Thursday, December 1, 2011

People, especially friends deserve my quality time

A good friend of mine reminded me that we've spent very little time together this entire year. She's right, and it's a shame I've not managed to spend more quality time with one of my best friends.

I'm finding as I get older, more and more responsibilites are tacked on to my 'need to do' list which pushes other things to the bottom of the list.  I need to re-evaluate my priorities.  Yes, some days are more hectic than other days, but still what's important should take presidence no matter what.

 My friend reminded me about what's most important, and above all, those are friends and family.

Families, we're born into,  but it's our friends whom we choose.  Friends are our chosen families.

Real friendship is golden. One day, when I look back on my life, actually, I should do that every day, on what I've accomplished, and what will be important to me is how I shared and conducted my life to make someone else's life better.  And, the best way I can do that is do something that makes the most positive impact. And that would be to share with my friend's my love of Jesus.  Jesus is my very, best friend.  Jesus is the very best friend anyone can have. With him, your eternal future is secure in heaven. What could be more desired than that, and make more impact than that?

Good friends make life better. I want all my friends to have the best, and Jesus is the way to make their life better now and forever.  Jesus has made it possible for anyone who accepts him by faith into their heart and be their Lord, to be reconciled with God. Their sins will be forgiven because the sacrifice of Jesus upon the cross settled the debt owed that sin required to be paid.  Sin separates us all from a holy, and righteous God.  Sin must be dealt with and purged in order to have a place in heaven. Through Jesus, anyone, spiritually, can receive salvation and gain 'right standing' with God.  I thank God and His Son, my Lord, for extending to me, and to everyone this free gift of salvation.  I want to see all my friends and family in heaven one day.  Friends forever, with Jesus. That would be wonderful!

Love. It all makes sense. What matters the most is loving our friends and family enough to tell them about the love that was demonstrated with outstretched arms to all people by Jesus. Jesus is that friend who died so anyone accepting Him would live. That's an act of love to the highest degree. Love is a verb. I love my friends so I must tell them about Jesus. I don't want a single one to not know of the ultimate example of love God sent from heaven, so one day we, our spirits, can be enjoying heaven, forever.

Sharing the love of Jesus is my passion. I want to have a positive effect upon my friends and everyone I come in contact with.

The video below is an example of a gentleman named Dr. Johnny Long, a band director at Troy University in Troy, Alabama. His former students are proof of what can happen when you share your passion with others. The effects can be long lasting upon other people, then, that passion takes hold and gets passed along, affecting other people,  and it continues.  Johnny Long's legacy continues.  I want my legacy and passion to be sharing the Lord so each can make their choice to accept the gift of God for their salvation, and, the Good News gets passed on and on.  God wants all to make their choice for the Lord.  Selfishly, I do too.

Time without end in heaven with friends, who mean so much to me, will be so wonderful.






I'm going to make the time to spend with my friends, and during that time share Jesus with them. Forever is at stake, and I don't want to miss a single friend in heaven.

Every person deserves to know about the 'Good News' of Jesus. I'm thinking that's the very best quality time I can spend with my friends or anyone.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Her repertoire grows!

Last year I wrote on Bonnie Ulm Holland, a friend of mine, whom I find so interesting and talented.  She keeps presenting me with what I find very interesting subjects I'm compelled to write on.  Last October, I wrote about her newest creative project, Elite Elixir, and carried out my own experiment of this item, adding to what I'm calling her repertoire, which by the way already consists of her botanical artistry, her cooking mastery,  and two cook books, one of which is an award winner.  And by the way, personally I think her botanical compositions are far more exquisite than any other pressed flower art I have seen any where, and I think she continually improves upon her artistry.  Believe me, I do look around checking if anyone out there is putting out better work with pressed flowers.  You really do need to see some of her pieces for yourself to appreciate the detail. I don't know how she does it, but some compositions appear three-dimensional to me. The framed compositions are ready for displaying brilliantly preserved, pressed flowers from any special occasion, which make for a lasting memory- truly something that will be treasured for a long time. And, word as spread so she even has clients internationally.  Just recently I just heard Bonnie's been invited to display her botanical art on an entire wall at Rosemont Gardens, a well-known establishment in Montgomery, Alabama. What an honor to her and treat for those who are going to be awe struck when they see how amazingly attractive her botanical compositions truly are.

Below are two recently framed pieces by Bonnie. View close-up the spectacular colors and detail. Her proprietary technique lends to the most splendidly, preserved pressed flowers. These finished products are big, gorgeous, and fit to proudly display on the wall of any home or art museum.

