Our visit to Yosemite, Lake Tahoe, and Reno has been a vacation of endurance.
Arriving in Yosemite National Park to visit our son and his fiancé, firefighters used natural barriers of granite walls to help contain 4,500 fire affected acres. Yosemite has backbone!
Upon entering the employee housing in Yosemite National Park, there are signs in the windows stating, “Don’t take Yosemite for Granite.” From our land of volcanoes to the land of granite peaks and mountains, we bask in the wonder of it all. Our son, Cory, is an interpretive naturalist in Yosemite.
Every time we visit this amazing park, we are so very grateful that our family lives in truly awe inspiring places where the world greets us at our doorsteps. Join me in some jaw dropping scenes from Yosemite.
Wait, don’t leave yet! Photos ahead.
“Do we not each dream of dreams? Do we not dance on the notes of lost
memories? Then are we not each dreamers of tomorrow and yesterday, since dreams
play when time is askew? Are we not all adrift in the constant sea of trial and when all is done, do we not all yearn for ships to carry us home?”
― Nathan Reese Maher
I spent the weekend abandoned on Corn Island, Nicaragua. Adrift in my dreams…cast away upon the sea…unrestrained…uninhibited…empty of all thoughts except for…ONE LOVE…
More abandoned.Keep reading.
“Life is short. If you doubt me, ask a butterfly. Their average life span is a mere five to fourteen days.” ~ Ellen DeGeneres
I made my bucket list when I was 21 years old. I had a Nothing Journal ( if you are a Baby Boomer, you may remember the Nothing Journals) where I would sketch my longings and desires. Included in my sketches:
1. A cabin in the woods….check
2. A loving heart…check
3. A marriage certificate…check (We’ve been married
37 38 years)
4. A backpacking trip and travel, travel, travel…check
5. An advanced degree…check
7. A peace sign…still working on that one
8. A tropical island…check
9. A Datsun Z…never got that car
10. A St. Bernard…never got a St.Bernard either, but I’ve had numerous pets
My bucket list included living without regrets, always taking a second chance, and learning to forgive. Now that I’m officially retired, my bucket list is shorter, and so is life.
Below are two highlights I crossed off my bucket list.
Olive Ridley Turtle Arribada This Olive Ridley is burying her eggs in a downpour.
Monarch butterfly sanctuary near Ocampo, Mexico.
If you were a butterfly for a day, what would you put on your bucket list?
“Make your lives a masterpiece, you only get one canvas.”
― E.A. Bucchianeri, Brushstrokes of a Gadfly
My life’s masterpiece is a colorful mixture of paints and a work in progress.
My heart is my paintbrush. The entire universe is my canvas.
I am learning to let go…to defy gravity…to dare ecstasy…to fly by the seat of my paint covered pants.
I want to blaze my own trail… to transcend what people tell me is impossible…to learn from my failures.
Each of us creates a unique signature of our lives.
One small part of the masterpiece of my life hangs above my kitchen wall, created with radical curiosities, a loving friend, laughter, contemplation, and tranquility in our troubled world.
What does the masterpiece of your life look like behind the scenes?
I’ve carried a purse since I was five year’s old. Although the contents change, they symbolize where I am in my life. Since I have a constant companion, I thought I’d share the contents of my traveling purse and explain my purse psyche.
I am a frequent international traveler. Presently, I’m in the states and the contents of my purse are spread out on my mother’s dining room table. I’m baring it all in this post, hopefully enabling you to understand my traveling philosophy and delve into my purse psyche.
1. First, I carry everything in a shoulder bag given to me by a friend who frequents the Salvation Army stores. It’s free…it’s purple ( one of my favorite colors)..and it’s compact.
Notice the little Canadian duck pin on the front? I prefer to let foreigners think I’m Canadian. I won’t go into it here, but let’s just say, that little pin has opened doors for me in some Latin American countries.
2. Salvation Army tissues fit neatly into the front mesh pocket. They came with the purse and are ever so handy. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been without toilet paper when I’m traveling.
3. My used 3S/3G iPhone. I just bought an Otterbox Defender for it in the states because Nicaragua and the tropics are hard on phones. It is like a mini-computer and I have lots of cool traveling apps on it.
4. Just a little money. I never carry too much money in my purse when I travel. I have a few dollars for tips, and I have a little stash of my cordobas for my return trip to Nicaragua.
5. Of course, I need my passport and my Nicaraguan residency card ( When I return, I don’t have to pay the entrance fee of $10 in customs.)
6. My wallet has a few things in it, but my one credit card is hidden in another place in my purse. I won’t say where, but I can get very creative. The wallet is over 10 years old. I bought it at the Unclaimed Baggage Center in Alabama. That place is incredible.
7. I always carry a toothbrush. I couldn’t find travel size toothpaste in Nicaragua, and it’s a hassle to carry any liquids regardless of the size on a plane.
8. Under my toothbrush, I have two very important papers. One is a tracing of Julio’s foot. He wanted me to buy him some running shoes, but he didn’t know his size. I started compiling the other list months before my trip to the states. It contains all of the things I want to buy, or things my friends want me to buy while I’m in the states. Hard or nearly impossible to find things such as; pickling spices, cheap solar lights, a hummingbird feeder, raw peanuts, horseradish, pretzels ( I have a lot of food items on my list), and an assortment of little tools from Lowes.
9. My cheap knock-off sunglasses, and prescription glasses’ carrying case. I usually wear my glasses because it is easier than digging around for them when I have to read something (the only reason I need glasses, but when traveling, there is always something to read). I also discovered that my empty carrying case can hold little things that most airlines don’t want you to take. My little secret, but they are never detected when they run my purse through the x-ray machine. Nothing dangerous, of course.
10. My mother always told me to either wear clean underwear, or take a clean pair along with me and I’ve never broken the habit. :-)
11. I can’t forget the pen. I confess, I am a pen stealer. This pen came from the director of House Hunter’s International when they came to film us for 5 days in May. No wait! I’m wrong. He kept reminding me to return his pen. I thought he would forget about it, but NO, so I begrudgingly returned it. Hmmm…I must have stolen this one from the airline personnel at the check-in counter.
So, there you have it…the contents of my constant companion. I think my purse psyche would show that I lead a simple, cheap life and I’m not very fashion conscious.
Now, when I get my travel vest loaded with 40 pounds of children’s books, and my zebra print backpack stuffed with my MacBook, Kindle, and other electronics…I am a sight to behold as I waddle through the airports. What’s in your purse today?
“Throw your dreams into space like a kite, and you do not know what it will bring back, a new life, a new friend, a new love, a new country.” ~ Anais Nin
When one yearns to run away..to slam the door on reality…to shut out the stresses of everyday life…
Go fly a kite…throw your dreams into space and await the wondrous surprises.
“Imagination is the highest kite one can fly”~ Lauren Bacall
“True courage is like a kite; a contrary wind raises it higher” ~
The optimist pleasantly ponders how high his kite will fly; the pessimist woefully wonders how soon his kite will fall.
~ William Arthur Ward