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"I tried once to open too many doors at a time, it was unproductive and confusing.
I just learned the last lesson, Dad. I'm supposed to open just one at a time, and only when I reach them along the path, this 'hike' we are taking. That's when the key fits, and opens the lock perfectly, every time. Thank you, Dad. I love you, and miss you. I am blessed with an amazing husband now, he holds my hand as we walk along paths too. We are climbing a little steeper now, with more effort, and thinner air. But I'm not worried. I am looking up. I am living in the moment, being now. Because when we get to the next door, along our path, I know, Dad, . . . that key is going to fit, perfectly!"

excerpt from Pony, 6/6/2013 post
© ruth follmann

Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs License

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Throw 2013 an Old Bone!

My Rockman is closing out 2013 in a beautiful way! He is throwing this soon to be past year an old bone, cases of them to be precise! We can now visually appreciate, on a daily basis, the unique wonder of Florida's fossil past, some of it millions of years old.

Rockman created shadow box dioramas, portraying the many origins, of his 'golden shovel' Joshua Creek finds! A recent dig boasted eleven different species in one spot! There have been 22 species found at this dig site! Rockman's finds include: Giant Wooly Mammoth, Prehistoric Whale teeth and vertebrate, Birds, Camel, Deer, Dire Wolf, Giant Capybara, Giant Armadillo, Giant Beaver, Glyptodont, Giant Ground Sloth, Three-Toed Horse, Prehistoric Horses, Alligator, Tapir, Peccary, Manatee/Dugong, Turtle shell and leg spurs, Snake vertebrate, Fish mouth plates (including Puffer fish) and ballast/bladder bones, Prehistoric Sharks including, Megalodon, Tiger Sharks, and Hemipristis ~ Hemis/Snaggletooth Sharks,fossilized Lemon, Bull, Dusky, Mako, Tiger and Grey Sharks, Drum Fish teeth, Barracuda teeth, Gar Fish Scales, Stingray barbs, mouthparts, and dermal plates, Crab pinchers, Clams, Sea Biscuits,and Corprolite/fossilized dung! Whew!

Here are links to outstanding fossil sites:

He really wants a Mastodon tooth specimen from Joshua Creek for the new year! I am looking forward finding Cow Shark teeth or Dolphin ear bones at Venice Beach!

I am so proud of his incredible collection and knowledge built in such a short time! WOW! ~is the only way to describe all his focused hard work. These finds do not come on a silver platter. They involve wilderness hikes for vine scratching miles, hours of digging in river bed gravel, exposure to the elements, snakes, alligators, possible stagnant water illness (bacteria, amoebas, etc. yikes!, detail inspection of each shovelful of riverbed muck, and back breaking hard work!

But Rockman's legendary record time success has drawn attention from fossil hunters worldwide. He now takes interested folks on fossil hunting tours, buddies with archaeologists,and makes his own fossil hunting tools and supplies! Last night he revisited a skill he mastered years ago: fossil restoration. Rockman uses craft store polymer clay to restore large prehistoric shark teeth that resurfaced to our times broken or otherwise damaged. I cannot see where the restoration begins and the original tooth ends! I am constantly amazed at his ingenuity and perseverance with this amazing hobby!

His adventures have paired him with other fossil hunters who are also divers. He hopes to join them soon, on the East coast, for ocean fossil dives!

I am so proud of Mr. Follmann's decision not to wait until he was too old to enjoy his life. He told me years ago he planned to move from the harsh winters of Illinois to discover the adventures he craved in Florida, I proposed marriage to ally my support and sunshine stay, and the rest is history! I remain grateful that he is patient with the biggest living fossil he has ever discovered: ME! I am humbled everyday by my husband's kindness, generosity, and much needed sense of humor! I may not be swinging a pick ax, but I have found my treasure! Sometimes it seems like I have followed the steps of a Pirate's lost treasure map, 20 paces to a tree, turn at a rock, WAA! Gratefully, my treasure has always been unearthed and brilliantly clear. I am one of those lucky women who is married to a 'great guy'! (yep, that's me!) I never take it for granted. It is never fossil old. This is my showcase, not only for this past year, but with good fortune~for years to come. I smile to see the treasure for me is not behind glass in a case, but behind blue eyes, in the Boy Scout grin of my loving, adventurous husband, Mr. Ken~
Happy New Year, everyone!
We wish you all blessings & peace~

“Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.”
~ Søren Kierkegaard

Rubber Baby Buggy Bonsais

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I took a break as a new Rawtarian to plant some seeds in lieu of consuming them! The beautiful Ficus Religiosa you see to the left was a welcome gift from my oldest brilliant banker daughter years ago. She was right on the $ to pick out this tree! I can't hurt it! Now 'mama' Ficus Religiosa, the sacred fig, will be watching over the bonsai nursery. In addition to a new batch of her same genus; Casuarina cunninghamiana seedlings are tucked in their new soil bed next door! This is the she-oak of the evergreen species sporting red flowers and grey-green needles.

Indulging in a Florida native, a Cornus Florida or Flowering Dogwood is set to go as well!

There is something very humbling in planting a tree seed. Though the Dogwood seeds seemed an oval pea size, the others were nearly detectable! Fragile finds to forest floor ~ then oxygenating, how could we not love trees? With care, these trees may humble to share a small cultured place. I look forward to the process, certain their growth will teach me as well.

"The tree which moves some to tears of joy is in the eyes of others only a green thing that stands in the way. Some see nature all ridicule and deformity... and some scarce see nature at all. But to the eyes of the man of imagination, nature is imagination itself."
~William Blake

"Never, ever give up!"

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I am so excited that the local birds in Cape Coral have found our relocated conch bird feeder! Mr. Follmann shortened the pvc pipe so I can see the birds feed from my yoga/study room window. I am so glad we never gave up on filling this feeder with seed!

This bold fellow is a male Red-bellied Woodpecker. He seems very young! Here is a link to his bio.

I hope to be able to enjoy more views from the yoga mat as soon as I am medically cleared. The heavy work I do as a health care worker has placed me on a short term disability with spine injury. :(

But after viewing Diana Nyad's motivational speech on TED talk, I found myself resolute to reach my goal of being a registered nurse.

Diana's amazing story flushes out any puny excuses my psyche may have come up with! She inspired me so much by saying she has no doubt that she is at her peak now at the age of 64!

When I am shuffling around to prevent my leg from locking up, i picture her singing John Lennon's song Imagine 1000 times while swimming in the black of black ocean alone. It is then that I know I can do this!

My beautiful youngest daughter just graduated with her RN, BSN. Our family is busting buttons proud of her hard work and dedication to reach her goal by the age of 23! She is my lights on the shore of Key West! It may take me years, but it will seem like hours with all the support and love I have from my family around me! Plus my daughter has offered to help me with my homework!

I agree with Diana when she says these achievements are done with the effort of a team. My team is the strength of the Follmann Family Picnic, my loving husband, my beautiful daughter, mother, brother, and dearest best friend Sheri. How can I not continue but to turn my head and take another stroke forward in this ocean we call life?

"Imagine there's no heaven ~
it's easy if you try~"

Diana Nyad-TED Talk

Happy Holiday Moblog!

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Mr. Ken and I enjoyed a beautiful and charming Holiday celebration with the Follmann Family! Delicious cuisine, engaging conversation, and intuitive gift giving filled the afternoon! My sis-in-law is a mind reader! I really can't remember a lovelier Holiday!

We wish you peace and stolen moments from this era's fast pace for kindness, learning, and care for each other in your homes, and extending to our world family~

a gift for the children~
an international children's digital library with over 4600 books

a gift for the family~

LOVE Khan Academy! They just taught me how to code!

"Always keep an open mind and a compassionate heart."

