Clearing Your Head


I have a question for you.  How do you clear your head?  What works for you?


Sometimes my vision get clouded and obscured like the windshield on my car in the Header Photo of this blog.
Correction, I have changed this blog’s theme and Header Photo about 5 times, so here is the photo I referenced. 

DSC_0265 copy

I took that photo from the backseat on a quick day trip to SF.  We wanted to take a visitor from Africa to the city and that rainy day was our only option.  San Francisco, by the way, looks just as good in the rain.  I’m thankful though for the windshield wipers that make it easier to read street signs and get where you’re going.

Sometimes I wish life came with windshield wipers to help clarify the road ahead and make the important signs easier to read.

I found that even a brief exposure to The Great Outdoors can generate clarity.  

We just returned from a few days in the Sierras and I feel deep down refreshed and refocused.

The sound of wind in tall pines, a completely non-manmade sound, felt like it blew through me not just around me.  It makes the aspen leaves quake, but it made me go still.  The craggy skyline of pine and fir draped like a shawl over the shoulders of those mountains pulled my eyes up from the low horizon and helped me see some things through a wider lens.

I didn’t go to the mountains looking for clarity, but I’m glad I discovered it when I got there.

So, fellow bloggers and friends, I’m wondering what helps you clear your head?  What do you do purposely to gain clarity?  Or have you happily stumbled on it like I did?
Driving home today a line of Psalm 95 came to mind.

For the LORD is the great God the great King above all gods.
In his hands are the depths of the earth, and the mountain peaks belong to him.
The sea is his, for he made it, and his hands formed the dry land 
Come, let us bow down in worship,
let us kneel before the LORD our Maker;
for he is our God and we are the people of his pasture,
the flock under his care.

Old School “Brownie” Camera

Motherhood has been revolutionized by the invention of the Digital Camera.

Like it’s not enough that we start this Motherhood Journey with morning sickness and stretch marks, culminating in a protracted experiment in sleep deprivation.

We are then suppose to nourish, protect, and civilize our progeny—WHILE taking and preserving for posterity a pictorial record of every event large and small.

One of the greatest challenges of motherhood has been conquered by a slow and steady advance in the technology of photography.

Digital camera technology goes back to 1951 and Bing Crosby.
I’m not making this up.
You can just Google it if you’re really interested.

Then NASA added their 2-cents worth.
Anyway, fast-forward to 1991 when the 1.3 megapixel Nikon F3 based Kodak (DCS) Digital Camera System release was—forgive the pun—aimed at photojournalists.

Guess who made the first digital camera aimed at the consumer market?
I’ll give you a hint: it was designed to work with a HOME COMPUTER via a serial cable.
The date was February 17, 1994.

Now do you know?

Apple, of course.  Ta-dah!   It was called the Apple Quick Take 100 camera.

So let’s re-write the slogan: New Version: It’s as American as Motherhood and Apple.

My hubby and I went to the movies and saw about 3 previews for new movies with plots revolving around time travel and the prospect of a LIFE RE-DO OPPORTUNITY.

One of them actually had this line in the trailer, “In the future,  time travel will be banned for all but a few, these are the Loopers”.

They skipped over the part about time travel actually being invented.
It must have gotten out of hand though because it got banned.

If time travel was possible, I’d go back and give my Mom a great digital camera and lots of memory cards.
Then instead of torn and bent black & white pictures that were stuffed in an old box in the bottom of the Linen closet,
I’d have about 3000 more pictures in iPhoto—all of me.  I could Photoshop them and look awesome.  
I could literally re-write the history of My Life in Pictures.

Kodak, a company now bankrupt, but once synonymous with pictures, has had several great advertising slogans.

But I have a beef with Kodak over their slogans: they are misleading.  

The first was by George Eastman himself.
You Press The Button, We Do The Rest.

Kodak Slogan by George Eastman

False advertising if I ever heard it.
Back when George gave us this little zinger the button was the first step in a long process that required professional developing and special paper.

Then came, Share Moments. Share Life.

Still Not the Whole Story

It conjures up pictures of Birthdays & Holidays & all the Special Firsts of childhood.

I’m all choked up and I can’t see through the viewfinder with all these tears in my eyes.
But still, this is not all there was to it at the time.  
It was never point and click—-until it was too late for me and my kids.

I tried to take pictures.
Of course, I could never tell if I got the shot until the film was developed and the moment had passed.

I tried to get them put in albums.
Of course the plastic sheet covers stuck to them and then turned everything a “sick” sepia tone color.

I hate Kodak.

I’m glad they are BANKRUPT.

I love my Nikon D50.

