The richness I achieve comes from nature, the source of my inspiration.
— Claude Monet, French impressionist (1840-1926)
Oh what a beautiful day it was. The temperature was quite cool, but the sun was shining. Sam was trying to get in a day of fishing between our guests arriving and leaving. This year our company came in shifts so everyone could see and spend time with family and friends they had not seen in awhile, some for two years or more. It was a rather nice way of handling the holidays. Each set got more attention and I could cook the same meals in rotation and who would know? My brother visited in the spring, and he was thrilled to get crappie meals but by the time he was ready to go home he said, “I think I’ve had my fill of crappie.” If I could enter an emoji here it would be one of eye rolling.
There is so much to be thankful for. I think we’d all agree it has been a tough year in one way or another. Then I look out the window where I see Harry, the boy cat, enjoying himself in the sun while he takes catnaps here and there. Wilhelmina, the girl cat, sleeps in the sunroom beside me on the couch. Both cats sleep all day and roam all night. At nightfall I worry about them being outside, then I pray for their safety, then I worry again. It is impossible to keep them in at night. They just won’t have it. Perhaps when the temperatures fall below freezing, maybe then they will stay inside.
Hatcher, the rabbit, loves the cold though I do put a blanket and a lamp over and near her pen. I thought I’d sit with her while she ate and I would eat too since Sam was fishing in the early morning. Though I sit with her on many days, it was the first time we breakfasted together. Hatcher left her foraged greens and sweets and turned her back toward me. While I had never eaten with her, she had never turned her back. I leaned over and massaged her neck like I do regularly. She still did not turn around. The thought came to me that possibly she was seeing my teeth chomping on my breakfast and had determined me to be a predator. That’s the only explanation I could come up with so I left her in peace and took my breakfast with me to the goldfish pond.
My goldfish that were practically the size of a tadpole have grown to about the size of a thumb. I’m pleased with their growth. Also, there is a new frog in the pond — a baby frog. I knew there was an adult frog in the pond. I would see the top of its head and big eyes. I was attempting to befriend the momma frog, but it would only let me get so close. The baby frog clung to the side of the pond and allowed me to talk sweetly, but when I lifted my finger to maybe touch its head, it quickly disappeared. Nature is so inviting, amazing, always changing and yet staying the same. The nature life is a good life; very good.
Shannon Bardwell is a writer living quietly in the Prairie. Email reaches her at [email protected]