Archive | August 2016

Shine. <3

And we’re all gonna shine a light together, all shine a light to light the way, brothers and sisters in every little part, let our love shine a light in every corner of our hearts.”

😀 

Saw this inspiring greeting card at CVS today(yesterday – I tried posting this before 12:00am but it wouldn’t work)! We all have a light to shine onto the world whenever we choose whether it’s through an act of kindness, creating something, arts n crafts, baking, photography, makeup & hair styling, giving birth, having a beautiful child, falling in love, doing the best we can, encouraging others, adopting a pet, volunteering to help others, saving an insect, feeding a squirrel…., or even just smiling brightly at a stranger…, anything that brings us alive, stirs something within, and makes the world just a little bit brighter is our way to shine our light into the uni-verse touching everyone & everything for the better. 😀 ❤
I hope you are having a beautiful day or night wherever in the world you are!

Love Shine a Light – mobile

Love Shine a Light – desktop
Much love & light,

Always,

Xoxo Kim ❤

Inspiration❤

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This isn’t my photo! Just an inspiring quote I recently discovered! I haven’t been doing much for the last few days except working & meditating (and eating pita bread & hummus! Yum! 😍 ) 

I haven’t even been reading much which is extremely unusual for me! I have been engaging in meditation more instead. My meditations have been deeper and longer and more persistent than they used to be, over an hour for each one. I notice a significant difference each day than when I don’t meditate much. When I don’t meditate for a while, even when I’m very calm and peaceful and not anxious or depressed, I’m not as mindful of my inner peace and it doesn’t feel as deep as when I meditate even just once in the last two days. The feeling of tranquility, inner peace, calm, serenity…, is almost palpable. For me, the effects of meditation last two days. I noticed this because when I meditate just once one day and not again, I still feel the effects two days later, that smoothness, that seemingly indestructible inner calm. Two days later! Imagine the effects of meditating every single day! 😀  I have much experience with meditation but never made it a constant habit. I meditate off and on, stopping for a while then starting up then stopping, then again…which is better than nothing! 😀

I am not someone who experiences much anxiety or sleep problems but after losing my close friend unexpectedly to a heart attack, a year and a half ago, I experience anxiety and a sense of panic (not full blown panic attacks though) in ways I never used to before and I find meditation so very helpful. But we don’t have to have a specific problem or condition for meditation to be helpful. Even if we’re generally, naturally very peaceful and joyful, meditation can still be fantastic.

So I have been on a kind of retreat, not like a trip somewhere but not doing as much as usual (other than working) like reading, social media….

In Buddhism, sometimes we are encouraged to go on a retreat in our minds, even if we have to work. We still go to work and do things we have to but lay off other things for a while, like Internet. It energizes and calms us. This wasn’t my intention now; it just sort of happened that way.

Also, I recently heard on the radio that eating any kind of beans each and every day can add eight years to our life! Hummus is one example the person provided. I love hummus! Lol My mom thinks it sounds like a dirty word. 😂😍

I’ll have to look it up to learn more about that! Very interesting!  Today is the fifth day of my twelve days in a row of work! It’s not so bad. It is a bit busy! ‘Tis the season for ice cream, milkshakes, banana splits….😍

Thank you to everyone who wrote me comments! I will respond soon! I appreciate every comment, like, share…..😍

Much love & light,

Kim ❤

 

 

 

Photography & inspiration❤

IMG_20160812_020920-01

“To me, photography is an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place…I’ve found it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.” ❤

 

This post I had planned for over a week now but never prepared or published it yet and today I saw on Facebook  that today is the 177th anniversary of photography! I’m not sure how true it is but what a perfect day to actually publish this here post! 😀

I am extremely trusting in general but also extremely skeptical in another way. Both of those aspects of my nature are not usually conscious decisions; I’m just that way. Whenever I see a source, statistic, something in the media….my brain automatically questions the accuracy or truth of it. I’m not a conspiracy theorist or totally paranoid but I’m often even skeptical when I see things in the news or anything. 

So this 177 years thing may or may not be accurate but anyway it’s the inspiration for me fixing up this post and hitting “publish.”

Screenshot_2016-08-20-02-38-15_kindlephoto-14904575

This (the very first one at the top)  is the first photo ever that I truly tried to edit using real photography “rules” or tools. Photography is my passion, reading about it, looking at people’s photos, professional or not, taking my own pics, I am so inspired! 

