03/30/14

Begin Again Wherever You Land

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Torrey Pines Nature Reserve and Beach are a haven and playground for me so when I see others enjoying the park and I’m asked to take a photo or people are taking photos of each other, and it feels right, I will ask, “Would you like a photo together? What brought you to Torrey Pines? Are you from the area or visiting?” I’ve met the most interesting people and had some of the most surprising and incredibly heart felt present moment exchanges and photo memories like this one on a recent Saturday:

What brought you to Torrey Pines? “We love it here. My girls are happy because their nanny and her friend are here visiting them from New York. My wife died of breast cancer a year ago. We brought her here to get treatment and my two daughters and I stayed to start a new life.”

That was not the story I expected to hear. It’s so easy to make assumptions and judgments. About people. About family dynamics. About everything. In the few minutes before I approached this man while watching the five of them play at the water’s edge, my mind whirred with what their family story might be, never anticipating his answer and immediately feeling a range of emotions from sadness to inspiration to gratitude as I listened to him talk.

I’ve thought many times about this connection since then – not only admiring his courage and devotion to his daughters, but also my own thoughts about family and starting over.

Lots to still consider but this I know: Family comes in all shapes and sizes and you can begin again wherever you land.

What do you believe about family and new beginnings?

Thanks for sharing!
02/14/14

Love and Happy Valentine’s Day from Torrey Pines Reserve

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Happy Full Moon Valentine’s Day from the top of Torrey Pines!

For as long as I’ve walked these trails I’ve imagined capturing the love and light of people walking in silhouette to the sun and moon and hills here. Finally it happened recently - and spontaneously.

Just before the trail meets the beach I looked up and saw these women passing above. I raised my arm and put up my index finger in the air, hoping to catch their attention. They stopped. I started spelling out the word LOVE with my arms. One by one they started mirroring my gestures – L-O-V-E.

I’m not sure what Lovely Ladies Five and Six on the right were doing, maybe spelling Love backwards, but I am sure that LOVE shows up in the most unlikely places when we show up with an open heart and let the presence of the moment lead the way.

What are you sure of about LOVE?

Thanks for sharing!
12/31/13
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Where Did You Grow Roots This Year?

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There is this amazing group of trees on my walk around my neighborhood in the morning, each of them with different root patterns that called to me this morning. Maybe they will call to you too: Where did you grow roots this year? Did those roots strengthen you or are they holding you back? What roots do you want to deepen, uproot or grow this coming year?

Wishing you a day of celebrating all the roots you grew in 2013 and a meaningful, joyous, and love-filled 2014.

Thanks for sharing!