Shine the Divine:

Creativity IS a Spiritual Practice

When we see through our hearts, we recognize that every single one of us is infused with creativity. Divine Sparks are embedded in everyone and everything. It's up to us to be courageous, to look and listen deeply, to find the sparks, gather and release them back into the universe, transformed into something new. Join me as we wake up to the sacred-ordinary blessings waiting to greet us each and every day.

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Saturday, August 23, 2014

I Heart Macro 67
















A jumble of images, now remembrances of falling waters. Magnificent, thunderous streaming down sun-gold cliffs, ah but we went on further than we had originally planned. It was getting colder as clouds rolled in, following the suggestions of other travelers on a path they had traversed before, we kept going. Until eventually we realized we were not the seasoned hikers they surely must have been, there was no way we could make it across the ridge, tired as we already were. So then and there we turned back down the slick muddy trail. Reminding one another “things don't generally go the way you expect them to” followed by: “how boring life would be without surprises!”

A sudden sandy slide down a boulder took a bite from my knee, very near the end of the hike. The blood trickling down didn’t bother me then, because both knees were already seizing up in pain as muscles contracted, tight elastic vices binding and squeezing, like never before. I'm not sure it was MS related or not, it doesn't really matter. And although Gordon's pack was too heavy and felt burdensome on his shoulders and even his legs, (we did lighten it some for the rest of the week) it was full of exactly what we needed and others too, it turned out, for we helped an older woman with her own knee problems along the way with our first aid gear. They were not as prepared for the unexpected as we were with our unwieldy pack. Our intention of an easy four-hour warm up hike turned into seven.  Day one was grueling, yet beyond beautiful, this carried us along.

We felt frustration. We practiced patience. We opened our hearts in compassion for these bodies, strong yet fragile, not quite up to climbing as high or as much as we'd hoped. Yes, great compassion and joy in the little things. We had to go slower, take gentler hikes on the following days. We never reached a summit this year, and that is fine, it didn’t feel important. There were tiny bright mushrooms, and heart shaped lichens clumped on the softest green moss fronds. A grasshopper posed while rain filled clouds hung heavy above. We found a field of painted wildflowers, tall gaillardia (I think or maybe coneflowers can anyone tell me?), tamped down, by a moose it appeared. On another day we sat by calm waters listening to the gentle flow, cool air on our bare skin, my knees were still too sore to go far. A different lazy afternoon after a short traipse through the woods up an incline that was pocked with ground bee nests, we decided to visit a few small art galleries tucked in a village we’d not been to before, enjoyed a long lunch and then sweeping views of Mt. Chocorua across the lake, a mountain we had climbed, crossing the ridge several years ago. Sunsets each evening and one morning I watched it rise from our bedroom window, staying tucked in for two hours more beneath the covers, grateful for this life, for my husband breathing deeply, still sleeping beside me.  This was not the intense hiking trip we had imagined; it was exactly as it was meant to be. 


On Tuesday, the Hebrew month of Elul begins. This is time to take an honest look at our lives; investigate what is true? What is important? How can I be kinder, soften and open my heart wider, act with more compassion? Nature and my body, as they often do, have me prepared to engage with this deep soul-work. So I offer a jumble of images, now remembrances, to you this week.






a grasshopper paused
we could all taste rain coming

shelter seemed pointless

why not enjoy the cool drops
drink in life's blessings
exactly as they're offered



Welcome to Week Sixty-Seven of
I Heart Macro

"Pure awareness transcends thinking... It allows you to look at the world once again with open eyes. And when you do so, a sense of wonder and quiet contentment begins to reappear in your life."~Mark Williams and Danny Pennman, from Mindfulness An Eight-Week Plan For Finding Peace In A Frantic World


It is time for YOU to share the love up-close with YOUR

I Heart Macro offerings!


Thank you to all 77 participants last week, I think that is the most people joining in so far, wow! I hope to visit and see your beautiful photos this week now that I am home.

Shine the Divine



Enjoy slowing down with your camera, paying full attention, observing beauty and curiosities many people pass right by. Your generosity of spirit and keen eyes may open the door to miniscule miracles and mirth others would not have access to otherwise. Feel free to include poetry, prose and thoughts your macro photo or series inspire(s) in you. Writing is completely optional for participation. Straight out of the camera (SOC), edited, color, black and white; anything goes as long as you bring the viewer near to whatever it is that drew your heart's attention and "woke you up" to full presence.

Please link back to my blog either using the button provided or by linking the words "I Heart Macro" back to my blog with this link: shinethedivinecreativityisaspiritualpractice.com. By sharing the link, visitors to your blog will learn about this meme and have a chance to participate as well if they so choose. 

Visit each other...

S  p  r  e  a  d  the  LOVE. Thanks :-)



linking to:
makro montag

Saturday, August 16, 2014

I Heart Macro 66



Observing the remarkable beauty of the world reflected in raindrops, these are moments that make my heart sing.

