Spirit of Dragonflies, LLC

Kripalu Mindfulness Outdoor Experience Guide & Life Coach – Get Outside. Go Within.


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Terrific Tuesday!

Wishing you all a Terrific Tuesday. Take time to enjoy the little moments in life that diminish before your eyes. They will not return for a later day.

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Spending time walking on the pier with my daughter and grandson (2.5 years) reminded me of when my daughter at the same age. We would walk together holding hands enjoying the day. At home she would follow me around the house singing “I’m watching you, watching you…” while we prepared meals together.

Those were cherished times – holding hands and cuddling were my favorite times of the day. My grandson didn’t want to cuddle as much on this visit so we shared special moments playing, enjoying nature walks, and watching Curious George. Yesterday before heading back to San Diego he wanted to repair the tire on our McDonald’s toy. I gave him a roll of tape and he worked on repairing the tire. It was adorable. While watching Curious George they would show George’s antics and then children would try to replicate the cartoon by drawing maps of their park and finding their way around, learning about pulls bringing items to the second floor of the porch, and repairing things. Tanner was absorbing everything the entire time he watched the movie.

Thankfully I knew during our visits as we explored nature, laughed and played that these were precious moments. Exploring with children can open your eyes to things you may have long forgotten to notice. Watching them absorb their environment, observe the adults actions and listen to stories is amazing.

For today, enjoy those you are spending time with, get out in nature, check out shadows, the sound of trees rustling in the breeze, water dripping, and all the wonders of life. You don’t have to travel to enjoy your day – there is beauty all around you.

Have a terrific Tuesday:)

Love and Light!


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WPC – Life Imitates Art

“Life imitates art far more than art imitates Life.”

— Oscar Wilde

This week, find inspiration in a piece of art. Then, imitate it. As I went through my photos I realized my children and I have stood or sat with statues quite often over the years, blending in to make them feel a part of our photos. My children are hanging out with the cowboy, just taking a little rest, in an early 80s photo. You can probably tell by the cigarette hanging from his mouth. This cowboy was part of Story Town when the adventure land played a big roll in Lake George during the summer months. This park is now the Great Escape Adventure Park, Story Town plays a very small role, if any today.

Hanging with a cowboy at Story Town, Lake George, NY

         Hanging with a cowboy at Story Town, Lake George, NY

While visiting my daughter in California we visited La Jolla, checked out the seals on the beach and then strolled through town. I had to stop for a photo shoot with a Dr. Seuss character and assist him with his tray.

Hanging with Cat in the Hat in La Jolla, CA

                                            Hanging with Dr. Seuss Character in La Jolla, CA

Last summer while visiting Mystic Seaport, CT I noticed the runner, John Kelly, and his dog. I decided to join them in their run. We didn’t get very far.

Running with John Kelly in Mystic Seaport, CT

                                             Running with John Kelly in Mystic Seaport, CT

Living in the moment and enjoying life! That is one of the reasons we pose with the statues and allow them to be a part of our enjoyment. Why not have some fun, be silly, and laugh. Isn’t that what life is all about – enjoying the adventure. Do you ever stop for a photo shoot with statues or other interesting artistic creations?

If you would like to see more entries for this week’s photo challenge or would like to enter your own, click on the link below:

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/life-imitates-art/

Love and Light!

 


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3 – Day Quote Challenge – Day 1

Trees - Carl Sagan quote

 

Mary has invited me to participate in a 3 – day quote challenge, which I have gladly, though belatedly accepted.  In turn, I invite , Sandy from https://hoardercomesclean.wordpress.com/about/ , Tom from https://aquietpath.wordpress.com/about/, Chris, from https://chrisbreebaart.wordpress.com/albums/.  There is no pressure to accept.

Participant requests: Post an inspirational, uplifting quote for three consecutive days and invite three other bloggers to join you.

Anyone who would like to participate, please share your favorite quotes with us!

Love and Light!

Sandy


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WPC – Now

Now

Sometimes, we get caught up in nostalgia, future visions/fantasy or both, and we don’t embrace the “now.” For this week’s challenge, take a moment to notice your present, and share a photo of it. If you would like to view other photos for this week’s challenge or to join in click on this link:

<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/now/”>Now</a

For anyone who has visited my site in the past, you know that I can’t seem to add just one photo especially after a day of taking photos. Just too many to choose from.

Yesterday we celebrated Christmas at our home. Love the photo of Olivia. She was ripping through presents without stopping. As she began to open another present my son showed her the clock she had just thrown aside to explain that the ballerina legs are the hands of the clock. Her expression let’s us know her thoughts. She had been moving so fast she never noticed. Sometimes we have to bring children back to the now and slow them down for a moment in time.

