Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Embracing Spring at the Ranch

Spring is definitely springing here at the ranch. Crisp green buds are bursting forth on trees. Even the pine trees are in bloom.
Of course, the downside to that is all that yellow pine pollen that is starting to drift through the air, coating cars and anything else in its wake. Pretty soon everything will have a yellow haze.

But it's not just the trees reveling in the rains and warmer temperatures. Walking through the woods, you can tell that all of the landscape is coming back to life.
See that tiny little flower near the center?
Though this guy is much showier.
We never know what we might see when we go for our evening walks in the woods. Lately we've been exploring a portion of the property that was badly damaged by the wildfire in 2011. 

Six and a half years later, the scars still remain.
Some trees fared better than others.
And some are just downright amazing. See the charring at the base of this tree? And it's obviously been weakened because it's fallen over.
But don't count this guy out just yet.
Against all odds, this tree is still alive. Follow the trunk. See all of the lush, green branches at the top?
A great example that we may be beaten and scarred, but we can still have a productive life. 

We did a little planting this weekend. Added some lavender and rosemary to hubby's hibiscus.
And I finally planted my flower boxes.
I'm so glad to see them with flowers in them for a change and can't wait until those plants on the ends and in the center start trailing down the sides. These planters are next to our side entrance and the colors brighten what was an otherwise boring area. Now I just need a color bowl to sit atop that chair and, perhaps, a potted plant next to it to liven up the rocks.
I gotta tell you, though, sometimes we find the strangest things hanging around here at the ranch.
But one must be careful about inviting these creatures inside, because they love to eat. Mostly meat and potatoes. Fortunately, I can cut up a few red potatoes, toss them in a skillet with some butter, add some onions...
Cook them over medium-high heat until the potatoes are browned and soft, then salt and pepper to taste.
The only problem with taking in these strange creatures and feeding them, though, is this.
If only they weren't so darned cute.

Oh, and speaking of cute creatures. Take a look at this and tell me what's wrong with this picture.
No, Big Daddy hasn't taken to eating milk bones. However, something sure is interested in his barbecue brisket. Do you see it? Can you tell what it is?

Now it's your turn. Like Jan did yesterday, I showed you some examples of how resilient nature can be. What are some of the things you appreciate most in nature? The flora? The fauna? And what are some ways you've seen nature's resilience? 

Three-time Carol Award nominee, Mindy Obenhaus, lives on a ranch in Texas with her husband, the youngest of her five children and two dogs. She's passionate about touching readers with Biblical truths in an entertaining, and sometimes adventurous, manner. When she’s not writing, she enjoys cooking and spending time with her grandchildren. Learn more at www.MindyObenhaus.com


  1. Snicker. Dogs show up in the most interesting places. Did he/she get a reward for being that photographic conversation piece?

    I will admit it -- I'm jealous of your signs of spring which are much more advanced than ours. But our snow is melting even though it's supposed to snow tomorrow and Thursday. I'll pretend that isn't going to happen because the pavement is finally clear of ice and snow and my physio gave me the all clear to ease back into Nordic walking. Sqqquuueeealll!!!

    I'm in awe of our gardens that lie dormant under so much snow and even salt that's sprayed up from the plows, and yet the plants wrestle out from under with some encouragement from the sun -- which is way warmer than in January! And my country rose bush at the edge of the road -- well this is the second year the city came and chopped up all the ice covering the run off drain and tossed huge chunks of dirty, gravelly, salty ice right on top of that poor bush. It came back thriving last year and I expect it will this year as well. Nothing can keep a country gal down for long, I guess.

    By the way -- that bent over tree is a life lesson in one image. Awesome!

    1. No, she did not get a reward. Crazy dog. Guess she thought Daddy was a soft target.

      Yay on the Nordic walking. I'm happy dancing with you, Kav.

      Yes, I've always been amazed at the things that come back after being buried under snow. Up in northern Michigan where the winters are longer, they have some of the most beautiful roses I've ever seen. It's like they only have a few months to shine so, by golly, they're not going to miss that opportunity to do so.

      Now about that tree. Isn't that a great life lesson? It should be on one of those motivational posters.

  2. I'm sorry I didn't make it to the Cafe yesterday, Mindy!

    That tree is fascinating! You would think that with that broken trunk, the tree would be gone. But there it is - still thriving and green. A great life lesson.

    I love the wanna-be thief. So cute. :-)

    1. Jan, it's her cuteness that allows her to get away with so much. She's spoiled.

      I'm still baffled by that tree. I think that should be my new go-to place whenever I'm feeling down or that life is getting the best of me. Just looking at the tree should be all the encouragement I need.