a second look, blessings, faith, growing old, life, loneliness, nature, photography, unintended images, weather

Father Fleming said Mass today.  I was happy to see him since he’s been my favorite priest once I moved to Florida and started going to church again after many, many years.  My part time job has caused me to vary which mass I went to each week, but I seemed to have a knack for catching Father Fleming’s mass, and it has always made me happy to see him.  But I hadn’t seen him in a while, and then had been away on vacation, so when I saw him today I was struck with how frail he is, noticeably more frail than before, and I always worry as he climbs the few stairs to the alter.  He is in his 80’s, and is soft spoken, you have to concentrate when he speaks.  His sermons are always gentle and encouraging.  He should preach to children.  He pokes fun at himself, and says he was a bit of a devil as a boy, and he admits to having doubts here and there.  I was feeling quite sad as I drove away, wondering how much longer we will have him with us, and turned the corner to discover black clouds ahead in the east, and a beautiful rainbow that took my breath away.  I pulled onto a parking lot and got the camera out of the trunk and managed to take a few pictures before the heaven’s opened.  Only when I saw the photos in the computer did I see the double rainbow.  I hope that rainbow was for Father Fleming, he’s earned it…8-5rainbow1

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connections, coping, courage, faith, finding my way, friends, gardens, go with the flow, growing old, life goes on, loneliness, perseverance, photography

I went to a garden party…

“I went to a garden party to reminisce with my old friends,
A chance to share old memories and play our songs again.
When I got to the garden party they all knew my name,
No one recognized me I didn’t look the same.”

“But it’s all right now,
I learned my lesson well.
You see you can’t please everyone,
So you got to please yourself.”

Maybe Ricky Nelson knew what he wanted out of life, how to please himself, but I’m not as lucky.  I have no idea what I want the rest of my life to look like so I just keep putting one foot in front of the other and hope it comes to me one of these days.

I took these pictures at the little local botanical garden this morning.  I was in search of butterflies but the sprinklers were on in the butterfly garden and I guess that kept them away.  But these structures caught my eye, and ‘garden party’ started playing in my head, and then I started thinking, about life and it’s twists and turns.  Maybe ‘blowing in the wind’ would have been a more appropriate song for my current state of mind…5-10HDRshed25-10HDRshed-35-17castle5-17iris5-17tilebench5-17tilerug5-17whiteflowers5-17budda5-17peekabooWhat’s the phrase these days, ‘fake it ’til you make it’…

blessings, faith, flowers, photography, technology

Merry Christmas…

This blog was started without a lot of forethought on my part.  I took a class on how to start a blog and the framework was in place by the end of the class, so I began to write.  And write some more.  What I have neglected to do is thank each and every person who has read the blog, and especially those of you who have taken time to like and/or comment.  I do thank you all, from the bottom of my heart.  Technology is sometimes the bane of my existence, and yet I am amazed to see that my words and pictures have found their way to people in many more countries than I could ever imagine.  That is mind boggling to me, and humbling.

May we all find peace and love in our hearts this Christmas season, and may the new year be good to all of us.  Merry Christmas…

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blessings, coping, courage, eavesdropping, faith, family, healing, home, memories, photography, Pine Island, sunset

Connections…

Low tide let me down.  I was sure that low tide was always going to be the secret to a great sunset with lots of photo ops.  But not tonight.  All the sea gulls were too far out at the water’s edge to photograph, and no cute families playing either.  But the sunset itself was pretty…

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And an interesting conversation between some women who were sitting in beach chairs behind me.  Turns out they are sisters, but they only found each other last year.  One had come from California to visit the other one who lives here in Florida.  In the year since they have found each other they each have found new family members they didn’t know, or at the very least had never met.  They had the same father but different mothers, and didn’t grow up together, but they had similar mannerisms and sounded alike.  They were so happy to be in each other’s lives, it was heartwarming to listen to.  But probably still rude to eavesdropping.

My mother had eight siblings, and after the war they scattered to the four winds.  I had met all of them here and there when I was very young, so we weren’t lost to each other.  But in moving to Florida, and choosing the Nature Coast because of the proximity to my son when he lived here, I discovered family.  It seems that my mother’s sisters who had moved to Florida were right in this area.  Along with a cousin and his extended family, plus two more of the siblings who spend winters here.  For many reasons I have felt as if I was ‘supposed’ to land here at this stage of life.  Finding family here was an unexpected surprise, and another reason to feel as if being here was meant to be…

 

 

birds, faith, Florida wildlife, life, loneliness, moments, natural wonders, nature, perseverance, photography, Pine Island, simple things, sunset

What would make a person…

… return to Pine Island night after night, in hopes of a spectacular sunset?  Or some other  activity that would be an interesting photo op?  This is why…

On the drive over I decided to try shutter priority in the camera in hopes of sharper shots, and was immediately rewarded when I found Willets in the crowd, and cute girls to practice on.

The spectators were gathering…

And the sunset…

And then the afterglow, that got more and more spectacular…

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And the feature photo in the header of this post was taken from the parking lot as I was trying to talk myself into leaving.  Once in a while there is a sunset like this, and that’s why I’m out there almost every single night.  And why I believe…

coping, death, faith, fun, grief, life, life goes on, live and learn, moments, on closer examination, photography, Pine Island, sunset, the big picture

Lost opportunities…

It used to be that when I sat in this recliner in the dark and quiet of the morning, with a nice hot cup of coffee at my side, I’d just think.  About anything.  I probably couldn’t even tell you what I had been thinking about five minutes after the thoughts passed through my mind.  It was important time to me since so often there is no time to think during a busy day.  Not anymore.  Now I go through the hundreds of photos I took the day before to see what I can do with them.  Hopefully I have a few good ones, and some days, like today, I kick myself for the lost opportunities from the day before.  Like going to Pine Island for the sunset and finding tightrope walkers doing their thing.  That was fun to watch, but why do I think I have to take photos on the sly?  Think of the photos I might have gotten if I’d have asked permission, and my guess is that they wouldn’t have objected since they set up their ‘rope’, actually a very heavy rubber band sort of thing, in public.  I think I ought to make myself an ID sort of badge to wear and pretend I want to interview people for publication.  Do they really need to know it’s just little old me in my recliner?1030tightrope11030tightrope2Now these people didn’t need me to intrude on them, although they may have liked to tell their story.  Almost as soon as I saw them with the balloons I knew that they were going to let them go as a memorial to someone.  An environmentalist probably would object since those balloons are going to wind up somewhere in nature, but I understand the sentiment involved.  Soon enough they gathered at the water’s edge and let them go, which is when I noticed that they had a card or note attached.  Sad for them, but I hope it gave them some comfort to do that.1030memorial1030balloonsliftoffActually the term ‘lost opportunity’ comes from work.  One of the bakers told me that when you haven’t produced the products fast enough, either gotten them baked or gotten them packaged and out onto the sales floor, that’s lost opportunity because most people won’t want to bother you to ask for what they are looking for.  I’m not sure that I’ve ever thought of that term before he mentioned it, but I can sure think of some lost opportunities in my life that I wish I’d recognized when they were happening and then I  might have changed the outcome.  Sigh…