Tuesday, February 15, 2011

A new adventure begins today...

Check out my new 'travel blog' at http://offthebeatenpathwithtanya.blogspot.com/


“I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move.” ~ Robert Louis Stevenson


Sunday, February 13, 2011

Saying Goodbye

Today I want to talk about 'saying goodbye' as it relates to moving forward from one place in our lives to another. Whether one is actually physically changing locale or simply changing jobs or schools or moving forward in one's life the very action of moving on almost always includes 'saying goodbye'.

Throughout my life I have said 'Goodbye' many times and in many ways. The first and hardest for me was saying 'Goodbye' to my dad when he passed from this world shortly after my 15th birthday. He had fought long and hard not to leave us, however, his time had inevitably come. I never really got to physically say goodbye to him as he was taken to the hospital in an unconscious state and never regained consciousness...still I had to let him go. During the ensuing years I have 'said goodbye' to many other loved ones...grandparents, friends, and my own dear mom...this kind of 'goodbye' never gets easier, it is just part of life. We learn to deal with it and move on. We never stop missing these people whom we have said a final goodbye to. Personally I do not believe it is so final as I know we will meet again one day, still it is hard to say.

The next big 'Goodbye' for me was leaving the place I was born in and called home for the first 25 years of my life...the small desert town of Palmdale California. It was not really hard, I knew I could come back and visit and I looked forward to starting a new life in a different place with new family and friends (I had just married my husband who was from Georgia). The most difficult part was saying goodbye to friends and family and a community that I had been a part of all of my life until then. I kept in touch with some friends and family for a while then gradually lost contact for many years until recently when I began to search for a couple of friends from my childhood. That search led me to not only finding those few but a whole big group of old friends, family and a community of people I had thought lost forever. For this I thank the Internet, Classmates dot com and Facebook...and have learned the truth of the statement 'Goodbyes are not forever'.

The third kind of 'saying goodbye' involves leaving behind a job, old habits, things that for one reason or another no longer work for us. Some jobs I have been glad to say goodbye to, others cause some sadness. Most recently I have had to say this sort of goodbye...having worked at a small tea room/cafe, The Baron York, for the past 6 1/2 years. This was a 'job' I truly loved! I enjoyed everything about it...the intimacy of the place, and with the people, both those I worked for and with, and those I served. I loved dressing up for work, preparing the food, even the cleaning. I loved the town (still do) where this place was located, loved my drive to work. So it is, for me, a very hard 'goodbye'...and what makes it even harder is the suddenness of it. Oh I suppose I should have seen it coming...as with most small businesses the economy has dealt it many blows, I knew the struggles because they were a daily part of it all...I just kept hoping, praying and believing that it would turn around...until the phone call came that told me it was over. Mostly what made it hard is that my services were no longer needed even through the last few weeks to closing. I understand the reasons, however they do not change the fact that I have not had a chance to say a proper 'Goodbye'...especially to the customers I had come to know and love...many of whom I will not likely see again. Of course I have been through this before with other jobs, other places, other times...still it doesn't make this time easier. So, if some of you who were customers of the Baron York are reading here I want to say how much I enjoyed meeting you, getting to know you, and serving you...it has truly been a most pleasurable experience for me. I hope perhaps some day we will meet again...I will begin work in March at 'Annie's At Alley's a small market/deli in Lakemont Ga...not sure what my hours will be, but maybe some of you will come by and have a sandwich or just check it out. I will also be exhibiting some of my photographic art in a couple of galleries in the area in the near future so perhaps I will see you there. And again...I have loved my time working at The Baron York Tea Room & Cafe...I will miss being there and serving all of you.

And so it is time to say 'Goodbye' to that part of my life...time to move on to new adventures.

"Don't be dismayed at goodbyes. A farewell is necessary before you can meet again. And meeting again, after moments or lifetime, is certain for those who are friends." ~ Richard Bach


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Seasons of Life

Spring is just around the corner and, as can be seen in the banner here, I am counting down the days to my favorite season. That being said, I must also say that I have thoroughly enjoyed our cold, wet, white winter here this year. I have always loved the snow and look forward with much anticipation when the weather forecasters begin discussing the possibility of the 'S' word.

