Tag Archives: Encouragement

What’s Right In Front Us Often Reveals Next Steps

©IBKimage 2011

Six years ago can seem like yesterday or twelve long years depending on what has occurred in the interim. The lessons or reminders of that time are certainly a part of who we are today and yet in seeing something from the past today we are often tempted to add judgments about what we did or didn’t or could have done differently. What we have in front of us is all that we can respond to … in ways unique to who we are, our current situation, and what gives us joy even in the midst of challenging transitions.

Todays image was taken six years ago, a few months after my mother died. The sea as always is a place of blessing for me and its gifts nourish in myriad ways. And you?
IBK

Posted in Stopping, Waiting Also tagged , , |

Hope

 

©2009IBKimage

Hello Dear Readers,

I’ve missed offering insight and encouragement in your life transitions, but today I’m ready to begin again. I’ve been in a season of rootedness vs. roaming and there have learned to wait for answers I couldn’t find, and in some sense, didn’t need.  It’s a season of asking new questions because this has been an year of new challenges.  The best part of my year has been that I have experienced a few things that I had no control over and instead of acting  to get them  resolved, I learned to be grateful for what I had lost.  I’ve learned to wait and be given what I need; I’ve accepted help when it’s offered; and relearned the difference between sentiment – feelings – and love, which takes into account how my actions  affect all involved.  I wonder what it would be like this coming year if I could “be” more love than to “do” loving things. Both of course are important.

So as this year ends, I wish for you comfort for your losses; the courage to end well and care for yourself in addition to others; to write new chapters; or begin new books; the time to reflect on how you’ve been loved through your “ickies”as my friend S. says and continue to hope as you notice the seedlings sprouting up amidst the rocks.

Love and Joy Come to You and Yours in these days of reflection and hope.

IBK

 

 

Posted in Blessings, Courage, New Beginning, Seasons Also tagged , |

Changes

 

©IBKimage@2013

 

 

Hello.  It’s been a couple of months since I’ve shared a word and image to offer insight and encouragement for life’s transitions.  I’ve actually had to learn to speak some of those words to myself as I’ve worked through some challenges regarding my health.  As I was making a routine left turn on a Sunday afternoon, my world started spinning…literally and now after a couple of months of vertigo incidents I am learning to live with the after affects of an acute vestibular event (probably a virus) that has damaged my left inner ear – the part dealing with balance.

 

It’s been a humbling experience to not be in control of your body movements; or to walk down the sidewalk looking as though one was inebriated; to realize that once again there is another loss to adjust to… and then you begin to understand – too slowly sadly – that there are all kinds provisions given that enter into this time of transition.  Family and friends providing comfort, encouragement, rides and arms for stability; a deeper prayer life not only for wellness but a deeper compassion for those who’ve lived with or are currently living with the reality of acute or chronic health challenges;  digging deep for a sense of humor in all of this; but mainly accepting that this is a new normal, and I will receive what I need when I need it and don’t have to force the timing.

 

Today’s image is usually seen as a  clear night shot of the colored lights in the fountains located at City Park with the downtown Denver skyline as a background.

After weeks of pushing myself to restart my blog, I realize that an abstract of reality  can be a gift to remind one of the essentials.

IBK

Posted in Blessings, Courage, New Beginning, Seasons Also tagged , , |

Balls in the Air … Balls on the Ground

©IBKimage2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We continue to be in transition as our house is still on the market in one location and we’re almost finished with a remodeling project in another one 500 miles away. On a recent walk with an old friend in the new location I was able to speak out loud so many of the challenges, joys, griefs, and pain of this particular transition.  She held a space for me to “put it all out there” without judgment or a need to fix things. Sometimes we just need someone to “hear our hearts.”  As we came to the end of our time together, she reminded me that I had a “lot of balls in the air” and perhaps I could let some of them bounce to the ground for now so that I would be able to focus on the “ones that could break …”  A phrase of encouragement and affirmation offered a new perspective and way of thinking about my situation. Sadly, it reminded me also that some of the balls had already broken.

