Reilly Smiles…

What are smiles? The corners of our lips turned up to show we are happy; hmm the simple version.  

Sometimes smiles come in many different ways.

Today’s smile was brought to me by Reilly.

He made me laugh, with his little Reilly smile.

I laughed on the outside but as I walked away to do something in the house the feeling stayed with me; a smile in my heart. It trigged other thoughts, thoughts that brought a greater feeling, and then a bigger warmer feeling in my heart began to spread.

Some people can’t smile; they are in a place where life doesn’t bring them smiles. They try to make the smile happen yet there it is the black cloud that turns each corner down. The once warm heart stays cold. Unhappiness becomes their daily feeling.

There are times when the smile takes effort and if you forget to make the attempt to put on a happy face some people feel compelled to tell you to “smile”. Sometimes the reminder may bring one out of deep thought and back to reality but other times telling someone to smile when one does not know why they are frowning is dangerous territory.

If what I have done may bring a smile to heart or some ones face so be it, I will not tell them to smile. Sometimes it’s the little things that will take that person to the place that will make them feel like smiling.

I leave that job up to the universe to bring smiles or Reilly.

Where I am…

This is my place, where I sit

Where I find peace

Where I am

This is my place, where I go in my mind

Where I am still

Where I am

This is my place, where I feel

Where warm heals

Where I am

This is my place, where my heart finds rhythm

Where energy fills

Where I am

This is my place, where I am

Officer Reilly with a Smile for You…

Because he always makes you smile, I am giving you a shot of Reilly today.

Some of you know of him, some of you have met him and some of you have seen him on my flickr page but he is always good for a smile no matter where you see him.

Whenever I am out with Reilly I see it, strangers smile and say “Is he a Jack Russell?” and of course he is and they laugh. They all think he is a puppy. Reilly is 7. 

Reilly came to our house on August 11, 2007 and never left. He was a rescue; he lived in his foster home for 3 years before we found him. He needed some structure. His original owners would let him wander the neighborhood. He would come home with UPS packages and autographed baseball hats from other people’s garages. I guess that is why he ended up in a foster home. Tim wanted to give him back, my heart wouldn’t let go.  We trained him, Tim trained him. He now listens. He stole Tim’s heart too.  A little sketchy around kids but we know how to take care of that, he still spins but not as often. Ya have to meet Reilly in person to see the spin, neighbors watch out windows just to see; they laugh.

Reilly was suppose to have a different name but because he was an older dog we kept the one he had; I changed the spelling to a more Irish version. You know because if Reilly talked he would have an Irish brogue. Tim thinks I am nuts but there is this personality that comes out of Reilly when you are walking him sometimes.  I call it, The Officer Reilly.

Growing up in my neighborhood when I was little they had beat cops that walked the streets. At night they checked storefront doors making sure they were locked, cleared out the shadows keeping the streets safe; we lived on the first floor so I could watch them walk by they were always alert, looking side to side, going in and out of the door ways. THAT is Reilly when we walk around the neighborhood, he ducks in and out of driveways looking at people’s houses, pert, on his toes, ears pricked in the air looking from side to side and up the streets.

Here is officer Reilly to give you a smile today.

I Leave You With Still Beauty Tonight…

I have not posted in a little while; I have been shooting and working in Photoshop honing my skills, but in the last two weeks I have been pretty much brain fried.

You see we are short handed at work; I don’t mean down by one or two people short handed no, I am talking an entire team…ok well maybe not an entire team but after today there is one lone member left on one of the two teams that make up our department so yeah, almost an entire team. By the time I get home creative is gone, eyeballs’ are burning in sockets and brain is as I already said fried, fried, fried.

Its one thing to be “on” but when you’re “on, on” it’s mentally draining.

This picture makes me want to be in a peaceful place. I have been thinking more and more about the shore, the ocean, a beach but I have no shots to convey that image I have been conjuring up. I looked at this and it made me feel still.

I leave you with still beauty tonight.

Bacon, Glorious Bacon…

Me: “Tim come here I want you to see this”

Tim staring at image on computer monitor: “Eww (ready, add Wisconsin accent on the next word) Gross, I ate that today” Yes you did!!!

BLT’s were the item on the menu by request from none other than Tim himself and I did not protest.

I know, not that long ago I blogged about my healthy eating. Hey, a girls gotta have some bacon once in awhile.  It’s not an item  that regularly appears on the menu and it’s not very often Tim is requesting to cook it; he hates that lingering smell of bacon permeating throughout the house long after it has been consumed.