My granddaughter was trying on her presents as she went. Having fun in the now of the moment. It was wonderful to have a couple of hours without cell phones or interference. My son was holding my 3 month old grandson, Colt. They were caught in the now while watching Taylor opening presents. Love their expressions. Even the baby was interested.

It was a wonderful day spent with family. Our family, probably like your own, has changed traditions as some members of the family died from year to year, divorces, growing children, new babies, new friends, new family members through marriage and relationships. Remaining in the NOW of the moment allows a family to adjust to the many life transitions.

My oldest sister sometimes stays in the past and the photos seems to capture her in some other place in time, the same for my brother-in-law.

My son is always transitioning from a beard to clean-shaven to beard. This year, beard and the new shirt was quite fitting. His girlfriend is a wonderful person who looks on lovingly.

I think the shirt matches my son with the beard

I think the shirt matches my son with the beard

 

My daughter photo bombing my granddaughter and her boyfriend. My granddaughter has a new boyfriend this year. He is a very nice young man. As I was capturing their photo my daughter snuck in to photo bomb. They both love anything 60s and 70s. She is my hippie soul mate. The little peace necklace she wears was mine when I was a teenager. On Christmas morning as she opened presents it brought me back to the past and how much I would have loved her presents at her age. Once snapped back to the present I went to my jewelry box knowing NOW was the moment to present my own necklace to her. She loved it!

My daughter photo bombing my granddaughter and her boyfriend

At the end of the long day, little Colt gave in to his sleep. With all the noise and festivities he was able to shut his eyes and enjoy a peaceful sleep.

Wonder what baby Colt is dreaming about

Wonder what baby Colt is dreaming about

Oh to be a little baby and be able to sleep when and wherever you are. Always in the now without thought of past or future. At what age do we lose this ability to live in the now every day. I see young children with books in hand at restaurants, parties, and any where they can reading now matter what is happening around them. They are able to remain in the now with an intensity that was never mine as a child. Today I am relearning how to live in the now, living mindfully and enjoying life.

Is there a technique you use to live in the now, mindful of the present moment and the preciousness of remaining there whenever possible?

Love and Light!


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WPC – Gatherings

This week’s challenge is gatherings and I have chosen a family gathering. During the holiday season my family gathers together for games and laughter. Every year there is a new game introduced and we return to some favorites. Last year, this is what we looked like.

To participate in this week’s photo challenge click here.

Do you gather with family and friends to play games? If so, which are your favorites? We love Apples to Apples, several card games, Life with the younger children and Memory with the little ones. This is always a special time of year in more ways than one. Some of our family members do not always get home for the holidays so when they do we spend a lot of time together having fun. Wish this could happen several times a year instead of just at Thanksgiving and Christmas. For those who do not celebrate Christmas do you have any special games or activities you share in for your holidays?

Sending Peaceful Love and Light To All!

<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/gathering/”>Gathering</a&gt;


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WPC – Transitions

<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/transition/”>Transition</a&gt;

There are numerous transitions to choose from so I decided to share photos of two. The first is transitions in seasons and hours of the day.

Two of my favorite places in Stillwater, NY are the National Historical Park (Saratoga Battlefield grounds of Revolutionary War) and the Stillwater Block House. The Block House was in the Saratoga Battlefield when I was a child through to my young adult years. Because it was not original they wanted it removed. The Historical Society was given land on a farm to relocate the House however access was difficult. After many years of fund-raisers the Block House found a home along the Hudson River in a newly created park. There are benches and this is now a small historical tourist attraction. If you are ever traveling through the area stop and take a look maybe even a walk in the Saratoga Battlefield.

The second set of photos is a transition from dough to decorated Christmas cookies.

My daughter and I had a wonderful time last year making sugar cookie dough, cutting out the shapes, baking and decorating the cookies. Then of course we enjoyed eating some of the dough and cookies before sharing them with friends and family. Looking forward to this year’s Christmas cookie bake. Another transition we had in our family was the birth of Cassie’s son on Sept. 14th so we will have a new little helper. Ok, he may not really be any help but it will be fun singing Christmas carols to him as we prepare the cookies. Transitions are a constant in families – babies are born, others die, and new people join through marriage or relationships. One never knows from one year to the next what life changes will occur.

We live through many transitions throughout each day of our life. Try to be open and allow because transitions are a part of life just as day turns to night, summer turns to autumn then to winter, spring and back to summer – everything is in transition. Remember to stop and pay attention to your breath once in a while – be present in the moment and live mindfully enjoying the small things – the smell of coffee or tea, fresh air, the taste of a treat, warmth of soup as it fills your belly, sitting in front of a fire on a cold day, placing your feet in the cool water or dirt on a hot summer’s day. What do you find pleasure in when weathering storms? Those are the times when we sometimes forget, yet they are the times when its beneficial to be aware.