One day I’m gonna learn how to use it on something other than autofocus.

If you’ve read other posts you’ve seen my grandkids.
I’m forgiving Kodak and trying again with improved technology and another generation.

Tomorrow is my birthday.

I thought about a serious post focusing on maturity and how to tell if you’ve got it.
Then I though, maturity is like good hair: you either have it, or you don’t.

I do. Not the hair, the maturity. Thankfully my hair is still ok, it’s not POWER HAIR like Jacqueline Kennedy or Brooke Shields, but so far it’s all present and accounted for.
As for the maturity, I had it when I was young, which is not how anyone would currently describe me.
And I guess they won’t in the future if they don’t currently.
That ship has sailed.

T. S. Elliot, the guy who wrote Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats which Andrew Lloyd Webber made into a hit musical called, of course, Cats , wrote that “the years between fifty and seventy are the hardest. You are always being asked to do things, and yet you are not decrepit enough to turn them down”.
If T.S. were still around he might have to revise his numbers because I keep hearing absurd things like 60 is the new 40.
That sounded just stupid about 5 years ago.
Now I’m looking for medical research that supports it as fact.

The truth is that life isn’t about Quantity as much as Quality.
It’s not about how long you live, but how fully you live.

I titled this blog A Really Full Life because that’s my personal goal.
Jesus said, “I came to give life—life in all its fullness”. John 10:10

I haven’t yet written the About Page for this blog. I’m having technical difficulties—AGAIN.
When I do, you’ll discover that I’m a christian.
I asked Jesus to forgive my sin and come into my life over 42 years ago
on August 18, 1970.

You know what I want for my birthday?
I want you to meet Jesus too.
I don’t know where you are on your life timeline, but I can promise you that if you don’t know Jesus, you’re not living A Really Full Life.

So here’s my gift to you:
The good news is this, Jesus Christ is God come to earth in human form to offer himself as a sacrifice for sin.
He did it because of His great love for you and because you couldn’t do it for yourself.
For it is by grace you’ve been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9)

The most important decision you’ll make in this life is what you believe about Jesus Christ.
That decision will determine all of eternity for you.

I’d love to share more about Jesus with you.  If you want to know more, just ASK.

While I’m sharing, here’s the link to my favorite Birthday Cake recipe and a picture.

My Favorite Birthday Cake

The Joys of Friendship

Best Friends

Like millions of others I’m participating in Social Networking.

My question is this:  has it made us any more friendly?
It’s easy and sometimes there’s meaningful and even important info in the News Feed, but I don’t know if I’m a better friend for the time and effort I’ve put into Facebook.

I came across this picture of my grandson Ethan and his school friends in my Photo Library and it made me think about all the joys of friendship.

I went all through school with the same group of kids.
Some of them are in my earliest memories.  We walked to school and home together.
We ran from dogs, we climbed trees, we had sleepovers, and swam all summer long until Fall when we started walking to school together again.
Over time we all moved on, or away, or apart.

My Dad had a lifelong friendship with a guy named. . .wait for it, Bud.
Bill & Bud went to school together, then off to war together,  having survived that harrowing experience, my Dad in the Pacific and Bud in Europe, they came home, found girls, and acted as each other’s Best Man.  They each had 3 kids and each spent their lives married to just one woman.  They enjoyed a continuity and a depth of friendship that only grows via time and shared experience.  My Dad and Bud were loyal friends until Bud passed away.  My Mom and Dad continued to visit Carol, Bud’s widow, until my Dad also passed away.  Now my Mom visits Carol on her own.

I’m determined to be a better friend and to cultivate the friendships I have.

I want to keep adding layers of experience with each one and allow them a bigger piece of my heart, share of my time, and place in my life.

People, people who need people
Are the luckiest people in the world.
Bob Merrill, People

The Ravioli Shop in Jackson, CA.
The Ravioli Shop in Jackson, CA.

Excellent Ravioli, inside parking, and is there a gas pump in there too?

Unlike many bloggers in the Weekly Photo Challenge, I don’t know how to use Photoshop.

I’m not whining, I’ve had to choose between Photoshop and learning how to insert photographs into this blog in the appropriate sequence.
Learning Photoshop is on my To Do List, and the course is already purchased and waiting on Udemy, but I couldn’t complete it in time to make this challenge.

I’m still throwing my hat in the ring with this shot I almost deleted as a bad one because of the reflection.
Don’t you love serendipity?
I think this un-Photoshopped version is cool.
And I happen to be Editor-in-Chief of this blog.

Let me tell you the backstory behind the photo.
My hubby and I were taking a day for ourselves as the ramp-up to our 27th anniversary celebration.

