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Four Moons

Saturday, September 26th, 2015

 

moon-1_02

Sunday, September 27, brings us a whopping 4 moons at one time–the Blood Moon, the Harvest Moon, a Super Moon, and a Total Lunar Eclipse!  Of course, they all refer to the same moon but each has a special meaning.

The Blood Mood refers to the last total lunar eclipse in a tetrad of 4 total lunar eclipses.  This tetrad started on April 15, 2014 and includes the eclipses on October 8, 2014 and April 4, 2015. The next tetrad won’t begin until April, 2032.

The Harvest Moon refers to the full moon in September.  Folklore says that this is the Harvest Moon because farmers can work late into the night bringing in the harvest by the bright light of the full moon. Nowadays I’m pretty sure that headlights have taken over that duty!

A Super Moon occurs when the full moon also happens when the moon is at its closest point to the Earth in its slightly elliptical orbit.  This Super Moon will be about 225,000 miles from the Earth won’t be this close again until November of 2016.  The difference is noticeable in both size and brightness but shouldn’t be confused with the “Moon Illusion” that makes a full moon near the horizon look massively huge.  The Moon Illusion really is an illusion–just bracket that huge full moon with two fingers–it will shrink right back to normal size.

Finally, this full moon with be a Total Lunar Eclipse.  For us, the eclipse will have already have started at moonrise but totality–when the moon enters the darkest central part of the Earth’s shadow–will begin with the moon nicely above the horizon and will last for an amazing 72 minutes!

To find the time of moonrise for your location, go to http://www.timeanddate.com/moon/ and enter your location.

Moon rise is always a magical moment, and watching one with intent makes it even better!

With clear skies, of course.

guest writer, Jeff Ross

Mare-Serenitatis

Mare Serenitatis

the long weekend

Monday, October 13th, 2014

hh-2    Saturday morning at Hungry Horse for the Le Griz Ultra Run (50 miles). We were there to crew for a good friend. It was a long satisfying day in a gorgeous place.

HH-am The weather was variable, with everything except snow. Tamaracks and aspen have turned a burnished gold.

talltrees   fall

Later in the weekend we walked around Lion’s Lake. The trees are so tall. The climate there, near Glacier Park, is more like the Pacific NW than the part of the state where I live. It is semi-arid here.

backyard  west

the view from the house, looking west.

roadhome the road home, today at noon. That snow capped mountain is behind the house.

**
Years ago, in Houston, a random person gave me this quip as an early birthday gift.

It was a delight to see the words on a bumper sticker Sunday afternoon.

the edge

and now it is October?

Thursday, October 9th, 2014

again? and already?
It’s been a busy year with a lot of changes and reassessments.

sunday-tea  newmooonsky

Studio work was on hiatus while we moved house, now it is back! Hooray

.tracks  fault-line-a  moon-dance

Teaching had been on hold for a long while but I will be traveling again in 2015.

Not frequently, but still: traveling to teach from time to time. (the schedule will be updated as contracts are formalized).

The web site, long neglected, will be refurbished in the coming weeks (if the elves show up <G>)

***

In other news,  our dear, funny, and much loved, ms. Gracie passed away  in late September from complications following surgery. She is missed more than I can say.

She was a confident and happy puppy girl (despite being bounced around so many times before OBeau adopted her) and reminded us always, as dogs do, that the moment that counts is the now.

so-bright  Here she is, prepping for a laser treatment in late August, happy, smiling. her future’s so bright, she’s gotta wear shades. We honestly thought she’d make it through.

As GK says: “Be well, do good work and keep in touch.”

Summer Solstice weekend

Monday, June 23rd, 2014

The majority of the move is complete! Hooray. Until the Solstice, things were being moved bit by selected bit. Boxes were emptied, things put away; boxes taken back to the house in Billings and refilled. My goal was to only move what was needed in this household, would have to be replaced or was of great personal value. Another criteria was that “furnishings”, including artwork, be in keeping with its character.

The house in town is a small, old fashioned cottage in a neighborhood just off the Historic District. This house is open and airy with a circular feeling interior. It was built for the wrap around view. Much of what I had lived with over the past decades had a sort of “funky” feeling that just doesn’t fit here. A few representative bits have moved, but not whole collections. Books have been carefully selected (“Will I read this again?” – or- “is this an heirloom?””)  Art that has meaning to me or that feels right is moving, personal items have been culled.

So far, so good. As boxes are emptied, everything has a place and a use, whether functional or aesthetic. I will not have to deal with mystery boxes in the future!

