Day: 12/17/2012

Introducing my new Olympus Resource Page

Marilyn Armstrong:

Thank you! This is so very useful to other Olympus owners and those who are thinking about it.

Originally posted on atmtx photo blog:

My first one is the Olympus Micro 4/3 Resource Page, You can access it from the section on the right under Gear. This page references my best articles on the Olympus micro 4/3 and explains why I like them so much. I think it will help orient new readers. Please tell me what you think.

I’ll add more pages over time. There will be more on gear but also sections for travel and events. Instead of being just a collection of posts, when completed, the pages will add structure to my blog.

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“VERY INSPIRING BLOGGER AWARD” – My Cup Overfloweth

Very Inspiring Blogger award

Tonight I went with my husband to Sutton’s Congregational Church. They were having their Christmas Concert and Garry and a friend of his had produced a documentary about the concert … how it was put together, how the choir family pulled together to create this every year. It’s playing now on local cable stations around the valley.

75-Choir_HP-17

This was the official Christmas concert performance. Considering how trying these past few days have been, a trip to church to hear Christmas carols was exactly what we needed. It was a nasty night. When we got out of the car at the church, the entire parking lot was covered with black ice. It was drizzling, but just cold enough so that the drizzle froze instantly on all the paved surfaces. I barely made it the 20 or so feet from the car to the church without falling and the minister did fall on her way out of her house.

The concert was lovely. Good singing, lots of smiles. And I took pictures and by the time we left the church, it had warmed up just enough so that the ice was gone. As the minister said, we had been blessed.

And now, blessed again by yet another gift of a Very Inspiring Blogger Award, courtesy of  Dear Kitty. Some blog: On animals, peace and war, science, social justice, women’s issues, arts, and much more. This is a woman whose causes are my causes, whose passions are also mine, a woman who I greatly admire. I am touched and honored to receive this award from her.

I often don’t feel particularly inspiring, but inspiration comes from many sources. I am glad that my words and pictures … and the other posts I find and reblog because I think they are important and worthwhile … provide inspiration for others. It makes the effort worth it to know that there are people “out there” who read the words and it means something to them.

That somehow I’ve gone in less than a year from “who’s that?” to getting more awards than I imagined possible leaves me a little breathless. Awards are always given by people who do not know us intimately. I am sure if people knew me better, they’d be incapable of giving me an award because they would, as my old friends do, remember that time I had one Mai Tai too many, fainted dead away and had to be dragged home by three big guys in a fork lift. People who know you very well may love you, but they don’t give you awards. Moreover, anyone who met my second husband or first boyfriend would never find me inspiring, although I might serve as a cautionary tale … if that could be considered inspirational.

The difference between something that gives me a migraine and something that inspires me can be razor-thin. This last week, full of tragedy and madness has been inspiring … but not in a way I would ever have chosen. It’s been a grim week. I only hope that from this something positive will emerge. I guess we’ll see how long people remember and if all the talk turns into some kind of action.

Being told that I’m an inspiration is an inspiration. It means I have not become irrelevant and maybe the experience of a lifetime is was not entirely wasted. All of you in my blogging world inspire me. I read your stories and poems. I admire your photographs and art. You change my view of the world, the way I do things, give me food for thought. If I do a bit of the same for you, I am glad.

Keith and St. Nick

Happy whatever you celebrate. Celebrate everything, why don’t you? Rejoice that you are alive, because you have a friend, a roof over your head, and maybe something to eat. Forget for a while all the problems and craziness because it won’t forget you … it’ll be there, waiting, when the party’s over. Love you all!!

The rules of this award are:

  • Display the award logo on your blog
  • Link back to the person who nominated you.
  • Tell us at least seven things about yourself that you would like to share.
  • Nominate other bloggers for this award and link to them. I am not going to set a specific number. I know how difficult it can be to keep coming up with nominees and rather than burden you all with having to find everyone all at once, you can keep a few awards in your back pocket and pass them along when the time is right. The holidays are upon us all, so please don’t feel pressured to push beyond your comfort zone.
  • Notify your chosen bloggers of their nomination and the award’s requirements.

