Another Stage of My Life

I have experienced this several times in my life. At first, I wasn’t sure what I had experienced. (Maybe, even now, I am not sure.) All I Know is that suddenly I am in a new stage of life with a somewhat new me. I begin to feel that life is like a hop-on-hop-off train tour (I prefer train ride ;-). The only thing different is that we don’t decide when to hop on and when to hop off. It’s more like when we are sleeping, someone’s managed to throw us off the train or carry us back on… and then we continue our journey and arrive at our next destination (stage of life).

I haven’t blogged for many days. First, I attended a family reunion at Chesapeake Bay at the end of July. It was one of the best: the weather was excellent (not crazily hot like every other year), and everyone was relaxed and having fun. When I came back, I was anxious to blog about it. Other than Mother Nature, I credited this best family reunion to my sister’s great planning and organizing. I wanted to share with you why I think this family reunion succeeded.

bay1s

JandKidss

But we have taken many good family photos. I wanted to make a photobook, my very first one. I chose to focus on making the photobook instead of blogging. I knew the only way I would be able to complete a photobook was to give it 100% of my time.

photo1s

It took less than a week to get the book done. I had 2 days before my daughter’s home visit. Now I was anxious to blog not only about my family reunion, but also the process of making my photobook.

To my surprise, even though I had a strong desire to blog, I chose to rest instead. I didn’t quite understand my decision, but I was comfortable with it.

My daughter was home for a week. Two days after she left, we were on our way to Alaska.

Alska1

alaska4s

alaska2s

After the Alaska cruise, we visited my niece and nephew in Seattle (my nephew’s family came to Seattle too). Then I was sick. I took time to recover from the cold.

It was in the middle of recovering from the cold, I suddenly realized that I was no longer the same me as before. It was clear to me that living-my-life has become the only important thing in my mind. I mean being aware of every moment and treasure it, pay attention to each breath and each step I take… all those simple things in life. It’s ok that if I don’t write another word; it’s ok that I don’t take another photo; it’s ok that I don’t blog… I want to live consciously (is that the right way to say it?) and not in an auto-pilot mode to live my life.

What does this mean to my blog? It means that I probably won’t post as often as before, but when I post, it is more from my heart than just because I think it is time to post 😉 I will continue reading everyone’s blog, but I probably will comment less. If I see other people already made a comment that I want to make, I will “like” that comment to show “I agree.”

And I will continue writing and photographing, but only after I sleep, eat, rest, and maybe exercise 😉

So nice to be back! Thanks for visiting my blog.

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About Helen C

A retired computer programmer who loves writing and photographing, and has managed to publish a YA novel "Jin-Ling’s Two Left".
This entry was posted in photo, photo and thoughts. Bookmark the permalink.

47 Responses to Another Stage of My Life

  1. sunsetdragon says:

    Your photos of sunset and Alaska are so breath taking. Seattle drives me crazy and I always leave with my sinus plugged and aching.
    Life happens and we slow down and it is ok. See you whenever you can get here and remember life is an adventure right tup until our last breath.
    Have a wonderful adventure.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Ruth. I like what you said that life is an adventure right up until our last breath. I wish I felt that way when I was much younger. Now that I have to slow down somewhat, I also feel that I have a lot to catch up 😉 But at this moment, sowing down seems winning. 😉
      Take care.

      Like

  2. loisajay says:

    This is the way to live, Helen. On your terms and doing what feels right for you. I so admire you. Your posts are so special, as is your photography. I am amazed at the book. Blog or book? Oh, I am so happy you chose ‘book.’ Enjoy, Helen. XO

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Lois. It’s a photobook that contains many photos we took at the family reunion. I hope it will be something that my family will treasure. I also have to make one or two for my daughter. Scanning old photos to make a photobook… So many “other” fun things to do… 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  3. seeker says:

    You have given meaning to your life, Helen! Good on you! Perpetua

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Marie says:

    First, stunning Alaska shots, especially the last one. It is a beautiful state. Second, it is always best to live life based on how you feel, not on what others might expect. Taking time to smell the roses is more important than posting pictures of them. 🙂 Enjoy!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Marie, I like how you said it: Taking time to smell the roses is more important than posting pictures of them. That’s exactly how I feel at this moment. For the pas two years, I only saw flowers through the viewfinder. It was okay because that was what I wanted to do, but now I really want to smell the flower 😉
      Do you live in NZ? I’ll visit NZ next year (at least it’s a plan for now). Can’t wait. I think there are a lot of flowers there…
      Take care.

