The Narcissus Needed to Know This

[Please enjoy our second video story and photos!]

I walked down to the meadow on Saint Patrick’s Day to visit my friend, Mr. Gnome. The daffodil sisters were shouting with their hyacinth smell for me to come over. They had something to say.

I stood on a log to get closer. The eldest leaned down. I peered into her face, and inhaled as big as I could.

“Oh my gosh, you smell divine!”

I heard them whisper

“Why, thank you,” she said, on behalf of the whole clump of girls. And they giggled and waved with delight.

“The slugs have been bugging us,” the eldest told me. “Their breath is so bad. Can you help?”

“I’m not at all sure,” I replied. “What can I do? They live here, too.”

“Just look at these holes in our petals!” she cried.

“You may look bedraggled,” I said, “But that’s what comes from a full season of growth. You’re living your life. You’re feeding the slugs. You’re perfuming the air with your heavenly notes. You’re lovely narcissus!”

Then I added, “You’ve made this meadow a sight to behold. I’m beholden to you and your crew.

“And I know for a fact, you’ve blessed and impressed more than me, the slugs and the bees. We’re so lucky you live here. I don’t know what to do, but let’s ask Mr. Gnome.”

I knew with his spidey-sense ears that he’d heard the whole conversation.

Mr. Gnome simply whispered, “I’ll have a talk with the slugs.”

We met in the garden

P.S. If you missed the last story, it had a video, too.

Building a Sand Snowman in West Seattle

mittens-sandman-posterizedIf it doesn’t snow at the beach, can you still meet a snowman?

building-a-sandmanIf you find the right ingredients, like low tide, a crab leg for a nose,
seaweed hair, driftwood and sea-grass arm,s and pebble eyes…

mittens-posterizedAnd magic mittens that make sand into snow, sort of…


And the final magic?
Sunday sunshine .

Playing by the Railroad Tracks on a Windy Winter Afternoon

Rail Walker

Saturdays should be spent outside.  At least for a few hours, especially if it’s 60 degrees in February, even if it’s windy and doesn’t feel like 60.  Thursday’s snow made the walking trail a muddy bog, so Emotikin decided to walk the rails. Bold, dangerous, carefree, adventurous. That’s what this Saturday called for.

Under the bridge is a river...

Call it the culvert, call it a river, call it a place to jump rock to rock, soak up the sun on a still-cold stone, daring the icy water to swirl too close.

Testing the Nesting for Mr. Mallard

Sea grass, beach grass, duck nest?  Perching here is warmer than the rocks.

Thought Clouds

If Emotikin thoughts were louder than words, what blue-sky-sunny optimism might be heard on this mid-winter concrete beach?

Ice Climber

Avalanche danger? Solid slush.  South face slope still knows what season we’re in. Wishing for spikes on my feet, skis, or a sled.

Fossils in the concrete

What were they thinking, this crew who placed the stones in the concrete berm? Did they notice the fossils in this rock and laugh, wondering whether anyone would ever notice this fine art installation?

Cross-section...We all have tree rings

What layers of life do we each have inside, secret saplings we grew beyond, now seasoned and strong?


Balance in the wind, poised on a pier, invisible cape, courageous.

Time Traveler

What if when you landed, there was a sign saying what year you’d arrived?

Today's play brought to you by the Letter S

Saturday. Sunny. Signs. Sings. Silly. Soul-happy. Seriously.

Life creates captions.

The Snow Day-After

Yesterday’s storm, which only began about three in the afternoon, dumped almost 9 inches in our backyard before midnight. This morning’s picnic table begged for a measurement. Yesterday, knee deep. Today, armpit deep.

Armpit deep the morning after the spring storm

Armpit deep the morning after the spring storm

How deep was it really?

How deep was it really? Armpit deep...

Still, that’s pretty deep, even for these Emotikin. It was too cold to play this early in the morning, and the sun had stayed asleep behind the clouds. The Emotikin decided to crawl back in bed and watch Kung Fu episodes, Season 2, for the whole day.  Too bad Terry didn’t invite them to Starbucks with him. 

I got home from work about 5:30, still an hour before dark. I couldn’t wait to build a snowman, and the dogs couldn’t wait to find a tennis ball under the snow. While they kept looking, I rolled snow. The Emotikin gave me directions, being quite know-it-all about how best to pack and roll the crusty snow. While I rolled, packed, & molded snow into a play pal, the Emotikin refused to put on mittens, and Bella Luna went inside, pouting, like sisters sometimes do. 

Emotikin scaled ice chest to afix the nose.

Emotikin scaled the ice to afix a nose.

Big Emotikin kept Bella’s scarf and decorated our emerging friend with lava rock stones for eyes and a carrot (one of two that I bought at King Soopers on my way home from work just for this  purpose.) I heard myself singing in my head, “And a carrot nose, and two eyes made out of coal…”  

It wasn’t a perfectly pretty Frosty the Snowman; he lacked a scarf, a magic hat, a corncob pipe, and a better rounded belly…not to mention those great rubber boots for dancing around town. But since we’re expecting more sun tomorrow, Emotikin and I tacitly agreed that Frosty was good enough for a photoshoot–at least this time. Really, we just wanted to play.

Playing on the birdhouse
Playing on the birdhouse
Posing on a mountain of snow

Posing on a mountain of snow

The sun was dropping fast on the other side of the house. The backyard was becoming too cold. What else could we do? The front yard! Let’s go find Gnome! 

Tune in to the next posting for the Great Garden Gnome Rescue!  

Spring snow! Soggy dogs!

Knee deep!

Knee deep!

Sweater weather on the way to work, mitten weather on the way home.  I couldn’t wait to take the Emotikin out in the backyard to measure the snow. It was emoti-knee deep on the picnic table at six o’clock.  And that was less than 3 hours of snow.  

Catching snowflakes on one's tongue!

Catching snowflakes on one's tongue!

You're not the tennis ball

what ARE you?

Abby and Mia love the snow. I’m so glad I cleaned the kitchen floors on Sunday. Murphy’s Law of Mopping is not a myth. 

Mia, come here

Mia, come here


Wipe your feet please.

"Wipe your feet please." "But I want to go back outside."