It’s a beautiful day here in Connecticut and the call of the wren by his nest and the rush of the water over the falls into our pond drew me outside.  I found that the fish were having a good time playing tag, so I brought the camera out and tried to capture them.   They were swimming so fast that it was not an easy task, but I eventually caught all five of them in one shot and mostly in focus.  Thank goodness for digital photography where you can just delete the bad and out-of-focus pictures.  I’m not positive about the identification, but I think from left to right they are — Hoover, Half and Half, Lady, Hot Lips (white one in front), and Junior.

fish June 19, 2008

And as I was trying to catch the fish near the surface I accidentally took a beautiful picture of the blooming water hyacinths.  The reflection of the lavender flowers in the dark water is almost prettier than the flowers themselves.  One of the fish just disappears into the ripples from the waterfall on the left.


Yes — it’s a beautiful day to be out here with all this.

Weekends at the pond

Weekends at our home bring us into the outdoors, working on the various flower beds, the house (yes, those gutters were full of oak tree droppings according to hubby), the veggie garden,etc. But, the best of all is working around and in the pond and observing the parts of mother nature that we share it with. The pond aquaculture has stabilized a bit from early spring and the slimy algae is all but gone. Of course, it’s being replaced by string algae, but that’s more easily removed from the pond and does not obscure the clarity of the water like the slimy stuff does. The new fish are growing more tame — coming nearer and nearer my hand at feeding time. Yesterday, the bravest one actually took a piece of food directly from my fingertips. He is the most brave and seems to be the most hungry, swimming quickly around and sucking up a lot of food pellets. I’ve named him Hoover (after the vacuum, not the president). The others are coming directly to my hand as I place it in the water but they insist on waiting until the food has been released and they can grab it off the top of the water. It’s really fun to watch them feed and my patience is being rewarded by increasingly friendly fish. We feed them at nearly the same time every day and they are quickly learning about telling time too. They start swimming around near the feeding rock and checking it out starting about an hour or so before the appointed time.

The waterlilies are blooming — absolutely beautiful — one plant is white, the other yellow.

white waterlily

And Phinneas is back this year. Hubby named him Gurk after he first appeared this spring. But he is so large and so tame and his markings are so familiar that I am pretty sure that he is Phinneas back for his third year with us here at the pond. He appeared at the water’s edge the very first weekend the pond was full two years ago this fall. Who knows where he came from or how he knew there was a pond being built that he could call home, but there he was. You can see in this photo how his coloring matches the green of the algae covered rock he is sitting on at the water’s edge. No wonder I cannot find him at times when I’m out visiting the pond. When I go out to feed the fish, I call to them and talk to them to coax them out from under the floating plants. Gurk/Phinneas almost always starts talking to me and responding to my voice. Hubby has read, and is convinced, that if I go to the pet store and get some live insects that I could train him to come to my hand for feeding also. Hmmmmmmmmmm…….

Phinneas / GurkHere\'s lookin at ya\'

So, while others get into their cars for long drives to their weekend spots, we will be gleefully weekending at the pond.

I’ve Got a Pebble in My Hand

I am a musician and also love to listen to various kinds of music.  One of my favorites is country music (being from a farm in the Midwest, it’s sort of in my blood).  Today I was listening to a country station while doing laundry and heard a new song.  As is a very typical theme for country music, it was about lost love or almost-lost love.  And one of the lines in it was about having a pebble “in my hand” and throwing it into a river.   Somehow I missed the connection so I’ll have to listen to the song again — because somehow that pebble was supposed to indicate whether the almost-lost love was going to come back or not.

Anyway, what caught my attention was the “I’ve got a pebble in my hand” line.  One of my thoughts when I debated starting blogging was writing about the effects our actions have on others and how we go about our business in this world often not thinking about those effects.  Like a pebble dropped into a pond (or thrown into a river) we leave ripples behind us long after we have left the area.

Each morning when I wake up —  I have a “pebble” in my hand.   The things I do and say during the day as I interact with others (or not) determine what kind of ripples my pebble leaves behind.  Each day I have the opportunity to leave good ripples behind me.   I can think about what I say and how it will affect people.  I can think about my actions and how a smile or kind word can brighten someone’s day and perhaps that person will in turn be in a positive mood and brighten someone else’s day — the ripple effect.

In the case of the environment — I have a huge pebble in my hand each time I use my car to go someplace.  Today, I parked in a remote lot, loaded up my bag and walked to all my errands in town rather than driving to them.  It took a lot longer, but there were several ripple effects.  I ran into a friend on the street that I wouldn’t have had time to talk to if I’d been driving by.  I got more exercise than I would have.   And I used a little less of that $4.45 per gallon gasoline.  Many good ripple effects of my actions.

I have a pebble in my hand — I will think about that each morning when I get up — the possibilities — I have a pebble in my hand —

About face!

I was sitting on a bench on our front step, deeply engrossed in the final chapters of a mystery novel, when something running through our front yard caught my attention. When I looked up, this little fella’ was running back and forth, leaping up in the air, and making full use of the yard as his playground. He didn’t even notice when I jumped up and ran inside for the camera. When I came back out he was headed directly toward where I was standing, but his mother barked at him from further down the yard and he changed his mind and direction just as I snapped the picture.

fawn 5/29/08

I followed doe and fawn down into the lower yard, but they were too quick for me and headed into the woods. The deer that live here are very predictable in their habits and in the times they walk through the property. So, next time I’ll have my camera with me and perhaps can catch a photo before the about face.

