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Imagine If You Can

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Imagine if you can

Living in a foreign land

Living with God

In total content

Imagine life in a canyon wide

Where you can fly

See from up high

Where only beauty exists

Only peace and calm

Do not resist

Rest in God’s arms

From way up high

From morning to nigh

Copyright 2017 Debbie Pierce

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Mississippi Gulf Coast: A coastal bird’s view of the activities of a marina

coastal bird may 9

The morning has passed by slowly as the coastal bird sits on a fence post at the marina. The coastal bird has already had his breakfast and has found a place to rest and observe the activity of the marina for a while. People are interesting to watch and will occasionally share a portion of food.

The people have come through the gates taking things to their boats. The sun is shining and it is a beautiful day to be out in the gulf. Some of the boats are quite large and carry many people to the barrier island in the distance for a day. Others take the small kayak into the small bay for a morning of relaxation. There is a small group of people coming in to take out the sailboats.

In the distance there is a group of fishermen spending the day at the end of the pier. The fishing is good here. The coastal bird remembers the abundance of fish eaten at breakfast. Later in the day there will be more birds joining him for the evening feast.

It is midmorning and time for the lunch crowd to begin ambling in for the noon meal. At first the day is slow for the restaurant with only a few people on the patio. The coastal bird sits on this perch each day waiting for a few patrons of the restaurant to break the no feeding the birds rule. Crackers are a wonderful treat.

The coastal bird observes a group of elderly people being escorted onto the patio. The men and women are dressed in shorts with colorful shirts. They look old with their weathered skin. The coastal bird closely listens to the conversation at this table.

The patrons of this table are discussing their latest retirement ventures. It seems that these people are fond of boating and travel. They discuss how warm it is in this part of the country. It is still cold in the north and they are glad that the decision was made to move here. These people are happy and laughing as the noon meal appears on the table.

The next group of people arrive at the restaurant and are escorted to a table at the end of the patio. It is a younger couple holding hands. The coastal bird listens as the man tells the waitress that they are newly married and on their honeymoon. Perhaps this young couple will break the rules and throw out some crackers. The couple observes the view of the gulf while waiting for their lunch. The sun is still shining brightly.

The restaurant is full now as the lunch crowd has grown larger. The coastal bird has only had one cracker this morning. A man tossed one near the fence on the way out of the restaurant. It was a quick snack but not enough to last the afternoon.

A group of people are in the parking lot looking at the coastal bird. They decide to take some pictures of the coastal bird before going on to the next destination. The bird decides to stand regally on the fence. Pictures are taken and the coastal bird is rewarded with a small cracker from the lunch table. The coastal bird believes that for posing for the pictures the reward should have been greater.

Lunch ends and the restaurant closes until the evening meal. The coastal bird flies to the gulf water and picks up some fish from the water. A great afternoon snack to keep up his strength and remain healthy.

This afternoon there is a kayak race in inlet surrounding the marina. There are people in the race of all ages. There are people surrounding the pier and beach watching the race. Excitement rules the day as people leave little bits of leftover food on the ground as the race progresses. The coastal bird lands near the food and snacks on the small pieces.

Finally the kayak race ends and the people head to the restaurant for the evening meal. The coastal bird returns to his post on the fence and watches the day’s events come to an end. The boats return to the marina with people tired and some with a sunburn. The people tie the boats to the marina slots and leave for the day.

The sun sets on the horizon and the coastal bird reflects upon the day. The gulf waters have been generous with the fish to keep him healthy. There has been generosity from the people visiting the kayak races and restaurant. Life is good thought the coastal bird as he heads into the sunset to rest in his nest. Tomorrow is another day to visit the marina.

Copyright 2017 Debbie Pierce

 

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bridges culture daily prompt inspiration intentional living life lifestyles Mississippi preservation story telling

Designing and Building Bridges: A Guide to a Happy Life

ms gulf coast bridge may 9

Mississippi has beautiful bridges. Some are draw bridges that let the big ships come through on the coast. Others cross the rivers and creeks allowing people and cars to safely navigate the roads and highways. There is such beauty in how big and regal bridges stand along the highways.

My father worked as a civil engineer designing bridges all over the state. As a child he would point out every small aspect of a bridge. Every bridge he worked on made up a part of his life. They were a trace of who he was. He often used these bridges to point out life lessons for me.

