Tag: photography in Athens Pennsylvania

January was a month of blah or simply: ‘Here is my February 10 on 10’

Cold, clouds and more cold and clouds. That was what our January in Pennsylvania was all about and that meant we spent most of it inside, wishing it was sunny and warm and we were outside. We did break out of the house a couple of times, bundled up, to try our best to be lovers of all things cold. We usually lasted about twenty minutes each excursion before we were back inside, huddled under blankets, sipping tea, reading books and watching our new addiction, the Canadian sitcom “Corner Gas”, which we found on Amazon. During the week-long artic freeze we didn’t leave the house at all, other than my husband who had to go to work, which luckily isn’t too far from our house.

Our cabin fever was so bad I was a little concerned my daughter might never change out of the footed pajamas her grandparents gave her for Christmas.

Our cold adventures included playing outside (20 minutes at a time), attending science classes for the local homeschooling group (learning about trees), a trip to Ithaca, NY, (cold, so not much exploring, I’m afraid) and a hike with my dad to his pond to see if it was frozen enough for us to walk on it (spoiler alert: it wasn’t).

How about you? What did you do in January and so far in February? Let me know in the comments or link to your post where you shared.

If you want to see the rest of the blogs in this 10 on 10 blog circle, find the link at the conclusion of this post.

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DSC_3068Follow our circle around by clicking over to Anna Hurley’s blog.

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When you slowly let go of what everyone thinks of you

000001_DSC_5255When I saw the notification on my smartphone screen and read the first few words I knew the message wasn’t going to be a fun one to read. I dreaded opening that message and maybe I should have ignored it, but instead I decided to bite the bullet and read a scolding I had expected to come in the form of a phone call instead.

The words on the page were a surprise to me, full of accusations I hadn’t expected.  In the past an encounter like this would have sent me spiraling into a deep depression and a long period of self doubt. The fact I cried uncontrollably for two hours, versus four, and only flew off into a rage-induced rant twice after the incident is something I count as progress, even if others wouldn’t.

And the fact I never even answered the person, but instead deleted the message and blocked them from my social media so I could regroup and cool down? That’s a complete about turn from my reactions of the past.

There I was, reading something written to me by someone who was hurt and had misunderstood, and I found my emotions mixed. My first reaction was the familiar anger that sets in when I feel as if I am being attacked. Then I felt sad and like I had done something wrong. I wanted to gush out an admission of my guilt, like I usually do, even though I knew at least one thing they were upset by was a complete misunderstanding.

This time, though, the anger, depression and guilt was soon replaced with a sense of unexpected calm and a feeling that what was said wasn’t going to change my mind about the decision made.While I once would doubt a decision, or even change it, based on criticism from someone, this time I didn’t let my resolve waiver. I knew what we had done was in the best interest of our family and I wasn’t going to let that decision be shaken by what someone else thought of me.

It isn’t that I am unwilling to admit my wrong in a situation, but I’ve spent far too much of my life believing I need to change who I am, or the decisions I’ve made, based on the opinions of someone else.

It’s definitely hard when we feel the judgments of others and know that somewhere out in the universe is someone who isn’t a fan of us. But in reality it doesn’t matter if other humans aren’t our fans. We all know we aren’t perfect and that the only opinion that  really matters is the opinion of The One who created us.

DSC_8419To be able to see progress within ourselves is so satisfying, even when we know we have so much more to learn and so many more positive changes to make. Most of us are never satisfied with who we are. We often think we’ll never improve, or bid farewell to some of our more annoying character flaws.

We won’t change or improve overnight. God knows this. He only wants us to take steps, small ones even, to become more like Him.

“Becoming like Christ is a long, slow process of growth,” pastor and author Rick Warren says. “Spiritual maturity is neither instant nor automatic; it is a gradual, progressive development that will take the rest of your life.”

Paul wrote often about the process of becoming like Christ, knowing that we will stumble and fall, just at the disciples did, even as they walked with Christ on Earth.

Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead.

Philippians 3:13-14

We often look ahead at how far we have to go in our journey, but we rarely look back and see how far we’ve come. While we don’t want to dwell on the past, it doesn’t hurt to recognize the progress we have made along our journey.

Maybe we aren’t where we want to be, but if we are making small steps toward improvement, then we should acknowledge the progress, no matter how small.000000_DSC_6000

 

10 on 10 for March. Also known as my favorite photos from February and March so far

I am so ready for spring that my brain has literally gone into a sort of hibernation that involves denial that it is still winter and we will still be getting snow and ice and cold days that require large, puffy winter coats and knitted hats. If someone says “did you know we are getting snow tomorrow?” I look at them like a deer standing in the middle of the road, entranced by headlights. 

I’ve fallen deep into researching my family on ancestry.com so that has helped to distract me from the fact it’s still winter, but it’s put a bit of a halt in my photography, which is why this month is simply a collection of some of my favorite photos from February and the beginning of March. Included is a couple of shots from my farm project. 

This post is part of a monthly blog circle where we feature ten photos from a day or simply the previous month. ]To follow the circle scroll to the end of the post for the next link.

 

To continue the circle visit Anna Hurley and check out her beautiful photos!

I am going to be a writer today or what is really like to be a writer.

I am going to be a writer today.

I am going to write.

I am going to make things happen.

I am going to – wait for my computer to install updates for 15 minutes. 

I am going to get breakfast. 

I am going to notice the living room is a mess.

I am going to pick up the living room. I am going to sit with the toddler because she wants to cuddle. 

I am going to make tea for the boy because he is sick today. 

I am going to make tea for myself because the boy is sick today.

I am going to feed the cat, who keeps wrapping her paws around my ankles and biting my toes, apparently trying to knock me to the ground so she can kill me and eat me.

 Oh! Computer is updated!

I am going to write. 

I am going to be a writer today. 

I am going to write. 

I am going to make things happen. 

And then I am going to keyword my stock photos to get them up for sale. All 300 of them. With 50 keywords each. 

Oh yes, I am.

And then I am going to start drafts for a weeks worth of blog posts and resize all the images I want to use for each post.  

Yep.

Here I go.

I am going to –

wait for the computer to restart and install more updates. 

I am going to bounce my forehead off this desk seven times because I once read seven is the number of God and only God can keep me from throwing this computer into the street in front of one of those gigantic hillbilly pick up trucks that rumble by every half hour.