Saturday, December 31, 2016

Beacons of Light

We all have our beacons of light.  We leave the front porch light on to guide our steps home in the dark.  Street lights help us navigate our city streets.  Our car's head lights illuminate the path in front of us.  In the old days, lanterns lit our way.  People can also be our beacons.  My dad helped guide me for nineteen years in an active day to day lighting of the way.  After that, I turned to him many times to help me along life's path.  2017 will be my first year without him lighting the way. 

Every December, I delight in looking back at all my accomplishments, or lack there of, and organizing new goals for the coming year.  As I looked at my blog and photography, I wondered what my new theme could be.  Beacons kept jumping into my thoughts as did lanterns.  As I contemplated, I looked out my writing window.  In the garden next to the sugar maple is a new lantern I bought to remind me of Dad.  Hum, I should do a lantern project for the year.  Then I remembered in the garage, I have an old lantern that Dad gave me.  I could take that lantern out on little outings and shoot pictures of it throughout the year.  Perfect idea, but I am going to Britain in March.  I am not taking the lantern in my luggage or dragging it all over the island.  It is a heavy duty lantern for goodness sakes.

For the year 2017, I am going to do a series on "beacons of lights."  I will use my dad's lantern for my outings around the state.  I am also going to be watching for beautiful old-fashioned lampposts, specifically in Britain.  I might even shoot pictures of some of my human beacons of light.  I am excited by the project.  I know Dad will be close by my side on this project.  At the end, I want to take my favorite photos and make a calendar for the year 2018.  I will also blog them here, so stay tuned.

Here is my first photo of Dad's lantern under the Christmas tree.  Speaking of beacons, the lights on a Christmas tree are a beacon of our faith for the coming of our Savior.  My dad loved Christmas trees.  All year as he worked in the woods, he watched for the best tree.  Decorating the tree took a good two to four hours.  He taught us girls how to place the lights perfectly and the ornaments just so.  When my cousin moved to Texas, he sent her a Montana tree her first Christmas away.  When I moved to the flatlands of Montana, Dad sent me a tree every year until I moved back to the mountains.  I think he would like these pictures. 

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Thursday, December 29, 2016


In my younger years while I was in school, I loved reading poetry.  I dabbled in writing poems when my muse felt the need to express myself in a vibrant fashion.  As work and life took me away from writing, I fell from the art form.  I have missed it.

This year, one of my artist dates that I want to work with more is poetry.  Today I should receive a book to help me read through "The Faerie Queene" by Edmund Spenser, an epic poem.  In college, I fell in love with the story written in middle English and have always wanted to read the entire book, 1,000 pages.  I have picked it up a number of times, but too many years have passed since I studied the old language.  I need some help.

The other project I want to accomplish is writing Haikus.  I will never be a poet, but I like to play.  This poem style will be perfect to attempt once a week.  I will work at posting them.  Last week, I wrote three poems about the loss of my father and the beacon I saw in him.  Here is the one I liked the most.

Looking for the Shore

Light extinguished, beacon cold

Floating aimlessly

Yesterday, when I finished up my writing, I was excited for today's session.  Unfortunately, when I woke up, I didn't want to come to the computer.  When I did, I began avoiding my work.  Here is the poem I wrote.

Snowy covered page

Crisp clean, black smudged words

Dread, fear of failure

But, now I believe that I have put off my work long enough.