7:20 am – I am still sitting here staring at the fog and listening to the staccato of the rain on the metal roof. It has a rhythm and a musical quality to it. Combined with the morning fog and the solitary trickles of water meandering down the window. The birds settling on the vines beside the feeder awaiting their morning treats. The cats watching intently to see if one of the small finches or chickadees settles to the ground within pouncing distance.

Slowly, the cats turn to the door as the floor pops and settles under my feet. I hear them stirring in the heated crawl spaces dislodging themselves from the dry blankets and brushing against the ductwork. More birds descent from the brush and trees. A song of chirps, tweets and coos begins to feel the air.

The pink glow of the morning sun attempts to burn through the fog chasing away the purple predawn gloom with its light. Across the field, a kestrel takes flight, climbing above the fallow fields in search of a meal.

Somewhere an engine roars to life and warms the interior of a car and drives the shroud of mistiness from the windows. A transmission grinds in protest before succumbing to the pressure of a frustrated driver. Gravel flies as wheels seek traction in a heated spinning rush of a late occupant of the car.

Behind me, I hear a shuffling and a stirring. Perhaps even a bit of a snore and cough. I am reminded that I am not alone this morning. My niece is staying with me for a few days. Then the thoughts of the morning quietude are replaced with thoughts of what do eleven year olds eat for breakfast? Do they eat breakfast? Do they know how to cook their own?

Any thoughts are welcome relief from the mindless wanderings of my mind through the night. Wishes and thoughts of changing things, making things brighter and different in a friend’s life. It is that time of morning that I resign myself to the fact that life goes forward the way fate has predetermined regardless of my sleepless appeals for relief from higher powers and sentient, benevolent deities. My night spent in thought and humble supplication drifts into another day of accepting the course of life and my inability to wave a magic wand over loved ones and ease their pain and drive away the nightmares.

In a ritual of futility, I pour out the last of a pot of coffee, I bring to an end the flickering flame of the oil lamp and grin at the irony of its scented vespers rising to be dispersed by the ceiling fan. Then I resign myself once more to the thought free oblivion that brings with it rest and comfort. I enter that place in my mind before a thought is even formed; before a fear can even arise and give birth to anxiety. Rest will come in hour long fits of tossing. Fear of missing an update or a report will keep me just there beneath the surface of that veil that separates this waking world from that of dream like fairies and apparitions that alternately soothe and vex.

I will wish and hope and I will believe for you because so much of me has begun to doubt. I will hold forth to my wavering soul the words of the author of the epistle: faith is the substance of things hoped for. I will present that building block, that raw material that it may be taken and crafted and woven through the fabric of reality and create a miracle of health and vigor.

These are the things I mean when I whisper, “you know.” This is what it means when, with breaking voice and water glistened eyes, I ask you to tell everyone I am thinking of them. This is what it means for me to be strong for you and here for you.



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Originally uploaded by jwill9311

Just remembering that I once took photos.



I am a wall builder. No. I do not mean that I am a carpenter. I mean I am a wall builder. Personal relationships scare me. They hurt me and I shy away from them. Which makes me a wall builder. I construct walls between me and other people. I do it in a variety of ways. I try to make everything a joke, I find something that I know bothers the other person and I will pick at it and I hide as much of my personal life as I can. I am damn good at it too. I have very few close friends. Ok So I have one.

The funny part of the situation is that I fuss at my friend all the time for building walls. They need time alone and just some quiet space on occasion as do we all. What do I do when they try to retreat to that place. I beat on the doors of the wall, I try to jump up to see over it and even pound my head into the wall until I am laying aside bruised and battered and they have to come out from behind the wall and reassure me that everything is okay.

In the past year, I opened myself up to new experiences and a new openness of myself to others. It has been scary. There have been times that I have been scared of where my emotions and feelings were taking me. I have been scared of my abilities in ways I have never been before. I am realizing that part of being open to others is beginning to grow concerned about their feelings also. For the first time in my life, I have been worried about disappointing people. Of falling short of their expectations of who I am and falling short of what they looking for me to be.

A friend of mine used a phrase this year that struck me as interesting. They spoke of falling for a situation. I am tiptoeing through this whole new found openness with just that sense in my mind. I am not sure if I like the idea of being open to others more than the actual being open to them.

This blog is going to go a long way into discovering which it is. Some of you reading these blogs will have heard some of this before. Maybe several times before, but I am going to strive to be more forthcoming about myself and my hopes dreams. So buckle in, open your eyes to the world around you and get ready. Right now we have a full tank of gas and I am ready to mash the accelerator to the floor and see where this goes. It may run straight into a wall sometime in January but the plan is to run full throttle through a new year of blogging and sharing and growing and tearing down some walls that I have built.



