another world – a Visual Recite

I have added a new category to my blog titled ‘a Visual Recite’.

I have taken many pictures over the years and I share them with you with a recite.

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another world –

When you’re in a fighter jet and there’s a dark layer of clouds with just one blue hole with the sun going through it, you shoot for that hole. You go vertical into the light, and suddenly, instead of gray and dark, it’s light and blue. You are totally connected with the elements. You are in another world.

–          Yves Rossy

Valiant Blogger Award

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Recently my friend and fellow blogger Dolly nominated me for an award.  Thank you Dolly for nominating me for the Valiant Blogger Award; I am deeply honored.

Dolly and I have recently started following each other’s blogs and I feel fortunate our virtual paths have crossed.  Dolly, born in Russia is sharing her recipes on her blog koolkosherkitchen.  Please click her blog site name and visit her blog, you will not be disappointed.

If you visit the Hall of Valor you will find the following about this award –

The Valiant Blogger Award is for the blogger who is brave and courageous.  It is dedicated to someone who, despite being faced with the most difficult obstacles in life, chooses to fight on and never give up.  It is for the lionhearted, one who faces fears and challenges, who has become an inspiration to others along the way. 

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The rules of the award are –

1.Post the award on your blog.

2.Provide a link to the Hall of Valor

3.In 200 words or less, share about the greatest challenge in your life and HOW you got through it.

4.Give one piece of advice to people who are struggling with something in their life.

5.Thank the person who nominated you, and nominate a new blogger for the award.

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Many of you know I am dealing with cancer and most recently had a major surgery to remove organs that cancer had invaded.  After a couple of minor surgeries and chemotherapy last year you would think this is what I would use as my greatest challenge in my life.  But, it is not.

Back in July of last year, I wrote a post ‘Mother Mary‘, in which I wrote the following –

I talked with my mom a couple of weeks ago about this upcoming surgery, the most recent one; and I had told her, I said this is not the end, I feel it, I just know there is more to come.

And I told her also that I will get through it because this is not my greatest battle, my greatest battle has already occurred.  It was that depression, that great depression within me, about me that wanted to bring me down, wanted to end my life, kill me, destroy me – and I battled back, I found the strength and courage and I won that battle.  I overcame that which wanted to beat me down to nothing.

October of last year in my post ‘My Greatest Fight‘, I concluded with the following words –

At times of weakness I remind myself of the inner strength I have and the good mood returns.  As the fight and the battle continue, so does the mood continue to be good; for a good mood is strength to battle any fight.

This may not be my greatest battle; for now, this is my greatest fight.

My advice to everyone; no matter the struggle, battle or fight taking place –

From my post ‘strength‘ –

So, my post is about strength; I think that it is probably in all of us, it is in all of us somewhere.  And when we need it the most, I think we all can reach deep down and grab it and use it and get through any difficult situations we may be going through.  

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The person I wish to nominate does not usually accept awards and she is deserving of many of them.  I am going to nominate her anyway because she is an inspiration to me and has had her share of difficult obstacles in which she never gave up and she overcame.

My nomination is Lynn over at LYNZ REAL COOKING

(Lynn, you are in no way obligated to respond or accept this award.)

Touching your comments

It was January 16th when my 10 ½ hour surgery took place.

I wrote about strength I found within myself in my post ‘strength’.

In that post, I voice recorded thoughts the immediate days’ home after the hospital stay.

Here is another voice recorded thoughts now documented for you and about you –

Write a post about that first night after surgery I was still feeling lots of the anesthesia and under lots of pain medication.  And I remember feeling like I was in your comments.  I was in your comments; almost like I am walking around in your comments, the words you have left me.  Not just the recent comments, but the past weeks and months comments; the encouraging words and the supportive words; the words of love and the words of support and the words of encouragement.  It was as almost as I was walking through these comments from all of you, I was touching them and it was helping me with my strength; it was helping me say you are going to get through this because there are so many other people there – there are so many other people out there who are encouraging you and supporting you and praying for you and thinking about you.  And who are touching you in a way that you are going to succeed and you are going to be strong.  And that is what I was doing; I was walking through your comments; almost like a stage and all your comments are sitting there on this stage in big letters.  And I am walking by and I am actually touching them, touching your actual words and feeling them and experiencing them.  That is the only way I can explain it, that is the only way I can explain this dream or hallucination or whatever it is I was experiencing at the time.  But I really truly felt that, that my friends helped me so much – I really, really do believe that.  I know it took a lot for me to deal with my surgery and the feelings afterwards, but I really truly feel that experience, that hallucination or dream or whatever was a big part that started helping me on a good start, on a good note to start my recovery. 

