A to Z Challenge – Quotes

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Q is for Quotes

I had to think about this one for a while.  I could have gone with qi that nice little two letter word I love to play in Scrabble or Words With Friends.  I thought about one of my top 5 music artist Queen.  But I am going with Quotes and share of few that I like.

“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched – they must be felt with the heart.” – Helen Keller

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams” – Eleanor Roosevelt

“Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.” – Martin Luther King Jr

“It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” – Confucius

“Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” – George Santayana

I could like a whole lot more, I am often going to Brainyquote to find new ones.  And I do get a daily quote in my email.  There has been a lot said in the past we should pay attention to.  I will close with one of my favorites…

“No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change the world.” – Robin Williams

 

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A to Z Challenge – Photography

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P is for photography

I have always loved to take pictures… even back in my youth with a 110 camera.  I saved money I made on a paper route and babysitting to buy myself a SLR camera.  And when I was at my worst depression, talking pictures while walking in nature was a sort of therapy for me.  Just call me a shutterbug.

Digimax A50 / KENOX Q2

For a while I did a weekly Monochrome Monday picture as I really enjoy the dramatic effect of black and white photography.  I take surprisingly few portrait pictures, but the best ones I take are usually the ones not planned.  But I do not consider myself too good with them and take better pictures of animals I think.

Digimax A50 / KENOX Q2

By far the subject of choice is flowers.  Even if I get a bouquet of cut flowers I usually focus in on one or two of the blooms.

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My next challenge is saving up and getting a DSLR and lots of memory cards to store pictures on.  Say cheese!

 

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A to Z Challenge – Origami

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O is for Origami

I wish I was a paper folding wizard who could make all sorts of animals and flowers, stars and boxes.  I am not.  But I can fold a dollar bill into a heart.  Many years ago in a stamping magazine there was instructions to fold a dollar bill into a heart.  I jumped at the change to learn this.

It had step by step instructions that I poured over for hours and I finally got something that resembled a heart.  Now years down the line I can do it without instructions or pictures and use it often for gifts of money in wedding cards.

I have also folded a shirt once. And made a frog with origami squares.  But my favorite is still the heart.  I would love to learn more… only takes a little time and patience.

Digimax A50 / KENOX Q2

 

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A to Z Challenge – Night Owl

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N is for night owl

I am a night owl.  I come from a family of night owls.  My Dad used to work the 11 to 7 over night shift and mom would often be up late listening to the scanner while he was working.  So, I grew up with a night time influence.  As we were getting ready for bed, Dad was just getting up and starting his “day” so, we wanted to stay up later of course to talk to Dad.  Some times Mom let us get away with it, but not often if it was a school night.

On the weekends and during summer vacation we didn’t have a set bedtime that I remember.  I remember so many nights trying to stay up late enough to watch the Creature Feature of TV.  I rarely made it that late and I probably would have been too scared to sleep if I had.

As I became an adult I tried to work night shifts as I would be up late and sleep in.  But the real world is not built for night owls and I did struggle to get to work when I had morning shifts.

I do still struggle with mornings.  I am a light sleeper but anything before 10 usually has to be done with multiple alarms set.  I am usually up until about 2 in the morning.  And I really like the quiet to think.  I feel some of my better writing happens after midnight.

As midnight approaches I draw on reflections of the day.  I take time to read, to write and sadly some night deal with my demons.  But I am sure I will always be a night owl.  I’ll be 75 in the nursing home with the radio on at midnight tapping my toes and wishing I could still dance to the music.  Are you a night owl too?

 

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A to Z Challenge – Mantra

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M is for mantra

According to a google search a mantra is “a statement or slogan repeated frequently.”  When I was at some of my worst depression and anxiety I tried to keep it simple but focus on the important.

My mantra is “Breathe in, breathe out” and I often shortened it to Bibo.  When I was going to be out in public I added smile to the end of it.  Bibos got me through a few rough work days… that and escapes to the bathroom to deep breathe and let out a few tears.  But I really did repeat Bibos in my head a lot.

There are many slogans that could be used as a mantra.  Do you have one?  Please share it in the comments if you do.

 

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A to Z Challenge – Laughter

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L is for laughter

*What color is the wind? Blew

Sometimes you just have to laugh.  Some days it is a matter of laughing so you don’t cry.  I do my best to try to spread laughter.  I do a letter of sorts for my therapist and I always have at least one joke or pun included.  I follow a couple of pun pages on Facebook and I get a daily email for my Pun of the Day.

*I’m friends with 25 letters of the alphabet… I don’t know Y.

My Dad was a big influence on my humor.  I remember growing up watching several different comedies on TV.  He would joke with us almost daily.  He even introduced me to a series of books from Piers Anthony about a place called Xanth.  Those books were full of puns.

*I ordered a chicken and an egg on Amazon.  I’ll let you know.

So try to find some laughter where ever you can.  They say a smile requires only about 1/2 of the muscles that a frown takes… conserve energy today LAUGH!

*Why can’t you hear a pterodactyl in the bathroom? Because it has a silent pee.

 

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A to Z Challenge – Kitty Cats

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K is for kitty cats

Kitty cats have been a big part of my life.  It all started with the hero cat than “followed” my sister home… she had to carry him across the busy streets buy otherwise he followed her home.  Because of the way he went after the fish in the aquarium he was named Ding-A-Ling.  One late night my mom heard the cat howling at the window.  she went to look and saw man outside cutting our garden hose.  She called the police, the guy ran off and the cat had saved the day.  We had him for years.

