Category Archives: Contemplation

Writing from the heart!

~Stay within the lines – or not!



With colored pencils,

and uncolored scenes,

an experience begins.

 Let the kid in you surface,

with a still mind,

escape to a magical place.

 Without intrusion or restriction,

your free to explore,

a creation becomes yours.


You might have heard about the new pastime  – Adult Coloring Books. I recently learned about this hobby from two friends. Thanks to them, my interest was piqued. I found myself looking at some coloring books and decided to give it a try. I am glad I did.

I remember, when I was young, sitting down at the kitchen table with a coloring book and the biggest box of Crayola crayons I could get my hands on. It was a favorite inside activity and one enjoyed alone. I haven’t colored since and to be honest, didn’t even give it a thought. Until now.

Sitting here thinking about this post, I did a search on Adult Coloring Books and you wouldn’t believe how many web-sites there are dedicated to this hobby.

Sites speaking about the health benefits, about whats the big deal, how long has it been popular, where did it originate (Europe), why are these books becoming best selling items in places such as Barnes and Noble, or why 8 of the 20 best selling books on Amazon are Adult Coloring Books, and the list going on.

Interesting isn’t it, in an environment where we can’t seem to escape the technology that surrounds us, this simple activity becomes so popular. And peaceful.

Here’s one story published 12/30/2015 explaining its appeal…

Appeal of Adult Coloring


The Coloring Book I chose; Birds go figure!

Adult Coloring Book
Adult Coloring Book
Set of Colored Pencils
Set of Colored Pencils
It began
It began
Mandarin Duck
Mandarin Duck – my first colored page

Since purchasing my first Adult Coloring Book last month, I have completed six pages.  I show these pages, so you can see the intricate designs that most of these books offer and maybe to pique your interest.  Its not how or what I remember coloring when I was a kid! Its more fun!

You’re free to choose real or magical.


One might say,
coloring is for kids,
I don’t think so,
says the kid in me.
Coloring is for kids,
I don’t think so,
my experience enlightens me,
try it for yourself and see.
So tell me – do you enjoy coloring?




~At the end of this road…

At the end of this road sits a picnic table. Over the last few years while visiting JDSP, it has been a destination at the end of the day. This picnic table is old, weathered and scarred.

On many occasions we have enjoyed sitting at this table absorbing the beauty of our surrounding. Other times we have shared pleasant conversation or sat in silence awed by the fact that we were, well, just sitting here.

The girls know, when we reach the picnic table to jump up on its top. They will sometimes lay down, themselves enjoying the peacefulness of the area. Other times they are on alert, looking for some small critter they hear, that we don’t, rustling around in the Palmettos.

Sheila, Skye, Howard and Kloud
Old, weathered and scarred, but still functional. Perhaps just like us.

This year I noticed an addition; a brand new picnic table. I don’t like it for some reason; it is a replacement? I have to wonder what will happen to “our” old, weather and scarred table where we have created fond memories of being together.

I hope this old, weathered and scarred picnic table continues to sit right where it is; this table is one of my favorite places to reflect at the end of the day, and to view amazing sunsets. The new picnic table belongs to others, not us. It simply wouldn’t be the same.

I took these photos on December 15, 2015, standing on top of “my” table.






 I hope you enjoy them!



~A Note From a Friend

This past week I received a card from a dear friend. I thought I would share with you the words.

For a friend…

A friend is someone we turn to when our spirits need a lift.

A friend is someone we treasure for our friendship is a gift.

A friend is someone who fills our lives with beauty, joy and grace.

And makes the whole world we live in a better and happier place.

~Jean Kyler McManus

Treasure your friends and let them know how much they mean to you. Thank you my dear friend for sending me such a beautiful card! Love always.

~thank you sir for your service~

not once, but twice,

joy fills my heart,

bringing tears to my eyes.


I pass a stranger and on his head,

a cap, which he wears with pride,

I read the words, Gulf War Veteran.


I catch his attention,

as his eyes glaze down upon my face,

I say:  “thank you sir for your service”.


His eyes sparkle,

he tips his cap he so proudly wears,

 and he tells me, thank you.


not once, but twice,

joy fills my heart,

bringing tears to my eyes.