The first life lesson for me is to respect the life surrounding you. Before a bridge can be designed and built a site must be chosen and surveyed. The ecosystem surrounding the bridge is studied for the effect the bridge will have on the wildlife. Many bridges in Mississippi have been delayed or moved through the years due to the effects on the ecosystem.

A healthy ecosystem is important to all of us. Making a few small changes in lives to protect our environment is easy and as a daily habit hardly noticeable. One small sign of respect for life is not throwing trash on our highway systems. It is an easy habit to develop and makes a positive significant difference in the ecosystems.

The second life lesson for me is to design your life for positive improvement. The design of the bridge is a complement to its surroundings. If the bridge has design flaws then the environment will falter. My father believed that we should be a positive example for the people that we came in contact with. My life should be filled with kindness and compassion toward everyone that I meet.

Sometimes kindness and compassion are difficult to show in the extreme difficulties of life. It is hard to practice these concepts in a world that is cruel and bitter. Sometimes circumstances force us to see the evil that is abundant in this world. But a few kind words and compassion can cause a small light to shine that will spread and overcome some of the evil in the world. A bit of the bitterness and cruel behavior is changed by one small act of kindness.

The third life lesson was that there should be strength in my character. Bridges are built with strong concrete and bearings. They are made to withstand the harsh elements and the many pounds of weight that the bridge is subject to each day. Thus it was to be with my character as shown by strength in my integrity and hard work to sustain the harsh realities of life.

The fourth lesson was to see the larger picture and realize that the issues of life were just passing through. Draw bridges have points where the bridge will split and let the large boats go through. These bridges are fascinating to watch. In a small span of time they will open and let the ship pass. Then the bridge will close and the traffic pattern will return to normal.

In times of crisis we are often in conflict with one another. Working together can be difficult at times. Remembering that the common goal of solving an issue requires comprise and diplomacy. By letting the small issues pass through then we can work on the larger issues that affect all of us. The conflict can be resolved and perhaps the circumstances can be improved for all people.

The fifth lesson was build relationships that will last a lifetime. There are many old bridges in Mississippi that are still standing after new bridges have been built to replace them. The old steel keeps them strong and many are used as piers or alternate routes in times of adversity. Like the old bridges new relationships are entered but there is a place for the old ones to be nurtured and cherished.

old bridge picture of daddy's

The final life lesson is to understand that bridges bring cultures and people together. By working with a diversity of  people we can all benefit. Bridges are wonderful in that they take the road in two directions. One side will bring things into one place and the other side will take things to another place. Both sides of the bridge are equally important and should be respected.

My father has been gone for many years now. I love to travel the highways and roads of Mississippi and see the bridges that he took part in designing. He left a legacy of helping to secure strong bridges to connect people. This is the lesson that carries me through this life.

Copyright 2017 Debbie Pierce

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One Lovely Blog Award

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Thank you Avid Observer for nominating my blog for the One Lovely Blog Award.

Rules:
• Each nominee must thank the person who nominated them and link their blog in their post.
• They must include the rules and add the blog award badge as an image.
• Must add 7 facts about themselves.
• Nominate 15 people to do the award!
________________________________________
7 Fun/ interesting facts about me:

  1. I am a registered nurse.
  2. Gardening is an exciting adventure
  3. I love volunteering my time in the community
  4. My cooking skills are entertaining to watch
  5. I love Snoopy
  6. Ancient Aliens is a fun show to watch
  7. I own a red rider BB gun

My nominees for One Lovely Blog Award :

  1. Reactionary Tales
  2. yesthismoment
  3. grammywritesblogs
  4. Thys
  5. cookiesandmoo
  6. Humanity Lives On
  7. Edge of Humanity Magazine
  8. intenttowin
  9. KE Garland
  10. bekas journal
  11. mumsthewordblog1
  12. Peter Adewumi
  13. simple Ula
  14. jakeowensby
  15. Linda J Wolf

I want to thank everyone for taking the time to read my blog. I have learned so much about the world and life from all of you. Thank you for sharing your world with me.

 

 

 

 

 

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culture daily prompt inspiration intentional living life lifestyles Mississippi story telling

Paths to Achieve Life Dreams

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We all have visions of things that we wish to achieve in life. The journey through life has many twists and turns that ultimately lead us to where we wish to be. There have been recent events in my life that have led to a detonation toward a dream of mine.

