A little glimpse of Joy

April hath put a spirit of youth in everything.
~William Shakespeare

I think I came across my first Joy encounter last week. Of course, there’s been some moments of happiness, but like we discussed earlier this year, Happy is not necessarily the same feeling as Joy.

This Joy encounter came from an unexpected source….the cancer radiation treatment center. Yes, you heard correctly.

Entrepreneur was scheduled for three radiation treatments last week. We drove to the hospital entrance for radiation patients with more than a little anxiety building about how these procedures could end up. Radiating the brain….the stuff of which anxiety is made.

It was a dreary, chilly, spring day with on and off rain showers. Much like our frame of mind. But as we drove into the private parking area for radiation patients, this is what greeted us.

A sea of yellow daffodils planted between the reserved parking spaces and entrance.

I felt my heart lift as soon as I saw them. Of course, they didn’t negate the harsh reality of what was about to happen inside, but for a brief moment, I was caught up in the beauty of the moment. I thought of all the hours it must have taken to plant these bulbs last Autumn. I thought what a wonderful gift to those experiencing the challenging darkness of cancer.

And, I noticed some of these splendid blossoms had been mercilessly beat down onto the ground, unable to hold up against the spring storms. What a shame, I thought. So, I rescued them to live in vases in my home. There is some poetic justice in this, right? 🙂

Joy. It can surprise us in the strangest of places.

For happiness one needs security, but joy can spring like a flower even from the cliffs of despair.
~Anne Morrow Lindbergh



songography-beautiful dayIt’s a beautiful day
Don’t let it get away
It’s a beautiful day
~Beautiful Day by U2

If spring is serious where you are, I hope those beautiful days let you get away and enjoy some fun activities. If spring has eluded you, I wish you patience and more hot chocolate laced with Bailey’s Irish Cream to help tide you over until summer.

Playing along with Kathy and those who love Songography

Quotography: Language

Quotography-languageTexture by Kim Klassen: simple magic, 50% soft light

Flowers are the music of the ground. From earth’s lips spoken without sound. ~Edwin Curran, “Flowers”

I guess this quote could be considered the opposite of spoken “language.” But, sometimes the absence of spoken words is no less profound.

Playing Quotography with Kelley at The Road Goes Ever On

A daffy palette of color

daffodil palette72
Just playin’ today with some pretty palette templates. Yes, I have tons of work to do, but my muse has kidnapped my attention span.

Spend time every day listening to what your muse is trying to tell you.
~St. Bartholomew, one of the twelve apostles, 1st century AD

See, it’s almost biblical to be distracted.

Part of my problem is the sun is shining today and it’s suppose to be near 60F…and I’m stuck at a desk in the office. So, I’m bringing a bit of sunshine inside today.

Hope your day is sunshiny too. 🙂

Bloom Where You're Planted

back daff bloom72
Bloom where you’re planted.
~commonly attributed to Mary Engelbreit

In other words, succeed in spite of your circumstances. Make the best of whatever situation you’re in and “bloom” your little heart out.

But it’s not that easy, is it?

Just as in nature, people don’t always bloom where they’re “planted.” Oh sure, some people are like weeds and can grow successfully anywhere they land. But most of us are not that resilient.

Most of us need the garden prep that comes along with nurturing full potential. And knowing what plants grow in specific conditions is helpful. Just as you wouldn’t grow impatient flowers in full sun on the west side of a house, you wouldn’t necessarily expect a person “planted” in an equally hostile environment to grow and develop into anything beautiful. Sure, anything is possible, but it’s not probable.

Successful people need some garden prep to produce and live up to their potential. Consider every one of us a seedling. When we’re planted in rich soil, watered and put in the right kind of light, we grow. When we’re protected from harsh elements, we grow…most of the time into healthy little plants that can be transplanted successfully, and have a better chance of survival when less than perfect weather arises.

So what does that look like in our lives?

Security and Stability
Who among us can honestly say they love instability? The truth is we don’t thrive when our environment is unstable. As children, we crave the security of a nurturing, stable family, and the feeling that the people in our lives will always be there to care for us.

Permission to Explore
Have you ever noticed how some infants crawl all over the place while others cling to mom or dad? The ones who explore seem to know they can take risks, knowing they have secure home base in which to return. The timid ones aren’t sure whether it’s safe to venture out or not; unsure there will be someone there to attend to their needs if they get in trouble.

Healthy Living
Strong, healthy bodies tend to be more resilient, physically as well as psychologically. When our bodies are given healthy food and proper medical preventative measures, we’re better equipped to handle the challenges of living in a dirty world. Clean air, water and sunshine enhance healthy living just like it enhances plant growth.

Coping Skills
Since life is not always a bed of roses, it’s best if we are taught how to cope with the thorns. It’s necessary we learn that effort and motivation is needed in order for us to achieve goals. But we all need to first be taught confidence that our goals can be achieved. And that happens at a very early age. Problem-solving skills help ensure we won’t crumble under pressure and can accept and learn from set-backs while reaching for our goals. And along with coping skills is the ability to lose as well as win gracefully.

All of the above garden prep is great, but there’s one more that helps ensure we grow into beautiful beings. And that is a realization that we’re all connected.  Showing empathy, sympathy, genuine concern and love for living things is part of what makes us human. Knowing our place in God’s plan can provide strength and resilience beyond measure. Think of it as the fertilizer that allows us to bloom as beautifully as possible.

May you all be planted and bloom beautifully.

Linking up with Quotography

Is it Spring when temps are 85 degrees?

The rest of the week promises to be more seasonal with temps in the 60s here in Middle Missouri. I have to say, temps upwards of 90 degrees in March and April are tooooo hot. While Entrepreneur is loving it, I really like that slow ease into the humidity of summer.

Since Spring came so early this year, most of the blossoms have now been blown away. Here’s some remnants before the winds got a hold of them. These are for Carol over at Wanderings of an Elusive Mind because she has yet to enjoy Spring in her (northern) neck of the woods!

I heart Spring. Can you see it?

Yes, I looked incredibly funny on the ground trying to get behind this one.

Oh, you knew a color palette was coming. Which room should this be?

And then, there’s times when I’m awfully thankful I have a zoom lens. Contrary to what it looks like, this is not a bumblebee. It’s a carpenter bee and not very aggressive. We’ve had one patrolling the front door for about 5 years. They aren’t very good watchdogs for trespassers.


Come to think of it, neither is this….unless you’re a squirrel or a deer.

Happy Spring to all of you!


Just a little longer

Monday’s forecast was for a couple inches of snow with temps warming into the upper 30s (Fahrenheit) by noon; rain the rest of the day. The snow stayed all. day. long. Six inches of snow, officially. By Wednesday, we were in shirtsleeves and the 60s. Today, St. Patrick’s Day, it’s pushing 75. So, I’m posting this in honor of celebrating the Green!

Spring is coming.

I can see it.