Pressed flowers- such vivid colors

I think Bonnie is the best botanical artist.



Alas, there is even a newer addition to her repertoire. Bonnie has written the manuscript to her book, Rural Home, Recollections and Reflections.  Below are photos of the loose manuscript pages, and photos of the manuscript in a binder.  Bonnie, et all, are anxiously waiting to hear from a publisher the manuscript has been submitted to. 

Rural Home manuscript next to botanical art

Chapters of Rural Home waiting to be compiled

The finished, bound Rural Home manuscript, was submitted to a local publisher this month. I'm not exaggerating, honestly, I think if anyone starts reading Rural Home, they won't want to set it down because page after page they will become more immersed and engaged in the stories of her life. It reminds me of two novels, Fried Green Tomatoes/Whistle Stop Cafe, and Forrest Gump, in that so many things happen to the main character. I believe Rural Home has all the makings of a classic novel and movie.  And, I'm personally hoping this will be the first of many books written by Bonnie. 

Front cover

 
 Back cover





So, we will soon be adding- 'best-selling author' to Bonnie's growing list of accomplishments. Hats off to her. She deserves it.

You might enjoy viewing the Nature's Notables website.


Below is the card I saw in a downtown Montgomery art store back in early 1999. I hadn't yet met or heard of Bonnie Holland. I thought this card was so simple, but so beautiful. I had to have it for myself. I've had it displayed on a shelf in my bathroom ever since. To me it brings a smile to my face. Then, later that year I meet Bonnie when she came to my practice and we quickly become friends. She will tell you how I helped her at a stressful time in her life with the therapies I provided to her, including introducing her to therapeutic-grade essential oils. But I say she equally has helped me countless times with her friendship, sound advice and her genuine concern the many, many times I needed relationship and business advice.  Not to mention the sheer pleasure of being invited to eat at her table, which is equivalent to dining in a fine 5-star restaurant.  Need I say this is a special card made by a treasured friend.

Salvia, simply preserved, by Bonnie Holland, 1999

P.S. You may contact Bonnie (at Nature's Notables), then click 'Contact Info' so you can contact her that you wish to be informed when her book, Rural Home, comes out. (I have no doubt whatsoever it will be a successful book, because everything she touches turns out successfully). I haven't asked, but knowing her, I can see her autographing her first issued books. So, go ahead and ask to be contacted as soon as her book is ready for distribution .

And, please share this posting with your friends/family on Facebook and Twitter.   Until next time, have a lovely, blessed day!






Monday, November 7, 2011

Victorian Spa & Wellness Center- very impressive

I booked myself a well-deserved facial treatment at the Victorian Spa & Wellness Center in Troy. I scheduled my appointment without knowing anything about this spa. I prefer experiencing new places without prior expectations which was the same way I joined the Marine Corps back in the 70s.  I remember walking into the Marine Corps recruiting office and I let it be known to the fine Marine in his crisp, sharp Blues uniform that I was ready to sign up right then.  Today, I was 'game' to have my facial at the Victorian Spa & Wellness Center, and I can honestly say I was very satisfied, delighted, and impressed with my visit from beginning to end.

The entrance


First of all, the entrance door is safely unlocked by a staff member when the outside ringer is sounded. That's nice- no unwanted surprises or intrusions to anyone inside trying to relax.  Once inside, there's a retail area and a natural supplements area. Everything looked to be in good taste, but since I arrived just in time for my appointment time, I had no time to browse in these very inviting areas. I'll be sure to arrive earlier next time. The friendly receptionist was at the front desk and I saw facial and beauty literature and products I will have to check out later.
Retail &wellness area-complete with loose teas & supplements

My first visit...
I was greeted and taken through another secure door, once again giving me that secure  feeling, then down a short hallway to a room I privately changed from my street clothes and into a spa wrap and a thick robe and slippers. I stored all my personal belongs in a cubical cabinet which I locked and kept the key in my robe pocket.  Then, I was escorted to a large  "quiet room".  Let me tell you, this is one of those rooms you want to stay in. This is where I thought this is really nice to actually be in Troy, Alabama. Three huge, white lounge chairs lined one wall. Very nice. I was told I could make myself comfortable, and try any of the various coffees, teas, and finger foods that were set out to choose from.  A virtual fireplace on another wall caught my attention, as well as a thick, white rug on the floor in front of it.  Hanging art work with what looked to be water streaming down also added to the room's peaceful ambiance. I glanced at some literature and products on display shelves and thought how nice everything looked.  The lighting by floor lamps wasn't glaring, so overall this made for a warm, comforting room to be in.  I thought if libraries, supposedly 'quiet places' were furnished in any manner similar to this 'quiet room', I promise more people would be flocking into libraries. I know, I used to live in a library practically every weekend during my college years.

