Thursday, June 9, 2011


I first saw this poem hanging on my graphic arts teacher's wall when I was going through one of the hardest times in my life.  High school wasn't easy for me, my family was going through a lot of rough stuff, and one day... I remember holding back the tears, sitting at a computer desk facing the wall, pretending to be working and looking up and seeing this.  Like it was placed right there for me to read.  It gave me a lot of wisdom and hope, and I felt at peace for once.  I felt like it said everything I needed to hear at the time. 

I'm actually refinishing my work desk and on the top, I've decided to paint this poem so it's always there for me to read.  I've underlined the parts that spoke to me that day so long ago, now the whole poem speaks to me.  It is full of wisdom.  I'll post photos of my desk when finished.  

So here it is, Desiderata...

(Written by Max Ehrmann in the 1920s)

Go placidly amid the noise and the haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.

As far as possible, without surrender,
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even to the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons;
they are vexatious to the spirit.

If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain or bitter,
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs,
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals,
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love,
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment,
it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be.
And whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life,
keep peace in your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

How to's...

How to get a toddler inside the house while it's starting to sprinkle and thunder?  

Wave his favorite toy in the air and say, "mine" with a smile... 



Friday, June 3, 2011

summer bucket list

Our Summer Bucket List 
Why a summer bucket list?  

Why not?


play in sprinkler
go swimming
draw with sidewalk chalk
blow enormous bubbles 
make home-made ice cream
go for a walk
go for a bike ride
visit Yellow Springs (a unique and fun town) 
watch clouds
go camping
swimming lessons for Jack
have a picnic
eat watermelon
have a cookout
go to Young’s Jersey Dairy (it’s a place where kids can pet farm animals, play on tractors, get ice cream, etc.) 
pick strawberries (made jam instead)
watch fireworks
go to a drive-in movie
go to Marmon Valley Farms (you ride horses there) 
grow a garden




Wednesday, June 1, 2011

everyone has a story


Everyone has a story

Saturday I took the scenic route home from a photo session.  I took the back, country roads that led me by several farms.

Every time I take that route the voice in my head says, “I wish I had my camera, these animals are beautiful”… and today I did.

I stopped by a farm where I saw a man out front.  I asked him if he minded if I snapped a few photos of his cows, and that I was a photographer.  He told me to go ahead, said he had some goats too if I wanted shots of them.  I told him I might take him up on that offer.

So I crossed the one lane, gravel road to the cows in the pasture.  They seemed just as interested in me as I was in them.  They all swarmed to the metal, rusty fence.  I talked to the cows…  “well hello there… “ and snapped some photos here and there.  Got some great shots.  Thought to myself how I wanted to frame one for my Grandma (she loves cows). 




I walked back up the lane to the farmer and was greeted by his dog.  She looked like a polar bear.  He told me she was harmless and she sniffed me and licked my hand. 

He pointed to the left to another pasture where his goats were.  He started to laugh and told me, “People think goats eat everything… but they don’t!  Look at all that grass in there!”  Then he said, mine are real funny too… see that tire swing?  I catch them swinging on it every now and then.”

A goat swinging on a tire swing?  I had to see this.

He told me he’s always trying to get a photo of it, but hasn’t had much luck.  Then he decided he was going to try to get his goats to play on the tire swing for me.

I was about to tell him don’t worry about it, but he was determined.  I think so I would believe him.  I watched him carry a baby goat to the tire swing while the rest followed.

And wouldn’t you know it… I saw a goat jump onto a tire swing, and swing back and forth before jumping off.  

Of course I didn’t have my camera up to my face because I was too stunned by what I just saw with my own two eyes without looking through a lens.


I laughed so hard, and he laughed too.  I shook his hand and told him my name and he told me his.  I thanked him for letting me shoot his cows and showing me his goats.  We exchanged a few words about living in the country, raising animals and soon I was on my way home.

Now every time I drive by that farm I will have a story to tell.  A unique story about the goats that live there and how I saw it with my own two eyes.  How I met the farmer.  A piece of his story is now mine.  

I’m so glad I stopped today, that I took a chance with a stranger and I’m so glad he decided to share with me.  That he actually took time out of his day to show a complete stranger a piece of his story, a story that I can carry with me.
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