This year on Christmas Eve me and three of my siblings ventured out to Longwood Gardens instead of attending church services, and I have to say, the vastness of the outdoors, the artistic splendor of the displays, the quiet reflection of the snow, and the exhilaration of the cold, made the whole experience very holy and very festive!
I'm so glad we decided to change things up. At times we even separated and ventured down a path or two alone allowing for some tranquility and then through the magic of cell phones, would meet back up. My favorite part of attending church on Christmas Eve is singing. My mediocre voice miraculously becomes pleasing when singing hymns and carols. And such was the case at Longwood Gardens where we were invited into the Conservatory to sing along with their historic organ and organist.
Best of all, I got some really good nighttime shots on my camera.
Here's a link to the complete album on facebook
Sunday, December 30, 2012
Saturday, December 1, 2012
I'm a member of SITS ( a group of 40,000 women bloggers dedicated to supporting one another by leaving comments & learning about blogging). Each week SITS hosts Saturday Sharefest, which allows you to post a link to your favorite blog post from the week, and in turn, you are supposed to read the blog of the person who posted before you and be sure to leave a comment.
It seems like a good way to get traffic to your blog and maybe pick up some new readers (I normally submit a post from Tinsel & Tine). But it hasn't been very effective for me. I do follow the rules and read someone's blog post from the site and make a comment, even if it's not the last person who posted before me. But I often find my blog still devoid of comments at the end of my Saturday:(
Anyway, the blog I read today is called Singing Through The Rain and she wrote a post called "The Secret Life of a Girl With Anxiety.
I admired her courage in writing the post and found myself responding with more that just the perfunctory "Stopping by from SITS - Nice blog". Here's my comment:
A very moving and brave post. I'm glad you were able to write it. Anxiety is so very difficult to deal with. I've suffered from panic attacks too and in the beginning truly believed I was having a stroke or heart attack. The mind/body/spirit connection is an actuality that many people scoff at as new age crap, but in actuality, if one's mind and spirit are in turmoil, the body reacts in debilitating ways.I admire those who suffer with anxiety but are still able to get married and have children. I feel like my problems with anxiety have in some ways prevented me from having a relationship that could lead to marriage. I try to alleviate my stress and fears through meditation, acupuncture, exercise, and a magnesium complex I get from Whole Foods called Calm, but there are times I feel I should be taking something stronger.I am thankful my anxiety is not just general and across the board or all the time or has an unknown cause. Mine has always been centered around lifestyle - desperately seeking a certain lifestyle. It really kicked in at age 38 when I realized my life was no where near being where I thought I'd be at that age, with no knowledge, ability or plan of how to catch up to my age and live out my dreams.
I'm constantly working on acceptance and trying to enjoy the present (see blog post from July), but it's very hard.
Visiting from SITS