                         


Relax in the "quiet room"

Meeting the esthetician ...
This was my first time to the Victorian Spa & Wellness Center, so I completed forms answering questions on my general health, any past and present skin problems, and such. Then Tory, owner and licensed esthetician entered, introduced herself, and took me to one of her treatment rooms.  The treatment room was absolutely gorgeously furnished.  Tory instructed me to disrobe and lay on my back on the table between the sheets.  I think I saw a blanket on the table, but I didn't need it.  The table is well worth mentioning because it was curved, not a flat table. This curved table was very comfortable for me while on my back with lower my legs slightly elevated. I was impressed. And, the table was warmed perfectly the entire time. I believe the temperature at my feet might have been slightly warmer than the rest of my body. All in all, I was neither too hot, nor too cold, but just right. So far, I felt like I'd already been treated, and I hadn't even had the facial yet.

The facial room- see the curved table I liked so much?

My HydraFacial treatment....
I chose the facial treatment I thought fit my skin's needs, called the" HydraFacial".  And let me tell you, it made my face, my skin, my mind, all of me- feel as though I was having a delightful experience- one which I should be treating myself to on a regular basis. I would be a happier person if I had this to look forward to every few months or so. I was having a little sinus congestion, but it cleared up quickly once my face was misted with warm steam. Then my face was cleansed. Then suctioning, which I really liked- I think it lifts dead skin cells and impurities out of my pores. Then, Tory massaged my face like I've never had it massaged before. 'Nice' just isn't descriptive enough to describe how having your face massaged feels. I'm sure the facial products she used had something to do with it also. All I can say is, the face massage Tory gave is one of those things mere words can't convey, and you wouldn't believe how wonderful it is until you have one yourself. It's a combined feeling of peace, wellness, bliss, pleasure, pampering, and warmth that perforates throughout your being.  Then, warm towels were ever so strategically placed over my upper chest, neck and face. The feeling was ahhhhh!  I know for a fact that I dozed a few times, even though I wanted not to.  Next, Tory did some extractions. This was not at all painful.  Then, more warm towels. Tory worked on my face the entire hour. At the conclusion of my facial, she instructed me to slowly get up and off the table.  I felt as if I'd been asleep for half the night and my face felt like baby's skin. My face felt deeply moisturized and smooth deep down, and not just on the surface. It felt dewy without being shiny or irritated or red. Facials I've had in the past would require a day for my face to recuperate and settle down from the treatment. This HydraFacial allowed me to go out in public right away. My skin looked terrific. I was very impressed.

After my facial, I went back to the 'quiet room'. I was the only one in there so I made myself comfortable and thought I so glad Vicky and Tory, Mother and daughter, chose to open such a classy business in Troy and not in Montgomery, Birmingham, Auburn or Dothan. I'm sure they considered opening in a larger town, and it must have been special consideration that chose Troy, a smaller city, to open their Victorian Spa & Wellness Center. Let people in larger cities to learn about of this jewel of a place- and let them drive here.  Then, while I was changing back into my clothes, my thoughts were I must write about my first Victorian Spa visit. This has been such a pleasant treat for me from the friendly, courteous, and cordial staff, to the atmosphere and the excellent service. It could not have been any better. I asked for a tour and found every room to be more impressive than the room before. There is a manicure room, a pedicure room, and two other rooms in addition to the chair at the end of one hall for applying make-up and ear piercings.  Even the restrooms were charmingly decorated and furnished, as I noted attention to detail there as well, like a basket of female essentials and toiletries.

                                         
The pedicure room- see the water fountain in the corner?
Chair and vanity for make-up application and ear piercing

Manicure room
Just one of the restrooms-this one also has a shower
My concluding observations.....
My photos don't do justice showing the interior rooms. All the little details made it special, from the lighting, water fountains, displays...to the thick bath robe and storage locking cubicles. I was very impressed from the front desk to the restrooms and everything in-between. As a past business owner, I know an awful lot of planning and hard work went into making the Victorian Spa & Wellness Center the fine establishment I have now experienced it to be. I have no doubt this business, providing skilled professional services in a peaceful atmosphere will grow and do very well.

