Of Rust and Relic

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While the heart often leads, it is the sacred tide of the soul which propels flight.

The eternal clock from which we were birthed cannot be controlled or manipulated. We are who we are.

As we continue to rise from the ashes of rust and relic, let us be the magnificence of our creation. Ancient wisdom buried within will be rebirthed as our truest selves come to light.

The beauty of living is not an immediate knowing, but an accumulation of the experiences of many lifetimes before us. The depth of sharing is a mystery unknown to us. We learn as we live, and we live as we learn.

Meditation Made Simple

To those who complain of the complexity of modern life, he [Henry David Thoreau] might reply,

To those who complain of the complexity of modern life, he [Henry David Thoreau] might reply, “If you want inner peace find it in solitude, not speed, and if you would find yourself, look to the land from which you came and to which you go.” ~Stewart Udall, The Quiet Crisis, 1963

Often it is the simple things in life that pull at my heartstrings. The things I took for granted (and even sometimes scoffed at) as a child now give me immense comfort. To me there is nothing as warming as the feeling of home: Starry skies, the ceaseless call of the whippoorwill, splintered barns with rusty hinges, dirt roads that go on and on, the shocking cold of a mountain stream, the scent of impending rain while in a forest of pine, colorful fields of wildflowers, mulberries eaten straight from the tree…I become immersed in the senses of now.

The Beauty of Appreciation

“When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive—to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love—then make that day count!”  ― Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Being Free

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No matter how “yucca” they say life can get, it’s still quite beautiful. don’t you think?

Nothing has ever spelled this out more perfectly than this weekend. Relay for Life is something I do yearly with my cousins in memory of our loved ones, specifically for me it is in honor of my father and brother. However, this year I was witness to something, or perhaps I should say someone, who touched my heart in a way I’m not sure I can explain. I met a woman whose soul one can’t help but love and be inspired to live with like passion and gratitude. She is a tiny woman with a big heart for life. She has endured more than anyone should go through, not only her own ordeal with cancer but those of multiple close family members. I watched her dance with abandon at the end of a long, hard day. Had I not been so worn out myself I’d have joined her…and I’m not one who usually dances in public. Her zest for life was contagious. Her love poured forth in a beautiful dance of gratitude.

I can honestly say after losing loved ones I thought I didn’t take life for granted, and perhaps I didn’t. But what I know is life is precious; every minute deserves our utmost attention. No matter how much (or little) money was raised or lives connected or healed through this weekend, I have a depth of appreciation for this random act of loving life…these few minutes of heartfelt dancing changed me. I hope this will stay with me and I will dance freely and live to the fullest. I hope I will do my own thing and forget what others might be thinking of me because what really matters is living while I can.

I think true appreciation is knowing where you’ve been, understanding where you are (the absolute vulnerability of it), and accepting you do not own control of your future, yet still have faith, hope, and love for the current moment. Passion for life surfaces when you truly live.

A Zenful Kind Of Day

Five Photos, Five Stories #5

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One thing I adore about First Landing State Park is the Spanish Moss. I love how this tree is draped with it, and the wind blows her fringed scarf to and fro. It was a warm day with a cool breeze, a perfect day for a hike. The birds seemed to be enjoying it as much as we were. Water, wind, sun, trees, swamp, wildlife… I’d say it was totally “zenful”!

I invite Jill Weatherholt to come play. If you wish to play the rules are that you post a picture a day with a story, fiction or non-fiction, or a poem and nominate one fellow blogger a day to participate.

Love Is All You Need

Five Photos, Five Stories #4

"At the touch of love everyone becomes a poet." ― Plato

“At the touch of love everyone becomes a poet.” ― Plato

Virginia is for lovers. This is where I live, and this is our slogan. To me, Virginia has it all…from the mountains to the sea and all in between; who could want for more? Dirt Man and I came across this love sign in the quaint little town of Cape Charles on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. The Love Signs are popping up all over Virginia. This link explains it.I admit it’s a rather cool concept. Does your home state have a similar campaign? Many of my friends go on outings just to discover new Love works. I admit it is a delight to stumble across them. I found one last year at the Norfolk airport. I know where many are, but haven’t gotten to them yet…I hear a fun, new adventure calling my name!

I invite Linda Rae of Cabin Fever Confessions to participate. If you wish to play the rules are that you post a picture a day with a story, fiction or non-fiction, or a poem and nominate one fellow blogger a day to participate.

Love Livin’ It Up!

Five Photos, Five Stories #3

I have found that if you love life, life will love you back - Arthur Rubinstein

I have found that if you love life, life will love you back – Arthur Rubinstein

We pass this reminder as we travel to visit my MIL in the nursing home. We call this hillside Graffiti Rocks. It is a range of rocks along a mountainside on route to a college town. Various messages, names, and school tags are colorfully spray painted on the rocks. “Love life” is good advice any day, but seems to make us feel a bit more grateful for freedom and physical ability as we approach a place where age has diminished those very things.

