, went looking for drivers who make a difference. Destiny Powers who lives in her van and rescues dogs between deliveries was one of 20 Grubhub employees to receive grants. You can learn more about Destiny here.

Plus, here’s Destiny’s grant application video:

Got good news?

Please share in the comments!


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SoCS: Nerves ~ Correlation is not Cause ~ Peace ~ Dreams ~ and the Wizard of Oz

The prompt: Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “nerve.” Use it any way you’d like. Have fun!

The first thing that popped into my head was the expression, “You’re about to get on my last nerve.” It isn’t exactly logical, but it’s fun to say. One thing that gets on my nerves, is when someone posts something that suggests a correlation is a cause, like the meme I just saw that had a photo of gas prices in November and gas prices in January with the heading/comment: “Biden’s America.”

To my credit, I did not try to engage in debate, but neither did I pass it by and ignore it, which is sometimes the best thing to do. Here’s my comment:

“In statistics class, we learned that correlation does not necessarily mean cause. There are likely other variables/factors to be considered.”

I do not need to engage in any further discussion that would irritate my nerves. This is why I try not to scroll on FB. I actually want to reduce my time on FB, but every now and then, these things come up. Then I was happy to be able to like and love some photos of her grand daughter.

I’m in training. Besides having a personal (exercise) trainer, I am in training to “practice peace that overpowers darkness.” I know that sounds somewhat presumptuous, but it is practice. I don’t always get it right, especially when things get on my nerves. This idea for peace training comes from the February 11 reading from the daily meditation book, Jesus Calling by Sarah Young. I certainly can’t do this practice on my own. But if I connect with the guidance and strength of Jesus and my Creator, I can do my part.

“Nerve” can be used in so many ways: nervous energy, nerves of steel, a bundle of nerves, “You’ve got a lot of nerve!” Then there’s the nerve cells I learned about in college with axons, dendrites, synapses, and all that fading knowledge that I don’t use much, though it could be helpful in cellular imagery for the purpose of meditative healings…..

Where was I going with this? There was something I didn’t want to forget. Oh, in college – The Psychology of Consciousness, all those years ago, was my favorite class. I do recall the dominant theory of dreams being that our sleeping dreams are created by random nerve cells firing while we sleep. But what part of us assigns meaning? And what meanings that mean something important? Though maybe sometimes, they are just random, like the stream of consciousness. But is it really random? There is also a not so dominant theory that when we have a deja vu, we are experiencing something we dreamed since we dream so much that we don’t remember. I mentioned this in my college class. The professor was not impressed. But hey, anything is possible.

The “cowardly lion” in the Wizard of Oz, didn’t believe he had much nerve. But he really did. Or at least he found it.

And Oz never did give nothing to the Tin Man that he didn’t already have.

