Words for Wednesday: the mountain

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Camp on the trek up Mt. Kilimanjaro

When a mountain towers over us, some of us find ourselves immovable. Others are motivated to climb that mountain to the very top and shout, “I did it!”

Some of us are challenged by what seems a daunting task. Others dig down deep, find inspiration and motivation to keep moving onward and upward.

“Mountains know secrets we need to learn. That it might take time, it might be hard, but if you just hold on long enough, you will find the strength to rise up.”  ~ Tyler Knott

If you didn’t get a chance to read my oldest daughter’s story about developing perseverance while climbing Mount Kilimanjaro five years ago, please click here.

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Getting a little closer

Today I’m sharing some of her photos from that amazing journey she took – the one which not only challenged her physically but mentally as well. I’m proud to say she tackled that mountain both ways and found inner strength while doing so.

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Nearing the summit at daybreak

I hope you also can face whatever challenge before you, tackle your own mountains, and reach the rewarding summit.

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The summit

“Every mountain top is within reach if you just keep climbing.”~ Barry Finlay

©2020 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com

Words for Wednesday: morning has broken

blogIMG_1336That tune, that old tune from back in the day, always comes to my mind when I see a sunrise.

I don’t always get to view the sun rise in the east. The way our home is situated on our plot of ground, sunrise is hidden from us by a hill.

So, even if I’m awake and up, I don’t necessarily see those beautiful hues of color painted across the morning sky as this side of the world awakens because by the time the sun crests that hill, some of the colors and beauty have dissipated.

Sunsets are a different story. We are privy to some pretty spectacular ones right off our backyard deck, but that’s another story. This one is about the rising of the sun when Morning Has Broken comes to my mind.

When my eyes do partake of a sunrise, I am always enthralled by its beauty. By the way the sun’s rays shine down through the clouds onto earth. By the palette of color presented before us.

And my mind starts to sing, “Morning has broken, like the first morning…” The version I know so well and remember playing on the piano as a teenager was made well-known by recording artist Cat Stevens in the early 1970’s.

But long before his rendition became popular, Morning Has Broken was published in 1931 as a Christian hymn. The words were written by an English author named Eleanor Farjeon and set to Scottish Gaelic music titled Bunessan, facts I never knew until recently.

Several mornings while walking with one of my best friends, we are treated to a sunrise. And those words, “morning has broken” arise in my memory as the sun shows its glory in the eastern sky.

But sunrises give way to even more words in my mind than simply morning has broken. Words I want to share with you on this Words for Wednesday here at Mama’s Empty Nest.

“Next time a sunrise steals your breath or a meadow of flowers leave you speechless, remain that way. Say nothing, and listen as Heaven whispers, do you like it? I did it just for you.” ~ Max Lucado

Each time I experience a sunrise, no matter where I am, my thoughts turn to God, the Creator of those magnificent occurrences. The following quotes portray my thoughts in words more aptly that I possibly can:

“If you want to be reminded of the love of the Lord, just watch the sunrise.” ~ Jeannette Walls in Half Broke Horses

 After a long, dark night, perhaps one of those sleepless nights that seem to be endless as you toss and turn or worry over a situation or problem, sunrise serves as a balm to your soul – a reason for hope as you embrace a new day.

“There was never a night or a problem that could defeat sunrise or hope.” ~ Bernard Williams

And sunrises are perfect inspiration for those who have a creative bent – photographers, writers, painters, and poets.

“After God perfected the sunrise, he created photographers, artists, and poets to ensure his feat remained immortal.” ~ Terri Guillemets

Sunrises are spectacular. They are worth awakening early in the morning just to watch the sun rise on those days when it’s visible. I can’t think of a better way to embrace a new year before us than by witnessing a beautiful sunrise.

“Sunrise looks spectacular in nature; sunrise looks spectacular in the photos; sunrise looks spectacular in our dreams; sunrise looks spectacular in the paintings, because it really is spectacular!” ~ Mehmet Murat ildan

©2020 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com

 

 

Words for Wednesday: The Reason

blogIMG_1523This beautiful stained glass window portrays the story of the birth of Jesus Christ from one visit to another.

The first visit was from an angel telling the virgin Mary she would experience a miraculous birth, the birth of a Savior. The last visit was a couple of years later when Wise Men followed a new and bright star in the sky to visit the Christ Child bringing him gifts.

If you don’t know this amazing story, I hope you can find a Bible to read the narrative. Or you can just search the internet for one of the Biblical accounts. Look up “Luke 1:26 through Luke 2:30.”

My hope is that if you’ve never heard about Jesus, who He is, how He was born, and for what purpose, you will understand the meaning of this photo after you’ve read or heard that passage of Scripture.  It’s why we, who are Christians, celebrate this holiday named Christmas.  

For those of you who know the Nativity Story, may you pause in all your busyness to remember what this season is truly intended for – to commemorate the birth of a Savior, whose name is Jesus Christ, Son of God (His divinity) yet Son of Man (His humanity).

