Scale: The Elephant and the Turtle

The Weekly Photo Challenge is Scale.

I’m excited about this challenge because I’ve got some photos that I’ve been waiting to use.  I just hadn’t found the right spot for them, until now!

My parent’s house often reminds me of a museum.  My dad has more collectibles than I’m able to mention. 

Amongst his many collections, are a series of turtles and elephants. 

They are found both inside and outside the house.

There are two that are quite unique, and, they are also a pair.

Here is the turtle.

Among all the mosaic, can you see the dragonfly on its side, and the ladybug on its back?

Highly detailed mosaic covers one of Cathy's dad's collectible turtles.  The details covers the entire body, including the toes, tail, eyes and underbelly.

Highly detailed mosaic covers one of Cathy’s dad’s collectible turtles. The details covers the entire body, including the toes, tail, eyes and underbelly.

Here’s another view.

Top view of the turtle, showing the detail of a ladybug  and dragonflies on its shell.

Top view of the turtle, showing the detail of a ladybug and dragonflies on its shell.

Now here’s the elephant.  Can you see the butterfly on its side?

Here is the elephant set in the same mosaic style as the turtle.  He almost appears to be animated as he's' taking a step, and his trunk is curled upward.

Here is the elephant set in the same mosaic style as the turtle. He almost appears to be animated as he’s’ taking a step, and his trunk is curled upward.

Here’s another view.  I love the detail of the elephant on his back as well as the other butterflies.

Another view of the elephant reveals a portrait of an elephant on his back!  The portraits is surrounded by four butterflies.

Another view of the elephant reveals a portrait of an elephant on his back! The portraits is surrounded by four butterflies.

As you can see thy make quite a pair, with the turtle understandably smaller than the elephant.

Here they are side by side.

Here they are side by side.

So why did I chose this pair of figurines for this challenge?

Well…

I chose them

because the true size of them will help you to appreciate the level of skill of the artist and what he has accomplished!

A pencil shows the size and scale of the elephant and the turtle.  Without the pencil the two figurines appear to be much larger due to the level of detail on their bodies.

A pencil shows the size and scale of the elephant and the turtle. Without the pencil the two figurines appear to be much larger due to the level of detail on their bodies.

I think they’re delightful. 

The turtle and the elephant are turned lengthwise against the pencil.  They appear to be walking away!

The turtle and the elephant are turned lengthwise against the pencil. They appear to be walking away!

…and every time I look at them I see something new.

 

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Posted in Uncategorized

Shadows on a Walk

The Weekly Photo Challenge is “Shadowed.”

I opted to take this theme literally as I enjoy taking photos of shadows when walking.

In the photo below I took a brief stroll during a break from work on a crisp fall afternoon.

As I continued down a paved circular path I noticed my shadow intersected the trees.

I walked several rounds on the path when I finally decided it was photo time.

Cathy enjoys a stroll while on a break from work.  It's a cool day.  Cathy is wearing mittens, and the shadows show trees with minimal leaves.

Cathy enjoys a stroll while on a break from work. It’s a cool day. Cathy is wearing mittens, and the shadows show trees with minimal leaves.

In the next series my daughter and I enjoy a three mile cardio walk in our neighborhood.

We and our shadows are moving at a pretty good clip at this point.

I always chuckle when I observe these shadows as they’re long, much longer than my daughter and I.

We’re what you call petite.

I’m slightly taller than my daughter, and I top out at “5 feet nothing.”

Cathy and her daughter enjoy an active walk in their neighborhood.

Cathy and her daughter enjoy a cardio walk in their neighborhood. They and their shadows are moving at a fairly active pace.

Last but not least is our family shadow.

My husband, daughter and I enjoy another walk.  It’s a regular activity for us.

Most of the times, because of the time of day, our shadows lead the way.

A family of shadows heads out for a walk!

A family of shadows heads out for a walk!

We happily follow.

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Posted in 2015

Weekly Photo Challenge: Minimalist

 I took a stroll in my father’s garden…peacefully appreciative of his skill…

…and the care he gives his lovely charges…

Vibrant red blossom faces the light.

Vibrant red blossom faces the light.

This week’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Minimalist.

