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“We are told to let our light shine, and if it does, we won’t need to tell anybody it does.  Lighthouses don’t fire cannons to call attention to their shining – they just shine.”  Dwight L. Moody

Lighthouses are one of my very favorite places to visit.  

There is just something about this lone sentry sitting on it’s rocky promontory, strong, silent and steady – shining a light far out to sea to steer ships clear of the dangerous rocky shores.

This one sits on the Oregon Coastline – the Umpqua Lighthouse.  It has been raining all day, and I captured this shot just before dusk.  It’s completely overcast, so no chance of a sunset today.  

Let YOUR light shine on!

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“It’s ironic, but until you can free those final monsters within the jungle of yourself, your life, your soul is up for grabs.”  Rona Barrett

Our second to last day here on this beautiful paradise found us walking through the Limahuli Botanical Gardens on the North Shore of Kauai.   These gardens are built upon an ancient Hawaiian community.  They’ve done an amazing job preserving and showcasing many of the indigenous plant species, as well as many others that were introduced over the years.  

The tour today was self guided – which meant we took four hours to go about a mile!  It’s a nice wandering trail that is a nice hike up the mountain to a beautiful vista of the ocean, and then a nice meandering path back down to the bottom.  It was completely different from the tour we took the other day at Kauai Botanical Gardens, and very well worth our effort.  We took tons and tons of photos.  

I’ll be posting a few of the photos on my other blog: Me’n My D800e.  

The weather co-operated as well . . . it was windy but didn’t rain on us once.  At least not until we arrived back at the Villa’s.

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“Life is full of beauty.  Notice it.  Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces.  Smell the rain, and feel the wind.  Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.”  Ashley Smith

It’s yet another windy, rainy day here on Kauai’s beautiful North Shore.  I feel like a stuck record!  We headed out for a tour of a local Botanical Garden.  It’s a privately run enterprise just a short distance from where we are staying in Princeville.   We took the 3 hour guided tour (highly recommended!) which included tastings of many of the local fruits, as well as a very interesting Chocolate tasting and presentation.  Despite the downpours that happened frequently during the tour – we really enjoyed ourselves and learned about the local fauna.  

My husband and I lagged behind the group most of the time as we stopped to take many photo’s of the beautiful plant life.  

I think we look a little soggy here in this shot.  Luckily, umbrella’s were provided but we still got wet!  

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“Fear less, hope more, eat less, chew more, whine less, breathe more, talk less, say more, hate less, love more, and good things will be yours.”  Swedish Proverb

We had great plans today to tour the McBride Botanical Gardens in Poipu, Kauai.  We woke up to dark, stormy skies.  It had stormed all night long with stretches of heavy rain.  We hoped that perhaps it was a bit calmer and clearer on the south part of the Island, as it so often can be.  However when we arrived at the Gardens, the tours had been closed due to wind gusts up to 50mph.  

Instead, we drove around to a few spots that we’d visited before.  

My shot for today is at the Spouting Horn.  The surf is quite high right now so the Spouting Horn was giving off a good display.  I decided to get away from the crowds at the lookout, and walked down around the end of the fence and on to the lava rocks to get this better vantage point.  

The sun even came out for a few minutes!  

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“Learn from the past, set vivid, detailed goals for the future, and live in the only moment of time over which you have any control: now.”  Denis Waitley

I took this shot from the beach at Hanalei Pier as the sun was setting over the Bali Hai Mountains (taken from the movie South Pacific which was filmed just north of here).  Such a beautiful and serene shot.  I had been playing around most of the afternoon with slow shutter speed shots under the pier.  When I finally popped out to see what Glen was up to – this is the scene I captured.  

Kind of takes your breath away eh?  And gives a person pause to think about where you are in life, where you’ve come from, where you are going . . . I have huge respect for the fact that the answer to those questions is different for each and every one of us.  For me what I know for sure is that every experience I’ve had in my life has created the person I am today.  

I am grateful for every one of those moments, good or bad.  I am determined going forward that in my experience of life . . . I am leaving positive footprints for others to follow, and leaving a trail of positive energy for others to be inspired as well.  

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“Sensual pleasures have the fleeting brilliance of a comet; a happy marriage has the tranquility of a lovely sunset.”

