Friday, January 29, 2010

Sunshine Award

Birthday Roses - Nikon D40 with 55 mm lens

Sharon from Mana Moon is at it again! She has awarded me the delightful Sunshine Award. And then a few hours later I got a note from Shel of Pics by Shel that she also named me in her award. I don't know what I did to be so lucky to be awarded twice, but I hope I can live up to it!


I can't tell you how much I love getting emails about these awards. It's the little things that count, people.

So here's my list for the Sunshine Award.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Gone To The Birds

Breakfast with the Pelicans - Sony Cybershot

Since the pelicans are still hanging around, I thought I'd post more photos. Because what's more fun than pelicans?

Apparently the water is so cold the fish are basically stunned motionless, so the pelicans just sit on the surface scooping them up. Then don't even need to dive for them, like they usually do. Lazy pelicans. Soon to be fat pelicans at the rate they're going.

If you click on the photos to enlarge you can seem them gobbling up the fish. Funny birds.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010


Glowing Orchid - Nikon D40 with 55 mm lens

I am shamelessly borrowing an idea from Hula Seventy wherein I will make a list every week until January 2011. Because I love to make lists. Not useful to-do lists, but things like Top 5 All-Time Guitar Gods. (Being a music fan, you'll see that list soon.) These lists may be funny, or serious, or silly, or anything in between. This is going to be fun.

I'll start things off with something simple: Favorite Colors (because I love color like a baby loves her mama.) In no particular order:

1. Intense magenta: regal and noble.
2. Shimmery pale pink: the perfect shade of eyeshadow.
3. Chocolate: excellent home decorating shade
4. Eggplant purple: a little goes a long way
5. Bright White: it makes all colors look better (I know white isn't technically a color, but hey, it's my list)
6. Metallic candy-apple red: nothing sexier.
7. Deep midnight blue: the color of secrets.

Look for my lists every Tuesday!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Inspiration Avenue: Mystique

Foggy Pelicans, January 22, 2009 - Sony Cybershot

Here on the west coast of Florida we rarely get fog during the day. But due to the current cold water, warm air circumstance, a giant bank of sea fog rolled in off the Gulf yesterday. These pelicans didn't seem to mind, though.

Don't you think Foggy Pelican sounds like the name of a great old British pub? Maybe I watch too many movies.

Please stop by Inspiration Avenue and see the amazing work being submitted for the Weekly Challenge.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Quote of the Day

Winter Palms - Nikon D40 with 55mm lens

"Where ever you go, go with all your heart."

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Inspiration Avenue: Pocket Full of Sunshine

Sunshine Bench - Nikon D40 with 55mm lens

I love sunshine. I live in Florida, so it's kind of a requirement. Naturally, I was very excited for this week's challenge. One of my favorite things about natural light is the way it filters through trees. I especially like the "pockets" on the ferns behind this bench, under that banyan tree.

Head on over to Inspiration Avenue and check out those fantastic submissions.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Amazing Friends: Plumrose Lane

"Remembrance" blog background from Plumrose Lane

My incredible, magical, talented friend Sharon (of Mana Moon Studios) has a new venture and I am so excited to tell you about it. You already know she creates some of the most gorgeous jewelry around. Now she's taking that creativity to the world of graphic design. Just look at that extraordinary blog background up there! Her new project is Plumrose Lane. (I love that name!) There's a blog here and an Etsy shop here.

This is "Rose Garden", my personal favorite.

So please go visit Plumrose Lane. Not only is Sharon an amazing artist, she's also one of the nicest people I've ever known. And if that's not reason enough to go buy some blog banners, I don't know what is!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Inspiration Avenue Weekly Challenge: Wonderland

Ancient Pier, Gulf of Mexico - Nikon D40 with 55 mm lens

Since I don't have an underwater camera, I can't show you a photo of my wonderland. But I can get close. The Gulf of Mexico is a magical wonderland. I have lived near its coast all my life. In the spring and summer my idea of a perfect day is grabbing my mask and heading to the beach. I don't snorkel, I just hold my breath and dive for shells, sand dollars and to watch the fish. On occasion, there might even be a curious manatee about.

I am not one for sunbathing, too passive. I like to be swimming, feeling that warm, silky water, the gentle waves, watching dolphins far in the distance, too far out for me to reach. But that's okay. Often times the dolphins are not far from sharks, and I'm not that adventurous. But I do love to watch the dolphins jump high out of the water, racing after their elusive lunch. The Gulf of Mexico is quite a wonderland, indeed.
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Please visit Inspiration Avenue to see the beautiful submissions.

Monday, January 4, 2010

A New Year

Mabel's Rose Garden, 12/2009 - Nikon D40 with 55 mm lens

Here we are at the beginning of a new year and I feel like "putting a few things down on paper", something I used to say before blogs entered the world.

What I Learned In 2009

:: I learned, actually I remembered, that I should always trust myself. Somewhere along the way I stopped trusting my opinion and my judgement. I was looking to others I deemed smarter or more experienced for answers, ideas, opinions. I stopped thinking my opinions and feelings had worth because surely someone else must know more than I do. I'm just a small-town girl from nowhere. What do I know? But, I figured out that every time I listened to my own inner voice, not only was the decision better for me and felt more like my own truth, but situations and problems worked out better. Which leads into my next lesson. . .

:: I have to live my life for myself, according to my own plans and dreams. There is no shortage of people in my life (and I'm sure this is the same for most of you) telling me what to do. Most of them mean well, and I appreciate sound advice as much as the next girl. But this is my journey. I have to do what makes sense for me, and what speaks to my values and ideals, not anyone else's. This was a very hard lesson to learn because I am a good daughter, friend, employee, and I like to make people happy. But when I started sacrificing my own identity, I knew it had to stop.

:: I also learned that if someone is rude, nasty, mean, arrogant, spiteful, argumentative or negative, it really has nothing to do with me. I once thought that I had done something to trigger this behavior, or that it was incumbent upon me to change their attitude. Both are wrong. People behave as they do for a thousand reasons, and while I try to be compassionate for whatever that individual is going through, I don't have to pick it up and carry it. It's their load, not mine.

:: Eight hours of sleep per night is mandatory. Whatever else in the world has to wait, it can wait. Eight hours makes such a difference in my energy, mood, health.

What I Hope For 2010

:: I hope to be a bit lighter. I tend to take things far too seriously and sink into deep, heavy thoughts, often times getting lost. I'd like to laugh more.

:: I would like to finally start a yoga/meditation practice. I think it would make such a difference in my chaotic, racing-90 mph-mind. I crave calm.

:: I hope I can leave everyone I meet with a smile. It seems like such a small thing, but I appreciate when someone does it for me. I'd like to do that for others.

:: I hope that I can give up the food guilt and just eat what I love and love what I eat. Food and I have a complicated relationship going back ages (me and every other woman, it seems). But at almost 34 years old I'm just tired of it all. Eating fresh, good-quality food and paying attention to what I eat seems to be the answer. I want to give that a try.

I am borrowing this quote my friend Tee posted which seems to sum it up for me: "There will always be people who don't, won't get it - what you're doing, what you're saying, what you're believing in. Politely push those throngs to the side and make room for the ones who do. Waste no more time on wishing."