Love and Light!


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In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Grid.”

Today my daughter, grandson, and I took a trip to the Adirondack Balloon Festival in Queensbury, NY. Although the wind kept the hot air balloons from flying this evening, the owners did try to inflate them for the crowd.

Knowing that this week’s challenge was ‘Grid’ I was mindful of finding a photo for the challenge. It didn’t take long. When the balloons were being inflated I immediately noticed the grids. So here are my choices for this week’s challenge.

I became so involved in taking photos that I lost my daughter and grandson for a while. Eventually we met up at the pizza vendor and actually found a little girl around three years of age who was lost. After calling out “Did anyone lose a child?” while walking through the crowd, a man turned to his wife and asked if she had their daughter. Both looked around and realized their little girl was missing. Her name was the same as the child we had found so they were reunited. It was scary because they had never even noticed she was missing. They had two other children standing near them and one in a carriage. We kept a very close eye on my grandson so there were no repeats.

Fun was had by all even though there were no actual flights. It was perfect weather for a day outside enjoying the sights and family time.

Love and Light!
Sandy


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In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Today Was a Good Day.”

When I read this week’s challenge I thought – this will be difficult because everyday is a good day. Then tonight while visiting at my son’s house I decided today was a good day.

This morning I woke and went to the gym to meet with a trainer and then attended an exercise class. When I returned home I was feeling high vibration and danced around the house thinking I LOVE life. After showering and eating breakfast I headed out to my son’s house. On the way I stopped at a favorite fresh fruit stand to pick up some peaches and a Fruits of the Forest pie for my daughter who is four weeks from delivery of her first baby.

My daughter, her boyfriend, my son and I had a picnic and then played some crochet. As you can see from the one photo my son found his ball in the bushes and had a difficult play. While they were resting I captured some photos. After the third game of croquet we decided to take a walk.

Remember I said my daughter is pregnant, well she is four weeks away from delivery and not able to walk too far so my son suggested riding in the wagon. We thought he was kidding around but a little while later we heard noise coming from the garage. Sure enough he had a wagon and was placing a blanket in the bottom to make it comfy. As you can see from the photos it is a beautiful area and my son takes very good care of his ‘baby’ sister. He is also her God Father and I am very happy that they can have such fun together.

As I followed them down the driveway I thought – this is a ‘good day.’ But then, everyday I get to spend time with my grown children is a good day.

Cassie was a bit nervous when Joe decided to run down a hill with her in the wagon swaying back and forth. He was trying to get momentum to make it up the next hill, she holding on tight worrying about tipping over. There were no spills. She got out to walk for a bit. So Joe decided to take a ride down the next hill on his own. As you can see from the photo above he did make it safely down the hill. We were a bit nervous when he was heading toward the woods but he was able to steer clear. I think he will always be a little adventurous and maintain that child within that comes out every now and then to play. Well, really it comes out whenever he is with us.

Today was just one of those extra special good days.

Love and Light!


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Kripalu Retreat – The Artist Way

Lately I have been very busy just loving life. Living mindfully and remaining open to what life brings resulted in an opportunity to meet Julia Cameron, author of The Artist Way: Creativity as a Spiritual Practice. On the first weekend in May, I spent the weekend at Kripalu Center for Yoga and Wellness located in Stockbridge, MA. It was a wonderfully relaxing experience and I met many interesting people all on their own journey. I chose to stay in a shared room with four bunks. Arriving a bit late resulted in my sleeping on a top bunk. It was not a bother at all because the mattresses were the most comfortable that I have ever slept on outside of my own home. Lights were out at 10 pm. I am generally up until midnight so I thought this would be a problem. It wasn’t. I gladly went to bed at 9 pm and rose at 6 am to take a walk. The women sharing the room were from different states, some traveling from as far away as California. Two of the young women had been in the Peace Corp but at different times meeting for the first time on that weekend. Two other women had been visiting Kripalu together for a quiet retreat together for several years. It was a very interesting mix and each of us were visiting for different workshops or reasons.

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Lake near Kripalu – Loved the reflections

Every moment of the weekend was special. I walked barefoot through the labyrinth, down the path to the lake as well. A very interesting moment occurred while hiking in the woods I found myself lost with no idea how to find my way back. At first a bit of panic set in. Then I stood taller and took a deep breath. I noticed the trees, the complicated root system on the fallen tree above, watched birds chasing one another through the woods singing along the way and that is when it occurred to me that we are never really lost. Everything is where it has always been so how can I be lost. A thought flashed through my mind that no one would know I was missing, not even family. This stopped me for a moment but I was in the woods, not just woods, but old growth forest. The ground was still covered in leaves from the fall and the smell of earth welcomed me.

