Archive for the ‘photography’ Category

I Let the Light In

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I let the light in today

Tossed aside the shades and drew the windows wide,

to glimpse upon a beam of golden hope,

a ray of brilliance amidst the dark winter cold


I never had dared let the light in before

For fear that it wouldn’t be mine to keep

A well-guarded window kept safe all I guarded,

a shade to protect against all I held dear


Yet, a small, quiet voice urged me onward today

Steeling my courage, making me bold

And I stepped out from darkness to look at the sky

A sight I had dreamed of, but never pursued


The light was dazzling, although small

peaking through the clouds, daring to shine

It flickered with uncertainty, almost disappearing

A glimmer of promise…but, the light was there


My eyes rebelled at the glorious sight,

for no light had ever shone like this before

So, I silenced my mind, and opened my heart

And took every ounce of it in


I gazed at the light, embracing its warmth,

and the joy that I felt grew inside

I let myself dream, and I let my heart dance

and my soul felt complete and whole


And my spirit knew true happiness

as I dared to indulge in this dream

But I knew, how I knew, that the light could not stay,

and the clouds gently took it away


A sigh of resignation escaped my lips.

I knew I had stolen a moment or two

with a light that inspired me, thrilled me, warmed me

A moment of hope amidst a season of gray


I let myself take just a minute or two

to delight in the thoughts of all that could be

I let the light in for a second today

to imagine what joy and bliss true love could bring.


Welcome to my second addition of poetry to the site!  Here’s a poem that actually was part of a larger work, but I decided to ultimately cut that down and make two different poems.  It’s counterpart will focus around a meadow scene, so be sure to look for that one in the upcoming weeks.  Ideally, I’d love to edit this one and adapt it to fit a solid rhyming scheme.  I just had to get these thoughts down last night, and I knew that if I became too concerned with rhyming, I wouldn’t be as articulate and truthful with my words.

The picture above is also mine.  It was taken around sunset, in a moving car, while riding to Cleveland, Ohio…the sun was a lovely winter gold that afternoon.

Happy reading, all!

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This is an Un-Post

Nope.  No real posts here.

Nada.

Zilch.

Zip.

Zero.

If you’re looking for a real post, try Chase’s latest conversation with his two-year-old. Or Kuhlair’s blog, which features some really awesome pics of the Trevi Fountain in Rome. Or, heck…stumble on over to Clay’s site for an interesting article about Katy Perry and Kelly Clarkson (if you can survive the eye rolls and disgusted sighs that you just did….honestly…it’s a great post).

But, alas…this is not a real post…this is an un-post…the by-product of a busy weekend, filled with rehearsals, voice lessons, vomiting dogs, baked burritos, snore-inducing sermons, Wal-Mart runs, and Moulin Rouge viewings.  I had every intent to write a post today…but, life just got in the way.

So, if a blogger intends to write a post in a forest, and no one sees a post, do they still get credit, hits, and a chance to be Freshly Pressed?!?  Ehh…probably not.

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I was going to write you poetry, dear readers.  I was going to wax nostalgic about past trips to Italy and NYC.  I was going to write another Stick Figure Movie Reviewabout the cotton candy rom-com Letters to Juliet. But, instead I:

1.) Drank two huge glasses of wine

2.) Cleaned up pet stains on my carpets with Oxy-Clean

3.) Did the Saturday Night Fever dance move 37 times at a rehearsal

4.) Indulged in a Baja Chalupa from Taco Bell

5.) Wrote a to-do list while in church, “listening” to a sermon

6.) Steamed my laundry while listening to the recording of Dreamgirls

7.) Ate Baby Back Ribs flavored potato chips for dinner

So, as you can see, I had a massively productive weekend, and that, my friends, is why I cannot offer you anything substantive or worthwhile today.  What I can offer you is this:

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It’s funny because the cat is wearing a hat!

Or this…

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I bet he never leaves the house.

Or even this golden nugget…

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Kind of a convenient place for a Lost-and-Found…

But I can, and will not, be able to offer you any worthwhile post today, featuring funny images, a recap of my weekend, and light banter between author and reader…

 

Wait…

 

 

10 Reasons Why I Could Never Be Friends With A Snowman: Plinky Prompts Thursday

This week’s prompt comes straight from Mama Kat, who runs an awesome website over at www.mamakatslosinit.com.  Every Thursday, she hosts a Writer’s Workshop and offers weekly prompts to inspire creativity.  She then asks her readers to stop back at her site, post a link to your prompt-inspired article, and show some “comment love,” as she would call it.  It’s a wonderful contribution to the Blog-O-Sphere, and it has certainly caught on like wildfire.  You’ll be hearing more about Mama Kat later in the week in my What the #FF?!? Friday feature.

