Thursday Thoughts – Outing on Mother’s Day

This year the sun was shining and we spent a fine day together. Biking to a local greenhouse with an amazing bloom of cacti and geraniums. And millions of tadpoles – and a leech. I do love tadpoles, we always let some grow up in a big bowl, and then let them out when all four legs had arrived. A nature’s wonder. Leeches though…naaah. Not one of my favourites…

Mirror, mirror, on the wall, now…

For Debbie’s SixWordSaturday. The photo was taken through a stained glass mirror.

Thursday Thoughts – Morning Walk

Some mornings are better than others…

Crisp air
Happy dogs –
– and people!

Lens-Artists Challenge #131 – Emotions

This week, Patti is our host, and LAPC#131 gives us the opportunity to focus on Emotions. We can do portraits or street photography – or, choose a subject or scene that evokes an emotion in the viewer.

Flowers are restful to look at. They have neither emotions nor conflicts. – Sigmund Freud


No flowers this time… In my opener, I have chosen rippling water in a soothingly green environment – Madeira’s levadas. Green is always recommended for bedrooms because of its calming effect – and that is the emotion I get whenever I meet the colour Green.

My images here will show maybe one main emotion – happiness. But, also love and friendship.

I cannot think of better choices than students and the storm of feelings on their graduation day. It’s impossible to get enough of their happy faces and their vivid body language!

After three years of hard work – High School graduation! These used to be my happiest days – sharing their joy.

Two of the photos are of my daughter. Now I am maybe being too personal…, but seeing her walking up the stairs last Friday as a freshly baked Doctor – filled my heart with pride. She looks so happy, so confident – so ready for a working life outside university.

Happiness lies in the joy of achievement and the thrill of creative effort. —Franklin D. Roosevelt

And, don’t we all feel that for our children, for their first steps into this world, for our students and for every person who have worked hard and reached their goal? (For making tears fall it is even enough reading a good book where the hero succeeds…) I am very grateful to have met so many students in my life – and to have left them as fully fledged young men and women.

Looking back at last week, thank you Anne Sandler, for It’s a Small World, which made us all see the beauty in little things. And thank you for the fabulous macro/micro and close-up images from all of your collections!

I, Leya/Ann-Christine, will be your host for LAPC #132 next Saturday, January 23rd at noon. So, stay tuned… and for all of you in the USA – may the inauguration go smoothly.

Now we are looking forward to seeing Your emotional images! Be sure to link them to Patti’s beautiful examples, and don’t forget the Lens-Artists tag. As always – stay safe and well and mind the little things until next time.

Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. —The Dalai Lama

Lens-Artists Challenge #128 – And Here Comes the Holiday Season…

A strange, surreal Holiday Season. For many of us, it will be very different from earlier years.

I know many creative plans are being made to make these celebrations work – somehow and anyway. This last LAPC challenge, of the strange year 2020, is all about your Holiday Season. So what will your holidays look like? What are your plans and/or memories? Will you create new traditions or will you just ”survive” this one, looking forward to a ”normalized” celebrating next year?

For me, the holidays are all about Christmas – memories of Christmases gone by and what Christmas really, essentially means to me. What traditions can still be kept this year, and what will I have to let go of…

Well, let us begin… be my guest!

”So this is Christmas…” – John Lennon and Yoko Ono – is always present when we are decorating the Christmas tree. In Sweden we celebrate Christmas, even though not many of us are truly religious. But the message is much the same – Imagine… Wishes for Peace and Harmony. Caring for family and each other – Love for everything living. Gratitude.

One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and, if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable words.
― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

To me, Christmas also means discussing, listening to music and playing games together. Happy music, classical music, religious music…

Street music, Lodz
Piano a’ la Yayoi Kusama

Candle light was made for these the darkest days of winter. Lights in our windows are glowing the whole day – to chase the darkness away. Today’s sunrise was 8.34 AM – and sunset 15.35 PM. No complaining when I compare to my daughter Emma’s situation in Umeå: 9.27 AM and 13.45 PM. (But where I live, the sun has not shown its face for the last two months.)

