Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Z is for ?

(Thanks to Morguefile.com for the zebra pic. I have never seen a zebra in real life so have no photos. 
And I sure don't have a funny photo like this one!)
The A to Z challenge is over for this year
If you’re still reading, I give you a cheer,
We’re doing the last letter Zed today
You might say Zee, but I’m Canadian, eh?
Hard to think of Z words, my brain is getting sore
What about zany and zombie? There must be more,
Zamboni, and zenith. Zipper and zit
Zulu, zebra. Okay, I quit!
My energy is zapped and I’ve lost my zing
I’m out of the Zone and can’t do a thing!
It’s hard finding Z words to fit and rhyme
I need a ZZZZ now. See you next time! 

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Y is for Yesterday

Moments slip away as seconds rush past
I want to find a way to make them last,
I make my Yesterday books to help keep track
I look at my books and the memories rush back,
By taking photos and putting them in a book
I can recapture Yesterday every time I look.

©Cathy Graham April 29, 2013

Saturday, April 27, 2013

X is for ?

Xtra Xtra read all about it,
X is hard, no doubt about it,
It sure is hard to find X words
Doing X is for the birds,
There’s Xray, and Xylophone, yes, that’s true
Xerox, X box and X-rated, too,
Signing off with an X or two (SMACK!)
X is way too hard to do!

Love Cathy XXXXX

Friday, April 26, 2013

W is for Writer

We writers are strange, there’s no denying
We are wacky and weird without even trying,
We live in a world of our own creation
Dreaming up stories from our imagination,
We’re not in it for the money or for the fame
Though a little would be nice, just the same,
Writer’s block is a deadly curse
Writing crap is even worse,
Being a writer can be lonely and tough
We often feel we’re not good enough,
But when we write some shining prose
Our writing shimmers, sparkles and glows,
It’s what being a writer is all about
And helps sustain us through the drought.

© by Cathy Graham, April 26, 2013

Thursday, April 25, 2013

V is for Voice

Do you use your voice to complain and moan?
Do you witter and whine in a pitiful tone?
How you use your voice says a lot about you
And your choice of words definitely matters, too,
What if you decided to praise and rejoice?
Wouldn’t that be a much better choice?
Think about that when you use your voice.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

U is for Unique

Did you ever wonder why you’re here?
Or why were you born in a certain year?
Why are you living in this time and place?
Why do you have that body and face?
You are unique and one of a kind
Just the thought can boggle the mind,
The population grows as we speak
But you alone are totally unique!
So show the world what you can do
There’ll never be another you!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

T is for Today

(Disclaimer: This photo of these lovely roses is not mine. 
Thanks to bluekdesign at morguefile.com for the use of their photo.)

Just for a while, why not stop your hurrying?
Are you in the moment or always worrying?
Rush, rush, rush to get it all done
Like a race that has to be won,
Why not take time to smell the roses today?
Take a moment to stop and play,
Right now matters more than past
Today is all we have and it’s going fast,
Step right up and get a brand new day
But you must act now before it slips away. 

Monday, April 22, 2013

S is for Singing

Singing is much better than any pill
I’m in a place where time stands still,
All my worries fade away
Singing is a time to play,
Singing brings out such emotion
It soothes me like a magic lotion,
Singing connects me to my soul
Pushing me to a higher goal,
I feel such joy in every song
Singing is where I belong.

I have been in the Village Voices Women's Choir for almost 9 years now. www.freewebs.com/villagevoices

It has been such an enriching experience being able to share with a group of supportive women, all united to create beautiful music. We work hard but we have fun, too. Our passionate and incredible director, Karen pushes us further than we think we can go and we're always amazed to realize we actually did it. Our accompanist Tina is so talented and makes us sound so good. I feel so fortunate to be a part of such a wonderful group.

And I love being able to share our music with audiences, whether in seniors' residences, nursing homes, or at our concerts. Our main Spring concert is coming up on April 28th so we're getting ready for that and practicing hard.

