What I see is my niece heading out with her fishing tackle in tow. What I think is I like catching fish more than I like fishing.
If people concentrated on the
really important things in life,
there’d be a shortage of fishing poles.
– Doug Larson
What I see is my niece holding on to her cat. What I remember is that cat did not want to be held on to! What I know is I do the same thing all too often – hold on tight to things that want to be let go. And sometimes I don’t hold tight enough to the things I should. But it’s a brand new year, and a good time to evaluate what I hold dear, what I need to put more time and energy into, and what I need to just let go.
Cheers to a new year
and another chance
for us to get it right.
– Oprah Winfrey
What I see is my niece playing tea pots. What I think is, “I used to have hair like that. Golden and shiny and beautiful. (sigh) And now I don’t.” What I feel is old. What I hope is I’m not nearly as old as I’ll get.
The great thing
about getting older
is that you don’t lose all
the other ages you have been.
– Madeleine L’Engle
Yes, these are my niece’s feet; yes, they’re hanging over the balcony. BUT: my arm’s around her AND there is a metal railing across her chest. And no, she couldn’t have slipped underneath. Now that that’s out of the way… 🙂
I’m a Fall person. I love it! I love the cooler air and the changing colors of the leaves. There’s an excitement of returning tv shows, football and back to school (even though I don’t have a tv signal or kids). It’s a season of holidays, with the back to back of Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Fall is just great!
I’m just not feeling it this year. It’s all going by so fast, and time just seems to be slipping out from under me.
Where did August go? Where did September disappear to? October is already a week gone.
This year I’m not ready for fall.
This year, right now, I’d love to jump off this picture and right into those inviting waters. I’d love a couple more days in the middle of that summer vacation.
What I see is my niece and my dad. What I think is I should have used the flash. What I feel is it doesn’t even matter.
It’s not the quality of the photo
that draws me in;
what I so cherish
is the moment that it captured.
What I see is Amanda intently gazing into a spotlight at the botanical gardens. If I had known she was going sit down and stare into it, I wouldn't have asked her to go over there. She simply refused to stop. Maybe she wanted to touch it, but at least knew enough not to do that. What I think is this just couldn't have been good for her.
If you don’t have your own children,
you have to settle for ruining
other people’s kids.
I took this picture at a bookstore in Fredericksburg. My nephews played with a band here last summer, and I loved the space, so I went back in the daytime to take more pictures. What I see here is a lovely kind of skylight and some posters displayed for sale. What I think is that it's so worth it to take some time and look around.
The moment one gives close attention to any thing,
even a blade of grass,
it becomes a mysterious, awesome,
indescribably magnificent world in itself.
– Henry Miller
Another detail photo. What I see here are Idgie's feet; he was a percher. He was also a loving, independent, fierce, roving, fun, loyal, spunky, confident, wonderful cat. That's why we named him Idgie. What I think is a picture is worth a thousand memories.
Memory is the diary
that we all carry about with us.
– Oscar Wilde
The first place we lived in Richmond was a very old house (there was an ice box attached to the kitchen) that had been turned into a duplex. Our bedroom windows looked at each other over a little empty space. What I see here is our dog, Topaz, and our new kitten, Idgie, peeking at each other through the windows. What I think is I'm glad I took this photo, because it's so much clearer than the picture I have in my memory.
Time has a wonderful way
of showing us what really matters.
– Margaret Peters
A look through the storefront of one of Fredericksburg's many "antique malls". Every historical town has their fair share of these, filled to the brim with other people's trash and treasures. What I see is a carousel horse, which first caught my eye, but also a picture of a man. Old pictures like this can be found at any antique store, and I always wonder how they made their way out of the family and into the public. Did the family die out? Or did the picture just lose its value because they no longer remember who this man was? What I think is that he was important once. He lived; he was a baby and a boy and then a man, and someone loved him. Maybe that's enough.
I made my life my monument.
– Ben Johnson
This is my old dog Topaz, looking through the space where the screen used to be (a screen that she knocked out, by the way). What I see is a dog that my roommate and I loved dearly, who we thought was the most beautiful dog in the world, even if no one else saw what we did. What I think is that our pets are members of our family.
Sometimes we do choose
the members of our family.
Once upon a time I sold swimming pools in the family business. What I see is one of our finished pools. What I think is that, in the world I am growing up in, our lives are somewhat segmented. There are so many parts: so many jobs, so many relationships, so many places I've lived, so many different things I have done. There are so many people I have already been, and more are on the way.
It sometimes feels to me
as though I’m not living one life,
but an accumulation of separate lives.
