Friday, November 27, 2009

What do you really see?

A beautiful sunset in Key West, Florida, a golden sky, gorgeous sun, a large ship anchored, and birds and pelicans resting at shores edge. But what caught my eye was the helicopter on board. At first I didn't see it,


The gift of giving.
"It is more blessed to give than to receive".
 "When we give, we get back tenfold".
We hear it everywhere, especially this time of year.  The declarations that encourage us to give. Do they really? Or do they make us feel guilty for not giving when we can, or when we could? Are you a giver?  Do you give willingly, or because it's the right thing to do? Look deep within yourself. When you give, do

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Relationships INSIDE an Elevator

A strange topic, but one that we've all experienced. There is something about stepping into an elevator alone, you own the space.  It's your minute of thinking, of last minute prepping of the next activity once you step out of it.  Perhaps a time of reflection, or a place that holds you captured momentarily, taking a few more minutes of your valuable time. You hit the button of

Friday, November 20, 2009

When you're HOME

Home. What makes home really home? What is that feeling of taking a deep sigh and feeling relaxed as soon as you walk in the door? That moment when you say "It's good to be home".  Home reflects you. It smells like you, reflects the colors that you like, is comfortable, and everywhere there are things that make you happy. And of course it's very true, that it's not things, but people that make home a safe and happy place to be.  But let's talk about people another time. Do you have a favorite place to go to or sit in when you come home?  A chair, a corner? When you've been gone all day or days, even weeks at a time, what is the

Locked Regrets

Are there places in your heart that you have locked up from both yourself and others? How long have we locked up our emotions? Seems like most of us  have done some locking and chaining and bolting, sometimes double checking to be sure it's secure. That locked place, a place where you used to go often, then less, ignoring it for periods of time, but not forgetting. Do you go there sometimes still? Is there something in particular that sparks a desire to go to that place? You know it's there, you know what is inside. A place that is heavy, emotional or overwhelming for you? Why do you keep it locked?  When is it time to truly be who you are, with confidence? To celebrate the positive that has come from the hardship. Have you not

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Memories and Christmas Songs

Today I was shopping in a store with music was playing in the background, something that we hear but pay little attention to. We can go in and out of shops not even realizing that we have been listening to music. Oft times we're glad to get outside because it wasn't something we enjoyed listening to.  There has been a lot of study put into the types of music that will encourage shoppers to linger, feel relaxed and energized  in order to put them in the mood to purchase more. Not to forget that we celebrate Hanukkah and Kwanza at this season as well. But that is not what I felt today. Today, they were playing Christmas songs, too early for me, I'd rather they wait until after Thanksgiving, but it was playing regardless of my preferences. I found myself

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Adam and Eve and what?

My little Adam and Eve. I've had this trinket box for many years. I bought it at a quaint gift shop because I thought it was cute, quirky and artsy, and said something about coming into this world just as we are, and growing into ourselves everyday from that point onward. A great reminder. Everyday is a new beginning a chance to start fresh. About keeping a sense of humor with ourselves and life. A conversation piece if you will. Well, I used to display it on a side table, in the family room. Another piece of artwork to enjoy. Then over time, I began to see that a few people were actually uncomfortable with it being there, as if this small clay and wooden box exposed them somehow. Was it a

Monday, November 16, 2009

The Art of being a Storyteller

Are you a storyteller? Long ago when I was a little girl, we would visit friends of my parents, and their elderly mother lived with them. I was excited to go there and my smile grew the minute I saw her. She was a tiny woman, traditional european in her dress, dark stockings, dark clothes that seemed a bit too big for her little body. A gold cross hanging from her neck, the chain catching a sparkle from the light as she moved. Small gold earrings with a semi precious stone dangling from them. She often wore a fringed shawl which fascinated

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Language Awakening

Some of you know and speak more than one language. Some know one single language, and are content with that. Some of you are learning more languages. Bravo to you. For some it is easy, for others a struggle. I grew up speaking German, my parents coming here as immigrants after WWII. Both with only a 6th grade education, because war has no time for such luxuries as education. And although they spoke many languages albeit some better than others, German, Yugoslavian, Hungarian, Polish, Russian  they now had to learn one more, English. They were older, exhausted from the war, in a country where nothing was familiar,and found it difficult. I often was embarassed by their accents as a child, and proud of their accomplishments when I was older.They spoke German with my

Saturday, November 14, 2009

To honor our military and families

How many times have you heard "I support our military, and their families, and all they do for us"? Many times right? I'm sure you have said these words yourself. I know I have. But how do we really support them? What do we really do besides a nice phrase of thanks, not even to them, but just in general? Our military offer everything they have to protect us and serve us in any manner they are called upon to do. Leave home,

Friday, November 13, 2009

Masquerade of paper vs real

There's a difference between drinking for thirst or pleasure. When you're really thirsty, all you care about is doing some serious quenching, almost any liquid, in just about any container, will suffice just fine. But when you want to enjoy your drink, paper and plastic just don't get it for me. I don't like drinking out of paper cups. Makes your lips and tongue kind of dry and the cup feels flimsy to hold in your hand.. I find my tongue and fingers playing with the seam that holds it together. Hot is so very hot when holding paper or cardboard, even with the cute little "sleeves" that often come with the drinks. Not a fan of styrofoam either, especially those little magnetic ball shaped, can't get them off pieces of styrofoam fragments, that hang on to everything. How many of them have we ingested? There is the tendency to want to bite a chunk out of the styrofoam cup too. Can make a passive person aggressive just drinking out

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Loved ones from the past

There are days that seem to bring an abundance of  memories from loved ones in our past. You have had days like this I know. Our memory can be jarred by so much. A photo, an old movie, a song, words, seasons of the year, a conversation. It can be just about anything. Most days it makes us appreciate what is good in our lives. It makes it hard to understand why things are the way they are with much in the world. How easy it is to be hateful and opinionated against other people and their ways. How sometimes it seems that people need to have a target for that anger. And how little it takes to try to be understanding, appreciative, keep a sense

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Orca whales doing lunch.

