Isn't It Remarkable...

Funny how much a person can change. There was a time I would have rushed to sweep those cobwebs away, thinking they'd ruin my photograph.  I still did have that thought initially.  But I paused. I think it's in that pause that I begin to listen with my heart, instead of my head.

Hummingbirds need the protein from insects, in addition to the nectar they get from flowers and feeders.  If I  leave it alone... then she'll get a complete meal from time to time.  I wonder if she already ate the spider.. or if the spider heard the hum and said.. Oh man!  I am SO out of here.  Either way, the web looks pretty in the sunlight and it's still sticky.:)  Breakfast buffet for hummingbirds.  

I watched a tiny spider, no bigger than the head of a pin, build a web this morning, while I drank my coffee.  I am surrounded by ordinary miracles every day, without ever leaving home.   

It's not that unusual
When everything is beautiful
It's just another ordinary miracle today

The sky knows when it's time to snow
Don't need to teach a seed to grow
It's just another ordinary miracle today

Life is like a gift they say
Wrapped up for you everyday
Open up and find a way
To give some of your own

Isn't it remarkable
Like every time a raindrop falls
It's just another ordinary miracle today

Birds in winter have their fling
Will always make it home by spring
It's just another ordinary miracle today

When you wake up everyday
Please don't throw your dreams away
Hold them close to your heart
'Cause we're all a part of the ordinary miracle

Do you want to see a miracle?

It seems so exceptional
That things just work out after all
It's just another ordinary miracle today

Sun comes up and shines so bright
And disappears again at night
It's just another ordinary miracle today

-Glen Ballard, David Allan Stewart

Memories and Kindness Remain

As the mother of three teenage sons, it isn't very often that I get to do many girlie things. Usually we watch movies where things are getting blown to pieces and we play video games where cars are racing around tracks (or in my case.. smashing into walls).  We eat meat and talk loud and joke about "guy" things and I am always laughing and physically tired at the end of a day. I grew up with lots of brothers so it's a world I know and feel most comfortable with.  It's an even bigger blessing being the mother of boys, than it was being a sister to them... especially mine.  

But once in awhile, I get to do something really special with the women in my extended family and I can imagine what it's like to be the mother of a daughter. I think I would have liked that. I'm working on a photography project for my sister in law and going through the photographs I took that day, I found myself lingering over one of them.  The day was really so special.  That lovely woman up there is my mother in law. She's such a classy, strong, beautiful woman.  I've known her since 1986 and I've grown to deeply respect her over the last three decades of my life.  We had her daughter's bridal shower out in my backyard and I had spent weeks going to second hand stores and gathering up all the china teacups I could find, to make these special little favors for the women to take home with them. Everything was tinged with pink because that is her favorite color and I was in my girlie glory.:) We ended up with a perfect sunny day and my hydrangeas were in full bloom all around the tent.  I've been out there in the garden a lot lately and these beautiful memories wash over me in sounds, scents, and vivid mental pictures I've stored up in my heart.  Recalling them now is a way of being kind to myself, I suppose.  Many gifts went home with her that day, but the memories remain with me... forever.

What Really Counts

Last night we had the most beautiful thunderstorms all night long.  I've always loved them but there was a furry little critter vibrating beside me, shaking in fear with every crack.  I wish I could instill my love for them into her so it wouldn't feel scary to her.  Instead, I just fold her in and keep her close and help her to ride it out.  As I listen to my kids get ready for school this morning, I recognize that this is one of the beauties of being connected to family.  It's a safe place always... to ride out any storm.  

We didn't get a lot of sleep last night, but I still find myself smiling.  She wakes up like sunshine every morning, no matter how bad the night has been.  I could learn a thing or two from that.:)  She has her own gallery... did you know?  It's right....  here.  Good morning, Sunshine!  

A person can learn a lot from a dog .... about living each day with unbridled exuberance and joy, about seizing the moment and following your heart. ...to appreciate the simple things - a walk in the woods, a fresh snowfall, a nap in a shaft of winter sunlight - and about friendship and selflessness and, above all else, unwavering loyalty.

A dog has no use for fancy cars or big homes or designer clothes. Status symbol means nothing to him. A waterlogged stick will do just fine. A dog judges others not by their color or creed or class but by who they are inside. A dog doesn’t care if you are rich or poor, educated or illiterate, clever or dull. Give him your heart and he will give you his. It was really quite simple, and yet we humans, so much wiser and more sophisticated, have always had trouble figuring out what really counts and what does not. As I wrote that column ... I realized it was all right there in front of us, if only we opened our eyes. Sometimes it took a dog with bad breath, worse manners, and pure intentions to help us see.
— John Grogan