Wednesday, August 31, 2011

August 31, 2011

Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain, and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.
-- Ashley Smith

Find the seed at the bottom of your heart and bring forth a flower.
-- Shigenori Kameoka

Blessed are they who see beautiful things in humble places where other people see nothing.
-- Camille Pissarro

today is the final day of my 31 shots in 31 days. today is the final day of searching myself on this 31 day journey. tomorrow i turn 40. this has been a journey of looking back yet also looking forward. it has been a journey of discovery. a journey of looking within. a journey of peacefulness and acceptance. a journey of realizing dreams that are desperate to become realities. of love. of hope. of faith. of family.
tomorrow i begin the next leg of my journey. i wish for so much more. yet this wish is also for so much less.
i am blessed to have had such beautiful and loving people around me for the last 40 years. and even more blessed these people will be in my life, my heart for many yet to come.
my memory is long. my heart is full. my soul is learning to be content and at peace.
my prayer is for what is yet to come.
that i may travel down the road that was laid out before me.
that i will choose the right path.
that if i stumble down the wrong path, i will know i am wiser this time around.
my wish is that these 31 posts may have spoken to and inspired you in some way.
as they have me.

~looking forward to keeping my blog alive~

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

August 30, 2011

simple beauty in the eye of the beholder, my camera
stumbled across this pasture lined with milk thistle and rusty old barbed wire fencing

loved the eyelashes and the sadness in the eyes

i need to find the beautiful things, even the simple ones, within myself, that others see, but i simply never have.


Monday, August 29, 2011

August 29, 2011

Aerodynamically the bumblebee shouldn't be able to fly, but the bumblebee doesn't know that so it goes on flying anyway.
-- Mary Kay Ash
“Do not watch the petals fall from the rose with sadness, know that, like life, things sometimes must fade, before they can bloom again.”

so i say, on these last days of my journey to 40, let the first 40 years of hardship and sadness fade, i have learned form those years and become wiser. it's time for me to bloom again. to keep on flying anyway.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

August 28, 2011

"The horizon leans forward, offering you space to place new steps of change."
Maya Angelou
as photographers, we are always waiting to catch the perfect sunrise/sunset. this was actually taken from inside my van, through the window, during tavel. i snapped about a dozen photos, all of which came out differently. it has to be the most beautiful, intricate and colorful sunset i have every had the honor to lay my eyes upon. i was amazed.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

August 27, 2011

the smallest of God's creations can bring such joy to one's life,
take notice, open your eyes,
they are all around you


Friday, August 26, 2011

August 26, 2011

i immediately became fascinated with the river rock formations on the shady river in Maine. the kids and i took a trek through the cow pastures, into the woods and ended up at the river. such untouched beauty awaited us. one of the first rocks we held was in the shape of a heart. we quickly realized all the hearts we were seeing. i began the heart rock hunt.

this one had to stay in the river, too big.

no one understood, even laughed at me for needing to bring these hearts home.

nature can be cruel. i have been through hurricanes, seen the devastation. but as i spent quiet moments in Maine, camera ready, i realized that nature, even when there are flooding waters & blizzards through the seasons, a peaceful beauty will be left in their wake.

one with any heart at all, would be unable to not allow the natural beauty that was consuming me sink into their very souls.
oh to live in such a place untouched.
to feel the very presence of God right at your fingertips.
to feel the love with every fresh, clean breath you take.
my heart aches to call this place home.
my soul desires to fulfill a new dream that has arisen at it's very core.

this morning i unpacked my stash of beautiful rocks and began sealing them, i need them to look like i just picked them up out of that refreshing, cool water, untouched and beautiful. to remind me of those peaceful, quiet moments. until....

