Sunday Stills: Song Lyric Photo Challenge–Summers of My Dreams

Spokane Mountain Views

Welcome to the first-ever Sunday Stills song lyric photo challenge! This type of challenge is not new to bloggers but I thought it would be fun to try it. This theme was a challenge for me because I love all types of music, but I wanted to choose songs that made sense in my own life.

The idea of this challenge is to match images related to your favorite song lyrics. If this is unclear, it might be best to think of your favorite song(s) and highlight some lyrics with your new or existing photos. Here is an example from Marsha and my example from 2017: My Favorite Things.

Also, to avoid copyright infringements of published lyrics, only post a few lines rather than the entire song. If you write poetry or your own songs, you can certainly use your work for this theme!

Summer Rain, All Summer Long

Today, to help inspire you with appropriate images, I chose Summer Rain by Johnny Rivers, a popular song released in 1968. According to Wikipedia:

“Summer Rain” was written by Jimmy Hendricks(!) and performed by Johnny Rivers on his 1968 LP Realization. The song reached No. 14 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, No. 6 on the U.S. Cash Box Top 100, and No. 10 in Canada in early January, 1968. “Summer Rain” is a song about lifelong love during “the summer of love” which refers to the phenomenon of Haight-Ashbury in San Francisco between 1965 and 1968.

Wikipedia

Think hippie culture and free love. Despite the song’s origins, I simply like the music and the words.

I was 8 years old in 1968. I may have remembered hearing the song in the car on road trips at that age. I suppose it wasn’t until the early 80s upon hearing it again, how much I enjoyed the idea of the lyrics as a celebration of summer. Later as I became a windsurfer, I started to appreciate the types of wind, coming from the four directions, east, west, north, south that the song mentions.

Here are my images for Summer Rain. Imagine the song is written is from my husband’s perspective. I apologize in advance for any subsequent earworms on the part of the reader!

abstract rainy day

Summer rain taps at my window
West wind soft as a sweet dream


My love warm as the sunshine
Sittin’ here by me, she’s here by me

At the delta, pre-wedding, July 2013

All summer long, we spent dancin’ in the sand

Dancin'

And the jukebox kept on playin’
Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

She wants to live in the Rockies
She says that’s where we’ll find peace

Happy on our half acre
First look at property in Washington, May 2020

Settle down, raise up a family
To call our own, yeah, we’ll have a home

House and Shop
Waiting for Shop Doors (taken 8/6)

The snow drifts by my window


North wind blowin’ like thunder
Our love’s burnin’ like fire
And she’s here by me, yeah, she’s here with me
Let tomorrow be

Swing your heart out

Summer Rain © 1967 Hendricks/Rivers

Summer Wedding, Climbing Mountains

I’m also sharing for Marsha’s Writers Quotes Wednesdays Writers’ Choice “Writer’s Choice” or Mountains this week.
Summer Rain is a celebration of my 8th wedding anniversary on August 22. In two weeks, we will be in the Sedona, Arizona area over a long weekend.

For our wedding day in 2013, I chose Climb Every Mountain from the 1959 Rodgers and Hammerstein musical The Sound of Music as the song in which I walked down the aisle with my daughters. This is one of my favorite musicals.

Wedding photo credits © Kimberly Washington 2013

This verse is my entry for WQWWC this week:

“Climb every mountain,
Ford every stream,
Follow every rainbow,
‘Till you find your dream.”

Climb Every Mountain lyrics © CONCORD MUSIC PUBLISHING LLC

I’ve always wanted to live in the mountains and we do!

Next Week’s Monthly Color Challenge

color challenge burlywood

Next week’s photo challenge is the Monthly Color challenge exploring the color “burlywood”—a light shade of brown, kind of like khakis. By this time of year in the Northern hemisphere, this color should be seen everywhere in nature!

Sunday Stills Moves to Canada for Three Weeks Beginning August 22

Many thanks to Natalie of Natalie the Explorer who will guest host Sunday Stills while I take a break and travel a bit. You may know her Weekend Coffee Share Feature. Natalie has chosen the themes for Sunday Stills which are as follows:
8/22 In the Garden
8/29 Afloat
9/5 Colorful Murals

Throughout this post, I share various images for the following challenges:

Johnbo’s Cellpic Sunday and Lens-Artists Challenge hosted by Patti this week.

Bugged Blogger Links from Last Week

Sunday Stills is a wonderful community of bloggers and photographers who desire to connect with one another. Below are the last week’s links from bloggers who shared their favorite insect and bug photos.

A Day in the Life

Always Write

Blog of Hammad Rais

Bushboy’s World

Cats and Trails and Garden Tales

Cee’s Photo Challenges

Deb’s World

Denyse Whelan Blogs

Easin’ Along Image shared in comments—you gotta see it!

Equipoise Life

Graham’s Island

Geriatrix Fotogallery

Heaven’s Sunshine

Hugh’s Views and News Image in Comments

Kamerapromenader

Loving Life

Light Write Life

Light Words

Musin’ with Susan

Now At Home

Nuthouse Central

Retirementally Challenged

Retirement Reflections Image shared on Instagram

Take a Walk

Travel With Me

Woolly Muses

Working on Exploring

I’m looking forward to your creativity with song lyrics or poetry this week highlighted by your photos! Have a great week! Join me next week for the monthly color challenge before I go on my break!

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© 2021 Copyright — secondwindleisure.com — All Rights Reserved

Sunday Stills: A Solstice #Sunrise-Sunset

Sunset on Arrowroot

Sunday, June 20th marks the summer solstice in the northern hemisphere. What a perfect week to show off our sunrises and sunsets!

But First, The Solstice!

If being celestial two weeks ago wasn’t enough “geek” for you science buffs, let’s talk about the solstice.

The word solstice is derived from the Latin sol (“sun”) and sistere (“to stand still”), because at the solstices, the Sun’s declination appears to “stand still”; that is, the seasonal movement of the Sun’s daily path (as seen from Earth) pauses at a northern or southern limit before reversing direction.

