Sunday, December 30, 2012

wishing you a new year filled with hope...

Smiles from the threshold of the year to come,
Whispering 'it will be happier'...”
― Alfred Tennyson

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

post christmas color blast

are you feeling a bit fuzzy around the edges?

if so, here's a splash of color to wake you up.

did it work yet?

oh well, maybe a second cup of tea will do the trick. 
or you could just take a nap...

Monday, December 24, 2012

love and joy, come to you ...

... and light, too.
And hope — always hope.
Isn't that what Christmas is all about?

The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; 
on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned. 
Isaiah 9:2

Thursday, December 20, 2012

pro tempore

the sign says it's 77 degrees,
and spanish moss drips from live oaks
as the young man hoists himself onto his truck bed
to play his guitar.
a pair of grebes chuckle together,
floating on still waters,
unaware of any dire emergencies,
any past sorrows or future woes.
they just paddle on,

Monday, December 17, 2012

thoughts on christmas and suffering.

This is about as much snow as Florida pine cones ever see.

Many of us don't even have a fireplace chimney for Santa. (But we still have milk and cookies!)

We do have beautiful birds though, visitors from more frigid climes...

... and the making of childhood ornaments goes on, even in places with more sand than snow.

This is baby Jesus in a manger made from a sea shell. I don't think he minds...

Like many of you, I've been overwhelmed by the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary. We decorated our Christmas tree yesterday (late this year, because we've all been sick with the flu.) As I hung ornaments from various stages of my daughter's childhood, my thoughts turned to the parents who will never see their precious child's beautiful face again in this lifetime. I thought about the brave young woman, just a few years older than my own daughter, who gave her life so her students could live. There is no greater love. I don't have any wise words or answers to offer. Like many of you, my family and I are engaged in our own struggles to overcome the daily obstacles that life throws our way. But today, we have each other. I can hug my husband. I can hug my daughter. And so I will. Because this moment is all we have.

When you arise in the morning think of what a privilege it is to be alive, to think, to enjoy, to love ... 

― Marcus AureliusMeditations

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

the zombie plague and other matters.

I seem to have contracted a cold/flu virus that is extremely annoying. You know that "walking dead" feeling? My brain is especially fuzzy, which leads me to suspect that I may have been infected with a zombie plague. On the other hand, I don't remember being bitten by any zombies lately, so it's probably just a virus after all. In any case, I can't seem to focus on anything more than a warm cup of tea and mindless television.  So forgive me if I become even worse at visiting your blogs than I have been already. I'll catch up with you soon, okay?

Oh, I just realized the title of this post says, "and other matters." There really aren't any (or perhaps there are too many to recount?) I just liked the way it sounded for a title :)

Sunday, December 2, 2012

a friend in morning sun.

( I love the way the light brings out her whiskers.)

Friday, November 23, 2012

morning thoughts

the morning chill
has me toasting my feet
by the fire (okay, it's a space heater)
but i can dream, right?

blue jays wake the others,
too early —
(even the doves are grumpy)
and planes drone lazily overhead,
in the clouds above the pines.

the pine tree has a dying branch.
it isn't sad, though —
it's going out blazing fire.

i like that.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

for those whose light be low on the horizon...

"I pray for you, that all your misgivings will be melted to thanksgivings. Remember that the shadow a thing casts often far exceeds the size of the thing itself (especially if the light be low on the horizon) and though some future fear may strut brave darkness as you approach, the thing itself will be but a speck when seen from beyond. Oh that He would restore us often with that 'aspect from beyond,' to see a thing as He sees it, to remember that He dealeth with us as with sons."  

— Jim Elliot

Monday, November 19, 2012

i am the last autumn leaf

i am the last autumn leaf,
holding on by a thread to the vine.
the green is all drained out of me,
i am dried up and waiting
for the end of life as i know it.

yet, the cold winds have painted
beauty on this husk —
vivid color that belies the inner
pain, and leads to wonder
in the eyes of passers by.

i cannot see it,
a leaf is blind.
still, i let go, trusting
that the season of this dying
will have an end,
and spring will come

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

because i need reminding...