Thursday, August 25, 2011

August 25, 2011

as i continue on this journey of self realization, the word 'forgiveness' keeps repeating itself deep within the depths of my soul. i know i have been forgiven by the one that matters most, but forgiving myself is what haunts me. choices i made long ago that affected the lives of so many others. life unfolded before my eyes. we have now come full circle and i question some of the choices i made. would i change anything? perhaps. i missed out on so many things, so much love, as did you. i pray that you can forgive me for the choice i made so long ago as i work on forgiving myself. as we continue on our new journey, i know we cannot make up for lost time, but pray the days to come will be overflowing with discovery and joy. peace will come to us. love will overcome. we are connected in a way others cannot comprehend. i love you my sweet girl.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

August 17-24, 2011

Well, we made it back from Maine safe & sound, part of me wanted to stay. I fell in love with Vermont too. Surgery was yesterday and went well, now healing & resting for a few days.
So, I shot about 650 photos in the last week. Wish I could post them all at the same time but I can't. So I decided to do a small story line if you will, a few shots from each day to show you our Maine trip. Many other photos will follow on later blog posts.
Here goes....
Beautiful blue skies as we drove north through the states.

Through the mountains we went...

The first of many signs in my adventure to see a moose for the first time...

Mr. Lumberjack in Rumford, ME.

Ashton at the first falls we came accross, lots of photos taken here.
Echo Valley Cabins in Phillips, ME.
We reached our destination!
Gael's amazing campfire to keep us toasty while we roasted marshmallows!
Not so scarey ghost stories!
Quiet moments....
~Smalls Falls~
~Wild Child~
Chillin~literally! I've never felt such cold water in my life!
Long overdue...
Blessed moments I will cherish forever! (This is the drive I saw the moose on, just me & Gael)

Homeward bound....
I felt at home in the mountains again, surrounded by God's glorious splender and creation.
I already long to go back. To get away from here. Perhaps that should be part of my new journey. Praying to bring me to a place that makes me content and at peace.
I learned alot on this trip. About myself and some of the things I need to work on. About my family. Time to reflect.
(Lots more photos to come!)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

August 16, 2011

So, I am frantically getting ready to leave for Maine in the morning. (Packing up the teenagers can be oh so fun!) So excited, as I have never been further north than PA and I will be seeing my beautiful daughter again. Haven't had much time in the last few days to take pictures everyday, and it's been raining. So, I guess I'm changing up my rules a little bit and using photos that have been tucked away in my computer. It's been interesting searching for some. I'd forgotten that I had some great photos hiding away that need to be seen. So today is a photo from last fall, altered a bit with photo shop. It spoke to me. Made me think 'Bountiful Blessings!'.
I can't even begin to list the blessings that God bestows upon me everyday. I know I should stop, pause, look around and appreciate. Offer thanks more often. On this new journey of mine, I pray to learn to stop seeing and focusing on the negative, of what I don't have, what I think I need. And be more aware of what is right here in front of me. After all, when we leave this earth, we will be taking none of this with us.
So how important is that worldly item you think you can't live without? The only thing you can't live without is God.
Food for today's thought!

P.S. I won't have access to blog for a few days. Have to admit I am really going to miss it. But will be back the first of next week with stories and blessings from Maine!!!!!!

Monday, August 15, 2011

August 15, 2011

~Simple Acts Of Kindness~

Simple acts~ make the heart delight. Encouragement. Generosity, no matter the size. Friendship. Pay it forward. Doesn't the Word encourage us to walk in His heart's delight?
Tonight, I hope my small act of kindness will help a dear friend believe in herself and her God given talents. I hope it boosts her confidence and in return she shares God's beauty to the world.
You know who you are my friend.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Pollywog & Pictures

Childhood. Sitting outside my father's darkroom. Waiting for the red light to turn green so I could sneak in to see his latest photos. Lifting each one with tongs out of the developing tray. Hanging them on the line with clothespins. My father loved to take pictures when I was a child. Somewhere along his journey he stopped. I will never know the reason, as he is gone from us. But his memory and love of photography still rings true in my heart.
13 years ago, he wasn't able to experience digital cameras or photoshop. He would be amazed at what we have today. But then again, doesn't he have the best picture of all? The expansive veiw looking down from heaven, watching his loved ones grow and prosper. I guess he doesn't need a camera up there, does he?