It was a privilege to have my camera capture these Orca whales while kayaking in Alaska. It was late morning, and they were herding for salmon  (there were thousands and thousands of salmon). They weren't the slightest bit interested or curious about us. The thrill of being so close and being able to observe them made my heart pound and my stomach flutter. Afterwards I felt exhilerated and had a smile all across my face. I had never been in a kayak before, nor did I know that the water was 600 feet deep and 47 degrees F. I felt secure with the tour guides and tried to nurture the sense of adventure instead of the fear.

Ocean life and it's treasures

This is ocean life in it's element.  Always moving and changing. I was happy to get such a great photo. I didn't even see the starfish in the background until later. Since water covers so much of the earth's surface, the pleasure of exploration can be vast. Nature gives us beauty on earth, in the water, in the sky and underground. It's good to be adventurous and see and experience more of what life has to offer than our own backyard.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Human sexuality and nature

Ever notice that lots of things in the universe have sexual or erotic characteristics? I was waking along the beach, appreciating the ocean, the sand, the international port, the people and ships and all that comes with it. This object that I photographed struck me as interesting and beautiful. Not functioning in it's original intent, but laying on it's side, half out of the water,once used for large ships along the docks. When I looked over my photos later on, I noticed that it had an erotic interest to it. And as I shared it with others, amongst other "touristy type pictures", there was always a

Monday, November 9, 2009

Adirondack Chairs

I've always thought that these are such great looking chairs. They are in my backyard scattered in pairs along the little lake. They remind me of tall glasses of lemonade, sugar cookies, white linen clothes, lazy summer days, gentle breezes on moonlit nights with the sound of crickets in the background, peacefulness and romance. I seldom sit in them, even though they evoke

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Awakening A MEMORY

Memory. That word alone gives life. How can a memory that has sat idle and forgotten be brought back so vividly and powerful? That memory in the corner of your mind's attic, dusty and  stored long ago. I have recently reconnected with an old friend from high school and nursing school. We were bridesmaids in each other's weddings and shared hours of studying, laughter and positive energy. Constraints of time, family, jobs, children and life in general drew us apart, small pieces at a time. We had lost touch as happens so often. But when we reconnected, a flood of memories and happenings came back, visual images, conversations, trips, and emotions all mingled together. It made me wonder

Friday, November 6, 2009

A moment of attentiveness

Sometimes it's something very simple that catches our attention. A detail that often gets overlooked because we don't have time, and to get our attention things have to sometimes be grandeous and loud. We can see Beauty in the moment but only if we choose to live in that very moment. Here, I like the veins on the delicate pink flowers and the darkness of the background of the photo. It's kind of like knowing someone for a long time, and then you have that moment when everything changes. Has that happened to you?  It's almost as if you are truly seeing

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Spiders - terrifyingly fascinating

This was a spider colony that I almost walked by and overlooked. Once I saw them, I was overwhelmed with the vast area they covered. Out in the open and yet hidden at the same time.I have forgotten the name of the species. It was in the Florida Keys and there were actually thousands of them all along the waters edge, intermingled with bushes, trees and wild grasses. YES, I did say thousands! Although I am terrified by spiders, I find the strength and intricate details of their webs intriquing. They are relentless at rebuilding and I have never seen so many together with webs overlapping in all my life. Other walkerbys stopped to ask what we were photographing and soon became as fascinated as we were.Nature is amazing.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

SWANS at Home

There aren't very many animals that portray peace, elegance and love quite like the swan can. Ask someone to name a pair of animals that signify love, and I'm sure swans will be high on the list. Gliding effortlessly across the water, a swan's beautiful image is often reflected in the glasslike surface of the lake. They come back every year and nest and sometimes have fuzzy babies. They are attentive parents. I was so excited to first see them. I enjoy watching their activity in my backyard and learning about them. To my amazement this type of swan is actually very territorial and aggressive. With a very large wing span, about 8 feet across, and the sound of the flapping wings when they fly, so strong and powerful, they can be quite intimidating. Who knew? LOL

Casual and relaxed

I liked my friends shoes, thought they were fun. His stance was casual and relaxed. I love it when people can be themselves and have a good time.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Peaceful moment in the morning, summertime at Seward,Alaska. The mountains, waters, animals and scenery are unlike anywhere I have gone before. Nature takes hold of you and draws you in.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Domestic enjoyments for a Day

Sometimes I feel like being domestic. Like today. Most days I am glad to have all the modern conveniences especially about things like cooking. To open and heat up can be a fast and rewarding process when you are hungry. After years of preparing meals for a family with children, it's nice not to have to do that on a daily routine basis. Although to be honest, most days I didn't mind, and hoped that I made nutritious meals that were tasty too. I think I had a decent success rate, but you'd have to ask my kids their opinion to be sure. When you have to do something all the time it can feel like a chore, when you do it occassionaly it can seem like a pleasure. I do like to go to the store for fresh produce and ingredients and then decide on something to make based on the season's choices. I enjoy taking my time at the store and appreciating the process. Then coming home and putting some music on to play while I cut and chop and simmer and add ingredients to tast. I am not much of a