As our motto says,   "Singing is cheaper than therapy."

Here is a Smilebox video I created of us singing "All the Pretty Little Horses" at our most recent concert at Oak Park Residence in Ottawa this past Saturday. I used photos I took on a bike trip last spring of a nearby farm and all its "Pretty Little Horses."

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Saturday, April 20, 2013

R is for Resilience

Life is a tough journey that is never the same
Constantly changing like some kind of game,
We are not perfect and we make mistakes
We hurt so deeply that our heart breaks,
We try new things and fall flat on our face
Resilience helps us forget our disgrace,
Growing and learning, we persevere
Resilience guides us through the fear,
Wiser and stronger, we start anew
Resilience helps us see it through.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Q is for Queen Elizabeth II

During the 1960's when I was in grade school, I remember there always being a framed photograph of Queen Elizabeth II in every Canadian classroom.

Here is a poem I've written based on those recollections from a child's perspective.

I still like Queen Elizabeth today and admire her strength and tenacity. 
And yes, it's obvious, she still is the boss! Too bad, Charles!

Did you know Queen Elizabeth went to school with me?
I’m not kidding as you can plainly see,
Dressed in her robe, a crown upon her head
She’d watch and listen to whatever I said,
With splendid jewels and a fancy gown
She was the best dressed queen in town,
Every morning I’d sing God Save the Queen
I did this each day until I was a teen,
I was nervous of the queen always watching me
So I’d try my hardest to be good as could be,
I tried my best not to make her cross
It was obvious that she was the boss.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

P is for Photograph

Pasted on smiles and stiff formal poses
Scarecrow hair and runny noses,
Knee high socks and sagging skirts
Baggy pants and wrinkly shirts,
A sunny beach or a snowy hill
Spring lilacs on the window sill,
A contented cat or a hyper dog
Fungii growing on a fallen log,
Sepia, colour, black and white
A magical display of contrast and light,
Photos are a good way to express my art
Freezing the moment that is close to my heart.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

O is for Ocean

The Atlantic Ocean, so majestic and vast
I gaze at the waves and imagine times past,
Point Michaud on the Cape Breton coast
Is one of the places I love the most,
The waves so huge, all capped with white
Crashing and splashing with all their might,
Being here makes my life seem small
I’m a blink of an eye in the scheme of it all,
The ocean keeps going on and on
And will continue long after I’m gone.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

N is for Numbers

Numbers never stay inside my brain
They wash away like morning rain,
Phone numbers, birthdays, addresses, too
What’s a number hating gal to do?
Stepping on the scale can be a fright
When I see the results of my binge last night,
Numbers, numbers, everywhere
They like to catch me unaware,
There’s no escape, nowhere to hide
I should know because I’ve tried,
Speed limits, grocery prices, bills galore
I’ve had it with numbers, my brain is sore!

Monday, April 15, 2013

M is for Moments

Moments are sun patterns through the trees
Moments are butterflies on the breeze,
Moments are music that touches the soul
Moments are friendships that make you feel whole,
Moments are snowflakes swirling above
Moments are heartbreak followed by love,
Moments are your children, small then grown
Moments are times when you’re all alone,
Moments are the minutes that become hours
Moments are the buds that grow into flowers,
Moments are fleeting and gone so fast
Try to enjoy them while they last.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

L is for Life

I must admit I did not use my own photo this time for the challenge. I had no lemons to photograph and I sure don't have any lovely lemon trees like this one outside my door. Just neverending snow! Sigh. It is spring, isn't it? You'd never know if you looked out my window. Good thing we Canadians love winter. HA!

So I borrowed a photo from morguefile.com, and used a photo from beglib. Thanks, beglib, I owe you one! http://morguefile.com/creative/beglib

I was lying in bed this morning when this poem came to me partly written. I felt like a scribe getting it all down and then all I needed to do was tweak it to make it smoother. I am grateful when that happens as many times it doesn't come that easily and I write a ton of garbage before I get something I like.

