Lens-Artists Challenge #179 – Serene

Patti suggests Serene for the last challenge of the year. A timely choice, as that is what many of us need today, serenity. The hustle and bustle of December makes for contemplation – is this what we really want?

I hope my chosen images all speak for themselves as to what serene means to me.

Serenity is the birthplace for creativity, wisdom, and meaningful productivity.

– Jane Nelsen

He who loves nature loves peace.
― Michael Bassey Johnson

Serenity lies in solitude.
― Lailah Gifty Akita

Meditation takes you to the place inside you which is the most calm and serene place in the universe.
― Purvi Raniga

Like water, we are truest to our nature in repose.

– Cyril Connolly

And, we all strive to reach the light.

Thank you for treating us to a variety of choices last week – a true delight! This week we invite you to join us and show us what serene means to you. In your post, include a link to Patti’s post and use the Lens-Artists tag. We’re looking forward to seeing your photos!

We have two important announcements as well: There will be no new challenge from us on Saturday, December 25th, but we will return on January 1st, 2022 for our annual Favorite Photos of 2021 challenge. The number of images is up to you.

Until then, I wish you Happy Holidays and a happy and healthy New Year!

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #95 – All Wet

Tina’s challenge this week is a wet one. See her fantastic bear shots at Travels and Trifles!

My first thought for All Wet, was of Galapagos and its many water living animals. So, two of them are playing in the opener.

These are some of my favorite ”wets” – all from the archives.

A wet forest in Sweden

A hot hot day (42 degrees C) in Bilbao, Spain

A disappearing building in Barcelona

Autumn rain in my garden

I like girls who like the countryside, put on walking boots and can bend with the wind a bit. If you’re going to live with me, you need to be able to embrace the countryside and wet dogs.

 – Jay Kay

And I will end this short, wet story with my favorite dog, my first lagotto romagnolo – the legendary Mille. Why ”legendary”? Well, for eleven summers in a row, he was standing, running or walking in the sea, at our summer house, from early morning until late evening. Chasing bubbles. This was his kingdom. (From the beginning these dogs were water dogs in Romagna, Italy, but the area was drained and the dogs were taught to dig for truffles instead.) Every man and woman in our little village knew him, every tourist, every child patted him and played with him.

We lost Mille in 2014, but people out there still (2019) remember him, and tell their own memories of him. My children planned to make a statue to sit on ”his” beach, so he would forever be watching the sea. But that dream was not realized. I have had many dogs and cats in my life – but nothing and no one compares to him. Also, he was always All Wet.

Thank you for last week’s peeks at Amy’s At home – a challenged I think more than I enjoyed very much. Hope to see you next week again, for Patti’s Challenge #96.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #89 – A River Runs Through It

I’m really quite simple. I plant flowers and watch them grow… I stay at home and watch the river flow. – George Harrison

This is what we must do today – this is not the time for travel. So, from the archives – images from Iceland, New Zealand, Sweden, Scotland, Norway and Georgia. May the rivers keep flowing and the waters never go dry.


A winter message from the river: Never surrender! Life can try to stop you, but somehow find a way to flow!
Mehmet Murat ildan

The river teaches us many things, but its most important teaching is this: Whatever is happening around you, you keep flowing to your own destination following your own way!
Mehmet Murat ildan

If you have a river, then you should share it with everyone. – Chen Guangbiao

It is from small streams that big rivers rise.
Matshona Dhliwayo 

No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man. – Heraclitus

Many a calm river begins as a turbulent waterfall, yet none hurtles and foams all the way to the sea. – Mikhail Lermontov

Learn from a river; obstacles may force it to change its course, but never its destination.
Matshona Dhliwayo 


Thanks to Amy for this week’s challenge. Click here to see and link to her original post, and remember to use the Lens-Artists tag.  Thank you also for all your creative, interesting and  heartfelt responses to last week’s CHAOS challenge. In these troubled times, please practice Social Distancing to protect yourselves and others from the continuing spread of COVID-19. Stay safe.

Next week, Tina (Travels and Trifles) will be your host.


Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #87 – Reflections

We welcome another guest blogger this week, Miriam of The Showers of Blessings.  She suggests we find reflections to share.

Believe it or not, but I found myself in some of mine…even though I never do selfies.

Reflect upon your present blessings — of which every man has many — not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.
Charles Dickens

Today, International Women’s Day, we might just change his quote a bit…and put in woman and women too.

Can you remember who you were, before the world told you who you should be?

