Bits and pieces. I've jotted down things that have caught my attention. I believe it's better to share what I've seen than to keep it to myself, so here goes.

I miss the cross. The cross that was on the side of the hill east of Yocemento along Old U.S. Highway 40. It was made of rocks piled in the shape of a cross. Through the years, it had been taken care of by youth groups.

They kept the cross clean of weeds and even white-washed it at times. In fact, it was visible from Interstate 70. I know 4-H clubs and church youth groups had taken very good care of the cross that now has been neglected. I miss seeing this sign of love for our Lord shining on the hill.

But there is a beautiful cross standing in the Bemis pasture. The natural chalk rocks are positioned so, as you drive by it, it is the shape of a cross from all directions. A grand cross for all to view, it also is located on Old U.S. Highway 40 west of Yocemento.

In Ellis, there is a vacant lot completely covered with white blossoms. It's a shame there isn't a use for bindweed. I remember my dad saying "When milk cows eat bindweed, their milk tastes like vanilla." I can't remember if it did or not.

Nothing seems to discourage that plant. It will grow anywhere, rain or no rain. You might think you have finally killed it -- but surprise, surprise -- it comes back.

Another determined plant is the grass growing in the cracks in the street. I always smile at the little green runners, the ribbons of grass curling along on General Custer Road. It is colorful and must be really tough, surviving cars driving over it daily. I hope no one comes along with weed killer and zaps these pretty trails of grass.

The yucca plants were magnificent when they bloomed in front of Hays Medical Center this spring. I remember when the yucca plants bloomed in our pastures, the cattle ate the blooms.

Chocolate. I enjoy a piece of chocolate now and then, but I'm not a chocoholic. I don't dream in chocolate, as one lady commented. But I actually saw a car in Hays the color of melted chocolate, shiny and looking yummy, good enough to eat. I'm not kidding.

The locust insect. Cicadas sing their nightly chorus each evening as I sit outside on the front porch when it begins to cool off. I watch the kittens come out from under the porch to play. They are so cute, but it's no touch. Maybe, if I'm patient, they will come to me when they figure out I'm the one who feeds them.

There is a deer crossing sign on Old U.S. Highway 40 just before reaching Yocemento from the west. Someone has attached a reflector to the nose of the deer on the sign. It shines like Rudolph's red nose. Gives me a reason to smile.

Nothing tastes better than a cool glass of water on a hot day.

Can you name our five senses? They are sight, smell, taste, touch and hearing. Some think we also have a sixth sense, the power of perception.

Well, this quote makes me believe we should add two more senses to the list. "Common sense and the sense of humor are the same thing, moving at different speeds. A sense of humor is just common sense, dancing," said William James.

In Ellis, on the corner of 11th and Fauteux streets, there was a house where a friend of mother's lived. The house had been empty for years. I thought of Mom every time I went by it. Last week I drove by -- it's now an empty lot. It struck me how weird it looked. The past is gone. It gave me an empty, sad feeling. Yes -- life goes on.

My daughter made sure my name will last forever -- at least on Mars. On June 7, my name was added to a microchip to be carried on NASA's Mars science laboratory rover. It is expected to arrive on the planet between Aug. 6 and 20, 2012. Isn't that cool? I thank Shirleen for entering my name.

I'm tempted to pull over to study the art on the train cars. When they go flying by I can't figure out what has been painted in large, grouped-together letters. When the train is stopped, I'll have to find a spot to park to decipher this graffiti-type of art.

My tablet has more miscellaneous thoughts I'll share with you another time. It's said happiness will never come to those who fail to appreciate what they already have. We need to notice and enjoy the small things around us. We live in a marvelous, interesting world.