Tag Archives: Family

Monarch Monday

My daughter has been fostering monarch butterflies this summer and I’ve been privileged to be able to experience it in part with her.  It’s been a truly moving, enriching and “transforming” experience.  Here are two of the beauties I got to watch emerge just the other day…

It was absolutely magical, you guys!  Like, I know that we have all heard the inspiring and philosophical sayings about caterpillars transforming into butterflies, but witnessing first hand, the complete life cycle of these unique and amazing creatures that my daughter has fostered has brought me to tears on more than one occasion.  I’m truly in awe…

She hadn’t intended on fostering Monarchs, it just sort of happened.  You can read more about her journey on her Instagram account at  https://www.instagram.com/wolfehartwoods/ where she has captured beautiful photos and amazing videos throughout the process – starting with the mother butterfly laying the eggs on the milkweed right outside her front door.  If you do plan to take a look, I would recommend scrolling to the very first post and going from there.  Her videos of them hatching from their eggs, munching on milkweed, crawling around, and then pupating and emerging are really amazing!

(As a bit of a side note and a proud mom’s shameless plug: Wolfehartwoods is her secondary Instagram account, she also has https://www.instagram.com/rachaelswiregarden/ for her business where she shares the exquisite and unique wire wrapped tree of life pendants she creates.)

But back to the butterflies…

Interestingly, the most moving and meaningful part of the process for me personally, was watching the caterpillars transition into a pupa.  It looked extremely uncomfortable and difficult, and on some strange level – I related and resonated, and empathized.   Here are a few photos of one of them I witnessed…

Eventually the chrysalis hardens and then becomes transparent as the butterfly gets closer to emerging.  Here are two next to each other that are at different stages…

The chrysalis’ are absolutely beautiful!  You can’t really tell from the poor quality of the above image, but there are gold metallic dots and a gold line on the outside, it’s super cool!  It’s also super cool to realize what is happening inside those little pods.  Just wow.

Just a few moments after I snapped the photo above, it started to emerge…!

It happened so fast!  I tried to take a video of it, but it didn’t really turn out.

And here she is unfurling her new wings…

A few hours later we took her and the other lovely girl (who emerged at the exact same moment!) outside, where I took billions of photos.  Many of which turned out blurry in all of the excitement oops! 🙃

But it was completely and utterly delightful!  Especially because it was experienced with my daughter and my precious grandchildren.  Sorry, not sorry, for sharing all of these…

As you can see, my sweet granddaughter fully enjoyed the butterflies!  😍

At 9 months, my grandson was only mildly interested in the butterflies, and seemed mostly intent on examining the grass and the Creeping Charlie (as you can see in the background in one of the photos above), but here he seemed a bit more interested…

So much more interested, that five seconds after I snapped that photo, he made a grab for it.  Thankfully my daughter was alert and her hand was quicker than his.

But he was barely aware when one of them was exploring his head.  But just in case, my daughter was ready if his hands happened to reach at his head…

Such an adorable little head…

💙

Neither butterfly was in a hurry to leave and even when they finally took flight, they came back to where we were in the yard and one of them landed on my hand for a little while before she took to the air and eventually disappeared from view…

Such an amazing creature.  I appreciated her special little goodbye.  ❤

And I appreciate my beautiful daughter.  I love her so much…

She’s always had sort of an affinity for butterflies and I feel like the universe wanted her to have this experience. She’s been a wonderful foster mom and hopefully with her assistance 13 little monarchs will have a better chance.

🦋

 

Happy Monarch Monday! Wishing you all a beautiful week ahead!

 

 

✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1

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Mandala Monday ~ Noelle

A little flower mandala I created on top of my notebook while I was out on the patio writing and reflecting after my sweet Noelle was here visiting for a few days…

We spent a lot of time outside – she was a very good little helper in the garden…

She really enjoyed helping water my plants on the patio.