I knew eventually I would find a road, the lake or catch sight of the building so I carried on. One time I came out to a beautiful green field with no sight of the road or building. I walked across the field and noticed a piece of the lake through the trees. Walking along in the leaves I noticed a path which brought me to the lake. Not the location where I had been earlier in the morning but it was the same lake so I continued along the path. Ahead I noticed a large white rock near a tree so I bent down and placed my hands on it. The rock was very cold. The water behind me started to move and slurping sounds of the water lapping along the shore startled me. There were no motor boats or any people so the movement of the water seemed unusual. I stood and begin walking along the path once again. The water quieted. It was a little eery.

The path disappeared once again so I continued to follow the water’s edge. To my right I noticed a path trailing up the embankment so I went to meet up with it. Eventually I found my way to the original path and after an hour and a half made my way back to Kripalu. The original loop that I had planned to walk should have taken a half hour. At this point I was late for my class with Julia Cameron.

For those of you unfamiliar with her work, I have included a photo of her book and the agenda. We wrote and shared. A room full of strangers were not strangers for long. We had break out groups continuously throughout the day. Julia would tell us to meet with strangers, strangers you have not met with before. I am sure we all met at least twenty or so other people throughout the weekend.

I had read The Artist Way years ago when my youngest daughter was still living home. Writing three pages every morning when I woke became a part of my morning ritual. I looked forward to it. As you can see from the photos below, writing in journals is part of who I am. Some are from the early 1990s. Not all are from the morning pages but many are.

What are morning pages you ask? Well, Julia calls it Mind Dumping. Keep a journal and pen next to your bed. When you wake grab the journal and pen and start writing any thoughts that come into your mind. I have to pick up milk today, the sun is shining, I’m tired, my shoulder hurts, the birds are singing, change the oil in the car  . . . anything that come to mind until the three pages are complete. Then shut the page and go on about your day. Don’t reread what you wrote until a month or several months. What I love about this is a theme will shine through, at least it has for me. There are some things that come up daily and eventually you start to bring up creative thoughts they may have been hidden deep down within. It is a process to dig for creativity. If you are interested in learning more I suggest you pick up her book.

 

Living mindfully allowed me to enjoy every moment of the experience. While in the book shop I purchased a Ganesh made of volcanic ash. This is something I have been wanting for a long time so it is now displayed on my alter with the praying Buddha. After the class was over on Sunday, I wasn’t ready to leave. It was a beautiful day and my children are grown so there was no rush. Remembering what it was like most of my adult life, living in the mad rush of the world, I decided to slow down, breathe and live in the moment as I had all weekend. I pulled out my book and sat in the chair to enjoy the sun.

I am looking forward to visiting Kripalu again next year. Maybe the next time I will attend a weekend yoga retreat.

Love and Light,
Sandy


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Plane in flight

Plane in flight

After reviewing some photos I decided to add a variety. The photo above was taken while in motion above the earth traveling to California. It was an amazing view.

The photos below are from a visit with my sister and her granddaughters. They are always in motion and we had a fun time together. The swing in front of my house is getting a lot of use from the little and ‘big’ kids. The girls are constantly running, doing cartwheels, head stands, and eating. I love them!!

The next couple of photos are of my grandchildren. My grandson spent Christmas at my home. I pulled out the old McDonald’s for him to enjoy. As you can see he had fun serving up hamburgs, Big Macs, and Happy Meals. He was in constant motion until he fell asleep. My granddaughter was caught in motion as she drew her self portrait. Like my son, she is always in motion drawing and painting. As a baby she too, enjoyed playing McDonald’s. We do not even eat at McDonalds so it is quite odd that we have this toy at all. It has traveled with my family from Vermont to upstate New York, Maryland, California, and back to upstate New York. As you can see it’s still in pretty good shape.

Baby serving up a McDonald's hamburg

Baby serving up a McDonald’s hamburg

My granddaughter in her father's studio

My granddaughter in her father’s studio

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The photo below is of my son and daughter while we were apple picking in the fall. We are in  constant motion while in the apple orchard. We filled three bags and had a fun time in the process. They can keep me laughing the entire time making this an enjoyable experience. Of course we returned home to make some apple crisp so even when home we were in motion coring, peeling, cutting and mixing.

My son and daughter apple picking last fall

My son and daughter apple picking last fall

As you can see we are a family in constant motion. I had to add one more photo of my daughter in motion decorating Christmas cookies. We spent the day mixing, rolling, cutting, baking and decorating. Of course we spent some time eating and enjoying the fruits of our labor.

My daughter decorating Christmas cookies. There was constant motion between rolling dough, cutting out, baking and decorating.

My daughter decorating Christmas cookies. There was constant motion between rolling dough, cutting out, baking and decorating.

Hope you enjoyed the visit with my family in motion.

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Motion.”