Thursday, November 7, 2013

30 Photo Days of Gratitude #9 Laughter

Have you laughed today??

A good rock-you-to-your-core belly laugh?

Why not??

Laughter improves your oxygen intake and makes you healthier!

Laughter improves your attitude and makes you happier!

Life is short.

Laugh every day.  This RULE should be there right beside 'brush your teeth' and 'exercise'.

One of the facets of my life that makes me laugh - ALL THE TIME - my grandchildren

This photo is of me and the girls! And is exactly what happens any time one of the three of us yells "GIRL PILE!"

from today:

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

30 Photo Days of Gratitude #8 Light

Today I am grateful for light.

Kind of hard to choose, really... I have a TON of lovely sunrise photos in my archives.  I have a bunch of seriously FAILED attempts at capturing the moon over the river with my little camera....  Stars make me happy when I see them late at night walking the dogs...

 It was thinking of the stars that lead me here to this photo.

Light - to me - brings joy. 

My three lovely daughters attended a painting workshop together where they painted their own versions of Van Gogh's Starry Night.  My girls bring me joy - and light - individually and together!  I love their spirits and their relationships with each other.

From today:

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

30 Days of Gratitude #7 Hope

From the archives:


that little feeling inside that all will be BETTER than well

the thing that keeps you putting one foot in front of the other

the certainty that life will open up and be all you ever dreamed

This photo symbolizes ONE of those moments in time when you truly believe all your problems are over!

Of course, you keep living and learn that things are not quite that easy.  Kind of like "happily ever after".  But that little feeling?  Fortunately HOPE is always there to draw on as long as you look for it.  Hope make it possible some days to get up and go again.

I am grateful for hope.

From the day:

Monday, November 4, 2013

30 Days of Gratitude Photos #6 Strength

From the archives:

Strength.... I'm going to get personal with this one....

I am grateful that I am strong.

Strong enough to weather life's blows

Strong enough to help others' bear their burdens

Strong enough to change my life when needed.

My archive photo is me crossing the finish line of my first race

At age 51... when I embarked on a healthier lifestyle and decided to become an athlete

I am grateful for my strength

(and, oh so grateful for the Lord's strength at my back!)

and later... for my daily photo:

Wow - late for various family emergency reasons but here it is

A photo that represents a tough decision

and gratitude for the strength to make it.

Praying for the strength to remain peaceful...

heartsore, yes, but peaceful about it.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

30 Days of Gratitude Photos # 5 Parents

Part 1 from the archives.....

I cannot adequately express my gratitude here.... without my parents, I wouldn't be here to be grateful!

My parents....  so very young... before they had children...

As we grow, we rely on our parents..... then as we become independent, we criticize them!  We become so much smarter than they ever were..... and, as we live.... we are humbled.  We learn that they are human, after all... and just as weak as we are....   Because life is like that.  We wake up and see their wisdom along with their faults. 

Because without both, we wouldn't be who we are today.

I am blessed beyond measure to HAVE HAD parents.
I am blessed beyond measure to BE a parent.
And I am blessed beyond measure to be part of my children's BECOMING parents

Part 2....  from today  coming later :-)

What a challenge!  Looking for a picture of something in my life today that makes me grateful for parents.....  additionally charged with NOT taking a random photo of a stranger....

I mean I thought about my parents several times as I walked around Savannah with my husband.  I met my nephew and his wife and two little ones so had the privilege of watching them be parents.... and then I also had the opportunity to counsel several of my children through a disagreement - long distance, of course!  And one of my children actually saved the day by helping separate the warring two.... (adult children are not necessarily easier than young ones!)

But I spotted this statue during the day and it made me think of families torn apart

the anguish

the pain

the immeasurable sorrow

of parents torn from children

by (in this case) slavery



I am grateful for what I am privileged to experience.

Knowing how I feel with physical distance between me and my children, I cannot begin to express my pain for children and parents separated.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

30 Days of Gratitude Photos #4 Military

I grew up in a military family.

I am grateful for the opportunity to support my dad as he served even if I was a little child at the time ... I am appreciative of the sacrifices that our servicemen and women make - and also of the sacrifices their families make.... on MY behalf!  Their service is personal - even while they don't know me and I don't know them.  I am grateful.

The first picture I chose is my grandfather

I chose him to represent my family members who served in the armed forces.... my father and brother.. and others up the family tree since our country was formed!

And I am grateful for the ways that our veterans and their families continue to serve their communities... MY community.  I will hunt for a new "today" photo that embodies my gratitude for the military - but I couldn't help but include this one I took last year...

a young man, a veteran marine, all decked out in pink to show support for the breast cancer fight (and to protect all the crazy pinkly-attired people parading through Philadelphia on the 3Day Walk that weekend)

Service.  I am grateful for their service :-)


What I am enjoyiing most about this photo challenge is the opportunity to go through old pictures remembering blessings.... and then again, moving through my day in gratitude with a theme in mind.  It keeps my grateful radar up :-)

This weekend I am in Savannah for a wedding and had some time to kill today.  My husband and I walked around the historic district just to enjoy some time together and this beautiful city.  There are several small island parks and this memorial caught my eye.

Commemorating a Haitian corps fighting for America's freedom in the Revolutionary War.  I think we forget sometimes that America is the grand governmental experiment in freedom.  With all our problems with the government, ours is the one that is evolving and changing and growing, for better or worse.... and people from around the globe desiring freedom from oppression fought to create this country.  I am grateful to all those who helped form and protect this nation!

With gratitude to the military on my mind today... I spied this at lunch...

how we can help those we are grateful to.  I am grateful for ways to give back!  It is good to feel grateful :-)  It is better to give back!

Friday, November 1, 2013

30 Days of Gratitude Photos #3 Life

I'm grateful for life.... and not sure what kind of photo to post...

but my blog title says it best....  the journey....  Life is a journey...

with lots of loved ones coming and going

but I am grateful to have people to love

I have two from the archives for Life.....  a very special person I said good-bye to this year....  one of heaven's new formidable angels

and a very special person I said hello to this year....  our new little angel to love. 

I am grateful for both of them and all of my loved ones in between that are still on the journey with me.

Today, I am starting on an 8 hour ROAD TRIP with my husband to Savannah and am looking forward to a late dinner with extended family.  I will have to look for my photo of LIFE as I travel through today.... so look for more later!


So here it is:

To me, these little plants symbolize hope.  They are in a hostile environment but they don't give up.  They push and push and do what they can every day.  They obviously don't have ideal conditions - but look at them!  They are alive, they are growing.... in spite of the inner city brick walls and traffic and cement.

I am grateful for life because life is HOPE.