I love this particular photo because, as the above quote states, a happy marriage has the tranquility of a lovely sunset.  I feel like that is where we are in our relationship these days – tranquil and happy.  Not to say that we don’t have a few issues crop up now and then, but we know it’s safe to work through the issues without worry that one of us is going to walk away.  

I love the feeling of walking hand in hand, side by side, with my best friend – exploring, adventuring, loving, living and sharing.  

This photo was taken at sunset on Ke’e Beach at The End of The Road, Kauai, HI.

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“Lumahai Beach, or South Pacific Beach . . . This beach was made famous by the movie South Pacific where Mitzi Gaynor “washed that man right out of her hair”!” www.hawaiianweb,com

We’ve arrived at our vacation destination for the next 25 days – Kauai, Hi.  The next few days will be settle in time . . . taking it easy and getting adjusted to the two hour time change.  (We’re two hours behind the West Coast).  This beach is one of our favorite hangouts on the North Shore – one of many!  We will be visiting and discovering many more I hope!  

Ahhhh . . . time for a Mai Tai! 

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“If there were in the world today any large number of people who desired their own happiness more than they desired the unhappiness of others, we could have a paradise in a few years.”  Bertrand Russell

IKR?  Why do we waste so much energy “hating” rather than loving??  It’s so exhausting!  If I don’t like or don’t agree with someone’s position or behavior  I just choose to not associate with them.  I don’t wish them ill will.  Where does that get you?  I feel sad for the person who chooses to live in negativity, and I certainly find myself there from time to time.  However, I believe that if that’s where I choose to be – in the negative – then that’s what I’m going to attract in to my experience of life.  Fortunately, I can choose to walk away , or work through it, when I see it coming!

We arrived in Paradise today.  Kauai, HI is my version of Paradise anyway.  I just love it here . . . in the span of an hour you can go from the warm southern climes with broad sweeping beaches and resort areas, to the northern lush tropical side with more rugged, less populated beaches and wild volcanic shores.  We are attracted to the Northern Shores with it’s rugged and less traveled vistas.  We’re lucky to have the opportunity to spend almost a month here this year.  We are able to work from a distance, which really helps!  We’re getting to the point that it’s really tough to come over for just a week.  By time we get settled in, it’s time to go home!  We’ve seen alot of the Island already, but I love to come back and see if we can find new gems to explore.  Geo-caching is a favorite pass time – we’ve found many secluded, out of the way spots doing this.  And of course – with my new photography gear and increasing knowledge  . . . I hope to be posting some pretty awesome shots over the next few weeks.  

It’s really tough to be negative here!

Stay tuned . . . 

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“One time I saw a tiny Joshua tree sapling growing not too far from the old tree. I wanted to dig it up and replant it near our house. I told Mom that I would protect it from the wind and water it every day so that it could grow nice and tall and straight. Mom frowned at me. “You’d be destroying what makes it special,” she said. “It’s the Joshua tree’s struggle that gives it its beauty.”   Jeannette Walls, The Glass Castle 

Today we’re on the way back to SF Bay Area after a truly amazing Meetup with my fellow 365’ers.  On our drive to Vegas, I was quite taken with the Joshua Trees all along the Mojave Desert stretches.  I decided that I had to take my 365 Photo with one of these beautiful creatures.  The average “tree” we saw was less than a few feet tall.  This was one of the biggest we saw from the road.  There were a few massive ones that we could not get close to because of fences etc.  

Truly breathtaking that something like this can survive for hundreds of years in the dry hot desert . . . 

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“Oh how we love pumpkin season.  You did know this gourd-ish squash has it’s own season, right?  Winter, Spring, Summer, Pumpkin . . . We anxiously anticipate it every year.”  Unknown

Today was Pumpkin Patch day.  My Daughter, Grand Daughter and Great Nephew and I spent a few hours enjoying a local farm with tons of activities for kids during this exciting time of the year.  From the Pumpkin Patch itself, to a tractor ride, huge Bouncy Pillow, Hay rides, goats, rabbits and chickens . . . corn maze . . . the kids were so excited and on the run the whole time.  I managed to corral everyone for this picture at the end before we left.  

Great fall fun!

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