~Phil Jackson


Happy Holiday, Everyone! :)

Thankful He Keeps Gluing Together The Pieces

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On the close of this day meant for thankful reflection, my husband's epoxy ways are glued in my appreciative mind. Despite what scatters or shatters, he stands ready to repair and remedy. You see him here rebuilding a complete turtle shell. His recent dig discoveries amaze with a tapir molar, camel tooth, megalodon tooth, deer hind leg joint, and . . . Such sleuth has paired him to work with an archeologist and share fossil facts with folks from around the world! His fossil hunting success is renowned! Mr. Ken joins Florida Fossil Hunters in building a portfolio of artifact finds as well. Today, my reflections settle thankful that he stays near to help pick up the pieces in life at the end of the day. Just as with his fossil finds, he quietly takes in what needs to be done, dabs any needed glue, and helps create a renewed day. Such patience and solidity come from a strong family ~ the Follmann Family Picnic; and wow, did they deliver an epic Holiday! Tables of delicious food were only surpassed by the great company. My heart warms, as my stomach is still full, during a night shift work day break, on this Thankful Holiday ~ blessings everyone! I know I am~

extra credit~inspired by an eco-artist

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i hope you enjoy my extra credit essay. maybe it will inspire some this weekend to go out and propagate!

Thank you, Ron Finley!

Ruth Follmann
Professor @#$&
ENC 1101-128
23 November 2013
Word Count: 472

Graffiti Gardening: The New Eco-Art

Years before I viewed the TED talk by Ron Finley, I was a guerilla gardener. My friends and children knew of my seed sowing ways. Having borrowed a concept from a fad known as ‘reverse stealing’, which is putting something into an environment vs. removing it; I would plant flowers and vegetables in the soil of public owned space. This idea stems back to Americana’s Johnny Appleseed as well. Guerilla gardening is the new graffiti eco-art. Few detect this graffiti activity when tiny seeds are inconspicuously dropped into public soil. Dollar store clearance sales provide the needed seeds. In the past, seeds rang up at the low cost of thirteen cents a pack. When digging the dirt, no residual, toxic spray paint smell will ‘give you away’. Nature takes care of the growing process with sunshine and rain.

Along those lines, Mr. Finley, a true graffiti artist from South Central L.A., sports not only breathtaking painted street artwork, but his curbside public gardens to boot. He describes the combination of food and flowers as his medium of choice in creating a live canvas. Having designed gardens of this aesthetic and edible nature, my heart warmed to hear Mr. Finley is teaching kids to do the same. My personal gardens were themed and true Eden states. Soon, my enthusiasm grew past my own plots. I began to carry pockets of seed packets and spy for suitable land prey. Public lands suffer no harm from another beautiful flower or surprise vegetable strategically placed. Trees can be graffiti gardened as well. I have even added little touches like bird feeders to public areas. Surprisingly, paid caretakers continue to refill said feeders with supplies of bird seed!

I encourage everyone to graffiti garden. The same ‘rush’ is earned by re-facing a public place. A smile is gained when you pat the earth down, knowing something beautiful, despite all this world’s problems, will soon grow in at least one more place. So while reverse stealing can be tricky, redressing store mannequins without security spotting your chagrin, or the flashing blue and red lights of vandalism’s ticket may interrupt your spray can street art ways, guerilla gardening offers only an upside. Plants have been giving us a life lesson all along. Put down some deep roots. Keep reaching up. Work within the resources you have been given. Give back not only vitality and beauty to life, but sustaining wisdom, brief and potent, encapsulated like seeds. Plant that wisdom where you receptively can. If we all do this literally, and in the soil of aspiring minds, imagine the garden we will create.

© ruth follmann

brightening my dim light

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I like when trinomials are perfect squares! :)
23rd Oct 2013, 01:53   | tags:comments (0)

sunrise saturday

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I took an extra moment on the way into work to mark a new chapter. Eleven days from now, joining my husband and countless others, I will be working on the night shift. Mr. Follmann and I are excited to have a similar schedule and more free time together. I am thankful to my manager and director for making this change seamless. I stopped to smile at this morning's sunrise, a new day, a new job~ whew ... It's going to be OK! :)