Turtle Crossing

Tuesday is ladies golf day and the league I belong to arranges tee times for members for the morning.  Today’s round, while was not spectacular, was particularly enjoyable.  I was part of a wonderful foursome — pleasant people — all having fun regardless of the golf shots — courteous golfers — and all appreciative to be out on a relaxing round of golf on such a spectacular day.  The “oh I wish I had my camera” moment ( and mine is almost always with me but wasn’t today ) came on the 15th hole.   A turtle was crossing the fairway right in the line of play for our second shots.  So, one of our foursome drove up, parked her cart, and gently herded the turtle toward the pond area she was pointed towards.  The turtle obligingly walked along quite briskly (for a turtle) as she was gently talked to and encouraged.  Note — I’m assuming the turtle was a she — who knows why.  Safely getting her to the rough near the pond — we all proceeded up the fairway.   A good day was had by all.   But, I really need to remember that camera.   A priceless photo op was missed today — along with a few short putts!

Memorial Day 2008

Finally, a weekend with beautiful weather here in Connecticut. And a perfect day for a visit to the Field of Flags. The First Congregational Church here in our town is hosting the traveling display called the Field of Flags. There is one small flag placed for each American who died in the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. The flags have been placed on the corner on the church grounds at a prominent intersection in our town.

flags on the corner

I was unable to get all of the flags into the same photo, there are way too many.

flags ripple in the breeze

A signboard containing all of the names travels with the display as does the count of the number of flags displayed.

never forget

As of May 15th, when this display was installed on the church corner, there were 4576 flags on display.

Crazy Fish

Our new fish are still somewhat shy, but in the last couple of days have begun to be a little less afraid of us when we are near the pond. For the last two days they have been swimming swiftly around the pond in circles around the plants, through the cave, past the skimmer, under the floating plants, under the waterfall, and just around and around. It sometimes looks like they are playing tag, but I cannot figure out what the rules are. Hubby has read that this fast swimming and what appears to be chasing of each other is spawning behavior. I call them my crazy fish. It does look like they are having glorious fun swimming in their new pond. When I am out near the pond they won’t come very near the top. I did manage to catch all 5 of them together in the bottom (with my camera of course!).

crazy fish

And, just for fun, I sat the ceramic frogs next to the frog spitter and they are now out there keeping an eye on my crazy fish. The ceramic frogs were birthday gifts for hubby and me for our birthdays last year — made by my sister. The middle one looks a little fierce, doesn’t he? Perhaps we can have her make us a smiley frog this year.

frog lineup

Pink snow

Spring has been very cold here in Connecticut but this has seemed to make the blooming trees hang onto their beauty for longer than usual. Well, today — they are really letting go of their “beauty”. We have a Kwanzan cherry right outside our front door. This means it is also right next to our pond and waterfalls. We were supposed to have a storm today with lots of rain, but all we are getting is the wind. The big puffy pink blooms are being blown off the cherry tree in enormous quantities.

big pink

There is “pink snow” everywhere — sidewalks, flower beds, front steps, my bench, my flower pots, and unfortunately, the pond.

pink snow

The petals from the blooms, and in some cases entire blooms, are filling the pond surface, being drawn into the skimmer for the pump, and eventually getting so thick that they are stopping the flow of water into the pump. Talk about your ripple effects!

pink snow floats on water

Hubby turned off the pump this morning as he left for work and I headed off to a quilt guild meeting. But now I’m back home having used the leaf blower to blow away some of the “snow’, used the net to skim the top of the pond, and turned the pump back on. I’ve set a timer and every 20 minutes I go out and check the skimmer net — turn off the pump — clear the net — turn on the pump — come back in and reset the timer. I’m using this as an excuse to sit in the living room where I can hear the waterfalls and knit — claiming I cannot get anything else done in 20 minute intervals. So my summer vest is making good progress (I may even get it done before summer) and the pond is being taken care of. Note that, during this whole time, the fish are nowhere to be seen. They are still quite shy in their new home and I’m guessing that they are at the bottom of the pond in their cave wondering why the waterfall keeps going off and back on.

summer vest front

Here’s the vest front — in progress — ready for armhole shaping.


Par putt on hole # 5

Tuesdays are ladies day at the golf course. I had my camera along to photograph various holes for the new course brochure. Couldn’t resist this photo of where my approach shot landed on the 485 yard par 5. A 3-inch putt for par! Fun!


Welcome to the Rippled Effects blog. Here you will find some random thoughts, some notes on my various activities (knitting, quilting, stained glass, music, gardening, photography, ……. I could go on and on) and some musings on the effects of our actions, big and small, as they ripple through the world around us.

And to start things off, here is today’s photo — the “launching” of the new fish into our garden pond. After a disastrous winter where all the fish in the pond came floating to the top of the pond, one by one, we have added six new fish to the pond today. Here some of them are — Half-and-Half being the third one out of the plastic bag into the pond.

Tomorrow, we will be anxiously checking on our new BFFs (Best Fish Friends) to watch their adjustment to their new home. It is wonderful to see fish in the pond again. Welcome to your new home guys!