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Coffee. Oh you sweet wonderful elixir of the gods, how i love you. Coffee has been a companion of mine for a long time. My grandmother introduced it to me at a young age. She treated me to something she called milk coffee. Now while she didn’t steam the milk, I suspect that my grandmother served me my first latte. It was probably a Community Coffee latte at that.

I must admit that I have never graduated to the more serious coffee drinks though. I am still a bold brew with room for cream guy. On a crazy day, I get some hazelnut syrup in it. I have tried the cappuccinos and the lattes and caramel macchiatos, but i always come back to a simple bold brew.

Now the one coffee drink that makes no sense to me is the americano. It is a shot of espresso with hot water added to fill the cup. I think it is a drink for people who wanna look sophisticated and drink espresso drinks but still like that see the bottom of the cup feel of diner coffee. Now that is some stuff that i think turns most people off to coffee. They are used to drinking that flavored hot water that you get at Shoney’s or Denny’s. They haven’t really tasted a full-bodied coffee. Now I am not saying that I can taste the fruit accents that all the drinking notes list for various coffees, but i can tell the difference between a cup of Pike’s Place and Folger’s. And I can definitely tell when I am drinking a cup of that diner coffee that i can see the bottom of the cup through.

Another thing that I can’t understand is iced coffees. I have been known to drink a frappucino (bottled and fresh blended), but coffee on ice. Ice is for bumps on the head and sodas.



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I am sitting here really wondering what the Amish do in the winter. I mean there is only so many candles you can have to light the house after 4:30 pm. I mean that keeps you from even reading a book to keep from being bored. And how do they stay warm? Do they believe in gas furnaces? I mean there can only be so much wood that you can cut to keep the stove burning or the fireplace blazing.

I have been using the NYT Reader to read the paper and have glanced around Flickr and Twitter for a bit. I have even fed, planted, collected and supplied all I can in my Facebook apps. It is only 8:18 and I am trying to find something to do. The television is the same old foolishness and I have read all the books I have laying around. Even editing photos has become somewhat tedious this evening.

It is bad when your hobby and “job” are not even keeping your boredom at bay. I suppose it could be worse, I could be so busy and stressed that I couldn’t stop. I may be back to blog more later. No Really. Things are that slow around here tonight.

Possible New Year’s Resolutions

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1. I’m going to try not to use more than 10 plastic/brown paper grocery bags in the year, which means always carrying a reusable bag.

No really. As I was cleaning out the cabinets in the kitchen and the laundry room, I found at least ten canvas bags and four insulated bags. I always ask for paper anyway when i am at the store because i forget to take these things back. I hate the plastic bags mainly because the sackers seem to be bound and determined to give me 20 of them on each visit no matter how many things i buy. I am serious, I have gotten home with some bags with one thing in them. There is nothing I hate more than carrying all those sacks in the house. I have to make 4-5 trips into the house. Not bad in nice weather, but it is miserable in the rain, snow or 100 degree heat.

2. Eat healthier. People are so worried about what they eat between Christmas and the New Year, but they really should be worried about what they eat between the New Year and Christmas. I am serious about this one. Not only do i need to because of my diabetes, but i am beginning to think that I cannot survive on instant foods that are made by adding hot water. okay, coffee doesn’t count there. I am going to start using those canvas bags to buy some fresh fruits and vegetables everyday and try to actually eat them before they turn to mush in the crisper drawer.
More of these later

Mountain Climbing

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When my brother and I were younger our house was on a cliff beside the KY River. I can remember it being at least 40-50 feet tall and we would climb down it all the time. There was a cave in it also. An Ancient Indian cave with all kinds of artifacts in it I am sure, but it was overgrown with trees and brush.

This summer I returned to our childhood home and took some rope and a hatchet and machete’ with me. I hiked over to the cliff and was surprised. It had obviously eroded severely. It was ten feet at the most. The cave… It had shrunk to a small fissure in the rock. Little more than a crack.

So I was thinking about the other things in my life that I have blown out of proportion over the years. Fotr years, I lived in fear of trying to make a living out of being a photographer. I kept holding myself back from trying to sell my photos. I kept giving them away and i even shot more than one wedding for just the cost of the film. Yes I said film. It was that long ago. Somehow it never connected that if people wanted my photos and wanted me to shoot their weddings then maybe they would be wiling to pay for them. I finally made the leap a few summers ago and bought some lights and equipment and jumped in. It would up being kinda like the cliff and cave. It hasn’t been as hard as I thought. I am still not making a killing, but I am working with someone ele now and making money as a photographer. I look forward to it growing.

And now I just wonder what other things i allowed fears and apprehension to keep me from attempting. I am sure that everyone has things in theior lives that have kept them from reaching out and extending themselves in to the unknown. My one wish for my friends this Christmas is that they would loose themselves from the chains of doubt and the memories of the past and reach out to the future with hope. I want them to see the things that are available to them and see them as reality not just as dreams.


You suppose that you are the lock on the door but you are the key that opens it. — Rumi

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