I invite Manee Truatz to accept the challenge. If you wish to play the rules are that you post a picture a day with a story, fiction or non-fiction, or a poem and nominate one fellow blogger a day to participate.

…And The World Was On Fire

Five Photos, Five Stories #2

“A large drop of sun lingered on the horizon and then dripped over and was gone, and the sky was brilliant over the spot where it had gone, and a torn cloud, like a bloody rag, hung over the spot of its going. And dusk crept over the sky from the eastern horizon, and darkness crept over the land from the east.”  ― John Steinbeck, The Grapes of Wrath

“A large drop of sun lingered on the horizon and then dripped over and was gone, and the sky was brilliant over the spot where it had gone, and a torn cloud, like a bloody rag, hung over the spot of its going. And dusk crept over the sky from the eastern horizon, and darkness crept over the land from the east.” ― John Steinbeck, The Grapes of Wrath

Dirt Man and I often watch and photograph sunsets. This particular evening the sun appeared to chomp the end of the pier and then the ocean swallowed the sun. As the sun disappeared the sky and sea exploded. The flames of the sky reflected in the water and the world appeared to be on fire. We watched the canvas before us burn as we listened to the waves lap against the shore and turn nature’s fire into ash.

Carol at Wanderings of an Elusive Mind nominated me to play Five Photos, Five Stories. I invite Becky at Chicken Wire & Paper Flowers to participate. If you wish to play the rules are that you post a picture a day with a story, fiction or non-fiction, or a poem and nominate one fellow blogger a day to participate.

A Tam Good Time!

Five Photos, Five Stories #1

“One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain.”  ― Bob Marley

“One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain.” ― Bob Marley

Dirt Man and I have had the pleasure of seeing the Tams twice. Both times we stumbled upon the park concerts. The first time was several years ago in Norfolk, This time was this past Saturday night for Beach Music Week in Virginia Beach. We met my cousin and his wife for dinner at a beach restaurant and followed the music along the boardwalk afterward. Music unites all ages, genders, races, and economic statuses. There were arms swinging, feet tapping, bodies swaying, voices singing, and smiles spreading! What a beautiful sight! A great time was had by all! These guys can move…they are ageless!

I’d like to invite Barbara at Silver in the Barn to play along. If you wish to play, the rules are that you post a picture a day with a story, fiction or non-fiction, or a poem and nominate one fellow blogger a day to participate.

The Crazy Gene…Or Is It Simply A Great Imagination?

Why do I love clouds? Because you can't save a cloud like you can save a leaf or a flower or a rock — clouds are now. ~Terri Guillemets

Why do I love clouds? Because you can’t save a cloud like you can save a leaf or a flower or a rock — clouds are now. ~Terri Guillemets

Do you ever just sit and watch the clouds? On Mother’s Day my mom and I sat on her front porch and did just that. What an incredible relaxing day we had! However, I discovered another commonality between the two of us. I have this rather strange attribute; I tend to see faces in odd places like clouds, trees, rocks, mountains, etc… The amazing coincidence is my mother and I saw the same formations such as a woman kissing a man’s chin. We would say what we were looking at and the other could point it out in the sky. My sister thought we were crazy…I told her she needed to exercise her imagination.

I have Himalayan salt lamps throughout my house, and I see faces from every angle. I see the same faces every time I look at it. I suppose perceiving patterns visually is just something I do. Is it a habit? Is it genetic?

What I did not know is there is a term for this phenomenon – Pareidolia. I read about it on several sights. It is the visual form of matrixing. It is said those who have it have an evolutionary advantage over others. However, another sight questioned whether it is borderline schizophrenic. Hmmm….I choose to believe I have a great imagination rather than to think I’m crazy (and don’t go off on me for using a politically incorrect term!) …then again, some of the so called crazies of the world have been proven to be the most intelligent and imaginative of all –That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it! Just please don’t administer the Rorschach Inkblot Test to me because I fear my results, ha!

I will dare to ask the question: What do you see in the clouds in the above photo?

Be The Peace You Want

“All blame is a waste of time. No matter how much fault you find with another, and regardless of how much you blame him, it will not change you.” ~ Wayne Dyer

We may not be able to control what awaits us when we cross the bridge, but what we do with what we find is entirely our choice.

We may not be able to control what awaits us when we cross the bridge, but what we do with what we find is entirely our choice.

This week has been one of unrest. The media is pointing fingers. Society at large blames politics, religion, race, or anyone but themselves. It’s not a pretty sight and it’s not a good feeling. Many factors add up to a certain point in time, but ultimately we make choices. Casting blame, making excuses, nor stating opinions changes anything. Be the change you want to see in the world. One person might not change the entire world; but if you are the change you want it can start with you.

We are each responsible for our actions or inaction. We daily make choices to hurt or heal. Accountability starts with me and you.

Personally, I’m going to concentrate on maintaining my own inner peace amongst the chaos and negativity.

“In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt