Spirit of Dragonflies

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


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Place in the World – WPC Challenge

For this week’s photo challenge, explore what it means to find your place in the world. Where’s your safe space? Where do you go when you need to feel inspired or cheered up? Do you prefer to feel cozy and comforted in a smaller town or do you thrive on the buzz of a big city? If landscapes aren’t your thing, you can even explore portraits by playing with scale or fashion.

Nature is not a place to visit, it is home. ~ Gary Snyder ~

My place in the world is anywhere outside in nature. If I could find a way to live outside all year I would. Maybe one of those round glass houses where you can see nature all around you even during short winter days.

In the meantime I live as close as possible for now – trees standing tall outside the windows, birds play in the bird bath, listen to leaves rustling in the wind as the sheer curtins dance in the windows, wake to the birds’ morning songs and listen to the owl’s story in the evening hours. Whenever possible, I am outside and barefoot weather permitting.

Forget not that the earth delights to feel your barefeet and the winds long to play with your hair. ~ Kahlil  Gibran ~

It is important that my grandchildren learn to love nature as my children have before them. All three are tree huggers, sun gazers, prefer walking in barefeet, and the newest additions will be as well.

Nature – Our Home

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“What we are doing to the forests of the world is but a mirror reflection of what we are doing to ourselves and to one another.” ~ Mahatma Ghandhi ~

Do you enjoy spending time outside in nature? If so, where is your favorite place?

Let’s all do something to preserve and protect Mother Earth. We will only ever have one and as Mother Day approaches let’s take some time to appreciate the Mother that gives life to all.

Love and Light!

If you would like to view other photos for this week’s challenge or would like to submit your own, click on the link below:

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/place/


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WPC – Earth (2)

“Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.” ~ Albert Einstein~

Happy Earth Day!

“The environment is where we all meet; where all have a mutual interest; it is the one thing all of us share.”  ~ Lady Bird Johnson ~

March for Science in New York City.

“A true conservationist is a man who knows that the world is not given by his fathers, but borrowed from his children.”  ~ John James Audubon ~

If you would like to view other photos from this week’s challenge or would ike to enter your own, click on the link below:
https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/earth-2017/

Love and Light!


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Life Through the Eyes of a Child

What are you teaching your children about life and our connection to nature? Better yet, what are your children teaching you?

We can bring our children to the mall, fill their bedrooms and our houses with items we don’t need, spend our days in amusement parks, zoos, aquariums, or sit in front of the television or computer disconnected from life-giving nature. Or, we can teach our children early that we are alive due to our connection with something larger than ourselves – nature, our place in the Universe, something higher than ourselves.

Imagine what our worldview would be if we taught our children that they are connected to everyone on this planet and we are all sharing the same air, water, soil, energy . . .  YES, we are all sharing this for the time we are blessed with life.

Feeling very grateful that my children, grandchildren, family and friends share in a love of nature and the reality that without clean air to breath, clean water to drink, healthy soil to grow food we would not survive. What can you do to help yourself and the next generation? Listen to the little ones. They are teaching us about life, being mindful, and finding beauty in our world.

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Tell me about nature

My little grandsons, Tanner and Colt, love nature – running around barefooted, hugging and talking to trees, the sky, clouds, birds, rolling around in grass, dirt, sunsets, and walking in the woods. Last year, when visiting my daughter and her family in San Diego, Tanner said, “Look at the beautiful sunset.” His Mom and Dad hadn’t noticed that every night at dinner there was a beautiful sunset view from their dining table. Out of the mouth of babes . . . While I was visiting, Tanner and I would go outside to enjoy the sunset until the thin orange/red line disappeared into the dark of night. We took walks in the neighborhood and spoke to the homeless lady sitting in the shade of a tree, to the workmen repairing the road, to the clerk serving us our ice cream. We also stopped to watch the birds in flight, the squirrels playing under the trees, the cat crossing the road. Everything is interesting when we slow down to see through the eyes of the child.