Today, we cooked it on the grill, in the morning, well mid morning. That is why you see that little twinkle of sunlight; light that is good for shooting pictures but I like to think it was the wonderful personality of the bacon shining through as well.  

Shall I extol the virtues of bacon or do most people already know them? Or, do they hide the secrete desire to consume bacon for fear of being looked down upon for making such an unhealthy choice in dietary pleasure, did I say pleasure, ah hem choice, I mean choice. Come on,  if consumed in small quantities, not very often and handled responsibly bacon can be that once in a while treat ranking right up there with a pint of Coffee flavored  Hagen Daz, Slice of cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory and Ice Box cake. None of which have appeared on my menu in quite some time…oh no wait, Ice Box cake made an appearance not that long ago. However, that was for visitors and luckily it went fast so I only had two pieces.

Never mind that back to the bacon and its yummy salty, crunchy goodness.  I like to think that I added responsible choices to my consumption of the much maligned porkster by laying it upon slices of fresh tomato, toasted fresh 9 grain Italian bread; I forego the L in the BLT combination, not a big fan of the L on my sandwiches. Give me a bowl full of the L loaded with plenty of fresh crispy veggies and a tasty homemade vinaigrette, you got a fan but no, not on my sandwiches. There was a spreading of the mayo, a light mayo and yes coffee was involved; after all this was a brunch BLT. Coffee sweetened by Agave Nectar and fat free lightener with no processed ingredients.

I did the bacon thing the right way. Besides, my iron skillet thanks me for the bath in bacon fat…what a wonderful added bonus seasoning my iron skillet received and it will thank me when it gives back a wonderfully cooked meal in the future.

Bacon, “eww gross” I think not.

Stand Tall…

Sway in the wind and roll with the punches

Stand tall in your confidence

Tattered and torn with battle scars to show

Stand tall in your beauty

Strike you down with words they will

Stand tall in your pride

Pull you down as you run up hill

Stand tall in your determination

A Chupacabra in the night…?

I am sitting at my desk, looking out over my backyard and others that are connected by white picket fences; Dooley just finished mowing his lawn and Jason is next door catching up on his landscaping chores; he just got back from vacation. Looking out over this picturesque setting one never realizes all that truly goes on in the vast space beneath our feet.

Sure during the day we see the bees, birds and an occasional one eared rabbit cutting through on their way to the wooded areas; we even have a lizard or two that makes an appearance but what happens at night when our eyes are not that fine tuned by the light of the day?

At night we have the benefit of the screened in porch, shielding us from night time pests.  We sit under Jason and Erin’s pergola and are visited by beetles and huge moths that are drawn towards the light coming through the windows, but what else is out there? You hear them, their various notes of croaking and chirping floating through the air like an amphibian symphony; occasionally we hear a screaming type sound but that is further away and for another picture/blog and that’s if I ever get the chance to see what is actually making that hideous noise. I digress.

Last night while taking Reilly out on his last jaunt around the yard to empty his little bladder Erin ran home to let the boys out for their nightly constitution; so I had the benefit of her back yard light and as I reached for the handle on the screen door something caught my eye.  I quickly let go fearing a big moth had nestled on to the side of the door frame and would fly in if I startled it by clicking the latch.  I moved away so my shadow from the light would expose the creature that caught my eye and what I found was not a soft winged thing but a green little bug eyed creature with suction cups as feet.  I quickly yet gently opened the door, got Reilly in the house, grabbed my camera and came out shooting.

I was sure Erin would freak once she saw what it was but she was just as curious as I however, she did point out that if I keep flashing this thing it may jump off the house and on to me. I decided I had enough shots and turned to step aside and move towards the door when the lilac bush just to the right of the door moved.  Yes, he did!! He made his move and leapt with grace, precision and accuracy towards the bush and landed, smack on a leaf that was left rocking from side to side. The photo shoot began again.

I was left with a decision, do I post the shot of Clyde (yes I named him for the sake of the story) stuck to the wall next to the door handle, the close up or the one of him hanging mid-air by literally the seat of his pants; yeah ok no pants, basically his toe pads.  After researching what they were called I think what we have here is a tree frog.

At night time we turn out the lights and turn up our fears; fears of what we can’t see. Some of us become down in the dumps when the darkness takes over and when the lights go off some of use seem to exude a nocturnal energy. Whatever it is that makes you lie awake at night obsessing, fearing things or contemplating the day know that there are cute little creatures out there too, just like Clyde.  As far as the chupacabra that screams off in the distance I will keep you posted.