Adding – just listening to the news it seems people are decorating their houses double up this year – I too bought new lights for the path up to our door…75 meters!

Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared. – Buddha

So far, these holidays look much the same as every year. But, Imagine Covid19 was over and gone …. then more of the happy celebrating would come alive – Going to Denmark for delicious food, coffee and cake, attending Christmas markets, traveling to beautiful places, finding snow again – at least for the Christmas card photos… and having the youngsters back for baking, laughing and pottering!

Luckily we Will have three youngsters here with us this holiday season – which makes me truly happy. Corona safe, no hugging or kissing. I know many families with mixed generations have booked barbecue places to eat outdoors in recreation areas. A very good idea.

The greatest differences will be the lack of hugs and kisses. And, our mother and grandmother will not be here with us to celebrate. Her photo is standing where she used to sit at the table, with a candle lit by her side. Maybe she Is watching us somehow, from somewhere. I’d like to think she is.

The much longed for light will slowly return, starting with the Winter Solstice, December 21. This year has made it crystal clear just how much we have to be grateful for – and how little we can take for granted.

Please include a link to my post and use the Lens-Artists tag so that everyone can find your post in the WP Reader. We look very much forward to seeing your creative work!

Special thanks to Amy for her beautiful “Precious Moments.” And thank You for sharing with us so many positive and loving moments! Smiles and tears in a beautiful mix.

Finally we send our deepest and most grateful Thank You to you all for being an endless inspirational resource this special year, 2020. Hopefully we have helped each other stay reasonably sane in a crazy world. I want to close with John Lennon’s words in:

Happy Xmas (War is Over)

………………………………………..

A very Merry Christmas
And a happy New Year
Let’s hope it’s a good one
Without any fear

……………………………………….

– someday soon we hope this invisible enemy, Corona and Covid19, will be defeated too –

Have you seen these:

KFBuchsbaum posted a Christmas card treasure

Big and small moments with Mei-Mei of Jedi by Night

Get starstruck at David M’s Photoblog

Announcement:  We’ll be on break until January 2nd at which point our theme will be Favorite Photos of 2020.

Short Note: There have been issues with WP pingbacks not working. If you don’t receive a reply or a comment from us, please let us know.

Thursday Thoughts – Foggy Days Forever?

Can you feel it?

The need for crisp air and eyelifting skies? Totti enjoying a frosty morning some years ago – so fresh in the air…so easy to walk.

Right now I don’t need any more grey days – and Emma is not here to brighten them up…

Today was announced on the news, that November and December were the darkest ever in Sweden since they started measuring hundreds of years ago. So little sun and so little light. Stockholm didn’t have a single sunny hour in these last 7 weeks.

Grey can be beautiful – but not every day for two months – and there are three more to go before early Spring.

But in less than two weeks The Winter Solstice will be here. I can’t tell you how much we need it!

Thursday Thoughts – Younger Days

Walking, walking…One of the last colourful days, I decided to walk along an old road I used to walk in my younger days – in the 1980’s. I had a friend living at the end of the road, and I believe she still is.

One of the old farms was in ruins due to a fire some years ago. The remains looks beautiful still.

Even bird houses have them…
And Milo loved the stone fences – of course. He gets a nice treat when he is climbing up on top of something. Spoilt young man…
So, Milo and I have a lot in common… many stones climbed and so many fences defied – this was a big part of being a child in a rural landscape. No playing indoors – always outdoors in the fresh air.
No matter how much we tried – we still couldn’t conjure up the sleepy sun this day – but memories of childhood days danced like autumn leaves in the air. Golden and light as feathers. Today my grandfather was born, 117 years ago.

Lens-Artists Challenge #124 – Now and Then

Now and then – Then and now

Nothing is ever really lost to us as long as we remember it.
― L.M. Montgomery

Amy is our host, and she says: ”For our challenge this week we’d like you to tell us about your perspective on now vs then – it could be before and after the pandemic or any other changes you have experienced.” See her perspective on what the current changes can bring to everyday life!

