simply smashing two/too

Still floating from a week of rest with + focus on The Family. Thank goodness I only have 2 days at work before the weekend. Wish you were there…

Swallow Falls…how many shots do I have? I don’t know…and I really don’t care. img_7484img_7387_edited-1

Over 30 years, we have watched this valley move from grass/marsh/creek to this. Ecological succession. Aren’t we too an eco-system? Of nature?


The Drane House, Accident, MD. Oldest home in Garrett County…built in 1797. Just imagine their life…talk about the frontier! Details here.


On the banks of Deep Creek Lake in Deep Creek Lake State Park. Chris, Kate and The Kiddles have left for home. We aren’t leaving until tomorrow. [Yeah, right.]

The Adventure continues…

simply smashing



Honoré gave me my first Smash journal about five years ago and I’ve been smashing keepsakes ever since. Now I use my own smaller journal and really enjoy this practice.


Our prompt in Collage This Journal was to use ephemera from family and friends. So I took photos of my smash journal pages, a few highlights and printed them on cardstock. To give them the effect I wanted I tore each photo instead of trimming with scissors. In the top left the Assistu logo and ‘crabby’ saying were cut from ball caps I no longer used but wanted to keep as keepsakes. Anything can be smashed!.


I smash ticket stubs, pieces of envelopes, cards and gifts, tags from clothes I love, even a cookie wrapper from the Doubletree in Maryland!


I find smashing reminds me of the details; the shimmering slices of life that are often forgotten in the bigger picture.

words of love…



Friends. Love. Gratitude.

Those three words form the basis, foundation for this blog that is shared, nurtured (tho’ sometimes winds up on the someday/maybe list) by the three of us.

Work opportunities introduced us  – we each live in separate corners of the States: Delaware, Florida, and Washington DC.

Words (with the assistance of modern technology) and Love keep us together.

Isn’t that what it’s all about?





We were blessed to come through the storm unscathed and my heart goes out to the families who lost loved ones; their homes—I can’t imagine. I send love. I send peace. I send healing. I pray your community and the Universe hold you close.

We are 80 miles from the east coast of Florida so Friday only delivered tropical storm like conditions near us. I really wasn’t anxious until we watched the media online. Nature can show us who is boss. To divert my angst I made a list of joyful activities and set about taking action.

Friday is Journal Club day and we had power so I joined in the fun of writing prompts to tarot cards The Ringed Circus and The Fool—both reminding me to lighten up and be playful; I created my One Little Word prompt for September; I listened to the audio book The Light Keepers by Abby Geni a haunting story set in the starkly beautiful Farallon Islands.; I colored while I listened; I started a novel I’ve been hoarding since June ‘until the right time’ by one of my favorite authors Beatriz Williams; I napped (yes I actually slept for a couple hours); and we watched a funny movie ‘Paul’ about a small rude green alien that made us belly laugh all the way through.

I considered the joy, pace, rest that make up my days and found I have become more balanced and expressing my gratitude grows that continuity from me to loved ones to the world. My joy page has covers of many of the books I’ve read this year—reading truly is one of my greatest self-care joys. And my rest and pace pages again reflect the ebb and flow of reading at the beach and coloring usually while I listen to an audio book—yup there’s a theme here.

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OLW: This Chapter of Life




Collage your Perfect View:

  • think it through on Tuesday;
  • gather materials on Wednesday;
  • skip Thursday all together;
  • work on initial layout on Friday;
  • finish my View on Saturday morning;

I am just knocked out by the energy attached to the writings of my dear friends on this project. MSQT explained well, of course, but the words were illustrations, Honore. The Four Sighs? Your words became my world, Laura. All your hard work is really paying off.

For me, this was a completely visual, non-language-connected creation. And, yeah, Laura, trees do that for me too.


It’s Thursday—Four Sighs


My commitment to myself today was to recommit to excellent self-care which has fallen by the wayside as the end of summer gives way to a bustling fall. I’ve joined Jaime Ridler’s Journal Club which meets on Fridays for an hour of connection, synchronicity, laughter, aha moments, writing, doodling, sharing, and feeling incredibly welcomed and accepted by a group of kindred souls.

I missed half of last week’s call as I had to leave early. The calls are recorded so we may revisit or participate later if we can’t make the live call. But the live call is my preference as it is so inspiring and energizing!  Today is my catch-up-and-take-time-for-myself day so my ideal view is of me watching Jaime on my laptop all snug in my creative nook.

We three Tri Vista bloggers are taking a page (artistically unnumbered) from Eleanor Shakespeare’s ‘Collage this Journal’ to share here on OTV. This week is ‘create your perfect view’. Well, I am indeed working on THAT by refitting a sailboat to cruise the Caribbean and having an endlessly perfect view but that’s a future blog post, lol.

We don’t have an inviting physical view from where we live—encroaching neighbors with a minuscule yard but it’s filled with soothing vistas inside. From where I type there is a gorgeous view of an autumn tree on my wall in vivid orange and reds; and glowing fairy like butterfly chrysalises hanging from the branches. This view makes me sigh with contentment. Trees do that for me.

On our permanently unfinished kitchen wall (sans cabinets) there is a huge poster of a hammock hanging from palm trees over a transparent ocean. I can visualize myself having just vacated this idyllic spot; leaving a throw and pillow behind while I fetch a sweating glass of orange liquid topped with a tiny colorful paper umbrella. Another sigh. The ocean does that for me.

In the background of my computer screen are my bookshelves—lovingly stocked with my favorite hard covers. Yes, I do know they will not all fit on the boat and I am working to embrace ebooks as easily as I have audio books. It’s a love hate relationship. We have several bookcases in our home bursting with tomes and photos and knickknacks which create an oasis of loving memories and a perfect view. Third sigh. Books do that for me.

My perfect view also brings to mind my inner view and how practicing being grateful this year has manifested dreams and unexpected gifts and delights. My inner view is currently focused on balancing work, play, creativity, and relationships and not tipping the scales too far in any one direction. Writing brings me back to myself, helps me refocus, grounds me, and offers me a jumping off place into a new adventure or sometimes a plateau to enjoy the view and savor the moment. Final deep sigh. Writing does that for me.

You? What’s your perfect view dear reader? What makes you sigh with contentment?