      Like

  5. Amy says:

    Can’t express the stage of life any better, Helen! The photos you selected said the stage changes beautifully. “being aware of every moment and treasure it” is a wonderful thing. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us. It’s great to have you around, even you don’t comment.
    Thank you for your never-ending support, always. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Amy. Not sure I have given you any support. I always go to your blog to learn! 😉 Blogging still means a lot to me. I really love our blogging community! One project I want to start is to scan my daughter photos (since she was a baby) and organize them into a photobook. It’s a huge project. I can see myself get lost in that project from time to time 😉
      Whenever you post a new entry, I will get an email so I wouldn’t miss it. I enjoy reading your blog! 😉

      Like

      • Amy says:

        Thank you for saying that, Helen. You taught me to appreciate street shots, being sensitive about people (strangers), beauty of our surrounding through your photos.
        Scanning these many photos is a huge project. You reminded me that the scrapbooks (by age) I made for my daughter before my blog time. I think she will enjoy it someday.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Cee Neuner says:

    Oh Helen, this is the most you I have ever heard you be. Life should be our focus and have fun with it. Thanks so much for reminder. We do have a lot to catch up on. Your photos are adorable. I make a book 2009 I believe of my photography and it was fun. 😀 Stay yourself. 😀 Many hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Cee. 2009? Isn’t time to make another photobook? 😉
      I am particularly interested in making some photobooks for my daughter. I have so many years to catch up on ;-(
      Even though I haven’t participate your challenges as often as before, I continue collecting photos for them 😉 I have a stack of odd photos. 😉 They will come. Ha. Hugs.

      Like

  7. Glad to know Helen you have fantastic reunion with your family and then your trip to Alaska. Lovely shots of Alaska.

    I feel little sad now that we will get lesser blogs from you to enjoy. But glad in another sense that your blogs and photos will be more much higher quality and refined, which it had been even now. All the best dear

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Suyash. Not sure if I have missed any of your posts. I am going to change the setting so I will get an email when you post a new entry.
      Life is good, when I focus on the living part 😉 It’s fall, the most beautiful time for MN. Hope you enjoy your time too.

      Liked by 1 person

      • In last one month or so, I have not been regular with posting. So, I am sure you may not have missed any of my post. Glad to know that you will get an email now.
        We had been to MN Arboretum last weekend and Fort Smelling Park. It was good weekend, bright sunny and warm. Fall is such a beautiful and colorful time. Will post some shots soon hopefully. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        • Helen C says:

          Suyash, didn’t we have a wonderful fall this year? We visited a state park almost every week and enjoyed every minute of it. I love Minnesota… I mean this fall. 😉 Take care.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Absolutely Helen. I totally agree with you. This year weather has been amazing so far. It’s been November now and its lovely weather till now, except for last few days. Still no snow so far and freezing temperature. I hope winters are not so harsh this year 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

  8. Dalo 2013 says:

    Wonderful photos and a perfect outlook in life 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      I think you may be too young to understand what I meant 😉 It doesn’t matter. I think you are wonderful and I enjoy reading everything you wrote. I enjoy more about life now, and that’s the most important thing 😉

      Like

      • Dalo 2013 says:

        🙂 Maybe ~ ha, ha I try to hold onto youth. I do like your “giving in” to how you feel and putting that into perspective with the life around you. I am dialing back on my commitments, and while it is a bit uncomfortable at times (the stress that I am not doing enough), the additional time to contemplate and take in the small things of life really does at the core make me happy. Wishing you the best Helen!

        Liked by 1 person

  9. You’ve expressed your discovery about living in the moment with grace. Congratulations and keep exploring who you are and how you want to live each moment of each day.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Sue says:

    After reading this I have so much to say I could make it a blog post. :). I will shorten it by just saying I understand and agree. But I also love reading your stories- you write and photograph with your heart and I have been blessed by each of your posts. I will look forward to them doubly now, as they will be fewer.