I'm also impressed with the menu of services describing various facials, manicures, pedicures, acne treatments, even a gentleman's facial.  Services range from $28 to $145 depending on the service and how long it lasts.  Other services offered are infrared sauna, turbosonic, foot detox, body massage, wraps and scrubs. These services range from $35 to $118, again depending on the service and time, which could last from 30 minutes up to 90 minutes. I would surely be sound asleep.

I can tell you I am stashing a few dollars every week into my "Spa" envelope for my next anticipated appointment. And, I'm so glad I don't have to travel further than Troy.

                                                              ********

     The Spa is easy to locate near Walker's Western Wear off Hwy 231 North.

                   Victorian Spa & Wellness Center
          107 Pecan Street in Troy, Alabama   36081
                    334-566-1287    by appointment
                      their website will be up soon.


Bonus-The turbosonic and the infrared sauna are two services worth investigating in the wellness room. The first four times are free to try them and then you can book a series. Call for more info. I'm going to blog later about my experiences with these services, so check back later about my experiences. By now, you know I'm game.

Infrared sauna (you sit in it) & the turbosonic (you stand on it) 





By the way, initially I wanted to join the Air Force to be an air traffic controller. My Dad worked in the 70's in Boulder, Colorado at an Air Traffic Control Center which kept track of all air traffic over the western United States. I was so impressed with the room with colorful scopes the air traffic controllers sat viewing and tracking air traffic. It was too cool.  I decided that's what I would like to do someday. And did pursue that dream, for some unknown reason, I was turned down after going completing a special military entrance physical for air traffic controllers. The final verdict was I wasn't tall enough. That hurt.  So, I decided I'd join the Marine Corps since I couldn't help but notice the Marines in their uniforms every time I went to the recruiting center. I decided I'd join 'open contract', meaning I'd fill whatever occupation the Corps needed me in. I ended up working on electrical systems of A4M jets. I worked on those jets alright- all over the cockpit, I simulated flight in them, I crawled around almost every inch of those jets to pull out and replaced components. There were miles of electrical wire throughout making every instrument and component function. I could always tell an A4M Skyhawk (my squadron had VL on the tail) just by their sound overhead and every time I thought I had just worked on that jet and now it's in the air flying a mission.  No, none crashed because of me. So, I wasn't an air traffic controller, but instead I got to be up close and personal with aircraft, pilots and others all working to keep A4M's maintained and safe for flight missions.  I was 'game' to go in 'open contract' into the service and I had an interesting run and great four year experience serving my country in the Marine Corps. Glad I was too short.

This short, female, ex-Marine knows a fantastic facial when she gets one.                            GO GET YOURS!

Be sure to visit my other blog. I welcome you to leave your comments below anytime.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Shrimp, sea beans and kumquats

My recent weekend with friends to Gulf Shores and Fort Morgan this month included eating shrimp, being introduced to sea beans and kumquat pie. It was a beautiful day to be at the National Shrimp Festival, and the smell in the air on the Gulf Coast made it impossible to not want to try something I hadn't had before. With all the shrimp, I couldn't help but think what was the name of Forrest Gumps' shrimp boat?  (The answer is below).

There were plenty of vendors cooking shrimp and other sea food fixins'- you could have shrimp on a stick or in a plate with lobster, gator, crab, oysters, coconut, onion rings, and the list went on and on.  Below you can view a display of enticing food behind screens at one of the busy food vendors and menus on overhead signs. I managed to snap these photos when I wasn't eating my fill.





Sea beans, also known as 'drift seed' or 'drift fruit' are not edible,  and interestingly, these beans are from trees and had probably floated hundreds, if not thousands of miles riding ocean currents before washing up on the shore of Fort Morgan, located just a few miles from Gulf Shores.

Below is the sea bean collection my friend proudly showed she had found while combing the beach.  You can see a couple 'sea beans' have been made to wear as a necklace.








 I've walked on a few beaches at San Francisco, Daytona Beach, Siesta Key Beach at Sarasota, Florida, and Atlantic Beach and Emerald Isle in North Carolina looking for seashells, sea glass, drift wood, or anything that looked interesting. I don't remember seeing anything looking like 'sea beans', nor had I ever same upon any large, whole sea shells, but plenty smaller ones. Other treasures like a lost diamond or gold ring, or maybe even a message in a bottle, or some other treasure brought in by the tide and left in the wrack,  I was never fortunate to find, I'm sure others are luckier in their treasure hunting on the beach,  but not me.  This weekend was the first I'd heard about sea beans or even saw sea bean jewelry or heard there are collectors and traders and actual sea bean conventions. Imagine that!   I've also discovered that there are also edible 'sea beans' which I am going to be looking in the produce idle for this green 'veggie' the next time I grocery shop. I have to try some- might be crunchy in a green salad.


