Monday, April 30, 2012

Life in the Middle

This week, Janice from Prompt Addicts, a flickr group I participate in, challenged us to place our subject smack dab in the middle of our images.  I have been so focused on making sure my subjects are not smack in the middle due to the lessons learned about composition, ie: off-center creates more interest etc etc that to be able to shed this concentration has been almost liberating.  And along with this challenge more thoughts on the subject of "middle" have cropped up in my mind....cropped, funny I can't seem to go too far from photography terms.  I have lived a fairly "middle" life....

  • I grew up in a "middle"-class family
  • Always made "middle" kinda grades, not all A's & B's and not all D's & F's
  • In high school, I was not the most popular, but not the least either
  • I now live in a "mid"-priced home, not over the top, but not the other side of the tracks type
  • I live in the "Mid"-west
  • My politics are "middle" of the road, I go for the man & the issues, not so much the party.
  • I have the perfect "middle" America family, one husband, one daughter, one son and one dog
  • I managed to climb to "middle" management when I worked for AT&T
  • I am awake far too often in the "middle" of the night
  • I am sorta (not quite) "mid"-height
  • I always wear shoes with "mid" heels, would absolutely fall over if I put on those high heels
It's not so bad being in the middle, in fact it is quite comfortable, not complacent, just comfortable.  If I was at the top of my class, the most popular, lived in the best neighborhood, made it to president of the company I do believe the stress would be over-whelming to remain "the best, and on the "top".  I'll stick with the middle and be happy.

These are my "middle" images....It rained last night so I jumped at the opportunity to photograph some raindrops...

Caught this of my brother one day at the beach....he looks so troubled, wonder what he was thinking....??  Then again, he may have been rubbing the sea and salt from his eyes...who knows?

Cattle in the middle of beach country...(if you look closely, the beach is beyond the fence in the background)

Sacred Heart Church, Galveston, TX - it would probably be a good idea of we Christians would keep Christ smack dab in the middle of our lives.

And finally, this little poster that I designed and am having printed indicating that everyone doesn't have to be the best, it really takes a lot of "middle" to create the beautiful.

 then, she {snapped}

"You have a unique message to deliver; a unique song to sing, a unique act of love to bestow.  This message, this song, and this act of love have been entrusted exclusively to the one and only you."  ~  John Powell, S.J.

Until next time....

Sunday, April 29, 2012

I Am No Hero

Time to reveal a fact....I am not a hero. Although some have called me that, I want to assure you that I am not.  I think I may have been tagged this because I became caregiver for my husband, who is suffering from Alzheimer's and my Mother who until her death about 1 1/2 years ago was 91 and in failing health.  I was labeled a hero, a saint, and that I would go straight to heaven etc etc.  Believe me, I appreciate the kind thoughts, but I do believe that all of us, given the opportunity would be heroes and you would think the same way as me.  Not a hero, just doing what needs to be done out of love.  I love my husband (you know the part about 'through sickness and in health?') and I loved my Mother.  Those last few years with her were priceless, I wouldn't trade those days in for anything. Granted there were days that if I heard "what's for dinner" one more time, I would be ready to throw in the towel.  But most days were filled with getting to know my Mother all over again.

But just to show you that I am definitely not a hero, I am going to reveal some dark secrets about myself.  Probably too much information, but this will definitely make you change your mind about me being a hero.  I do disgusting things like "pee" in the shower.  I don't know if any of you have done this, don't have to reveal if you have, but when that water starts streaming, the urge just hits.  And the clean-up is really easy while standing in the shower.  Disgusting, I know....hero? I don't think so.  Another secret, I am constantly picking my ears...they itch and I can't help but give in to the urge to pick, usually with a Q-tip, but if one is not around, I have been known to pick up a bobby-pin to relieve that tickling itch. So disgusting, am I now slipping further and further away from being your hero??  And another one, last one, I promise.  I look in the mirror (magnifying, I might add) and look for a pimple, black-head, clogged pore anything that might need some squeezing.  I know, bad, bad thing to do to your face, but again, another disgusting secret. All of these disgusting secrets (no longer!!) are done behind closed doors and will remain behind closed doors eventho I revealed them to God and all right here in print. I can just imagine what my daughter is saying about right now, that is if she is reading this, Oh Mom, how disgusting, yep.

I bet each and everyone of you have some little secrets that you keep all to yourself.  And I am certainly NOT going to ask you to share them, because they would definitely not be secrets any longer.  But my main intent in this "reveal" was to wash away any thoughts that I could possibly be a hero, what hero pees in the shower, picks their ears and squeezes whatever on their face and then has the "gall" to put it all on a blog??

These are the heroes of my Mother and my Husband in earlier times, Easter 2010.

"Treasure each other in the recognition that we do not know how long we will have each other."  ~  Joshua Liebman

Until next time.....