    Love the photo of the mountains in color as much as in b&w. The color one is also monochromatic – perhaps a good entry to this weeks Daily Post? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Sue. It brings a smile to my face when I see someone who truly understood what I meant. I’ve attended many family or friends gatherings and didn’t see or hear what was going on when I was there because I was busy looking for good photos. No more. I want to be there! Taking photos will not be my top priority anymore. I am happy about that 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  11. treerabold says:

    Good for you Helen!
    Though I will miss your regular presence here I certainly understand. I went into auto-mode for sometime. Just racing to get my daily photo posted. Just in the last few weeks I’ve come back to life and have started enjoying my blog again…not just “doing” it.
    The most important thing in each life is to live it in a way that has meaning for you!
    Enjoy this new stage in your life….and know that whether you type another word or take another picture…you have touched many lives here in this stage of your life!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Tree. I guess when you get old and realize that you don’t live forever, you do have a new set of priorities 😉 I do like this stage of my life. If I can get rid of the back ache, knee pains, and remember everything I should remember, this would be my favorite time of my life!!! 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I look forward to whatever time you do devote to the blog!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. restlessjo says:

    Good to hear from you, Helen. Sometimes when I’ve been away from the blog I can’t wait to share but it’s great to hang on to the things that bring you peace and happiness too. I’m always planning to make an e-book or photo journal but the blog eats time so I fully understand and applaud. Love that photo with the suspended children! 🙂 Thanks for your visit.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Jo. That’s it! I wonder if it is a right thing for me to say that “please do the ebook” even if you have to skip blogging for a while. It all depends on how young you are, I guess. I am getting old. I need to get some projects done (like several photobooks for my daughter). I completed one – yeah! 😉

      Like

  14. carol1945 says:

    You captured in beautiful words exactly how I feel. Your analogy of the train is just perfect. I was blogging so consistently for awhile and when I look at my past blogs, I think, “was that me? who am I?” These stages of life are so mysterious. I am grateful for the perspective of my seventy years, yet I am not happy with some of the bodily changes that accompany them. My mother is going to be 98, and I see the future. My focus now is fixing my small garden so that I can be in it without hurting my knees or hands. I already had a carpenter change the long stairway down to it, and now I am interviewing people who do landscaping. Your blog has been one I have identified with the most, yet I have not been reading it, I have been sleeping, too. I help with the care of three precious grandchildren under the age of five and with the care of my amazing mother. I am grateful that I can now look at your older photos and posts. I want you to know your writing and photos have meant so much to me, even when I have not been able to get to the computer. I look forward to any future posts that you are called to do.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Carol, you are a wonderful friend! I always love hearing from you. We recently have someone doing our landscaping too! I am so happy to see flowers in my yard. Every morning, the first thing I do is to look out of my window to see flowers! I am so happy!
      I think blogging is good. It gives me a way to share my thoughts, stories, photos. I really enjoy it. I also like to read other people’s blogs, but it takes so much time. I haven’t figured out a right way to do all these. In the mean time, I would simply enjoy living and I love it so far. 😉 Take care, my dear friend.
      By the way, I wish my mom is still here. Please give your mom a hug for me.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Robin says:

    The photos are beautiful! I often struggle with what I should do and what I want to do. I get frustrated if I am not writing, but my life keeps me busy and I find that when I sit down to write, I have nothing to say these days. Enjoy living your life 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • carol1945 says:

      Robin, I know what you mean. now that I am older, I do not have that angst that caused me to write a lot.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Robin. I have a feeling that you are much younger than me 😉 When I was younger, I, too, struggled with what I should do and what I want to do like you do. Now I am older, I don’t worry about a lot of things. It’s either I do it my way now or I will never have a chance to do it my way. And the choice became easy.
      Don’t age too fast though. 😉 Each life stage has its own purpose and fun. Enjoy it.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. neihtn2012 says:

    Don’t worry about anything here. Live your life the way you feel like living it. In the end, that’s all that matters anyway.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Hien, from the bottom of my heart. I am happier, healthier and feeling more peaceful. What more can I ask? 😉 (I have a feeling that either you are already living the way you feel like living it or heading that way. I can feel that positive and tranquil energy from reading your blog.)
      Have a wonderful day!

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Sue Slaght says:

    I read with interest your evolution and appreciate your honesty. I recently wrote a post called ‘Where Do Blogs Go When They Die?’ I have found in the past two years so many have just disappeared and one so left wondering what ever happened. Life is a gift and a short one and i do very much think one has to be happy and really ask oneself if what they are doing is bringing joy. Good for your to take the time to reflect and kind of you to let readers know.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Helen C says:

      Thanks, Sue. Blogging has helped me in many ways: the friendships I have gained, the confidence, the enjoyment… I was a happy blogger and I am still one. Unfortunately, at this age (I thought I am still quite young 😉 , it seems like I can only focus on one thing at a time. And I have some project I have to finish if I don’t want to have any regret at the end. (Actually, now that I have made one photobook for my daughter, I feel more relived and ready for my next post 😉
      I have missed several of your posts. Now that I’ve changed the setting to notify me when you have a new post, I hope I won’t miss any from now on. I really enjoy reading your blog!
      Take care.

      Liked by 1 person

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