Wikipedia

It’s hard to believe we will lose two minutes of daylight a day in the northern hemisphere for the next six months as we head into Autumn and Winter. As the southern hemisphere experiences their winter solstice Monday, folk down-under will gradually see two extra minutes of daylight each day.

After years of living in both Southern and Northern California, I got used to summer nights lasting until 8:45pm or so, with first light around 5:30am. One year I spent the 4th of July celebration with my Dad in the town of Alturas, in the most northeast corner of California. The fireworks didn’t start until 10:30pm when it finally got dark! As much as I thought that was impressive, Spokane (Nine Mile Falls), WA, sees 16 hours of official daylight on the summer solstice.

Image screenshot from Weather Underground App

You can google more information here if you are interested in seeing your own daylight hours.

There is also something called “Civil Twilight,” where light begins or remains in the sky before the sun rises or sets. Spokane’s begins as early as 4:10am and the light in the sky ends at 9:35pm, that’s about 6.5 hours of darkness. I know many of you live in more northern latitudes (Alaska, Canada, Sweden, etc) and it would be interesting to know what your sunset time will be on the solstice.

For you in the southern latitudes, what time did the sun go down on this cold winter day?

The construction crew is slowly building the polebarn/shop. This was taken at 10:00 pm a few days ago. Still a lot of light in the sky, enough to hide the stars.

“What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.”

John Steinbeck

And so the world turns.

Now that all the science is out of the way, how do you celebrate the solstice? In my world, and for this week’s Sunday Stills challenge theme, we will simply enjoy sharing our favorite sunrises and sunsets.

The Heat is On

Similar to our experience with the summer solstice is the heat that comes with enjoying what summer brings. Marsha at Always Write challenges us this week with “heat” for her Writers Quotes Wednesday Writers Challenge. Marsha has a series of hilarious quotes you don’t want to miss. I found a few of my own to share. But I thought this one seemed appropriate since we just read about daylight hours.

“One benefit of Summer was that each day we had more light to read by.”

Jeannette Walls, The Glass Castle

“Dear weather, stop showing off… We know you’re HOT!!!”
“I’m glad it’s finally hot enough to complain about how hot it is.”

Authors Unknown
Weathered sun

And with Summer’s Heat Comes…

To me sunflowers are a wonderful representation of all things “sun.”

red gold sunrise sunflower

The sunflower’s name comes from its tendency to reposition itself to face the sun. It’s genus, Helianthus, is rooted in two Greek words — “helios” meaning sun and “anthos” meaning flower. Here is really great article about sunflowers if you want more information…

I miss my sunflowers, the ones I planted from seeds back in my former home in Sacramento. I spent hours taking photos over three summers. I even got great close-ups of bees seeking pollen!

As I’ve mentioned before, I now live in Eastern Washington where sunflowers and their close cousins, coneflowers, grow wild on our property among the pine trees and lupines.

As always, my sunflowers are shared for Cee’s Flower of the Day!

Ready for Some Sunrises?

It has been a few years since we visited Baja Sur, Mexico. We typically went in late December and early January. Sunrise was at 7:00 a.m. and I made sure I set my alarm to enjoy the spectacular sunrises over the Sea of Cortez. A real treat to see the sunrise over the ocean instead of the sunset expected on the US West Coast over the Pacific Ocean.

Sunrise over Sea of Cortez
Sunrise over Sea of Cortez
A sunrise brings a new day and a renewed chance of happiness.

How About Some Sunsets?

A sunset over the Sacramento River Delta never failed to inspire.

Clouds and waves combined with a sunset provide lovely textures in nature

After a warm, windy session windsurfing, sometimes a sunset sail is the most memorable.

Summer Sun sets on windsurfer getting the last bits of wind.

“Wind is God’s way of balancing heat.”

Author Unknown

Or how about a sunset in the Yosemite high country?

Half light of Tuolumne Meadows sunset

Turn around and even better, alpenglow appears on the opposite horizon from the setting sun!

Alpenglow Yosemite Tuolumne Meadows
Unlike the direct sunlight around sunrise or sunset, the light that causes alpenglow is reflected off airborne precipitation, ice crystals, or particulates in the lower atmosphere. source

A look at my world during the summer. Linking to Lens-Artists challenge “World.”

In case you need ideas, consider sharing anything anything related to sunrises and sunsets: sunflowers, glow, lighthouse, brilliance, alpenglow, dusk, twilight, dawn, rooster crowing, Stonehenge, stone circles, sun god, ancient myths, etc.

In the Pink Blogger Links

Color challenges seem to be waayyy popular! Bloggers shared 17 links just on Sunday alone with a grand total of 33 by Saturday! Thank you for your continuing support and I hope to see a lot more for this week’s prompt!

I am also “sharing my snaps” over at Denyse Whelan’s blog this Monday!

I’ll sign off with this image of me from 2019 enjoying a very boozy sunset Mai Tai at the Bali Hai restaurant in San Diego in Fall 2019.

Terri enjoying a beverage at Bali Hai

Next week, we explore the Great Outdoors (June is Great Outdoors month somewhere). I will share a sneak peak perspective of Becky B’s July Squares: Trees.

Enjoy the solstice and have a wonderful week ahead!

© 2021 Copyright—All rights reserved—secondwindleisure.com

Sunday Stills Color Challenge: A Portland Summer in #Pink

Painnted Rose
SS Banner Color

Welcome to the Sunday Stills Monthly Color challenge this week!

June’s color is any shade of pink.

“Pink is a beautiful color, because it is one of the colors that the sun makes at twilight and in the dawns.”

C. JoyBell

Depending on where you live geographically, you may be experiencing shades of pink all around you as we near summer here in the northern hemisphere. If the color pink escapes you in nature now, I’m sure your photo archives are full of pinks. And who needs nature to see pink, right?

Since summer is basically here, it’s time for water sports and I won’t be caught dead (poor pun, I know) without my pink life vests. More about water in a minute.

