Monday, April 9, 2012

In The Blink of an Eye

I hope that each of you had a wonderful weekend.  Ours was filled with good food and lots of yard work!

Last week Mr. Tide and I took off for the day and went to a place where we had our first "real" date so many years ago.

It's a sailing town, one of the best in the world, and somewhere that I've spent a great deal of time in, even before Mr. Tide and I met while racing sailboats that fateful evening.

Even though we are so very blessed to live on the water, being near sailboats or boats of any sort makes me feel at home.  Maybe it's because I have been on the water since I was born really, heck, my baby book shows that my first boat ride was long before I could even walk.

Being out on the water is where I find comfort, it has always been the place I turn to when I'm feeling low or over the moon's a part of who I am, and happily it has become a part of Mr. Tide and our children as well.

And being near beautiful boats, seeing ropes neatly coiled, sails furled, and hearing the sound of waves lapping on their hulls, made me realize that while I've been here on my computer, taking care of ailing parents, or busy doing work for the past 10 or so years, I have missed that salt air and the medicinal value it has for someone like me.

When our son was on a sailing team a few years ago, I felt the tug at my heartstrings once again, but I let it go as we had house remodeling and things like that requiring our immediate attention, but I think it's time now.

Time I got back to doing the things I love to do.  Time I did less sitting and more moving.  Time I found those little pieces that are buried deep inside me, but still clamoring to be heard from again.

The way life is clicking by so quickly, I don't want to wake up and find that twenty years have flown by the way the last twenty have, and that suddenly I can't do the things I want to do any longer.  That's how life works sometimes, you blink and when you finally open your eyes you realize so much time has passed.

So for now, if you are looking for me, you might just try gazing out to sea, or on a tennis court somewhere, or maybe even a place I haven't discovered yet.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Quiet Easter

Easter at our house this year will be very low key.

I'll be catching up on email, doing some work stuff, and generally taking it easy...well if taking it easy means spreading 120 bags of mulch which are scheduled for delivery tomorrow morning!

So on Sunday, if I'm able to move, we'll head to church and then enjoy a special Easter dinner.  I'm still not sure what I'm fixing since cooking a whole ham, our traditional dinner of choice, would be way too much for just the 3 of us.

Our daughter is fixing dinner at her place and invited us to come, but having to drive that far, and asking someone to take care of the dogs on Easter Sunday wasn't really a very good option, so we'll be doing our own thing.

I've spoken to a few friends, and even my extended family, and it seems we are all having a low key holiday this year.  It's funny how some years you have 20 people and other years it's more quiet and calm.  

Whether you are having a big dinner with all the trimmings, or just a quiet day, I hope you each have a very Happy Easter!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Lovely Lilacs

Hello lovely lilacs...I've been waiting for you.

For the sweet fragrance of your blooms.

For your delicate petals to open so that I could capture them and turn their beauty into art.

Though your blossoms are already works of art.

Not requiring any manipulation on my part...yet still I do.

Because I can't help myself.

Maybe because I am delirious from your heady fragrance which smells like sunshine and sweetness all rolled in to one.

We wait with baited breath for you to return each spring...and oh the wait is so worth it!

And so I will leave you just as you are, beautiful in your simplicity, able to conjure up childhood memories, and the perfect compliment to white pitchers everywhere!  Thank you lovely lilacs...until we meet again!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Summer Breeze

Today has been warm and breezy...the kind of day where you just want to be outside and on a beach somewhere.

Actually I did a little bit of both.  This afternoon I had lunch with my dear friend Anna, and we ate outside which was so wonderful this early in the year.  She filled me in on her recent trip to Costa Rica and some cool coastal ideas she has in the works, so when I got home I had to go hang out by the water for a bit, just to get a little beach vibe going.

I know summer is just around the corner and my whole being is craving it. Even my pictures reflect it with their beachy blues and greens.

If we continue to have weather like this, it won't be long before my flip flops are out of the closet and shorts and t-shirts become my new uniform.  Ahh, is there anything quite as wonderful as those warm summer breezes?!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Dreaming in Black and White

I've been dreaming, or maybe scheming of a way to get back over to France.  The last time I was there, we didn't have enough time to visit Paris, and my heart longs to stroll her city streets.  My heart also longs to revisit places in the south that were once home to our daughter.

It would be a working trip, requiring many long hours of photographing beautiful sites and taste testing food of course...but I think I am up to the challenge of all of this strenuous work! ;-)

Before I go, I will need to consider the physical harm I might have to endure, you know, neck strain from looking up...

And those thigh crushing, ahem...toning hills that parts of France are so famous for.  It may not look steep in this photo, but trust me it was!  And if you ever want to feel inadequate, stand on the steepest street you can find in France and watch as women in 4 inch heels glide up these uneven cobblestone surfaces, closely followed by people in their 90s lugging their daily groceries!

I have to admit that I was totally bummed when we didn't win the mega millions.  First of all I was just sure we would win, I mean we never buy tickets, and the odds were SO in our favor, but alas it wasn't to be.  Had I won though, you can bet your bottom dollar that the first thing after talking to an attorney, a few charities, and a financial planner would have been contacting a realtor in France to purchase my weekend home.

I would have booked my ticket to France so quickly that it would have made anyone's head spin.

It's funny how certain places grab hold of your heart and never let go.  And it's not as if I have visited France many times, but the time I have spent there has given me wonderful memories...which I hope to add to in the years to come.

I want to thank all of the new visitors that have stopped by from Diana's lovely blog today!  It's so nice to have you here, and I truly appreciate you stopping by!  Thank you for the sweet shout out Diana!

If I truly ever did win the lottery, I would hope I would do something exactly like this!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Patience is a Virtue

There is really nothing I love to do more than to manipulate images.  If you had told me a year ago I would say this I would have laughed, looked at you kind of funny, and then backed away slowly! ;-)

But it's true, I now enjoy pushing the bounds of my limited abilities and learning something new every day.  It's a form of relaxation and meditation for me, and the added bonus of maybe being able to sell some of these is like icing on the cake!

The biggest challenge I face when I start messing with my images is knowing when to stop, when to put the mouse down and leave well enough alone.  

I once heard a photographer who does lots of post processing (and whose name I have momentarily forgotten) say that he finds that some of his best work comes from images he has walked away from and then revisited later.  That by not feeling like you have to finish something in one sitting you can often find the true vision of the image.  I love that idea, and I now try and subscribe to it, even though I'm fairly impatient and like to get something done all at once.

The image above is a great example.  First I started with just the flowers in the vase, adding textures, messing with the hue and saturation, and then I left it alone for a bit.  Then I remembered a beautiful old french post card that I had that I thought would fit beautifully on the right side of the image which had a good deal of dead space.  And then finally, because I felt it needed a little something else and couldn't figure out how anyone would use this image, I decided to add the "Happy Easter" wishes at the top in pink.  Now I can see it as an Easter card.

Sometimes patience really is a virtue I guess!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Happiness Is...

Having no weeds in your flower beds...thanks to your husband!

Old French script.

Flowering Almond blossoms.

Finding time to take a few pictures.

I hope each of you found a little happiness of your own this weekend, and that you find even more this week!