Wednesday, June 29, 2011

f r i e n d s - w i t h o u t - b o r d e r s

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Wild lilies grow thick on the knoll...

Monday, June 27, 2011

A Post for Married Men

Question: How do you have a little innocent fun on a Saturday afternoon in Switzerland?

Answer: Tell your wife to get out to take a picture, drive away while she's snapping, and then watch her run frantically after you, screaming as bovine follow in her wake.

(Post script to the driver: Stupid hillbilly)


Friday, June 24, 2011

I have been longing for robin eggs for my beloved bird's nest... only there are no robin eggs in the wood where I walk. Come to think of it, there are no robins at all!

And though I did not find these in any forest, they arrived in my mailbox yesterday in a yellow envelope. No nests I've ever seen are manilla and flat; but two little birds had flown them there from half way around the world. Not blue, but rather green, we speculated about their origins... and I guess my imagination got away with me.

:) This just warms my heart.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

I find it fascinating the way mankind strives to honor God.

Crosses and shrines pepper the countryside, each unique in design and vision. Here, someone thought to give shade to the Christ as He hangs on the cross. Compassion or sense of beauty?

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

"My skin is kind of sort of brownish
Pinkish yellowish white.
My eyes are greyish blueish green,
But I'm told they look orange in the night.
My hair is reddish blondish brown,
But it's silver when it's wet.
And all the colors I am inside
Have not been invented yet."

-- Shel Silverstein

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Some days I feel just like her.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Fallen forgotten under mother-in-law's tree, I ask if I can gather these tiny apples.

"Are you going to make jam?" she inquires.

No, I reply, I'm going to make pictures!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day

Friday, June 17, 2011


I wonder what glad-hearted person created an oasis in this most unlikely place?

Thursday, June 16, 2011

I have long wished for a real bird's nest to decorate my house with, but not wanting to barge in on nature and steal someone's home, well...

However! Little birdies recently built a nest under the eaves and farm-bred hubby did not approve in the least. He was quick to pull it down... and then bring it to me!

I am in love. With the man who thinks to bring me a bird's nest!

Meanwhile, our parakeet Phoebe laid her first eggs and sat on them while her hubby kept guard and fed her. (such a lovely metaphor, no? I praised him profusely for that.). Sadly and after long days of waiting, her eggs dried up; but before I could salvage them, she pecked them open and began to eat what she found. Who knew birds did that?

And I was hoping to see tiny naked bird mouths gaping up asking for food, and hear their sweet silent chirps fill my spirit. Maybe next time...

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Château d'Alt-Falkenstein
Balsthal, Switzerland

You ring the bell and hope the gatekeeper is home.

A museum displays various periods of local history.

The castle dates to the first half of the 12th century, which in my American friend's mind is ... "old! I want to see old!".

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


...small hands to hold, sweet feet swinging, candies from the wise, covert smiles, the inevitable droning, ties and pleated pants, songs that open heart wells, enticing lazy kitchen smells, long talks on porches, white buttons, antsy boys, glittery girls, whispering teens, conservatives and liberals, the indifferent, the seemingly indifferent...

those who have come to love and be loved...

those who have come to judge, hoping they will not be judged...

those who find church inside them.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Friday, June 10, 2011

In the seventh century there lived an Irish missionary to Switzerland and monk called St. Ursicinus, who built a monastery in a place that would come to be known as St. Ursanne.

His hermitage is a favorite place of mine.

Yesterday I quoted the 2nd century Persian poet Hafiz and his questions about God; my own journey with God is a Biblical one, but like Hafiz and many others, I feel God is greater than our expression of Him; His divine attributes more ferocious than anything we can neatly fit into our theological definition or conceive with human intellect.

Thank God He is greater than my assumptions of Him.

Hafiz is a little shelf where my thoughts about God and the meaning of life can sit down and find tranquility.

He writes:

"We are like lutes once held by God.

Being away from his warm body

Fully explains

This constant yearning."

I answered that for you, Nancy. :)

It is always a risk to express oneself clearly with regard to religion... for clarity, I feel, will not be known in this world; not until we are made to see and know the glory of God.

I am a lute once held by God, longing for the warmth of His divine body.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

"I have a thousand brilliant lies
For the question:

How are you?

I have a thousand brilliant lies
For the question:

What is God?

If you think that the Truth can be known
From words,

If you think that the Sun and the Ocean

Can pass through that tiny opening
Called the mouth,

O someone should start laughing!

Someone should start wildly Laughing -

-- Hafiz (Shams-ud din Mahommed)

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Last week we went strawberry picking in the hot, blazing sun. Each of us took a basket for our little cueillette, and for some reason darling-hulking-Russian was handed the kiddie basket, although no one can remember exactly why.

When you pick strawberries at this local farm, you hand them your basket to be weighed before you begin. I was first in line and submitted my big maternal basket - the mother-ship of berry picking - the little girls were next with their medium-sized plastic blue ones, and hubby brought up the rear, handing over a basket that was light years too small for his amazonian frame.

He approached me in the fields:

"Why did you hand me this tiny doll basket? The ladies at the counter were laughing at me and I couldn't figure out why! This is man-abuse!"

He's talking, but I'm thinking... look at the hotty with those massive shoulders!

The second time around, I took little darling and we picked in the pouring rain and hot sun by turn, the clothes drying on our backs after each "rinsing".

The sky was fiercely beautiful...

The result of all this berry-patching is fifteen jars of jam and a freezer full of sweet delight.

Monday, June 6, 2011

We happened upon these yodelers in Laufen, dressed in traditional Swiss attire. I couldn't resist asking them for a picture - their faces as beautiful and cheerful as their music.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Freedom is a funny thing. Here's to those riding its path with me!

Friday, June 3, 2011

In this world of expectation and conformity ... don't be afraid to stand out.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Come for tea, grandfather?

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Ode to the Swiss tunnel.

Down the canyon we drive through on a regular basis, workers are busy (and have been busy for years now) carving tunnels to extend the motorway.

And if you're wondering how the Swiss get around their mountains, the answer is they don't! They go straight through solid rock.

The winding road we take now will be replaced by a fast lane...

and the deep ravines will fall calm and silent as they were thousands of years ago.

If you're asking yourself how I took this picture, think "hanging out the window while hubby sped at 50 miles an hour down a two-lane road with no shoulder." See how devoted I am to this blog?