 

As I’ve lived with this phrase for the past several days, I couldn’t wait to share today’s image with you.  It comes from the Chihuly Glass Exhibition, which opened this week at the Denver Botanic Gardens. At the end of my walk on a day when they were assembling some of the exhibits (which continue until November 2014),I came upon this amazing boat filled with beautiful balls of glass …  Just think if we keep juggling and trying to make  everything fit into our timeline, we might miss the boat and what’s inside.

What balls can you let “bounce?”

IBK

 

 

Posted in Letting Go, New Beginning, Seeing In New Ways Also tagged , , , , , |

Re-Entry

©2014 IBKimage

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hello dear readers. It’s been a while but somehow today seems to be the end of something and a gradual re-entry into something else.  After weeks of pitching, condensing and packing to put our house on the market here in Denver, and partially moving into a rental apartment on the 9th floor overlooking the Denver Botanic Garden, I needed renewal.  My camera parts were still in the case and I was too fatigued to lug anything else around, so on a late afternoon visit the other day, I grabbed my cell-phone and took a quick walk to the garden before closing.

Surprise, surprise, the new Chihuly glass sculpture exhibit which opens on June 14 and continues into November, was starting to appear in the garden pools and paths. For the next hour I forgot all but the beauty in front of me .  I got out my cell-phone camera and took a few pictures to map  shots for a more detailed shoot at a later date.  It was at that moment that I realized that during one of the most stressful times and transitions in my adult life, I had forgotten to do what brings me great joy and peace as a counter- balance to all of the chaos. And so it goes.

Hoping that as you continue with transitions in your own life, that you remember to include what brings you joy and renewal on your list of many tasks.

I’d also like to encourage you to check out more about Dale Chihuly at www.chihuly.com

IBK

Posted in Seasons, Seeing In New Ways Also tagged , , |

A Different Perspective

©IBKimage2011

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sometimes all we need to gain some insight into something that perplexes,irritates,confuses,angers,hurts, and keeps us stuck, is to change our way of thinking about it or to change the way we view it.    Usually that does it, unless of course we want to hang on to our feelings and emotions  and “right or wrong ways” about it.

Today’s image was taken from a position below a bridge in downtown Denver vs. at eye level.  The sun blushed buildings partnered with the clouds to delight before another day turned into darkness.

IBK

Posted in Seeing In New Ways Also tagged , , |

Something Old is New Again

©IBKimage 2012

 

It’s very interesting how things that we’re struggling with “all of a sudden” resolve.  One day, without notice, something that has been taking away so much of our physical and mental effort, finds it proper proportion in our life, or even disappears.  It was one of those weeks for me.  I was grateful for a negative result on a diabetes test and all that would have implied.  The gratitude turned into action as I examined the layers of denial that I had piled on during the last few months.

All of the things that I can do, (and know how to)  to stay healthy, both physically and emotionally and spiritually, I decided to take a sabbatical from.  Who knows if it was rebellion, passive-agressive behavior, or perhaps  just a realization that in our very human transitions, we sometimes just need  a long “soak” in a dry tub. Having no idea of what’s next, but trusting my creator,redeemer,sustainer to provide what I don’t even know I need.  Until then, we can take small next actions, engaging again in habits that satisfy and then gradually … the old is new again.

Today’s image comes from the Queen City Salvage Yard here in Denver; a delightful garden of oldness tucked underneath a busy I 70 East viaduct.  Here so close and yet so far away from the cacophony of daily activity, are yesterdays front doors, and old car bodies; tools and gadgets from another time, once on grandfather’s tool bench; and rusted hand pumps used to bring cool water to the farm and town kitchens before pvc pipe carried the running water to the faucet.

The paint is peeling on the door in our image but look at the beautiful grain and pattern underneath.  Someone will find this new old door and in just the right season – wherever it goes, it will be just the right thing .

IBK

Posted in Aging, Blessings, Courage, Letting Go, New Beginning, Seasons Also tagged , , , , , |

Stop

©IBKimage 2012

 

 

Having always been a curious sort from the time I was young, I’d sometimes get into trouble – especially if I asked people about things they’d  rather not disclose.  The phrase then was:  “Stop being so nosy”, or the firmer:  “mind your own business.”  I was always wondering how things worked and would order things like seeds to sell to the older single and widowed ladies in town , ostensibly to save them a trip to the store, but the true reward was the gift of time, conversation, and …a cookie or candy.  Most of the changes in my life were as a result of my interests and explorations and the freedom to experiment and change course.

