Posted in Inspiration

Finding your voice

Find your own voice and let it be one of a kind. You cannot expect anything original from an echo.

Xo 🦋💙

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Posted in Poetry

Withstanding the storm

Like a rock facing the storm, he remains strong and steady.

Pounded by waves that never seize to come and go.

Sometimes calm, sometimes forceful, he stands his ground without crumbling.

Fighting the battles that come his way, without wavering from the course.

A beacon of strengths, hope and endurance he remains in his place and withstands the force.

Posted in Europe

Leaving Ramsau

We finally said our goodbye’s to the quaint little village of Ramsau. One last look and we were on our way. The idea was to leave enough time for the unexpected such as “Stau” which are traffic jams on the autobahn. I didn’t want to get back too late, and Mom was in the back of my mind, hoping to sneak a visit at the hospital. The short little getaway had come and gone, and I would lie if I said that it wasn’t to a degree overshadowed with worries about Mom. I wasn’t sure what news to expect and it was hard not to worry.

We made our way back and decided to drive a part of the German Alpine Road. It’s a scenic stretch and one of the most popular tourist routes. It is said to possibly be the most beautiful region on earth and it’s a 280 mile long trek along the German Austrian border. It was a feast for the eyes indeed as the route took us through mountains, villages and hillsides covered in autumnal hues. More than once, I found myself longing to get lost, and it was difficult not wanting to stop everywhere. I wanted to get out and explore. Before we knew it, a good amount of time had past without making any heatwaves to get closer to home. It would be late to get back, even if everything went smooth and the decision was made to head off to the autobahn. Just before entering the autobahn we took a quick pit stop at Burger King. That’s all there was time for and I joked about coming all this way to Germany to have American fast food. I might eat it on a rare occasion and it was surprising that the food seemed to taste much better than in the states. The presentation was more appealing as well and you know that your burger never looks so perfect and scrumptious as it does in the commercials. This one, came pretty darn close and wasn’t all flattened out. It was literally tempting you to bite into it and it was as fresh as it could be. The drive was without any hiccups and the Stau was on the other side of the road. It was a holiday weekend and everybody was heading to the mountains, except us who came back from those beautiful regions.

It was around 8PM that we made it back and drove straight through to the hospital. There was a still a little time left before visiting hours would expire and my only concern was that everybody might be asleep and the room was falling dark. Pulling up in front of the hospital, I spotted light in Mom’s room and was relieved. I would see her tonight, even if it was for a short time. The days were counting down and in less than a week I would be on my way back to the states. I had officially entered the countdown, carefully planning each day to make the most of everything and to fit visits and other obligations and chores into a schedule. Everything I tried so hard to avoid, not wanting to be on a schedule, had no other choice but to be exactly that. There was no way to get around some sort of planning and everyday was booked. Tomorrow, would include a special treat of watching a German soccer game live. I was looking forward to it as if it was a once in a lifetime occurrence. Living this far away from Germany, it might as well easily been one.

Posted in Fun

Rain, rain and more rain

It rained nearly twenty five hours since yesterday and some areas reported over twelve inches of rain while the higher elevations endured snow. The winds were gusty and strong enough, creating big enough waves on Lake Tahoe to make surfing a possibility. Not my cup tea and rough waters like that are scary to me. I know it stems back to my childhood and almost drowning as I was little.

The skies remained dark and dreary today and the rainbows stays absent. Driving to work I was thankful for my new tires as I noticed much water on the roadways and people were driving way too fast, as usual. But nothing disturbed me and I kept driving with a big smile on my face. The reason was simple and the time had finally come to wear my rain boots. It was last year when out of the blue I wanted nothing more than rain boots. Don’t ask me where that came from, I don’t know myself, but I had the image of me wearing them burned into my mind before I even bought them. Arriving at work the water was rushing along the sidewalk and the image reappeared. I knew that it would be the perfect time to make the vision come to life and the moment had finally arrived. I had waited a long time and found myself a good puddle along the stream. What happened next, mmmh, well the evidence is in the picture. 😉

Xoxo 💙🦋

Posted in My story, Photography

Lightening my load

The storms have returned to the Sierra this evening, with mountain snow over the passes and rain in The Valley. Dark ominous clouds threatened the sky for the bigger part of the day, and it sprinkled a few times. The temperature were comfortable throughout the day and hovered in the mid sixties. The sun felt nice on my skin and I saw a few rainbows today. I imagined the pot of gold with a smile and allowed it to carry me to my fairytale.

As nighttime fell, the winds picked up and have combined with heavy rain and falling temperatures. I love to be inside, all cozy and protected on a stormy night, while the rain sounds wonderful against my window. The weatherman warned about potential power outages, but so far so good and despite a few flickers nothing has happened. I’m ok either way and what’s meant to be will happen.