Never say there is nothing beautiful in the world anymore. There is always something to make you wonder in the shape of a tree, the trembling of a leaf. 
— Albert Schweitzer 

Friday, November 9, 2012

all you need is love

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.
1 John 4:18 

Love, love, love
Love, love, love
Love, love, love

There's nothing you can do that can't be done
Nothing you can sing that can't be sung
Nothing you can say but you can learn how to play the game
It's easy

Nothing you can make that can't be made
No one you can save that can't be saved
Nothing you can do but you can learn how to be you in time
It's easy

All you need is love
All you need is love
All you need is love, love
Love is all you need

Love, love, love
Love, love, love
Love, love, love

All you need is love
All you need is love
All you need is love, love
Love is all you need

Nothing you can know that isn't known
Nothing you can see that isn't shown
Nowhere you can be that isn't where you're meant to be
It's easy

All you need is love
All you need is love
All you need is love, love
Love is all you need

— John Lennon

Monday, November 5, 2012

some good words for uncertain times.

“What would come, would come...and you would have to meet it, when it did.”
J.K. RowlingHarry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Thursday, November 1, 2012

just for a change from bird photos...

The weather has turned chilly, and my dog thinks it's time to hibernate.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

and you thought pelicans only caught fish in their mouths.

The other birds called him "big mouth" all year long, but on Halloween, he ruled.

"trick or treat!"

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

how is a beach like a beauty salon?

It's grooming time for the flock...

...and bedhead just isn't the look he's going for.

Sometimes beauty is pain...

... queue the violins, please!

"Don't hate me because I'm beautiful..."

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

did thoreau know this guy?

Any fool can make a rule, and any fool will mind it. 
― Henry David Thoreau

Monday, October 15, 2012

anne morrow lindbergh, on suffering...

“I do not believe that sheer suffering teaches. If suffering alone taught, all the world would be wise, since everyone suffers. To suffering must be added mourning, understanding, patience, love, openness, and the willingness to remain vulnerable.”
― Anne Morrow LindberghGift from the Sea

Thursday, October 11, 2012

what does a lizard have in common with jim morrison?

once upon  a time,
a young lizard decided to experience life
on the other side of the door.
he was lithe and brown,
with a racing stripe down his back
and the arrogance of all young things.

he made it past the threshold 
and onto the rug 
in the middle of the floor,
before he was spotted 
by the old (but still beautiful)
woman who lived in the house.
being fond of lizards, (but not of the bugs they eat)
she resolved to help him escape.

he decided to hide under the bookshelf
(the dust alone would have smothered him)
but at the last minute he leapt onto a basket
of dog toys, opting to perch on
a stuffed tiger. it was a wise decision, 
for the old (but still beautiful)
mistress of the house carried the basket of toys
out to the garden,
where she proceeded to snap photos
for her blog.

and so the young lizard,
having learned nothing from his experience
except that he looked exceptionally well
next to striped velour,
lived, if not happily ever after,
at least long enough
to say, along with jim morrison,
"i am the lizard king. i can do anything."

Monday, October 8, 2012

sea, sky, and soul.

 There is one spectacle grander than the sea, that is the sky; 
there is one spectacle grander than the sky, that is the interior of the soul. 
Victor Hugo

Monday, October 1, 2012

just down the road a piece, in paradise.

sometimes you get to hang your hat in a different place,

and take a walk in paradise.

sometimes a cup of tea in morning light can work wonders...

... or a good book and a spot of shade,

or a nap on cozy pillows,

 or a swim with friends.

 sometimes a sunset is a fragment of glory,

to remind us we are not alone.

 and sometimes treasures abound, when we least expect them.

 Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, 
who does not change like shifting shadows.  
James 1:17

Saturday, September 22, 2012

i may not know the answers, but i can still sing...

A bird does not sing because it has an answer. It sings because it has a song. 
Chinese Proverb

(this is a downy woodpecker)

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

back porch on a rainy morning.

there are these gifts,
unexpected, undeserved,
even —
waking to thunder in the distance,
rain dripping from the gutters,
a camera to hand
and eyes to see...