“Who can add to Christmas? The perfect motive is that God so loved the world. The perfect gift is that He gave His only Son. The only requirement is to believe in Him. The reward of faith is that you shall have everlasting life.” ~ Corrie Ten Boom

©2019 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com

Words for Wednesday: dear Santa

blogIMG_0023.jpgA trip to a nearby farm to choose a real Christmas tree for daughter and granddaughter also provided a fun visit to see Santa Claus. And an opportunity to write him a Christmas letter. blogIMG_0053

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blogIMG_0061Our little one truly has been very good this year so I imagine those special wishes she whispered to Santa just might be fulfilled.

“Dear Santa, I hope you and your elves been very busy, because I’ve been very good.” ~ unknown

©2019 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com

Words for Wednesday: Mackinac Island horses

blogIMG_9554They are everywhere you look on Mackinac Island – the powerful, strong horses. They pull buggies loaded with sightseers; wagons loaded with supplies; shuttle carriages with hotel guests settled behind glass; they even haul the street cleaner.

Take a look at the various shots I captured of these beautiful creatures hard at work during our autumn journey to this quaint and picturesque island in Lake Huron, Michigan.

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“Where in this wide world can man find nobility without pride,

Friendship without envy,

Or beauty without vanity?

Here, where grace is served with muscle

And strength by gentleness confined…” 

~ Ronald Duncan, “The Horse,” 1954

©2019 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com

Words for Wednesday: a room with a view

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Night time view of Lake Huron

Little did I realize what was behind that curtain.

It was dark and rainy when we checked into our hotel in the town of St. Ignace, Michigan. Tired from our day of sightseeing in Dearborn and then the hours-long drive to the Upper Peninsula, we were more than ready to just relax and unwind.

After settling in a bit, I went to the hotel window like I usually do on our journeys to see what kind of view there was. I absolutely did not expect to see what I saw.

First of all, I was just a bit concerned as I drew open the drapery to find the window was actually a sliding glass door which opened to a small patio. Not that disconcerting unless you were on the lower level, which we were. 

Then I wondered why it was so very dark outside. I knew it was nighttime and raining but it was really pitch dark, no lights to be seen from the view whatsoever. I expected some lights from houses or perhaps other hotels or businesses, but what greeted me was sheer inkiness.

So I switched the porch light on and voilà! There it was – a view of one of the Great Lakes – Lake Huron to be exact. And our lower level room in the center of that hotel wing had a perfect view.

Nothing else in sight but the lake and a string of lawn chairs facing it. What a nice spot to sit and just relax, think, rest, ponder.

But of course, it was nighttime and raining…and did I mention it was a bit on the chilly side?

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My husband viewing the sunrise on Lake Huron

On our second morning at this hotel, I awakened early and then it dawned on me that a new day was also dawning outside and I could probably catch the sunrise on the lake.

Again, I pulled open that curtain, stepped outside, and took in the spectacular view as the sun was just beginning to rise in the east.

By mid-morning, there was yet another lovely view outside that room.

blogIMG_9524A room with a view. What more could we have asked for? And what a view it was. I’m so thankful I opened that curtain.

My experience is a bit like life isn’t it? We travel along on our life journey but don’t know what surprises await us just around the corner or just within our reach if we open ourselves up to the experience.

Open the curtain and enjoy the view. I think I learned a valuable lesson on the shore of Lake Huron.

“Somewhere on your journey, don’t forget to turn around and enjoy the view.” ~ unknown

©2019 mamasemptynest.wordpress.com

Words for Wednesday: A Glass Full

blogIMG_9150 (2)That day, the glass was completely full. Not half-empty, not half-full, but full to the brim. Full of color, full of sparkle, full of beauty.

During our recent journey to Michigan, Papa and I spent an entire day touring the Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation in Dearborn admiring treasures from the common to the famous. The entire museum is absolutely a treasure trove.

My museum and history loving spouse reveled in each section of the facility and I found more than enough to whet my appetite for taking photos.

Some of the most beautiful exhibits are housed in the Davidson-Gerson Modern Glass Gallery of the Henry Ford.

Enthralling and intriguing works of art made entirely of glass provided many ohs and ahs from both of us as we viewed the displays.

The old saying, “A picture is worth a thousand words,” proves most appropriate since I can’t even begin to describe in words how intricate and amazing the glass art we observed was.

So I’ll show you just a few of the pieces we appreciated.  It was a challenge getting photos of the glass art encased behind glass, but I think you’ll still enjoy these. 

I can’t imagine the creativity, ingenuity, and amount of time it took to create these glass sculptures.

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Davidson-Gerson Modern Glass Gallery  in the Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation

“I can’t imagine a world without glass.” ~ Jamie Hyneman, MythBusters co-host

©2019 mamasemptynest,wordpress.com