Thank you for always supporting me and encouraging me through your words and comments.

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strength

Only 3 weeks ago, I had a 10 ½ hour surgery and was in the hospital for 11 days.  During those hospital days, I had very little physical strength and spent most of my time doing nothing except resting and recovering.  Once home in those first few days I felt I needed to document some thoughts that were swirling through my head; they were important to me.  Those first few days back home I spent little time on the computer and so I voice recorded my thoughts.

The following are words I spoke and recorded one of those first few days back home –

So this is a post about strength – strength that I did not know that I had.  I made my 11 day hospital stay; I made it through being positive, being optimistic.  For those first two nights after a very long surgery, for the first night I was awake for a little while, and thinking to myself; I don’t know how I am going to get through this, but then I fell back into a deep sleep.  And the next night, same room and still in the same position because I have not moved I then thought to myself again; I don’t know how I am going to get through this.  But I kept telling myself, I will, I have the strength within me, I have the perseverance and the positiveness that I am going to get through this and I am going to do well during my recovery.  And during the whole recovery for those nights and more after I did that – I did that.  Certainly I had my aches and pains I had to deal with; and pain medications were there and other medications were there to help me along the way and I did what was asked of me and I found the strength in me that I never, ever thought that I had.  Seriously I never thought I had that strength in me.  But it was there, it was waiting to be used during a time when I needed it the most.  So, my post is about strength; I think that it is probably in all of us, it is in all of us somewhere.  And when we need it the most, I think we all can reach deep down and grab it and use it and get through any difficult situations we may be going through. 

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The Potato Eaters

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Image Provided by: commons.wikimedia.org

75 years before I was born – The Potato Eaters creation began and took almost a year to complete.

What does The Potato Eaters have to do with my blog?  Well, some crazy dude decided poor ugly people are great subjects to paint.  Lucky for him, his craziness made for a very creative mind.  Yes, I am referring to Vincent van Gogh.

theguardian.com article ‘New study claims to find genetic link between creativity and mental illness’ includes the following –

The notion of the tortured artist is a stubborn meme. Creativity, it states, is fuelled by the demons that artists wrestle in their darkest hours. The idea is fanciful to many scientists. But a new study claims the link may be well-founded after all, and written into the twisted molecules of our DNA.

mnn.com article ‘Why genius and madness are connected’ includes the following –

Many of history’s most celebrated creative geniuses were mentally ill, from renowned artists Vincent van Gogh and Frida Kahlo to literary giants Virginia Woolf and Edgar Allan Poe. Today, the fabled connection between genius and madness is no longer merely anecdotal. Mounting research shows these two extremes of the human mind really are linked — and scientists are beginning to understand why.

I do not consider myself a very creative person, but yes I do consider myself sometimes to be mentally ill.  The major depression as a young man has left and never to come back again.  I do have my days that I feel ‘down’, but not depressed – though I may say I feel depressed.  I do feel however; I continue to have a mental illness.  I lose control of myself, I am a control freak, I am OCD, ADD, and I feel I have Borderline Personality Disorder.  But am I creative?  I believe that it is within me and I can be.  I may never paint a The Potato Eaters and sculpt a David or compose a Second Symphony, but I have created some awesome Christmas displays consisting of over 26,000 lights synchronize to music.  I have helped in creating some beautiful landscaping and my writing of my blog is decent.

It may be the bit of craziness in me has helped me to be creative.

vangoghgallery.com has the following –

In May of 1890, after a couple of years at the asylum, he seemed much better and went to live in Auvers-sur-Oise under the watchful eye of Dr. Gachet. Two months later, he died from what is believed to have been a self-inflicted gunshot wound “for the good of all.” During his brief career, he did not experience much success, he sold only one painting, lived in poverty, malnourished and overworked.

As a young man I made those attempts to end my life thinking it was “for the good of all”.  I am still here on this earth with a little creativity and a little mental illness.

Will I be well known someday like Vincent van Gogh?  No I do not think so: I have no The Potato Eaters to leave behind.

He makes me want to be the best I can be.

He makes me want to be a better person.  He makes me want to be the best I can be.

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Image Provided by: spearfruit.com

Why is this?

There is an article on the thoughtcatalog.com website that lists signs your relationship is making you a better person and includes the following –

You find yourself making more and more tiny compromises—about which type of movie to watch, or what time to eat dinner—without feeling at all bitter.

