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.



  1. I have watched your flooding with shock and horror. I am glad to hear of so many stories of man's humanity to man, though. I continue to hold those affected in NE and IA in my thoughts and prayers.

    And, this line..."Knitting up mittens is also a way to hold those little hands across the miles." Priceless. What beautiful imagery!

  2. The floods have been so awful and scary. It is just heartbreaking to see how much has been lost.

    Love your fun, colorful mittens - and the line Kat mentions above.

    The book sounds right up my alley - I'm off to search for it. Have you ever read any of Anne LaBastille books? (Woodswoman is the first and is so very good.)

  3. I hate to see anyone have to go through that type of flooding. We had 10 feet of water in our house when Gaston hit Richmond years ago. The lasting devastation was unimaginable. Love your colorful mittens. They are a great way to use up left over bits and to take your mind off the flood waters.

  4. I also don't take water for granted, but my experience is mainly due to drought. I hadn't really considered that the devastation of flooding could also mean the lack of water plus losing so much. Thanks for sharing stories of help and hope, and what sounds like a stellar book recommendation.

  5. After Hurricane Irma we were flooded for three days. Then we were flooded only at high tide when the water came back up through the sewers bringing all sorts of YUCK. I wouldn't wish that on anyone!

    Hoping that the spring will bring you some dryer weather and relief from all the rising water.

  6. I love your mittens . Poor Nebraska. UGH. Poor Puerto Rico. Im reading : the Day the World Came to Town about 9/11 and the town Of Gander Newfoundland rallying around people from all over the world. We have tickets to the musical in May. Allison saw it on Broadway and loved it!

  7. I've been thinking of you, Jane -- and all the people of Nebraska. XOXO

  8. glad you have water and it's scary on what we depend on or assume we will have. I lose electricity all the time (all electric house so I lose water) and whenever it happens I vow to never take it for granted.. Life gets busy then I do! Love the mittens and my you are cranking them out.

  9. I think about this often myself. We have so much technology and yet there are still parts of the world that cannot get clean water. Aside from air, it is our most important need!

    Beautiful knitting. I appreciate anyone who has patience for socks. :)

  10. Jane, I've been thinking of you and your Nebraska friends and families. The devastation of flooding is just mind blowing to me. We drove through Big Thompson Canyon in CO a year after the flood there and it's just so hard to imagine. That book sounds really interesting...I'm off to give it a look!

  11. Adding the letters exchange title to my TBR list...always enjoy books that use that convention; my fave: 84 Charring Cross Road (hope I got that title right!)
    Ah Mother Nature! Sorry always to hear about the ravages ... grateful always for efforts of responders, resilience of those affected and help from neighbors and strangers.