So, without further delay, I present to you the original prompt from Mama’s website…

10 Reasons Why I Could Never Be Friends With…(fill in the blank)

…AND, my answer….


10 Reasons Why I Could Never Be Friends with A Snowman

10.) I’m all for originality and non-conformity, but I could never be a nudist. Snowmen brazenly stand in public, with nothing but a corn cob pipe and some coal buttons to cover their naughty parts.  At least Frosty sported a hat, but his “igloo” at the “South Pole” was still in plain sight, for all to see.

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Photo from Terry Hart

9.) I refuse to go through any type of plastic surgery, while snowmen deem vegetables to be superior upgrades to their own noses.  Really, if you can’t love who you are, who can you love?

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Photo from Ian Baker

8.) And speaking of loving who you are, snowmen are always losing/gaining weight!  They’re never satisfied of their appearance, and are always struggling to change it.  Sure, I’m all for staying healthy through exercise and proper nutrition, but you don’t need to change your appearance to appease someone!  Come February, they all start to look a little thinner…I say they’re just trying to shape up for bikini season.

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Photo from Cartoon Stock

Keep reading my reasons!

What’s My Line?

A good name can get you far in life.  Apple.  Elvis.  Madonna.  Nike.  But, a great tagline can get you remembered.  I am not a crook.  You like me, you really like me!  I’m lovin’ it.   Here’s lookin’ at you, kid.

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In the Blog-O-Sphere, you need to have a great title to attract readers to your sight.  Even with posts, you must be creative, witty, and informative when labeling each and every article.  “A Post About Doctors” is not nearly as fun and enticing as “Turn Your Head and Cough.” A great title can help or hinder a sight from rising to great heights.

When thinking up a moniker for your site, however, there is a sub-title which can be applied, as well.  This is called the tagline, and it serves to offer another label to define your blog.  The taglines I’ve seen have typically been humorous, or even straight to the point.  A blog about travel.  A site for mothers.  Straight from the horse’s mouth.  Over the river and through the woods. A few more words to leave you with to give the blog more character.  Simple and effective.

For the past 2 months, Miracle on 32nd Street has exhibited a very festive holiday theme, which was retired for the season this past Monday.  I also updated my blog picture, opting to also store away the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree logo until next November.  I’m beginning to take down the rest of the holiday remnants, which will be completed by the end of the week, but there is one item that leaves me scratching my head:  the tagline.

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Tag(line)! You’re it! Keep on reading…

Crossing the Finish Line: RAC Challenge Wrap-Up

October 31st: Reflecting on holiday seasons in the past, I wonder why Thanksgiving and Christmas have lost the magic they used to hold many years ago.

November 1st:  Seeking to re-establish that “spark,” I come up with a wacky idea to encourage a more festive holiday attitude within myself and others, as well.  I run it past two people, they give me a vote of confidence, and an idea is born.

November 2nd:  I decide to make the leap and chronicle my experiences on a blog somewhere in Cyberspace.  I research popular blogging sites, ultimately pick Word Press, and create Miracle on 32nd Street.  The idea for RACs (Random Acts of Christmas) is born out of my very first post.

November 2nd, 6:46 PM:  My very first comment arrives in my email inbox.  Heidi becomes my very first poster.

January 1st, 2011:  The first ever RAC Challenge officially wraps up its first season, and goes on hiatus until November 2011.


What a difference a day makes.  One minute, I’m on my way to rehearsal, daydreaming about Christmas and how the holiday spirit has been elusive in years past.  The next day, I’ve gained the title of “blogger”, along with a screen name, website, and one comment.

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What a difference a month makes.  Compare November to December:  in the latter month, I had around 1150 views.  In the former month, I had 2500.  I gained more posters, but more importantly, I gained faithful posters:  people who, like clockwork, continually comment on my writing…people who I now consider as “friends,” although we’ve never actually met face to face.

You can read all about how blogging has changed my life in this article, but this post is dedicated to the RAC Challenge….the idea that started it all.  Now, two months and two days after I initially began my blog, I pause for a moment to reflect on my journey with the RACs and how they have had an amazing impact on who I am and my life in general.

How the RACs changed me…

Crunching the Numbers

Another year down, and another year of possibility has just begun.  It’s weird to think that this blog began “way back” in 2010, and even weirder to receive an email from Word Press giving me the low down on my site stats “for 2010.”  My blog only saw two months of 2010.  Don’t they know it was only yesterday when I endured a difficult birthing process, full of ice chips, epidurals, and breathing exercises, to produce Miracle on 32nd Street?!?

