Tag Archives: journal

Swap-bot: Shutterbuggin’ [2]

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Hi folks! Today’s post is for a Swap-bot swap. This swap is a general swap, second in a series, that asks for the participants to share three different pictures. The first two will always have the same theme, a picture I took this month and a picture I took last month. The third picture will have a different theme. This time, the theme is a picture I took of something in nature.

All of my pictures were taken on my cellphone, as that’s what I have handy. It’s a Galaxy S7, and so the camera is pretty decent.

First up, a picture I took last month (September 2017):

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This was taken at a cliff that surrounds the valley in which I work. It goes by several names, Sugar Loaf, Dixie Rock, Pioneer Park…there are others. I love the view from up here. I liked the way the clouds looked in the background. Were we still back east/down south these clouds would have meant a rain storm was coming. That is not the case here. We got some wind, that is all.

Next, we have a picture I took this month (October 2017):

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I took the girls I work with to Zion over our fall break. Not all of them came, the idea of hiking was just a bit much for some of them. Those that did come though, I think that they truly enjoyed the experience. This picture was taken from the vantage point of Weeping Rock. This is one of the more popular hikes in Zion, not much of a hike really, it’s paved all the way up. And the last bit of it is kind of steep, but not so much that you couldn’t take a stroller, which I have done before.

Which leads us right into the last picture, a picture of something I took in nature:

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Another picture taken during the same trip to Zion. This one shows the sun just cresting the mountains as seen from the Emerald Pools trail. I’ve only ever done the lower pools, because it’s paved and you can take a stroller and small children with not much stress. But this time, we went all the way to the top pool. It was an almost transcendent experience. It was well worth the boulders you have to climb over in parts, and the sand that you have to mush through to get there. It was a magnificent day.

I hope you have enjoyed looking at my pictures. More to come later, I am sure!

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Swap-bot: Something that made me happy – September

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Hi folks! Today’s post is for a Swap-bot swap. This one is for the group Electronic Swaps, which, as you can imagine, a group dedicated to electronic (e-mail, pintrest, etc.) swaps. This lovely swap has the directions to, as the title suggests, share something that made me happy during the month of September.

September was a month of changes for me. The biggest change, aside from a job as a therapist that requires a masters degree (no pressure there, right?) was that we moved from North Carolina where we’d be living for a year on the boarder with Virginia, to Southern Utah. Talk about big. I drove the whole way. Kansas was the worst of it. Very flat, lots of farms. At one point, I called my dad to talk and the GPS said I had 3 hours to go till I hit Colorado. I talked for an hour and a half (I had to stop for gas). The GPS still said I had three hours to go. I wish I was kidding (please don’t be offended if you are from Kansas, I’m sure it’s a lovely state).

So, photo heavy post coming up! The kids left North Carolina before I did and in August, so the last picture we have of all of us with the Andy Griffith statue outside the Andy Griffith Theater and Andy Griffith Museum will have to wait for another day. But here I am on my trip, with my traveling companion Trek, the three foot tall triceratops.

Me and Trek, day 1

He belongs to my daughter, and had I not said I would bring him in the car with me, she would have attempted to cram him into her suit case.

The first day, I made it from where I was in North Carolina, up through Virginia (to hit up a few Virginia LOVEworks signs) into Tennessee and ended the night outside the Nashville Tennessee LDS Temple where I spent the night (in an attempt to save money I slept in the car all but one night). I saw the Grand Ole Opry and downtown Nashville, which apparently doesn’t open until 10:00.

Day two saw me making a visit to the cemetery where many of my grandpas relatives are buried, though no one lives in Tennessee now. I pushed through and stopped in Metropolis Illinois where they have a giant Superman statue. I caught a glimpse of the Mississippi River, the St. Louis Arch, the LDS temple in St. Louis, the Ohio River, and I don’t even remember it all (and not in that order). I spent the night at the Kansas City LDS temple. I had hopped to make it a bit further, but I was falling asleep at the wheel and decided to error on the side of caution.

Day three brought the Missouri River, and Kansas…yeah. I was ready to be done by that point I think. However, I did get to stop at the “Brown vs. Board of Education” memorial site in Topeka, and the Russel Stover factory, which was good for chocolate. I hit Colorado, and then Denver just about dinner time. I visited the Denver temple and then, took advantage of a friend who lives near Denver and spent the night in a real bed and with a hot shower. Life was good, despite Kansas.

