Winter Wonderland Musings


Woke up this morning to discover snow-line has suddenly dropped 1,500 ft. below Chickaloon, AK, and the fluff continues to steadily fall . . . this will seriously alter my daily routine from hiking to shoveling 😊

The snow’s projected to end by nightfall, so . . . barring a cardiac event 😊 . . . it’ll probably be Sunday before I manage to clear the driveway down to the road, which has yet to be plowed . . . welcome to rural Last Frontier life . . . Love it!

While waiting to step outside and engage Mother Nature’s 13-degree Winter Wonderland with my shoveling skills, I identified with and added a tad to the post below a fellow ole duffer sent on his blog http://rays-daily.com/ . . . thanks Ray!

Reading these Tips for a Better Life triggered poignantWish I’d have realized these soonermemories, and thought some of y’all might enjoy perusing them. Like my Grammy used to scold me when I’d been caught doing something naughty yet again, “Freddy, you’re too soon old and too late smart!” . . . I shoulda’ listened sooner . . . do as I say, not as I’ve done 😊

Wherever this may find you in your ‘Wonderland’ today . . . whether the sun’s shining; snow’s falling; or a storm’s raging, enjoy its wonders . . . they are there if you but look and listen closely.

Tips for a Better Life – (it’s not too late)

1. Take a 10-30 minute walk every day. And while you walk, smile. It is the ultimate anti-depressant.

2. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day. Buy a lock if you have to. 😊

3. Buy a DVR and tape your late-night shows  and get more sleep .       

4. When you wake up in the morning complete the following statement, ‘My purpose is to __________ today.’

5. Live with the 3 E’s – Energy, Enthusiasm, and Empathy.

6. Play more games and read more books than you did last year.

7. Make time to pray. It will provide us with daily fuel for our busy lives.

8. Spend time with people over the age of 70 (not a lot of us still left 😊) and under the age of 6.

9. Dream more while you are awake.

10. Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less food that is manufactured in plants.

11. Drink green tea and plenty of water. Eat blueberries, wild Alaskan salmon, broccoli, almonds & walnuts.

12. Try to make at least three people smile each day.

13. Clear clutter from your house, your car, your desk and let new and flowing energy into your life.

14. Don’t waste your precious energy on gossip, energy vampires, issues of the past, negative thoughts or things you cannot control. Instead invest your energy in the positive present moment.

15. Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn. Problems are simply part of the curriculum that appear and fade away like algebra class but the lessons you learn will last a lifetime.

16. Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a college kid with a maxed-out charge card.

17. Smile and laugh more. It will keep the energy vampires away.

18. Life isn’t fair, but it’s still good.

19. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.

20. Don’t take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

21. You don’t have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

22. Make peace with your past so it won’t spoil the present.

23. Don’t compare your life to others’. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

24. No one is in charge of your happiness except you.

25. Frame every so-called disaster with these words: ‘In five years, will this matter?’

26. Forgive everyone for everything.

27. What other people think of you is none of your business.

28. God heals everything in His time which is always on time.

29. However good or bad a situation is it will change.

30. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will, stay in touch.

31. Get rid of anything that isn’t useful, beautiful or joyful.

32. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.

33. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.

34. Do the right thing!

35. Call your family often (or email them to death!!!) Hey I’m thinking of ya! 😊

36. Each night before you go to bed complete the following statements: I am thankful for __________. Today I accomplished _________.

37. Remember that you are too blessed to be stressed.

38. Enjoy the ride. Remember this is not Disney World and you certainly don’t want a fast pass. You only have one ride through life so make the most of it and enjoy the ride.

39. The best is yet to come, so . . .

40. Keep Looking Up

I M Blessed . . . May U B 2

It’s Snowing!
Downy Woodpecker


Swans on Ice


What a difference a day makes!  . . . freeze-up happened sooner than expected for our local Trumpeter Swan family. The few remaining open patches of water these big birds require for their running take-off is quickly becoming solid-state, and Mom is ‘honking-out’ Dad for not booking an earlier flight south for their cygnets and them 😊


Not to worry. I spoke with a neighbor today who is an avian expert and shares my concern for our Trumpeters’ plight. He is in contact with Bird Rescue authorities who will be able to institute SAD (Swan Assisted Departure) if necessary . . . stay tuned 😊

Where’s the ice skates?

Love to Live, Live to Love” – Amy Carmichael    
                                                                 
Keep Looking Up . . . His best is yet to come!

Color and Emotion


Color holds power to impact our moods, emotions, and behaviors. It’s documented color influences 85% of shoppers’ purchase decisions.

