Tag Archives: life

We are all storytellers

“We are all storytellers, photojournalists of lives that are rich with tears, bruises, tenderness, strangeness and humor.  There’s nothing wrong with shooting smiles and holidays and rituals, but life isn’t a marketing campaign.  More interesting stuff is going on.  That’s your job as a photographer – to shoot the world as it is.  Remember that …

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The years teach us

“It is very strange that the years teach us patience – that the shorter our time, the greater our capacity for waiting.” ― Elizabeth Taylor (the novelist) One of the great blessings of having parents who live a long time is the ability to learn from them about how to handle what lies ahead.  As my siblings and …

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Deep roots

“The old that is strong does not wither.  Deep roots are not reached by the frost.” — J. R. R. Tolkien I quoted from this poem in an earlier post, but recently its timeless words have been on my mind again.  I was reminded of these particular lines by the daffodils in my yard. Daffodils …

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By the window

What life can compare to this? Sitting quietly by the window, I watch the leaves fall and the flowers bloom, As the seasons come and go.     — Hsueh-Tou Don’t you love sitting quietly by a window?  I don’t make enough time for it.  I always find it calming; the combination of sunlight (or moonlight) and …

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Questions of faith and love

“…although the historical arguments for Jesus’s bodily resurrection are truly strong, we must never suppose that they will do more than bring people to the questions faced by Thomas and Peter, the questions of faith and love. We cannot use a supposedly objective historical epistemology as the ultimate ground for the truth of Easter.  To …

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Faith Shines

            No coward soul is mine, No trembler in the world’s storm-troubled sphere:               I see Heaven’s glories shine, And faith shines equal, arming me from fear.                                   …

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A happier state of mind

“To be interested in the changing seasons is a happier state of mind than to be hopelessly in love with spring.” — George Santayana Here in the northern hemisphere, we are enjoying the colors of the foliage and the cooling weather.  Meanwhile, our neighbors south of the equator are enjoying the end of winter and …

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The joyful simplicities

“Year by year the complexities of this spinning world grow more and more bewildering, and so each year we need all the more to seek peace and comfort in the joyful simplicities.” — Woman’s Home Companion, 1935 “With just a little use of attention, good experiences are available to you throughout the day. They’re like …

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The past is beautiful

“I can only note that the past is beautiful because one never realises an emotion at the time. It expands later, and thus we don’t have complete emotions about the present, only about the past.” ― Virginia Woolf Reading this quote, I can only wish that Woolf had thought of these words before she took …

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The right way

“If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden.” ― Frances Hodgson Burnett Recently on an early evening walk, I was basking in the new cool of September, and as I approached our Alexandria townhome I looked over the expanse behind it and felt almost as if I …

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Be the navigator

“Time flies.  It’s up to you to be the navigator.” — Robert Orben Though our circumstances differ, and some of us have more opportunities than others, each of us has the power to determine how we will react to the externals we cannot control.  We plan our lives much as a navigator plots a course …

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What counts

“What counts is what you learn after you know it all.” – Earl Weaver Sometimes it seems that life is one long series of reaching the top of one hill only to start all over again at the bottom of another one.  After awhile, we realize that we never stop needing to learn.  Most of …

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I sit and watch

Oh! ’twas very sad and lonely When I found myself the only Population on this cultivated shore; But I’ve made a little tavern In a rocky little cavern, And I sit and watch for people at the door… Then we gather as we travel, Bits of moss and dirty gravel, And we chip off little …

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Those moments

“What I regret most in my life are failures of kindness. Those moments when another human being was there, in front of me, suffering and I responded…sensibly. Reservedly. Mildly.”   –  George Saunders There’s nothing at all wrong with acting in ways that are sensible, reserved, and mild.  But there are times when such demeanor …

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Tickled silly

“Optimist: someone who isn’t sure whether life is a tragedy or a comedy but is tickled silly just to be in the play.” — Robert Brault One year ago I wrote about my precious Aunt Peggy, who has survived things that might have left less optimistic people feeling bitter.  Peggy is one of those people …

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Odd corners

“It is not on mountaintops that the charm of life lies, for we are seldom there. It is in nooks and vales, in odd corners, that life is spent and finds its settings.” — Wallace Nutting Your summer vacation might now be a pleasant memory, or maybe you didn’t even take one.  In any case, …

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More like rivers

“At the time I did not know that stories of life are often more like rivers than books.” ― Norman Maclean Jeff and I spent the first four years of our marriage in Memphis, Tennessee, while he attended dental school there.  I loved the city for many reasons, but what I loved most was the …

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Along the road

“I regret less the road not taken than my all-fired hurry along the road I took.” — Robert Brault As hard as it might be for some of us to believe this, if we live long enough we will look back on this particular time in our lives and miss at least a few of …

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Constantly and visibly

“Life, now, was unfolding before me, constantly and visibly, like the flowers of summer that drop fanlike petals on eternal soil.” — Roman Payne I don’t know whether it’s because I’m less than three years from 60, or because of the many life-and-death issues my family has faced in the past 18 months, but I …

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No way to say no

And it’s going to be a day There is really no way to say no to the morning Yes it’s going to be a day There is really nothing left to say But come on morning    — Dan Fogelberg This verse is from  “To the Morning,” the first Dan Fogelberg song I ever loved, recorded …

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An extra

“Our highest assurance of the goodness of Providence seems to me to rest in the flowers. All other things, our powers, our desires, our food, are all really necessary for our existence in the first instance. But this rose is an extra. Its smell and its color are an embellishment of life, not a condition …

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Beautiful and terrible

“Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don’t be afraid.” ― Frederick Buechner That’s it in a nutshell, isn’t it? It might seem contradictory to affirm that terrible things will happen, yet advise against fear.  But I think there is a difference between feeling fear occasionally (or even often) versus being afraid.  …

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Age has no reality

“Age has no reality except in the physical world. The essence of a human being is resistant to the passage of time. Our inner lives are eternal, which is to say that our spirits remain as youthful and vigorous as when we were in full bloom.” — Gabriel Garcí­a Márquez Ah, but the physical world …

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If you removed the rocks

“The brook would lose its song if you removed the rocks.” — Fred Beck I’ve written about flowers here too many times to remember, but today I’d like to acknowledge that life is also enhanced by those objects and events that are less flashy, less exciting, and maybe somewhat difficult. What, after all, would be …

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Mere living

“How good is man’s life, the mere living!” — Robert Browning Can we really comprehend the meaning of the phrase “mere living?” If so, probably never as clearly as when we come face to face with the reality of our life’s inevitable end, whether soon or years from now.  I wish for you today a …

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