Monday, April 27, 2015

Walking by Beauty

A while ago there was a social experiment where Josua Bell, the violinist played at the L’ENFANT PLAZA STATION in Washington D.C.
The Washington Post said this: It was 7:51 a.m. on Friday, January 12, the middle of the morning rush hour. In the next 43 minutes, as the violinist performed six classical pieces, 1,097 people passed by. ... No one knew it, but the fiddler standing against a bare wall outside the Metro in an indoor arcade at the top of the escalators was one of the finest classical musicians in the world, playing some of the most elegant music ever written on one of the most valuable violins ever made. 

So What happens? Do you stop and listen? Rush by, drop a dollar?

What if you knew this: A onetime child prodigy, at 39 Joshua Bell has arrived as an internationally acclaimed virtuoso. Three days before he appeared at the Metro station, Bell had filled the house at Boston’s stately Symphony Hall, where merely pretty good seats went for $100. Two weeks later, at the Music Center at Strathmore, in North Bethesda, he would play to a standing-room-only audience so respectful of his artistry that they stifled their coughs until the silence between movements.

Did that change your mind?

Here's what happened as reported from the Washington Post:
Three minutes went by before something happened. Sixty-three people had already passed when, finally, there was a breakthrough of sorts. A middle-age man altered his gait for a split second, turning his head to notice that there seemed to be some guy playing music. Yes, the man kept walking, but it was something.

A half-minute later, Bell got his first donation. A woman threw in a buck and scooted off. It was not until six minutes into the performance that someone actually stood against a wall, and listened.

Things never got much better. In the three-quarters of an hour that Joshua Bell played, seven people stopped what they were doing to hang around and take in the performance, at least for a minute. Twenty-seven gave money, most of them on the run -- for a total of $32 and change. That leaves the 1,070 people who hurried by, oblivious, many only three feet away, few even turning to look.

There was never a crowd, not even for a second.

What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
-- from “Leisure,” by W.H. Davies

What things do we miss in our hurry?  Those a the station that day missed out on a free performance of a master musician, sharing some of the greatest classical works ever written, using a instrument worth nearly 4 million from the 18th century.  An opportunity of a lifetime. 

Diamond Rio recorded a song with Joshua Bell about this experience.

Taking the time to look around and see all the beauty that is ALWAYS there. The kids sleepy faces, a garden full of flowers, clouds rolling across the sky, laughter coming through the windows. It's always there, just take a moment to SEE.  

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Architectural Swoon--Modern

One of my favorite thing to do to kill time is look through architectural files, finding my favorites and imagining that it's mine. How would the inside look and what would I plant in the garden, etc... you get the idea. It's window shopping homes. Here are a few of my favorite modern homes, apparently I'm really loving windows right now. :) Which do you like best?

Monday, April 20, 2015

Lush Garden Spaces

It's spring!! I am so excited! I love getting out in the yard and making it better, prettier, more functional and enjoyable. We've already tackled step one of the back deck remodel and torn down the fence that was falling (pics on those projects in a later post)  and now I'm looking for inspiration to make the yard feel lush. 
Here are some of the photos that I think are inspiring.

 I'm loving the trained lattice of this, could be great along an ugly fence line.

The idea of a  living fence is appealing, if only I had years to wait for it to grow...
 though I do love the spaced trees and planting strip. 

 The transitions here are beautiful. I'm feeling like I need more 
shady spots to make soothing like this in our yard.

Beautiful pathway, I wish I had the room to do something like this.

 I really like the crushed gravel pathways, so much more organic than cement
 and won't breakdown over time like wood chips. I think this is perfect for our side yard!
Do you like to spruce up the garden in spring? Where do you find your inspiration?

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

7 ways to CONNECT with your spouse

1 Daily Contact  No matter the type of touch, kiss, holding hands, back or foot rub, make it last for at least 30 seconds. — humans NEED physical contact, it's one of our most basic needs! 

2 Express Gratitude  Think of things your spouse does for you, whether big or small though out the day, an expression of GRATITUDE is always appreciated. 

3 Create Memories Together It's important to try new things together and even ways to show affection. It doesn't need to be dramatic, maybe a simple gesture or time always reserved for each other--the first 10 minutes of the morning. You'll be able to look back fondly on the moments you share together.

4 Really Listen You may know each other really well but if you take the time to REALLY listen--even when you're mad, you'll have opportunities to learn a little more.  Try asking questions to clarify what you heard, or repeat back to assure you heard correctly. This helps ease conflicts. 

5 Share a Laugh Life is hard sometimes; it helps to remember to keep a good sense of humor. Being able to lighten the mood and have a GOOD attitude helps the whole house feel lighter and any situation bot so bad.

6 Flirt You’re married now, but you need to KEEP dating. Wear something special; go to a place you love together. Keeping the spark alive is easier than rekindling one. Give each other complements and make out in the car. J

7 Unplug Taking time to switch off electronics and REALLY spending time together face to face with no distractions shows your respect and love for the people you’re with. On dates, running errands, vacations, turn electronics off and be WITH those you are with.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Friday Feature

I love music! Here are a few of the songs I've been listening to lately.

Andy Grammer - Honey, I'm Good

AWOLNATION - Hollow Moon

 Joe Brooks - Kaleidoscope 

What have you listened to this week? Favorites?

Wednesday, March 11, 2015


The anthology that I have a story in is available for pre-order and to celebrate we are having a giveaway! Come celebrate with us!!
Click the link and be sure to follow all instructions so you can win some amazing prizes!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

My Current Reading List

I read a lot of books each year. I go to the library every week and pull at least three books to read. Lately I'm headed to non fiction and biography/autobiography stacks. Here's my most current reads:

Purchase links: L to R top to bottom: #1 Here #2 Here #3 Here  #4 Here #5 Here
Or check your local library like I did. :)

What are you reading right now?

What types of books are you most drawn to?