Security dressed in pink!

Before I begin sharing examples of pink, I’m joining Marsha from Always Write for her weekly feature WQW Writer’s Challenge. This week’s quotes focus on summer. Nothing says summer like the image above, or this quote:

Roses quote

Portland’s Parade of Pink

Portland, Oregon, is home to the Portland International Rose Test Garden. It has been a few years since I visited, but the gardens are stunning. Roses really love the climate and in fact, Portland is known as “the City of Roses.”

Last week we spent the weekend in Beaverton, a suburb of Portland, Oregon to gather with my cousin and our family as she put her beloved husband to rest. We stayed in an Airbnb in the Highland area and I had the chance to take a walk through this gorgeous neighborhood. It was a bit overcast so the various lush shades of green made the pink pop even more so! Please enjoy my gallery of pink roses and other pink florals.

I was THISCLOSE to visiting my blogger pal Cee but we didn’t have time. These florals are shared for Cee’s Flower of the Day challenge.

My mom’s birthday was this week (June 9th). She would have been 81. Turns out she shares her birthday with blogger Anne Leueen of Horse Addict! Anne shares her spot-on thoughts on aging and I miss my mom every day. My mom wanted to be healthy and she strove for an active lifestyle. But RA and dementia took their toll and she passed in March 2020. Before we sold mom’s house last August, my daughter attempted to rescue her beloved roses.

Mom's last rose

Sadly, the two plants did not survive our trip north. I intend to plant some roses in her honor once we figure out our backyard landscape plan.

As I continued my walk, I found the opening to the suburban trails that so uniquely define the Beaverton-Tigard neighborhoods. I happened along a youth baseball game in progress and stood for a moment to watch youth playing, as proud parents watched the game. Even this mom was in a pink mood to go watch her child play baseball!

Walking to the game
Wearing pink for the game!

I’m pleased to share this post for Denyse’s Life This Week Link-up!

Summer Hummer

Inspired by Lisa’s Bird Weekly challenge, at the 11th hour, I found a freckled hummingbird in my archives, interestingly surrounded in pink.

freckled hummingbird

No editing here (other than crop and exposure), just a trick of my camera and lighting I suppose!

Closer to Home

I felt I was in heaven on Memorial Day as we took the eight-minute drive to Tumtum, a lakeside resort area that sits on the oxbow of the Spokane River, dammed on either side to create Long Lake. This was our first time paddling in Washington waters and on my brand-new inflatable pinkish-purple SUP. Hans got in on the action, too, as we took turns watching the dogs.

Isn’t it a relief to see the world getting back to normal?

Sunday Stills Photo Challenge Reminders

  • Please create a new post for the theme or link a recent one.
  • Title your blog post a little differently than mine.
  • Don’t forget to create a pingback to this post so that other participants can read your post. I also recommend adding your post’s URL into the comments.
  • Entries for this theme can be posted all week.
  • Use hashtag #SundayStills for sharing on social media.

I hope you had as much fun posting your celestial images as I had to see them all. Many mentioned that this was quite the challenge but we had 19 links to the theme. Celestial moments in blog land indeed! Please take a moment and visit two or three if you haven’t already. Reminder, each week I share your posts on the following week’s post, so please link to my post by Saturday 5pm to make it onto the list!

Out of This World Bloggers!

Next week’s theme is “sunrise or sunset” as we celebrate the solstice. Did you notice that the solstice could be considered a celestial event and many sunrises/sunsets are pink? Cornfused? No worries, have fun, and have a wonderful week!

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© 2021 Copyright—All rights reserved—secondwindleisure.com

Sunday Stills: #Perspectives on …

Pinnacle Peak

Don’t you love photo challenges? Even if you are not a photographer yourself, I’m sure you appreciate the lovely images your fellow bloggers share. Over the years, I’ve been inspired by the perspectives and stories of their images.

This week’s Sunday Stills theme is “perspective.” Yes, I borrowed the theme from Becky B’s Squares July photo challenge and enjoy promoting her challenge to others (not that she needs it)! Plus, I love to be challenged too! Remember your main photo needs to be square!

squares photo challenge

This post is chock full of images for some of my favorite photo challenges! See the end of each section for which photo challenges I’ve linked to and where you can find more inspiration.

Did you know that “Perspectives On Leisure” was the name of my blog when I first started in Fall 2014? I later changed it to Second Wind Leisure Perspectives for a variety of reasons. It doesn’t really matter. I guess that’s MY perspective (wink wink).

Floral and Summer Perspectives

“There is that in the glance of a flower which may at times control the greatest of creation’s braggart Lords.”

John Muir

A summer mustard flower’s perspective of the Antioch Bridge in the Sacramento River Delta.

spring flower perspective

Spring is the time to plant sunflowers from seeds. But summer isn’t official until the sunnies burst into bloom. They bloom quickly in the warm sunshine, often in less than 48 hours.

Another floral perspective of Pinnacle Peak in Northern Arizona.

Pinnacle Peak
Pinnacle Peak

These perspectives are inspired by Amy’s summer theme for the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge and Cee’s Flower of the Day.

Perspectives of Point of View and Geometry

A warm summer day at Lake Natoma where I often enjoy stand-up paddling. At 9:30 am there were already many families enjoying the water.

Late spring on Lake Natoma

Armed with the knowledge of the upcoming square perspectives challenge, I made sure to get several POV shots. This next one shows the same boys at play.

Boys at water play

At least their life vests are close-by.

While out for a walk, I caught lovely shadows and geometric perspectives on the sidewalk alongside the City park.

Street posts in shadow

Becky B’s July Squares Challenge has begun. Read how to join here.

Summer is here and many bloggers take a short break. Perhaps you are in a slump and need more inspiration for your blog? If you are looking for more photo challenges, take a look at Marsha’s page of challenges.

What’s Your Perspective?

I am looking forward to seeing your images depicting perspectives. Show us in your images, stories, poetry, and other creative ideas!

