Monday, January 15, 2018


As I finished my yoga routine this morning, the sun broke through the morning fog and poured down on my face and body. I was blinded by the power of the light and warmed by its energy. I felt immediately blessed. I had encountered light earlier this morning in the words of Martin Luther King: “Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only LIGHT can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only LOVE can do that.”

I began to recall scriptures that I learned in my youth and then look for more references:

Isaiah 60: 1 Arise! Shine! Your LIGHT has come; the LORD's glory has shone upon you.

John 1:3-5 “Everything that came into being though the Word, and without the Word nothing came into being. What came into being through the Word was life, and the life was the LIGHT for all people. The LIGHT shines in the darkness and the darness doesn't extinguish the LIGHT.

Psalm 119: 105 “Your word is a lamp for my feet, a LIGHT on my path.”

Matthew 4: 16 The people living in darkness have seen a great LIGHT on those living in the land of the shadow of death a LIGHT has dawned.”

John 8:12 Jesus spoke to the people again, saying, "I am the LIGHT of the world. Whoever follows me won't walk in darkness but will have the LIGHT OF LIFE."

I John 1 5-7: This is the message that we have heard from him and announce to you: "GOD IS LIGHT and there is no darkness in him at all." If we claim, "We have fellowship with him," and live in the darkness, we are lying and do not act truthfully. But if we live in the light in the same way as he is in the light, we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from every sin. 

Matthew 5:14-16 You are the LIGHT of the world. A city on top of a hill can't be hidden. Neither to people light a lamp and put it under a basket. Instead, they put it on top of a lampstand, and it shines on all who are in the house. In the same way, let your LIGHT shine before people, so they can see the good things you do and praise your Father who is in heaven.

I Peter 2: 9 "But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people who are God's own possession. You have become this people so that you may speak of the wonderful acts of the one who called you out of darkness into his amazing LIGHT."

Light is Hope
Light is Love
Light is Life
Light is God

Receive the Light
Live in the Light
Share the Light

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Hiwassee Wildlife Refuge

Meet my new friends from Hiwassee Wildlife Refuge. The formerly endangered Sandhill Cranes gather there by the thousands every winter. This year a few came up close and personal. We migrate there every winter to visit them. The water was very low this year, as was the diversity of species. In the far distance, from the Cherokee Removal Park, I spotted a flock of white pelicans. They were too far away to get a good id, even with my spotting scope. 

I think these are a flock of white pelicans seen from the Cherokee Removal Park viewing area.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

We Endure

On this last day of the year, as I reflect on 2017, I see in this year the rise of the woman's voice. Beginning with the Woman's March in January, continuing through the state and local elections, where woman candidates and the vote of women changed the electoral landscape, and continuing through the #MeToo movement of the fall, women have stood strong and made their voice heard.

As I think about women I know, that I have known, and that are part of my personal history, I realize that a woman's strength has also been in her ability to endure, to stand fast in the face of adversity, to overcome by her faithfulness in the everyday tasks of making a life. The following is offered to women who endure.

We endure.
It's what we do,
We women.
We endure

Men can walk away,
Children don't understand,
But we women,
We endure.

Life and love,
Childbirth and heartbreak, 
First steps and last breaths.
We embrace it all.

It's what we do.
What else is there?
We women,
We endure.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

An UnCivil War

In early December, Bill and I visited Anna and Jake, and Heather, Jarrett, Jackson and Felicity.  We enjoyed family time and getting to know our great-nephew and niece.

We also spent some time at the Manassas Battlefield National Park and on the way home, we visited Appomattox Court House. We saw the beginning of the Civil War at Manassas and the end at Appomattox.

An UnCivil War
From the first battle to the last gasp,
From Manassas to Appomattox.
Brave soldiers died,
Six hundred thousand and more.
The South won the battles, but lost the war.
They stood “like a stone wall” in defense
of a cause doomed from its conception.
Justice, freedom and union prevailed.
If they will still prevail,
There can be no rest in their defense today.

Manassas - the beginning

The First Battle of Manassas (Bull Run) was fought in July, 1861.
It was the first major battle of the Civil War.
The Second Battle of Manassas (Bull Run) was fought in August, 1862.

The Confederate victory emboldened Lee to push north, on a path that led to Gettysburg.

Henry House

Elderly Judith Carter Henry was the first and only civilian casualty of the First Battle of Manassas. She refused to evacuate and she, her daughter and their servant were caught in the battle as shells hit their house. She died from injuries sustained when the house was shelled.
Throughout both First and Second Manasses, battles raged around Henry Hill.
A monument to all those killed in the battle was placed behind the house.  

Stone House, near Henry House

Cannon pointed toward Henry House

General Thomas Jackson's courageous defense rallied the Confederate troops,

turning the tide of battle in their favor. He earned the name “Stonewall Jackson” at First Manassas.    

Stonewall Jackson

Peaceful fields, trails and fences recall how the battlefields must have looked before the war.

From the Confederate victory at the First Battle of Manasses in July 1861 the Civil War would continue for four more years, costing hundreds of thousands of lives.
It finally ended for Lee and the South at the Battle of Appomattox Court House. Terms of surrender were signed at the McLean House.
Family lore places Aulcie Crawford Jackson at the battle and
witness to a meeting between Grant and Lee.

A.C. Jackson → Anna Jackson Renshaw → Mozelle Renshaw Whitaker → William Robert Whitaker

Apomattox Court House

McLean House at Appomattox - the end.


Sunday, October 29, 2017

Classic Sunsets

Oct 7 - No sunset before the hurricane, just this awesome waterspout

Oct 10 - Catch at Sunset

Oct 12 - Dolphin cruise in the pass

Oct 17 - Not our rods, but could be.

Oct 17 solitary beach walk
Oct 17 - Sunset seen through sea oats

Oct 23, Sunset with moon - from our balcony
Oct 27 - Fishing on a stormy day, just before sunset

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Favorite Shells

Bonnie and I enjoyed shelling on Monday and Tuesday...
the only days that shells have been abundant

Monday's collection

Tuesdays Collection

Knobbed whelk

Olive and Auger

Fragment of a Moon Snail - Shark's Eye

Large Notched Sand Dollar

same sand dollar, different vies

Lightening whelk, about 7 inches


Pen Shells, largest about 7 inches

Broken starfish bottom
Broken starfish top



Left-handed Lightening Whelks and  Right-handed Knobbed Whelks

Atlantic Cockles and ?

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

With Bonnie, Oct 19-24

10/18 - First Stop, Flora-Bama for a Bushwhacker. Only a 1 mile walk back!
10/19 - Mobile Bay Ferry from Ft. Morgan to Dauphin Island

10/19 - Estuarium from the ferry
10/23 - At the Pass

10/23 At the pass with shells

Heron on the balcony

10/24 - We made it across the jettys

10/24 - Exploring the pool

10/19 - Ferry to Dauphin Is

10/20 - Valient fight