Every summer beginning in my young teenage years  the car would be packed for a week at the beach. The first hint of this being an ultimate destiny for me came at about age twelve. It was early June and my father decided that we would stay on the beach at a hotel.

The hotel was large for the time period and directly on the beach. There was an indoor pool, game room, and direct access to the beach. Our room was on the ground level and we were allowed to roam around on the first floor alone. That first sense of freedom was wonderful.

The waves coming in from the gulf were wonderful to ride on using a raft. You could go out a short distance and ride in with only a minimal amount of sand splashing into the raft. This daily activity would be repeated each day of the vacation.

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These vacations detonated a desire to live near the beach. The sense of freedom and a slower lifestyle appealed to me. The years passed and other things in life took precedent over this dream.

Our journey through life will often take us places to prepare us for the fulfilling of certain dreams. Often there is a purpose to our dreams that will serve to aid other people when achieved. For some people this purpose may come from their career fields.

There are people who begin preparing for their dreams at an early age. Often these people will start building upon the things necessary to fulfill their dream. A child wanting to be an engineer may begin to build things at an early age. Another child wanting to become a doctor may take many science classes in school while volunteering at a clinic or hospital.

Another path to a dream is a succession of jobs that build a person’s skills. Each new step in the career path leads to the skill needed to achieve a dream. This may take the form of a person wishing to own a business.

The person will pick a business that interests them. The next step will be to work for people who already own that type of business. By working and learning how the business works the person will have the skills necessary to be successful on their own.

An example of this path is a person who is a mechanic and wants to own a shop. The person may take a vocational program and begin work for a major shop. Through the years this person will learn the trade and the other skills required to own a successful business.

There are other trades that require an apprenticeship before being able to work alone. This may be a carpenter or an electrician. Once the skill is mastered under the tutelage of an experienced carpenter or  electrician the person is able to achieve success alone.

My dream of living near the beach has taken many twists and turns. The journey through life has taken me to places to learn some life lessons. My life has been guided through learning business skills and health care skills.

There have been times when I have deviated off the path to my dreams and pursued other interests. These have been learning experiences that have shaped the way that I view the world.

Recent events have caused me to once again remember that long ago dream to live near the beach. Often there are events in life that are catalysts to the places that we need to be. There have been recent changes in the neighborhood where my family lives that have provided a clear path to move to another place.

We have decided to move near the beach in the next several months. This will be an exciting new adventure for our family. I am looking forward to achieving this dream.

sea oat ms gulf coast may 9

The place where we are moving has a wonderful artistic atmosphere where my husband can continue to enhance his artistic pursuits. He is a wonderful writer and painter.

For me the beach offers the opportunity to serve in the community. There will be places where my health care skills will be needed. It is a wonderful transition in life and I am excited to be able to share these new experiences in this blog. My soul is nourished with the expectation of renewal.

copyright 2017 Debbie Pierce

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Volunteering: Infusing Life With Joy

cropped-white-flowers-at-ms-art-museum-april-20

We live in a world that is filled with turmoil. There is war, poverty, and disease. The news leads us to believe that this what consumes the world and there is no hope. Many people believe that there are several solutions to world issues. I believe that one of the best ways to conquer world issues is to begin at home.

Volunteering has been a part of my life for sometime. The concept of using the gifts that God gave me is appealing. These are some of the ways that I have been using these talents for the last several years in my local community.

Hunger is an issue in many inner city communities. This is often a hidden issue that not many people realize is occurring. We are used to seeing the severe effects of hunger on the television. But here in America there are many people who are not able to feed their families for the entire month. These people have jobs but the money will run out before the month ends.

One solution to this issue is the food banks, community centers, and churches in my local area. Many people frequent these places in hopes of help in getting enough food to fill the end of the month until the next paycheck.

blueberry cobbler may 14

It is easy to help these centers by buying additional food every week and making a donation each month. A large number of people are reached through these services and it is a great feeling to know that I helped someone in their time of crisis.

Another issue in my local community is homelessness. There are a fair number of people without a home in the inner city. The city that I live in provides a fair amount of services to aid in this issue.

