Wednesday, March 27, 2019
Clean water is the stuff of life. Flood waters are devastating. Overflowing rivers created fertile farm ground in Nebraska and Iowa but floods also wash away rich top soil. Local readers and some farther away have read the news of flooding in Nebraska and Iowa. A perfect storm of record snowfall, deep layers of frozen ground and river ice, followed by rain and sudden warm-up created ice jams and historic flooding. The Spencer dam gave way sending a wall of water down the Niobrara River Valley. Lives, farms, cattle, homes, and businesses were swept away in the blink of an eye. Three-fourths of Nebraska counties are requesting assistance. Prayers and help will be needed for a long time.
The stories of neighbors and strangers helping each other abound. One day in Fremont, Ne., volunteers made 1000 lunches. A private flying company flew (at no charge) stranded individuals, including parents separated from their children at daycare, at no charge. Dentists donated toothbrushes. Heroes and heroines walk in our midst.
Lincoln was safe and dry but came within in two days of losing water supply. Helicopters air lifted in 400 sandbags weighing 1500 lbs. each to protect the wells. Residents were asked to reduce water use by 50% for several days. We continued for another few days with a 25% reduction. I have never taken water completely for granted. However this experience made me think about third world countries where citizens haul water daily. I am mighty thankful to have a dry roof over my head and easy access to clean running water.
Spring has arrived with longer days and sunshine. Yesterday I walked in a lightweight fleece and noticed buds on trees. This morning the sun is shining and the March wind gusts. I am leaving shortly to spend the middle of the day with my sister. Lunch and chatting are the only things on our agenda.
Currently I am knitting on the pink socks. I sent a bunch of mittens to my grandsons. They like to wear "knitted up Grammy mittens" outdoors because they allow more movement than heavier water-proof mittens worn in the snow. Although mitten season is coming to an end, they may wear them this early Spring. If not, they will fit one of the four next year. As for me, I had a good time putting together yarn from previous hat and mitten projects. Knitting up mittens is also a way to hold those little hands across the miles.
I am currently rereading Letters From Yellowstone by Diane Smith. The novel, set in the late 1800's is written in the form of letters. The main character is a young woman naturalist who joins a Montana professor leading a group investigation of Yellowstone Park plant life. I am enjoying the slow meandering pace of the letters. I also am intrigued with the way Smith develops the storyline and the characters through letters. Letters, nature writing, a story about the west, a spunky young woman, and quirky characters make a pleasant read for me.
Linking with Kat and the Unravelers today. I hope this finds you dry and safe. May the sunshine bring warmth to your corner of the world.
Wednesday, March 13, 2019
Today I went for a short walk. I encountered two young boys on bicycles and remarked, "nice day to be out on bikes." One sweet little guy replied, "yes, the snow is almost gone, the sun is out, and it stopped raining. That is what I am glad about today." Amen. Being glad about sunshine means hope. Another neighbor was out with her children who were drawing with chalk on the sidewalk. We chatted a few minutes. She told me she found something green in her yard - a dandelion - but it was green! I love winter but am ready to welcome Spring. Change is constant and the dependable rhythm of seasonal change is reassuring.
I cast on a pair of pale pink socks in honor of Spring and I am knitting hope into every stitch. Hope for Spring, hope for the boy on his bike, hope for the dandelion, and hope that all children can get outdoors and be glad in the sunshine.
I am reading The Library Book by Susan Orlean. I opted out of the audio, narrated by the author and picked up a hard copy. I am enjoying the general history and commentary on libraries in general. In my opinion, some of the many details about the LA library history could have been omitted. This isn't the most compelling nonfiction I've ever read but I am enjoying it and will finish.
Just squeaking in at the end of the day to link with Kat and the Unravelers. I hope your days bring a touch of Spring.