We had two brothers we adopted… Champagne and Caviar (an off white color and a black and grey).  Champagne was a lazy cat who got big enough he no longer fit on the window sill and fell out one day.  Caviar was the daredevil who actually got on top of the stairway door and just sat up there.  These brothers moved to a friends farm and lived out some of their mouse fantasies.

Kodiak, Kody for short, Dad said he looked like a kodiak bear.  He was a cuddle bug and was usually found next to my Mom.  We had him until he died under the dining room table when my parents were gone on vacation for the weekend and my sister stopped in to feed him but he was already gone.

The next cat we got was named Wrinkles… long story that has to do with a race car for some other time.  She was not the smartest kitty who more than once ran down the hall forgetting to stop or turn a little to avoid the wall.  She also found out she was declawed the hard way – running to the back of the couch and trying to attach to the screen only to slide down to the ground.  We had to get rid of her when we moved and got her a nice new home with the help of the local vet.

We had a cat I swear had a little Siamese in him, Izumi.  My daughter named him.  She also teased him too much and they didn’t always get along then.  But he was a good cat to me.  He ended up with my daughter’s best friend.  We still get pictures of him regularly.  He is about 12 years only now… really getting up there in years.

That brings me to my three legged cat.  Stumpy was born with three legs and a Stump… following where his name came from?  We got him when a friend had to move and could only take one of his two cats to the new apartment.  He was my shadow everyday until he got very sick with ketoacidosis and had to be put to sleep in my arms.  I still so miss that boy!

Leaving our current kitty Chevy.  She was a farm cat that was the runt of the litter and there were fears she would never make it on the farm.  She is now a TOTALLY SPOILED little princess of a kitty.  But she has her sweet side to when she will sit next to you when you are having a bad day.  I hope we have her for a lot more years!

I loved each and everyone of them and will never forget them.  They were a part of the family for sure.  Have you got a kitty cat?

 

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A to Z Challenge – Java

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J is for java

It all started innocently enough.  Getting the honor of making Dad coffee before he left for his overnight shift and the police station.  I still remember the three scoops of Folgers going into the percolator plugging it in and waiting.  I couldn’t drink Dad’s coffee though, he drank it black.  Now Mom on the other hand took cream and sugar with hers and I could occasionally get a drink.

As I hit my teens I tried coffee again and found it bitter so I steered clear of it.  But once I got married to a coffee drinker I was stirred by the aroma once again.  I would occasionally have a cup with milk and sugar.  When I became a sleep deprived parent I leaned a little more heavily on the java.

In the early 2000’s our little town got a coffee shop in it.  I was heavily into tea at the time and fell in love with the shops spiced Chai.  One day for something different I had a latte… that is when the problems began.

From there I was hitting area coffee shops for lattes and mochas.  An occasional Frappuccino or the much cheaper Frappe from McDonald’s.  Now I frequent gas station cappuccino machines and stay close to my Keurig here at home.  I have a Starbuck’s gold card and I frequent the local shops too.  I admit it … I am a coffee-aholic! And I don’t want to be cured!  Pass the brown sugar and cinnamon (my latest taste of choice), please!

 

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A to Z Challenge – Ink

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I is for Ink

I love to get ink on my hands.  I am a crafter and my craft of choice is rubber stamping.  I stamp my own greeting cards, decorate letters and a few pages for scrap-booking.  I like to get glue under my nails and glitter, well it goes EVERYWHERE even if you’re really careful with it.  I have dye ink and pigment ink.  Brush pens and embossing markers.  Small individual colors and multi-colored pad. Flat ink and puff paint.  And then there is my collection of stamps… wooden, clear and cubed multi-sided.  I stamp, emboss, punch, embellish, and have all sorts of fun.  Tomorrow I must get a little ink on my hands (no matter how careful I am I ALWAYS do) and make a birthday card and a thinking of you card for two friends.  I have the TOY card all planned out and an idea for the birthday card.  It is so much fun!

 

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A to Z Challenge – Higher Power

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H is for Higher Power

I may regret this one, they say never talk about politics or religion, and I rarely do.  This is a very personal thing to me.  For years I didn’t know how to sum it up, then I started going to Alanon and heard a “higher power” described as anything having more power than you.  It could be science, nature, music, God, etc.  Without going into great detail, let’s just say this idea clicked with me.

I grew up with a Mom who was VERY against organized religion as her grandmother gave away her life savings to the church.  I have always found it odd that reading the same book can bring about dramatically different views on what it means.  So in that same sense I don’t believe in organized religion – it is just another form of a social gathering really.

My Dad tended to lean to more scientific evidence.  How can you argue with the facts right?  I still didn’t fit in 100% with no God, no higher power so, I still searched.  I liked the stories of the Gods for different areas in Greek, Roman and Norse mythology.  I liked the views of Mother Earth and Father Time.  I pulled a little bit from each of them.

Like I said the higher power theory stuck a chord with me.  At the time I was doing a lot of soul searching and taking walks in nature (parks, lake, trails).  I could go from total chaos dealing with an alcoholic, to a relative calm in nature hearing the birds sing and crickets chirp.  It was an “awakening.”

Now I say I do believe in a higher power.  I am still not sure of his/her/its name, but I know there are things of beauty in nature that just take my breath away… something is responsible for that and I am eternally grateful for that higher power.

 

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