On Friday we picked up a truck, loaded it on Saturday and got home before dark. Sunday the truck was offloaded and returned to Helena, way ahead of the deadline. We got our shopping done  and made it home in good form. Sadly, there is still one more car trip to finish up with getting items to the appropriate charities, and of course, the dreaded cleaning. That will happen in between the 30th and the holiday weekend.

Sunday 9_17

9:17 a.m. the truck as full as we got it on Saturday. The dogs did help!

sunday11_32

11:32 a.m. Empty truck, happy people, happy dogs.

stella

Stella supervised from her chair. She wouldn’t operate the camera much less supervise the work.

***

Today is Monday, a work day. Half the boxes are unpacked, their contents put away, time has been spent outdoors and in the studio!  We have been to the treehouse once already and look forward to going up again next weekend.

west-dusk   Life is good.

p.s. if you need my change of address, email me please. All other contact info remains the same.

rain, on the second of October

Thursday, October 3rd, 2013

“Last night
the rain
spoke to me
slowly, saying,
what joy
to come falling
out of the brisk cloud,
to be happy again
in a new way
on the earth!
That’s what it said
as it dropped,
smelling of iron,
and vanished
like a dream of the ocean
into the branches
and the grass below.
Then it was over.
The sky cleared.
I was standing
under a tree.
The tree was a tree
with happy leaves,
and I was myself,
and there were stars in the sky
that were also themselves
at the moment
at which moment
my right hand
was holding my left hand
which was holding the tree
which was filled with stars
and the soft rain –
imagine! imagine!
the long and wondrous journeys
still to be ours.”
― Mary Oliver

hideaways

Saturday, September 28th, 2013

The theme for this month’s Sketchbook Challenge is “houses and hideaways”. It’s a great opportunity to do a follow up on the last blog post, a visit to the treehouse.

We spent a long weekend there, returned Tuesday. It was as always, therapeutic.

The interior space is quite small but the decks are expansive. Here are some views and details. Perhaps you will see how the place got  its name. From inside, every window looks out to panoramic landscape as well as the branching of the log supports.

nwcorner

the kitchen window
e-deckSouth East deck     morning

looking out to the “driveway”

    butte.nwdaybreak secorner west-dusk

 

jay

In the morning the grey jays fly into the deck for treats: bird seed or bread, or dog kibble in a pinch. Unlike the more showy Stellar Jays, they are not shy birds. This past visit we saw a lot of elk and moose sign but no animals.The dogs may have had something to do with that.

Visit the Sketchbook Challenge Blog to see other interpretations of this month’s theme, and drop in on the personal blogs of other hosts for tutorials, videos, giveaways.

Leave a comment here for the chance to win a pdf of my “Idea to Image” workbook. A name will be drawn at random on October 4.

 

p.s., with any luck at all, the GeoCounter will be back before this posts – that’s an ugly space without it.

unplugged

Thursday, September 5th, 2013

ridge2

Earlier this week, after too much thinking and not enough planning, we headed upcountry for the first time this season. Being completely unplugged and off grid provides a wonderful opportunity to *not* think, to *not* worry or plan and to *not* get bogged down in the details of  responsibility. Certainly there are chores: opening the treehouse, cleaning up the decks, moving wood and more. The difference is, for me anyway, that I can see and feel the results of my efforts when I am up there. For example, piles of firewood are quantifiable. It is easy to see when wood needs to be moved closer to where it will be used and so forth. Similarly, clearing walkways, cutting back tall grass in my “parking spot” and pruning out young trees are all tasks that need doing every year. I love knowing that I got the work done, can go off for a walk, come back and sit on the deck watching the birds, the dogs and the shifting light.

thebowl       secorner

Although my neighborhood is relatively quiet and the morning river walks are lovely and somewhat solitary, the noise of being in town is constant.  Having the stillness and peace at the “tree house” this week was a gift and a reminder of how important that deep solitude is to me. At home in town, in addition to the birds in my gardens, there is the almost constant electrical whirr of fans, of the fridge, the noise of neighborhood children, dogs and traffic, occasional sirens.

At the treehouse: the soft whirring of the jays, the cries of coyotes at night, the river of a wind storm followed by the rhythm of rain all night and the whistling call of the ground squirrels my dogs find so entertaining. Every once in a while, a large animal will move through. We hear branches breaking, the rustle of grass, the dogs might bark once or twice. This trip I did not see them but moose, elk, black bears and deer all live there, it is their home, I am just a visitor.

My next trip will be in a week or so depending on various schedules. We will stay for 5 days if all goes well. Stay tuned.