And then, there was kumquat refrigerator pie for dessert. My first and certainly not my last. I think it's up there with key lime pie for a light, warm weather to cool you off dessert.  Aside from getting the seeds out to puree the cute, little kumquats, it was a cinch to make. Five ingredients- pie shell, kumquats, lemon juice, condensed milk and cool whip.   I found the recipe online for this kumquat refrigerator pie.

I never would have imagined kumquats make such a delightful pie. Delicious. See what a nice pie I had below.



All in all, I think it was a super weekend! Any weekend around friends and food is good!


Answer- Forrest Gump named the boat 'Jenny'.
Then later, he had a fleet of Bubba Gump Shrimp Company shrimp boats.








Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Chaz, not everything is changeable

In the news recently is Chaz Bono, formerly Chastity Bono, the used-to-be-daughter-but-now-son born of Sonny Bono, now deceased, and his wife at the time, Cher.  I remember cute, little Chastity on TV back in the 70s, at the end of her parents' hour long comedy show being held in Sonny's arms. They made a cute family standing together being viewed by millions every week.  Chastity really was an adorable little girl. In all probability she could've grown to be a very attractive woman,  but rather today she/he chose the path to be altered to the opposite gender, and now looks like a heavy-set male with soft, feminine facial features and womanly hands.
 
Here's an interview with Chasity/Chaz about transgender change


I was thinking.........

Chaz can't change her bone structure , but the fat and soft tissues around bone can change with hormones, exercise, and weight loss or gain.  Compare the bone structure of a man's to a woman's, For instance, compare pelvic bones. Compare the rib cage and torso, the neck, the head, feet, and facial structures underneath soft tissues give either soft female and male features and characteristics.  All different.  Mind you sometimes the differences can be very subtle, but for the most part, if you study forensics or anatomy, those differences help determine the gender of a body.  Chaz wants to be a male, but she/he can't change everything about her/his body and be a real male.


      See the differences of a man's vs woman's hand?

Photo credit: taliesin from morguefile.com

 
Hormones do play a very important role in gender and sex of the human body.  For some time, Chaz has medically been injected with more male hormones to overpower the female hormones in her/his body giving the obvious, male physical  characteristics like a deepened voice, bulky muscle mass and male hair growth patterns.  But you can't ever change the fact that Chaz was a normal healthy, female first, with chromosomes of a female. That can't be undone or forgotten or changed.  Chaz will have to continually take hormones to keep displaying male physical characteristics.


 I was thinking if this might be confusing to her/his body and brain?  Only Chaz knows or will know.


No matter what the brain thinks it wants, however you were formed in uteri, is the 'original' material you will always have to deal with and consider. That is a fact that can't be overlooked, erased or ignored.  Mankind with just enough knowledge to deviate some degree away from the 'original' and try to act like God, can never make a new 'original'.  Chastity was female when she was born, and as long as she/he is occupying that body, she/he is locked into what God created her as in uteri. and that fact stands no matter how many hormones or operations she undergoes.  She/he has undergone drastic physical changes, but Chaz will never in her/his lifetime experience being a complete male.  She/he can only be less feminine, but never a full man.


The photo below shows typical male and female physical characteristics- a male has a stronger angled jaw and brow bones, heavier, thicker facial hair, a longer torso, larger ears ,an Adam's apple, and a narrower pelvis.  A female typically has softer facial features,  a shorter torso, and a wider set pelvic bones.


Photo credit: azrikhan from morguefile.com


I wonder what sort of medical challenges Chaz, or anyone who's undergone gender-switching, will have to contend with in the future?


God has the title 'Creator' all to Himself. He alone makes the original and no one can alter that fact.



I am not making any statements against any one's personal wishes. I wish the original Chastity, altered to be Chaz, the best.


Here is more interesting content can read about on sex reassignment/transgender change.








Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Products and people- not the same they used to be

Have you noticed cereal boxes, and dog food bags are either thinner or smaller than they used to be? I've also noticed laundry detergent comes in smaller boxes and canned food is in slightly smaller cans. Even aerosol cans are smaller in diameter.  Manufacturers have made ever-so-slightly packaging changes in hopes consumers wouldn't notice the downsizing.  Products don't hold up as long neither. I can't find a can opener that will last longer than 6 months before it needs to be replaced.  I had bought my Mom a name brand hand-held mixer, thinking surely it would last a number of years, but just a couple months passed and she was telling me the beaters kept falling out.  In my kitchen, I'm still toasting my bread using an old vintage toaster I remember buying from an antique shop back in the late 70s during my Marine Corps days stationed in North Carolina. It's got one of those round, black electrical cords and ticks when it's toasting, but it works just as good as the first time I toasted in it. Things are not the same. My latest vehicle doesn't have a metal body all around. Some of the body panels are fiberglass. Wow! That's very comforting knowing I'm protected with fiberglass against an oncoming logging truck.  Why use flimsier, or inferior, lesser quality materials to  make products? They're just not going to hold up compared to products that were made with sturdier material.


                           My trusty old toaster is still toasting my bread over 30 years

But the most change I've noticed is the values, moral, and attitudes of people. I shake my head and I'm sure many other people my age or older have noticed it also. The younger generations are not carrying forward many ideas us older folk hold sacred. The younger generations march to a different drum beat or something. And that something is not very comforting or what I see to be good, solid, values and morals.  

The following is part of an email on senior citizens I received.


Upon reflection, we would like to point out that it was NOT the senior citizens who took:

The
 melody out of music,
The
 pride out of appearance,
The
 courtesy out of driving,
The
 romance out of love,
The
 commitment out of marriage,
The
 responsibility out of parenthood,
The
 togetherness out of the family,
The
 learning out of education,
The
 service out of patriotism,
The
 Golden Rule from rulers,
The
 nativity scene out of cities,
The
 civility out of behavior,
The
 refinement out of language,
The
 dedication out of employment,
The
 prudence out of spending,
The
 ambition out of achievement or
God
out of government and school.
And we certainly are NOT  the ones who eliminated patience and tolerance from personal relationships and interactions with others!!

And, we do understand the meaning of patriotism, and remember those who have fought and died for our country.
 
Just look at the Seniors with tears in their eyes and pride in their hearts as they stand
 at attention with their hand over their hearts!

YES, I'M A SENIOR CITIZEN!

 ------------------------------------------------End of email.



I'm sure I'm not the only one thinking,"what's happened?"  Good, solid, sturdy, things are now made flimsy, and the strong fortitude, backbone, commitment and convictions people used to posses and exhibit have become flimsy as well. This is becoming a 'wimpy world'

What do you think about this?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Relaxing in fresh water

My last posting was on Leisure Diving and so I had a longing to get in some water myself. So a friend and I took a short trip to Morrison Springs in Walton County, Florida. It's a natural fresh water spring that is beautiful. It's cool water is too cool for alligator or snakes, so it makes for some nice time in the water in a natural setting without fear of any unwanted reptiles hanging around.

Here are some photos I snapped while there. Of course scuba divers were diving down into the caves of the springs. I think that would be fun, too,  but I can't scuba dive. Regardless, it was enjoyable getting wet and cooled down in the cool, fresh, clear, spring water. The opening to the spring was located a few feet to the left of the floating deck. If you can see the water is slightly darker a few feet to the left of the deck in the second picture below. I heard it went down 80 feet. Surrounded by cypress trees, there was lots of sun, splashing, kayaks, canoes, swimming and paddle boarding, but no leisure diving going on, doggone it!




Hope you're having a nice time relaxin somewhere.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

I like this diving!

I don't know how I found this site but I love it. LeisureDive.com.   
What I find so cool is the 'leisurely look' while you're jumping into a pool or something soft. I was thinking, could I look cool jumping into a pool? And also important is the photographer has to snap the picture at just the right moment and it can't be blurred.

 I was thinking what I could do for my leisure dive shot.... I came up with a few ideas.

1. Have arms outstretched as if yawning with my eyes closed.
2. Dive off backwards with my arms behind my head and my legs crossed.
3. Have my dog jump first then me dive in afterwards like I'm trying to catch his leash.
4. Casting a fishing line while diving and looking leisurely.

I wish I could come up with more ideas.  How about you?  Have any ideas for a leisure dive ?


This is my old way to dive. I think leisure diving is much more classy and creative, don't you?

Diving in the old fashion way

Photo credit: d3designs from morguefile.com

Sunday, July 17, 2011

The gentle, country plumber

Have you ever had to call upon the services of a plumber? Have you ever had to call twice in one week? I recently had and the experience turned out to be a very pleasant one in the end.

