Saturday, February 11, 2012

Joining the Blogging World

Thank you for visiting my blog. The decision to begin this journey was difficult, as beginning anything new usually is. I actually set it up a month ago but have laboured over what my first post would say. I finally decided to "knock it off" and get to it. This is supposed to be fun!

So I'm giving it a go, and if you read this, I welcome your feedback.

I first thought my blog would be a cooking one, because I do love all that's associated with food: selection, preparation, experimentation, sometimes growing it, photographing it and yes, eating it. But my interest are much wider than that and to make food and cooking the focus...well, that might place me under too much pressure because I'm not always in the frame of mind for cooking.

And the same applies to my other interests: I have to go with the flow of what I want to pursue on any particular day. I often accuse myself of being a jack of all trades and a master of none. I wonder, too, what I might have achieved if I'd have concentrated all my energies on one pursuit in life. But no, for me, that would be boring. I love the variety  of walking down a new path each day. But the one thing that always has, always will hold my interest is my devotion to animals. I have owned and loved dogs for more than 40 years and I know of no other interest that consumes me the way my dogs have. I love cats, too, but just happen to be without one right now. That likely will change soon. 

That's Kris at left, and Valerie, right. Both are rescues from the Tennessee Valley Golden Retriever Association. How lucky we are. They are wonderful, wonderful pets. Both were "about 2 years" when we got them -- Val three years ago and Kris two years  this past Christmas. We will have our 3rd anniversary with Val on Feb. 14, three days from now.

So I will be sharing with you some of my interests and passions of life. I particularly like to enrich my daily journey with the writing and wisdom of others. I will be posting my favorite writings, the wisdom  of others that have added a new dimension to my life, enriched it and opened new doors in my mind.

Why the name Halcyon Days?

Halcyon means calm and tranquil, or happy or carefree. It's a word rarely used now apart from in the expression 'halcyon days." Halcyon is the name of a bird in Greek legend and mythology. Halcyon Days are those around the winter solstice when storms never occur, as this is when the halcyon calmed the surface of the sea in order to brood her eggs on a floating nest. In popular use, it means to harken back to an earlier time, remembered as idyllic, whether accurately or not. The meaning in popular culture also refers to calm, peaceful days. The current use of halcyon days tends to be nostalgic and recalling the seemingly endless sunny days of youth.

Calm, tranquil, happy, carefree...Ah, I like that! And while our days are not always thus, we can strive for it, aspire to it and perhaps create it for at least a small portion of each and every day.

Below is a poem by that title, from Whitman's Leaves of Grass.
Halcyon Days
by Walt Whitman
Not from successful love alone,
 Nor wealth, nor honor'd middle age, nor victories of politics or war;
 But as life wanes, and all the turbulent passions calm,
 As gorgeous, vapory, silent hues cover the evening sky,
 As softness, fulness, rest, suffuse the frame, like freshier, balmier air,
 As the days take on a mellower light, and the apple at last hangs
 really finish'd and indolent-ripe on the tree,
 Then for the teeming quietest, happiest days of all!
 The brooding and blissful halcyon days!
Thanks again for finding my blog. I look forward to meeting new friends and learning something new from you each and every day!.

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