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© 2020 Copyright-All rights reserved-secondwindleisure.com

If you enjoyed this post, perhaps you might be interested in this:

Sunday Stills: #Stillness of Summer

Molten Delta Sunset

If you reside in the northern hemisphere, the summer solstice arrived on Friday, marking the longest day of the year. I acknowledge my friends in the southern hemisphere as midwinter has arrived!

Is the notion of stillness even possible during the summer? For most of my adult life, summer was constantly go-go-go, with work demands in aquatics and public recreation and leisure, family vacation time and just being outdoors enjoying the sun and long days.

Stillness, our Sunday Stills theme this week, seemed appropriate during this month of June.

These days, I’ve had more opportunities to enjoy stillness as I work from home all summer preparing for Fall classes and writing my next e-book. I have found myself rather isolated, which is OK after all those years of frenetic work schedules and overtime. But in that isolation can I find true stillness?

I’ve never been one to meditate, and I do try to pray and give thanks to God daily, if briefly. But to truly commune in stillness seems so difficult as we are surrounded by constant distractions, noise, media, the urge to “do,” … and the list can be endless.

Next to our campsite at the delta, my husband’s friend longs for peace and stillness. So much so that he built a temporary cabana tent next to his trailer, which closes him off from the very reason to be there, to enjoy the social aspects of camping and windsurfing with friends. I suppose people will go to great lengths to create a sense of stillness.

For some folks, stillness may equal boredom, but it takes a little effort to appreciate the early morning quiet once in a while. If you are a multi-tasker like me, you know what I mean!

“When everything is moving and shifting, the only way to counteract chaos is stillness. When things feel extraordinary, strive for ordinary. When the surface is wavy, dive deeper for quieter waters.”

Kristin Armstrong
Ghostly Cruise Ship
The stillness of a ghostly cruise ship in Hilo Bay, Hawaii

Many of us find stillness in a magnificent sunrise or sunset that marks the beginning or end of our day, a common time to reflect or to meditate and appreciate the beauty of those moments.

Molten Delta Sunset

Lately, I’ve been spending more time in my back yard (thanks to recent foot surgery, which keeps me closer to home). In addition to my little sunflower patch, I’ve created a small garden at the corner of my deck.

From my bedroom office window, I can see the flowers and greenery along with the hummingbird feeder that attracts our resident Allens and Annas. Ironically, as they busily flit around, their very presence a bundle of energy, I find their actions soothing amidst the overall stillness of the setting.

Hummingbird and feeder

Surgery Update

I got my cast this week, which I will have to wear until the end of July. Five more weeks! Because of the pins inserted into the metatarsal to keep the bone from its inevitable subluxation to form another bunion, I cannot bear any weight on the left foot. And here I naively thought I would get a walking cast, but I am getting more adept at using the knee scooter.

Guess what? This gives me more opportunities to search for stillness and continue to stay close to home. What was it that Dorothy said to the Wizard of Oz, “there is no place like home?” I will take this advice to heart and spend the rest of June and July keeping weight off the foot, following the surgeon’s advice and continuing to seek stillness!

“Learning how to be still, to really be still and let life happen – that stillness becomes a radiance.”

Morgan Freeman

Sunday Stills Reminders

  • Please create a new post for the theme.
  • Title your post a little differently than mine.
  • Don’t forget to create a pingback to this post so that other participants can read your post. I also recommend adding your post’s URL into the comments.
  • Entries for this theme can be shared all week. Use hashtag #SundayStills for sharing on social media.

© 2019 Copyright-All rights reserved-secondwindleisure.com

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No Excuses #Fitness for Extreme Weather

Shoes were made for walking

There is no excuse more prevalent than dealing with extreme weather conditions to thwart your plans for physical activity.

“An early-morning walk is a blessing for the whole day.”

Henry David Thoreau

“But it’s too HOT to exercise!”

Everyone

In the northern hemisphere, today marks the summer solstice, the first day of summer. Here in Northern California, the heat was a predictable 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 Celsius).

For my southern hemisphere friends who are enjoying enduring COLD temps now, the same principles of using temperature as an excuse not to exercise still apply. See links near the end of this post.

Today I am sharing excerpts from my upcoming work-in-progress book No Excuses Fitness as they relate to exercising in hot or cold weather, from my chapter on external barriers.

How often do we make the time to get some well-needed exercise or physical activity only to be thwarted by some external barrier?

External obstacles or barriers generally include geographical, environmental and structural. Those geographical barriers include weather and climate, changing seasons and outdoor temperatures.

For example, how can weather impact your exercise plans? Perhaps you plan to go for a jog on your lunch break and find the temperature is simply going to be too hot. For some this is a barrier that stands in the way. Is there an indoor place in which you can work out? How about a swimming pool where you can join a water exercise class or engage in lap swimming?

Do you live in a part of the country where the possibility of extreme weather conditions prevents you from simply walking outdoors?

No Excuses Fitness Copyright 2019-2020 © Terri Webster Schrandt
Women Walking for exercise
Image by Unsplash

According to Fitbit, taking 10,000 steps “adds up to about five miles each day for most people, which includes about 30 minutes of daily exercise—satisfying the CDC’s recommendation of at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week.”

Working your exercise regimen around seasonal weather and extreme temperatures is do-able with some pre-planning.

Local Recreation and Park Facilities and Programs

Knowing what your local parks and community recreation center or local swimming pool offers can potentially provide you with plenty of ideas for exercising in warm temperatures.

If your summer evenings are free and it is cooler to exercise, consider these options:

  • Many recreation and exercise programs are offered after work hours during the week and on weekends.
  • Consider trying a short-duration exercise program with a beginning and end date.
  • Some communities have private swim or racquet clubs with a variety of fitness amenities that you can join for a limited time if you don’t want to commit to a year-long membership.
  • On warm summer nights, trade your walking or jogging clothes for your bathing suit and join your local swimming pool’s water aerobics class.
  • For more cardio, lap swimming is also a great workout. If you don’t want to get your hair or face wet, use a kickboard and work out your legs, or perform the breaststroke or sidestroke.

