Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Prayer for the New Year
By St. Francis of Assisi

Lord make me an instrument of thy peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
Where there is injury, pardon.
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light.
Where there is sadness, joy.

Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood, as to understand; to be loved, as to love; for it is in giving that we receive, it is in pardoning that we are pardoned, and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Holiday Lights

The following photos were taken friday night while looking at Holiday Lights in the Chicagoland area.

©Joyce Meyer 2008

Take a look at this 25 foot sand sculpture of Santa Claus: http://news.yahoo.com/nphotos/Photo-Highlight/ss/441.
©Sudarsan Pattnaik
There are 42 other photographs in this amazing slideshow. Enjoy!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Perhaps this icicle will melt today.
Tonight another couple, my husband and I went out to view Holiday Lights. It was eerie! Why? Fog surrounded us. It was follow the yellow line or the red lights from the car in front of us. Later, we stopped for a donut and a cup of coffee. Then we sat and chatted for a while. We dropped the couple off at their home and then about an hour later arrived safe and sound at home. Surprise, surprise, surprise, we found out that our electricity had been off. The microwave clock was blinking. Oh yes, we also saw the power company truck was outside fixing the problem. It was a reminder to be thankful for the small things in life like heat and light. We are expecting rain and 50 degree weather. Hopefully, that will clear the ice and snow off sidewalks and streets in the Chicagoland area.

Friday, December 26, 2008

On Christmas day we went to see MARLEY AND ME. If you want to watch a film clip before seeing the movie here is the site: http://movies.yahoo.com/movie/1809995057/video/10232836/20081016/150/10232836-100-wmv-s.73391156-,10232836-1000-flash-s.73391172-,10232836-300-flash-s.73391164-,10232836-300-wmv-s.73391157-,10232836-700-flash-s.73391169-,10232836-700-wmv-s.73391160-,10232836-1000-wmv-s.73391161-,10232836-100-flash-s.73391163-,10232835-2700-qtv-s.73391173-,10232835-6800-qtv-s.73391174-,10232835-10300-qtv-s.73391176-
It is a funny story; but be prepared the ending is sad.
This year, our family was fortunate enough to see luminaries. Can you imagine brown paper sacks, a candle stabilized in sand and then they are placed on sidewalks outside? About five blocks of houses were participating in this event. When we drove up the road, it was hard to see all the lights because of the high banks of snow. When the car was turned around and went back down the hill, then we could see all the luminaries all at once. It looked like a runway for Santa Claus to land his sleigh. It was magical! What a way to end Christmas Eve.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

I took this photograph yesterday. This angel is displayed on a kitchen shelf. I love how she sparkles. Notice that she is holding a book and a red candle. Last year, I purchased the angel at Kohl's. I removed the tag which read, "Made in China."

Monday, December 22, 2008

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas Trivia

Christmas Trivia Website: http://ezinearticles.com/?Christmas-Trivia&id=86008
Copyright: Chicago Style Citation:Pokorney, Marilyn "Christmas Trivia." Christmas Trivia EzineArticles.com. http://ezinearticles.com/?Christmas-Trivia&id=86008

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Turn your speakers on and watch the World's Largest Snow Woman at this site: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qYjJaJFPDk4

Bethel Area Chamber of Commerce website: http://bethelmainesnowwoman.com/

Friday, December 19, 2008

Stars, Stars and More Stars

This photograph was taken only because I looked up instead of down and around and through. Its presence spoke to me. I didn't ignore or argue with the muse.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Here is an interesting site:
I wish you simple pleasures this holiday season.
“The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and that God wishes to see people happy, amidst the simple beauty of nature.”
…Anne Frank

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

"He is a man of sense who does not grieve for what he has not, but rejoices in what he has."

Find out more about Epictetus here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epictetus

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

He Never Got Those Shoes

Hobo riding on a freight train
from Florida to Tennessee.
He jumped off at Dyersburg
and walked 40 miles.

He chopped some kindling.
Ate some chicken and brown crowder peas.
He saw a girl barefoot.
They married and had a son.

A lumberman came by.
This man chopped some wood.
Ate froglegs and corn on the cob.
Then held the baby boy for a few minutes.

The stranger said,

"You name him Travis Orbie
and I'll buy him a pair of shoes."

