Monday, July 21, 2014

Day 26, Small Pause, " Eyes Shut"

Balance, 4x4in. Oil on linen/panel. Sold

Today's Small Pause...

After much gardening and yard work this past weekend, I decided to take a slower pace today.  Have you ever noticed how the sounds of your surroundings can lull you into a quiet relaxed state? Happily, I experienced this today while I read on my back doorstep. Nature sounds became my meditation today, causing me to gently shut my eyes and become attune to the moment. 

My fountain gurgled like a babbling brook beside me. While gentle breezes rustled the surrounding foliage and trees. I could hear them swaying gently, reminding me of surf on a beach. Our regular little visitors scurried and scampered across my deck indulging in their daily feast. Hummingbirds whizzed above my head.  Their sounds seemed amplified as I listened with eyes shut. 

I am always grateful for moments like these. They slow down one's mind, negate "to do lists" and allow the enjoyment of a present moment. 

I hope you get to experience nature or another quiet space today. Shut your eyes and become attune to your surroundings. Live in a present moment; if only for a short pause.


P.S. Please feel free to leave a comment or add your own Small Pause in the comment section below!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Day 25, Small Pause, "Discoveries"

Blue Skies Return, 10x8in. Oil on linen/panel. Painted En Plein Air in Grant's Lake, N.S.

Today's Small Pause...

This morning while on my daily walk, I discovered a new place with hidden treasures. Being an artist I am always scouting out new view points and inspiration. While admiring all the beautiful wild roses below the roadway, I realized a ready made trail below the ditch would make a great place to paint future work. 

Off I traipsed along the pathway, tilting my head to view different angles and looking beyond the ditch to interesting views. The same views I have seen many times, but this time with a new perspective. Funny how the ordinary can become once again interesting when viewed with fresh eyes from a new angle.

A view from the ditch

 A trail in the ditch

Being in the ditch felt fun and secretive. It brought back  childhood memories when we used our imaginations to play. We sought out nature and made our own fun in secret spaces that we thought only we were privy to. We giggled and laughed at the delight of seeing others, believing that we were invisible in our etched out nature spaces. 

Imagination sparks the mind and connects to one's true spirit. Playfulness and curiosity are the entry point to imagination.  Today's youth often miss out on imaginative play,when their world becomes consumed by technology. I think both adults and children need to maintain a playful spirit to allow joy's entry. 


P.S. Please feel free to leave a comment or add your own Small Pause in the comment section below!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Day 24, Small Pause, "Feels Like Home"

Return to the Park, 16x20in. Oil on canvas, Powell's Pt. Park, Nova Scotia.

“I think what you notice most when you haven’t been home in a while is how much the trees have grown around your memories.” 

Today's Small Pause...

It was a joy to finally return to the park to paint on location again. I felt like I had arrived home once more. The sights, smells and memories of being totally immersed in the vitality of the park embraced me. There was a familiarity, like the presence of home, that made me feel joyful and relaxed. 

Painting En Plein Air in Powell's Pt. Park, Nova Scotia.

I believe everyone needs a space where they feel "at home". A place where they can just be at one with themselves. A quiet refuge where the noise stops and truths can be heard. This is where we catch our breath. It is where the noise of the world subsides and rejuvenation takes place.


P.S. I would love to hear where you find the feeling of "Home". Feel free to share your small pause or thoughts in the comment section below!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Day 23, Small Pause, "Smell the Roses"

A Harmonic Existence, 6x6in. Oil on canvas, Painted En Plein Air in Powell's Pt. Park, Nova Scotia.
Available Here.

Today's Small Pause...

Today I literally had a chance to "smell the roses".  After a marathon week of gardening, it was wonderful to take a break and enjoy nature. This is one of my favorite times of year when wild rose bushes present their glory! 

On my walk this morning I was greeted by their sweet scent and refreshing hue. They danced within strong gusts of wind; like a sea of pink bobbling on waves of breezes. Oh the joy! My heart always sings when they arrive. 

Their presence is joyful and I can almost hear them laughing! I love their light hearted nature. Like children, they dance about without care.  As adults we could take a lesson from nature's free spirit by taking short moments of time in our day to "smell the roses"! 


P.S. Please feel free to leave a comment or add your own Small Pause in the comment section below!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Day 22, Small Pause, "The Sea and Me" Guest Blogger

I am delighted to share Today's Small Pause written by Antony Millen. Antony is Pictou County-born who lives and writes in New Zealand.

"Lines Spoken in Meditation at Foxton Beach"

I’d been staying in Palmerston North, an inland city in the North Island of New Zealand, three hours away from my home in Taumarunui. After finishing some business in the city one morning, I spontaneously turned left instead of right and continued until I’d reach the seaside settlement of Foxton Beach.

It was a blustery, grey winter morning here in the southern hemisphere and the beach was empty apart from me and the seagulls.

As I stood at the precipice where coast meets water, I looked out at the expansive view of surf and sky and listened to the winds and the gulls.

All of it seemed to warrant my attention – the gulls were obviously used to human contact and expected some sort of sustenance. The ocean waved at me, drawing my gaze higher and further – to a disquieting vista, one that overwhelmed in its enormity, especially in the isolation of my moment.

The seagulls offered me a safe option – smaller activity, shapely and contained, a particular curiosity and entertaining.

The sea offered me more and, I thought, too much more – enormous engagement, vast and unwieldy, a universal wildness and intimidating.

I was reminded of the words of the Baptist: “He must increase, but I must decrease” and sensed annihilation, a swallowing of a whale. But, in that, I also sensed that if I looked to the sea, if I lingered and tarried, I might discover more in the depths – something that at first looks like death but leads to life, an awareness of my universe, my world, my humanity and all that is daunting and inspiring and beautiful in them.


Thanks so much for sharing Antony!

Antony Millen is originally from Pictou County, Nova Scotia and a fellow member of the Lamey family. He is a gifted writer who now lives and writes in New Zealand and is the author of the novels, "Redeeming Brother Murrihy" and "Te Kauhanga". You can find out more about his books and read Antony's blog at:

You can also follow Antony on Facebook or Twitter.

 Please feel free to comment or add your own "Small Pause" in the comment section below! 

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Day 21, Small Pause, "The Small Things"

Today's Small Pause...

32nd Anniversary, July 3rd, 2014

As my husband and I celebrate our 32nd Wedding Anniversary today, I reflect on the truth that small gestures help build relationships. A knowing smile, a touch, support by just being present; those are the building blocks that culminate over time. It is not the big moments, for they are infrequent. It is the small everyday happenings that weave together to build lasting ties. Whether in a partnership, friendship etc. the small things are what count over time. They are subtle and grow unknowingly, until one day you realize you have supported each other during your long journey together. 

On this special day my peonies decided to bloom. They bobbled within gusts of wind, just like our journey through life. I smiled, feeling grateful for love, beauty and for being awake to the "small things"!


P.S. I would love to hear your thoughts or small pause today! Please feel free to share in the comment section below. 

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