But can we talk about how adorable her curly little ponytail is?!  At 3, the child is finally getting hair!  My mom said Noelle reminded her of me as a little girl with a ponytail.  I loved hearing that. 😍  And of course, she also reminded both of us of my daughter.  ❤

Here she is examining and rearranging a few of my rocks…

She’s a real chip off the ol block, that one!  😉

And here she is jumping through the sprinkler…

Cuz hot summer day.  🌞

[By the way, the bathing suit she’s wearing was my daughter’s. 💕]

And here’s another one of her sleeping…

#Creepingonsleepingchildren haha!  I can’t help it, she’s too sweet when she’s sleeping!  Even when she’s kicking me in the ribs.  😉

I love that precious little being more than I could ever say, and it was so wonderful having her here with me for a few days.

I think this mandala I created while thinking of her looks just like her. 💜

 

Thanks for letting me share!

 

Happy Monday, wishing you a wonderful week ahead!

 

 

✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1

Thankful Thursday ~ Angel Face

Angelic face soft and round 

sleeping blissfully without a sound

 

© Julie Rehnelt 2019

This is what I woke up to this morning. 😍 Such a blessing having my sweet granddaughter stay with me for a few days. ❤

 

Wishing you days filled with blessings too!

 

 

✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1

Thankful Thursday

Have I mentioned lately how thankful I am for my precious little Grandchildren?  Oh, I have?  Okay, well is it alright if I mention it again?  😉

I spent the day splashing around with these 3 loves yesterday.  It’s not summer yet, but the temps here sure feel like it.  I’m thankful for cool water, and for something fun and refreshing to do outside on a hot day – I had my feet in that wonderfully cool water too!  It’s the simple things…

 

What are you thankful for today?

 

 

 

✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1

Welcome June

Each morning as I sit down with my coffee and pick up my gratitude journal to write, the first thing I write down is the date.  Dates often evoke certain memories in me.  Does this ever happen to you?  Earlier this morning as I wrote June 1st, 2019, my first thought was “Welcome June!”  I love the beginning of a new month, and I love the month of June!

Here in Minnesota, June typically means that the danger of frost has indeed passed and gardening season truly gets underway.  The temps warm up, but it’s usually not quite up to the harsh heat and humidity of summer yet.  It’s like October in reverse, when the temps begin to cool, but not yet to the point of a hard frost and the days are still warm and sunny.  Not to mention, October is when the leaves start changing. Yep… October and June are my favorite months out of the year.  And September and May are close behind.  But sometimes September is still too hot and May is still too cold.  But May is a freaking bloomfest, so it’s okay that it’s still a bit cold.  I actually don’t mind the cold.  Maybe my favorite months are October and May, but I love June too.  Anyways, I’m rambling now…

Right after I had my “Welcome June!” thought, my very next thought was “June 3rd of this year would have been my 30th wedding anniversary.”  Ugh, didn’t want to go there.  Especially since I’m about to write in my gratitude journal.  But I decided to stop there and allow myself to ponder, to check in with myself and allow whatever emotions to arise.  Needless to say, there were a wide range of emotions, even with it being nearly 10 years since we split …

I’m not going to exhaust myself or bother you in relaying all of them, but I did want to share a text I got from my sister when I shared with her about it, because although it was just a simple thing she said, it felt quite profound to me and it was a good reminder.

Just for a bit of background… The 8:05 I have at the beginning of my text to her is a weird thing between my sister and I.  Usually it’s at 8:14 or 11:27 – our birthday dates that we’ll send a text to each other.  I don’t know why we do it, it’s just a thing we do if we happen to notice the time on the clock.  I almost always get a text from her at 8:14 in the morning, and you’ll notice her reply is at 8:15.  I guarantee you that she picked up her phone at 8:14 to text me, when she saw my text at 8:05 and then it took her a minute to type.  Speaking of the 8:05, once in a while we’ll still put the time at the beginning of other texts for no reason, just to be extra weird…

What I love the most is the end of her text – “Wait, it’s only June 1st, it sounds like you are in the past and the future at the same time… please join me in the present.”  Gosh you guys, how often do we do that?  Seriously!  Still!  Even though we know that the present is where to live and be.  I’m constantly grounding myself in the present moment.

