Sunday, November 30, 2008

A Bumper Sticker That Tells It Like It Is, So We Can Enjoy Some Random Acts Of Kindness-- Tis' The Season!

One Laptop Per Child-- A Technology Encounter Of An Inspiring Kind*

My husband & I stopped in Putnam before going home last night, we wanted to see our friend Anthony's exhibit at The Silver Circle Studio, which we anticipated with great enjoyment.  In between the viewing of this eye filling exhibit, I knew at first glance that I needed a coffee, as there was a lot to take in & I didn't want to rush through it.  Soo where do we go-- well that was easy, right next door is my favorite coffee shop Victoria Station, with it's hand hewed copper counter that serves up gourmet coffees, fresh baked biscotti, muffins & more.

Victoria Station is furnished with colorful old over stuffed antique type furniture with the unstated invitation to "tarry awhile", which is what one does when they stop in.  During last night's coffee break we met this interesting gentleman who was working away on one of the smallest most colorful & cutest computers I've ever seen!  Not only was he most agreeable & welcoming in answering all of our questions regarding his computer use, but told us about the initiative-- "One Laptop Per Child" which he is very involved with.  I told him I had heard of that program on PBS's News Hour some months ago & my husband, the avid reader of our Mr. & Mrs. team here, shared how he had read about the program maybe a year ago or so.  Andrew said the program which originates out of MIT in the Boston area works to put computers in the hands of children in underdeveloped countries, that everything about the OLPC computer was designed with the child in mind, such as the child sized mini keyboard, & the ability of the computer to link with other same computers in the area to form a power source of relay so the user can email & communicate with one another even without an internet server being available.  We were told the batteries last 5 hours, & the computer has the capacity to download & hold numerous books.  A child in a country that has a lack of books in print can still have access to all that is digitalized on the world library which is now in the public domain. What a phenomenal way to educate, learn & grow for the children of the world.  Eleanor Roosevelt--  our Original First Lady of the world, & the voice of the children of the world, would be thrilled!  

It was an absolutely amazing story to hear in detail, & very exciting to learn how Andrew, a teacher at Rectory School in Pomfret is not only spreading the word about this computer project, but is gifting these computers to his young family members, what a way to spread the word!

{The photos that are to be included in this post actually came out better that expected.  Can you find the photo of Mother Lightning's Peace Garden on the OLPC computer screen?}

Humankind's ability to improvise, invent, reinvent & give of themselves without selfishness, greed or corruption-- "That's what it's all about..."                                                                           That reminds me, it's been awhile since this Nana has done the Hokey Pokey with her favorite grandchildren, tis' the season to step out!  

Saturday, November 29, 2008

The Silver Circle Studio*

75 Main Street in downtown Putnam, Ct. is now home to "The Silver Circle Studio".  Putnam has a sweet old time, funky feel, with it's antique shops, wonderful restaurants, river walk, & now a perfectly unique art studio that only a visit downtown can fully describe.   This opening exhibit runs until Dec. 28, so if you're a lover of unique & sometimes prerogative art, do travel to our lovely former mill town which is nestled alongside the beautiful Quinebaug River.

Included in the following photos of this exhibit is Anthony Foronda who was kind enough to pose for a few moments alongside his art work, true, "a picture's worth a thousand words", in art it's the "seeing is believing" that rings most true here. 

{Yes your right, Anthony is  familiar face on this blog as you have seen him from time to time, due to his hard work with the Greater Putnam Interfaith Council, of who's sponsored events my husband & I are so blessed to be a part of, along with many of the other faces you may recognise.  Hem, there's a pattern here... Working together on the various issues of our time is most satisfying, for sure, this garden of peace we sow.}

Friday, November 28, 2008

Coming To The End Of Autumn & Harvest Times's Thanksgiving*

It's been a good holiday season here in this neck of the woods with family & friends.  The seemingly never ending loads of dishes washed dried & put away, only to emerge out of the cabinets again & again--  foods of all it's array being endlessly consumed with calories not always from the protein category.  It's those pies, pie, pie, pie, pies--- goodbye, pies!  Tomorrow once again I restart those daily walks.   

