In the Garden #SoCS

When the noise of existing

becomes so loud that the

cry of my soul is muted

and the tears I shed

wash over my heart

as the anchor of despair

pulls me  beneath

a sea of dark sorrow,

I remember why I came

to this spinning orb,

Wonderland of diversity-

the challenge of survival

a prime directive.

When all that remains is

living, my need slips into

perspective once more

as Illusion slinks into

the shadows of desire.

Sunlight tingles my skin,

a cool breeze kisses my face

as all of Existence whispers

to my weary being,

”Breathe, rest your mind

and join us in celebration

of this brilliant moment.

Time vanishes when

life is measured in

glorious being.

Can you see it?

Can you hear it?

Can you feel the

drumming of

Nature’s heartbeat?”

I can. I do. And all pain

melts into a river of

the Forgotten once more.

 

Go outside today. Open your eyes. Your ears.

be silent and wait.

 

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Charlotte’s child spinning effortlessly
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Little Green outside the stone barrier
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Hello! I’ve missed you.
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Magic appears when you least expect it.

Allow yourself to be healed.

Don’t just pay lip service to relaxation and rejuvenation.

Have a truly #Free48!

Thanks to Linda Hill’s #SoCS prompt ‘lip’. Visit her place for other great posts and read about this and other fun blog prompts on her site.

And if you had bad service as a consumer this week, check out Dan’s bar post for this week. Customer Service is alive and well in Hartford!

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Lizardry

“Hi, hello there. I heard you were missing your small green Florida pals. I see you’re planting a garden too.”

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“Hmmm….those rose bushes look promising. And salad in a pot? Clever!

Photos? Why certainly you may. Just be sure to get my good side.”

 

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“Do you like this beard? I try to eat well to enhance its brilliant orange hue.

Notice any missing bugs around the house? Yes, well that was me. I hope you don’t mind. I love small spiders and beetles and those-who-shall-not-be-named. Some people are quite sensitive about them.”

 

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I really must be going…
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But I’ll be back. Maybe I’ll bring friends. If you’d like!

 

Oh, I really would, Mr. A. I really would.

Bye-bye!

Nature’s Face/Photography/Poetry

At times I trudge through my life, sometimes with steps as light as air,  yet often as though pulling lead balls chained to my ankles; still,  I find constant comfort in the face of Nature.  We have had a dreary sort of Winter, although the holidays were bright and full. The unrest in the world is palpable, carried on the chilly wind and hanging in the raindrops that seem endless on every weekend that comes around here in Georgia.

Yesterday was a reprieve and I was determined to find solace in the free blessings and gifts of Mother Earth.  The message in her soul is always the same, so clear and encouraging, sometimes more so in those arenas made by humans to showcase her handiwork.

 

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We are here!!!

Each face is as unique as our own, their expression and exuberance so real you can almost hear their voices singing for the change of season.  I believe Nature’s joy in Spring is contagious. Can you hear them?

 

Spring tiptoes in on velvet slippers,

 

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Peering around dark corners and waiting in the shadows,

lest the jealous heart of Jack Frost linger to nip her nose

or sting her toes…

 

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Would that I could soar and fly

on dragon wings into the sky.

the bees might envy me-

I say…

 

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Excuse me, Sir, are you going my way?

 

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Alas, my human body is bound

upon this thawing, sacred ground

called terra firma.

but..

My dreams can fly!

 

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As I peer into the laughing face of Sunshine, teasing us from moment to moment..

 

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I know my thirst will be quenched
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As Nature finds a way
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My cup shall run over again
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A smile insists that hope exists
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And never lonely shall I be

 

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With Nature as my muse, you see?

But vigilance and care must reign

or all was labor thus in vain.

 

We must not let the forever sun set on the Creator’s gift.

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Ask not for whom the bell tolls.

It tolls for thee and me and we,

but never they…

 

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For Nature always finds a way…….

Today’s images brought to you courtesy of the Atlanta Botanical Gardens, an ever evolving transformational vista of living beauty, located right in the heart of an enormous, bustling city.  It can be done when we nurture the spirit of life and give her room to blossom!

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Happy #Free48 everyone.

Logical/#SoCS and the #Free48

You know, when your entire week has seemed liked this….

 

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it is only logical to long for the #Free48, that mystical place where you get to do all you dream of doing during the 5 days that seemed more like the 7,200 minutes that they were. Yes, I am being practical and counting non working hours because we all know our minds remain connected to the job until that glorious moment when we, like children waiting for the bell that heralds recess, punch our tickets and fling our critical thinking to the four winds.

My usual tactic for Friday is to find the nearest good food watering hole and begin the process of necessary amnesia. C’mon, you have to know we tried a new place. It was only logical to check out a venue near my favorite Friday hangout in The Battery, (aka Wahlburgers) just in case our choice proved to be a disappointment. We were not disappointed. Spending the evening sipping some really unique cocktails made with great skill by our bartender, Alex, ended up a great way to end the day. We will defintiely add El Super Pan to our list of favorite places to unwind. We almost felt like we were back in Costa Rica, although it is a Cuban venue. The Cuban sandwich was so good, the bread perfect and my Tostones with a cilantro oil sauce were also great.

 

As to the #Free48, there are no plans as of yet. I need to do some serious writing and there are a few practical things to consider, like whether we keep watching our resident chipmunk continue his methodical melee’ on our tomatoes or take action. 😕

 

Well, at least the butterflies enjoy the spoils….