Water, Water Everywhere

I have been participating in the Leap Into Spring photo challenge (always up for a good challenge) and this week's prompt is "water, rain, etc."  I have waited all week for it to rain here, and it did on Friday night, but by the time I got out with my camera all the puddles, drops, and splashes had disappeared.  So I am going to have to revert to some of my older pics....not too old, less than a month, to fill this post with water and things associated with water.

First up...a little story.  One afternoon I was sitting on my brother's deck in Galveston, half snoozing, half looking around for any possible photo ops when I spotted this heron across the canal.  I watched and this is what unfolded....

Wonder if there is anything edible in these waters...Hmmm, is anybody watching?

Maybe if I lean over I can find something...

Oh just a little bit further...oh I hope nobody is watching my butt sticking out but whatever that is, I just have to get it...

Ahh got it but not sure it was worth all that effort.

The next day, it turned cloudy and the ocean became really rough, but rough seas never stopped AJ from tackling the waves....

The remains of little bits from the sea, I love the trail of bubbles.....

Hoping to get a pic of some brightly colored umbrellas lined up on the beach we stopped and wandered around....the pics were not what I wanted, I didn't want all those people cluttering up my shot but they did not listen to me when I asked them to leave and I even said please.

I did see this cutie patootie having fun all by himself....wonder if he has aspirations of becoming a plumber?

Lovers on the beach....reminds me of that song from Grease..."You're the one that I want. ohh ohh ohh"

And finally, several of the evenings we would make it a point to be at the beach for the sunset, we had it timed perfectly for the best shots.  I would come home with probably 100 shots of that evening's sunset, but this one surprised me.  I think it was just a a moment when my focus was on the bushes and there must have been a cloud that surrounded the sun just perfectly that it resulted in this heart shape.  I added the text, but did nothing to the pic itself.

I am linking up to Nancy at

Alicia at
                                                 Leap Into Spring Photo Challenge
And Rebecca at

Hope you all have a blessed Sunday and a marvelous week ahead....

Until next time.....

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Saturday ~

It is abnormally cool, kinda wet, but not enough wet and dreary....just the kind of dreary that makes an afternoon of snuggled up on the couch reading pure pleasure.  Started a new book, Faith by Jennifer Haigh which is our book-club choice for May.  Should bring a lot of discussion due to the subject Irish Catholic priest from Boston is accused of child molestation and it's effects it has on him and his family.  It's fiction, but I am sure very real-life telling.  And, before you know it, it is going to be warm enough to sit and read on the backporch, which is on my list of top 10 things to do any day, every day.

March was so incredibly warm that I really hoped that April would continue, but not so.  April turned out to be almost like March usually is, cool, cloudy, blustery.  Between the confusing weather patterns and all that crazy talk about the Mayan calendar and the "end" of the world I was beginning to freak myself out.  As a result I thought, crazy thoughts, what if all this talk is true??  And then it dawned on me, why worry, if it happens there isn't a darn thing anybody can do.   Prepare yourself spiritually and go forward with your daily living.  And on top of all that, who says the Mayan's are the one's that end this world?  I do believe that power and that decision belongs to someone far greater than the Mayans.  And right now I am wondering how I ever got onto this subject.

Next subject.....this morning my good friend, Marti hosted a wonderful brunch today as a fund raiser for one of her favorite charities, one that she has invested much of her time and heart to, The Purdue University Center for Cancer Research.  There were approximately 20 women that attended, some I knew, some I didn't but it was a delightful morning and a delicious brunch.  Marti outdid herself on the food and her hospitality.  As a thank-you for our donations, not only did we enjoy the over-the-top mouthwatering brunch but we all took home a T-shirt (Marti is modeling).  We were invited to wear our pajamas and I really thought about it, but changed my mind and wore just regular clothes.  Several did wear their comfy pj's, lucky them, their waistline's were all stretch elastic, they could handle more food intake than I could with regular slacks.

On each table, Marti had placed these darling pots of Ranunculas with a THANKS pic sticking out of each pot, which I am sure she did herself, Marti is quite the talented lady.

I stepped outside momentarily because her backyard was beginning to show it's color with these beautiful flowers....the perennial geranium.....

and the Aliums were beginning to burst into bloom.....

After that wonderful layout of food, I came home to sit and read for awhile, but not for head began to bob, and slumber set in.

I am linking up today over at Nancy's A Rural Journal, she is hosting a link-up in honor of a blogging friend that is suffering from cancer.  We were asked to deliver flowers to Leontien by way of Nancy's blog...what a sweet, sweet gesture.  Praying for strength and healing for you, huge virtual hugs.

"Nobody sees a flower really; it is so small.  We haven't the time, and to see takes time - like to have a friend takes time."  ~  Georgia O'Keeffe

Until next time.....