We drove our JAMES BOND Mercedes convertible,
that’s the one with the top that folds down automatically into the trunk and makes my grandkids say ‘AWESOME’.
I forgot where I was going with that super long run on sentence.

Let me start again, we drove up into the foothills near Jackson to see if Teresa’s Restaurant still had great Italian food.
They do. Great margaritas too.
We talked non-stop and shared memories of our life together—so far.
There are still chapters to be written in this romance/adventure novel we experience as our life.
I call him Mr. Spontaneity because I never know what he might decide to do next. Like, move to Africa.
You think I’m kidding.
Other wives, the fainthearted kind, couldn’t have hacked it with my guy, but he’s perfect for me because my name is Kelly
and in Celtic it means WARRIOR WOMAN.
Info my husband says “might have been useful 27.5 years ago”.

Turn #6

Having been a race car driver, my hubby loves curvy roads that tap into some of the German Engineering built into his TOY CAR. Thankfully there are other motorists and the CHP that rein him in so it doesn’t turn into a white knuckle experience for me. I just get to feel a little Grace Kelly in How to Catch a Thief minus the scarf and the French Riviera.


Is it all you’d hoped it would be? I included the photo so you’d know that THIS IS THE TERESA’S I AM TALKING ABOUT.
You can’t judge a book by its cover.
The food is good, the wine & Margaritas are good, and the TIRAMISU is required eating.
If you need some good conversation too, my hubby and I are usually free on Thursdays.

Coming home we stopped in Jackson to fill up the tank on the, “Excuse me, I’m German and can only use PREMIUM GRADE FUEL” Mercedes

I really took the photo of the Homemade Ravioli place because I’d seen a story about Alphabet Photography (
and I was taking pictures of church steeples that looked like capital A’s and this porch across from Teresa’s that looked like a stretched out M and I thought the large rectangle of the Ravioli place looked interesting as a possible backdrop for a collage.

I’m glad I hadn’t gotten around to hitting delete before I saw the new Weekly Photo Challenge: Merge.
My shot isn’t great photography, but it put me in touch with some very special memories.
Isn’t that one of the best things a photo can do?

Once in 2,737 Years

Sindy's Saturday Satsang

Planetary Alignment with the Giza Pyramids, it only happens once in 2,737 years.

Planetary alignment that will take place Dec 3, 2012  is dead-on alignment with the Pyramids at Giza. Night Sky in Giza, Egypt on December 3, 2012, local time


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Beach House

Ship Inspired Beach House

Have you been to Southern California? If you live there, well, I’m jealous, envious, bitter, and have a little malice in my heart toward you.
I used to live there. When we moved, taking our 3 kids, about 2.7 million people moved in to fill the void.
The 405 is 6 lanes each direction, but gridlock remains for many hours of the daily commute and at maddeningly unpredictable hours on the weekends.
And PCH (Pacific Coast Highway for you who aren’t yet on a first name basis), well let’s just say the Highway part is optimistic language.

It’s no mystery why the population continues to swell instead of flowing out like water to fill in the lonely landscape of say, the desert east of Palm Springs, into Nevada, or even up to Montana.

It’s the BEACH.

The wide Pacific graces the west coast making the landscape, the weather, and the views extraordinary.

After dinner one evening we drove through some of the local neighborhoods where the lots are small and the houses are big.
On a street filled with stately Tudors, Spanish style adobes, and lean Modern innovations, I came across this Ocean Liner inspired design.
Nothing on these streets is original. Everything is a remodel.
Inside and out, top to bottom these homes endure regular cycles of renewal and reclamation.

I was too embarrassed to look like the tourist I was and waited until the owners had gone inside before taking out my camera.
So, what you don’t see in the shot is them sitting on the upper deck with friends. They were having wine and laughing.

Since they probably didn’t know I was a tourist, I don’t think they were doing it to gloat or rub salt in my wounds, but I’m not certain.

The views from the 1st deck must be great, but the 360 they get from the upper deck would be breathtaking.
People don’t buy houses there.
They buy a lifestyle.
Not everyone is athletic, tan, blonde, beautiful, and successful, but there are enough that it skews the curve.

A Beach House represents a dream for most of us non-coastal types.
Lazy days spent in old khaki shorts and flip-flops, riding bikes, and walking the dog on the beach inhabit our coffee break daydreams.
Fish tacos for dinner and drinking wine with friends as the sun goes down all has to be crammed into one week on the yearly calendar.
If we’re lucky.