― Charles Bukowski

Did you ever wonder if the person in the puddle is real, and you’re just a reflection of him?

Bill Watterson 

Bewilderment increases in the presence of the mirrors.
Tarjei Vesaas,

When do I see a photograph, when a reflection?
Philip K. Dick,

A lake is a landscape’s most beautiful and expressive feature. It is Earth’s eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature.
Henry David Thoreau,


These images were made in Iceland, Stettin, Copenhagen, Bilbao, Norway and Switzerland. As usual, click to enlarge.

For the rest of March, we will follow the usual schedule – and stay tuned for next Saturday when the host is me, Leya!


Thursday Thoughts

The last day of the Christmas festivities, and I am so grateful for having my family around me – but still dreaming of clear skies and some light. We light up the days for each other, and to cheer myself up even more, and you, I send some photos from a colourful somewhere in the Balkans.

Thank you for all your lovely Christmas greetings – and I hope your 2019 will come to a beautiful end.



Lens – Artists Photo Challenge #56 – Seascapes and/or Lakeshore

The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.

 – Jacques Yves Cousteau, Oceanographer


Amy shows some amazing seascapes from her cruisings, and challenges us to post our own memorable moments from seascapes and lakeshores. My images are from my Icelandic journey this July.

First I would like to thank you for sharing your dreams with us last week – amazing! Now some of my seascapes might continue in that dreamy perspective…but it certainly takes some time to wake up from a dreamy era!

Having visited Iceland several times before, we soon realised how lucky we were with the weather. So lucky, that Icelanders we met could not but smile and congratulate. – They told us that their own criteria for ”Good Weather” is No Wind.

My opening image was shot from the peak of Eldfell at Heimaey in Vestmannaeyar, looking out to the North Atlantic. Hiking the volcano is fairly easy and takes less than an hour. And you are rewarded with breathtakingly beautiful views – if the mist lifts, and this time it did.

All the other seascapes are from Snæfellsnes peninsula, West Iceland. The name of the sea or fjord added. And, there is no colour enhancing – this is true Icelandic blue!

Arnarstapi, Faxaflói

Lóndrangar, Faxaflói

Stykkishólmur, Breiðafjörður

Stykkishólmur, Breiðafjörður



Hvalfjörður, and yes, this is the pier where the whaling ships unloaded – and still unloads the captured whales. In 1981 we were here to see it with our own eyes. A 50 ton whale was taken care of in less than three hours. I cried all the way. The only comfort was that every piece of it came to use – nothing was thrown away. Many skilled Japanese worked here in those days. We know that they still catch whales in Iceland, and this station was used last year. I was not happy to learn this. But, it seems there is some trouble with Japan, so, no whaling in 2019. Hopefully Icelandic whaling will come to an end, because they no longer depend on it for a living.

The sea lives in every one of us – Wyland

Welcome to join in – we are looking forward to seeing you!





Tuesday Photo Challenge – Bank

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Bank

We had some snow that year, 2015, and glorious winter days.

Thursday Thoughts – We Must Make it Work!

My post from November 30, 2017, a year ago – I thought a reminder to us all would not hurt. What do you want to give your children and grand children for the future?


Every December I remember our month in New Zealand some years ago. Never have I been to a country where I found so much and so many to admire and love.

This is where our antipodes live, this is where I had one of my first penfriends, this is the country whose nature I believe to be the most diverse and beautiful in the world. And this is where Rainbow Warrior went down, sending many people around the world into an unbelievable state of shock.

We are constantly reminded of how much we contaminate our world, and the focus here in Swedish media, right now,  is the sea, the oceans.

Just like in Wellington, we can still bathe, swim and fish in Stockholm – but for how long?

I am a member of many organizations trying their best to help preserving our planet for generations to come. But right now, we receive news every day about all the plastic and micro plastic in the oceans – a terrible threat to all organisms-

So, I think again, with my heart wide open, about how much I respect and love NZ, its people and its genuine efforts to help the world stay healthy. Down to every detail… for example the artwork made for making us humans see and do the right things.

And these are only two, small,  brilliant examples out of many, many…we saw new examples every day.

Hopefully it is not too late for the world – but You and I, and all of us, have to do our bit, our part, every day – to save our enigmatic and fantastic planet. Start with the little things…don’t use plastic bags, bring your own when you go shopping. Don’t throw old medicine in the toilet, in Sweden we leave them at the pharmacy for destruction.

Can you say you try to do everything you can to help? I know I try – but I also know I can do so much more.