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Baby connecting with tree spirit

The boys follow in the path of my granddaughter, born 18 years prior to Tanner. They are their Mimi’s special nature babies. Taylor, at 21, is very connected with nature and exploring her world. Luckily she still finds everything to be interesting and spends her free time in nature – exploring New Mexico for now.

When we teach our children about nature they grow up to be adults who understand their connection with the precious Earth we live in communion with. It’s up to us as the adults to bring them to places where they can touch the earth, and maybe hug some trees, so they can find balance when facing challenges during their teen years. Prepare them to enjoy the inspiration of singing birds on a day when they might be facing loss; to connect with trees and the peaceful energy of a forest to guide them through sadness/ loneliness, so they can ground themselves and find inner peace. These are the treasures we can provide to our children rather than malls, amusement parks, computers, television shows, and other ways to mask reality. With the use of illegal drugs on the rise wouldn’t it be better to teach our children how to handle stress, sadness, loneliness and loss by connecting to nature during their early years rather than having them struggle through their inner turmoil without knowing. If you are one who is controlled by drugs, alcohol, tobacco or other vices, wouldn’t it be more productive to allow the small children to teach you how to reconnect, center, and ground yourself? By paying attention to the cues from the child you learn to remain open to the gifts of nature. You will also learn to reconnect with the joys of life that you may have forgotten along your path.

When Tanner was one, he was looking up at the white clouds and pale blue sky. I pointed upward and said “clouds” then “sky.”  It didn’t take long before he was pointing up and saying “sky.” At first I thought he was just repeating words. Later he pointed up and said, “sky” on his own and continued from that day forward. What was interesting is that he didn’t say “clouds” unless there were actually clouds in the sky. He would sit and look up at the sky as if in meditation. Maybe he was. I was reminded of that day this weekend when 18 month Colt and I were outside, he pointed upward and said, “Sky.” First they learn the words, then the meanings, then the connections – most importantly – they see the beauty.

I’m amazed that both boys have a love for trees – a love that started very early on as you can see in the photos above. One of Colt’s first words was “tree.” At first he whispered “treeeee.” When outside he will toddle from one tree to another and hug them or touch them and look up at the canopy. He and I have been enjoying the Magnolia tree in his backyard for quite some time as you will see in one of the photos below.

Whether summer, fall, winter or spring you will find us outside enjoying nature. Yes, we still visit the mall on occasion, a zoo, sit in front of the computer or television, and partake in other indoor activities however our great love is being outside and sharing in the natural beauty of our world.

If we could all pay a little more attention to life and realize how much we depend on nature for our survival we would be able to balance our ‘needs’ with our ‘wants’ in a more beneficial way. As a result we will leave this world a better place for future generations. Let’s do our part to balance our lives – see as if viewing the world through the eyes of a child and witness the beauty in your daily life.

Love and Light!


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WPC – Edge 2

“A lake is the landscape’s most beautiful and expressive feature. It is earth’s eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature.” ~Henry David Thoreau ~

Take a seat at the edge of the water, release anything weighing on your mind, breathe in the fresh air and enjoy Mirror Lake. Some run by quickly, others drive by, and some go into their houses never to notice the beauty. On this bench one only has to sit and hear the call of the loons, look to the right and left to absorb the beauty of the mountains. When its time to get up you will feel like a new person.

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Mirror Lake in Lake Placid, NY

“A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”
~ Albert Einstein ~

If you wold like to see other posts for this week’s challenge or would like to submit your own please click on the link below:

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/edge

Love and Light!

(I submitted this photo for WPC – Mirror however I thought it was a perfect fit for this week’s edge as well)


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WPC – Mirror

“Life is a mirror and will reflect back to the thinker what he thinks into it.” ~ Ernest Holmes ~

This week’s topic – Mirror – is one of my favorites to capture with my camera. Whenever I see a mirror image it makes me stop to admire this phenomenon. It is a miracle that occurs right before our eyes.

My first image is of my grandson. While visiting him a couple of week’s ago I noticed his reflection in the counter top. If I had turned the camera upside down and only captured the county photo it would have been the same except the background would look as if he were in a dark room. Thankfully he was so involved playing with his new car that I had purchased, he didn’t even pay attention to Mimi.