I needed a bathroom toilet repaired as soon as possible as it had been leaking apparently for some time without my knowledge and caused floor damage hidden under the carpeting.  I called a recommended plumber who lived not too far from me in the country. But I was so sleepy and tired that I couldn't stay awake while the plumber was in the bathroom doing his repairs.

Bathrooms can have slow leaks and mess up your flooring

Photo credit: jade from morguefile.com

When I woke up, the plumber was gone. He left without getting paid and I couldn't find where he'd left an invoice.  I called his phone number and his wife answered and said he knew that I was asleep, so he didn't wake me.  Wow!  Now that would have never happened if I lived in the city. I called him again that week because I thought the toilet was leaking again. He came out again and checked, but it was dry and he offered to do the work to replace some of my flooring as well. What good skills to have. I lucked up on a nice, country plumber.

In the country I find there's extended and exercised a little more trust between people than in the city.  I like that. I did drive over and paid him the next week plus a tip for being so thoughtful, along with a jar of homemade jelly to his wife. 

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

I saw mermaids in Florida


 I finally got to visit a place in Florida I've been wanting to visit for some time.  It's away from the crowds of Disney World, where you can enjoy Florida the way it used to be in a simpler, older, slower, more natural setting.  I visited Weeki Wachee, the home of the world famous mermaids in Spring Hill, Florida about an hour North of Tampa.  The mermaids were so amazing and  graceful swimming underwater.  It was all I thought it to be.  Just thinking about the year of mermaid training in order to be beautiful Weeki Wachee mermaids to breathe and swim like a graceful mermaid in a cool natural spring setting surrounded by turtles or fish or manatee in the spring.  During the show, held the mermaid theatre, the mermaids open their mouths to sing, and even eat and drink a coke underwater.  I don't know about you, when I'm underwater, I gotta keep my mouth shut or I'm gonna get waterlogged and sink. But not mermaids.  I'm still wondering how can anyone eat and drink while underwater?  To me, see that was an absolutely amazing feat on top of the unique water show. 

 If you want to see something different in a natural spring water setting, visit the mermaids yourself. Here are a few photos I took. Here is the website to Florida State Parks. - click on the Weeki Wachee Springs Park.  Personally, it was well worth the trip and quite unique to see.  Enjoy.
 

Let me tell you while watching this underwater show in person the colors underwater were very bright and vivid. My camera photos didn't do justice to the underwater colors of the mermaid's costumes nor their flowing hair. They were lovely tail-finned underwater ballerinas and the water was absolutely crystal clear.  

  View this video, Part 1 of 6 one of the mermaid shows at Weeki Wachee.





My next adventure is to lazily float down the Suwannee River in Florida along the Suwannee Wilderness River Trail in a houseboat.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Virginity

Today's the day of the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton in England.  Did you know Kate is supposed to be a virgin in order to marry William?  My guess is in order to not have any surprises about the bloodline and parents of any children born of Kate, it's necessary she be a virgin.  I don't know of any medical tests to prove virginity, but maybe there is an examination to prove a woman's hymen hasn't been broken. If anyone knows, please leave a comment.  And by the way, sex involves more than intercourse. So, I was just thinking and wondering about virginity.

A royal prince for a lovely princess
Photo credit: jdurham from morguefile.com

The aroma of love is in the air

Photo credit: darnok from morguefile.com

Protecting and guarding your virginity status until marriage in today's culture is not important as it was a few short decades ago.  Virginity used to be something a young woman held onto proudly until her wedding day, reserving her wedding bed as sacred and shared only with her husband. I would think this would make any man proud to know he was his wife's one and only. But now days, from both sides, being virgins is not expected, spoken of, nor barely considered.  What's changed over the past couple decades?  I will tell you what I think has changed.  Marriage isn't taken as seriously as it once was, and sex has become a recreation rather than being a sacred act of sharing your body with your spouse.  I also think fast times, easy travel, the internet, cellphones, movies, living together, has all precipitated us in moving away from "until death do us part" and these are just a few things which have influenced changes in importance and focus away from being a virgin. Today, it's sex without long term commitment. When you get the urge, you do it without any second thought.  If the sexual act produces a pregnancy, then that unwanted pregnancy can easily be terminated without any emotional attachment. End that life. Virginity is dying, it doesn't matter any more about chastity or saving something meant to be spectacularly special between two people for a lifetime. Just a few decades ago, that was the norm, but today it's practically history, and to know someone with their virginity in tact until marriage is a rare occurrence and rare find. For the class of a few who choose to wait in keeping their virginity until marriage, I have to say is a very .  Still, royal families regard virginity as an important mandatory for marriage, or for this one, and the bloodline of the future king or queen of England.  I hope the young royal newlyweds have a beautiful, sweet life together as husband and wife and have the satisfying pleasure knowing they waited each for the other.