The Cheap, that is to say, Free Seats

So while a week at the Beach tops the Dream Vacation Idea List, you don’t need to spend the Kid’s College Fund to enjoy Sunrise or Sunset views.
There are still some Cheap Seats for the 2 best showtimes everyday.
Some wise folks in the past reserved a place for everyone.

The Ocean Liner Beach House is a dream, but eating ice cream cones and walking barefoot in the sand with my hubby—that’s a dream come true.

Did you notice I learned how to insert Media appropriately interspersed in the text?
I rented my cap & gown for the graduation ceremony.

Postaday has generated a renewed motivation to sit down everyday and commit to a post.
I wish you good people at WordPress could create something as effective for my exercise habits.

Today I’ve been thinking about passion.
This is Bekka who loves her horses and plays with them everyday. I thought when she started horseback riding lessons she’d drop the play ones, but her favorite gift is always another horse,
or more of the paraphernalia that goes with the horses or the huge wooden barn that takes up about 4 square feet of the bedroom.

In my experience kids are fickle about toys.
They beg and whine until they get the new ‘object of their affection’ and the next day you find it under their pj’s on the floor or in the back of the closet in the toy graveyard.
But, even kids can demonstrate remarkable dedication when something taps into their passion.

I’ve been in a migrating pattern throughout the Social Network.






and back to WordPress

I like the visual components of Pinterest and tumblr, but this week of daily posting has shown me that I need to create rather than curate.
The satisfaction comes from tapping into my passion for communication.
Sharing what moves me to laughter and tears, what inspires my compassion and dedication, and ideas I might have to, in some small way, make the world a better place.

And then, discovering what you—my fellow bloggers—are passionate about.
What moves you, challenges you, or makes you want to tear your hair out and run from the building screaming.
So keep telling me your stories and sharing your photographs.
Share your passion. Share yourself.

That’s what connects the WordPress community, not simply what we ‘like’,
but what we are like.

Don’t you sometimes wish there were simple answers to life’s hard questions?

Sometimes there are.

One of those questions is ‘what does it take to be a good wife?’

Come on, you’ve had this discussion lots of times with girlfriends at Starbucks. What did you come up with?

Make love more often
Work out and keep your figure
Let him have the remote
Ask if he’d rather play golf Saturday than mow the lawn or go school shopping with the kids
Endure another business dinner with his boss, yes, the one you think is a primate
Spend less money on yourself
Get excited about the Sports car he wants to buy

Marriage can be heaven on earth and 10 minutes later you’re at DEFCON 1.

Most of us have figured out how to handle the good stuff; it’s when things get difficult that I needed a tool for damage control.

Years ago I found a Mission Statement, a single mantra to guide my words and actions toward my husband when I’d rather be selfish and mean.

Will this do good or harm to my husband and our relationship?

That’s not what you wanted to hear, right?

Let’s talk HGTV instead.
You’ve seen the shows like Property Brothers that feature a complete remodel.

Did you ever notice the tools? Some are for tearing down, for demolition, and others are constructive, for building.

When things get out of sync I only want constructive tools at the ready.

I can’t control my husband’s response, but I can decide in advance that I won’t, in the space of a few moments, damage something we’ve both been working a long time to build.

How do you handle the tough times and rough patches in your relationship?

She does him good and not harm for as long as she lives (Proverbs 31:12)

Keeping an EYE on Silas

What’s Wrong With This Picture?

A few days ago I came across a new definition for boy: noise with dirt on it.
I’m calling it the 2.0 version of snakes and snails and puppy dog tails.

The thing I like about the new definition is that it has a WARNING included.
Did you spot it?

When there is no noise associated with a boy then you can bet he’s into trouble.

Kids take on Superhero traits when they are doing something you’d rather they not do. Super-fast, Super-strong, and yikes—Super-destructive. Once Silas decided to check under the hood of the Mac the de-construction took less than 7 minutes.

Silas is smart. His Dad is scary smart and now we are seeing the early warning signs in his progeny.
But, let’s look at the bright sides of this, and there are several.

First, Silas wasn’t being bad, he was being curious. That’s something you NEVER want to discourage in a kid, or in anyone else.

Second, Apple makes great products and this was quickly repaired.

Third, the adults in his life have been alerted to his need to know How Things Work and went shopping for some new items to cultivate and encourage curiosity and discovery while minimizing collateral damage.

Don’t you love stories with happy endings?

The laptop, by the way, is no longer residing on the Kitchen table.
It now enjoys a Penthouse view in an undisclosed location.

Silas will have access again when he’s about 6 and learns to write code.

As for me, I’m curious about how to arrange, manipulate, and otherwise control the images I add to my posts.
Currently they just show up wherever they feel like it.

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