"I'm going to speak my mind because I have nothing to lose."--S.I. Hayakawa

Thursday, November 24, 2016

A Full and Thankful Heart

Today, the coldest day  of winter so far at a mere three degrees above zero Fahrenheit, my heart is warm and full of thanks:

Today I give thanks for having known Frank, Ron, and Sally, three friends whose hearts were large enough to warm the world, and who have been released from pain, and for all my friends and relatives who passed before them.

I give thanks for having had the privilege (and the frustration) of having a little green parrot share 30 of his 44 years with me, and for molting a rainbow of feathers I can hold in my hands.

I give thanks for all the dogs and cats, all the birds wild and tame, all the magnificent animals of the world that enrich my life beyond measure.

Przewalski's horse, the takhi of Mongolia, a true wild horse.

I give thanks for the Coastal brown bears of Lake Clark National Park for not eating me, and for one young sow in particular who chose to sit and nurse her two cubs right in front of me. What a gift that was.

I give thanks to the local highway maintenance crews that give me litter bags by the case-full and the joy I find in making my part of the world a better and cleaner place by filling those bright yellow bags, all while seeing nature up close and personal.

A lady bug on a piece of tire.

I give thanks for new friends who have joined my circle and who encouraged me to turn the dial on my camera to something other than automatic, and for the resulting new dimension that has given my world.

I give thanks for finally realizing that a suet block in the bird feeder on a very cold day will entice red-breasted nuthatches to hold still long enough for an in-focus picture.

I give thanks for my distant family and all my near and far friends. We might not see each other very often, but I know when we do, we pick right up as if no time had intervened.

I give thanks for having lived in Alaska almost all of my life as there is no other place I'd rather be.

I give thanks for the loves in my life--I dance with you often in my dreams.
And last, I give thanks for 75 years of learning--sometimes the difficult and heartbreaking way, sometimes the joyful and glorious way--the many, many lessons of life and for having the age to understand why things happened as they did, and for the ability to translate some of those lessons and experiences into words.


  1. Thank you for all you do and the joy you give to so many people with your adventures and pictures.

    1. Thanks, Bud. Have a very happy Thanksgiving.

  2. As Bud said, we're thankful to have you in our lives, taking us to places we will never get to visit, but know through your words and pictures. I'm thankful for your friendship even if it is just through cyberspace.

    1. And to you, Walk, one of the best classmates ever.

  3. Your pictures and words brought me to tears once again, your pictures through their beauty and pictorial messages, and your words through their unabashed love and gratitude. Today, I am more grateful than ever that you are in my life and that you exist to brighten the world. Thank you for you and the joy and wonder that you bring to so many. Hugs! Patti

  4. Aw, shucks. You are the most loving person I know. Thanks for you.

  5. I'm so glad I came here and on my laptop with its BIG screen. You are, indeed, a blessing to all of us who have gotten to know you and Alaska on FB and here on your blog.