 

Well into adulthood , I still had that luxury, but somewhere along the way, I found myself getting into trouble again because I was so curious about so many things, in addition to family and other responsibilities, that I kept  trying to devise systems to get and stay organized … this eventually became a career and I helped other people do that … and now today so many years later, I am overwhelmed by the choices that vie for my attention: travel here, try this, donate now,upgrade,download, only $2.00 for an e-book, press the button … Amazon delivers, punch your frequent buyer card and so on …  all of these opportunities can easily morph into agony of decision.

 

Today’s image of my hands  is a made on an ®iPad  in a program called ®Photo Booth, which allows the manipulation of images in a variety of ways.  Somehow it captures the paradox of the possibility  and an open handed prayer / plea for wisdom to minimize the choices that keep us bound.  I remember the gift of love, in those gifts of time and attention and treats, and want to offer that to a new generation.  To do so, I have to  hit the delete button on so many of the things that I routinely do… even if they’re great things – just not my things.  What about you?

Posted in Aging, Blessings, Courage, Letting Go, Seasons, Wisdom Also tagged , , , |

©IBKimage 2012

 

When my oldest son was little I gave him a book that was in my toy consultant  sample packet.  The title:  “Little While Friends.”  He received it just before we went on a family road trip one summer where we explored three towns named Keystone in three states … among other things.  Stopping to climb rocks or while visiting a snake attraction, he would often find little while friends to interact with.  They didn’t have the same stature as friends from home or the familiarity and commitment of family, but it taught him early on that there are interesting people and sights all around that satisfy. Perhaps, like a beautiful mixed bouquet of flowers in a vase from the floral shop; they are precious because they are a fragile, time-limited treasures.

Now these little while friends don’t always have to be people … the beauty of nature in it distinct seasons, the gift of artists helping us enter into a place we hadn’t considered before; musicians stirring our souls; delight with new learning and new technologies that improve our daily living and help to restore in some manner what has been lost … but generally, it’s people we continually seem to say goodbye to; at airports and graduations, weddings and job changes, first day of school and retirement, and then a final ending whose tension we all live with confronted with so many “little while” choices, actions and engagements.

Our layered wall hanging in today’s image, by a fiber artist in Omaha, NE provided a little while delight on a restaurant wall, as a long time friend and I cherished precious time together over a meal,but more importantly it also reminds me that no matter how dark it might be, the light is thankfully always present. The story of death and resurrection, mourned and celebrated is thankfully” little while” and eternal.

IBK

 

 

Posted in Aging, Authenticity, Courage, Seasons, Seeing In New Ways Also tagged , , , , , , , |

A Man and His Sons

©IBKimage1989

 

February is a frequent  birthday month in our small family, including my own, so I gave myself a two week sabbatical from blogging.

I pinpoint the time that I became a photographer  to the  Spring of 2008, when I took my year old digital point and shoot camera to Seattle with me on a return visit to the neighborhood where I had lived for 2 plus years while attending graduate school as an  “over 50”, and more importantly  to reunite with friends from my time there.  My friend B. took my husband and I to a small Japanese garden  and it was really through her encouragement that I started to “see in new ways”.  She had such a wonderful sense of composition with her own photography, that I was inspired to keep going.

Several years ago I scanned all of our old film photos into the computer and today as I was reviewing some, I came across today’s image which I took on an old film camera , so a seed was perhaps planted then that finally sprouted in another season.  It was especially poignant since the guy in the red shorts turned 28 today.

I’m reminded of the beautiful lyrics of a song from the old musical, “Fiddler on the Roof; sunrise, sunset,swiftly flow the years, one season following another, laden with happiness and tears; …”    No matter how young or old we are, it matters that we are present in other peoples’ lives and that we engage with others in relationship.  My friend’s love and encouragement started a whole new way of seeing for me, and allowed me to share my words and images with you 5 years later.

Think of someone that had that effect on you and how it’s changed your life.

IBK

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Inspiration, Seasons, Seeing In New Ways, Uncategorized Also tagged , , , |