People are like stained glass windows: They sparkle & shine when the sun’s out, but when the darkness sets in their true beauty is revealed only if there’s light within.Elizabeth Kübler Rossphoto by Van'14 Ryman Auditorium, Nashville TN
ALL ROADS LEAD TO SOMEWHERE…and that’s where I’ve been for the past month. After 28 days on the road; after crossing 11 states and 15 major rivers…a familiar road led me back home!
After nearly 3,600 miles, I can truly say each turn and each straightaway brought unexpected views and amazing vistas. Some were paths; some were dirt roads; some historic drives; some interstate highways; and some should not have even been where they were!
I believe even more now than before that there’s only one reason I venture down the pathways of life…and that is to find New Journeys on Old Roads.
Welcome back! I’ll begin posting stories, photos, trip routes and ramblings over the next few weeks. Follow along…let’s travel across this great country of ours. See part of America through my eyes!
Over the next 30 days I’ll be posting pictures of America at her best…from the Arbuckle Mountains to the Ozarks; the Smokies to the Appalachians…crossing rivers, skirting lakes…walking Beale Street and Main Street…crossing 11 state lines and driving some of the remaining original segments of the Mother Road (Route 66).
If it’s been a while since you’ve taken a ROAD TRIP through some of the country’s historical landmarks, roads and byways, maybe you’ll remember some of your past travels or get the map out and plan your next one.
Because it’s springtime, roadsides and highways should be teeming with wildflowers. We will stop to capture as many as we can.
Some of the best places are off the main road.
It’s the moments you take the time to explore an old road, a quaint bridge, a field of flowers, or Small Town, USA that will fill your heart with joy and your photo albums with memories.
…and doing it all with your best friend & sister…priceless!
Hold on! Here We Go!
Click to hear “I’ve Been Everywhere” by Johnny Cash
Have you been there?Leave me a comment and let me know how you’re enjoying the drive. Let’s share America with everyone.
Fields, roadsides & ranch lands are in full bloom.
Texas wildflowers have arrived!Bluebonnets and Brown Eyed Susan Indian Paintbrush and Indian Blanket Evening Primrose – from white to lavender to pink
Bitterweed and cactus blooms The scenes look like a Monet painting.
Wildflowers always surprise me when they shoot forth randomly among grass, rock and hard dirt. They are a bit like your life being interrupted with troubles. Neither worries nor wildflowers seem to care when or where they appear. They are just there!
Does a problem, concern, or fear seem to appear out of nowhere? It’s like that with wildflowers, too. A week ago there were no blossoms. It even seemed maybe they wouldn’t come this year–like something or someone had intervened and there would be no wildflowers. But they’re here!
Do you think you could learn to see a purpose and beauty in the thing that appears uninvited in your life? Like some folks, I tend to want to spend some time with my worries. I want to bemoan them, even show them off to others.
There’s another similarity between your worries and wildflowers. They are right in front of you. If you think you can just hurry down the highway and ignore them…think again! The same is true with your worries. You can’t ignore them or outrun them. There’s a formula for dealing with both–your worries and wildflowers. You must:
Stop and face them.
Spend time with them.
We know Bluebonnets don’t have to face the fear of spring storms, the pain of hail, the pounding rain or the long-suffering drought alone–because they are joined by their friends: Indian Blankets, Paint Brush, Evening Primrose, Bitterweed and Brown-eyed Susan. Like the Texas Bluebonnet, we are not alone.
Just as hard as it was for the wildflower to work its way up through rock and limestone, your worries will push through to your thoughts. Wouldn’t it be refreshing if your next worries looked a little more like the wildflower that comes but then goes.
There are rules about each–worries and wildflowers. They are there to remind you that pleasant or unpleasant surprises often catch us unaware. Here’s another rule about wildflowers and worries.
Don’t pick them.
They are not yours.
Leave them there.
…And when you turn away from the wildflowers…or the worries…
when you need to get back to your journey…
you’ll leave less burdened…more joyous…
and ready for your next experience.
JOY SPRINGS FORTH
For happiness one needs security, but joy can spring like a flower even from the cliffs of despair.Anne Morrow Lindbergh
What does it take to stand out in the crowd?
conviction of purpose
commitment to values
courage to own every decision
Sometimes it takes just one act of courage; sometimes it takes many occasions strung together through a lifetime.
Turn your uniqueness into the loudest voice among the crowd. Make the right choice for you. Stand strong through it all.
You’ll never regret an action based on your conviction.
But you might regret remaining silent.
Well, finally! Spring is here!
Some may not be sure of that fact if they’re looking out their window today. But I’m sure it’s spring…the calendar says so.
I wonder…as ancients were following moon cycles and earth’s rotations and printing calendars–if they thought there should be some dramatic drum roll to herald in each season of the year. I think of all of the seasons, spring should come with a shout if only to replace that dormant winter that is slowly—some say too slowly this year—leaving the dead and dying leaves and debris in your back yard. Have you heard those small cries from your shed? It’s your rake, broom and hoe just yearning to come out and play.
We think of winter as the time when the earth recedes under and into itself to commensurate and ponder the questions of its existence. We tend to use that time in the same manner so it’s time for us to wake up our body and mind. Winter may even say that it rests so well while blanketed and snuggled beneath winter’s cover that it can stay as long as it wants. Who can make winter leave that hibernating slumber?
SPRING CAN! That’s who!
Spring can break forth, finding its way up through frozen tundra and dead grasses and piled leaves. Spring has the added expressions of the flowers’ smiles, the birds’ songs and the caressing breezes necessary to push away a sleeping winter. It seems as if it doesn’t take much trouble on our part to welcome spring and play our way through it .
You remember how hard you prepared for winter? You checked your house for possible pipe leaks/bursts and insulation/heating problems. You “weatherized” your car. You prepared early for the livestock, animals, and even your own little kitties and doggies. You got the snow blower repaired, purchased a new shovel and started thinking what you would do on those extra days that may come your way as “snow days” if you couldn’t get out of the driveway.
Such hard work…and yet like a whisper and a refreshing clear, deep breath, spring is here and you didn’t have to do anything. Well, there was the clearing out of the wardrobe–the coats, hats, gloves & snowshoes. And there was the 3 days you spent tilling up the yard so you could plant those lovely blooming plants.
But for the most part, you get to just sit back and watch spring arrive and watch your soul and body regenerate and rekindle.
Now a time of serenity has come to replace our weary thoughts and plans. Come on over and let’s join in and welcome spring with as much excitement as it deserves and bid our final farewell to this long, hard record-breaking winter.
[Enjoy the video below as you think about spring. “Song of Spring” by Mendelssohn]
Oh, I surely hope you aren’t suffering from the allergens arriving daily. I truly wish the spring storms bypass you this year. But most of all I beg you to make the most of this arrival of renewal.
Before long, we’ll be making ugly faces at that thermometer.
How long do you think it will take for you to utter the words?
Boy, I wish it would cool off soon.