Once again this morning we awoke to the magical white world of winter for the 4th time this season...that has got to be a record for Georgia. We generally get one (2 if we are really lucky) good snows a year...usually around the end of January, or first of February...this season however it began with a White Christmas! That first snow brought about 3 inches of beautiful powdery white snow that would remain on the ground in some places for almost a week. The second snow came Jan. 10...6 to 12 inches...and basically shut down half the state of Georgia. Since then we have had another small dusting around the end of January and now this morning we woke to about an inch on the ground. Each of our snows this season have had their own special beauty...and today was no exception. Even though there were bare spots on the ground the snow clung to every branch and blade of grass. It was a wondrous site.

One of the reasons I love the snow is that it transforms an otherwise barren and bleak winter landscape into a magical and beautiful place. It is a place of stillness and beauty, a place where imagination can run wild and free or one can simply enjoy the silence. Even the disruptions it causes in our busy lives are to me a welcome respite from the day to day chores, a pause from running to and fro to 'accomplish' all the tasks that we seem to think we need to accomplish. So I am grateful for these beautiful breaks God sends to us during the winter months...I enjoy them in all their beauty, from the time I see the first flake fall from the sky until the last patch has melted from the ground in our shaded meadow. And as I enjoy this beautiful creation I remember that each snowflake is unique just as each of us are...no 2 alike, all created by God to be unique and special.


“To get up each morning with the resolve to be happy is to set our own conditions to the events of each day. To do this is to condition circumstances instead of being conditioned by them.” ~ Ralph Waldo Trine

PHOTO OF THE DAY: Today is a 2-photo day.


Monday, February 7, 2011


The excitement is building! The adventure is beginning! Plans are being made! Stay tuned for updates...

QUOTE OF THE DAY: Excerpt from Illusions by Richard Bach
'The Savior'

"Once there lived a village of creatures along the bottom of a great crystal river.

The current of the river swept silently over them all - young and old, rich and poor, good and evil, the current going its own way, knowing only its own crystal self.

Each creature in its own manner clung tightly to the twigs and rocks at the river bottom, for clinging was their way of life, and resisting the current what each had learned from birth.

But one creature said at last, 'I am tired of clinging. Though I cannot see it with my eyes, I trust that the current knows where it is going. I shall let go, and let it take me where it will. Clinging, I shall die of boredom.'

The other creatures laughed and said, 'Fool! Let go, and that current you worship will throw you tumbled and smashed across the rocks, and you shall die quicker than boredom!'

But the one heeded them not, and taking a breath did let go, and at once was tumbled and smashed by the current across the rocks.

Yet in time, as the creature refused to cling again, the current lifted him free from the bottom, and he was bruised and hurt no more.

And the creatures downstream, to whom he was a stranger, cried, 'See a miracle! A creature like ourselves, yet he flies! See the Messiah, come to save us all!'

And the one carried in the current said, 'I am no more Messiah than you. The river delights to lift us free, if only we dare let go. Our true work is this voyage, this adventure.'"


Sunday, January 30, 2011


As most of you know I am a photographer...Early one morning while sitting in my back yard area, camera in hand, I began to look up and found myself thinking about how different things looked from that perspective. This led to walking through my yard with my lens pointed upward or downward or in front or behind and adjusting the focus to each perspective. I found that the same thing looked quite different if I were laying on my belly on the ground as opposed to laying on my back, or sitting in a chair looking upward or outward. It also depended on where I was standing and which direction I was looking from...the same item, scene, image changed as my perspective shifted.
This shifting camera perspective started me thinking about my perspective on life. I have been told many times though out my life that I 'view life through rose colored glasses'. I would definitely say that I am a 'glass half full' type person, an optimist in most situations...I think this is due to my perspective on life. I thought about where that perspective came from, how I reached the conclusions I have reached. I kept thinking that no matter what one's situation, circumstances, challenges might be it is all about the perspective from which one views them...this is what makes life wonderful...or not.
I remembered a quote from one of my favorite books, Illusions by Richard Bach...