So they did.
Illinois is expecting two to four inches of snow today/tonight. First, I had to find my boots and gloves. When I opened the door to go outside, for a second, I was a kid again. It was wonderful seeing the snow sparkle like 10,000 diamonds on the staircase. The sight took my breath away. Then I brushed the snow of the car windows. Another day of errands...doctor appointment, gas, bank, CVS, errands after errands. Finally, I closed the door to the frigid weather (22 degrees) and curled up under a homemade loon blanket that a very good friend gave me one year. I watched channel TMC on Direct TV. Does anyone remember Joseph Cotton or Ingrid Bergman?

Monday, December 15, 2008


1 c. butter
½ c. powered sugar
½ c. pecan nuts
2 c. sifted flour

Mix all together except nuts. Take a piece of
dough, about the size of a walnut, roll into
a nice round ball. Make an indentation
in center and place a half of a pecan meat in the
center and roll dough around it, completely covering
it. Place on greased pan and bake in a 325 degree
oven. Watch that they don’t burn. Remove
from pan and roll in powdered sugar when
they are cool enough to handle.

Tip: Small sized nuggets
Bake for 12 min. But check after 10 minutes
Are you interested in making a snowflake?
Go to this site:

Sunday, December 14, 2008

When I hear the whisper of the muse, I listen.

©Joyce Meyer

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Haiku Moment #19
Early morning
call of the loon
wake up.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Recently I discovered that John Wagner is the creator of the cartoon Maxine. See this website: http://pressroom.hallmark.com/PeopleBehindOurProducts/John-Wagner.
Maxine really strikes my funny bone. How about yours?
©Joyce Meyer 2008

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Today, I visited Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art, Winter Park, Florida. I was awed by the Tiffany Chapel, which was designed for 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago. Learned that women artists did flowers for Tiffany lamps while the male artists were assigned geometric designs for Tiffany lamps. Louis Comfort Tiffany would decide that a vase wasn't the right color and he would smash it with his cane even if an artist had worked days on the project. The Morse was founded by Jeannette Genius McKean (1909-1989) and her husband Hugh F. Mckean (1908-1995).

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Tonight we ate at Charley's Steak House, Orlando, Florida. It has been rated as #1 in America. Menu offers 20 oz. Filet Mignon, 24 oz. Porterhouse, a 50 oz. Master Cut and a two pound Australian Lobster Tail. It is an amazing place!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Today we flew from O'Hare Airport to Orlando. Instead of facing a snow storm in Chicagoland area, we are enjoying sunny skies. We took a water taxi, shopped till we dropped and then appeared for dinner at Emeril Lagasse' restaurant in City Walk UNIVERSAL area. It was a lovely time!
"Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. And today? Today is a gift. That is why we call it the present."
...Babatunde Olatunji
©Joyce Meyer, October 2008
Image was taken in Musky Bay, Lac Court Oreilles, Wisconsin.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

TV and radio stations forecasted 6 to 8 inches of snow for the Chicagoland area. Snow and ice and rain did show up. My husband and I went down to Lake Michigan for a photo shoot but the wet rain mixed with snow, the slippery incline, and the wind was not fun. We decided to call it a day and went home.

Then I decided to make fish chowder for dinner. It takes a couple of hours to simmer this dish on top of the stove. For those of you who aren't allowed butter or salt or bacon this is a perfect dish. Enjoy! Now we are finally warmed up.

For Your Information:
Illinois has gas prices under $2.00 a gallon for regular. With the holidays just around the corner this is a relief. Don't you think so?


1 pound fillets, fresh or frozen
1/4 cup chopped bacon or salt pork (optional)
1 whole onion or use red onion, chopped fine
1/2 green pepper
six potatoes, diced
1/4 teaspoon thyme
1/4 teaspoon rosemary
1/4 teaspoon parsley
1/8 teaspoon cumin
1/8 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/8 teaspoon ground coriander seed
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
leftover vegetables, cut up
6 sliced fresh mushrooms
15 baby carrots, chopped
2 cans mushroom soup, put 1/2 can of water in each can till you empty most of the ingredients in can
1/4 cup wine, white or pink
No salt
1/4 cup flour for thickening purposes
1 stick margarine or butter

Cut fillets into 1/2 inch pieces. Fry bacon until lightly browned. Add rest of ingredients. Cook until tender. Serve with crackers and/or fresh baked bread to dip in chowder. Delicious!