When life hands you lemons make lemonade
Sit and enjoy a glass in the shade,
When life hands you lollipops, take a good lick.
But don’t lick too much or you’re sure to get sick,
When life hands you losers, let them go
Get rid of them with the old heave ho,
When life hands you laughter, laugh hard and long
There is no sweeter sounding song,
When life hands you leisure make sure to partake
Relax in a chair by the side of the lake,
When life hands you loneliness reach out to others
We’re in this together like sisters and brothers,
When life hands you love, you must reciprocate
And then you will always be free of hate.

Friday, April 12, 2013

K is for Kaleidoscope

Here is a photo of Mrs. Cardinal that I took recently on our feeder in the front yard. 

I used the Kaleidoscope photo editing feature at this site http://www.tuxpi.com/ and Voila! Mrs. C and the feeder have been transformed into a lovely flower pattern. Why not give it a try? It's fun and there are other fun photo editing features to waste time on....er I mean to try out. Sorry the photo is a bit big for the blog post but you can't read the quote otherwise.

Sparkling shimmering patterns are sure to delight
All made by glass and mirrors reflecting the light,
Twirl those glass pieces and see what you can do
Create new patterns and make something new,
Look through your kaleidoscope and play the game
Shake it up and look inside, it’s never the same.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

J is for Journal

I love journals of every kind
Small or large, I really don’t mind,
Feminine flowers or masculine stripes
I love journals of many types,
I write "to do" lists or random thoughts
Story ideas or outlines of plots,
I write about love and I write about hate
I write down appointments so I won’t be late,
All these journals are cluttering up the place
I must stop buying them, I’m running out of space!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

I is for Idea

Recipe for Developing Good Ideas

It all starts with imagination, the main ingredient which you could call the starter or base of the recipe.

Let imagination simmer and incubate in isolation for a while. Don’t expect instant results. Good ideas take time.

Even being idealistic is okay at this stage. Avoid being irritable or indifferent. Those ingredients do not go well in this recipe and often sour the recipe before it’s even begun.

Sprinkle with some inspiration.

Boil for a while enjoying the invigorating scent as it invites you to invent.

Soon new ideas will bubble to the surface.

Take your favourite idea and carefully isolate, putting it aside so it won’t be forgotten.

Skim all the other ideas off the top and reserve for later.

You must be quick as these ideas quickly dissipate and are lost indefinitely.

Take your one idea and stir it well. Throw in some more inspiration and imagination

Repeat as necessary. Ask for insightful input as needed.

Lastly, use some initiative to see it through and persevere when the Inner Critic shows up hurling insults.

Let it rest for a while to allow the idea’s flavours to blend fully. Take another look and revise as needed.

Your interesting idea is now a fully imagined creation.   

Share and enjoy! 

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

H is for Health

Good health is more valuable than money and jewels
More precious than mansions with Olympic-sized pools,
Don’t worry so much that it makes you blue
Live each day mindfully and take care of you,
Good health means nurturing body and soul
Staying healthy should be a daily goal.

Monday, April 8, 2013

G is for Grateful or Grumpy?

Grateful or grumpy, it’s always your choice
Are you mad at the world or do you want to rejoice?
For it all comes down to your thoughts and attitude
Are you full of anger or full of gratitude?
You see the world in your own unique way
Your thoughts and attitude determine your day,
Grateful or grumpy, it’s up to you
What would you prefer to do?

Saturday, April 6, 2013

F is for Footloose and Fancy Free

Footloose and fancy free
That’s the way I like to be,
No anger or despair, no wallowing in sorrow
No regrets of yesterday, no worries for tomorrow,
I love to bathe in mud and jump in a puddle
Who cares if my humans get all in a muddle?
Rolling in rotten stuff is such a delight
And there’s nothing better than a good dog fight
Struttin my stuff, the cats quiver in fear
Watch out Gordon and Bigfoot, Loup is here!
I’m living in the moment, it’s my time in the sun
I’m a doggie whose mission is to always have fun!