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Posted in 2014, Uncategorized

Peace Challenge: The Woman in the Mirror

Months  ago our friend Kozo challenged us to post about our truest self, our grandest self, or about the self we would like to be.  Who was the person each of us faced in the mirror?  What did that reflection say to you?

Even though I didn’t write a post at that time, the topic has always stayed with me.

I decided it was finally time to post my thoughts as I reach certain milestones and close out (or perhaps start?) some chapters in my life.

Anyone who’s known me for at least a couple of years can visibly see that I’ve physically changed in many ways.  People who haven’t seen me in a while may walk right by me because they don’t recognize me.

That said, the deepest parts of me haven’t really changed.

For me, that’s the interesting part.

Here are photos of Cathy taken on the same date for the 2012, 2013, and, 2014.  She's been through substantial physical changes.  She also had plenty of help to be able to achieve this.  Oh, and yes, she plans on maintaining that support in order to continue her journey!

Here are photos of Cathy taken on the same date for the 2012, 2013, and, 2014. She’s been through substantial physical changes. She also had plenty of help to be able to achieve this. Oh, and yes, she plans on maintaining that support in order to continue her journey!

The way I see it, because my health and stamina have improved substantially, I’ve finally been able to achieve milestones that previously were out of my reach.

Being healthier and stronger has allowed “dormant” parts of me to start coming forward.

Parts of me that are creative….

Cathy finally finished a comfy shawl that she crocheted over a long period of time.  She'd do just a little bit at a time until it was complete!  Good things may not happen overnight!  Sometimes good things come one step at a time!

Cathy finally finished a comfy shawl that she crocheted over a long period of time. She’d do just a little bit at a time until it was complete! Good things may not happen overnight! Sometimes good things come one step at a time!

Fun loving…

Cathy reacts to a love note that her hubby put in her lunch!  Sometimes the best parts of your day are unexpected surprises!  Enjoy those moments, and, be sure to pass the love forward!

Cathy reacts to a love note that her hubby put in her lunch! Sometimes the best parts of your day are unexpected surprises! Enjoy those moments, and, be sure to pass the love forward!

Vibrant…

Cathy takes a private moment to play her guitar and sing!  This is a part of her that resonates very deep within her.  When  you listen closely you'll discover a part of her that often isn't seen or heard.

Cathy takes a private moment to play her guitar and sing! This is a part of her that resonates very deep within her. When you listen closely you’ll discover a part of her that often isn’t seen or heard.

Parts of me that are becoming stronger…

Stronger in body…

As you know from her story, Cathy's been working with a personal trainer to help her achieve numerous fitness goals. She's asked for more challenges, and she hasn't been disappointed! She's now able to reach for, and, achieve milestones that two years ago were not in her line of sight!

As you know from her story, Cathy’s been working with a personal trainer to help her achieve numerous fitness goals. She’s asked for more challenges, and she hasn’t been disappointed! She’s now able to reach for, and, achieve milestones that two years ago were not in her line of sight!

Stronger in mind…

Sometimes when the going gets tough, it's important to take a pause, and, just breathe.  Cathy take a moment to be still during a particularly hectic day...

Sometimes when the going gets tough, it’s important to take a pause, and, just breathe. Cathy take a moment to be still during a particularly hectic day…

Stronger in soul and spirit…

Cathy, her daughter, and husband share a family moment in church.

Cathy, her daughter, and husband share a family moment in church.

Parts of me that are able to dream and enjoy a sense of wonder.

Cathy takes a second to just dream, to be grateful, and, to wonder about all that's happened.  In the midst of a hectic world, it's important to take the time to do this.

Cathy takes a second to just dream, to be grateful, and, to wonder about all that’s happened. In the midst of a hectic world, it’s important to take the time to do this.

It’s  been hard work, but it’s been worth it.  I can’t express that any other way!

My blog byline is still true.

Yes, I’m still sipping tea…

Cathy's favorite teapot.  Wonderful aromatic beverages are brewed there!

Cathy’s favorite teapot. Wonderful aromatic beverages are brewed there!

…and I am still learning from the past, looking forward to the future, and learning to be still in every day life.