As I was contemplating what major differences there are in my own life now, compared to a few years ago, some things stand out very clearly to me. I will try letting the images tell most of the story, as you change between Then and now, Now and then in my series. ( A new possibility with the block editor – but you have to go to my site to see it. I found out it doesn’t show in the reader …) Somehow I wish it was just as easy to mend things that are broken…

Due to climate change, our winters here in Sweden are very different from those we had only a couple of years ago. These two images are from November 2017 and November 2020.

Two of my best loved hiking trails have been destroyed. The forest is down. Colourful grasses are now taking over, and soon the old stumps will be totally hidden in the new vegetation.

Traveling is no longer an option, due to Covid19 and the pandemic. But, also in order to save the world from more air pollution. Instead of exploring exciting new places abroad, this autumn we built my much longed for glasshouse, where we greatly enjoy a quiet lunch every day.

Ever since I was a child, the forest has been my second home. I usually walk for hours every day, often in the company of my mother and my dogs (in this photo, Mille and Totti). In Spring we always pick wood anemonies and have ”fika” with coffee and cakes in the warm sunshine. Mille left us 2014 and my mother, this unruly year, 2020.

And all the lives we ever lived and all the lives to be are full of trees
and changing leaves.

― Virginia Woolf (To the Lighthouse)

Changes are obvious to us all this year… and now we are looking forward to seeing Your perspective! Don’t forget to include a link to Amy’s post and use the Lens-Artists tag so that everyone can find you in the WP Reader. Next week, Tina will be our host for Challenge #125 on November 28th. Be sure to visit her site.

Lastly – Thank you for sending us so many delightful walks through neighbourhoods all over the world! It has been an adventurous week, a glorious and expressive week. As always – We are grateful that you want to share your world so generously.

Thinking of you who are celebraing Thanksgiving, and to all of us – Take care, stay warm, loving and safe.

Lens Artists Photo Challenge #118 – Communication

Thank you, Amy, for last week’s Photo Walk – a fun challenge with walks all over the world, that I unfortunately couldn’t follow as much as I wanted. But I will be back – soon.

Hosting this week is clever Biasini and Ma Leueen – so, I will take the opportunity to show you something of my world – a dog’s world. My name is Milo, and I live with Totti, Ann-Christine and her family in southern Sweden.

During the summers my Emma is home and goes playing and swimming with me – I love her SO much that I will do everything she asks me to do… Can you see how we even take the same pose before jumping in?
When in doubt…I search her eyes for advice – or maybe sometimes it is the other way around…
…but, I often let her go in first. In case it is a trap…
When we are back home again, with friends visiting – Totti and I have to check out if the guest (or intruder) is a good guy or not.

In my family we don’t do competitions anymore, but my pal, Totti, used to win many prizes in his youth. He is a Swedish and Danish Champion. In the header, he is the winner of such a competition. I can tell you that, in order to reach a top position, you have to communicate well with your handler (as they call the human running with you in the ring).

A great companion he is anyway, Totti. We both know exactly what the other one wants or wants not. Mostly we want the same thing though…and that could have meant big trouble, if we hadn’t been able to communicate wisely and read the signs. I can only urge all of you to work hard on it – Communication. If you don’t manage that well enough, your life will be much more complicated – sometimes hardly manageable.

Finally, our sincere thanks to Biasini and Ma Leueen, for guest hosting this week’s very interesting challenge. We all look forward to seeing your creative responses. Please remember to link them to their original post here, and to use the Lens-Artists tag to help us find you. We hope you’ll stay tuned next week as I, Ann-Christine/Leya will be the host for our next challenge.

Please be safe and well until next time!

Thursday Thoughts – Thank You

Since last Thursday, life has changed, the world has changed and will never be quite the same again.

Last Wednesday I walked by the sea, contemplating the beautiful sunset.

I stopped for some minutes at the boat house and found another soul, sitting alone in the still of the evening…

And the sun went down, for the last time in my quiet and ordinary life.

I want to thank you from the depth of my heart, from every vibrating fibre, for all your warm greetings, your sincere condolences and your concern. I will keep them in my heart – Thank You. This is a truly magical community… In the header is a magical bouquet of flowers sent to me all the way from Australia. I cannot thank you enough – no one mentioned no one forgotten. I Love You All.