Author Archives: marionowen

Photo essay of Quonset huts and a prayer to end all wars

On a nearby island, a boat ride away from my home on Kodiak Island, is a “village” of Quonset huts. These buildings once served as barracks for soldiers fighting the Aleutian Campaign during World War II. But today their corrugated metal … Continue reading

Posted in Essays and inspirations, Making life better, Our world, Photography | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

When a bumblebee is caught in the rain

After three days of rain and fog I went out to the garden to inspect the damage. Clumps of parsley, once proud mini-forests, were flattened to the ground. Carrot tops were tangled into one…bad…hair…day. I walked, squish-squish, over to a … Continue reading

Posted in Essays and inspirations, Our world | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 15 Comments

On green bananas and how to avoid regrets

It’s a guessing game to decide what fruit to set out for our B&B guests. Apples? Not many people indulge in apples these days. Grapes and cherries? They’re usually appreciated. Bananas? Ugh. Bananas bring out the fussiness in humans. If … Continue reading

Posted in Essays and inspirations, Life coming full circle | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Mara and the blue marble

There’s a special patch of sand called Glass Beach on the east side of Kodiak Island, Alaska where hundreds, if not thousands, of colorful bits of glass temporarily rest among pebbles and shreds of kelp. Whenever I visit Glass Beach … Continue reading

Posted in Essays and inspirations, Where curiosity leads me | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

When I grow up, I want to write like Josephine Robertson

As a couple, they’ve climbed all 53 peaks above 14,000 feet which are known as the “Fourteeners.”  Jan’s spice cookies are famous and she’s written a lovely book called, “The Magnificent Mountain Women: Adventures in the Colorado Rockies.” Now in … Continue reading

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The bumblebee and the crocus

It was a warm spring day, way up north in Kodiak, Alaska, and I was scrambling to take care of garden chores. (Spring happens that way here: One day it’s winter; the next day we’re experiencing 15 hours of daylight and it’s … Continue reading

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Work smart. Save time: Spring cleaning tips for the house and garden (you can thank me later)

Unlike breathing, there are many life skills that we’re left to figure out on our own. Pumping gas, uncorking a bottle of wine or even… housecleaning. Thank God for my sister Mara. For many years, she worked as a house sitter and caregiver, which means having coffee … Continue reading

Posted in Making life better, Organic gardening | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

How a medical emergency launched my new love affair with plants

It all began when a medical emergency cut short our vacation on October 22, 2016. Soon afterwards, I was invited to be the keynote speaker at the Alaska State Master Gardeners Conference on April 22, 2017. Earth Day. I knew I couldn’t … Continue reading

Posted in Diet and health, Essays and inspirations, Food and recipes | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Is every snowflake perfect? What about us?

The glow from a small porch light defined my coordinates on the globe: A trampled patch of snow, the size of a manhole cover, located between a sliding glass door and an outhouse ‘privacy’ tent. Inside the tent, my camera equipment … Continue reading

Posted in Essays and inspirations, Photography | Tagged , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Ansel and the Snowflake

It was 8 PM and I’d been trying to photograph snowflakes all day. But try as I might, the wind was howling and I could only “harvest” bits and pieces blown off the roof. Feeling a little discouraged—realizing that this … Continue reading

Posted in Essays and inspirations, Photography | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 28 Comments