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A Surprise Gift In The Mail September 21, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Art & Photography, Blogging, Gratitude.
36 comments

Goofy-SurprisedI got a surprise gift in the mail today . . . from a blogging buddy!

Not just any blogging buddy . . . a blogging buddy who visited us in Florida last winter and saw, through her own eyes, my love affair with all things Z~E~B~R~A!

(And all things C~H~O~C~O~L~A~T~E.) 

I opened the package and spied ZEBRA Marshmallows drizzled in CHOCOLATE!

But it gets better . . . she also enclosed one of her gorgeous photographs of purple coneflowers being visited by a delicate yellow and black butterfly

She sure fit a heaping helping of happiness in that  surprise package!

Thanks, Jeanne!

Zebras rock . . .

You do too!

S’More, anyone? 

Drama! Drama! (Maggie Madly Writing) September 21, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Blogging, Humor, Mindfulness, People.
28 comments
696px-Hey.diddle.diddle

Wikipedia ~ Hey Diddle Diddle (in Public Domain)

Are you in a perpetual state of heightened alert?

Do you find it necessary to share every pebble in your path with other sojourners?

Do you create mountains out of mole hills?

Are you constantly inviting others to make YOUR problem THEIR problem?

Do you feel that others should stop what they are doing to listen to your latest tale of woe?

If so . . . this post is for you!

The Drama! The Drama! I’m addicted to drama. I don’t like to create drama (except in fiction), but watching it and reading about it is enough to keep me very entertained… and it gives me a lot of ideas.

Urban Dictionary defines “drama” as: A way of relating to the world in which a person consistently overreacts to or greatly exaggerates the importance of benign events.

Typically “drama” is used by people who are chronically bored or those who seek attention.

People who engage in “drama” will usually attempt to drag other people into their dramatic state, as a way of gaining attention or making their own lives more exciting.

Common warning signs/ risk factors of drama or a dramatic person are:  … Read More

via Maggie Madly Writing

170px-alice_par_john_tenniel_30I don’t enjoy being manipulated.

When I see bloggers over-react to minor set-backs,  recounting  each in excruciating detail to gain sympathy and support from passers-by on an too frequent-basis . . . I head straight for the exit sign.

If I want to watch Drama Queens in action, I’ll turn on Reality TV.

How about you?   Do you ever tire of perpetual “drama queens” who insist on  making their problems your problem?

Why do they do it?

Is it a narcissistic desire to be the center of attention?  Or the mundane nature of their existence that causes them to inflate minor problems into “matters of life or death”?

Evil QueenOr is it “the mirror on the wall” that makes them so “needy”?

Related post:  7 Reasons to Press “Unsubscribe

Quote to Ponder:  When we have conquered the enemy within, there are no enemies left to conquer. 

Sabbatical Bliss September 21, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Art & Photography, Gratitude, Nature, Poetry.
12 comments

vanarsdel8Happily, we go
nowhere and do nothing that
matters in the least

Palm fronds sway, stirred by
the slightest breeze, as we plant
our feet in the sand

A day of no note,
no remembrance, no rhyme ~ the
moments slip away

Pelicans convene,
a circle of contentment,
amid fishing lures

Gentle giants float
past the wooden fishing pier
searching for a snack

Delight filled dolphins
Dive beneath the currents and
Leap high o’er the waves

A tropical cruise
beside coastal cays reminds
me that I am home

Flowing through the day
No reason to watch the clock
Sabbatical Bliss

Aah . . . that’s better!

* * * * *

Artwork by Maitte Van Arsdel  available at Island Gallery West.

Sailing The Maine Coast September 21, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Nature, Sustainable Living, Travel & Leisure.
48 comments
English: Mercantile

English: Mercantile (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For our 20th Wedding Anniversary, we decided to cruise the Maine coast for a few days before heading to Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park.

As we researched, we learned that the Maine Windjammer Association includes 13 traditional sailing vessels in its fleet.

The windjammers range in length from 46 to 132 feet, and accommodate 6-40 guests.  We selected the Mercantile (pictured above):

The 78′ Mercantile was built in Little Deer Isle, Maine in 1916 to carry salt fish, barrel staves, and firewood. The Mercantile became a cruise schooner in 1942 under the ownership of Frank Swift, the founder of the Maine windjammer trade. Guests: 29.

The largest boat, The Victory Chimes, is featured on the Maine quarter:

Built in 1900 in Bethel, Delaware to carry lumber up and down the shallow bays and rivers of the Chesapeake, the 132′ schooner Victory Chimes is the last three masted schooner on the East coast, and the largest passenger sailing vessel under U.S. flag. Guests: 40.

Riding the wind along the rocky coastline provides an eco-friendly way to enjoy spectacular scenery as well as the opportunity to spot ospreys, eagles, terns, and puffins from the decks.

The schooners also offer delicious meals prepared on board ~ from blueberry pancakes in the morning to sunset lobster bakes.  That’s Anna (above), the cook on our cruise, who made vegetarian versions of everything for us.


Except the lobster . . . which we ate the night of the Schooner Gam while rafted up to several other Windjammers in the fleet.

Meals are served buffet style on deck, weather permitting, starting with a before breakfast snack of fresh-baked blueberry muffins or coffee cake and ending with a sweet treat after dinner.

Between meals, guests kick back and relax . . . or help the crew hoist the sails.

The first day out (mid-June), we froze . . . despite thick layers of  turtleneck, sweatshirt, wool sweater, jacket, hat, scarf and mittens.

Every twenty minutes, I’d head  down to the galley to warm my bones beside the welcoming wood stove used to prepare all meals.

We had breakfast, lunch, and dinner  below decks that day, with choppy seas and swells tossing us around as we tried to carry bowls of piping hot chili from stove to table without sloshing it over board (or bowl).

No mean feat on wobbly sea legs. 

The second day, the sun joined us and we peeled the layers off . . . down to short sleeves and bare feet.

 As did the captain and crew.

Aah . . . that’s better!

For more information:  Sail Maine Coast

For more photos:  Maine Windjammer Cruises ~ Photo Gallery

Related posts:  Brave New Adventures * Revel in Uncertainty * Ascertaining Clarity * A Passage To Peace ~ Sailing the Lorenda (Souldipper) * Afternoon Delight (Flying G’ma’s Blog)