capturing me…


(Me multi-tasking: participating in one of today’s sessions on my iPad, taking a photo with my iPhone and drafting this post!)

One of my creative pursuits involves capturing my life “memories and moments, my stories on this planet via words+photos:

  • I capture stories  in my journals, on this blog..
  • I participate in online classes, forums and groups … all which are designed to both encourage and instruct…
  • I use ( tho’ rarely) social media, primarily Instagram…
  • I make scrapbook layouts, such as those I shared in my  Collecting October 2018 post
  • I belong to two scrapbooking membership groups. Both sponsor group activities that engage and inspire their membership, provide for instruction and most importantly, incentive, inspiration and opportunity  for members to meet online via their sites, chat, and thanks to today’s technology: gatherings online.  These platforms, such as Zoom, enable us to see, talk, create, share, offer one another assistance, in real time! 


This weekend, one group is celebrating its 10th Anniversary. We’re having a three day, almost round-the-clock live (and being recorded) event. I am grateful that I am a member of this group, have the time and the resources – WiFi, computer; iPad; – to join the festivities with the community. So far, it’s been not only fun and instructive but also inspirational – made possible by today’s Internet technology. Around the world in less than a half second!

We’re on a break.. enough time for me to take a brisk walk on this very sunny, windy autumn day. TBC…



on gratitude and writing…


This morning, during MSQT – morning solitude and quiet time – I thought a lot about gratitude and writing. In a way, they are synonymous to me. I can’t seem to think about /express one without the other.

MSQT begins when I go downstairs and set up my space/place at the table: I pull my Raskog book cart close to the table, take the lamp off  and set it on the table. Next, set placemats out: one is for my journal, the other, my tea  mug and water glass; both sit on a small tray. Finally, I arrange other paraphernalia: pens; my journal; my iPad and iPhone, plugging which ever one might need a charge into the outlet on the lamp; and the book/s I’m currently reading. I then boil water (in the microwave) for tea and fix myself a glass of ice-cold water. When the water is boiled, I take the mug to the table, sit, plop in my tea bag and breathe for 4-5 minutes. Once that’s done, I am ready to write.

My daily journal entry always begins with the date, time, a “brief weather report” in the form of a graphic: a cloud or sun or snowflake. Next I write a bit about the day before, today’s upcoming agenda, my thoughts, feelings, plans, ideas, surroundings, memories, and gratitudes.

I find that I enjoy the physical act of writing, of making letters, forming sentences, expressing thoughts, ideas, feelings, describing my surroundings, anticipating and/or relishing my experiences. I also read – generally a book that helps me explore a current or long-time interest, poetry, or an essay. Most often, books by writers on the practice of writing. Hard work.

I write, not because I want to publish – anything beyond a blog post – but because it fills my soul …and for that, I am grateful.

What fills your soul?


3 on Thursday | 11.8.2018…


Today was meet up with my Thursday stitching friends. We met at our friend who, three weeks ago, had major foot surgery. Tho’ confined to her apartment – a 3rd floor walkup – she gets around with a scooter that has a seat. It works well for the space and keeps her mobile. We brought potluck: soup, salads, and desserts. We had a good time: catching up, sharing, reviewing the week’s elections and other political news. The drive was especially beautiful. The trees have nearly reached their peak; on the way home, sunlight streamed so one could get a deeper look into the interior. I wished I could stop and take a few dozen photos; of course, that wasn’t possible. I am grateful, though, for the visuals inscribed in my memory.

As I drove, taking in the rich deep colors of the changing trees, I kept thinking, out loud:  I am thankful that I live in an area that has four seasons! I love seeing Mother Nature’s wonders: trees, flowers, birds, butterflies, the sky –  and sometimes, the temperature is just right!  Autumn is my favorite season. Despite the cold, I do like Winter, especially on days after a fresh snowfall, generally few in these parts. Then Spring…and again, the trees don their gently colored frocks. Lastly, Summer; it’s the humidity that gets me. Were it not, I’d probably not mind as much.

I use the Apple Watch Breathe app to start my mornings…as my tea steeps. I am finding that this simple 4-6 minutes activity helps  me set a calmer, more positive tone for my thoughts and  the day. And when I’m frazzled, which is often <smile>, I turn to the breath. I am grateful that I have incorporated this simple and generally available technique in my lifeApple Watch or app not needed!

Joining Carole and others for another Thursday 3!


il pleut à verse*…


My weatherman – Norman – said today was going to be sunny! Ha! He’s fired!