"Perspective- Use it or Lose It. If you turned to this page, you're forgetting that what is going on around you is not reality. Think about that."

I did think about that...I thought about what 'reality' really is, how we create our own reality, how we live in that reality...and how our perspective changes our reality with time. I grew up on the California desert, an 'only child' of sorts (both my older brothers were married by the time I was born), the child of 'older' parents (Dad was 56 and Mom 40 when I was born), we attended church regularly, my mom's family was close-knit yet lived miles apart, my dad's family lived close by but weren't 'close', my dad and both brothers served in the military...all of these things and many more played a part in the formation of my basic belief system, as has living in the southeast, being married, being a mom, being a grandmom. Each time my life undergoes some change...my perspective changes. As I grow older...my perspective changes. If I lose something or someone...my perspective changes. If I see someone suffering...my perspective changes. As I move through life I believe it is important to look at things from varying angles, different vantage points...to listen to others when they express their opinions, share their fears, sorrows, joys, experiences...and to keep my own thoughts positive, and my words encouraging. To speak from my perspective and also try to see things from the perspective of others.

Life is all in the perspective you take on it. ~ Jonathan Lockwood Huie
People only see what they are prepared to see. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

PHOTO OF THE DAY: 'Looking Up"

Friday, January 28, 2011

Moving On

Well, as you can see it has been sometime since I last posted here. Turning 60 yesterday has got me thinking that perhaps it is time to revive this blog. I've been pretty busy in the 2 years since that last post...working in a little Tea Room/Cafe, for the Census Bureau, and at a cool little market & deli, learning the ropes of being a grandmother, and taking lots and lots of photographs. I've also done a little writing and had a couple of articles published in a local magazine...and I'm hoping to do more of that. I'm not anywhere near ready to 'retire'...however, I am starting a new chapter of my life. It is this 'moving on' I want to share here.

Change has always been a bit of a fearful thing for me...I don't much like it. When I find a place I like I want to stay there forever...whether it is house, town, job or just a comfortable place in life...unfortunatly in many instances that just isn't possible...things change. And so it is that as I turn 60 and begin a new decade of my life I also find myself looking for new employment opportunites, new ways to stay involved in my community. The Tea Room Cafe where I have worked for 7 years is closing...I am sad, I loved it there, it was the perfect job...good hours, pleasant atmosphere, wonderful customers. I loved dressing up to go to work. Loved serving Tea and scones, helping folks celebrate birthdays, anniversaries or just being alive. I still have my job at the market/deli...and I love it too...good hours - check, pleasant atmosphere - check, wonderful customers - check...all good, just different...the new perfect job. The only problem is I am not sure how long it will last...nothing lasts forever...except...

God's love and support. And it is with His help I will move on...to new adventures.

QUOTE OF THE DAY: "Here is the test to find whether your mission on earth is finished...If you are alive, it isn't." ~ Richard Bach

IMAGE OF THE DAY: Our home covered in snow

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Sunday Morning Reflections

It is a beautiful morning here in the NE Georgia mountains...cool and crisp, partly cloudy with the promise of a beautiful day. Living here is a constant reminder to me of all of the wonderful gifts our Heavenly Father has given us...I am privileged to observe the beauty of nature and to feel the Father's presence and feel His great love surrounding me here.
This past week I came upon a book I would like to share with all of you...it is called "So You Don't Want To Go To Church Anymore". The title alone spoke volumes in regards to my current feelings about 'attending' church in the traditional way. From childhood through my early 20's I was a regular church-goer...as an adult I have become increasingly dissatisfied and disillusioned with the church and religion although my faith in God and my relationship with him remains strong.
At times I have felt somewhat ashamed of not regularly attending church and have 'tried out' a few, never really fitting in for long and eventually becoming dissatisfied and finally drifting away again.
I'm sure there are many other's out there who feel the same...I hope that this book will be an inspiration to all...


Our Father's love is big and constant and COMPLETELY UNCONDITIONAL.

God Bless You.