Wordless Wednesday: Idaho Drive

 

Today John and I finally had a chance to explore a little bit of our new home state. We didn’t have to go far to find scenery and mountains. I took these pictures at Eagle Island State Park and Horseshoe Bend. I’m linking with Wordless Wednesday at Create With Joy…join us!

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Multitude Monday: 171-177

 

Join us as we share our gratitude every Monday. It’s a great way to begin the week! Here is my gratitude list for this week:

171. The legacy of Martin Luther King. On this special day, we celebrate the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.. As I was growing up in Yonkers, N.Y., my parents supported his work and taught me the importance of his life. I was only seven years old when he died, but his teachings inspired me during my childhood and continue to guide me today.

172. A visit to the San Antonio Mission Trail, one of our favorite places to spend a Sunday afternoon.

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Wooden cross at Mission San Juan in San Antonio, Texas.

173. This fellow visitor to Mission San Juan, who stayed nearby until I could take his picture.

San Juan Mockingbird

174. A letter from our sponsored child in Ghana. We have a picture she drew on our refrigerator. As my mom says, “every refrigerator should have a child’s drawing on it!”

175. Great books by great writers who continue to teach through the decades. A copy of Hemingway’s A Movable Feast, which my husband is reading, lies on our coffee table. I learn about writing even when I just pick up the book and read a few random pages.

176. Unusually warm weather for this time of year (even in South Central Texas), after a cold snap a few of weeks ago.

177. Some relief today from the mountain cedar pollen, which has been inundating our area. I hope this is the beginning of the end of the season!

And I hope you’ll join us at A Holy Experience, where you can read more gratitude lists and maybe share yours. Have a wonderful week!

 

 

Multitude Monday: 164-170

 

After two weeks on the road and visiting friends in Arizona, I am refreshed and ready to write! Many thanks to Ann Voskamp at A Holy Experience for hosting Multitudes on Mondays.

164. A wonderful two-week vacation with my husband John, touring Texas, New Mexico and Arizona. The scenery, such as Arizona’s painted cliffs, was like nowhere else on earth.

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165. Visiting friends in Flagstaff, Arizona more than four years after I moved to San Antonio, Texas. Northern Arizona’s San Francisco Peaks come into view on Highway 40:

AZ SFPeaks

166. My Arizona friends — who are family to me — finally met my husband! John and I especially enjoyed attending the annual banquet for the women’s shelter where I worked and lived.

167. Peace and quiet at our rented cabin in Sedona, Arizona, where the only sound was the rushing waters of Oak Creek. We had a chance to relax, take pictures of the scenery, and adjust to the altitude!

Sedona cabin

168. Thundershower our last night in Sedona filled the canyon with clean, fresh post-rain air.

Sedona cabin rain

169. A scenic trip home through Las Cruces New Mexico. Stunning views of the San Andres Mountains from our hotel, and a stunning sunrise:

Las Cruces Sunrise

170. A safe arrival home to San Antonio!

Monday Skies

It all started with a simple trip to the store to pick up a few groceries. As we were putting the groceries in the car, a gentle but steady rain refreshed us. When John started the ignition and the sun started to shine through the drops, I wondered out loud if we’d see a rainbow.

Good thing I had my phone camera…

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About an hour after we got home, blue skies broke through the clouds. This time, I had my trusty Nikon D5100, so I was able to practice taking some HDR shots.

Good reminder to keeping looking up!

“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard. Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world. In the heavens he has pitched a tent for the sun, which is like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion, like a champion rejoicing to run his course. It rises at one end of the heavens and makes its circuit to the other; nothing is hidden from its heat.” Psalm 19:1-6

 

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The sun and clouds will be trading places in the sky all day today so I’ll have plenty of chances to take more pictures. Love that sky!

Bamberger Park Nature Trails

We picked up our cameras and went for a walk this afternoon. Bamberger Park, which has nature trails on 70 acres of land, is a short drive from our home.

Needed peace and nature’s quiet today. Soothe our souls, Lord, and bring us back to the beauty of the present.

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In spite of the heat and humidity, we enjoyed this chance to take a deep breath and slow down. To come back to ourselves.

Amazing how distant our struggles seem, how refreshed we feel, when we pay attention.

As John always tells me, “Stay creative!”

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Multitude Monday: 156-163

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If we listen and watch, God teaches us through the creation. Take plants, for example. Here in the dry, hot South Central Texas summers, we can learn a lot about gratitude from plants.

156. Reaching out to friends in other states and even other parts of the world. Sensing the warmth of friendship, in spite of all the miles.

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157. Resilience and hope that brings growth and healing, whether mending bones or hearts.

158. Reaching down deep, knowing that the living water will sustain us, even in dry times.

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And there are many personal reasons for gratitude this week.

159. My husband John’s good report from his 8-week post-op appointment. No more neck brace!

160. A day trip with John after he was cooped up in the house for weeks.

161. Witnessing the success of a writer friend who inspires and encourages.

162. Seeing our cat asleep in the crook of John’s arm, watching me with one sleepy eye open. Not having the heart to take a picture and disturb the snoozing kitty.

163. Unexpected inspiration from a quote by Celia Thaxter (1835-1894), fellow New Hampshire native and author of An Island Garden:

“There shall be eternal summer in the grateful heart.”

For more Multitudes on Mondays, join us at A Holy Experience. Savor the summer and have a beautiful week!

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