I love this song and the mellow sound.

~~~

For more on the Saturday Stream of Consciousness,

visit out host, Linda Hill at:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS Feb. 20, 2021 | (lindaghill.com)


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One-Liner Wednesday: A Little Bit of Good

“Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.” — The Reverend Desmond Tutu

A smile, a kind word, a silent prayer, picking up a random piece of trash, and even our own self care, are all little bits of good that add up over time.

One-Liner Wednesday is brought to us by our good host, Lind G. Hill. For more information, visit:

One-Liner Wednesday – Gulp! | (lindaghill.com)


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Good News Tuesday for Feb. 16, 2021: Successful Program Responds to Non-Violent Police Calls, Repair Don’t Waste, Wardrobe Donation, and Plastic Bricks

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

Successful Colorado Program Relieves Police from Non-Violent Calls

Sending health care specialists to non-violent calls frees up police to focus on fighting crime. Since June 1, a program in Colorado has been sending a paramedic and a mental health professional out to handle low level incidents like trespassing and mental health episodes that would have fallen to police. These STAR teams focus on assessment and connecting people with services.

“In its first six months, the Support Team Assisted Response program, or STAR, has responded to 748 (nonviolent) incidents. None required police or led to arrests or jail time.” Here are the details from Denver.

Europe’s Movement toward Repair instead of Waste

The EU’s eco-design regulations are moving forward in March with a regulation that will “define standards for repair and useful life making it easier to repair washing machines, dishwashers, refrigerators and monitors. France is introducing an anti-waste law with a repair index for a wider variety of appliances and devices and aims to make 60% of devices repairable by 2026. You can read more from Next City here.

Alex Trebek’s Family Donates Wardrobe

Alex Trebek’s Jeopardy wardrobe is being donated to The Doe Fund, a charity that provides, “work, housing, vocational training, continuing education and comprehensive social services to underserved Americans with histories of addiction, homelessness and incarceration.” Good Morning America has more on the story.

Or this could be for WATWB? Look for the CBS News video of the Atlanta school counselor who runs a food pantry. His name is Anthony at Carver Elementary in Atlanta

Bricks from Plastic

Yes, we need to reduce our use of plastics, but we can also recycle and repurpose. Nzambi Matee of Kenya is a materials engineer and head of Gjenge Makers, which produces sustainable low-cost construction bricks made of recycled plastic and sand. They are winners of the Young Champions of the Earth Award. Ms. Matee will tell you more about their work in this video:

Got good news?

Feel free to share in the comments!


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SoCS: Way Down Below the Ocean

Today’s prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is:  “above/below.” Use one, use both, use ’em however they inspire you. Bonus points if you use them both. Enjoy!

The first thing I thought of was being under water. I love swimming under water in a pool with a mask so I can see the wavy lines of light. Swimming gave me great comfort in rough times. Last summer, remember when it was warm, I tried to teach my grand daughter to swim. She got really good at swimming UNDER the water, but has yet to trust the water to hold her up to swim above the water for more than a couple of strokes. She’ll get it though.

Once upon a time, I had a dream that I could swim under water and breathe under water, too. It was as natural as breathing above the water. Did you ever see the movie, The Shape of Water ? It’s one of my favorites. It’s a love story, AND it has a happy ending. It’s a strange movie. Intriguing. Some hard parts where I had to remind myself, “Its just a MOVIE.” But the ending is fascinating. Here’s the trailer:

The water creature is played by the same guy who plays the alien Saru in Star Trek Discovery, Doug Jones who is an actor, contortionist, and mime. Also staring in The Shape of Water, is Olivia Spencer who is in a lot of my favorite movies, like Hidden Figures, The Help, and she played God in The Shack. Sally Hawkins plays the main character who is mute. She did a good job.

Earlier in the stream, I thought of an old song by Donovan called “Atlantis,” because there’s the part that goes, “Way down below the ocean, where I wanna be, she may be….” or something like that.

I miss the beach and swimming. I was going to join the YMCA for the pool, but instead, joined a small, cozy gym and have been going to a personal trainer for the first time in my life. There’s a restorative yoga class there Saturday at 10 am which is why I’m going to maybe publish this post early. I am not a morning person. Maybe with the personal trainer and yoga and other classes which are part of “Silver Sneakers,” I’ll be ready to swim well by the time it gets warm enough to go in the ocean.

I took a scuba diving course in my twenties but didn’t follow up with it. Swimming under water with Scuba gear was the most wonderful feeling – like being on another planet. We ever saw a school of barracuda. I had to be in the water a lot because I get seasick on a rocking boat…. Maybe some day, I’ll go scuba diving again.

Before you watch this video of “Atlantis,” the song, imagine it’s warm.

Enjoy the mermaids!

Happy Valentines Day!

For more about Stream of Consciousness Saturday and takes on the prompt, visit Linda Hill at:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS Feb. 13, 2021 | (lindaghill.com)


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Thursday Tree Love: Hemlock?

My husband David identified this tree as a hemlock. We pass by it often on our walks in the neighborhood, and it stands out as different from the live oaks, pines, dogwoods, magnolias, and other trees common to the area.

In my search, I have not found a photo of a hemlock with such spikey looking leaves. What I have learned is that there are many different kinds of hemlock trees and plants. Some are poisonous and some are not, but it’s always good to be careful.

Thursday Tree Love is hosted by Parul Thakur on the second and fourth Thursday of every month. For more tree love visit: #ThursdayTreeLove – 103 – happiness and food


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One-Liner Wednesday: Nurture Love

The hair salon where I got my hair trimmed (back in the old days) found their windows broken in late May or early June after a night of protests following the murder of George Floyd. The business reopened quickly, with their “hurricane boards” in place, trying to make up for being closed for so long due to COVID.

After a couple weeks of driving by and seeing the plain plywood, I remembered that I had a lot of light blue paint leftover from renovations and asked if I could paint an angel of the boards. Apparently the building’s insurance would not cover the windows, and the business owners had applied for assistance but had no idea when the glass would be replaced, so they agreed.

The wood grain inspired the “Angel with the Heart Hairdo” who later inspired the words:

Nurture the blossoms of love wherever you find them.

Let them become you.

For more one-liners, visit Linda Hill at:

One-Liner Wednesday – Drive Slowly | (lindaghill.com)