Day four was my last day on the road. I stopped to see the grave of my great grandfather. Half an hour, two grounds people, and several phone calls latter, it was discovered that he never had a headstone. So instead of pictures of grave stones as I took in Tennessee, I took a picture of a lovely patch of grass that was freshly mowed. I hit Utah just after 6:00 pm, and drove another four or five hours till I hit my parents house. Where I collapsed into my mom’s rocking recliner and slept all night.

I swear in the two weeks I was separated from my kids, my daughter grew about three inches and is now wearing the same size shoe as I am. This wouldn’t be a big deal if it wasn’t for the fact that she’s 10, and I’m just not ready. One of the best parts of Southern Utah is the close proximity to the beautiful red rocks. The Navajo Sandstone that forms the backdrop to my daily commute is the same formation that forms the Grand Canyon. I do so love this part of the country.

Swap-bot: Shutterbuggin’ [1]

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Hi folks! Today’s post is for a Swap-bot swap. This swap is a general swap, first in a series, that asks for the participants to share three different pictures. The first two will always have the same theme, a picture I took this month and a picture I took last month. The third picture will have a different theme. This time, the theme is a picture I took in black and white.

All of my pictures were taken on my cellphone, as that’s what I have handy. It’s a Galaxy S7, and so the camera is pretty decent.

First up, a picture I took this month (September 2017):

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This is Trek. He is my daughters’ dinosaur, she got him for Christmas a few years back, and she loves him almost as much as her blankie she’s had since she was a baby. We recently moved across the country, the kids flew and I drove. And had I not said I would bring Trek in the car with me, she would have found a way to cram him into her suitcase. Trek was my driving buddy from one side of the country to the other. Here, he is less than impressed with Kansas. No offence if you are from Kansas or love Kansas, but I was less than impressed. I may have been just a bit tired of driving at that point though, so my perception could be skewed slightly.

Second-a picture from last month (August 2017):

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I was going to use a picture that I took during the “Great American Eclipse”, but as I was going through my camera roll, I saw this picture and just had to share it. The school I worked at before our move, had a little dirt patch in the front where they planted flowers. In the spring they are all bulbs and such. But this past summer, they seeded wild flowers. Oh, they variety was amazing! So colorful! And as one type died, another came in. Middle of August, about the same time as the eclipse, I was walking back to the building past this patch of flowers and this butterfly was alight on one of the flowers. This was as close as I dared get for fear that it would fly away.

The last picture I have is one in black and white:

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I am LDS, and for us, our temples are very sacred places. For the past four years I have lived 3-4 hours from the closest temple. It has been hard to get to one, and I have felt the absence of one close to me. One of the benefits of being back in the west, specifically back in Utah, is that I no longer have to plan for a full days travel to see the temple, to go to the temple. This is the temple closest to me. My parents were married there. And while my parents are close enough to walk, I am still only a 15 minute drive away. I love it.

 

Swap-bot: ESG: My favorite picture of the month July

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Hi folks! Today’s post is for a Swap-bot swap. This one is for the group Electronic Swaps, which, as you can imagine, a group dedicated to electronic (e-mail, pintrest, etc.) swaps. This lovely swap has the directions to, as the title suggests, is my favorite picture for the month of July.

 

I don’t usually like selfies. but this month was different. From the top left:

  1. I am LDS, going to the temple is a privilege for those of us able to go inside. I don’t usually go, I have to borrow the specific clothes, but I needed to go, a very strong feeling, and towards the end of the month I was able to make it to the closest temple (it’s about three hours away). This is the picture I took while there, I do so love the peaceful feeling that I get there.
  2. 4th of July fireworks. When I was a kid I lived in an area where personal fireworks were illegal. When I moved somewhere where you could buy fountains and other types of fireworks, I have loved them all.
  3. My daughter and I went on a hike along the Blue Ridge Parkway and came across this picnic table that looks like it was used by fairies. I love it.
  4. Virginia has these “Love” monuments all over the state. My graduate university had one installed the year I left. This was my first opportunity to go back and see it. i had to take a picture with it, which I think turned out pretty nice.
  5. This picture of me and my daughter was taken on the same hike that we saw the fairy table. It was a lovely day.

Swap-bot: ESG: Something that made me happy this month July

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Hello! Back again with another Swap-bot swap. This one is for the group Electronic Swaps, which, as you can imagine, a group dedicated to electronic (e-mail, pintrest, etc.) swaps. This lovely swap has the directions to, as the title suggests, tell about something that made me happy during the month of July.