Your main need might just be to meet their needs. And why not? You’ve spent enough years focused entirely on number one.

Overwhelmed by gratitude, you catch yourself saying “thank you” with more enthusiasm than necessary—to people who hold open doors, compliment you, or look friendly in general. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

You want to return the Universe’s favor, so you act kindly towards everyone, even not-so-nice strangers. It takes way more than an annoying street performer who gets in your face on the subway or a rude waiter to make you angry.

You’re drunk on Love Kool-Aid and you know it, but you’re not embarrassed. You’re desperate to share the joy running through your veins.

You’re more motivated than ever to exercise and eat healthy because you have more reason than ever to live longer.

Your general outlook is incredibly positive. Bad things definitely happen, but there’s so much good in the world, too. You know this because it led you to your lover.

Really?  That was not quite what I had in mind when writing this post.  For me my relationship is making me a better person because I want to be a better person for him.  He deserves a better person to be in his life to be his partner in life and to be his spouse, his support and his love.  This is why he makes me want to be the best I can be – to be a better person.  I know relationships are about 2 people and yes, I am a control freak at times and make it all about me.  I am working on this, because it is not always about me or should not always be about me.  I am working on this, because I want to be a better person for him.

He makes me want to be the best I can be.

Why is this?

Could it be love, devotion, dedication or commitment?  Well it may be a little of all – whatever the reason, it is good for me.  It is good for me because I want to be good for him.  I want to be the best for him, a better person; the best I can be.

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Image Provided by: spearfruit.com

He makes me want to be the best I can be and I am a better person because of him.

A Twin and A Look-Alike

livescience.com has an article ‘Does Everyone Have a Look-Alike?’ that starts with the following –

We’ve all done a double take when mistaking a random person on the street for someone we know or know of, like the celebrity look-alikes Will Ferrell and Chad Smith – the actor and the Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer, respectively.  But does everyone have a doppelganger?  There’s a fairly decent chance of it, actually, thanks to the limited number of genes that influence facial features.

I have a twin in the world and I have a look-alike in the world.  My twin does not look like me and my look-alike is not my twin.  You see, I am a twin – I have a twin sister and we are fraternal twins and we look nothing alike.  I guess if you looked hard enough there may be some resemblances in our facial features, but her being female and me being male – there are more differences than similarities.

My look-alike, I guess looks very similar to me – I have never seen him, but my mom has.  At a time when I lived in Dallas, many years ago my mom worked at a bank in the small city I grew up in.  She told me a story about one day that she was working and she saw me.  She approached me and asked what I was doing in town and why I did not let her know.  Well, it wasn’t me, but my look-alike fooled my own mom!

Several years ago at a gym I am a member of, in the afternoons upon working out there – I would see my brother.  Well, it was not brother, it was his look-alike.  I am sure I made this guy uncomfortable by staring at him because he looked so much like my brother – it was amazing!

So if there is limited number of genes that influence facial features, and 7.4 billon people in the world, could we have more than one look-alike?

carbonated.tv indicates ‘There Are 7 People In The World Who Look Exactly Like You‘.

wikipedia.org has this definition –

In fiction and folklore, a doppelgänger or doppelga(e)nger (/ˈdɒpᵊlˌɡɛŋə/ or /-ˌɡæŋə/; German: [ˈdɔpəlˌɡɛŋɐ] ( listen), literally “double-goer”) is a look-alike or double of a living person, sometimes portrayed as a paranormal phenomenon, and in some traditions as a harbinger of bad luck. In other traditions and stories, they recognize your ‘double-goer’ as an evil twin.

The word doppelgänger is often used in a more general sense to describe any person who physically or behaviorally resembles another person.

Search the interest and you will find interesting stories of people who have met their doppelganger.  I have not yet, but I think it would be fascinating to do so.  My mother has seen my look-alike and I have seen my brother’s look-alike; my look-alike is not my twin, but I do have a twin that does not look like me.

What about you, do you want to meet your doppelganger?

2 of 3 Day Quote Challenge – Birthday Quote

I am nominated for the Quote Challenge by my friend Lynne over at Lynne’s Recipe Trails

Lynne lives in South Africa and she is a wife, mom, master chef (I think so anyway) and all around wonderful person.  If you have not visited here blog, please do so!

Now for the Rules of the Quote Challenge:

1. Post on three consecutive days

2. Pick one or three quotes per day

3. Challenge three different bloggers per day

4. Thank the blogger who nominated you

I was previously nominated back in November and I decided to have my quotes related to Christmas.  Because there is a very special birthday in a couple of days, this go around my quotes will be related to Birthdays.

