it’s Tuesday! what’s inspiring you today?

he's a pterodactyl

he’s a pterodactyl

I got out of my car and freaked out a little bit because I had the feeling that my neighbor’s gigantic pine trees were cracking and falling down. Let me tell you how creepy that was — the trees are very tall, and falling branches around here kill people.

I looked up, trying to scan the tree tops for the offending branch getting ready to annihilate me, when I caught sight of the culprit.

This is the biggest, baddest woodpecker I have ever seen. And he was going to town on the branch. Going to town.

I admire his tenacity. Peck peck peck. Going to town.

I’m inspired to get back to my keyboard and do the same. Peck peck peck.

Weekly Photo Challenge: filed under entertaining angels

angel

This lovely lady represents so much that’s good about humanity: unconditional love, joy, compassion.

I ran into to her at the post office. Well. Let me rephrase that; she annoyed her way into my heart while I was standing impatiently in line at the post office.

She kept engaging the postal clerk in a prolonged conversation, asking after everybody in the clerk’s family, her co-workers, and some other mundane and totally-uninteresting-to-me details. In short, she was holding me up. I didn’t even have anywhere to be at the time, but I can say that my day had been fairly ruined with some bad news, and that wasn’t helping my mood.

By the time my turn came up and I was finished and on the way out, she was still moving at her elderly pace to get to the door. I gave in to the moment. I just wasn’t going to get past her so I thought I might as well be nice.

That was the opening she was looking for — perhaps a change in my demeanor had been her motive all along.

She engaged me in conversation, and the more I spoke with her, the more my mood lifted, and the more she became human to me. I had characterized her as the worst kind of stereotype of the elderly. She was anything but.

And I was blessed.

a word about prayer

Do it.

Ok, that’s two words. Do it anyway.

It turns out that the more you pray, the more you pray. And then you get better at it.

Pray for yourself. For what you need. For what you desire. For what grieves you.

Pray for others.

That right there is the ticket. When you pray for others, something happens to you, too. That offering of love comes back to you. It’s a gift of grace.

It’s also an action, and you have to make the choice, the commitment, to pray. Choose well.

Pray.

 

two old birds

Maria Johnson:

It’s cheating, I know, but I was taken with this image when I first took the picture, and regret not having a decent camera at the time to have done better. Still, the image is there, but perhaps more importantly, the image is in my mind — which is why I remembered it when I saw this Week’s Photo Challenge: Dialogue.

Originally posted on another cup of coffee:

photo-2

I took this picture on my phone early in the morning. I’m not a fan of the grainy filter, but there you have it. It’s the two birds that captured my imagination, anyway. They made me laugh, like they were having a conversation.

It’s hard for me not to personify them and imagine lovers sharing a secret. Or two friends confiding in each other.

I thought about these birds long after I took the picture because I couldn’t get out of my mind how human they seemed to me. They’re out in the middle of this lake, standing on a broken tree branch or something, surrounded by water. They have only each other. I imagine how a moment of intimacy like this can transpire between two people who love each other.

I know; they’re only birds. And we’re only human.

It reminded me of the people in my life that…

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a little happy hour — join me?

wineI just finished checking off one more odious project that is in the way of my being able to sit down and play with my toys.

It’s like those Saturday mornings of rushed chores around the house because I had a date that night. Each completed task brings me closer to my goal.

Unfortunately, in my adult life, every time I cross off something from my to-do list, I need to pencil in two more tasks. It never ends.

Consequently, I’ve decided to settle into the evening with a very nice Rioja. And Bugles.

Don’t knock it ’til you try it. In the absence of a nice goat cheese, the Bugles will have to do.

Who will join me?

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Frayed

frayedFrayed.

Could be my nerves. Could be my mind. Could be the bottom of my jeans.

Could be any number of things in my busy life. There’s a lot of negative connotation assigned to the idea of having something frayed. There’s a love seat I have, a leftover from the old living room set that sits in our home office now, used primarily by our dog, Otis. 

I’d be embarrassed to have friends come over and sit there. It’s frayed…mostly abused by 15 years of use by a growing family, and recently repurposed by the dog.

He seems to like it, and if I don’t mind getting dog hair all over me, it’s still a pretty comfortable place to sit. There’s something about feeling comfortable and settled that draws me there to talk with my husband when he’s working at his desk. It’s no surprise the dog likes it. But why?

I think there’s a lot of comfort in old things — not just old things you can pick up in a thrift store, but the old things around the house that weren’t old when you got them — they’ve just aged right alongside you.

Maybe I’m a little frayed, too. My edges are a little rounder, my dark hair has faded into gray, my eyes aren’t as bright as they once were, and now they’re frayed with crow’s feet around the edges.

I’m ok with that. The softer more comfortable me has survived quite a bit, and at least a few people still like to have me around :-)