What are your favorite colors? What emotions do they evoke? . . . red’s passion? – blue’s calm? – yellow’s happiness? – orange’s warmth? – black’s power – white’s purity? Generalities? . . . yes, but our color preferences and the emotions they arouse are as unique as each of us  Personally, I’d prefer to drive a red Lamborghini, but price and potential traffic citations temper my emotions, and I drive an off-green Subaru 😊

Remove red’s blaze from an ocean sunset; blue’s calm from an alpine lake; yellow’s brightness from a sunflower’s petals; orange’s glow from a mountain sunrise; black’s background from the midnight sky; white’s brilliance from a snow-capped peak . . . Unthinkable!

Today God brushed creation with animate and inanimate wonders of white to evoke a rainbow of peace in my soul.

“Who is like you among the gods, O Lord -glorious in holiness, awesome in splendor, performing great wonders?”

Romans 2:24


Keep Looking Up . . . His best is yet to come!

First Flight
Majesty
Relaxing Together

Trumpeter Swan Update


Little orphan cygnet Bigfoot evidently is a prodigy who earned their solo flight certification early. He/she took off alone for points south yesterday . . . Hooray!


Mother Nature has granted our Trumpeter family a Flight School extension. The temps have warmed into the 40s and melted much of the ice that had began to form on the lake. The larger of our two local cygnets was able to get airborne for a short distance with their parents yesterday before splashing back down in somewhat less than graceful fashion. The smaller cygnet was unable to achieve lift-off and  paddled madly behind across the lake squawking “Wait Up! Wait Up!😊. Here’s a few pics of our ‘Trumps’.

I M Blessed . . . May U B 2

Trumpeter Swan Family
Cruising Fish Lake
Mom and Cygnets
Mom Dropped Something
All Grown Up
Dad Snoozing
Regal Beauty

Swans and Orphans


Trumpeter Swan Flight School finally commenced on Fish Lake today with the cygnets observing their parents demonstrate Avionics 101.

A lone Trumpeter Swan cygnet, slightly larger than our two resident cygnets, mysteriously appeared on the lake. I can only surmise this little orphan was somehow left behind by its parents I never saw. The little dude/dudette ??? attempted to join our two local cygnets but was fiercely honked away by their territorial Trumpeter parents.

In past years small flocks of swans have landed on the lake for a short layover before resuming their flight south. Hopefully this little Trumpeter I’ve affectionately nicknamed Bigfoot will  be able to resume its journey south before freeze-up.
         
Keep Looking Up . . . His best is yet to come!

Pre-flight Warmup
Airborne
Landing
Talking with Mom
Papa ‘Trump’
Trumpeter Swan Cygnets
Cygnet on Ice
Icy Waters
Orphaned ‘Bigfoot’

Dawn’s Splendor


Creation’s awakening at dawn spurs a grateful rebirth of joy in my soul. Here’s a few glimpses of dawn’s wonder that was mine to behold this morning.

The whole earth is filled with the awe of your wonders; where morning dawns, where evening fades, you call forth songs of joy.

Psalm 65:8

I M Blessed . . . May U B 2

Chugach Range Dawn
Dawn Angel
Dawn Cathedrals
Dawn Greeters
Dawn Spawners

Friluftsliv


SAD . . . Seasonal Affective Disorder is attributed to the long, cold, dark days of winter. Yet, Scandinavian countries, where cold-dark thirty resides for 5 months each year, are consistently ranked among the happiest countries . . . Why?

Friluftsliv – “free air life” – the mood-boosting Nordic concept of connecting with nature; breathing in fresh, frigid air; and embracing the beauty and simplicity of nature in the great outdoors. Promoting spiritual and physical well-being, it was popularized by Norwegian playwright and poet Henrik Ibsen in the 1850s.

As a far-eastern Scandinavian (AKA Alaskan), I can attest this icily inspiring therapy works!  . . . though some may claim I’m merely delusional 😊.

But I don’t have the parkas, snow boots, scarves ,mittens, long-johns, etc. to endure such harsh winter conditions.” . . . no attire excuses! . . . as my Swedish heritage says (my Ancestry profile claims I’m 8% Swedish), “There’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothes.”

 Soooooo . . . suit-up and get out there to enjoy some uplifting 3-F activity . . . Freezing, Frolicking, Fun 😊.

Here’s a few pics from Freddy’s refreshing, 22 degree, Friluftsliv day.

They speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty – and I will proclaim your great deeds.”

Psalm 145:5

I M Blessed . . . May U B 2

Chugach Range
King Mountain
Castle Mountain Mirror
Spruce Grouse

Flight School


Flight School needs to start soon if these cygnets are going to accompany their parents south before freeze-up. This young Trumpeter swan pair hatched their cygnets the end of June , much later than previous Trumpeter parents . . . Frosty Eagle’s watching.

Love to Live, Live to Love” – Amy Carmichael    
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Keep Looking Up . . . His best is yet to come!