Blogging sure has opened my eyes. I am more aware of my surroundings. My goal over the next year is to dig into learning photoshop. The above picture is the first one I have ever worked on. Not bad...but oh the possibilities!!!!!

August 14, 2011

"When our eyes see our hands doing the work of our hearts, the circle of Creation is completed inside us, the doors of our souls fly open, and love steps forth to heal everything in sight."
~Michael Bridge~

I want to see my hands doing God's work. My heart doing God's work. I want to be complete inside. My soul flying freely. Believe and trust that love heals everything.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

August 13, 2011

Trying to find me.

My heart and soul yearn for something more.

A new path.

An awaited journey.

Planned before I was born.

I anxiously wait.


Friday, August 12, 2011

August 12, 2011

A beautiful little, hidden creek I found this morning. I've driven by this spot thousands of times and never noticed it.
The flow of water can be amazingly beautiful and peaceful.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

August 11, 2011

My oldest son is an artist, with great ability, I just don't think he believes in himself yet. He prefers pencil and charcoal. To see him step out of his comfort zone was amazing. A simple canvas, but with a HUGE message for his younger brother.

Hung in a place where his brother will see this message from the book of Ephesians daily. (We all need the Armor of God.)

My prayer is that he stays on this artistic path to glorify God through art and spread His message.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

August 9, 2011

I saw myself in this particular sunflower this morning. I have a tendency to draw myself in. To protect my feelings, to stay safe. I guess some of the hardships I have faced in life have taught me to do just that. A sunflower is beautiful in full bloom. And turns itself towards the sun. When we are in full bloom, total faith, we lift our faces towards the Son. I know when life is hard, struggles overwhelming, my instinct is to fold my petals back down, to cover myself in safety. But I am trying to see and understand that being in full bloom, open and facing the Son, laying my hardships and struggles at His feet, is when I will receive His full nourishment for my soul. Then and only then will I shine beautifully like the sunflower.

Then and only then, after I have opened my heart completely, will I receive the nourishment I need. He is waiting for me to lift open my petals.

Monday, August 8, 2011

August 8, 2011

18 years ago today, my father walked me down the isle, something I am so thankful he was here for, and I promised my soul mate to love him and give myself to him, the good and bad. Our love has stood strong up and over mountains. We climb together. I am so looking forward to spending the rest of my life with my best friend. He brings out the best in me.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

August 7, 2011

May we always strive to see beauty in every living thing. God's beauty is all around us, and His kingdom awaits us. Focusing on the good in people can be difficult when there is so much negativity consuming them. I am around people like this everyday. We all are. But perhaps if we focus on the good, look deep within them and find something beautiful, it may be just the thing to turn their actions, their words around. Make the lost found. We all have opportunity to witness, to share God's love, make a person feel loved and wanted, a person might just need that one small gesture, that one kind word to bless them beyond measure. We are all looking for acceptance from those around us. Not one of us can say we aren't. It's human nature.
So make an effort to share the love of God and truly bless someone today, someone you may normally pass up.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

August 6, 2011

My mother loves 'Queen Anne's Lace'.

As I was driving home from work this morning, I noticed for the first time this summer it is growing in abundance right now. I am loving that part of this 31 shots in 31 days project.
It makes me more aware, draws my eye to little things that we normally zoom by everyday unnoticed.

So I veered off my normal path and took the back roads home, looking for a large patch of them.

Some stages of the flower looked like little bird nests to me, I think they made me smile more than the lacy flower. After a little research I found out that the fruit of the flower is the part that looks like a nest and is sometimes call the 'Bird's Nest Weed'.

Photographing these little lacy flowers this morning brought me great joy, but also sadness. I miss my mother terribly. She is one of my best friends. We finish each others thoughts. We love the same things. When we are together, creative ideas just bounce off of us. ~Love you mama~