A few steps more toward the door,

what are the odds,

I pass an elderly man sitting with another.


on his head, a cap,

which he wears with pride,

I read the words, WWII veteran.


I try to catch his attention,

as I glaze into his eyes, which are non-seeing,

I speak loudly, I know I need to.


“sir, are you a WWll veteran”,

his friend tells me, yes he is,

I kneel down and look into his face.


“I thank you sir for your service”,

He replies, as a big smile spreads across his face,

thank you young lady.


I look up,

into the eyes of his friend,

just as mine they were wet with tears.


not once, but twice,

it feels right, to express my thanks,

to those that protect my country.


And, to think they thank me! This experience happened to me yesterday.


~Homeward bound, and still enjoying the journey~


The rhythm of the coach tires rolling across the highway, through dry west Texas landscape, is a pleasing sound. The wheels on our faithful coach keep turing, bringing us closer to home and further away from family and our southern friends.  For now it is a pattern of life we have chosen and one we are extremely happy living. Leaving is the natural way of things; this is how it is suppose to be, but still sad.

As  I look out my side window at the stark beauty of the areas we pass, I can’t help thinking how fortunate we are to be able to travel. It is with happiness that we roll along talking about past experiences and planning new adventures.

Caught in Flight
Caught in Flight

We feel excitement when preparing to leave home, knowing we will see family and friends. We anticipate meeting new people along our route. We know we will feel delight in the discovery of different and beautiful places. We know fun times will be shared and fond memories created.  

We also know our 2013/2014 winter trip is almost over.  

At the end of October, 2013 we rolled out of Colorado, leaving home and friends behind. It is with excitement that early next week we will roll into our home town with friends to see, a stationary life to enjoy, projects to complete and of course new travels to plan. 

On Friday, as we rolled along, we passed a sign. The sign made us both shout with joy. What did the sign say: You are entering Mountain Time Zone! Yes, our beloved Mountain Time Zone. Our bodies are once again in rhythm with our minds!! {grins}. Thank goodness for that! I asked Howard if he thought it would work if we just kept our clocks set to Mountain Time. What do you think?

A Pretty Face
A Pretty Face

Recent Travels:

As planned we left Beaumont, Texas on a Sunday, knowing that we would have to drive through Houston. We don’t like driving through Houston and choosing to drive this route at mid-mourning on a Sunday works best for us. Straight through driving on I-10, no problem! Another reason from leaving on a Sunday  – it is the only way we can get reservations at Stephen F. Austin State Park. This park is located close to Houston and Katy and is a popular destination for local nature lovers, especially on the weekends. 

We had a wonderful four days there and moved on to Kerrville, Texas staying at the Buckhorn Lake Resort. While there we ate some locally made Catfish Gumbo (always wonderful) and had the coach washed and waxed, which is the main reason for stopping in Kerrville.

Leaving Kerrville, we traveled less than sixty miles to South Llano State Park in Junction, Texas. As I have stated before, this is one of my favorite state parks. We met a lot of birders from all across the US and Canada. It is amazing how many people travel to Texas during this time of year to bird.

We also met some very interesting amateur and professional photographers and some astronomers. I am looking for a new lens to go on my Canon 70D so I spoke with some of these photographers to get their opinion on which lens to purchase.

After four wonderful days, it was sad leaving South Llano, because I enjoy the birding so much. We drove to Balmorhea and spent one night at Balmorhea State Park and then headed to Brantley Lake State Park in Carlsbad, New Mexico. 

This is where we are through the Easter weekend, leaving tomorrow. We drove this route last year on our way home and enjoyed the area, so we decided to take this route again. A few flowers are blooming, but for the most part spring hasn’t fully arrived in this part of the west. We had hoped to walk around The Living Desert Wildlife Museum, but the weather is not cooperating, another time perhaps.


As I sit here, in my comfortable home on wheels, looking out across the prairie, I  hear rain hitting on the roof, I see dark grey storm clouds rolling across the sky, driven by spring winds and I feel content.

The Rambling Rose, our home on wheels, keeps us happy and safe!


Homeward bound, and still enjoying the journey!