Thursday, March 28, 2013

50 by 50

This post was originally published on my old blog in June 2012. I wanted a record of it here so I am re-posting it.
  1. Hot air balloon ride
  2. White water rafting
  3. Spend a week (or a long weekend) at a beach house
  4. Lose at least 50 pounds
  5. Pay off debt
  6. Go somewhere new
  7. Stand up for myself
  8. Write a book– novel- ebook… not going to put limits on it
  9. Take a cruise
  10. Learn how to use my DSLR and all of its functions
  11. Give up diet coke
  12. Grow my blog
  13. Organize shed and storage room
  14. Save 3,000 (ok the original goal said 10,000 but it is only 4 years and I do have debt that needs to be paid off first)
  15. Give up sugar
  16. Update master bedroom
  17. Finish House repairs (master bath, new roof (Feb 2012), replace and paint fascia boards)
  18. Create backyard sanctuary
  19. Let my hair grow back out
  20. Drive cross country
  21. Add 5-10 new states to my “Spend a night in every state goal” (so far I am at 22 + Washington DC)
  22. Complete Birthday Random Acts of Kindness Completed 11/12/2011
  23. Go Minimalist!
  24. Attend Blogging/Writing/Photography conference
  25. Take a Photography Class
  26. Drive from Key Largo to Key West and drive over 7 mile bridge
  27. Plan my Paris getaway
  28. Ride a Segway
  29. Sell sterling silver demitasse set
  30. Create a piece of artwork
  31. Get organized/Reduce clutter
  32. Visit Niagara Falls
  33. Go through books and pare down (this is half way complete!)
  34. Do something with the contents of Mom’s record cabinet
  35. Learn Georgian
  36. Convert CD’s to digital music and get rid of CD’s
  37. Convert Mom’s slides to digital pictures
  38. Organize closets
  39. Go through all paperwork and reduce
  40. Scan all my photographs from Georgia
  41. Be happy
  42. Have a successful pain management plan
  43. Plant or grow a flower garden
  44. Replace screen door on the sliding glass door
  45. Paint the kitchen cabinets
  46. Create a dragonfly garden
  47. Learn how to meditate and do it daily
  48. Go on an adventure
  49. Learn how to cook
  50. Participate in an athletic event

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Emilia's 6th Birthday Party

My niece turned 6 in February. I drove to East Atlanta Village to help celebrate.

She wanted a dance party and that's what she got: complete with disco ball and dance tunes.

The cake was a work of art and I tried to get pictures from every angle. Cost a fortune but OMG, it was worth it.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Language Barrier

I had a long text discussion with an old flame this weekend. I shall spare you the details and just say that I learned an awful lot.

He and I are from different countries, different cultures.We met, we clicked, we had a good time, we ended. I thought I understood the reasons. After yesterday, I am not sure I understand anything anymore.

I took his words at rebi face value. I put my internal spin on all of his actions after. We had several talks after we ended and we had a nice little run in at the Atlanta airport of all places....

How hard is that? To actually run into someone you know and really wanted to see? In Hartsfield Jackson Airport?N

He says his subsequent contact was his indication that he wanted to explore getting back together. Because Rebi lacks confidence and self worth, she never saw any of that.

He told me  yesterday: "I don't want to call you a liar but that is not the image you portray."

Nope, I pretend real well. And I told him that. I let my lack of self worth and value interpret his overtures and they weren't the same language. This man was and still is quite amazing. (I can say all this because I know he will never see it!) But now he's married and while I wish him every happiness in the world, I can't help thinking what if?

What if I hadn't been full of low self esteem?

What if I hadn't assumed that he didn't want to be with me?

What if I had had the confidence to tell him how I really felt?

What if I hadn't done what I always do and push people away before they push me away?

I learned so much yesterday that I certainly hope to carry with me into any future relationships-- and not just romantic ones. I have value and it's time I showed the world I expect to be treated with such.

Saturday, March 9, 2013


It is 5:45 in the morning. I am sitting outside a friends house waiting to pick her up. We are headed to the funeral of the father of a fiend of ours.

We're it not for this I am not sure I could have made it out of bed today.

It's a very, very dark day. I definitely need some light

I need to be strong today.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Random Light

In no particular order these are some pictures I have taken over the last few months. I think the earliest might be October and they go through Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas. I didn't really notice a trend until I downloaded everything into Dropbox and could see them side by side over the months. 

 My friend Yvonne and her husband, Andy, drove over to Atlantic Station in early December to see the lighting of the Christmas Tree there. I took a ton of pictures that night.. and there are some that have way more light. There were all sorts of lighted animals but I loved this one most. Because quite unintentionally I got the moon in the picture and I think it makes it that much more beautiful.