(Image by Unsplash)

  • Even if your swimming skills are underdeveloped, don a pair of water shoes and walk back and forth in the shallow end. These are surprisingly effective alternatives to lap swimming and will keep you cool.

Friends and Family

Longer summer evenings mean more time for evening fitness activities with your family. After dinner, get everyone moving during a brisk evening walk. If you have dogs, they will appreciate walking in the cooler evening temps, too.

I walk with one of my friends from the gym one day a week for an hour. We meet at her workplace and walk in the neighborhood, as she graciously walks one of my dogs.

For Morning People

If evenings don’t work, try waking up earlier in the morning with the earlier sunrise. An early morning walk, run, or another type of exercise can really kick-start your day.

For myself, I prefer physical activity in the mornings. In Sacramento, we usually have cooler mornings than evenings. If the temperature will be above 95 degrees on a given day, I’ll take the dogs for a 20-minute walk, come back home, eat breakfast then head to the gym.

If I am home on a weekend, I will get up early, grab my inflatable SUP and take the short 15-minute drive to the lake and get a stand-up paddle session in before the heat intensifies and the crowds arrive.

When I worked full time the last 5 years before I retired, I adjusted my work schedule to arrive at 9am and did my gym workout at 6:15am, giving me enough time to shower, eat breakfast and get to my workplace.

Once you’ve adjusted to early-morning workouts, add another day or two to the routine. You may decide that you really like it and be motivated to continue.

What is Stopping You?

Don’t let hot weather prevent you from getting your exercise each day. Life can get in the way and disrupt our routines, but don’t let a couple of setbacks be a barrier to regular exercise. Unfortunately, it seems easier to abandon our exercise plans when faced with extreme weather and temperature.

And of course, be safe! If the weather conditions are dangerous or if the air quality is poor, stay indoors.

It is important to remember that you only need 30 minutes of physical activity a day to reap countless health benefits. Three 10-minute sessions briskly walking outdoors on a hot day still works.

For alternatives to your favorite exercise, taking a walk is always better than not going at all, whether you are wearing your shorts to stay cool or your scarf or hat to stay warm.

For those interested in cold weather fitness tips check out these posts from Sue at Sizzling Toward Sixty and 7 Tips For Exercising in Cold Weather.

Join me next month for my discussion on safely bouncing back from injuries and surgery.

Sunday Stills: Signs of #Autumn

signs of fall leaves

Autumn Has Arrived, like a postcard

Saturday was the official start of Autumn with the autumnal equinox. According to Internet sources,

…the Autumnal equinox occurs the moment the Sun crosses the celestial equator – the imaginary line in the sky above Earth’s Equator – from north to south. This happens either on September 22, 23, or 24 every year.

When this happens, both the Northern and Southern hemispheres will experience an equal amount of daylight, hence the word “equinox,” Latin for Equal Night. For those south of the equator, it’s the beginning of spring.

For many, Autumn marks a kind of sadness as longer nights set in. For myself, I love this time of year. After so many hectic summers working as a full-time Aquatics Director, trying not to lose my mind after working 30 days straight, being on emergency stand-by or dealing with 150 lifeguards and their drama, fall was a welcome respite at work. It meant I could be in my office and get administrative work done as I looked forward to some vacation time for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Now that I teach in Fall and Spring semesters, my Autumns are ironically busy, but in a different way. I don’t have to deal with the threat of drownings or other emergencies (unless you call a student’s desperate plea for an extension on their term paper an emergency). Plus I am inspired every day that I am on campus watching the leaves change from shades of green to a brilliant variety of colors.

This is one of my glorious views when the ginkgo trees hit their peak!

Campus Ginkos create both a canopy and a carpet of yellow

On a bike ride last weekend, on one side of the American River Bike Trail, were bushes of yellow cone flowers or Black-eyed Susans, which to me just scream “summer is still alive and well!”

Black-Eyed Susan on the trail
But just down the trail were some deciduous trees providing the preview of Fall shown in this image. The signs of Autumn SLOWwwwly morph our warm September days into those longed-for crisp Fall days.

signs of fall leaves

The traditional Autumn colors normally peak here in mid-November, around Veterans Day. Whenever we travel to San Diego for Christmas holidays, Autumn still shows her lovely self in many of the Liquid Amber trees that are still draped in Fall splendor.

California is slow to get into Autumn but we get a long dose of it over several months, depending where you live.

Which just makes it that more special to me as I fill up my Dropbox with yet another set of images of Autumn. For now I will continue to love Indian Summer and embrace the sunny yellows.

For those in the Southern hemisphere, tell me what you like about your autumn!

Festival of Leaves is back!

If your inner geek still needs more of a scientific explanation of the autumnal equinox, check out this article 8 Things to Know About Autumn.

Show us your favorite photos, poems, music, or stories of Autumn from your perspective for Sunday Stills! Link up or pingback your post to this post!

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Sunday Stills: Whistle While You #Work

Stack of papers to be graded

This holiday weekend, Labor Day (in the U.S.), is the traditional end to the summer, as school begins, and vacations are all but over.

According to the US Department of Labor, “Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.”

Imagine what our country (or any) would be without workers. This holiday was to be in honor of the Labor unions that protect workers from harsh and unrealistic conditions as a result of working in factories.

For Sunday Stills, if you haven’t quite guessed the theme, it is WORK!

We value work so much so that we spend most of our childhood preparing for our future careers.

Which of course leads me into education and my second act in life as a university lecturer. Yes, the featured image above is a huge stack of papers to be graded (from last year)! I won’t see a stack like this until later in the semester.

Some students have to “work” for their leisure! Student jumping off the platform “the dive” in one of our classes. This photo is submitted for “Action” for the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge this week.

Student takes the "leap of faith" 40 feet in the air at the Peak Adventures Challenge Ropes Course in Sacramento.