Still, it is pretty neat to see some analyzed site statistics, even though my blog’s just over 2 months old.  And, as you, my readers, are the responsible ones for these stats, I thought it only proper to share them with you.  You are the people responsible for turning this little “project” into a fully blown blog, so I bow down to you, ever so humbly.

It’s interesting to note which posts were the top attention grabbers (maybe they had sequins or glitter or aluminum foil on them to snatch your focus…who knows?).  Perhaps you saw some of those posts yourself, and perhaps they passed you by.  At any rate, have a look at “what you did,” and know that I’m appreciative of each and every one of you.

In the meantime, while you’re feasting on this little appetizer of sorts, I will be readying my final post centered around RACs and my holiday challenge, which ended on New Year’s Day.  Fear not, though!  Miracle on 32nd Street will still remain open for business!  The RAC Challenge, however, will take a hiatus until next November, when it shall return for it’s second run.

Enjoy the analysis work done by the folks at Word Press, and I’ll get moving on my own analysis of the past two months and my RAC Challenge.  Thank you all for a wonderful (albeit brief) 2010!  I am all a-twitter with what’s to come in the New Year!

Just the Facts…

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

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A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 3,500 times in 2010. That’s about 8 full 747s.

In 2010, there were 54 new posts, not bad for the first year! There were 624 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 40mb. That’s about 2 pictures per day.

The busiest day of the year was December 14th with 190 views. The most popular post that day was The 12 Movies of Christmas.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were WordPress Dashboard, wordpress.com, My Comments, stumbleupon.com, and naziaiftikhar.wordpress.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for miracle on 32nd street, miracleon32ndstreet.wordpress.com, uncle lewis christmas vacation, aunt bethany, and christmas vacation uncle lewis.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

The 12 Movies of Christmas December 2010
21 comments and 1 Like on WordPress.com,

2

Two Hours November 2010
28 comments and 6 Likes on WordPress.com

3

About this blog… November 2010
7 comments

4

Random Acts of Christmas November 2010
13 comments

5

And there’s that line… December 2010
24 comments and 5 Likes on WordPress.com

8 Things I Did on New Year’s Weekend

1.) Baked white chocolate cranberry/cherry cookies with the help of my new Kitchen Aid Mixer

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After a lively debate via comments and suggestions to moi, I have declared a name for my lovely new, knight-in-shining-armor Kitchen Aid mixer…and that name is Lancelot.

Bob came up for such a name, and expertly defended his idea:

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“I’m going to go with the obvious and say that you should name your fabulous mixer…Drum Roll Please….Lancelot! Lance rhymes with dance and celot looks like it rhymes with zealot. If I had a mixer that is what I would be. A dancing zealot. Whirling and twirling and dancing and singing and baking cookies galore. My kitchen would be a Broadway musical.”

Of course, every knight needs a full title.  Fellow blogger Pegoleg also suggested a moniker of “Sir Mix-A-Lot”, so, there you have it, ladies and gentlemen:  please welcome Sir Lancelot Mix-A-Lot to the family.

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2.) Travelled to Pottery Barn (no, an ACTUAL pottery barn…full of pots)

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My highlight of New Year’s Eve Day was a trip out to a local potter’s warehouse, which comprised 3 floors of pots, pots, and more pots.  Most of his wares ranged somewhere between $100 and $400, so I settled on a nice, single flower vase for about $20.  And a $7 magnet.  I’m a big spender.

3.) Sang and played oboe in a New Year’s Eve Broadway Gala

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At our local playhouse, there is a traditional New Year’s Eve Gala held every year.  For the 2010-2011 crossover event, they presented a concert full of Broadway music, presenting over 100 performers who were all volunteer.  The event featured a full orchestra and a 70-member chorus, as well as several individual soloists.

I was running around like a chicken with my head cut off between the hours of 6-10 PM.  I had served as vocal director for this event, guiding the chorus with their material, and also subsequently became a member of their ranks come showtime.  I also played my oboe in the orchestra (correction, I squawked on my oboe in the orchestra), and I was lucky enough to have a vocal solo as well.

If anyone is familiar with musical theatre, a few of the pieces presented in the show included West Side Story Highlights, Phantom of the Opera Medley, “Agony” from Into the Woods, “I Know Where I’ve Been” from Hairspray, and my song, “Astonishing”, from Little Women.

Now, for #3…