Of course, a tree lighting requires a stop at the cheesecake place. Even when taking pictures of my scrumptious dessert, I had to have the flicker of the candle. That was an awesome piece of cheesecake and I couldn't even finish it!

 This was taken at Belloo's., My favorite Martini and Cigar bar. I was playing with the HDR settings and drinking a glass of Moscato. I liked how the overhead lights played with the glass.

 My brother and sister in law have a 6 year old. I can't decide what I liked best.. the light from the high window, the tree and star lights or the mantle lights. I liked that I could get them all in the picture. We are going to ignore the fact that I didn't edit this photo and take the TV light out!

 In December  I had to go to Washington DC for business and stayed at the Grand Hyatt. My room (because I checked in obscenely early) was on the 6th floor. I prefer higher floors with better views of night lights. This is the view from the landing outside the elevators on the 6th floor looking down at the lobby. One of the prettiest hotels I have ever stayed in and they were actually undergoing renovations so it's going to be even more gorgeous when they are done. 
 This is the view looking up at the ceiling from the 6th floor elevator landing. 

 When you travel during Hanukkah, you take your menorah, cards and candles with you. Or at least I do. I made sure I had dripless candles so I didn't tick the cleaning crew off. As you can tell from the hideous view that the 6th floor of the Grand Hyatt does not afford you awesome views. Oh well. 

During the training I had an occasion to attend a symposium held at the Renaissance Hotel down the street near the Hyatt. In their lobby I saw my FIRST EVER Hanukkah decoration in a public place. Yes, I am 47 and this is MY FIRST. I asked them if I could take a picture to commemorate that special occasion. PS for those that don't know... it was the 4th night of Hanukkah! 

 In November I had Thanksgiving at my friend Yvonne's parents just outside Atlanta. I loved these candle holders and the way she had decorated the whole house. I almost asked if I could light the candle just for the picture! But I was a better guest than that. I did take left overs home though, so it was all good!
 I think this picture is probably the oldest of the set because I took it at the key ceremony for our 5th Columbus Cottage Resident and I think that was spring.. His parents planted the pecan tree when they got married and moved into the house many, many years ago. Our Cottage program demolished the old house and built him a new one on the same footprint. He simply asked that we spare the tree. The day we gave him the keys to his new house, I saw the sun coming through the pecan tree and I felt like his parents were watching and smiling knowing their son would spend the remainder of his days in a safe and healthy home. 

OK I promise I do not have a problem with alcohol. I rarely drink it. But the dragonfly wine glass came from a friend and I loved how the light of the candle below (which isn't in the picture) is reflected in the wine and the shadows that are created. (I'm sure it is Moscato again, that's about all I drink these days. 

Sunday, March 3, 2013


Seven years ago today my beloved Mother died. She left this world and moved on to the next. We weren't finished; we still needed her.  Not a day goes by that I don't think of something to ask her or something to tell her.

But I know she watches. She sees. She looks over us and watches Bailee and Emilia grow. She knows.

I still tell her things and I still behave just as she would have wanted.

I am who I am today because of how she raised me and the love she gave me.

On this day, as on all days, I remember. 

Saturday, March 2, 2013

New Beginnings

I had a blog. A dedicated website complete with host. And I loved my blog before it became a "chore". I looked forward to posting pictures and sharing tales. 

Then it became a reminder of lost hopes and dreams and foolish notions that ceased to exist. I tried to make it something it wasn't. And I grew to dread the mere presence. 

And I stopped going to the Garden. I found excuses to not go and to not share and to not post. 

Reminders to renew web hosting go ignored. Writing takes a back seat. 

When Gardens aren't tended, they die. That is what happened to The Dragonfly Garden. 

At first, I started to worry. I thought : "Oh no, my posts, my pictures!" 

And then I took a deep breath and thought, the pictures still exist. Those aren't lost at all. I realized that it is just like my journals after my Mother, z'l, died. I burned and shredded all but two of them. (I kept the one that contained all my writings about my trip to the USSR and one about Virgil; the rest went up in smoke.)

I explored my feelings more closely and realized that with the exception of one post, I was more relieved than anything else. I thought about what drove me to my blog in the first place....

Needing a creative outlet after the journals burned. I thought of where I started out... at blogspot. And realized that I could start fresh. I could take the journey of the last 12 months; a journey that nearly did me in, and start over. 

Back where I was in the beginning. 

I thought of what had helped me. I thought of what I looked forward to. I thought about where I wanted to go. 

I looked at pictures I had taken and never shared with others over the dark period and realized that more and more, my pictures involved some form of light. 

I realized I had been craving the light to help me find my way. 

And Bella Luce was born.

Beautiful Light.

I know I will make mistakes. I know some mistakes to avoid in the future. But I know that it has to be more about what helps me find the light.