But the mind… it’s always going isn’t it?  And we need our minds.  Haha oh God knows we do!  And I’m thankful for my mind.  I’m thankful it works properly.  And that is not to be taken for granted – some people’s minds don’t work properly, and they suffer so.  Sometimes we can cause ourselves a different type of suffering too, by allowing our minds to transport us into the past or the future and then lingering there too long.

Do you know what I’m realizing right now though that was kinda cool about all this too?  When I said that I allowed myself to ponder, to check in with myself and allow whatever emotions to arise… I was actually more of an observer this time.  And that’s the key!  I’ve heard/read many times that we should allow these things (our emotions/thoughts) to arise, but to be an observer of them.  And that is actually more of how this was.  I am not usually an observer of my emotions, I usually feel every. single. one.  Omygosh am I evolving?  Or maybe it was the text from my sister that snapped me out of it haha!  😉

When I came back to the present moment I noticed a Catbird mewing.  There is this one Catbird who always comes around and kinda sounds like its saying my name… “Jewy, Jewy.”  Sounds like Julie to me.  So then I sent this and my sister, who also has Catbirds at her place too…

I truly lol’d at that last bit!  For a good couple of minutes afterward too!  I love my sister’s sense of humor!  It matches my own!  I’m giggling now…

Maybe that can be a reminder… whenever I heard a Catbird saying my name I can check in with myself and make sure I’m staying in the present moment…

Birds all over the world are calling my name right now!  Hahahaha!

 

Welcome June!  🌼  Here’s to staying in the present…

 

 

 

✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1

 

Flowery Friday

Flowering things lately…

All of which are even more lovely when enjoyed with someone you love…

I’m so grateful for my sweet little granddaughter who shares my love of nature!  And for my adorable little grandson, who, even though he’s only 7 months old, already displays the same.  Not to mention, my lovely daughter who also most definitely shares that affinity…

All of them are so very precious to me.

❤❤❤

 

What’s precious to you today?

 

Wishing you all a beautiful Friday, a wonderful weekend, and lots and lots of love.  Don’t forget to take the time to stop and smell the flowers…

🌸

 

 

✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1

Mandala Monday ~ Memorial

It was at this time of year that my dad went into hospice care here at home, and whenever I came over to visit him I would always stop in the garden first to pick him some lily of the valley.

I remember him holding them up to his nose and closing his eyes and smiling as he breathed in their delightful scent.  I love seeing that memory in my mind’s eye.  It was only a small, simple gesture, on my part, but I think he liked it and that it helped to brighten up his last days.  ❤

So each spring when the lily of the valley are in bloom, I will go out into the garden to collect some to set in a vase next to his urn.

While I was out there gathering them yesterday, I decided to pick a few other things too and then play around with them a bit.  I created this little memorial mandala…

I could not bend those lily of the valley to my will, and I had to leave the stems on them because I planned to put them in a vase when I was done, so the circle got a bit choppy.  Also, it was only after I had already snapped these pictures and then had my batteries die that I realized I should have arranged them so that none of them would have been upside down.  I was just spiraling them around and not thinking.  So all the little bells on the right are upside down.  Oops! 🙃

Oh well, it’s still pretty, and I still very much enjoyed myself.  Sometimes it’s hard when you’re creating something and want it to be just right, but it doesn’t have to be perfect, and I think my Papa would have liked it too!  🌸

With the lily of the valley and the addition of lilacs, this was definitely the most fragrant nature mandala I’ve made thus far.

Mmm… delicious!  😍

My little gatherings… Such pretty colors and textures – they’re even lovely just lying in the box…

I adore every one of these blossoms – yes, even the dandelions!  😉

I’m enjoying experimenting with flowers to create my nature mandalas. 🌸 And making one in memory of my Papa made this one meaningful as well.  ❤

 

Wishing all of you a meaningful Monday and a beautiful week ahead…

 

 

✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1