Friday, April 5, 2013

E is for Enthusiasm

This is me last week after a visit from the Enthusiasm Fairy. Pretty scary, eh?

On those days when I’ve had enough
Finding some enthusiasm can sure be tough,
I’d rather just go back to bed
Pull my covers over my head,
But instead I search for the Enthusiasm Fairy
Have you seen her? Her name is Mary,
I know she was here just last week
She perked me up when things were bleak,
I sure hope she’ll come and visit soon
Or else I’m going to sleep til noon.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

D is for Dreams

I took this photo on a trip to Toronto to see "The Wizard of Oz" this past February. I thought this mural painted on the side of a building was whimsical, fun, and very fitting for the theme of dreams.

Here is a poem I wrote about going for your dreams. It's never too late! Keep dreaming!

You’re never too old to go for your dreams
It’s more attainable than it seems,
Just start slow and make a start
Find out what is closest to your heart,
Stop waiting for some day and do it now
You are the only one who knows how,
The main thing is get going and make a plan
Come on now, get moving, I know you can!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

C is for Chocolate

Today is the letter C in the A-Z challenge.

Since I was torn between writing about chocolate or cats, I couldn’t resist using this zany orange cat picture created by the clever and creative photographer John Lund.

I know I should have used my own photo but when I tried to get Rosie to hold a box of chocolates, she never even budged.

So I wrote the poem and that was my creative effort for today’s challenge.

Hmmm, Creative. There’s another great  C word. There are so many to choose from.

I thought about Coffee, too, another great C word. Hmmmm, Coffee Break time. Don’t mind if I do. See ya!

I think every day is a box of chocolates day
Who knows what we’ll get when we pick from the tray?
Some days are nutty and some days are sweet
Some days are so bitter they knock you off your feet,
Coconut, nougat or orange cream?
Vanilla swirl or strawberry dream?
Such delicious moments, so full of flavour
Those are the days we love to savour,
Take a big bite and give it a taste
Don’t let this chocolate day go to waste,
Each day can be a sweet chocolate day
When you look for your favourites on the tray!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

B is for BELIEVE

Mary Kay didn’t let anything stop her and built a huge cosmetics empire just because she believed she could and she didn’t let others say she couldn’t. She persevered through many obstacles, the biggest one being fear.

How often do we hold back with fear, thinking we can’t do something instead of taking a risk and trying? Our fear of failure and embarrassment can be so strong that we are paralyzed to take action.

We believe that inner voice that says we can’t do something or worse, we believe the negative naysayers out to sabotage our efforts.

What’s the worst that could happen? We might get turned down. We might look foolish for a while, feel uncomfortable and defeated. We do survive.

What if we changed our way of thinking and believed we could do it? In Steve Jobs biography, Jobs pushed his team to the limit, making them achieve things that were thought to be totally impossible. Jobs believed it was possible and he made the team believe it, too. 

BELIEVE and you can do it! 

Monday, April 1, 2013

A to Z blogging challenge - A is for Art

I've signed up for the A to Z blogging challenge. Nothing like a challenge and a deadline to get a person writing regularly. And I love to read all the creative blog posts of other people in the challenge. There's so much creativity out there that I can't help but be inspired.

For the challenge, I will create my own inspirational poster each day combining one of my own photos and a quote on a subject that begins with that day's letter.

And I will include a poem or piece of prose with it, depending on what I'm inspired to write that day.

To begin, I have chosen:

A is for Art.

Creating art is creating life, the process is the same

Splash some paint on your canvas and see it as a game,

Write those words upon that page, strut your stuff upon a stage

Play your instrument or sing a song

Don’t let them say you’re doing it wrong,

For art is life, and life is art

Full of love, straight from the heart.