July 5

July 5 – A special Happy Birthday to the great American artist Chuck Close! He was born on July 5, 1940 in Monroe, Washington. He is a wonderful inventive artist who is a painter and photographer. His amazing large scale portrait paintings are powerful. Also his daguerreotype portraits made with expert contemporary daguerreotypist Jerry Spagnoli are very impressive. This was a wonderful collaboration! I first saw his daguerreotype images at the Corcoran in D.C. and was really taken by the portraits frozen in time using electronic flash. He did a wonderful commencement talk at MICA (Maryland Institute College of Art), which I still remember and found inspiring. He is definitely one of my favorite contemporary artists! Here is a group of “Self portrait daguerreotype” images done in 2000. In 2009 he made a series titled “Tapestries” using some of his daguerreotype portraits. These images are large woven mural-sized textiles made using an electronic Jacquard loom. Charles Thomas “Chuck” Close is 77 today.

I switched my truck’s insurance to State Farm last week

I switched my truck’s insurance to State Farm last week. I was shocked by not only the amount I saved with the move from Alfa, but the coverage I got with it. I had been with Alfa for years now, and I felt comfortable keeping them. But when they screwed me over by cancelling my insurance without calling me, along with hiking up the monthly price before combined with reactivation fees that added up…I felt the move to another insurance was best.
They were very patient and good at helping me. Knowing I had coverage not only for the person I may injure, but myself with this coverage made me feel good. It’s a rough situation trying to find the right coverage. However, I was unaware at how much I could get. So I recommend them a lot.

Embrace responsibility

Embrace responsibility
Stop hoping that someone or something or some lucky event will rescue you from responsibility. Instead, embrace responsibility.
Embrace responsibility, and feel the power of your own potential as it is deployed.
Discover how strong you are and how your strength grows with every exertion.
Effort spent running, hiding from responsibility is wasted effort. Responsibility always will catch up to you.
So don’t let responsibility grab you from behind. Run eagerly toward responsibility, ready to take hold of it, doing the work to make it work for you.
Put yourself in the most advantageous position by aligning yourself with responsibility.
Respect and appreciate the power of responsibility, and you’ll be able to handle it well.
Feel your purpose by putting it into action. Embrace responsibility, and live up to your highest potential.

All About My Sins

All About My Sins
We should accuse only ourselves
We see people’s sins, but we don’t know whether they have made peace with God.
We don’t know if the person who has sinned regrets it, but we are not called to judge them, but only to forgive them.
As we become aware of our own sins, and begin to realize how much forgiveness and mercy we need, we are less likely to see the sins of others.
If we find ourselves judging others, we must simply turn it around, and judge only ourselves. Abba Dorotheos’ Practical Teaching on the Christian Life…, is a book every Orthodox Christian should own, and one that should be our constant companion, in our struggle to truly forgive others, and turn our gaze on our own need for change.
We must accuse ourselves, blame ourselves, judge ourselves, and get our focus off the other person. The only way we can overcome the sin of judging others, is to see only the sins of ourselves. True repentance comes only when we work on our own fallen nature. – Abbot Tryphon

Lying here dead after a crazy Shaun T workout

Lying here dead after a crazy Shaun T workout… got me thinking…
So many people give up on the things they want most in life, for little enjoyments they want in the moment. They simply can’t see past Friday night. The weekend…
They dream big, but fail to sacrifice big.
They complain big, but don’t take action big.
If you want something in life. You have to be willing to work hard for it. Success is no accident. It’s hard work. Big sacrifice. Never give up attitude. Studying. Learning..
But most importantly? Loving yourself enough to realize you are worth it!
I pray you live a life you can be proud of!

This is just s shame

This is just s shame! Absolutely no respect for people or places!
Two nights in a row down there and saw so many people just leaving THEIR trash lay. What’s even sadder is the number of adults that let children leave their trash lay. Teach your children respect for places and people.
Whenever we go somewhere our children are made to clean up after themselves before we leave. Typically I carry a Wal-Mart bag with us so they can throw trash away as it comes.
I feel so bad for all those that have to clean up the filth of others. Praying an extra blessing on you all today!