Here's a link to 11 benefits to wait to have sex until after you're married. I especially like the numbers 7 through 11 the most.  

The dance of life- two people coming together as one

Photo credit: earl53 from morguefile.com

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Lady Banks and blooms

Lady Banks
It's Spring time around here, and if I overlook the pollen that's giving me fits, it's so colorful viewing the array of flowering bushes and trees. Here are some photos I've taken.

 Wisteria

Flowering Crab Tree


Knockout roses

There are many more blooms coloring the landscape like azaleas, tulip trees, and much more, but I just wanted to share these colorful photos I took while out and about.  Spring has surely sprung. So beautiful! I thank God for His seasons of robust and delightful blooms and aromas.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Fat Girl

To everyone else on earth, it was another day.  But yesterday was the day Fat Girl was put to rest. I had to make the decision to end her misery. It was not an easy decision. I remember the day Fat Girl came on the scene. She came into the world rounder and fatter than any newly born pot belly pig I'd seen, so it was a no-brainer her name had to be Fat Girl.  She was round and quite the good, close daughter to her mother, Elgie.  She learned very well the motherly traits and had a litter of her own. She was strong, and could stand her ground. She could fight the male pigs if they got in her way. They learned not to mess with her.  She was docile and quiet and loved to eat like any healthy pig.  We had an understanding all along. She could take care of herself and I saw to it she had what she needed, and she lived a very peaceful life and was very much a part of the country landscape since 1995.

I remember a few years ago I borrowed a little baby goat for a day to see if I'd like to add a goat to my little farm menagerie, and how other animals would get along with it. After a while I couldn't find Fat Girl.  I looked and looked and later found her in the woods busily building a nest of leaves and twigs. There was no way she was pregnant at the time, so I could only think her motherly instinct clicked in and she was making a nice nest for the little baby goat.  She kept with it and didn't abandon that nest for days even thought I decided to return the goat that same day.

Fat Girl
This photo does not do Fat Girl any justice at all. She was having a bad hair day. Fat Girl was getting old and it was impossible to cut her toenails.  But she loved to have her belly rubbed and to be rubbed all over with oil making her pretty. She never gave me one second of trouble.  Only those who loved their pets can truly understand. I know God does, and I did what I did because I loved her, one of God's creations that I'd had the fortunate opportunity to care for and love for sixteen years. The tears haven't stopped yet.  She was Fat Girl.

I don't think I'm gonna stop missing her.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Sex and spiders

Sex and spiders. Who would have linked the two together?  It's been found that the venom from a spider can help men have better erections.  Check out some of the postings on this subject.
One of the toxins in the venom of the Brazilian wondering spider (also known as the banana spider) has been found to cause lengthy, and I mean time span length,  penis erections, or a condition called priapism.  Hummmm.....now this is interesting. Venom toxin has an effect on a man's erection. I'd like to know how this finding was discovered.   I can see pharmaceutical companies buying lots of these spiders to study venom so they can alter the chemistry and design a substitute venom so it can be patented as a erectile dysfunction drug.  Sure enough, it will come with side effects, unlike the real stuff. Remember why Viagra was taken off the market? It was the nasty side effects.

A 'banana'

Photo credit: messa from morguefile.com

I'm sorry, I can't think of a better image to go with this posting other than a banana.

But just in case you want a more traditional medical method, here are some tips on how to safely purchase the real little blue pill online.  The best to you

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Greater love

I'm mindful of the men and women working at the damaged nuclear reactors in Japan. They are to be commended and honored for putting their well being on the line for the sake of their countrymen and families. They are real heroes.  I can't say enough about this, for it is a real act of love. Love is placing the well being of others ahead of your own. Love is acting with regard for others rather than your own safety and well being. Love is sacrifice. Love is unselfishness. Love is able to do without thinking about what you will get from it. Wow. That's what Jesus did when He hung on the cross. Without love, none of us could live a minute.

Love is the greatest gift to give or receive without question.

Love is the greatest

Photo credit: mzacha from morguefile.com

John 15:13  Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.