So, whether you prefer mystical, whimsical, magical posts or lean more to logic, do check out our host’s page. Linda Hill serves up some challenging and fun prompts each week for us.  For comic relief and logical info, check out Dan’s place. He is the IT and history guru.

And now…..drumroll please……..for my Victory moment this week!

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I did NOT eat one of these…..

(although I did look at them at least three times) 

Ahhhh….progess, and an awesome end to a somewhat chaotic week. Thank you, Linda!

This prompt reminds me of one of my favorite songs by one of our favorite bands.

I’m Late!

I’m late, I’m late….

 

I promised I would post the result of my hush puppy trial yesterday but never got around to it. I must apologize but it was with good reason. I was having fun!

We were fortunate to be able to get out during a reprieve from our recent rains to make a return trip to the Botanical Garden and found a new spot that we totally missed on our first trip. We found a couple of new friends there!

 

 

More on that later….on to the hush puppies.

I actually like this recipe more than most others I have tried because it gives more of a light, cornbread texture-and they are good cold as well! The inside is light and fluffy while the outside maintains a nice crispy texture.  They were perfect with the breaded shrimp we had alongside.  Time was short so we opted for a prepared shrimp that only needed cooking.  Next time, the real deal.  Honestly, I avoid frying anything very often so this was a special occasion.  When I do fry it is normally only pan frying in a small amount of oil.  This requires the full monty, however, and so we did.

 

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Hush puppies cooling their jets..
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These breaded shrimp came from the grocery freezer..not like homemade but sufficient
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Nice platter yes?
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Crispy outside, light inside. Perfect with butter!

 

We made a significant dent in this platter.  My plate was clean!

 

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Who would think there was room for dessert? Well, how could we resist fresh, juicy mango with whipped cream?

 

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Yeah….we had to wait a few minutes before tackling the mess in the kitchen. 😂

 

Would I change the recipe in any way?  For me, the white cornmeal is a bit too fine so I would try to find a self rising yellow or make my own.  I might even substitute some yellow corn flour in place of the whole purpose flour in the recipe.  I added cayenne or perhaps you might like fresh jalapeño.  The green onions were great and I added some well drained diced red pimiento, or you could use finely chopped fresh sweet pepper.  It’s your cornbread, after all! The buttermilk definitely made the texture perfect for me.  I hope you guys let me know how yours turn out.  In case you missed my last post, with the recipe, you can find it here.

Meanwhile….back in the garden….

 

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Doesn’t he look just tickled? Exactly how I feel when I am there! Sans frogs in hand….

 

Maybe he’s thinking frog legs with hush puppies….🙊

 

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Savoring the moments….

 

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“We have to stop meeting like this,” I whispered.  He said he would be there waiting until next time.

I promise to share more of our #Free48 later on.  I hope yours is unfolding splendidly!

Come Away With Me…

I’m not sure about you, but I could use a nice walk outside today in the sunshine.  Since that isn’t likely for many of us during the rains and storms, I thought I would share a bit more from the Garden of Delights.  The Atlanta Botanical Garden is an amazing place. Enjoy a walk with me and a view from the top of the hump day hill.  It’s quite nice up here! 🙂

 

 

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Until next time…..

This post brought to you by #1LinerWednesday. Stop on over to Linda Hill’s place for more great posts and the rules for this little midweek bit of fun.

 

Hidden

Once upon a time…..

 

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In the middle of a noisy, bustling and crowded metropolis, lay a hidden kingdom.  Behind the gates and beyond the woods, in the shadows of the stone garden, a princess was locked into dreamless sleep under the watchful eyes of a fiercely magnificent dragon…..

 

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The megalopolis known as Atlanta
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The dragon towers over….
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the still, sleeping princess
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Ever watchful
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he is magnificently terrifying.

 

Meanwhile, beneath the glare of the midday sun, Poseidon’s daughter sun’s herself in the cool fountain waters as she gazes wistfully into the mists of sweet memory-the ocean and freedom.

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Her comfort in the pool where she waits…

 

Yet her beauty is rivaled by the rising Phoenix, spreading its glorious wings in welcome of the admirers awaiting a small miracle from the kingdom’s most beloved creature.  Beneath its gaze lies the tavern of sustenance and indulgent delights.

 

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The rising Phoenix
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Very decent food in the LongLeaf restaurant
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Hot rolls and cool beverages, both wonderful

 

Weary travelers make their way to this oasis constantly….

 

 

Venturing deeper into the lush gardens, there appears from mists of the past, a great and treasured beast…..

 

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She whispered of the miracle within the heart of her world.  After traversing winding trails over bridges and and rails, we found the goddess who protects and showers the kingdom with loving tender care.

 

 

She cares for its many living wonders with gentle adoration and appreciation….

 

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Behold!  The Green Emperor! Master of the Orchid House.

 

 

Beyond the Orchid House lay the tropical rain forest, filled with lush mystery….

 

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And lo and behold there he was…..my prince!

 

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Well…..he had potential.  As he serenaded me I thought to give him a quick kiss!  Alas….

 

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This was as good as it got.  So we put our heads together and decided our worlds were too different…..

The Zen garden was lovely as well. I made a couple of new friends there too.

 

 

And then there was the magic of glass sculpture…oh my!!

 

 

Alas it was time to leave the kingdom but we made a map so that we could return again….and again. Weary, but satisfied, we left the magic and wonder with tired feet and full spirits.

If you are ever in Atlanta, take a detour from the hustle and bustle and visit the magical kingdom….