Serves 6.


©Joyce Meyer, 2005.
I saw these mops hanging outside inbetween buildings. Image had pipes, a gas meter, laundry drying outside on a line, plus these mops. Using Picassa3, I cropped and changed the colors into this wild, fun image. Do you see the eyes? Weird huh?

Monday, December 1, 2008

Downsizing in 1929

At 18, I escaped from Cutler Hill
got a job on a barge
travelling down the Mississippi River to Memphis.

A fellow shipmate and I
had never been to a big city before.
We saw vaudeville,
ate pie and coffee for a dime.

We returned to work on the barge
where the officer said,
"Your services are no longer required."
©Joyce Meyer 2005

Sunday, November 30, 2008

"Art is not a pastime but a priesthood."
...Jean Cocteau

©Joyce Meyer 2008

Saturday, November 29, 2008

holding a rock
I cracked caps on cement.

reading ‘No Trespassing’ sign
on barbed wire fence
where land mines and bombs
were hidden.

worrying about when the red
button would be pushed and I
would smell skin burning
like Hiroshima.

I heard the last
gasp of breath Dad took.

Friday, November 28, 2008

“See how nature----trees, flowers, grass---grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence. We need silence to be able to touch souls.”
…. Mother Teresa

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow."
...Melody Beattie

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Haiku Moment #18
hand-written letter, forever stamp
cried sitting in red grass.

Monday, November 24, 2008

My intuition said, "Shoot this." And so I did. The image was filled with chaos. Patterns, forms, color shouted from every corner of the picture. Look at me! Look at me! I felt overwhelmed with what existed. I focused on one thing and changed the color image to sepia. And out of this action came unadorned beauty.

Unadorned Beauty

Sunday, November 23, 2008

This shot was taken in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, May, 2008. I saw this lonely dead tree standing there among trees of every green color in the universe. Friday, I was looking at old files and wondered delete or keep this tree image. Perhaps if I worked with the picture, the ordinary could become extraordinary. So the process began. I cropped out everything, but the tree. Then I changed it from color to sepia. I didn’t think it popped enough. So, then I tried using different colors for a background and discovered that now it had the desired effect. Here is the finished result.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

I focused my attention on this flower
by letting go of background noises
like traffic, birds calling to one another,
and just movement of leaves in the wind.
Lesson relearned: Seeing the darkness,
brings out the light.
Author Sam Hamill wrote, “His [Bashō] fundamental teaching remained his conviction that in composing a poem, there are two ways:” ‘one is entirely natural, in which the poem is born from within itself; the other way is to make it through the mastery of technique.'
Mr. Hamill wrote, “ His notion of the poem being ‘born within itself’ should under no circumstances be confused with its being self-originating. A fundamental tenet of Buddhism runs exactly to the contrary: nothing is self-originating. Bashō poems were in fact a natural product of his close observation of the natural relationships of people and things, our presence in ‘nature’.”
THE ESSENTIAL BASHŌ Translated by Sam Hamill, SHAMBHALA, Boston, © 1999, pages 176-177.

Friday, November 21, 2008

When this shot was taken, I was not in a hurry.
I needed to stay there and let time pass.
Purpose was to study this rose. To actually see
the color and the raindrops clinging to each petal.
I wanted to immerse myself in that moment.
"Nobody sees a flower, really---it is so
small---we haven't time, and to see takes
time, like to have a friend takes time."
....Georgia O'Keeffe.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

"And if there is anyone who has no wish,
he should not stay in the world, he
should avoid the crowd as he cannot
exist there; he should go into the
mountains, and even there he should
turn into a tree or a rock in order to
exist, because to be a living being without
a wish is not possible."
...Hazrat Khan

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Rider has no face. Horse has no tail. Reposted image,
taken at Epcot, Walt Disney World.