Cathy balances in "star pose." The photo is significant not only to represent a sense of balance, but to show that Cathy is able, after many months of work, to balance for short periods of time on her right leg which was injured quite some time ago!

Cathy balances in “star pose.” The photo is significant not only to represent a sense of balance, but to show that Cathy is able, after many months of work, to balance for short periods of time on her right leg which was injured quite some time ago!

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Posted in 2014, B4Peace, Uncategorized

Signs

The Weekly Photo Challenge is Signs.

A few years ago I made a visit to my folks house with the intent of scanning family photos.

I came across a unique piece of family memorabilia.

When I asked my mother about it I was astounded to learn what it was.

There, in an envelope was a little piece of cloth tape with writing on it.

How little?

About one-inch square (two and a half centimeters).

There was a lot of information written on its tiny surface!

A little sign with large significance to Cathy's family!

A little sign with large significance to Cathy’s family!

My mother explained at the time when she was born, the nursery staff would write pertinent information on a little piece of cloth tape, then they’d stick the tape on the babies’ backs in order to identify them!

Apparently all the babies had these little signs on them to show who they were, and to whom they belonged!

There were no hospital bracelets, just the little pieces of tape!

Here is my mother’s information:

#121- 685

Lopez, Female

Wt. 6# 6oz.

Mother, Carmen

#121- 681

Born, 1:02 p. m.

8-31-30

A one-of-a kind miniature sign with special significance for my family!

Cathy's grandmother, Carmen, and her mom, Mary, early 1930's.

Cathy’s grandmother, Carmen, and her mom, Mary, early 1930’s.

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Posted in 2014, Family history

Nighttime

The Weekly Photo Challenge is Nighttime.

Here is a photo I snapped in the wee morning hours from the backseat of an airport shuttle.

I had traveled to Des Moines, Iowa on a business during the winter of 2012.

I admit it.

I’m a hot weather gal.  I’ve only seen snow fall a few times in my life.

The previous evening I happened to be in my hotel room, watching the snow fall.

I found it to be very calming.

Very early the next morning I took a shuttle to the airport.   This gave me the opportunity to simply sit back and enjoy the darkness and my surroundings.

The Des Moines River was frozen.  Trees with barren branches lined the bank.  The moon was shining in the distance.

The windows inside the airport shuttle framed the scene.

It was a quite peaceful.

While I was looking forward to warmer weather back home, I was also appreciative to experience a small glimpse of this icy winter at night.

Trees line the frozen Des Moines River during the Winter of 2012.

Trees line the frozen Des Moines River during the Winter of 2012.

 

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Posted in 2014

Endurance–“Sugar Beets”

 

The Weekly Photo Challenge is Endurance.

I went to the family archives to find the photo my father labeled “sugar Beets.”

This photo from the mid-1920’s helps me to understand this part of my family’s history.

Cathy's grandparents, Josefina and Jose , and her uncle,. Lupe sit atop a pile of sugar beets.  Photo is from the mid-1920's.

Cathy’s grandparents, Josefina and Jose , and her uncle, Lupe sit atop a pile of sugar beets. Photo is from the mid-1920’s.

When I asked my father about this photo he explained his parents, Jose and Josefina are sitting on a pile of sugar beets because they worked in the fields to harvest the crop.  They might be waiting for their day’s pay.  My Uncle Lupe is with them.

My grandmother also happens to be pregnant with my aunt at the time this photo was taken!

In order to provide for their family, my grandparents migrated from region to region following the harvests for various crops.

Because of their constant moving, my aunts and uncles were all born in different areas of the United States such as Texas, Colorado and New Mexico.  The family finally settled in California.

I look at this picture and have a hard time imagining what it must have been like to have a toddler, be expecting another child, and at the same time work in a field harvesting crops.

In addition, my grandfather had limitations.  A few years earlier he had lost a leg in an accident.  Despite the challenge of having a wooden leg he worked in the fields alongside my grandmother.

I looked at the sugar beets – rooted in the ground then uprooted by my grandparents.

Endurance…my grandparents didn’t always have the opportunities to be rooted in one location.  They were constantly moving, laboring in the fields, their little ones in tow.

Still, they built their family one journey at a time.

They gave me my roots.

Endurance, indeed.

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Posted in 2014

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