Seven things about myself that I haven’t explicitly said before (at least not where anyone could hear me) are:

  1. I was a music major in college, then finally graduated as a drama/broadcast dual major. I would have stayed for a third major in social science, but they told me I had to graduate.
  2. My favorite movies are comedies. I love to laugh.
  3. I have owned so many cats and dogs that I really can’t remember all of them any more.
  4. I’m a good cook, but after more than 40 years of dishing up meals, I’m very happy to eat other people’s cooking.
  5. If the mother ship comes and offers me a ride, I’m outta here.
  6. I learned to read in about two hours when I was five.
  7. I believe that anyone could write well if they would just remember that writing is just talking through your fingers. Good writing should sound as natural as speech. Most people try too hard; others don’t try hard enough.

My nominees (the envelope please):

  • Lust and Rum: New York, thy name’s “Delirium” — because I grew up in New York and  Anton Brookes’ photography and commentary reminds me that I still love it. His pictures are touching, evocative, the kind of photojournalism you rarely see any more.
  • Wessays – by my old friend Wes Richards whose writing is so good  that every time I read one of his posts, I immediately feel inadequate.
  • Awakenings: Awakenings from Then ’til Now allows you to Embrace Your Past, Empower the Present, Enrich Your Future. Because Sharla inspires me every day in more ways than I can count.

For all of you to whom I’ve already give awards, know you are likely going to get more. I like you, I like your websites, your thoughts, your pictures, you opinions … so you’ll have to cope with getting a few awards now and again. There are worse fates!

Christmas Concert – The Congregational Church Choirs

Life does not make sense. It never did.

Last night I had a series of Technicolor dreams that finally got me out of bed much earlier I intended. I have dreams that don’t quite reach the threshold of nightmares, but are nonetheless disturbing and vivid. They are also persistent, refusing to go away even after I wake up, get up, get something to drink, and go back to bed. The dream is still there, demanding attention.

Sometimes I have dreams which don’t seem to have anything to do with me, as if I’m having someone else’s dreams.

In this one, I was a small homosexual man being attacked by two large, powerful men. I watched this dream as a third person. I wasn’t in it, exactly. More like I was witnessing it, but I could still feel the terror of the young man. When I finally gave up and got out of bed for the day, I was begging them not to hurt me and as far as it went, was succeeding.

I am not a man nor a homosexual. How could it be my dream? The main character didn’t look like me or anyone else I know. The two men who were threatening the me-not-me were unfamiliar too. As far as I can tell, I have never met either of them. One was very tall, maybe a football or basketball size semi giant, the other normal height, but brawny. Both relatively young, maybe in their thirties. Both white. It was scary. And vaguely depressing. For whatever reason, when I got up, I knew my dream had been telling me that life doesn’t make sense.

I thought, briefly, that life used to make sense … and then I rethought my thought. “No, it didn’t. Life has never made any sense.”

When I was young, I was busy. Raising kids, Working. Taking care of a house.  I had goals and plans. But the goals and plans were inventions, so any meaning they had was whatever I put there.

The family

Get a better job, plan a vacation. Fix the kitchen. Plant bulbs in the garden. Get a bigger house. I moved from goal to goal, and when I accomplished one thing, I made a new plan.

What this did was give me a direction so I didn’t run in circles.

It turns out that life is its own meaning. Run fast, run slow, or don’t run … you end up where you were supposed to be. We make our passage from birth to death. We do good along the way … or not. It’s fortunate that goodness is its own reward since it pays so poorly.

We can enjoy the journey, find it fulfilling, frustrating, frightening or enlightening. If, when we are done with the busy years of work and family, we look back and know we followed our conscience and mostly were the best selves we could be, that’s meaning and probably, as good as it gets.

Younger people think retired folks must be bored or depressed because we don’t have jobs and lack ambition. From their vantage point, how can our lives have meaning? But that stuff was baggage. It didn’t make life meaningful, just busy. It gave our time shape and form, provided a sense of purpose, even if it was artificial. We did what we had to do to survive and, for those of us who were parents, to give our kids the best shot at life we could.

Having done all that, after we are no longer looking for a better job or yearning for a bigger house, when the kids are grown and we’ve done all we can for them … what we have left is ourselves. If our life had meaning, we know it. If it didn’t, we know that too. Retirement and senior citizenship neither add nor subtract meaning. It  just gives us more leisure to notice what we didn’t notice before. Hopefully, we like what we see.

Life is no more or less meaningful when you are old than when you were young. You just spend more time seeing doctors and the drugs are not nearly as much fun.

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