Promoting The Cause Of Peace At The "Interfaith Thanksgiving Service" On 11/26/08, Putnam, Ct.*

It was truly a site to behold, the peoples of the Christian, Unitarian, Jewish, Islamic, Bah'a i', & Catholic faiths--  all of us gathering together to honor our faiths yet acknowledging our interconnectedness in our basic beliefs of God.  Yes, different paths to our belief of God, yet for me no path is more up lifting then the one that allows us to listen to that "still small voice inside" it guides us in--  body, mind & spirit, & brings us to a place of interconnectedness-- a common ground with our fellow human beings.  Life is sweet when we choose to listen, & life is sweet when we choose to help one another, for life is sweet when we choose to share in the bitter & the sweet.  It is during this process of a lifetime, choosing to keep our hearts open, when we feel our spirits soar.  The "dove of peace" from the ancient time of Noah, a time before print--  God's symbol to the world, multitudes have embraced this symbol as we've traveled to this computer age.  

May we "continue to continue"--  to put aside the differences that divide, & instead embrace these differences with acceptance, the love in our hearts-- when we do that the beauty of love is far more obvious than words, as we in spirit connect & soar with the delicately beautiful dove of peace.   


{In one of the included photos you will see a painted work on cedar with acrylic of mixed media, on it is the word *ahava, which is a Hebrew word for love.  This work was created in the Jewish year 5755, in loving memory of my father, of who "Ahava Art Works" was created. Mother Lightning's Peace Garden is a production of "Ahava Art Works", which is a symbol of the healing heart.}

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Morning Has Broken In The Peace Garden*

 Just a few minutes ago as I was sipping my coffee & gazing out the kitchen window, the sunlight was gleaming & the garden had a wonderful glow.  Do I go out there?   I've all ready photographed many of these scenes numerous times, though I never tire of them knowing we are so very Blessed to be living in this wonderful nature preserve.  So there I went putting my warmest winter coat on over my grungy bathrobe, sandals on my feet & feeling the sensation of an icy frost as I stepped out onto this morning's slippery ground.  I was out there clicking away for ten minutes or so, the beauty of the autumn colors gently reminded me of why I chose to step outside.  I am ever grateful.  

Today two of our sons will be traveling from a far, so God willing we will all be together again for yet another Thanksgiving.  May the health & travels of our loved ones be Blessed as we welcome anew this true American Holiday, knowing all too well that as a people our Native Americans have the history of an oppression from a non respectful government.  I will remain hopeful that now in this 2st century "We the People" will continue to insist & work for equality & change in this great land that all of God's children share in, & remembering to respect & care for Mother Earth, for without that we will be no more. 


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Some Stops Along The Way To This Year's Thanksgiving*

This time of the year from Thanksgiving all the way into January always represents a lot of work to be done. We all know what it consists of--  for me it's the never ending house cleaning that presents a drag, the planning, the cooking & the baking are fun, the food shopping part well that's another experience in our food gathering quest.... stopping by our local orchard is a fine reprieve from the hectic crowds, it lightens my heart & helps to put it all in perceptive.  I hope you enjoy the views.

{The photos from this section were taken at Lapsley Orchard, Pomfret/Brooklyn, Ct.}

Monday, November 24, 2008

Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow, Cherishing A Symbol Of Friendship-- The Yellow Rose*

When I was a wee Brownie & later a Girl Scout-- "Make new friends & keep the old, one is Silver & the other's Gold...", was a favorite song.  Here we are now sooo many decades later, former mini skirted boomers of the 21st Century-- The song still rings true.

This past Saturday a dear friend from those many years ago hosted a quaint "Yellow Rose Brunch" at her family's former home in the Bruce Springsteen kind of town where we all grew up, as that Master Charge commercial would say-- It was "Priceless"!                                               The three of us all moms now, & two of us even grandmothers, were amazed that we were finally able to set aside a mutual date with all the busyness that we all get so caught up with for a Thanksgiving Holiday.

From High School to--  Life's School.  The present, back to the past, ever fleeting like a yellow rose, our friendships are beautiful, delicate & heart warming.  My friends from High School have all experienced the different & varied chapters & textures that life brings us all, but with it a renewed sense of who we were & who we've become, for till the end of our time here on this earth we are always becoming....

This special time of our teen aged years has rooted us to a "Historic Time & Place" in our garden of life--  "Friendship is the Wine of Life."  I thank God for my precious friends of that delicate era & I so thank *them, for we were *always there for one another--  truly in sickness & in health & we made it through it all, just as I thank God for the family & friends I am involved with in this era.  
                                                                                                                                                           *Aristotle taught--  "Life without friends would be very, very sparse indeed."   I more than agree!  

Friday, November 21, 2008

Getting Ready For An Interfaith Thanksgiving With *Peace, *Love & *Understanding--

How fast a year goes by--  From our neck of the woods to yours, a most Healthy & Peaceful Thanksgiving season to You & All who are dear in your hearts.