A summer day in the life at my former career…I trained and supervised lifeguards and swim instructors, and manage to teach a learn-to-swim class every summer. It was still work, but teaching people how to enhance their leisure time and learn new skills was rewarding and satisfying! I might have whistled a note or two while at work!

Swim-Lessons

Here are some earlier posts about “work” when I retired from the day job as aquatics director (from the early days of my blog). Click the links to read more or just check out the images.

PERSPECTIVES ON…THE BOX: RETIREMENT, PART 2

Personal things from the office

Under Construction

A peek at my home office built into the master bedroom addition.

home office in master bedroom
Home office work space

 

PERSPECTIVES ON…MOUNTAIN DESKTOP Now I take my job wherever I need to. I don’t mind grading papers with a view like this of Lake Tahoe!

College Notebooks
Mountain Desktop

Share something related to work for Sunday Stills, even if you are no longer working! I can’t wait to see what you come up with!

Reminder that there will be no Sunday Stills post for Sept 9.

I’m attending my 40-year high school reunion in San Diego that entire weekend (Thursday through Monday), and will not be able to share posts! You can always use an older theme if you miss it too much, by visiting the Sunday Stills Page.

Here is the link-up!

We had over 80 posts in August! Please welcome and visit our new Sunday Stills participants who shared their great photos and posts in August!

City Sonnet 

I’ll Give You a Letter for That

Life Lessons

MV Obsession

Netdancer’s Musings

Quaint Revival

Sights and Insights

Travel Ways

Wide Eyed in Wonder

Have a great weekend and enjoy the Labor Day Holiday!

Camera graphic

 

Sunday Stills: Water, #Water Everywhere, My #Paddleboard Can Shrink

SUP session at the delta

How do you typically spend your last Sunday in August? For lots of folks, August is still a hot month in the Northern hemisphere, so the beach fronts of rivers, lakes, and oceans see huge crowds spending their last summer weekend around the water.

Weightless water

Water is our “over-arching” theme this week for Sunday Stills. Since interpretation is wide, I encourage you to go with a sub-theme.

You probably know I am an avid water-sports person. Although I dabble in windsurfing, I prefer stand-up paddling (aka SUP).

Stand-up paddling is my sub-theme today.

Delta SUP sesson
Delta SUP session

In the “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” a poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, the sailor expresses his disdain of being surrounded by (ocean) water but none that he can actually drink.
“Water, water, everywhere, And all the boards did shrink; Water, water, everywhere, Nor any drop to drink.”
― Samuel Taylor Coleridge, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

Now you understand the inspiration for the title of my post…or do you?

With water, water everywhere, theoretically, I can use my SUP anywhere there is a body of water over a foot deep. All summer long we have had fabulous windy days at our delta campground, which means lots of windsurfing. Conditions aren’t always right for me to get out on the water with my SUP, hence my disdain over water being everywhere but the conditions are at once too windy to SUP and not windy enough to sail!

I look forward to the calm weekend days at the delta when I can get my SUP out on the water and get my dose of physical activity. SUPing is a great workout which strengthens your core, back, upper body, legs and even your feet.

SUP session in Lake Tahoe
SUP session in Lake Tahoe

Because of logistical reasons, I leave my 11-foot fiberglass, stand-up paddleboard at the delta all summer. Our campsite is a few steps away from the levee fronting the Sacramento River, making it easy to carry my board to the water. This summer at the delta I only got out on my SUP three times! I don’t have an extra SUP laying around at home, so if I want to paddle on nearby Lake Natoma or the American River near my house, I have to rent a board. Renting is fine and I have done it, but the incentive is low.

When I’ve had my SUP at home, it takes some effort to load it on top of my car and properly tie it down. That being said, try re-loading and re-tying it after one-two hours out on the water!

Exhausted much? Also, no incentive unless I have help.

Years ago, I tried an inflatable SUP but I didn’t like the bouncy, unstable feel to it. Recently, I tried a new model and it was surprisingly stable even in small waves and a little wind. Major improvements have been made using carbon stringers and other technology for stability and durability.

View of SUP
Paddler View of my inflatable SUP

Bi-annually I receive e-mails from a water-sports store in the Columbia River Gorge near Portland, Oregon about their clearance items. Recently I saw their inflatable SUPs on sale and an idea brewed in my head about how convenient it would be to have one of these available at home.

Even on clearance, these boards are pricey, so I checked out Costco and what do you know, they had an inflatable SUP package that included the board, a break-down paddle, leash and other goodies (bag and pump included), all for half the price. (No affiliate marketing going on here, just information).

SUp in bedroom
Brodie approves of my inflatable SUP!

Imagine a SUP that fits in the trunk of your car, or in the carry bag that can also be packed for air travel. Sure, inflating takes about 5 minutes with a manual pump, but a pre-work out is all good! After a couple of hours on the water, carrying the board (less than 25 pounds) back to the car, then pushing the deflate button, and poof! Done! Dried off and rolled up and into the car in less than 10 minutes.

“…and all the boards did shrink.”

Now, my incentive is strong to simply grab the bag (just under 50 pounds total), drive the 6 miles to the lake, inflate the SUP in the parking lot or right on the beach and go!

And I did.

Getting ready!

Quite the Zen experience last Saturday at 9am. Cool breeze, calm, flat water…and a ton of people out on their inflatable SUPS and other watercraft!

No excuses!

My escape is to just get in a boat SUP and disappear on the water. ~Carl Hiaasen

Enjoy this gallery of previously posted photos.

Here is a little bit more about SUPing on Folsom Lake and Lake Natoma.

Link up here or create a pingback by linking to this post! I can’t wait to see how you will interpret water for Sunday Stills!

Be sure to check out the Sunday Stills page for the September themes!

Terri_sig_palm2

 

 

Sunday Stills: Objects Over #100-Years-Old

Greek Church

Attention globetrotters! This photo challenge theme is for you! Well, it’s for anyone, of course, but since our Sunday Stills theme this week is “Objects Over 100 Years Old,” your photos from countries abroad will likely showcase places and spaces that have been around for over 100 years.