4th of July

The 4th of July is always a fun holiday for me. This year was the first in a while that we didn’t watch a big fireworks show. I decided that I just couldn’t deal with the traffic coming from the event. Not enough exit space. But, my kids and I were able to set off a bunch of fountains and other smaller fireworks in front of our apartment. I think that has always been my favorite part. It was a lovely evening, and the breeze was in our favor, blowing the smoke away from us.

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My second happy moment came on a short hike with my daughter. We were up on the Blue Ridge Parkway and stopped at Rocky Knobb to do a short hike. Well, we ended up missing the trail head and just doing the picnic area loop. But I’m glad that we did. If we hadn’t, I never would have seen this adorable set up. Being as humid as it is, there is a lot of moss around, but this was the only table that we saw completely covered in moss, and with the stumps as chairs, it almost looks like a fairy table.

Swap-bot: ESG: 100 questions 2.0

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Hi folks! Today’s post is for a Swap-bot swap. This one is for the group Electronic Swaps, which, as you can imagine, a group dedicated to electronic (e-mail, pintrest, etc.) swaps. This swap is a bit different, this one is a list of questions. 100 to be exact. I hope you all enjoy them.

  1. Put your iTunes/media player on shuffle. Give me the first 6 songs that pop up.
    1. “Shamey, Shamey, Shame” Billy Gilman
    2. “The First Noel” Brian McKnight
    3. “Why’d You Come in Here Looking Like That” Dolly Parton
    4. “Thank Heaven For Little Girls” Michael Ballam
    5. “A Never Ending Dream” CASCADA
    6. “The Shoes You’re Wearing” Clint Black
  2. If you could meet anyone on this earth, who would it be?
    1. Living, or dead? Because, Jesus would be awesome, but he’s dead. Maybe the Pope, and I’m not even Catholic, it’s just very unattainable to me.
  3. Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 23, give me line 17.
    1. “an individual who appears to have major depressive disorder is unable to give an ade-” (from the DSM-5)
  4. What do you think about most?
    1. my kids
  5. What does your latest text message from someone else say?
    1. “well, goodnight”
  6. Do you sleep with or without clothes on?
    1. Depends on what you mean by clothes. I don’t sleep stark naked, but I rarely wear pajamas unless I’m somewhere or there are people over.
  7. What’s your strangest talent?
    1. The ability to make penis jokes at 3:00 AM when stone cold sober
  8. What is the most romantic thing you have ever done?
    1. I I’ve not a drop of romance in me, I just like watching romantic movies.
  9. Ever had a poem or song written about you?
    1. My ex wrote a song about me for our wedding, but he never preformed it
  10. When is the last time you played the air guitar?
    1. In the car on the way to Walmart tonight
  11. Do you have any strange phobias?
    1. No, all my phobias are “normal”
  12. Ever stuck a foreign object up your nose?
    1. Only my finger, when I was younger
  13. What’s your religion?
    1. I’m a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, aka LDS or Mormon
  14. If you are outside, what are you most likely doing?
    1. Going for a walk and cursing the humidity
  15. Do you prefer to be behind the camera or in front of it?
    1. Depends on the day
  16. Simple but extremely complex. Favorite band/singer?
    1. Can’t just pick one…um…Going to go with…Lets say, today, Willy Nelson
  17. What was the last lie you told?
    1. “Oh, that’s interesting”
  18. Do you believe in karma?
    1. Yes and no
  19. What does your user name mean?
    1. That I wasn’t thinking and just used my real name
  20. What is your greatest weakness, and your greatest strength?
    1. I’m a push over, I will keep doing things for you even when I shouldn’t. But I am also loving and caring
  21. Who is your celebrity crush?
    1. Depends on the day/show I’ve been watching. Right now, David Tennant (I’m watching Broadchurch)
  22. Have you ever gone skinny dipping?
    1. no
  23. How do you vent your anger?
    1. Go for a walk, yell, drive aggressively, cry.
  24. Do you have a collection of anything?
    1. Mostly no, but I do have a small collection of Funco Pop Vinyl figures
  25. Do you prefer talking on the phone or video chatting on-line?
    1. Depends on the day/situation. I’ll video chat at holidays, but phones usually
  26. Are you happy with the person you’ve become?
    1. Generally
  27. What’s a sound you hate and a sound you love?
    1. Ice, rubbing together greats on my ears. Babies laughing, on the other hand, cheers my soul
  28. What’s your biggest “what if”?
    1. What if the Zombie apocalypses actually happens?
  29. Do you believe in ghosts? How about aliens?
    1. Yes, I believe in ghosts, though I don’t think that most of them are inherently evil. I also believe in aliens, always have.
  30. Stick your right arm out; what do you touch first? Do the same with your left arm.
    1. The book case next to my bed. My box of stickers (I’m working on a stuffed envelope swap)
  31. Smell the air. What do you smell?
    1. Popcorn, guacamole, and rain
  32. What’s the worst place you have ever been to?
    1. That’s tough, I like most places I’ve been…but I never was a fan of Boise, ID.
  33. Choose: East Coast or West Coast?
    1. West
  34. Most attractive singer of your opposite gender?
    1. I don’t look at singers very often, I really couldn’t say.
  35. To you, what is the meaning of life?
    1. 42 (sorry, Douglas Adams Joke)
  36. Define: Art.
    1. Oooo, that’s a tough one. Art is a myriad of styles and forms created to please the eye.
  37. Do you believe in luck?
    1. Not really.
  38. What’s the weather like right now?
    1. Humid. Just had a storm pass through, so that’s helped the ambient temperature, but not the humidity.
  39. What time is it?
    1. 9:25 pm
  40. Do you drive? If so, have you ever crashed?
    1. Daily. My commute is a good hour plus one way,so I drive a lot. Have I ever crashed? Not really? Had a fender bender in the paring lot at the mall and had a deer jump onto my car from a corn field ($5000 in damage to my new to me car that I hadn’t even made the first payment on).
  41. What was the last book you read?
    1. Bible
  42. Do you like the smell of gasoline?
    1. No
  43. Do you have any nicknames?
    1. Not since I was a kid, and non that I would answer to.
