My husband and I went to the Cincinnati Zoo last Saturday to see the penguin walk. The zoo has this event on weekends during the the winter months when it is 50 degrees Fahrenheit or below. It was in the upper thirties; a nice sunny day. Many people came out for this. Lots of parents with children; some strollers with babies. Everyone took pictures (with their cell phones). My husband and I got a glance of some of the penguins waddling by, amongst several zoo personnel who were there to make sure the penguins remained safe. This day, the penguins walked to the Tiki Hut and back to their Wings of the World exhibit.King Penguin

In the penguin exhibit, we got to meet a King penguin named Burger. He stood on a rock (island) surrounded by water in which some of the other penguins were swimming and diving around. He had earned the right to stand there as long as he wants, according to one of his caregivers. Burger is 37 years old, the oldest penguin at this zoo. The baby penguins are kept in a nursery. If one could see them, they would see young penguins look soft and fuzzy, covered with a layer of down.

Today, Google is honoring John Tenniel, the illustrator of Alice In Wonderland. It will be exciting to see how the illustrator of my next book illustrates penguins.

Most of us have to work at being healthy. We have to develop good habits if we want a strong immune system. We have had a long cold/flu season starting in October of last year through this February. I have had my share of colds during it. My husband is trying to get over a nasty bug. I’ve been fixing him chicken noodle soup and such. Tonight I served baked chicken, potato, carrots and cut up fresh fruit (antioxidants). We even sprinkled garlic which has antimicrobial and antiviral properties (something I learned on the internet today) over our food. When I feel a cold coming on, I take vitamin C and try to get plenty of rest. Plenty of rest helps fight off infections. Drinking plenty of water helps to wash toxins out of our bodies. It also helps to moisten our mouths and nasal passages which probably helps us deal with congestion and sore throats better. Washing your hands frequently helps one avoid germs in the first place or spreading your germs to others.

It is important to keep warm and dry. I learned that lesson while in Florida a couple of years ago. While I was there, I didn’t have an umbrella with me. I ended up having to walk through a monsoon to get back to the hotel where my husband and I were staying. I used to think that getting deathly sick in a rainstorm only happened in romance novels while riding on horseback. On that Florida trip, I got to buy some polka dot goulashes. I think I was wanting to relive my childhood when I bought them. We are only young once, but it doesn’t hurt to pretend.

Time for bed. I must get my healthy sleep. (I’m a little too old to call it my beauty sleep!)

RainierMay you have a happy Valentine’s Day. May your day be full of of Valentines from people who love you for who you are. May you let go of any anger you’ve been holding on to. May you love yourself. No one is perfect, but you are loved just the way you are. May you be inspired to do something for yourself and others. May you enjoy some down time, time to goof off, time to explore, time to learn, see or do whatever you want. May you enjoy the simple joys of life. If you are disorganized like me, may you be inspired to straighten part of your house up . . . and get satisfaction from doing so, or just throw the dust to the wind. Enjoy a candlelight dinner with a tablecloth. (Flameless candles might be appropriate.) Enjoy some cheesecake with fresh strawberries. A box of chocolates. You can do it! 

Rainier, Mr. Gray, Aunt Patty, Joy and Noel from Flip, Flap, Try . . . A Cardinal’s Journey

P.S. If Valentine’s Day is over, no problem. Pick another day.

“Often people attempt to live their lives backwards. They try to have more things or more money, in order to do more of what they want so they will be happier. The way it actually works is the reverse. You must first be who you really are, then do what you need to do, in order to have what you want.” — Margaret Young.

It is popular to think of an owl being wise. In Ancient Greece theOwl owl was often associated with the goddess Athena who became associated with arts and wisdom, so owls became associated with wisdom. If I were to use an owl as a character in one of my books, I would probably have it say, “Whooo are you?” We all need to ask this question of ourselves periodically in our lives as we continue to have experiences, grow, and change. What do you need to do? A couples of days ago, I needed to pay my bills. (It felt good to get all the checks in the mail.) I also mailed another a Valentine’s Day card to my husband who’s been working out of town. (We must nurture our relationships.) I exercised and scheduled some doctor appointments. (Health.) Taking time to work on blog. (To promote my business.) I am sure you can think of many things you can do in order to work towards having what you want. Some hospice patients in a study on wisdom were asked what they wanted. Some said, “To enjoy everyday life. To cherish the gifts of life.” ( I’m assuming they were referring to the gifts you don’t need money to buy.)

I hope you were able to garner a nugget of wisdom from my blog. An older and wiser acquaintance of mine suggested, with a twinkle in his eye, the owl character in my book could say, “I don’t give a hoot!” (Humor. What would we do without it?)

Ground Hog DaySuper Groundhog Day. Light snowflakes were falling at 7:28 a.m. this morning in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania when the famous groundhog emerged from his tunnel. A group of men all decked out in black coats and top hats were present as one of them held Punxsutawney Phil high up in the air with one hand while another gentleman read an announcement to a crowd of thousands of fans. Phil didn’t see his shadow . . . which means an early spring. The crowd cheered.

Groundhog Day falls midway between the winter solstice and the spring equinox. Saying it is a clear day only if the groundhog sees his shadow is a German tradition. My husband’s ancestors are from Lithuania and Germany. Also, he is a naturalist who grew up in Pennsylvania. All which make Groundhog Day his favorite holiday. I need to ask Hallmark to make some happy Groundhog Day cards.

Is the 02/02/2020 Super Bowl overshadowing Groundhog Day? Not if you are from my household. Though, I did enjoy watching Hallmark’s kitten bowl.

Bottom line, it is nice to have holidays or events to cheer about. Take the time. Don’t let work or your bothers overshadow it. Life’s too short.