Now that America has just celebrated it’s independence

Now that America has just celebrated it’s independence, I’ve heard that they just received a message from Her Majesty The Queen of England that went something like this…
To the citizens of the United States of America from Her Sovereign Majesty Queen Elizabeth II:
In light of your failure in recent years to nominate competent candidates for President of the USA and thus to govern yourselves, we hereby give notice of the revocation of your independence, effective immediately.
Her Sovereign Majesty Queen Elizabeth II will resume monarchical duties over all states, commonwealths, and territories.
Your new Prime Minister, Theresa Mary May, will appoint a Governor for America without the need for further elections. Congress and the Senate will be disbanded and all politicians will be deported to Mexico.
To aid in the transition to a British Crown dependency, the following rules are introduced with immediate effect:
1. Everyone shall be required to obtain an Oxford English dictionary. Look up aluminium, and check the pronunciation guide. You will be amazed at just how wrongly you have been pronouncing it.
2. The letter ‘U’ will be reinstated in words such as ‘colour’, ‘favour’, ‘labour’ and ‘neighbour.’ Likewise, you will learn to spell ‘doughnut’ without skipping half the letters, and the suffix ‘-ize’ will be replaced by the suffix ‘-ise’. Generally, you will be expected to raise your vocabulary to acceptable levels. (look up ‘vocabulary’).
3. Daily Tea Time begins promptly at 4 pm with proper cups, with saucers, and never mugs, with high quality biscuits (cookies) and cakes; plus strawberries (with cream) when in season.
4. To assist you in your re-colonization, the British government will immediately transport all of it’s convicts and terrorists to the U.S. to help make America great again!
God Save the Queen!

Neat list

Neat list, and like any list that discusses behaviours, responses, etc., I would add that they *may* rather than *will* have the said/desired affect – we’re dealing with humans after all.
Number 5 has a negative affect for me. When I see someone nodding as they are talking to me I have an automatic ‘gut-feel’ of distrust starting to grow. My mind goes to ‘what are they trying to sell me/convince me?’ The first time I realised this happening I wrote it off as being a reflection of whether I liked that person overall (I didn’t like that person), but it happens every time with every one who nods, no matter if I like them or not. The difference I notice now is the intensity of questioning and trust.
Do these resonate with you…

Happy 1st of July

Happy 1st of July
We are returning to the UK for the Summer……please don’t tell me we’ve missed it.
Can we slow down time? How often have you heard or possibly said “can’t believe that it’s ‘x’ long since ‘x’, it’s seems like only yesterday”. It’s certainly something I’ve said and no doubt will say again.
Spending my time divided between the UK and Spain seems to have made the last year seem much longer.
Of course it’s been mad busy at times, on and off planes, trains and many car miles. Then there has been the quieter moments.
Having time to reflect on what’s happening in my life, questioning my own contentment, purpose and achievement has been a massive bonus to being away from ‘home’.
Not everyone is as fortunate as I am, you can’t all ‘escape’ to Spain for weeks at a time. My biggest learning has been that it’s very important to find a ‘Spain’, might only be for an hour and could be almost anywhere. It’s the time taken to step back, think about the issues (good, bad and indifferent) in life, rationalise them and make decisions. As I’ve experienced recently with some of my friends, decisions have been very tough, personally & from a business perspective. Sharing the issues with a trusted friend or professional can be key as a different perspective or sense check will help us to a more balanced position.
I’m from an age when many ‘blokes’ lived/live with a detachment to emotion and a perceived male ‘ego’ of ‘I can sort it….’ and ‘I’m independent, don’t need anyone else…. ‘.
Sharing ‘feelings’, ’emotions’, ‘problems’, may not come naturally, certainly didn’t for me.
It’s worth it