***

beau-9-3   Beau, keeping track     gracie-9-3 ms. Gracie, ready to roll, again!

The dogs were ecstatic when we arrived at the gate and they were released.

gate2

By the time I had made the climb up our drive, they had criss-crossed the ridge and met me on the deck, both in full body wag. They spent our time there on the  move, chasing and waiting for ground squirrels that live in the wood piles and downed timber. They would come back to me for a bit, have a drink or a rub, then one or the other would alert and both would take off up the meadow or down the hill. Beau would sometimes lay down for a nap (he has an “off button”), ms. Gracie would still be running had we not come home. She has the Border Collie energy and stamina. She is also still young and at an  age where she will whimper with fatigue but get up and run some more at the smallest opportunity.

october textures

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012

October 31’st. Warm and windy here but clear. The leaves are all down from the big trees out front but still hanging on out back. The lilacs will be the last to let go.

Our morning walks are beginning an hour later in the morning now, partly because daylight is slower to arrive, partly because the later it is, the fewer critters are out and about, tempting the dogs to run and chase. I’ve managed to find a walking route and routine that (for four days now) has kept Beau from collecting nasty burrs. This is important. He’s a wonderful companion but spending an hour and a half each day trying to comb him out gets frustrating. He doesn’t like it and it feels like a struggle. Saturday he had a serious grooming and “detailing”. That should help. Gracie has a smoother coat and is much easier to comb out.

A light snow, combined with heavy wind brought almost all the leaves down last weekend. What an interesting carpet texture.

Outside the studio door, the “Burning Bush” is in full glory. What astounding color. I hope it holds for a while.

***Most of my time the last two weeks has been directed to learning more about Social Media, rethinking the museletter and working with Coaching Clients. If you subscribe to the museletter, you can expect a new one in the next few days. (updated subscription information is not available yet. If you are not on the mailing list and would like to be, drop me a note and I will add you. You can opt out at any time).

I have room for two more Coaching Clients right now.

If you want more information, click here.

***

Of course, for the past several days, my thoughts have been with family and friends and everyone on the Eastern Seaboard who has been, and will be, dealing with the Storm and its aftermath. I am grateful that my nearest and dearest have come through, but heartbroken at the widespread devastation.

Here’s how to help:

http://t.news.msn.com/us/heres-how-to-help-sandys-victims

I hope you are well and safe and if the storm impacted you and yours, I wish a speedy return to “normal”.

all best, laura

Friday, morning walk

Friday, October 19th, 2012

When the light came up, the cup of coffee finished and correspondence completed, the sky was bathed with coral.    We headed out to the Island, the light was up and every plant, every leaf was burnished with perfect October gold.

    

The old trunks are among my favorite “found” forms.

The textures looking across the middle of the Island are wonderful. Color is not as intense as a week ago, but here we are, nearing the end of leaf season. With heavy wind storms the increasingly low temperatures will soon bring all the leaves down.

 

Right now there’s a wonderful contrast between the skeletal structures of weeds that have lost their seeds and leaves and the plants that are still hanging on.

 

If you look closely, you’ll see ms. Gracie, running, above, mid frame. She loves to go full tilt boogie.

Beginning my day like this with the dogs, the cycles of the seasons , keeps me focused and centered. It’s easier to come home and work, after a meditative walk.

10/10

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012

The dogs and I went to the tree house for the weekend.

This is the view of the “Bowl”, a volcanic formation. Michael situated the treehouse for this view.

If the weather holds, we will go up again at the end of the week. It’s the last opportunity for this year, IMO, and there is much to be done, having neglected the space all Summer.

Highlights: clean air, no smoke! A wild cat screeching one night. Absolute quiet aside from the local critters. Eight inches of snow, but drivable roads in, mud driving out. ick. Crystalline skies with all the stars and satellites – no ambient light from cities, towns, ranches, roads or neighbors.

The dogs had a wonderful time.

Downside: since I’d not been there all year, there is unfinished business plus chaos caused by visits from bears. Next year I must return to a regular schedule of being there.

Despite our long absence, the gray jays  were waiting for us and our handouts. The Stellars are more dramatic looking and  a wonderful blue but more shy. No pix this time, sorry.

Gracie, at 5 months, still does not know she is a puppy rather than a big dog. She runs hard and gets tired, but is always willing to keep up with Beau or whoever. She had a fabulous weekend.

Now it’s time to write a museletter and update a few other things.

I have space for two new coaching clients if you are interested.

hope you are enjoying this dramatic changing of seasons.