When I was young, I just loved clowns. I have no idea how that got started, or why I loved them so much, but I did. So why are pictures like this such a surprise to me? How is that something I forget? What I see here is a grouping of some of the clowns that I had collected (note the wall art!). What I think is that it's amazing how much we change over the years and how many things there are about ourselves that even we don't remember.
I notice well that one stray step
from the habitual path
into a new direction.
– Franz Grillparzer
I remember this day; it was a very good day. What I see is my nephew (who turned 17 this past summer) in the kind of moment that seems set aside for the young. What I think is that it isn't over til it's over.
I can be filled with joy and wonder too.
This is a very old picture of a barn that fell apart long ago. What I see is a wall that's as much hole as wood and bales of hay that appear to be moldering on the floor. What I think is how like memory this is, a snapshot of things that no longer exist, imperfect, color faded, and encompassing so much less than what I'd like to see after all these years.
How we remember,
what we remember,
and why we remember
form the most personal map
of our individuality.
– Christina Baldwin
Logan and Amanda in a moment I'm overjoyed to have captured. What I see is a brother and his little sister sharing a look and a laugh together. What I think is that our relationships are a precious treasure. What I wish is that it could always be this simple.
Person to person,
moment to moment,
as we love,
we change the world.
– Samahria Lyte Kaufman
I took this picture at my cousin's wedding, which was the same day that Hurricane Bill came through. What I see is the loveliest sunset I've ever witnessed. What I think is there are no words. Such visions of natural beauty transport me beyond thought and into a realm of simply being, of oneness with the universe, a place where I see things with my heart and feel things I haven't the words to convey.
It is only with the heart
that one can see rightly;
what is essential
is invisible to the eye.
– Antoine de Saint-Exupery
My sister. What I see is a young woman trying on a wedding dress, which is certainly a big financial commitment for something you only wear once. What I think is the commitments we make to one another are not without their own risks or fears. But we reach out anyway, with love and with hope, with purpose and determination. And, I trust, with Joy.
The purpose of life is to live it,
to taste experience to the utmost,
to reach out eagerly
and without fear
for newer and richer experience.
– Eleanor Roosevelt
I took this many, many summers ago in Chincoteague Virginia. It was the only time I've taken my nephews on vacation, just the three of us. What I see is Peyton looking down at the water mere minutes after we arrived at our vacation rental. What I think of is how wonderful it was to be an aunt to young things, and of two little girls who are giving me that gift again.
Every day is my best day;
this is my life.
I’m not going to have
this moment again.
– Bernie Siegel
This is one of my favorite pictures, taken almost 20 years ago. These two "people" are my then-roommate Margaret and our dog Topaz. What I see is the two of them sitting on Skyline Drive, looking out over the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Shenandoah Valley, each seemingly lost in contemplation or admiration or I know not what. What I think is that man and beast alike are compelled to contemplate their surroundings. What I wonder is what the two of them were thinking at that very moment.
to wonder at the height of mountains,
at the huge wave of the sea,
at the long courses of rivers,
the vast compass of the ocean,
at the circular motion of the stars,
and they pass by themselves
without wondering at all.
– St. Augustine 399 ad
I needed a picture today that made me feel better. I took this one while on vacation last August at Disney, and I love how the water looks with all of the reflections on the waves. What I see is a pretty, snow-white bird with blue eyes and a couple of black tail feathers just sticking out. But I don't know what kind it is. I also see two black fish in the top left corner. What I think of is a hot, sweaty, crowded, wonderful day spent on my own, just taking pictures and soaking it all in. I also think of how great it felt to join back up with my family at the end of that day and how happy I was to see them.
There are a great many beautiful things
that I’ve experienced in this world.
What a blessing a new day is.
My niece Amanda at her fourth birthday party last September. What I see is a kid who knows what's good - and she seems intent on getting every bit of chocolate off of that fork. What I think is that everyone should get their very own cake on their birthday. Let everyone else share!
Birthdays are nature’s way
of telling us
to eat more cake.
My niece, baby Allison, back when she was still a tiny little thing. What I see is a darling baby, who was always asleep. What I think of is how fast she's growing, and the now six-month-old who was just sitting on my knee and kicking her little legs for all she was worth.
Time is at once
the most valuable
and the most perishable
of all our possessions.
– John Randolph
A comment CW made here last week put me in mind of all the photos I treasure, even though they are very far from perfect. This is one of them. What I see is an old picture of my high-school friend, poorly framed, blurry, and a lot orange. What I think of is how like memory this is, fuzzy and imperfect, and yet the whole story is there, of friendship and laughter, big hair, priceless works of art, and goofing off after school.
We don’t remember days;
we remember moments.
– Cesare Pavese