Volunteering in local shelters and in missions designed to help the homeless is a great way to help conquer this issue. Many homeless people are grateful for someone willing to bring them food and clothing. It is a comfort to many of them just to have someone listen to the issues that caused them to become homeless.

homeless bill standing may 6

A simple way that people can help the homeless is to fill a small plastic bag with soap, some change, toiletries, and crackers or small cans of meat. This small gesture will help many of the homeless survive until they are ready to seek help for the issues that sent them to the street.

Medical insurance is an issue that is greatly debated in this country for the last several years. It is not an easy issue to solve. A part of the solution to the issue in my local community is to develop small free or low-cost clinics to the uninsured and high deductible health insurance population. This population is quite large.

I volunteer at a church based low-cost clinic once a month. This clinic is busy and is filled with people having minor medical issues. These clinics are not designed to deal with major illnesses or disease processes.

It is a blessing to be able to aid people in the clinic and provide basic health information. There is a lack of education on many of the common disease processes in this country. The people entering the clinic are given a basic health screening and seen by a doctor. These clinics are staffed by volunteers and there is no compensation.

For many of the people who enter this clinic it is the only medical care that they will receive. Education is important and the people we served repeatedly tell us how grateful they are for this service.

Another area that I volunteer in is summer camp for inner city children. These camps aid the children in areas that are often not available in other  areas of their lives. One summer I taught piano to a small group of students.

One day each week for two months they were given lessons in how to play the piano and music. Several of these children were quite gifted and acquired enough knowledge in music to apply to the arts programs at their schools.

Volunteering has been a great blessing to me. I am unable to change all of the world’s issues. My soul is nourished by the things that I have learned from the people who I have met. They have given me far more than the talents that I have shared with them.

Community service in the form of volunteering is easy and only takes a small amount of time. Can you find the time to give of your talents to solve some issues in a your part of the world?

copyright 2017 Debbie Pierce

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Soul Searching in the Grand Canyon

Grand Canyon Survive

The Grand Canyon National Park is filled with beautiful open spaces between the canyons. It is one of God’s great blessings to be able to observe the natural beauty of this place. The blue, orange, pink, and brown hues grow deeper as the sun moves throughout the canyon during the day. It provides a canvas to explore and discover new things within our souls.

It is difficult to imagine that the Colorado River carved this canyon. The river appears so small in the vastness of the crevices of the canyon. There are many places in the Grand Canyon to park or hike that are quiet and serene. It is easy to listen to God and search within your soul for answers to some of life’s questions.

It was a curious time in my life. I had a job that provided a comfortable income but no real challenges. Each day it was a chore to get out of bed and go to work with a positive attitude. I felt like a trapped animal unable to move on.

The relationships in my life were also a drama. Everything was always in turmoil as the people around me were content to argue and perpetuate bitterness and hatred. It was taxing just to get out of bed and deal with life.

The people surrounding me were miserable. They had substance abuse issues and were unwilling to seek help. Manipulation ruled their lives and had a profound effect on mine. It was not a joyous time in my life.

Change is a difficult thing. When we are familiar with everything in our lives there is a strange sense of contentment. We believe that everyone in our lives is essential to survival no matter what the cost.

One morning while visiting the canyon we parked the truck and walked out onto one of the canyons to observe the surrounding area. After a few minutes I decided to sit and absorb all of the beauty surrounding me. It had been a difficult year filled with decisions and this seemed the appropriate place to sort out my feelings about life.

I slowly relaxed as the sun and the morning coolness surrounded me. Taking deep breaths it felt like I was becoming a part of the canyon. The sounds of nature were clear and in harmony. There were a few birds rustling the bushes in searching for food. A whistling sound in the wind was harmonic as it cascaded across the canyon.

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The issues that had been bothering me melted away and seemed small in comparison to the world now surrounding me. For a brief moment it was just me sitting on this canyon. Living in that moment was a freeing experience.

I meditated on this canyon for a while praying to God for answers on how to go forward in life. In the silence I had a revelation and now the answer was clear. It was time to move on.

Standing up I took one last look at the vastness of the canyon. The blue, orange, red, and purple hues appeared to be sparkling in the reflection of the afternoon sun. Walking back to the truck I felt more alive than I had in a long time.

It was now time to return home and put into action the revelations that I had on the overlook of that canyon. Change was still frightening but now there was a renewed sense of purpose in my life.

