Posts Tagged: Photography



I learn more about God
From weeds than from roses;
Resilience springing
Through the smallest chink of hope
In the absolute of concrete….
~Phillip Pulfrey

Picture the Holidays – Days Six, Seven, Eight

Every Little Thing

Express Yourself

Reflecting on the Season

Prompts from Paper Coterie!

Where I Found Beauty This Week

“Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not.”  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Tending a Garden of Dreams

When I was a little girl I used to say that I wanted to be a dentist.   I don’t even know if I wanted to be a dentist, I think I just had a crush on my dentist.    

Because, really, I was content to write poems in my bedroom while letting lyrics swirl in my head.   Though, some of my favorite memories are those that involved country drives where I would get lost in the trees, watching them zoom past the window, varied colors and intensities; they brought dreams without my knowing.

Years later, a woman grown, I would find myself holding tightly onto the love of life, on the back of a motorcycle with a “Mean People Suck” sticker on the back of my black helmet.   Too noisy to talk.  Too noisy to hear.  I was content to visually wander into the woods as they zipped by.  Each leaf seemingly etching itself on my heart.

When I was a little girl I never believed in cities such as New Orleans or Atlanta or Seattle.   Sure I knew about them through my schooling, but knew not of their ability to feed a creative soul.

Many years after paper studies, my life would take me on literal twists and turns.   U-haul trucks and tears would lead my way, and, oh, how I’d grow during these times.    Experiences would gather at my feet, like sturdy shoes, each carrying me, making me who I am with little regret.   There shouldn’t be regrets on the path of life; for when there are regrets there is sadness which begets darkness.  I’ve come to know that it’s in the light when [you] feel warmth and love—without constraint, judgment, or worry.

Traveling and living in different and new places has supplemented my life in ways that I’m still trying to put into words.  But, there’s something to be said for getting on a Greyhound bus, an airplane, a train, or–even–in a van full of loud and mess and chaos for over fifteen hours, that makes your dreams soar to see the places where you can  Just. Be.

Which leads me to this space where I write and spill dreams.  Most of them recur after seeing something my children do, or when I hear an old song, or smell something familiar.   Locked are they in my heart vault, locked away, begging to come out and play.   With each word.  With each click.  With each foot in front of the other.  They beg to come out, as often they do.

I had no idea that while I sat on my childhood bedroom, writing in various notebooks, dreaming about days to come, that they would come so quickly.  I had no idea that the days would pass almost supersonically.   After all, I thought I wanted to be a dentist.

Dentist? Me?  As if.   More like Dreamer, and a Wife, and a Mother.   A lover of words, and–more importantly– a lover of seeing.   Hoping that no matter what I dream, no matter what I do, that I do it and Live It To The Full.  

Join me, Michelle Ensminger, and Kelly Barton in October 2011 for Dream Tending, a four-week, online workshop.

Class price is $49 and includes daily posts  (Monday through Friday) and weekly activities in multimedia art, storytelling and photography to tend your own dreams in times of transition. In addition, there will be a creative toolkit section included in each week’s lessons.  Class begins October 3.

Course Description

Life is a series of transitions, and navigating through those transitions can be tricky. Tending your most precious dreams in the midst of life’s transitions is trickier still. How do you learn to honor where you are and practice self-care, while at the same time maintaining focus on your dreams?

During this course, we’ll provide helpful tools you can use to nurture your dreams as you wade through life’s transitions. We’ll share our personal perspectives of transition and discuss ways you can keep your creative life fertile. Utilizing photography, art, and writing exercises, you’ll open yourself to the constancy and flow of dream tending  and discover that the fruit of dream tending is an enriched, meaningful, and awakened life.

My Fellow Instructors

Kelly BartonKelly Barton is a mixed media artist and graphic designer from her home base of middle Indiana. She is inspired by the inner-workings of a girl’s nutty mind and believes that growing up girl is enough inspiration for any artist. She features her artwork in her eclectic mixed media art pieces, funky notecards, spunky jewelry baubles, and fun tee-shirts available on her Etsy shop. Kelly created Kelly Barton Art +Design to remind people that we’re all connected, and because she believes we all need a bit of happy.

Kelly’s art has appeared in several national shows, including CORE: The Art and Design of the Torso (2009),the Enormous Tiny Art Show (2008), and Visions of Squam I and II (2009, 2010). Kelly’s work appeared on the cover of Underwired Magazine in March 2008, and she is a contributor to the book Inner Excavation: Exploring Your Self Through Photography, Poetry and Mixed Media (published by North Light Books).


Michelle EnsmingerMichelle Ensminger loves poetry, photography, and dates with her 8 year old son. A West Texas native, you can often find her curled up in a makeshift fort writing her way through the messiness of life. Michelle always strives to nurture her creative spirit and pursue an authentic spiritual path in the midst of motherhood and working an 8-5 job. She believes writing can heal and awaken us to life, that stillness holds great power, and in the sacred act of honoring the present moment.  She is currently taking a hiatus from blogging, but she is a regular, monthly contributor for Wish Studio. You can find more of her on Flickr and Facebook.



Friends Bring Joy

Lately I have been really blessed in the friend department. It’s been an amazing journey, and I am especially lucky because my whole family has been embraced by another family; one that is a lot like ours. They are kind, giving, understanding, fun, and loving. It’s just what we need while living in a town far away from our immediate family.

This year our friends had a wonderful exchange student from Ukraine. He has become a good friend to all of my children. So-much-so that in the past week my eldest son has probably been at their house more than he’s been at ours. I only wish they would have become friends sooner than this late spring/early summer. It doesn’t matter, though, because they are friends now. They’ll probably be friends forever, too. Thanks to the internet, of course.

I wanted to do something special for our friends and their “son”. Yesterday morning I took some photos of them, so that they could have some really nice framed prints. It took all of a half and hour, and I was so happy to do it for them.

Giving to the people you love is tremendously fulfilling.
Giving friendship to one another is invaluable.
Giving love to your friends brings joy.


I’d like to hear about your moment of joy! Share your story and upload a photo (optional), and in return Shutterfly will gift you $5 off your next photo book to commemorate life’s joyous moments, and you”ll be entered for a chance to win a $200 Shutterfly Gift card.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Shutterfly.   The opinions and text are all mine.  Offer valid for $5 off one photo book order and valid for one-time redemption per member. Taxes, shipping and handling will apply.  BlogFrog hosted gift card contest live from June 17th to July 14th.  A winner will be randomly chosen and announced on July 18th. All participants remain the copyright holder of their photos.

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