I've been Doodling...

I love spring flowers.  I also love flowers I've received as gifts.  Today's photos are a combination of shots I took around my yard.  I'm trying different aperture settings, still messing around with light and shadows, and playing around with the bells and whistles on my camera.  

The first two photos are of a desert hibiscus bud taken early in the morning.  The hibiscus blooms prolifically, every day new buds emerge from the pod and a few hours later the buds open and sing their glory all day. Then at night they close and have dropped to the ground by the next morning when the process begins again.  

The next two photos were taken a few hours later when the buds opened.  

I am also fascinated with the way roses go through their life cycle.  So, I followed one of my Tiffany roses as it budded, bloomed, and died.  By the way, if you have never smelled a Tiffany rose, you should.  They are the most vibrant scented of any rose I've ever had.  A single bloom brought into the house fills the room with its aroma.  

 Finally, my oldest son gave me a dozen creamy white roses for Mother's Day, and they have opened into a glorious bouquet.  The opening of one stem in particular takes my breath away, and I captured the unfolding to share with you.  

Last week was full of wonderfulness.  

I had lunch with my favorite uncle.

My favorite daughter graduated from college.  Here she is with my favorite two sons.

And I took a picture of a rose in my back yard that I think is the best photo I've ever taken.  

Extended family, children, art...

Life is sweet!

More early spring in my backyard. I shot these during the golden hour, as the sun was about to slip behind the housetops, and experimented with light and shadow as it illuminated and obscured parts of the rose bushes to reveal hidden beauty.

I read a lot of blogs.  Some I skim through, some I laugh through, some I bookmark and file away as a reference or resource for my writing.  Others that I read cause me to weep because of the poignant vulnerability the writer has entrusted to his/her readers. 

 They have a way of stringing the words together in such thoughtful honesty and profundity that I often cannot leave a comment for a day or two; sometimes it's weeks before I am able to sort out the plethora of my reactions to their thoughts.  Regardless of how long it takes, their thoughts open my mind, touch my soul, and allow me to mature as a person.  

Yesterday a blogger wrote about a painful and abusive incident that occurred in his teenage years at the place he worked.  Though early in his teen years he was devouring philosophy, excelling in advanced mathematics at school, and was generally being the brilliant person he has always been, at work he was labeled an imbecile.     

His post made me cry.  I've been there myself - suffering at the hands of jerks who choose to try to utterly destroy a smart or talented person rather than deal with their own insecurities.  I call this type of behavior "leveling."  It's when a person perceives something lacking in their own life, and therefore are compelled to diminish that very gift when they see it in another.  It levels the field.  It's as though they are saying, "If I can't have it or am not willing to work for it, then nobody else gets to have it either."  

Leveling is wrong no matter what the motivation or situation.  I see it happening all the time not only in work situations, but also in families.  

Instead of bringing someone else down to your level, I think it is much better to spend your life energy finding your own dream, putting your nose to the grindstone, and become your very best and don't worry about what others are doing.  

Charles M. Schultz, creator of the Peanuts cartoons, once said, "There is no greater burden than great potential." 

Isn't that the truth???


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