…finding the extraordinary in everyday life.

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Returning to the blog…

I’ve decided to return to this blog and use it as a more personal space for cultivating my gratitude.  In the past, I’ve kept a gratitude journal.  It was a place where I’d record several things I was grateful for in a day.  Some days, it was easy.  On other days, it’s not so simple to find things for which to be grateful.  However, it seems a bit more meaningful on the difficult days.  It reminds me that no matter what happens, life really is a beautiful thing.  There are numerous good things every single day.

Today, I’m grateful for:

1. my hearing… because the sound of the birds outside my window as I drink coffee and write this is so beautiful and serene;

2. my family… because they know almost everything about me and love me just the same;

3. my other support people… because they provide the voice of reason;

4. my health… though I’m working on improving it in general through weight loss, I’m so grateful I’ve been spared weight-related illness that could have impacted my quality of life even further — so grateful; and

5. for my job… I’m so happy to be in a job that I not only enjoy but also believe in… I know that I’m doing good things every day… and the best is yet to come.


A Thursday Excursion

Florida & More

I took so many photos during my two week sojourn to Ohio, Savannah, GA, and Florida.  I’m going to put them on here in a couple of categories.  First, Savannah, GA.  Second, my top five photos.  Third, eleven honorable mentions.  And finally, photos from around Preble County of what I like to call “great big puppies.”  There are so many more I could share, but these are the most representative of the 178 photos I took.

First up — Savannah, Georgia

County Courthouse with flag on top at half-mast on September 11th.

Savannah oak trees with Spanish moss… so tranquil.

A lovely palm tree by a building

My Top Five Favorite Photos … (okay, could only narrow to six)

The Honorable Mentions

The Great Big Puppies

Mom and I drove around the country in Preble County Friday evening.  I got out of the car to call the cows, and they came over to the fence just like big puppies.  They were so curious and had such expressive faces.  There’s no way I can eat another bit of beef.  Look at these beautiful, graceful animals.

My Library & More of Little Serena

Sometimes, I take pictures during the day too.  This is my Library… a good place to be.  There’s a lovely view looking toward the upper stacks on the other side, but the view is obscured by “art.”  So, I took the photo of the staircase and reading area instead.  Taken from the reference area.

Just because…

And Serena.  First, one of her favorite activities (yes, you’ve seen a similar photo before, but she does it ALL the time).

In the following few photos, Serena attacks her little yellow ducky that’s stuffed with catnip.

And in the following photos, Serena attempts to take a cat nap while I attempt to take a high quality photo of her in her new pink bed so sweetly gifted by Melissa, the librarian (thank you, Melissa).

“Ugh, that camera again,” sighed Serena.

With diminishing patience, Serena stated, “A little consideration, please.”

She tried to ignore the camera.

I put the camera away after one more photo when she covered her little eyes and said, “Please, please, just stop this.  It’s sssooooooo tedious.”

Serena’s First Photos

I’ve stalked this poor cat with the camera for two days now, but I still can’t get a good photo with her eyes open.  Unsurprisingly, she detests the flash.  I’ll get that perfect photo soon.  These introductory photos will suffice for now.

Her favorite activity is watching out the patio doors.  I need to get a bird feeder to put out there to help ensure a steady supply of birds to watch while I’m out at the Library every day.

Serena said with great annoyance, “Get that flash out of my face.”

Her face isn’t even in them, but I love these next two photos.  They show her pensive side.  She is so content, peaceful, and serene.  She is just precious!!!

Melissa said, “Michele, you’re the hero in this situation for giving an adult cat a home.”  I see her point, but I feel like I’m the one who received a tremendous gift.  Serena has a wonderful personality, she’s entertaining, she’s so smart, and I think she’s a deep thinker too.  We’re going to get along just swimmingly.

My Trip to Denver

I put a lot of photos on here, but these are just about 20% of the ones I took.  It’s difficult to choose which ones to post.

The first few are in and around the Colorado Convention Center.  Isn’t the bear great?!

Along the 16th Street Mall… yes, that’s a man with a huge pink teddy bear.  At first, I thought I might be hallucinating due to the altitude.  Alas, no hallucinations.

The city placed numerous painted pianos along the streets.  Anyone can play them.  It’s incredible really.  There are times when you pass someone playing who you might never expect would be a piano player.  Somehow, those are the players that made me smile inside and out.

Denver’s World Trade Center

Red Rocks Park.  Photos fail to express the magnitude and majesty of these mountains, these rocks, these geographical marvels.

Denver in the distance from Red Rocks Park.

At Buffalo Bill’s gravesite.  I love this photo.

From the parking lot at the gravesite.

Denver’s skyline from parking lot at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science.

Pottery & my work environment

This is the piece of pottery I painted at the Firefly Studio a few weeks ago.  It was so much fun doing this.  The most interesting part is that I just did this without any pre-conceived ideas on what type of pattern to use.  I just did it as it came to me… colors that struck me, patterns that emerged.  I can’t wait to do it again.

And this is the famous, brand new desk the law school purchased for my office.  It’s gorgeous, it’s huge, it’s just perfect!!  I couldn’t be more fortunate.  The picture really doesn’t do it justice though.