Saturday, January 30, 2010

January 23, 2010

My life, my husband's life and our lives together will forever be defined by before January 23, 2010 and after January 23, 2010. Before January 23, 2010 my husband Shawn was a strong, virile man. After January 23, 2010, he is paralyzed from the chest down. There I said it. Well, I typed it. I don't think I've actually said it out loud.

I don't really even know where to begin. And I don't really know if anyone will see this. Shawn was one of maybe a handful of people that read my little photo blog over the last year. And my other friends that did follow it already know what's happened. I haven't been here in 10 days and there's no photo for today. I haven't even touched my camera in 10 days.

On January 23 we found out my wonderful, precious husband had a staph infection in his cervical spine. He had to have emergency surgery to remove the infection from discs, bone and his spinal column. This has left him in the state he is in now, which hopefully is only temporary. You can read all about it here, And that's why I haven't been here. I've been over there updating and keeping hundreds of people updated on what's happening.

To say that we are stunned is an understatement. To say that it's surreal is an understatement. We both think it's a dream and everyday we're like wait, why haven't we woken up yet. I don't even know that it's actually hit me yet. A friend of mine told me the other day, this is a marathon not a sprint. And I was sprinting for about 4 days solid. I'm certain I lost about 8 to 10 pounds in matter of days. And in that sprint I'm not sure that I've allowed it to hit me. I just don't know.

In a matter of a day, everything has changed. Everything. Even the surgeon, before he went to operate on my husband's spine for 3 1/2 hours said to me, your life is changed. And I don't even know where or how to start in processing everything. All I do know is that I have to be strong and persevere so that Shawn can have a 100% recovery. And thankfully I have the power and love of amazing people supporting me and Shawn.

So, there's no photo today. And I really need to change the tag line now:) But it's still Shining Lotus, rising out of the muck. To reach my highest potential. Maybe not so much now by taking pictures but by the inspiration of my amazing husband.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Catch All

This is one of many "Catch Alls" throughout the house. Sometimes catch alls are baskets or drawers. My catch all drawers are way too scary to open up and take a photo of. They're actually cram all drawers. This little dish is the catch place for my jewelry, lipstick, hair bands, kitty whiskers and some perfumes. What's in your catch alls?

Monday, January 18, 2010

Trying to Embrace It

I'm trying really hard to embrace Winter. And today was a really nice, non-Winter, almost feeling like Spring day. Nonetheless, everything is all dead and brown and gray. What is green, is a flat, dull green. It's just so uninspiring. I've determined, I don't like January.

But, alas, it's January, and there's nothing I can do about it. So whether I like it or not, it's here and I must embrace it rather than grasp and crave for something else. That's the yoga we can find in everything, everywhere. Yoga teaches us that grasping and craving for something other than what is causes us suffering. So we must abide by Aparigraha, non-craving or non-grasping. Seriously, why bother wishing it wasn't January? I would simply be wasting precious mind space and energy.

In an effort to practice this I took the photo above. To find some beauty in all this dead of winter. Even though the plant is dead, there is still color in dried blooms. There's life in the plant, in it's texture and movement. Realizing this makes it all just a little better.

Saturday, January 16, 2010


Empty pots, waiting patiently. Waiting for their purpose to be fulfilled come Spring.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

A New Perspective

It's always good to see things from different perspectives and angles.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

What Will Come

It's the middle of January so everything is gray or brown. Here's some color to remind us of what will come in just a few short months.

Sunday, January 10, 2010


Seems like this is always the amount of light I have to work with these days. By the time I've finished errands, working out, cleaning or by the time I get home from work it's just damn dark. And since it's been butt ass cold, it hasn't been pleasant or desirable to be outside when there is light. What's a girl that likes to shoot in natural light supposed to do?? Well, I guess I'm just gonna have to brave the cold to get some outdoors stuff. Or find something inside at work that might be interesting. Guess I'm going to have to challenge myself. I know that the days are getting longer but I sure do wish they could get longer faster.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Butt Ass Cold

It's Butt Ass Cold here. Butt Ass Cold as defined by the Urban Dictionary is the coldest of cold. Colder than butt ass freezing
.When you walk outside and you want to cry from the wind and cold temperatures. Indeed, I have wanted to cry from the wind and cold this last week. I wasn't even sure if Butt Ass Cold was a real term and apparently it is. There was one day, Thursday, where the wind had stopped whipping and it was 38 degrees and it felt balmy. BALMY at 38 degrees!! But the wind came back today along with an arctic blast. And that blast is supposed to be worse this weekend. This is Virginia. This is not normal or average. This Butt Ass Cold has kept me inside. I've been wanting to go outside and take some pics but there was no way. But it snowed last night, so I braved this butt ass cold this morning to get a few shots. I don't think they give the Butt Assness of the cold justice but they're close.

Monday, January 4, 2010


Oh my dear blog, how I have missed you! And it's only been a few days!!

There are a few blogs that I check out fairly regularly one of which is the Dancing Mermaid. The Dancing Mermaid is helping us get our creativity flowing with some daily assignments. What's crazy about this is that her timing is unreal. On January 1 I wrote about how my goal is to take my creativity with my photos to a new level. That's the day she wrote about being creative and helping others to do so.

Then Sunday her assignment was to "Hang Something Pretty." That just happened to be the day I hung my pretty malas on the kitty altar. Now that idea wasn't mine, it was Shawn's but I loved it with so much gusto it kind of shocked him:) Sunday was the day he put the hooks in and I hung the malas.

All of this is synchronicity, the simultaneous occurrence of events that appear significantly related but have no discernible causal connection. When synchronicity is happening we have to pay attention. It's the universe telling us something. Clearly the universe is liking my goal and sending me messages that I'm right on with it and that it's time to go with it. No more procrastinating (which by the way is my big, BIG, New Year's intention), no more excuses.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Fresh Start, New Beginnings

(Photo of taken April 2008, US Botanic Gardens. And I do realize this isn't a Lotus:) I just don't have a lotus photo!)

January 1, time for a fresh start. The classic time to set goals, intentions and resolutions. But there's always opportunity to reflect and set intentions. There are many "New Years" that happen through out the year that give us a chance for a fresh start. Chinese New Year is in February, Persian New Year is in March. There's 4 seasons, new moons, full moons and 12 months. There's also a new day ... that happens, well, every day. There's every time we take a breath.

I think the fresh start I'll be taking in this space will be for more creative photography. Maybe give myself some projects, definitely take some artist dates with the camera, try to push myself creatively.

The name of this blog is Shining Lotus. The lotus flower represents the potential that we have within us. The potential for purity, spiritual growth and enlightenment. The lotus flower comes from the muck and mud beneath the water. But it rises up, out of the muck to blossom on top of the water in splendid glory.

My hope is that my creativity can blossom like the lotus flower becoming a conduit for my spiritual growth and enlightenment. Sounds like a fun year ahead.