Sometimes my hobby taking and editing pictures I take brings life back into me when I’m severely depressed and inspires me to live. I am not a photographer and know very little about photography other than the beauty of it. One of my goals is to learn more about it on my own and even take classes one day just for fun! I mostly use my phone to take pics but I do have a Nikon camera I don’t really know much how to use. It takes beautiful photos though.

Here is that same pic but not edited:

 IMG_20160812_020920

The colors here are less vibrant because in above picture I increased the saturation. Decreasing saturation into the negative numbers will turn an image b&w. Also, in the above image(the one way above), I increased the structure and sharpening to bring out the detail better and I straightened the photo.

Here are some more of my photos that I edited:

My main source of inspiration for taking pictures is mundane objects like buildings, traffic lights and signs, everyday objects like lightbulbs, ceiling fans, towers outside, fire hydrants….anything…I love to capture the beauty of things often overlooked, ignored, taken for granted and sometimes edit them to make certain things stand out. Shadows and reflections for example, in person we often do not stop to appreciate or just see them but in photos, we often can’t miss them!

These seemingly trtrivial things make up much of our lives each day and I want to capture and share their stunning beauty and promote mindfulness of them each day.

Here is my page:

https://inspirationalgem.wordpress.com/small-things-forgotten/

There are basic composition rules for taking pics like the rule of thirds, leading lines, negative space… And basic editing tools like straightening, sharpening, structure, vignette or central focus, tonal, ambiance,  …that we can use to make our pictures more appealing. I like over editing some of pics. I think they look pretty

And don’t want my hobby restricted by rules. But I also want to learn the general rules (that photograpers agree have exceptions and are made to be broken once in a while) and the basic editing tools That most digital photos can use. I decided to make a goal to at least once a day, take a few minutes to read about photography and try to learn and apply some photography techniques to my pictures. The above pic is the first one I edited using Snapseed in an attempt to use real photo editing tools, not just how I usually do editing them just in random ways or on a whim or whatever I think looks good. That’s good too but I am so happy to learn and try something new!  This pic I edited using the basic tools on photo app Snapseed, a popular iPhone photo editing app. I don’t have an iphone, never have, and likely never will but I just love IPhone photography for some reason! Its my favorite! My android marshmallow phone can get Snapseed. I wanted it when I used a blackberry phone but its not compatible with BlackBerry.

IMG_20160812_022143-02

This pic here I also tried to edit using real photography techniques but instead of looking at the instructions I used my memory and forgot a couple steps. The first picture is very bright to convey the feel of a hot summer day and this one I made darker using the vignette tool, to bring more attention to the window with the reflection of the blue sky. If i understand correctly, vignette can be used to draw the viewers to a certain part of the photo. I hope to master this skill one day! I have much to learn! I think this pic can use an increase in saturation.

I wish my skills were already developed and my knowledge about photography vast but there’s also something so beautiful about having so much more to learn! So much fun and possibility! One day my knowledge of and skills in photography will be increased in both breadth & depth! 😀❤💜

And here are some of my intentionally very over-edited photos!

😀

So these are just a few of my pictures and goals! 

I hope you are having a beautiful day or night wherever you are! 😀❤

Much love & light, always,

Xoxo Kim

Goodness <3

(Not my photo)

So today I slept most of the day away. Lol I had a headache all day! Not just lazy! (Although I can be kind of lazy! )

😉

Not the worst of the ones I get but very painful. I have a little sinus thing going on and my chronic headache disorder acting up. But today is still a great day! It’s all about our attitude. There doesnt have to be any bad days no matter how much goes wrong.

Let’s look for the good in each day, no matter how mundane or simple. The fragrance of coffee or tea, soft blankets, raindrops on windows, pelting upon the rooftops, the sun rising and setting, watching a movie with friends or family, snuggling with furfriends,…. just being alive! 😀 ❤

There’s so much goodness each & every day! ❤

Here is some of the goodness I encountered today:

Waking up

Watching a movie with my mom

My kitty, Lacey gently hitting my face with her paw (it still hurt! Lol) 

Nap with my dogs

Rain

Traffic sloshing through the rain outside

Listening to Oldies songs

Busses going by in the rain tonight

Playing a scary game i just downloded on Kindle (I got killed by a horrifying ghost girl!)