  44. What was the last movie you saw?
    1. Sing!
  45. What’s the worst injury you’ve ever had?
    1. Put my foot through a glass aquarium (not one of my finer moments) ended up needing five stitches.
  46. Have you ever caught a butterfly?
    1. No, I’ve never needed to, I’ve always been able to observe them at rest.
  47. Do you have any obsessions right now?
    1. Just caught up on Broadchurch, I can’t wait to see the last season.
  48. What’s your sexual orientation?
    1. Heterosexual
  49. Ever had a rumor spread about you?
    1. Not to my knowledge
  50. Do you believe in magic?
    1. Like Harry Potter magic? No.
  51. Do you tend to hold grudges against people who have done you wrong?
    1. No, I don’t have the energy for that.
  52. What is your astrological sign?
    1. Libra
  53. Do you save money or spend it?
    1. Spend it. I’m trying to change that, but it hasn’t happened yet.
  54. What’s the last thing you purchased?
    1. Washi tape and stationary paper
  55. Love or lust?
    1. Love
  56. In a relationship?
    1. Engaged
  57. How many relationships have you had?
    1. Lots, but only two serious ones (including the one I’m in right now)
  58. Can you touch your nose with your tongue?
    1. Yes
  59. Where were you yesterday?
    1. Home, went to Wal-Mart at one point, Church in the evening.
  60. Is there anything pink within 10 feet of you?
    1. The fabric ATC I’m working for for another swap
  61. Are you wearing socks right now?
    1. No
  62. What’s your favorite animal?
    1. Cats (the domestic type)
  63. What is your secret weapon to get someone to like you?
    1. Kindness and listening
  64. Where is your best friend?
    1. Other side of the country from me.
  65. Do you have children? If yes, would you like any more? If no, do you eventually want any?
    1. Yes, I have 2 (ages 14 and 10). I’m not sure if I want more or not. At this point it would be starting all over and I just don’t know if I have the energy for it.
  66. What is your heritage?
    1. Mostly German and British. I’m essentially little white girl
  67. What were you doing last night at 12 AM?
    1. Just finished season 2 of Broadchurch and was contemplating sleeping
  68. What is your favorite book?
    1. Don’t really have one, but I love Harry Potter
  69. Be honest, what do you think of Justin Bieber?
    1. His attitude is atrocious, don’t care for his early music, but some of his recent stuff isn’t bad.
  70. Are you the kind of friend you would want to have as a friend?
    1. Yes, though I do tend to complain
  71. You are walking down the street on your way to work. There is a dog drowning in the canal on the side of the street. Your boss has told you if you are late one more time you get fired. What do you do?
    1. Save the dog. There will always be another job, but I couldn’t live with myself if I didn’t do anything
  72. You are at the doctor’s office and she has just informed you that you have approximately one month to live. a) Do you tell anyone/everyone you are going to die? b) What do you do with your remaining days? c) Would you be afraid?
    1. I would tell my family and my job (I work with kids who have mental health issues, work would need to find someone to cover for me). I would want to spend as much time with my friends and family as possible. I am not afraid of death, but I would be sad.
  73. You can only have one of these things: trust or love.
    1. Love
  74. What’s a song that always makes you happy when you hear it?
    1. Anything by The Beach Boys
  75. What are the last four digits in your cell phone number?
    1. Nope
  76. In your opinion, what makes a great relationship?
    1. Love and trust and communication
  77. How can I win your heart?
    1. Right now? Chocolate
  78. Can insanity bring on more creativity?
    1. I think that those whose minds are not “typical” can lead to may different aspects, including insanity and creativity, but one does not necessarily lead to the other.
  79. What is the single best decision you have made in your life so far?
    1. Leaving my ex-husband
  80. What size shoes do you wear?
    1. Womans 9.5
  81. What would you want to be written on your tombstone?
    1. My name, when I was born, where I died.
  82. What is your favorite word?
    1. Awesome
  83. Give me the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word: heart.
    1. beating
  84. What is a saying you say a lot?
    1. Too Bad
  85. What’s the last song you listened to?
    1. Fight song from Final Fantasy 10
  86. Basic question: what’s your favorite color/colors?
    1. Green
  87. What is your current desktop picture?
    1. Mid century abstract design.
  88. If you could press a button and make anyone in the world instantaneously explode, who would it be?
    1. I really don’t hate anyone enough to do that.
  89. What would be a question you’d be afraid to tell the truth on?
    1. How much money I spend
  90. Where is the one place in the world you would love to visit?
    1. British Isles
  91. You accidentally eat some radioactive vegetables. They were good, and what’s even cooler is that they endow you with the super-power of your choice! What is that power?
    1. Hum…ability to read minds at will (not all the time, that would get overwhelming)
  92. You can re-live any point of time in your life. The time-span can only be a half-hour, though. What half-hour of your past would you like to experience again?
    1. Don’t like to live in the past
  93. You can erase any horrible experience from your past. What will it be?
    1. I’ve got to be bumbing people out with these questions, but I honestly don’t have any experiences so horrible I would want to make them go away forever.
  94. Do you enjoy watching television? If yes, what are your favorite shows to watch?
    1. Oh, yes, I do. I enjoy all sorts of shows, dramas (crime dramas mostly) and comedies. Anything good really.
  95. You just got a free plane ticket to anywhere. You have to depart right now. Where are you going to go?
    1. To visit my family on the other side of the country.
  96. Do you have any relatives in jail?
    1. Not that I know of
  97. Have you ever thrown up in the car?
    1. No, I’ve always managed to make it to the side of the road first.
  98. Ever been on a plane?
    1. Several times
  99. If the whole world were listening to you right now, what would you say?
    1. Stop hating everyone
  100. Give me your top 5 favorite blogs that you visit often.
    1. I don’t have 5, but I do have a few: Cake Wrecks and Mid-Century Menu

