Long Goodbyes

I’m that person who reaches her third or fourth close before finally hanging up the phone.

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I’m that lady that kisses and cuddles everyone at least a second time before boarding the plane.

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I’m the girl who searches endlessly for friends from my childhood on Facebook (where could they be?)

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I hate good-byes…so they are rather long when I have to give them. Summer is leaving me and all I want to do is hold on tight and never let go!

Maybe

I won’t

say good-bye.

See yah soon, summer.

I’ll be waiting.

One Word Photo a Challenge: Mauve

Hope you enjoy!

A Portrait of Nephews

Water.

Cool.

Crisp.

Invigorating.

Fresh.

My sister, Evie and contributing photographer, perfectly captured the relationship that my nephew and son share in these photos. Josh is nearly two decades older than Christopher. My son, mischievous and sometimes trying, loved to provoke interaction but sometimes bit off more than he could chew. He always went back for more because the relationship they share is as fresh as a pool full of water on a hot summer’s day. 

    

    

  

  

  

  

  

  

  WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

(Photo credit: Evie Hartness, contributing photographer)

My Braver Generation

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Before having my children, I was not a brave soul. I told you in my post Lost Puppies and The Miracle of Frienship how I wanted the good things in life but feared going after them. I did not want my children to live consumed in fear of: water, trying new things, living fully, or being who they truly are.

I was not disappointed…they both are amazing.

They continually surprise me with what they are willing to just ‘give-a-go’.

My daughter wanted to join a band in high school so she taught herself to play the bass guitar. I remember thinking, “Seriously?” She just shrugged her shoulders and said, “yeah, no big deal.” Umm, everything in my young life was a big deal, too hard and seemingly impossible. Yet, it was natural to her to just do it. I was really proud of her but even more so, I was happy that she was so brave…braver than I had been as a teen.deeclarknz.com

Last summer when I was home with my family, my son was playing around with my mother’s piano. Pianos have a magnetism for children. Mine have always loved to sit at mom’s piano until the adults run them off because of the noise. By the end of the visit, my son had taught himself to play several songs by watching YouTube videos. He learned to play Frozen because my niece filled the house singing it several times a day. I loved that he was high school football player that learned to play a song for a five-year old. Brave and kind.

My children inspire me.

They show me that fear does not have to stand in your way.

They prove that you can do anything you set your mind to and are brave enough to attempt.

So, I got my keyboard out of storage the other day…and searched YouTube for a piano teacher. 😉

Because they are brave, I am, too.

Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Music

Good Morning From Bluff

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If you wake me each morning with the sound of your loving voice,
I’ll go to sleep each night trusting in you.
Point out the road I must travel;
I’m all ears, all eyes before you. ~David the Psalmist

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The season is quickly changing. Fall’s crisp air is hovering but the sun is still shining brightly, especially this morning.

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The ferry is already returning from Stewart Island with tourists, workers and locals returning to the mainland.

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Flower petals reach longingly for the last bit of sun as it’s time for them to begin the winter sleep…not long now.

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Signs of fall are undeniable.

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I sense the spiders have spun all night taking advantage of the empty spaces left by the falling pedals.

It’s morning in Bluff! My day is planned: exercise, window painting and other household chores and watch for the solar eclipse…

then I’ll take some time to receive God’s loving-kindness and spend some lingering moments in the sunshine before it wonders off to heat another part of the world.

Good morning!

Lost Puppies and The Miracle of Friendship

deeclarknz.comAt the end of the 90’s, I was struggling. My marriage was failing, I felt lost and I was tremendously lonely in my circumstances. Oddly enough, my ex-husband whispered, to an acquaintance, that he felt I needed a friend. And I did. This young woman walked through my office door, sat down -friendly and welcoming. She was full of compassion, and genuine warmth. That day, she extended an invitation and I accepted. We became friends.

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I didn’t know much about friendship. Most of my life I had never lived in one place long enough to develop anything long or lasting. I envied other kids who had known each other since the first year they began attending school. I had much to learn.

I had no freedom of expression. I rarely shared deep emotions. I maintained a consistent protective distance. All the while longing for the very thing I was pushing away. I possessed no self-esteem or confidence or sense of identity even though I worked diligently to produce a well put together exterior to hide that fact.

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Once my marriage began failing, often people would tell me that they thought I had it all together and lived a perfect life. That’s the problem with the perfectionist tendencies that consumed my life…they caused me to create a false reality -a facade – to hide away the mess that was on the inside. I was great at hiding. I desperately wanted to be invisible as if that would prevent the pain or ease it in some way. But it didn’t. It never did. In fact, I had an appetite for good things in life: laughter, joy, sunshine, celebration, and happiness.

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Instead I was like a wounded puppy afraid of everything I desired. 

 My new friend was thoughtful and sincere. she possessed a curiosity that seemed to drive her to explore new things. I found warmth of heart. I think at the beginning of our relationship she was more like a mentor. Although I didn’t want to be a project or someone for her to help, I was. She began to teach me how to live a full life out of Wisdom. We spent hours praying and searching for practical ways to live a healthy, vibrant life from the best source of Wisdom I had ever found. 

She encouraged me to change the way I thought about life and living in a non-constricting way that was freeing to my spirit, body and mind; relieving repressions.

Wisdom stimulated my creativity, ambition, and drive. Enthusiasm  for life began to fill my heart. I found a willingness to embrace new ideas with enjoyment and a sense of exploration and creative play.

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The more that wholeness and well-being began to take place, the more our relationship changed and deepened from mentorship to friendship. We became peers. We challenged each other to be better versions of ourselves. We disagreed at times. We applied forgiveness when necessary. We supported and encouraged each other. And then I moved to New Zealand, some 10,000 kms away. It was a huge adjustment for both of us. 

I miss her in my day to day living. Now, we meet across the miles via technology, sip coffee together, and share our hearts in a different way than when we began. 

This little figurine sits on my dresser reminding me: I don’t feel like a lost puppy anymore and I am blessed with the miracle of friendship.

One Word Photo Challenge: Melon