I am doing 1 quote per day for the three days.

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Image Provided By: http://www.wishesquotes.com

My nominees for today are –

Koolaidmom over at What’s for Dinner Moms?

Embeecee over at sparksfromacombustiblemind

Lynn over at An Encore Voyage

Thanks again Lynne.

Happy Day Everyone!

spearfruit

Who is spearfruit?  Or maybe the question is what is spearfruit?

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Image Provided by: veja.abril.com.br

It is kind of an odd name for a blog, don’t you think?  It makes perfect sense to me; well that is because I thought of it – I came up with the name.

So to answer the above questions; you know who spearfruit is – it is me – it is Terry.  But what about the question; what is spearfruit?

Here is my thinking when it came to my blog name ‘spearfruit’.  Prior to retiring I worked for many years in the Information Technology industry.  Some of those people are kind of nerdy and think very much outside the box – you have to – to be creative.  Our society gives no second thought to the names ‘Google’, ‘Apple’, ‘Android’, ‘Adobe’, ‘Yahoo’, ‘Amazon’, ‘Yelp’ and the list goes on.  Our society gives no second thought to the names ‘Atari’, ‘Coca Cola’, ‘Dr. Pepper’, ‘Sega’, ‘Sprint’, ‘Starbucks’, and the list goes on.  Information Technology apps, software, everything that runs on computers and smartphones and many other devices have to be upgraded with fixes and improvements. These upgrades for some companies will have names associated to them.  If you have an Android device, your latest release of that operating system is either ‘Lollipop’ or ‘Marshmallow’.  The latest Apple operating system upgrade is ‘El Capitan’.

These names may sound odd to most people, but not to me.  So, spearfruit is not odd to me either.

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Image Provided by: veja.abril.com.br

In 5 days, I will be publishing a post to introduce my husband to you.  The name spearfruit was created by me and relates to him.  I have a pet name for him; no, it is not spearfruit; but spearfruit is the name that came from his pet name.

Here are some hints – see if in the next 5 days you can figure it out:

Breakdown my blog name into 2 words

Find the meaning or history or definition of 1 of those words

For the other word, find the surname that is associated to it

Once you have figured this out, you have found the pet name for my husband.  If you are unable to figure it out – that’s okay, I will reveal it to you in 5 days.

Good luck my friends!

Crystal Ball or Fortune Teller?

Do you ever wish you had a crystal ball?

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Has your future ever been revealed by a fortune teller?

As a young boy I would day dream about the life I wanted, the things I wanted, the ideas and the desires.

A crystal ball would have provided me the future so I would not be moving forward unaware of what that future had planned for me.

A fortune teller would have told me the future and provided me the information early on that would shape me into who I am today.

As a young boy, I would day dream about my life I wanted, my things I wanted, my ideas and my desires.

But sometimes it ends up totally different than what we envisioned.

Most of you know the events of my early life; the major depression, the suicide attempts, the self-abuse, the sexual violations as a child, the marriage, the sons, and the divorce.  Later in my adulthood there are the relationships, the self-identity realization, the therapy, and finding that special someone.  Today, it has been 5 weeks since my surgery to remove a tumor on my bladder.  Yes, my cancer was caught early and yes, it can easily come back again to visit in the future.

As a young boy, my day dreaming never included the events that have occurred in life through today.

As a young boy, my day dreaming never included the things that are in my life today.

As a young boy, my day dreaming never included the ideas and the desires I have in my life today.

If only I had a crystal ball or a fortune teller.

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Image Provided by: freeslots77.com

What I thought I wanted and needed turned out to be totally different in my life today.

I am not living the life I envisioned; my life is better than what I dreamed about when I was a young boy.  Yes, there were events and experiences: hardships and misfortunes – assisting and helping – successes and feats – failures and doubts.  But my life today is not near to what I envisioned as a young boy; it is better than what I ever could have dreamed of.

There is no crystal ball or fortune teller that could have foretold the beautiful life I have today.  I am lucky: I am blessed: I am fortunate.  A person is in my life that I never envisioned.  Soon a world will be in my life I never envisioned.

He and I are retired and we are in the process of downsizing and planning a move to the next location of the next chapter in our lives.  As time proceeds I will reveal more about the move, its location and the plans for our next chapter.

As a young boy I would day dream about the life I wanted, the things I wanted, the ideas and the desires.  My day dreams never included what I have in my life today.

Do you ever wish you had a crystal ball?  Has your future ever been revealed by a fortune teller?