It rained hard…not good for voting. I can only hope that the downpour is confined to DC…tho’ I doubt that is the case. Nationally, today’s votes in DC do not count because we don’t have a vote in Congress. We are, however, voting for the mayor , city council , US. state’s attorney and school board.

In between very.heavy. downpours, we had Norman’s Benz towed (yet again for service) about a mile and a half, returned home to change clothes – we were soaked – and then drove two blocks to our voting place, again getting soaked, perhaps 15 steps between the car and the entrance to the polls.

Despite the pouring rain and the fact that residents of our Nation’s capital do not have a vote in Congress, I am grateful that we, the people, exercise our right and civic duty to vote. My parents always voted; I grew up when voting age was 21 years in this country. I will vote until I no longer can.

As I bring this post to a close, the rain’s stopped; it appears the sky is brightening. Perhaps that’s a good sign…


*it’s raining very hard

@sunrise …


6:30 am:  On this first day of the return to “normal” time, I stand on the deck, inhale the crisp autumn morning air – it’s only 37°F!  I had the presence of mind to put on a jacket and hat…and I’m glad I did! I look upward to the sky, ribbons of pink-tinged clouds and jet contrails, planes headed to National Airport, greet me. Birds swiftly fly toward the morning sun, so fast I can’t/don’t capture with my iPhone.

The tree, “this tree,” that I observe through every season, is fast loosing its leaves. Everyday, I can see more of its magnificent structure. Still, at the very top, are bright yellow leaves…causing me to remember the symphony of color that greets us these days as we walk, ride, drive, are out and about – on errands, on the way to work, play or home. The season is ending; leaves gather on sidewalks, lawns. Mother Nature prepares for the next.

On this thought, I turn to go inside to fix my first cuppa tea and listen to Sunday Baroque…and I think how grateful I am for the life I’ve had… and to welcome another day.


IMG_5869Thinking: Soon all the leaves will have fallen and the trees will be bare. Colder temps are at hand; days, shorter; nights, longer.  Last year we had very c-o-l-d temperatures; more of the same? Looking back, I attended a baby shower for Elias, right before Veteran’s Day. Little did we know then that he was going to join us two months ahead of schedule.

Grateful: On the 27th of this month, Elias celebrates his first birthday. Amazing! He’s almost standing by himself so I expect he’ll be ambling around any day now! We are eternally grateful that both he and his mom are well. Life is good!

Inspiration: Norman and I were trying to decide when the “holiday  shopping season,” would begin. I think it already has – which reminds me that I’ve a storage room in the basement to clear out … so we can get to the holiday decorations. I think we may need a new tree.


Fun: The boys: Chris (4) and Elias  (11 months) went “trick or treating” – their first – at a local retail mall. Chris enjoyed the experience; Elias, the cookie! Dolly plans to make a gingerbread house with big brother Chris. I think I’ll join in the fun, too, having never made one. Perhaps I’ll have them come here. And maybe we’ll make ornaments and an Advent Calendar for Chris; he’d like that! I’m full of ideas and memories. We – my mom and I – had an ornament -making party for Dolly when she was just about 5 – 27 years ago. She remembers and so do I!

Norman appreciated all the birthday wishes. He had just the day that he wanted: quiet and peaceful. And I concur. We are both grateful for every moment his day brought and look forward to more gratitude -filled moments and days. Peace and…


Come In!



Welcome November and NaBloPoMo: National Blog Posting Month. I believe this is  my eighth year.  I plan to focus this month’s posts on the theme of Gratitude: 30 things (at least) in my life for which I am grateful. As each day comes, it brings a host of everyday small yet very important things: memories, events, and people, etc that brighten my life…


IMG_5828 (1)

What better way to begin November than to celebrate Norman’s 85th birthday!  Yep, this “Kid from Chicago” is 85 today! We have no big plans – I offered; he said he’d rather spend a quiet, ordinary day at home. Wish granted! (Quiet as it’s kept: My vote was for a quiet-at-home day, too!)

Over the past month, I’ve not been very idle. I spent a lot of time looking at and trying  on themes for the blog,  sort of like trying on clothes, not on my “fave things to do” list… plus waiting for answers (via email) from WordPress staff.  Despite the fact that I’ve had experience with Word Press, setting up a blog from scratch turns out not to be as easy as I’d expected…however, thanks to friends Kat and Mary, and my niece Christian, I’m learning.

I also made 31 more story/scrapbook layouts. Some are included on the COLLECT photo collage that I’ll share over the weekend!

It’s good to be back! In fact, it’s great! I  look forward to reconnecting and spending these next 30 days with you! Thank you for being here. Know that friends are truly one of the greatest blessings in my life.