I'm going hiking so will be offline and totally present to nature starting Sunday. These lowland photos from last week are from the bog near our home. As much as I love that magical place, I am looking forward to breathing in the mountain air. I am so grateful that after a rough start this summer I’ll be able to hike and scramble as I did last year.

Hiking update:
 We hiked a "moderate" hike yesterday, that ended up being harder than expected… fatigue took over at the end and my knees seized up, but I was more concerned about an older lady who we helped with an ace bandage, she was in pretty bad shape. We found a park worker on the way toward the parking lot and he went back up to help her out and call fish and game. It reminded me of a story a 14 year old student shared in an art class I was teaching years ago about how a single butterfly's wing movements can change the weather… how we as individuals through small acts of kindness can be a force of goodness and change. I'm sore today and we'll do something easier (ha, ha) but I am not missing a minute of this beautiful opportunity to hike and love the great outdoors. As I was coming down the mountain and my knees were searing with pain, I just kept saying to myself, I am Sally Siegel's daughter, I am strong and courageous, I can do anything! (My Mom is the most courageous, push through, make your life meaningful, live and love each moment, person I know!) Incidentally, the woman on the trail who was injured was also named Sally and had red hair like my mother. I prayed and practice metta for her and everyone still up on the mountain, it was very slippery. Offering prayers of wellbeing for others helped me to get to the bottom. It is amazing how loving thoughts for others take your mind of your own suffering and expands your heart, eases your breath, relaxes muscles, gives strength. Faith is a powerful force.


Welcome to Week Sixty-Six of
I Heart Macro

"Pure awareness transcends thinking... It allows you to look at the world once again with open eyes. And when you do so, a sense of wonder and quiet contentment begins to reappear in your life."~Mark Williams and Danny Pennman, from Mindfulness An Eight-Week Plan For Finding Peace In A Frantic World

It is time for YOU to share the love up-close with YOUR

I Heart Macro offerings!



Shine the Divine



Enjoy slowing down with your camera, paying full attention, observing beauty and curiosities many people pass right by. Your generosity of spirit and keen eyes may open the door to miniscule miracles and mirth others would not have access to otherwise. Feel free to include poetry, prose and thoughts your macro photo or series inspire(s) in you. Writing is completely optional for participation. Straight out of the camera (SOC), edited, color, black and white; anything goes as long as you bring the viewer near to whatever it is that drew your heart's attention and "woke you up" to full presence.

Please link back to my blog either using the button provided or by linking the words "I Heart Macro" back to my blog with this link: shinethedivinecreativityisaspiritualpractice.com. By sharing the link, visitors to your blog will learn about this meme and have a chance to participate as well if they so choose. 

Visit each other...

S  p  r  e  a  d  the  LOVE. Thanks :-)



linking to:
nature notes
makro montag

Saturday, August 9, 2014

I Heart Macro 65


It is rare for me to see monarchs where I live, I can't remember the last time I saw one. This was a wonderful surprise. She was shy so I had to cautiously step around the garden with the camera before I was able to take only two good photos of her. I feel like this rare visitor to my garden is a symbol of hope, she represents the possibility of change, the transformation of hearts in conflict within, among and between individuals, communities, humans around this beautiful planet we are blessed to be able to share. My heart is breaking for the deep suffering and so many terrible tragedies around the world. It could be different, it should be different.





we share the same blood
turned river running through streets
lay down the weapons

spread your arms to form shelter
feed our children love's nectar


praying for healing
the possibility of
metamorphosis

flowers weeping with mothers
may our children know true peace








trees reach towards ever changing skies
rooted in time as it passes
swaying to the rhythm of hope
as it rises falls rises again
listen to their sighs
breathing into us
they know we are all connected
let us learn from our ancient teachers
how to be wise


Welcome to Week Sixty-Five of
I Heart Macro

"Pure awareness transcends thinking... It allows you to look at the world once again with open eyes. And when you do so, a sense of wonder and quiet contentment begins to reappear in your life."~Mark Williams and Danny Pennman, from Mindfulness An Eight-Week Plan For Finding Peace In A Frantic World

It is time for YOU to share the love up-close with YOUR
I Heart Macro offerings!


Shine the Divine


Enjoy slowing down with your camera, paying full attention, observing beauty and curiosities many people pass right by. Your generosity of spirit and keen eyes may open the door to miniscule miracles and mirth others would not have access to otherwise. Feel free to include poetry, prose and thoughts your macro photo or series inspire(s) in you. Writing is completely optional for participation. Straight out of the camera (SOC), edited, color, black and white; anything goes as long as you bring the viewer near to whatever it is that drew your heart's attention and "woke you up" to full presence.

Please link back to my blog either using the button provided or by linking the words "I Heart Macro" back to my blog with this link: shinethedivinecreativityisaspiritualpractice.com. By sharing the link, visitors to your blog will learn about this meme and have a chance to participate as well if they so choose. 

Visit each other...

S  p  r  e  a  d  the  LOVE. Thanks :-)


linking to:
makro montag
the weekend in black and white
weekend reflections