Scale

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One of the things I love the most, with all the western states, is the endless acres of wild country available to the public. Nature at its very best. It touches something deep inside of me to visit these places. The quietness. The luck of motorized vehicles, the absence of noise. It makes me humble, and grateful. Seeing it through my daughter’s eyes, doubles the experience.

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You must give everything to make your life as beautiful as the dreams that dance in your imagination. – Roman Payne

The scale, and the whole experience multiplies in beauty, with her by my side. Experiencing things for the first time, through the eyes of a child, was what encouraged me to become a teacher in the first place. It is also one of the things I enjoy the most about motherhood. The magical places in today’s post, Lassen Volcanic National Park and Burney Falls, are both within a couple hours from us. I love that it is possible to make a one day adventure and get a complete change of environment, when every day life gets a little stressful.

Today my mind is occupied with prayers to the victims of the terrible fires south of us, lots of work, and projects. This week’s photo challenge helped me in a positive way to re-live the positive wonders of nature around us, and that makes me even more grateful to be alive and well.

Love,

Ms Zen

NorCal Through My Glasses

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When you tell people that you live in California they usually picture LA, or San Francisco. It seems like that goes for 99% of people from other states and countries, that I’ve encountered. This post is about another side.

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To be totally honest. Cities, in all their beauty and comfort are not all that appealing to me. I can’t stand traffic, or bumping in to people right and left when walking down a street. Sure it’s enjoyable to eat at a good restaurant in the city. I do appreciate that, but as soon as I thanked the waitress and paid, I can’t get out fast enough.

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I LOVE the other side of our beautiful state; the wide open spaces, the national parks that can’t be completely explored in one lifetime, the endless ocean and its beautiful beaches, the coyotes singing me to sleep most every night, watching bears enjoy blackberries in a sunny spot next to the lake, hiking/snowboarding on our extraordinary mountains, and growing my own food in the fertile soil in our part of the state. The fact that when you’re on a road trip it’s beautiful everywhere you look. When I drive in to town for groceries I only see beauty. I can’t get enough of this side of our state. Have you experienced this side?

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…perhaps that might be the way to write this book–to open the page and to let the stories crawl in by themselves.  ― John Steinbeck

That’s California to me. Life coming my way, like the waves coming into the magical beaches along the coast. Forcing me to accept the inevitable, to accept, to say yes, to start thinking outside the box. While exploring the wild sides of our state, I’ve also learned to say no when needed. To not compromise. I’ve been way to good at compromising earlier in my life. There’s no compromise in the nature around me, but the beauty is in how animals and plants coexist in harmony. It might sound contradicting. If you think about it, it makes perfect sense. I don’t think I learned as much during my 18 years in school (I loved school,) as I’ve learned from observing nature. California is pure magic to me. Just like I want life to be. Like I choose for my life to be.

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The pictures in today’s post is from a beach near Half Moon Bay, that I visited last weekend. It was Saturday afternoon/evening when we got there, my daughter needed to collect some sea shells. I love that it is possible to find an almost empty beach on a weekend.  Thanks for reading my thoughts on mindfulness.

Love,

Ms Zen

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 –

Love,

Ms Zen