Playing a Christmas game! (I lost a sled racing game to an elf!) I don’t usually play video games but i saw a couple interesting games and decided to try them!

Playing a vegas casino game ( i had no clue what i was doing and totally lost)

Bagels at wawa with berry cream cheese

Walking to get my mom a coffee

Reading sweet comments people wrote to me 

Watching a scary movie

Looking at inspiring phone wallpapers like the one above

A day off of work – I’m going to have work 12 days in a row, some of those days working ten hour shifts, starting Friday! It’s going to be busy!

Doritos! 😀

Soothing meditation

A headache, even a debilitating one, can’t make me have a bad day!

😀

Big Ass Headache – Justin Moore- mobile

Big Ass Headache – desktop
This link! Looks like it has my name in it! Lol

https://youtu.be/P_CbtNcGKIM”&nbsp;

And it’s a great Country song that makes me laugh! 

“I feel like I’ve been rode hard and hung up wet
Swallowed by a mule and crapped off a cliff
I drank enough whiskey to fill up a lake
Woke up this morning with a big ass headache

Y’all I ain’t kidding this son of a bitch hurts
Where the hell are my pants must be with my shirt
I still got my boots on but make no mistake
They can’t help me kick this big ass headache”

I hope you are having a beautiful day or night wherever in the world you are!
Much love & light,

Xoxo Kim 

Imagine <3

(Not my photo)

Imagine – mobile – John Lennon

Imagine – desktop
Imagine no possessions

I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people sharing all the world
You, you may say 
I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll join us
And the world will live as one”

Beautiful song & sentiment! Living as One. Always.

❤ Much & love & light,

Xoxo Kim

Peace, Love, & Harmony <3

This is my current phone background! It’s not my photo; it’s one I found on an inspirational wallpaper app. I have a few of those apps installed and they allow us to share the wallpapers with others through a share button and there’s even an option to send some of them right here to WordPress!

I think most of us are kind and loving anyway, in general but there’s always room to evolve right?! I think so!

😀

To me, the most important thing is to be kind & loving with sentient beings including ourself (yup, it’s a word! It’s used to refer to us in general as opposed to a specific group of people) but it’s also important to be patient with inanimate objects like the cash register at work. Lol Just earlier today I got pissed at it and cursed it. Not that it’s wrong to the object itself but it generates negative energy to allow ourself to get angry with something as dumb as an object not operating as it should. And if we allow it to happen too frequently it can become a habit. 

It’s not good to repress our unpleasant emotions and they are not wrong to experience or express. But we can practice lovingkindness so we have less angry occasions and more inner peace in general.

One way is when we feel angry, acknowledge it, know it’s ok, take a few breaths, mindfully, then let or attempt to let go of the negativity. We can even visualize all the tension, distress, negativity leaving the body with each exhale. It can become a very positive habit. Again, it’s not about repression of unpleasant emotions.

We can also cultivate a more peaceful attitude by giving thanks for whatever or whoever we are angry at. The cash register for example, it can be a big pain in the balls for sure but imagine what we would do without it! I don’t have to imagine! Years ago the thing broke! And my coworker and me were stuck having to use a calculator, pen & paper, and our own math skills (mine sucks!). It was hellish having a broken cash register on a hot busy day at an ice cream store!

So the cash register really does serve a great purpose. Why focus on the bad?

And if the person or thing or whatever just really seems to have nothing good to focus on, give thanks for this opportunity  to practice love & patience.Difficult situations and people are great teachers and reminders.

Also, I got pissed at this phone I’m using while trying to write this very post! Lol (I’m not in a pissy mood today, I promise!) Then I realized the irony and took my own suggestions to heart.

I took a few deep (as deep as I can, it’s hot and hard to breathe) breaths and decided to be thankful for my phone which is a blessing even with the problems it can bring.

Also, we can engage in a guided lovingkindness meditation session. There are so many on YouTube, some as short as fifteen minutes or less (like the one I will share below) and others over a half hour long. Not everyone wants to take the time for a full meditation practice and we don’t have to to practice lovingkindness.

We have so many opportunities to practice throughout each and every day. It can be as simple as wishing the best (even if just in our heads) for each person, insect, animal we look at. Even the ones we do not know or ones we dont have very positive opinions or affection for. 