Friday, April 27, 2012

Target Can Be A Dangerous Place

There was a time that I had a "member's card" for Sam's Club, but I found that everytime I went to Sam's I would spend hoards of money.  Now granted some of that money was spent on necessary things, but other times I would come home with frozen goods that eventually would turn into something I no longer recognized, books that would sit on the bookshelf never to be picked up again, boxes of cereal that would be hard as a rock by the time we would get to the 4th box in the pack and various and assorted other things that at the time I thought really I needed.  I am sure that Sam's has it's place among large families, but since I am down to one, Sam's is not where I need to shop.

So what do I do, go to Target instead.  That also can be a dangerous place to shop.  Like Sam's Target has EVERYTHING.  Oh my from soup to nuts, or from TV's to gardening supplies, or from gift wrapping to picture frames, or from cosmetics to books.  I could go on and on, but if you have a Super Target near you, you know exactly what I mean.  After my movie club outing on Monday the Super Target was in the same shopping area, so I stopped to do a little shopping.  You see that word "little", ha....$327.79 later I walked out of Target thinking what the he_ _ did I buy for $327.79?  And just like Sam's I get sucked in to buying  things I probably didn't need.  Remember there is only one of me now, not a huge family. But I do have to tell you about 3 "new" products that came home in that $327.79 shopping bag.

This new box of I have always been a Triscuit fan ever since I can remember.  I did not realize Triscuit has been in production since  If you want to read more about Triscuit just follow this link to Wikepdia.  Learn something new everyday.  But I digress, they have a new flavor...DILL and it is yummy.

Second, this lovely looking box of tea.  I really don't know if this is a new product, but I was attracted to it by 1) it's pretty box and 2) it had the words calming, sleep...words that appeal to me.  I have had a cup each night since I purchased it and it does seem to work (keeping fingers crossed).  

And third, oh my goodness, why did somebody not tell me about this new product??  Chocolate and Cream Cheese together, in a container ready to be spread on anything and everything, even fingers.  Just buy it is all I can say.  And I checked the calories, none.... but ofcourse right now I have misplaced my glasses.  

Share if you have found a new product that gets you excited, word of mouth is the best advertisement.

"There is always something left to love.  And if you ain't learned that, you ain't learned nothin'"  ~  Lorraine Hansberry

Until next time.....

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Thursday Thoughts

I entitled this post Thursday Thoughts, but honestly I don't have any thoughts tonight.  I could make a comment on the trial of John Edwards, the golden boy turned scum-bag that used thousands of dollars in campaign money to hide his mistress and baby from his cancer-stricken dying wife, but I won't.  I could comment on the Vatican nun crackdown that hits the US group for "radical feminist" ideas, but I won't.  Or I could comment on the fact that the state of Illinois now has 2, yes, 2 former govenors in federal prison for corruption but I won't.  Instead I am just going to post some pretty pictures that I took in my backyard today.  These make me feel a whole lot better than the 3 subjects that I am not commenting on.

These are all pics of the Bridal Veil Viburnum bushes that are growing in my yard and my neighbors yard.  Aren't they pretty?

Adorama is having a $5.00 sale on 16x20 poster size prints, so decided to have this made into one.  The poster was $5.00, shipping was $6.95 hmmmm.

Same flower, different poster.

As I walked out my front door this evening there was this sweet red robin perched right on top of this red truck.  I ran in, grabbed my camera, changed to my trusty Tamron 18-270mm lens thinking all the while that the robin would be long gone before I got back.  But nope, there he was, pretty as a picture and posing for me too.

So I think displaying these pics was a better choice than commenting on any of the above subjects, don't you agree?  Sharing with Deb at This or That Thursdays and Nancy at Rural Thursday....

"There are only two things you "have to do" in life.  You "have to" die and you "have to" live until you die.  You make up all the rest."  ~  Marilyn Grey

Until next time......

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


In this week's Beyond Layers class assignment, Kim has challenged us to write about and share or not, a time when bravery topped the list of actions and emotions in our life.  Did I really feel brave at the time I was living through these moments?  I think not, it is only in looking back that bravery seemed to buoy to the top.  Bolstering me to not fall or fail. Instead of writing in depth about each and every time I felt brave a list is forthcoming, perhaps sharing in depth will come later each one a story in itself.
  • Going on a blind date with my future husband
  • Getting married (a leap of faith)
  • Having children (another leap of faith)
  • Moving to a new city, no family, no friends
  • Finding breast lumps (twice)
  • Retiring at age 55 (Is there enough money??) 
  • Being Care-Giver to both Husband & Mother
  • Moving  my husband into a Memory Care Facility (Is there enough money??)  
  • Living Alone
Through it all I have learned to......

And trust in my faith.

And 5 big and brave photography dreams
  • Join a Photography Club
  • Focus more on Portraits
  • Enter a Photography Event 
  • Take a Photography Class at my local college
  • Be published
I know 2 of those are easy peasy, join a photography club and take a photography class, it is just getting off my duff and doing it.  

Sharing with Kim at Beyond Layers


Take chances, make mistakes. That's how you grow. Pain nourishes your courage. You have to fail in order to practice being brave. ~ Mary Tyler Moore

Until next time.....