Thursday, July 28, 2016

Selfies

Technology has certainly changed the way we think, talk, and act in this the 21st century. I suppose that's been true in every century, but this is the one I'm in now, so I'm only addressing this one.

A few weeks ago I decided I needed to figure out how to take a 'selfie". Now this whole idea of taking a photo of yourself is pretty new, right? I mean I grew up in a time when you put film in a camera, took photos (usually over the course of months because film and processing was expensive so we only took important pictures!), then dropped it off at the photo shop to be turned into actual photographs that we could see. If we wanted more copies, the negatives needed to go in and copies could be made. You had to save those negatives forever if you cared about the photos, and I still have envelopes full of negatives in my photo storage cabinet today. Nothing was worse than picking up your pictures, get into the car to rip open the package, only to to find they were all dark, or somehow ruined because of bad film or camera malfunction.

Anyway, today taking photos is as easy as picking up your cell phone. And what with needing pictures of myself for various online profiles and websites, taking selfies has become a bit of an art form, albeit not one I'd really dabbled in yet. But now that I'm living alone, it seemed something I needed to learn to do.

My first attempt was pretty bad. Not one of the eight shots were good enough to publish. I mean, they may have looked exactly like me, I don't know, but they sure didn't look like the person I perceived myself to be!

Second try was a little better. I learned to move to where the light was better, and where to look so my eyes were facing the right direction.

By the third attempt I was getting pretty good at it and finally I had a photo I could put up on my Facebook page that is adequate. My feeling is that the perfect profile photo is one that people look at and say "oh wow-she looks pretty good!" As opposed to one that makes them say "oh dear-she really has let herself go, hasn't she?"

I think another few tries and I should have this down.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Readers

I love discovering that there are actually people out there who read my blogs. I mean, on the one hand I am sometimes startled by it, because I really write for my own enjoyment and don't think what I have to say is worthy of anyone else's interest, but on the other I'm glad to know that there are folks who think I have something to say. Always surprising and always interesting to me.

I recently had two people express concern about how "dark" my blogs were becoming but I always write about where I am and what's on my mind so it stands to reason that everyone has "dark" moments in this world. My life isn't perfect - far from it - and I certainly never wanted to present that in my writing. My life, like all others, has sad, mournful times and also wonderful high times. It's just real and I don't want to present it as anything else. However, I have tried to lighten things up a bit since then because truly its not my intent to depress anyone!

Someone else just pointed out that I posted the same blog three times. Actually I don't think I did it - I think it was a glitch in the program which was acting a bit odd yesterday. But nevertheless, I was glad someone noticed and took the time to mention it so I could correct things.

Blogging is truly a solitary adventure. Its done in private, alone in my house, with only my own thoughts to express. But as the internet goes, and its both good and bad, suddenly someone is reading my thoughts over in Europe somewhere. In face I have a pretty loyal follower in Russia.

Who'd a thot?

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Hot hot hot

So the heat wave continues here on the East End but boy is it not beautiful out there! It seems that every garden is bursting with color and the lawns are as green as they'll ever be. Once August hits we'll be seeing more brown spots and wilted foliage so this, right now, is perfect.

I love taking the back roads, as always, not only for the respite from the traffic on 27 but also for the scenery. The farm fields, what's left of them, are lush and full and the farm stands are a sight for sore eyes, with colorful buckets of sunflowers and veggies bursting from their shelves. Watermelons, beans, corn, tomatoes, they're all there now, enticing the passing hordes to stop and enjoy. Its an abundance of glory for all the senses, smell, taste, sight, touch - there's nothing that doesn't get tickled with a stop along the way for something to carry home.

The heat may be oppressive this week but the joys are still around to be taken in and savored as the bounty of summer.  And I do just that. It's salve for a broken spirit and right now the very best medicine in the world.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Monday Monday

So here it is Monday again and my charges left not too long ago. It was certainly a long day with the heat so high and the humidity off the scale and three toddlers running around. But Mondays are, as always, full of promise. They are new beginnings, brand new weeks, blank slates to write on and fill out.

I love Mondays. I know some people don't agree because they don't like the fact that the entire week is ahead of them, but I prefer to think of Monday's as brand new babies, fresh and new and ready for life.

This was a difficult one as Monday's go. I'm tired and worn and thinking about bed despite the fact that it's only 7:45. But this was the start of my brand new week, and I'm not wishing it away. I'm looking forward to the things yet to come.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Heat wave

We are in our second or third heat wave of the summer and I have to say none of them have really bothered me too much. I think the fact that we finally had an air conditioner built into the wall of our bedroom a few years ago has made all the difference for me.

The daylight hours are not so bad as long as I'm not busy around the house. I can read or work at my computer comfortably enough because there is nearly always a nice breeze going through my rooms with the open field across the street and lots of big windows all around. It's only those times where we have manual labor to do that make things uncomfortable. But the nights have always been the challenge. Those hot days with high humidity just really challenge me and I don't sleep well at all. There's something about sheets that feel wet and no way to cool off that just isn't very conducive to a good night of shut-eye, and lack of sleep certainly makes me grumpy.

So the a/c in the bedroom has made all the difference. I am sleeping well despite the heat and I'm getting lots of reading done during the daylight. All in all not a bad thing.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Beauty

I think the easiest way to lift your spirits is the one that's free and simple: look around.

As I gaze out my window here in East Hampton I'm seeing a world full of beauty and its mine for the taking. There's a beautiful breeze, the windows are open and the air is fresh, and the world is my oyster. Well, sort of anyway. There's plenty to be thankful for right here in my own house, my own backyard, my own little town.

Last night I worked a party up at the historic Mulford Farm. The weather was superb, the setting perfection, and I rather enjoyed all the beautiful people who lined up at the gate to get into this summer fundraising party. It seemed to be the place to be! I didn't get farther than the gate since that's where I was working, but still it was a great night and I loved being there.

I know that I am blessed to live here in beautiful East Hampton. I have family all around me, great friends who watch out for me, and a lovely house to live in. Life is good regardless of the bad things that come along. And I will keep reminding myself of that.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Reflection

I've had plenty of time for reflection this week. With my car out of service for the third day, and probably a week ahead without it, I have lots of opportunity to read, think, and contemplate life and all that goes along with it right now. And that's a good thing.

I have so many blessings in my life that I cannot complain about the bad things. There are always people who are worse off, who are hungry, sick, living in terrible conditions. I know this and I don't take my life for granted. I have a wonderful family, amazing children, siblings I love, nieces and nephews who are here for me if I need them, and so many supportive friends I sometimes am embarrassed by the riches. I treasure all those things and when difficult days come, these are the things that make life worth the living for me. In the grand scheme of things, these are the reasons I want to live life to the fullest.

Reflection helps us to keep our perspective during the difficult days that come to all of us. And despite the fact that I've been home most all of the past three days, the television has barely been on. I am spending this bonus period reading, googling, praying, meditating, and just being with myself in thought, thinking and wondering about the future.

Of course none of us knows what the future holds-I certainly know that because if you'd asked me a month ago if I would be where I am at this moment I would never have imagined it. But I do think that my future looks pretty bright. And right now, that's enough to hold onto.