View from the Window at Le Gras, Nicéphore Niépce, in 1826. Public Domain.
Today, I was looking up the word bitumen.
One word, lead me to discover that
Joseph Nicéphore Niépce took the first photograph:
AT LE GRAS, can be viewed at
Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center,
University of Texas, Austin.
Just requested book LIFE: 100 Photographs
That Changed The World from the
library. I can hardly wait to see it.
Research is my passion, it never ends.
Rider has no face, horse now has tail.
Image taken at Epcot, Walt Disney World
"Leaves no trace, like fresh snow."
...I Ching

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!
Surprise, when we went out for dinner
last night, the backyard looked
like powdered sugar was tossed
everywhere. I can't believe it;
snow before Thanksgiving. Very
Haiku Moment #17
Pressed flowers
wedding bouquet in Bible
our memory.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Haiku Moment #16
Owl with hooded eyes
amid the steaming mist hollows
rush of air.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

"A pessimist sees only the dark side
of the clouds, and mopes;
a philosopher sees both sides, and shrugs;
an optimist doesn't see the clouds
at all--he's walking on them."
...Leonard Louis Levinson

Saturday, November 15, 2008

This is a corrected Photo.
Barn Shots
I like exploring shapes this time with old posts and wood, vertical and horizontal lines, reflections in windows, and roofing material. First shot, took out one window. Second shot, took out two windows. Third shot, was the whole picture of a barn. Fourth shot was not taken because I didn't want to include the house, the acreage or the sky into the image. Why is that? My focus is to see things as simple as possible. I wanted to show conflict in the shots with the use of vertical and horizontal lines and how light falls on object. Was this accomplished? Yes. These could have been wow shots through better use of light.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Haiku Moment #15
Summer morning
fog down the peninsula road
envelopes the bay.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

“Follow nature, return to nature, be nature.”
…Bashō: Oku-no-hosomichi

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

“Yesterday’s self is already worn out!”
…Bashō: Oku-no-hosomichi

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Haiku Moment #14
Early morning sun
leaves which turned golden brown
magical hour.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Haiku Moment #13
Daddy long legs spider
tight rope walking
on dry curly leaves.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Haiku Moment #12
Smokey mountains
sheets hanging on clothesline
first kiss.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

No More Calico Hats

The father stands
looking across the bricks toward the misty gully
for a split second each forgets the other.
They dream of yesterday.
Grandmother smiles.

She wears a handmade flour sack apron
with beans piled high as a cat’s back.
A beagle sleeps on the front porch
next to her.
Grandmother smiles.

She wears a calico hat
protecting her face from the hot sun.
Eyes like purple pansies growing in a spring garden,
she leans back in a rocker remembering dad as a boy.
Grandmother smiles.

September she faces what we all do, alone.
Is it dark and cold or is light and warm?
Her last earthly vision was of sleeping under a beech tree.
She is gone to meet her ancestors.
Grandmother smiles.

©Joyce Meyer, 11/07/2008

Friday, November 7, 2008

"Outdoor light that has been architecturalized and rendered abstract by the opening in the wall imparts tension to the space and makes it sacred."
...Tadao Ando
see also this site:
Photographs by Sanghyun Lee
Church On The Water To The Church Of The Light
Scroll down to Church Of The Light
FYI: I did not download another language; just clicked on X to close box.

Note to Self:
Light+Shadows+Objects+Space+Form=Sacred Space

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Image was taken at Epcot, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
"The moon and sun are eternal travelers. Even the years wander on. A lifetime adrift in a boat or in old age leading a tired horse into the years, every day is a journey, and the journey itself is home."
...Bashō: Oku-no-hosomichi

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Haiku Moment #11
"Bees, bees and more bees
budding sunflower field
embraced by shadows."

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Here is information on why we vote on Tuesday, in November: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ynews/ynews_pl126

"Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes."
...Mahatma Gandhi

Monday, November 3, 2008

My watch says 12:38 p.m. My "puter" says 11:38 a.m. Did you turn your clocks back yet? I need to spend some time today setting clocks back. Does anyone know what time it is? Half passed a freckle. Sun is full center in the sky, must be noon.

Haiku Moment #10
"Grandfather Grandmother
hear horse hoofs and howling
past shadows."

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Haiku Moment #9
"Spring fed lake
saucer-shaped lotus blossoms
relief in the stillness."

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Haiku Moment #8
wooden apple crate scooter
10 cents a glass."