Swap-bot: Share Some Photos!

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Hello everyone! Today’s post is for a Swap-bot swap. This swap wants me to share five of my favorite photos that I have taken. Man, that’s a lot of pictures to look through. postcard 1This picture I like so much that it’s going to be the one I send out for a “your own photo” postcard swap later this summer. This was taken recently (June 1, 2017) up on the Blue Ridge Parkway near the Virginia/North Carolina boarder. If I recall correctly, this cabin belonged to a woman who was a midwife and helped deliver an outrageously high number of babies in her time.

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A few posts ago I shared about my daughter’s girl scout troop putting up bird houses near Pilot Mountain. I took this picture at the same time. I just loved the way that the stream was going through trees and the light and the green.

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This shot was taken on the Blue Ridge Parkway (I like the views) on April 21, 2017. The tree was the wall paper on my phone for a while. I love the gnarled branches, and how everything else is blooming, but this one tree. Just the way it’s like off on its own.

20170119_070706This is the moon shining through the leafless trees on a cold January night of this year. I person it was much more impressive, but I still love the way that it looks. I really like the way things look through tree branches I suppose.

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I love Main Street. This was the big snow storm of the year (January 7, 2017) and my kids and I took a walk up through the snow around and about to Main Street, where I took this picture. An hour earlier and there would have been more snow on the roads, but at this point there were a lot of cars that had been driving down melting the snow, and even a few responsible store owners out clearing the snow from the sidewalks. Still, I love the way Main Street looks and the snow.