A Big Hole In The Ground

That is what my daughter so fondly calls the Grand Canyon. She might be a bit jaded, because she had to drive there several times a week for a year, while working at the Canyon medical clinic. Speaking of which, guess what is the most common reason people go to the medical clinic? Let me help you out by giving you a multiple choice option:

  1. Dehydration
  2.  Abrasions from trail hiking
  3.  The common cold
  4.  Injuries from a squirrel attack.

If you guessed #4 you are correct!! There is a reason there are signs posted everywhere that say ” Please don’t feed the squirrels” .  Too many visitors ignored this sign and have fed these creatures for years. Now these little rascals have developed an insatiable appetite for human food and will literally attack you if you dare to try to feed them something healthy. Okay, that is probably not true. But it is true that they bite and it is true that it is the number one cause of  injury seen at the Grand Canyon clinic.

Now on to the point. If you have not seen this incredible “hole in the ground” you must put it on your destination wish list. If you have visited before you need to come again and do a tour with Canyon Ministries. Every season has its own astounding beauty. There is no right or wrong time to visit the Grand Canyon! However there is a right and a wrong time to hike the Grand Canyon, in my humble opinion! I will save that for another post.

Several weeks ago my daughter, my Mom, and I took a Sunset Tour with Canyon Ministries. Our tour guide , Nate Loper, ( Follow Nate on Twitter ) was simply amazing. He does tours 5-6 days a week and says, “I never get bored” and “There is always something new to see”. His enthusiasm is contagious and his knowledge of the park was impressive.  He shared the latest scientific theory on how the Grand Canyon was formed, among other very fascinating facts. He also knew all the best places and times to take photographs in the park.  I can’t wait to another tour with him again. Maybe a 9 day river tour!

Check out this company and book something soon!  You will be so glad you did!

Canyon Ministries

Here is a glimpse of the few sites we saw  during the tour:



I will leave you with this as the last image in your head as you plan your trip to the Grand Canyon!_DSC0179

Happy Easter to All!

On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; He has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified, and on the third day be raised again.’ ” Then they remembered His words.

Luke 24:1-8

Catching My Breath

I have to admit, I really enjoyed reading Karen’s recent post, Snow Hiking. You know, the one about where’s she’s been and what she’s been up to these past few months? And how about her artwork? Seriously, who knew she had such talent?! Definitely not me, but I’ve totally enjoyed seeing her creations.

Just reading her post made me start thinking about my own absence from our blog and why I’ve stepped down for so long. Perhaps it’s just personal therapy, but I feel compelled to write my own account of ‘Where’s Waldo” (or is it Walda?). Maybe some will identify with me and reply with their own experiences. And maybe not. But really, the next few paragraphs are mostly for me, so sit back and enjoy the ride.

First and foremost, I haven’t been doing nothing. I’ve at least been hiking multiple times, cross-country skiing once, and an awesome day of down-hill skiing. And, with the exception of down-hill skiing, I even have a collage of pictures to prove it.

And when the snow dumped and dumped for days, with no relief in sight… we threw down our shovels, kicked it into 4WD, and headed for the middle of nowhere!

Cuz nothing beats FIRST TRACKS!


And I’ve been traveling.

A Lot.

Florida, Wisconsin, Washington, Nevada, and more visits to Phoenix than I care to count. 


Then there’s that lengthy period of soul-searching, in which I found myself immersed again and again. Not because I’m trying to find myself, mind you. That would be selfseeking, not soul-searching, right? And most of the time I’d be better off to lose myself, as the overwhelming presence of me is usually what is wrong with my life. But don’t worry, I won’t get heavy on you. Suffice it to say, I’ve been reassessing my direction in life. A course-correction, you might call it. A much-needed, and on-going one, at that.

All things considered, it’s been an awesome eight months. And I’m glad to be back!

Happy Trails!

No Winter Blues

Last year, on this exact day, I was enjoying fresh-baked mango bread in Hawaii.

Today I’m watching a winter wonderland appear before my eyes.

The temptation was to envy the past. But alas, today is called the present for a reason. It’s a day to enjoy and find the best in it. I just needed to unwrap it. So, I filled a thermos with hot coffee, put on my bathing suit, grabbed a towel and headed to a local gym. Not for a routine workout, merely for enjoyment.

Not surprisingly the outdoor hot tub was empty, as the snow was gently falling from the sky and cascading off tree branches with each gentle breeze. ‘Breeze’ sounds like a tropical term, but it wasn’t a gust and the sun was slightly shining, so I decided the term breeze was to be deemed proper.

My sunglasses and flip-flops seemed slightly out-of-place as I approached the welcoming steam of the hot tub. But I must confess, even with an outdoor temp of 30 degrees, I was not cold. Maybe my attire had a placebo effect on me.

As I sat in the hot tub sipping my coffee I found myself smiling. Winter is beautiful. Each season reveals its own secrets and invites exploration. I love that exploration doesn’t have to be typical, expected, or even deemed normal.

Proof : When I sent some snow selfies to friends and family the responses were filled with phrases like “Are you crazy” and “Where are you?”. No, I wasn’t in ski gear on the slopes, nor sporting sensible cold weather garb. I was in my swim suit sitting outside in the snow, with no other reason than to simply explore winter in my own way.

I embraced the gift of today and in return was given the beauty of this season; the relaxation from the warmth of the water, coffee, and gratitude for being here.




Everyone awaits their moment to shine

that moment in which one’s self  is highlighted and recognized

the moment in which one’s true genius is finally revealed

But that kind of shine is quickly dimmed by the next person’s moment

That kind of moment is only temporary, fleeting in the mirage of time


But what if one decided to live a life that truly shined?

Not just a singular moment, but an entire life?

I imagine that life would exude joy from the inside out, not dependent on life’s ever-changing circumstances, but firmly in place at all times.

A life that is focused on others, not-self.

A life that strives to share the beauty of all that surrounds us. A life that hopes and fills each moment with beautiful, meaningful, purposeful, and godly actions.

Let the eyes of our hearts be enlightened.

Does not light chase out the darkness?

I want to live a life that shines, not momentarily, but with all the time I am granted to live this one life I am given.

The promises of God, the source of light, are far better than any fleeting “shining moment” this life has to offer.

James M. Barrie said, “Those who bring Sunshine into the lives of others, cannot keep it from themselves”.

So here’s to a bright tomorrow!

Shine on!


via Daily Prompt: Shine