I had decided that the best course of action was to leave the world which had been my home for many years. It took some research but I found a new city filled with nature and all the things that I enjoyed. It was time to move on and create some new dreams.

Finding a job in a new city was not as difficult as I had imagined. There is an abundance of opportunity if you are willing to search for it. The new job promised to be challenging and provided opportunities for advancement.

I moved to a new apartment and began the process of searching for a new group of friends. Talking to all the people I came into contact with provided a network of people with similar interests. It was not long before this network became like a family to me.

Many years have passed since that day on top of the canyon. Leaving all the friends that I had ever known was difficult but worth the journey. There have been many adventures and life is joyful. My soul is nourished daily with the love and companionship of my husband and friends. I have no regrets and each day thank God for his guidance and blessings. I survived that season of my life.

copyright 2017 Debbie Pierce

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Reblog: https://writingforme1961.wordpress.com/2017/05/23/what-we-really-need/

I’ve been watching TV, ok I’ve been mesmerized by Netflix. Instead of looking for what is new, I’ve been watching older shows. I’ve seen all the Twilight Zones from the 1960’s over the years until I have them memorized, so I started with Night Gallery which ran in the 1970’s (that I actually remember as […]

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The Adventure of Living an Intentional Life

fallen limb in reservoir outlook march 31

The morning was cold and the rain was coming down in sheets. I had been in this new city for about a month and my life was adrift. Gathering my things and heading out to work it seemed as though the weather was a reflection of my life at this moment.

It had begun as an exciting adventure with high expectations. After graduating from nursing school there had been a job offer in a city far from home. It would be my first time to live so far away from family and friends. The new city seemed to offer everything that home lacked.

The loneliness had set in about two weeks into my new adventure. There was a lot to do in this new city but no one to share the experience with. Getting out of my car at the hospital I was pondering on how to solve this dilemma. The wind was pulling at my umbrella this morning as a car splashed water on me as I crossed the street. The parking lot was across the street from the hospital. At the time solving the issue of loneliness in this new city seemed out of reach.

It is an enlightening experience caring for people who are ill. When taken into perspective I realized that everyone has an issue and there are solutions to life’s problems. This is the point where I decided to explore the city and make new friends by living intentionally.

Intentional living is exploring life by doing things with a purpose. There was a reason that this new city was appealing to me. It had beautiful mountains with trails to hike and rivers with rapids to kayak. There were beautiful sunrises and sunsets to observe. There were music venues that featured up and coming artists. It was a city filled with life.

I began my intentional living by attempting to make new friends. People are really quite friendly when asked about their interests. It was not long before I found a few people with interests similar to mine.

The next weekend I met a few people at a local river where kayaking was popular. The river sparkled in the morning sun and the morning was cool. It was not long before we were laughing and exchanging stories of the river. At noon it was time to stop and have lunch. We had packed coolers filled with food and found some shady spots among the trees to picnic.

pelahatchie bay river 1 april 12

One of our conversations was discussing how lonely it was to be in a new place. Many of the people with me were travel nurses who changed locations every three months. They commented that living intentionally was a great way to fully experience the adventures of a new city.

In each new city they would choose the activities that interested them. Then plans would be made to do each of these things. They would not be adrift because everything would serve a purpose. This made each new adventure fun and exciting.

We finished our lunch and began to kayak down the river once again. The temperature had risen and the cool river water felt wonderful. Going over the rapids increased the joy in this trip. Soon we were back at our starting point and everyone headed home. It was a wonderful day.

Back at my apartment I began to apply intentional living to other parts of my life. Exploring the history of this city was important to me so I began to visit the local museums. At each museum there was usually someone from the area who would explain the local traditions. It is easy to find friendly people in most places if you take the time to ask people about their surroundings.

I also began to apply intentional living to my finances. The new city was expensive and I had wondered how to make ends meet. My new job paid well but there are times when my wants did not meet the budget. By living intentionally I was able to do everything that was truly important to me. Letting go of the small things enabled me to have an adventure and save money.

After two months in the new city I was not adrift. Things were no longer overwhelming and now it is beginning to feel like home. Intentional living has been wonderful and made this journey a joy. The weather is warm now and I am excited to continue this adventure.

copyright 2017 Debbie Pierce

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