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…

childhood, coping, faith, growing old, home, live and learn, lizards, memories, moments, nature, photography

Lovely woods…

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep.
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

From Robert Frost’s Stopping by woods on a Snowy Evening

This favorite poem came to mind as soon as I saw the above image in my camera. But the thoughts that followed involve the only other Frost poem that I know (and love)…

From the Road not Taken…

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

It is way too easy to dwell on the notion that if only you’d chosen that other path then everything would have been perfect. The assumption that if one choice hasn’t been perfect, then the other choice would have been perfect.  It took me longer than it should have to figure out that I was still looking for happily ever after even at this late date.  And when you look at the lead up to the words we all remember, that he would be telling this in ages and ages hence, perhaps it has always been tempting to look back on your life to look for places where a different choice might have made a difference.  I wonder what life might have been like had I not left home at such a young age. I’ve never felt connected to any of the places I’ve lived, and never fail to have that feeling of being home when I’m back in Massachusetts.  But there isn’t any point in wondering such things.  That ship has sailed.

I need to think of a saying that is framed on the wall at my daughter’s house…

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Or something I saw on her Facebook page…

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When did my daughter get so wise?