The last two days have been associated with a few chores, but I feel relieved and have lightened my load in more than one sense. With the changing weather on the way, the procrastination has finally ended and I lightened my load by buying new tires for “The Pony” after work yesterday. But not until the fear of actually blowing a tire on the freeway was a pretty good possibility. At least for one tire and it’s the side I so unfortunately brushed against the yellow concrete pole last year. It must have kicked the alignment out of whack and that tire was pretty bald in the middle. I never seen it until recently. After almost $700 later, it was a nice chunk of change to spend, but I can rest more assured that I’m definitely safer now. “The Pony” is not the best winter car, but I’m used to it and now have the best traction possible. Today, it went to visit another shop were it spent from 9AM-6PM for an alignment. It could have easily been more pocket change, but luckily I bought a lifetime alignment years ago and I was all set. Hallelujah. I’m relieved it’s all done now, although today revealed further repairs needed of wear and tear such as the rack and pinion wearing out. Another $300 should take care of that, but the bigger pain in the ass (pardon my French) is trying to take care of these things in between work. Work is hectic right now and I’m not in the mood for extra errands. Plus it takes hours and hours to either sit and wait which would be a terrible waste of a day off haha. We will see and hopefully I get a chance to tackle it soon.

In the meantime I got to visit downtown Reno today and it’s been awhile. I drive by it every day, but my route always takes me past it and my days off are usually spent away from society with Mother Nature. If you have followed my blog long enough you know that this is how I recharge to face the hectic and the noise anew. Today was neat though and I was on a mission to see a few sculptures I have been meaning to see. Reno has several now and the town is turning more and more into artsy little sections. I loved all the wall murals not previously seen and I already want to go back to photograph them. Today, I caught a little bug of street photography and thought of my friend Marcus and his awesome work. You should really check it out and be amazed. Today, brought a welcome change from my usual pictures, I enjoyed it and I will be back. Most sculptures have been donated and are actual Burning Man sculptures. It’s pretty neat to see them and imagine the stories that they have seen on the playa. To touch them and feel the energy or rein vision a picture you might have seen from the actual festival. Maybe you can the hear the music and the beat, the dance and the celebration of life. Maybe you feel a tiny part of it, being in such close proximity with these amazing pieces of art.

Tonight life is good and I am content. I got to see some pretty neat things today and Mother Nature added the drama to my pictures in a different form. I’ve spent a lot of money over the last two days, but on the other hand there really is no price tag big enough for one’s safety. Life is a constant give and take. You win something and you lose something. The trick is learning to balance it and being ok with it. Tonight I’m more than ok with it.

Posted in Photography

Photo-Challenge

This one looks like a good one for joining a fun little black & white, plus color challenge, my friend Linda created. Take any photo and showcase it in it’s original color version, as well as in an altered black & white state.

I love black & white and believe it often adds a touch drama and intensity to the photograph. For my personal taste I find black & white to work best in portrait photography, street photography, with architecture or in dramatic weather. Puffy white’s, or storm clouds add a little extra to the scenery and a sky can look more ominous in a black & white shot.

In the end it all boils down to personal taste and there is no right or wrong, but a sense of exploration and experimentation to find your own style. Eventually you will develop a vision for the composition and style you are after. Most important, have fun with it and capture what YOU want to see through the viewfinder.

What do you think? Color or black & white and why?

Posted in Inspiration

Where to now?

Maybe there are things you would like to change. Things in your past, things you did wrong, perhaps the things that you view as mistakes. You can dwell on it and beat yourself up, you might be especially tough on yourself, all while you would easily give everybody else a break. Somehow you can do the same for you. I have seen it a few times now and I have witnessed that we often place unrealistic expectations on ourselves. Ideals that nobody can live up to and yet we don’t lower the stakes when it comes to be ourselves. I believe that it is then and especially during those times, that we need to accept the lessons for what they were and practice forgiveness. Just like everybody else, we too are deserving of forgiveness, our own and those of others, because in the end……You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.

C. S. Lewis

Posted in Art, music

Painting Music

Hey, my life is pretty busy these days, but I’m carving a little time to engage into the relaxing activity of painting and with any luck I will manage to start reading a great new novel “Watching Glass shatter” from Jay before drifting off to sleep. You need to check it out if you haven’t yet and read my prior review. What are you waiting on…

In the meantime I’m spending a little time on the “Orange Crush” painting, and no that will not really be it’s official and final title. It’s been a long time that I painted and it started with a painting that I have hanging in my office at work. I took it to work to share with a few people and I keep forgetting to take it home. By now, several people have seen it and commented on it, a few even wanted to buy it. Really? I’d probably tell it’s not good enough, but without a doubt am I flattered, honored and surprised all at the same time. I know that in the end we artists are always our worst critic, but REALLY? The compliments brought a burst of new inspiration and definitely some motivation. I even ran across a website today where I could potentially reproduce this so said work of random art. Who knows, maybe it’s another avenue worth exploring some day and maybe I should listen to the push’s that so many have tried to give me to pursue showcasing my art.

In the meantime I’m stealing a few moments to paint a part of my life onto canvas while relaxing to some tunes.