Windows 2

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This is my second entry to the Weekly Photo Challenge; Windows. (See the first entry here.) I like how the trees frame the rock formations of Castle Crags in the first photo. Like a natural frame. I wouldn’t mind having that view from my window! How would you like it? Imagine waking up with brown bears as your closest neighbor. I know the thought might be scary for some people, to me, it’s very appealing. I don’t have that view from my window, but I am blessed to live rather close to this amazing State Park.

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I go here at least once a year. I spent a day here this past weekend. It makes me feel so good! The fresh scent of cedar and pines, the wild country, the blue sky, and the rough landscape. Can you feel it?

Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors where there were only walls.

– Joseph Campbell

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I was thinking about going to a country music festival this past weekend. A few weeks ago I was asked if I could work. I love my work, so of course I said yes. It turned out I didn’t have to work after all. I hadn’t made any arrangement to go to the festival, since I was supposed to work. I had an awesome weekend at this magical place, and didn’t even  send one thought to the concert I missed out on. Imagine my shock when I wake up Monday morning and open my laptop, and read about the mass shooting! I could of been there. There’s no words for how grateful and incredibly thankful I felt at that moment.

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When nature turns extraordinary, your heart turns humble. You simply bow before the glory.

– Unknown

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In gratitude –


Ms Zen



The theme of this week’s photo challenge is very appealing to me. When I was younger, and just lost my mom to her battle with cancer, I imagined myself looking at the world through a window. I did this little mind game for several years, as a part of my survival mechanism. When I finally learned to live in the real world again, it became critically important for me to live mindfully in the moment. In this process, first while distancing myself to the world, and later after making a decision to live mindfully, I started to notice more and more details. It enriched my life in a thousand different ways. It absolutely helped me to be more content, and grateful for what I have. It helped me to develop a more patient side, but also to not settle. My peace of mind had a high price, and I will not sell it, or trade it.

When I wear my snowboard glasses, I often think of the looking out through the window phase of my life. Partly because it feels like you’re looking out through a window, and partly because I did hundreds of days of snowboarding during that phase of my life. The photo is from Boreal, Lake Tahoe, last winter.

On a completely different note, now when I have a little piece of land, I’ve been starting to nurture the thought of having a horse of my own in my life. I actually looked at one yesterday. It was not the one. I came there with higher expectations than usual. Talking to the owner made me believe that he actually knew what he was doing. He was the one that had trained the horse himself. When I got there, it turned out that yes he knew about some techniques, basic Parelli techniques. He had obviously used them a lot, the horse absolutely hated it. Or, should I say, the horse strongly disliked his use of the techniques. (I like Parelli, and think very highly of him. I often use his games when I play with horses. The way I see it, Parelli is very much about mindfulness.) In this case there was no feel of the horse’s response. I started to get a bad feeling from the moment he put the halter on, and the horse turned her head away. Not liking the interaction at all. She even showed her teeth at several occasions, during the short demonstration. Her lips was constantly very tense. It was a very unhappy horse. I tried to be polite when I told the man that it wasn’t the horse I was looking for. (He was a very kind man, but not so experienced with horses. Even though he thought so.) I felt bad when I drove home…and then the engine heat light came on, on my car. I had to stop for a while by the side of the road. There was no cooling fluid, which was very weird, since I had an oil change, and topped of all the fluid the day before. I got home, but definitely need to have a mechanic check things out. An interesting day indeed. It ended in the best possible way with a mini photo shoot with one of my friend’s daughters and their horses. We had a great time, and the photos turned out beautifully, if I may say so. I hope you’re having an awesome weekend!


Ms Zen




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A few more shots from my trip to the desert last weekend.

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The high desert is a most interesting place. I find it very inviting, but at the same time it’s extremely harsh. It’s like a magnet drawing me to the sea of sage brush. I believe it’s the scents that attracts me the most. I devour that scent every chance I get. It’s almost intoxicating.

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I thought the desert photos was a good choice for his week’s photo challenge; Layered.

This week, share with us a layered image of your own. The topic is wide open, as long as you focus on the interplay of depth, density, and texture (or just choose one of these elements if you’d like). Strata of clouds, a shirt collar peeking through a sweater, a cross-section of an onion: you can keep your interpretation as literal or as figurative as you wish.

I look forward to exploring this topic through your photos!



Ms Zen