Just be careful about publishing images of artwork, sculptures and paintings, because the objects are copyrighted, even though you took the photo with your own lens. I doubt the image police are going to find you if it’s something you do infrequently.

Some of you are adept at portrait photography like fellow blogger, Lucile de Godoy, who specializes in street and portrait photography. Perhaps she has photos of objects or folks over 100 years old!

I, myself, don’t photograph a lot of architecture, although now that I sometimes post for Thursday Doors, I try to look for interesting doors when I’m out and about.

I say this because I cheated a little for this theme and borrowed one of my daughter’s photos of her trip to Greece. In the featured image above, this is the Church Zoodochos Pighi, Megalochori, on Agistri Island, Greece.

Yes, I know I need to get out more, and by that, I need to get out of the US…one of these days. For now, I must rely on historic cemeteries, California missions or downtown churches to meet the criteria of this theme.

Double Headstone

The photo was taken in the Masonic Cemetery in the town of Michigan Bluff in the Sierra Foothills in 2014. The California Gold Rush of 1849 brought hoards of homesteaders, prospectors and fortune-seekers from South America, Asia and the U.S. East Coast. Many died young from various illnesses, as their headstones reflect the dates of their lives and deaths.

Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament
Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament

Speaking of the Gold Rush, another fortune-seeker, Patrick Monogue, “saved his money to live in Paris where he planned to enroll in seminary college and become a Roman Catholic priest. In 1886, Manogue was appointed as Sacramento’s first bishop. Inspired by churches he’d seen in European plazas, he worked to secure property just one block away from the capitol building, with a dream of building a cathedral in Sacramento (from Wikipedia).”

Construction on this Catholic church in downtown Sacramento began in 1887. You can see the top of the California State Capitol Building at the bottom right of the image.

For a shot of nostalgia, here is a older post I did for the original Sunday Stills, showing a photo of  Sunday Stills: San Diego Presidio.

San Diego Presidio
The Spanish Presidio in San Diego

My annual plug to celebrate the National Park Service, which celebrated its 100 years of service in 2016. My photo of the fridge magnet, artfully framed with pine needles.

NPS Logo 2016

So there you have it. Whether you have a photo of something over 100 years-old or an image that represents age, be creative and show us what you’ve got!

Many folks have also submitted wonderful poetry or flash fiction to further depict the Sunday Stills theme of the week!

Thank you for your participation! Please link up or link to this post so I can share your selections!

 

Sunday Stills: #Lazy Days of Summer

Take time to relax

We are almost at the midpoint of August which means for many, summer is nearly over. Sure the weather will still be warm in the northern hemisphere, and maybe too hot on the West Coast (the wildfires aren’t helping matters), but school starts for many youth, teens and young adults in mid- and late-August!

The featured image above shows a strong leisure ethic in a college student the very first day of classes a couple of years ago.

Educators like myself are undoubtedly putting the finishing touches on course and classroom preparations, marking a clear end to the “lazy days” of summer which happens to be our theme this week for Sunday Stills. I know several students who are already back to school!

I remember as a kid growing up in San Diego, that we did not go back to school until the second week of September, well after the traditional Labor Day holiday. We did not get out for the year until mid-June, but my definition of summer always seemed like June through August to me.

Did you have time for some laziness this summer? I think I had more than my share after experiencing a crazy-busy spring. I took the whole month of June off where I didn’t do any course prep. I managed to write a few thousand words into my No Excuses Fitness book project, but I indeed felt lazy overall.

It didn’t help that we opened a Netflix account in May. Now both my hubby and I see the Millennials’ appeal of binge watching new and old movies or new-to-us Netflix series a couple of hours a night. However, that practice will need to be reigned in by early September!

Luckily my new Fitbit Charge 2 (not an ad) nags me every hour to get some steps in, so the appearance of laziness will stay in my own head!

I still have two more weeks before I step foot onto the college campus, so until that day arrives, I plan to experience a few more lazy days, now counted in just a few hours.

Here are my photo interpretations of “Lazy Days.”

I’ve been a little lazy capturing delta sunsets this summer. How perfect on a hot summer evening that the sun seems to rest a while among the wind turbines.

sunset among the windturbines 

Still obsessed transfixed with my backyard sunflowers, I captured the lazy opening of these petals on a newly-bloomed sunflower.

lazy opening of sunflower petals
Opposite of lazy? This bee on the same sunflower is heavily laden with sunflower pollen, giving “busy bee” a whole new meaning!

Busy bee is anything but lazy

All the photos in today’s post were captured by my Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge.

How do you like to spend your lazy days?

If you are on Instagram and have some sunflower shots to share, please join me for the rest of August using hashtag #monthofsunflowers

Link here or share in the comments!

Camera graphic

Sunday Stills: #Drunk with…? or #Summer Drink

Tiki Bar Ready for Fun

The last Sunday in July challenges Sunday Stills participants to find an image depicting “Drunk with…?” Since this is indeed a challenging theme, I thought I would add an optional related theme “Summer Drink.”

Your theme can be centered around alcohol but it doesn’t have to be. I’m not much of a drinker although a special occasion may find me enjoying a skinny cocktail.

What is your take on “Drunk with…?” I’ve heard the expression “drunk with power,” or “drunk with pleasure.” Perhaps one of my blogger friends can show us what this means in a photo, a poem, a short story, or…?

For my own purposes, I chose to go with Summer Drink. I admit I may need more literal themes to inspire me on these hot, lazy days of summer.

This is one of my backyard hummers enjoying his summer drink.

Is a hummingbird really ever satisfied?

My hubby’s collection of steins from Germany and Europe.

Hubby's Stein Collection, from Germany and Hungary

A leisurely sip of cold beer on a hot summer day.