We can practice love and patience in every single encounter or at least some for a start.

We don’t have to express it out loud necessarily if we dont want to and we dont even have to actually feel the lovingkindness always; it’s about intention until eventually we feel it frequently without trying.

“Fake it til you make it!”

I am naturally this way but still have space to evolve and find this practice so very beautiful and peaceful.  

LovingKindness meditation – mobile

LovingKindness meditation – desktop


Remember just like you, just like me, every living sentient being wants to avoid suffering and wants inner peace even if that being cannot express or even think it consciously.

Animals, insects, our friends and family, our annoying neighbors, our coworkers, troubled people, addicted people, homeless people, stray animals, people with mental illness, financially rich people, insects that seem repulsive or annoying …..all can experience pleasure and pain, suffering, love and loss, fear and peace…if we wont focus on the good in them then still let us remember again and again that we are all alike in the most fundamental or essential ways. 

I hope you are having a beautiful day or night wherever in the world you are!

Much love & light, always,

Xoxo Kim 

Live Now

“While there is time, let’s go out and feel everything, if you hold me, I will let you into my dream, for time is a river rolling into nowhere, we must live while we can and we’ll drink our cup of laughter.” ~Steve Winwood -The Finer Things

“Let today be mine, for I might not see tomorrow. May I take time to live before time takes me. The silver thread of life is too fragile to forfeit today for tomorrow. No one knows how much of his life is spent; but this he knows: each day there is a little less. 
As Longfellow said, ‘The young may die, but the old must.’ Thus the wisest program for living and dying is to make your plans as if you would trod the earth for a thousand years and so walk as if you would take the last step today.”

Isn’t this beautiful? It’s out of an old book called Today is Mine by Leroy Brownlow. It’s a book of words of wisdom for each day of the year. This is for July 2nd.

The book has a religious tinge to it and is probably intended mostly for those of Christian/Catholic faith. At the end of each page there is a biblical verse or something.

I’m not religious but find inspiration everywhere I am. As you can see above, this applies to everyone. We don’t have to be religious or a theist to live fully. 

Living to the fullest is different for each one of us. It doesn’t just mean wild things like skydiving, traveling the world, going on all kinds of adventures. Those are great things and some people’s idea of living truly or living to the fullest. But truly living for others may just be having a day or few hours just reading a fun book, spending a day or portion of the day with the kids doing a fun activity or going out for lunch, a staycation, just soaking in all the surrounding beauty in all its forms, even a long midday nap, especially for those who have general busy lives….

Whatever our idea of living truly, deeply, to the fullest, this author encourages us to do just that before it’s all over for us.

My idea of living fully and deeply is being mindful of the goodness in each moment or at least many moments we live whether it’s a sweet day on the beach, a walk through the woods, a climb up a mountain, a stressful, hectic day at work, a boring wait in traffic or a waiting room, a mundane day at home, a struggle with pain, illness, depression, a walk to a store…..wherever we are, whatever we’re doing…and if we see no goodness, no beauty, look harder, and if we still see none, think of  what it is teaching us, how we can become, wiser, stronger, and inspire others. Create beauty where there seems to  be none.

Cherish each sip of tea, coffee, water, energy drink or whatever it is. If it’s delicious, savor the taste, if it’s healthy or energizing let us give thanks for the nourishment,….

Cherish each sunrise and each sunset, each cool breeze that caresses our skin, the fragrances of the seasons, the sounds of traffic, the song of the birds and crickets, the softness of blankets at night, the vibrant and pastel colors in the wind, the flowers, the buildings, the people, all living beings. ❤

 Let’s take these words to heart. Allow them to inspire us to the deepest depths within, caress our essence. Let us live. ❤

Here are two quotes at the end of the page:

Live now, believe me, wait not till tomorrow; Gather the roses of life today.” ~Pierre de Ronsard

There is but a step between me and death.” ~I Samuel 20:3

The Finer Things – Steve Winwood – mobile 

The Finer Things – desktop

“The finer things keep shining through, the way my soul gets lost in you, the finer things I feel in me, The golden dance life could be.”

I hope you are having a beautiful day/night and I’m wishing you inner peace, love, happiness….
Much love & light to you, always!

😀

 Xoxo Kim ❤