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Haiku Moment #7
beauty of the everyday
Thought for today:
Listen. Learn. Grow.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

"There are moments in our lives, there are moments in a day, when we seem to see beyond the usual. Such are the moments of our greatest happiness."
...Robert Henri, The Art Spirit

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Haiku Moment #6
"A journey
latch-key swings back and forth

Monday, October 27, 2008

Haiku Moment #5
tears cradled in pink petals
dancing patterns.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Flowers are so inviting to study. Look at the pink color. Raindrops are on each petal. A petal, another petal make up a flower. Quiet undeclared beauty awakens my soul. This rose waits patiently. Soon these petals will be left behind to decompose. Lost.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

"...my dad instilled in me a pure appreciation for home. He reveled in the elegant, epicurean pleasures of hearth and family, and he showed me that everything I'll ever need can be found within."
The Wabi-Sabi House The Japanese Art of Imperfect Beauty, Robyn Griggs Lawrence, CLARKSON POTTER/PUBLISHERS, NY, ©2004, Dedication Page "For My Father".

I was very fortunate to have a similar father. I remember once he brought me to a restaurant in Chicago for lunch. He asked me to order a baked potato without sour cream, butter, salt and pepper. He wanted me to eat the potato and taste the potato and honor the potato that I was eating. At the time, I didn't know he was teaching me how to live in a wabi-sabi house; but he was.

Friday, October 24, 2008

"O Great Spirit, help me always...to remember the peace that may be found in silence."

Thursday, October 23, 2008

"Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower."
...Albert Camus

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Today, I saw shadows dancing in-between tall skyscrapers, hundreds of people walking, a man cleaning brass while talking on a cell phone and the “L” going around the Loop. All these sights and sounds welcomed me back to Chicago. There isn’t a place like it!

I saw a photography exhibit of India at the Cultural Center. Revisited an architectural display. Checked out a gift shop. I keep going back to enjoy a sandwich and to listen to talented guest musicians and get comfortable with memories of bygone days at this place.

After getting my teeth cleaned, shopping till I dropped and completing a photo shoot, I headed for home. The last thing I saw was an elderly man who could hear the piped in music at Lake Street Station and played along with the violin. The sound touched my soul. Such joy he brought me this day.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

A neighbor and long time friend invited me to a book review. It was delightful! Barbara Rinella was a dynamic speaker who didn't use cheat sheets but did bring props. She had a pillbox hat and sunglasses and a dark wig to imitate Jacqueline Kennedy. She brought a dress and hat to look like Eleanor Roosevelt. And so on. She would dress and walk and mentioned details or a funny thing that happened which would peak listeners interest to learn more about each White House President's wife. Margaret Truman's book entitled FIRST LADIES was one of the books Ms. Rinella used for accurate stories. Check out her website for other books she recommends and upcoming book review events www.barbararinella.com.

When it stopped raining, I went shooting with my camera. I found some mums, some roses, a waterfall and yes; I took more morning glory shots. Today, I noticed a lot of buds, some buds barely opened looked like tiny stars, and then there were these two gigantic leaves. Why only two? I seem to be studying morning glories like artists did in the past with horses and ballet dancers. Soon frost will come and I will become interested in other subject material. Life is such an adventure!

Monday, October 20, 2008

This shot was taken in our own backyard. Morning glories are growing helter-skelter on an entrance gate. It is my husband's favorite flower. He is pleased to see them climbing on the tall pine next door. It is like morning glory heaven here. This photo is of a morning glory after a heavy rainstorm. My goal is to see ordinary things differently.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Haiku Moment
"now hear fall mums."

I saw this advertisement painted on a board with red paint. The sign should have said, "Now here fall mums." The word hear should have been here. Whenever my husband and I would go by the Garden Center, we would laugh and say "Do you hear the mums yet?" Use your imagination and let me know if you can hear the fall mums.
I think that this mistake, is a wonderful Haiku poem. Don't you?

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Haiku Moment #4
"bug on face
funnel-shaped morning glories
blue twined"

Friday, October 17, 2008

Close-up of a sunflower.
Haiku Moment #3
shards of glass
broken-down abandoned building
beacons from yesterday

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Haiku Moment #2
three circle stones
rough ride in the sea
stories disappear
Haiku Moment #1
mountain climbing
don't look back at where you've been
cold glass of ice tea

Morning Glory image facing sun. Still exploring textures and shapes.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

"In your travels may there be
Beauty behind you,
Beauty on both sides of you,
And beauty ahead of you."
...Navajo Indian

Blue Morning Glory shot from underneath, then cropped to show patterns and textures.