Lounge chair and beer

Again, I rarely drink these days, not that I did before. I’ve only been really drunk a couple of times and I HATED the feeling of being out of control, the accompanying sick stomach and the inevitable hangover.

I suppose I can be simply drunk with joy whenever I am out experiencing summer leisure activities.

Dancin'

Sunday Stills Stats

In July, during just the 4 weeks, we had over 60 bloggers share their posts.

 

We’ve had over 100 links since we started Sunday Stills in May.

Thank you to those who regularly share posts for Sunday Stills! I hope you are enjoying this as much as I am!

Link up here with your post! I share all posts on my Second Wind Leisure Facebook page, on Twitter and on Flipboard or Pinterest.

August themes are up for view! Visit my Sunday Stills page here!

Terri_sig_palm2

The Wonders of the Public Pool

Children playing in swimming pool

I have managed to combine three photo challenges into this one photograph.

Summer in July finds children counting the minutes until their neighborhood public swimming pool opens for the day. Although I no longer oversee the daily operations of these pools, I do appreciate the lengths leisure professionals must go to to ensure clean, safe pools with well-trained lifeguards.

All that training and preparation for the opening of the pools makes no difference to a child.

Child plays in fountain

Inspired by these photo challenges

Terri_sig_palm2

Sunday Stills: What Does #Summer Mean to You?

Sunday Stills Summer graphic

For the Sunday Stills challenge to celebrate the first week in July, share your favorite thing about summer. You can simply share one photo of your favorite summer experience or wow us with a gallery of what summer means to you.

And it’s not just about photos…perhaps you are inspired by a song, poem, artwork, short story or something else. It would be nice to have a photo of your idea, but please be creative!

What does “summer” mean to you? Is it the warm (or hot) weather? Or…

Witnessing a refreshing summer storm?

Variety of textures in the delta

Planting and enjoying your backyard garden?

Summer Zinneas

Enjoying a water sport?

Windsurfer getting some air
Windsurfer getting some air

Enrolling the kids in some swim lessons?

Swimming lessons for youth are inexpensive and necessary!

A beautiful hike in the mountains?

Lupine view of mountains at Mammoth Lakes
Lupine view of mountains at Mammoth Lakes

Calm sunrise at a Mexican resort?

The difference a new day makes in our quest for change

Chasing your dog on the beach?

Brodie at ocean Beach San Diego
Brodie at Ocean Beach in San Diego

Stopping to smell the flowers?

Bougainvillea
Bougainvillea

Visiting a national park?

Yosemite Valley with Bridalveil Falls
Yosemite Valley

Whatever it is, please share your idea of SUMMER this week!

Instagram meme Good times and tan linesSince we are on the subject of summer, feel free to join us on Instagram for the Summer Instagram Photo Challenge that starts today. You can join anytime!

Join our growing Sunday Stills Tribe

Bloggers who shared Sunday Stills posts in June

A Day In the Life

All the Shoes I Wear

Cee’s Photography

Geriatri’x Fotogallery

Grahams Island

Hugh’s Views and News

IScribler

Idaho Bluebird

Light Words

Misty Roads Blog

Mucho Spanish

Musin’ with Susan

Na’ama Yehuda

NorCal Zen

Now at Home

OnceUponaTime&HappilyEverAfter

PilotFish Blog

Proscenium

Reflections and Nightmares- Irene A Waters

Retirementally Challenged

Sights & Insights

Smorgasbord Variety is the Spice of Life

Tales from My Lens

That Little Voice

The New 3Rs: Retire, Recharge, Reconnect

Tranature

Wind Kisses

ZestNZeal

If I left anyone out, please forgive me! I can add you!

Terri_sig_palm2

Sunday Stills: #Aroma

Mouthwatering Aroma of canapes

Mouthwatering Aroma of canapes

While the U.S. celebrates Memorial Day this weekend (holiday observed Monday), my co-host Aixa at Mucho Spanish chose the theme “aroma” for the Sunday Stills photo challenge.

Memorial Day weekend is the traditional “unofficial” kick-off to the summer season here in the Northern Hemisphere. I, myself, am at the Sacramento Delta for a long weekend as this publishes. Part of the tradition includes backyard BBQ filling the air with mouthwatering aromas of chicken, salmon, tri-tip (my hubby’s specialty) and other grilled treats!

The above image shows an array of canapes perfect to whet your appetite!

Deepest gratitude to those who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation.

Last week as I rode my bike around the neighborhood, I noticed many folks preparing their RVs for a long weekend excursion.

Here in Northern California we are within two hours of either the Sierra Nevadas (Lake Tahoe, Gold Country, and Yosemite just 4 hours south east) and the San Francisco Bay area and the ocean. In between are countless campgrounds, lakes, rivers and other wonderful leisure places.

Each with their own, distinct aromas.

In one of the classes I teach, we study a concept called “smellscape,” sort of an exploration of the senses. Students are asked to think about their favorite leisure places and identify the scents, smells, odors and aromas associated with them.

For me, my favorite scent is the blast of pine that fills the cool mountain air as you enter the forest. As kids on our long drive into Yosemite from the Mohave Desert along the Eastern Sierra Nevada, we rolled down the car windows and drank in the scent, as soon as we reached 7000 feet elevation and saw the trees.

Morning glow on I-5

Similarly, there is such a distinctive smell associated with the ocean as soon as you pull into the parking lot at the southern California beaches.

The salt air, sun-warmed asphalt and sidewalks, BBQs, sand and ocean air create a cacophony of smells that announces “you are now at the beach.”

the beach is calling

So, take a moment, close your eyes and think of scents that bring you joy and remind you of your favorite leisure activities.

What are your favorite aromas? Please share photos that represent them!


May is National Water Safety MonthBeing that this post publishes during Memorial Day Weekend, I am compelled to share one more Water Safety post. 20+ years working in the public swimming pool and aquatics industry will do that to a person!

ABCDs of Being Water Safe

 


Too busy to post because of the holiday? You are never too late to post and link-up. Join us anytime!

Terri_sig_palm2