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Lakes are another love of mine to capture when there is a mirror image. Fortunately I was visiting Lake Placid when the water on Mirror Lake was exactly that, mirror like. It was a perfect day for taking photos and reflecting.

Glass windows are another way to capture a mirror image. In the photo below my son and grandson were looking at toys in the window. My favorite part of the photo was their hands. Tanner’s hand on the window and the reflection look like two children touching hands. As my son’s face is a little distorted due to the toy on the shelve behind the window it made the photo feel like another person was pointing back at him. Notice Tanner’s other hand with is right index finger, pointing down mimicking his uncle Joe. Wonder if that was unconscious on his part.

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Another fun way to capture mirror images is on the wet sand while walking on the beach. My grandson, daughter, her husband, sister-in-law and mother-in-law were walking in front of me jumping and being silly with Tanner. They were having such fun and their mirror images were interesting captures. Notice in the one to the right, Tanner is actually in the air. If you look close you can see his little feet in the mirror image.


Still rivers are also perfect for taking mirror images. This is the railroad bridge located along the Hudson River between Mechanicville and Stillwater New York. It is a popular spot for photographers who come from miles away to capture this bridge. On this day we were riding by and I had my daughter stop the car so I could capture this beautiful shot. One of my favorites.

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The dock on the Hudson River in Stillwater is another popular spot for photographers, especially in Autumn.

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We can’t have mirror images without some wildlife included. This is a photo from a little stream in Congress Park in Saratoga New York. The ducks were enjoying some family time bathing in the water.

Adirondack Lake in Indian Lake New York has become one of my favorite places to visit and kayak. The lake is like a mirror, the loons sing to one another, and it is very peaceful.

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Autumn is a perfect time to capture the beautiful color of nature. When mirrored on a lake it can take your breath away. Autumn is my favorite time of year. If it would only stay with us for several months instead of a such a short period of time. Every weekend and during the week while traveling for work I love to stop and take in the scenery, smell the freshly fallen leaves while enjoying a cup of pumpkin flavored coffee and an apple cider donut.

And, we can’t forget the beauty of winter snow and decorative lights. I love to capture photos in the winter just before sunset, that little lull between sun and darkness which is short-lived and earlier than we would like during those cold nights.

“We constantly wait in anticipation for a miracle to happen in our life, unaware that the miracle is actually life itself.” ~ Daniel Chadiac

Everything before you is a miracle – YOU are a miracle. Just think about birth – no one can yet explain why we are alive, where our thoughts come from, how one is conceived or how our bodies actually work – it is a guessing game with new ideas and discoveries occurring daily.

I hope you enjoyed viewing my entries for this week. If you would like to view more photos for this week’s challenge or would like to enter your own photos please click on the link below:

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/mirror

Love and Light!

 


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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 – Morning

This morning I had the pleasure of waking at my son’s home to a light rain. I grabbed my camera and headed out the bedroom door into the woods and captured the beauty of nature.

“When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive – to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.” ~ Marcus Aurelius ~

“I have always been delighted at the prospect of a new day, a fresh try, one more start, with perhaps a bit of magic waiting somewhere behind the morning.” ~  J. B. Priestley ~

 

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Thursday morning I also woke in the morning at my son’s home and after witnessing the morning light shining through the trees grabbed my camera and explored the paths behind his home. It is like awaking into a dream world here. Feeling blessed.

“The light which puts out our eyes is darkness to us. Only that day dawns to which we are awake. There is more day to dawn. The sun is but a morning star.” ~ Henry David Thoreau ~

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“I learned this, at least, by my experiment: that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.” ~ Henry David Thoreau, Walden ~
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“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms.” ~ Henry David Thoreau, Walden ~

Wishing you the joy of adventure and enjoyment of life’s simple pleasures. Open you eyes to the beauty around you.

If you would like to view additional entries for this week’s challenge or would like to submit your own click on the link below:
https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/morning-2016

Love and Light!