We’re fortunate to live within a stone’s throw of the Morrison Knudsen Nature Center. We walk through their peaceful grounds at least once a week. This week I photographed a few ducks lined up on a tree branch in the water. I love the way it turned out. To me it looks like a watercolor painting.
When researching the saying, “Ducks in a row,” I learned something new. I learned that it comes from from ship building. Who knew?!
It turns out that a “duck” is a device that holds the keel in place while building a ship. The first step in building a ship is to get the ducks in straight row thus ensuring a straight keel.
Conversationally speaking, getting one’s ducks in a row means to ensure that all of the small details or elements are accounted for and in their proper positions before embarking on a new project.
I’m a fan of semi-precious gemstones. I wear citrine on my left hand and turquoise on my right hand and in pendant form. I enjoy the symbolism of both:
CITRINE Also known as the “Light Maker,” the citrine gemstone has a bright yellow hue, which reflects its equally vibrant energy. Like Vitamin C for the soul, the citrine crystal emanates positivity and joy. Its name is derived from the French word for lemon (citron), which carries a sense of sunny and optimistic joie de vivre.
TURQUOISE Turquoise is a French term meaning “Turkish Stone.” It comes from the French phrase pierre turquoise, where “pierre” translates as “stone.” The sea-to-sky energy of turquoise has been prized for centuries in various cultures — from Persian and Egyptian royalty to indigenous people in the Americas (North, Central, and South America) — for its protection from negativity and connection to the purity of natural elements, especially water and air.
I’m currently preparing to present a skill-builder session at the sold-out Women and Leadership conference at Boise State University, so I’ve turned comments off for this post. But if I were available to interact, this week’s internal inventory question would be…
It’s not every day you see a hundred pairs of knee-high wading boots lined up at the ready. But it’s Salmon and Steelhead Days in Boise. A time to celebrate the biology, history, economic, and cultural significance of salmon and steelhead.
During this three day event, the Morrison Knudsen Nature Center hosts 80 classes of 5th graders from 34 schools around the Treasure Valley.
“Kids in the Creek,” is but one of six stations the kids engage in during the event. At this station, they learn about aquatic insects and healthy aquatic ecosystems.
Standing in the driveway waiting for Len to come home, I had the eerie feeling that I was being watched, so I turned around. At first glance, I didn’t see anyone. Upon closer inspection, this is what I saw:
When she saw me see her see me (yes, you read that right), she let out a shriek, “The sky is falling!” At least, that’s how I translated it.
That moment made me laugh. I’m glad I didn’t miss it.
“The moment is where our life takes place. We miss the moment—we miss life.” — John Daido Loori, author of Zen Photography
These are four areas that Len and I decluttered so we can live abundantly:
1. OUR PURSUITS We identified three opportunities that genuinely light us up — that align with our values and strengths — and let go of the rest.
2. OUR RELATIONSHIPS We took an in-depth look at relationships that we want to nurture, including boundaries we set where needed, and habits of engagement that we continue to develop (i.e., listening, appreciating, helping) — and let go of the rest.
3. OUR THOUGHTS We realized that the person we speak with the most is ourself. With that in mind, we make a practice of listening to our internal monologue, then ask ourselves: “Is it true? Is it logical? Is it helpful?” When we come across thoughts that aren’t positive, uplifting, constructive, or healing, we pluck them out like weeds. They don’t have a place in our internal garden.
4. OUR STUFF We eliminated things that aren’t must-haves so that we can enjoy what we truly find pleasure in. I love how Seth Godin puts it:
“The frenzied search for more is a distraction and a place to hide, all in one. Pick the right stones and cherish them as you turn them over. That’s enough.”
As a frequent passenger in my husband’s airplane, I can tell you with certainty (at least to my way of thinking) that an airplane works best when the spinner or nose on the propeller minds its own business—not dipping hither and yon out of curiosity. It’s enough to make a person sick.
Big or small, we don’t like it when other people dip their nose into our business. Similarly, other people don’t like it when we dip our nose into their business.
Hotdog, hothouse, hot tub, hot sauce, and hothead — to name but a few words whose common denominator is “hot.”
On the way home from a trip to Salt Lake City, we stopped at a natural hot spring. I don’t know the exact temperature, but it was far from tepid. In this instance, “hot” was an accurate descriptor. I assure you that I was close to having HOT CROSS BUNS!
While attending a writing retreat in Joshua Tree, California, we took a field trip to enjoy a sound bath at “Integraton” — an unforgettable experience. In addition to a gift shop, multiple hammocks set up for guest naps, and hand-blown glass artwork hanging from the trees, they had other things to capture one’s attention.
In “The Wizard of Oz,” Dorothy Gale’s house is carried by a cyclone from Kansas, over the rainbow, to the magical land of Oz, where it lands on and kills the Wicked Witch of the East who’s wearing Dorothy’s ruby red slippers.
Not a sight you see every day, this was double-take worthy!