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Thursday, January 7, 2016

What The Toucan Taught Me

It’s been quiet, save for a few crickets, on the DTA blog and FB pages.

I’ve been off of the electronic grid for almost three weeks, the longest time span away in almost a decade.

It truly was the cure for what had been ailing me.


In mid December I took some time to look within and decided I wanted to slow down. 


I made the decision to step away from the blog and facebook except for a few scheduled posts. I then just turned off the computer and slowly looked at life around me.


Taking a slower place allowed me to choose the best in everything instead of making swift, off the cuff, choices that often end up totally wrong.


It was hard at first to not want to turn on the computer but then I became busy with other lovely things. I scrubbed and cleaned areas of the house that really needed it.

IMG_0871_thumbIt was kind of eye opening to realize just how much the computer sucked time away during the day. I read books that had been long on my “must read” list, watched wonderful holiday movies and took long walks to bask in the sunshine.


My family spent such meaningful time together. We truly enjoyed creating memories and savoring our surroundings.


Once we left the country and traveled to Panama it became even easier to not be tempted by electronics. I limited myself to just ten minutes day opting to swim in warm ocean waters instead.


I discovered that life still happened. I had just been missing most of it while trying to feverishly capture it on camera. I saw not one, but two amazing blue butterflies and just reveled in the magical experience. I learned that I really didn’t need to know why the chicken was crossing the road but just to enjoy that it did.


In the quiet stillness I was blessed with seeing things that I normally would miss.


Being alert made it possible for me to quickly determine what might be bad for me.


I knew that if I went back to my old ways I might miss truly seeing what is pure, light and altogether lovely. Much like the crane in this picture.


Upon my return I faced a gigantic stack of mail, almost 400 emails and over 500 unread blog posts. I started to open them and found that most fell under the category of “Finding Your Bliss in the New Year” by means of diet or organizing. I quickly lost two hours by being on the computer to learn what I already knew. I made the hard decision to delete the rest and walked away. I indeed began organizing my life by putting the Christmas decor away and went into the kitchen to make a yummy lasagna on a rainy day instead of merely reading about it. These choices made my heart take flight.


It reminded me of this toucan. I had never seen one up close. I took such delight in his blue feet and multicolored beak. Sure he had a lot going on but somehow made it work beautifully. Even though his enormous beak was almost the same size as his body he was still able to fly just by sheer pererverance. 


When an idiot kid threw a potato chip and a piece of watermelon at him he slowly surveyed the sitution with his gorgeous green rimmed eye. Then he purposely selected the good and savored it.


May you find your bliss in this new year.



Auntie Em said...

Beautiful pictures and a wonderful read. And a very important message. We need to use the computers as tools and not being the tool that the computer uses.
Thank you for sharing! {{{hugs}}}

bettyann said...

Good message for all of us. Happy New Year.

Harold Emery said...

Great write, fabulous pics, Laura.
TTFN ~ Marydon

Catherine Holman said...

That's exactly what I need to do. I need to turn around, get up, and walk away from this computer! Glad you had a lovely time!

Stacey said...

I've never even thought about going to Panama for a vacation. Your photos are beautiful! So glad you had a wonderful break. :)

Fairhope Supply Co. said...

So, are we going to see less of you this year? I'm a rare blogger who logs into facebook, posts, and logs out. It's the one area I don't get sucked into. Now, if I can only say the same someday for Instagram, emails, etc . . . You are a great example!

Linda said...

I LOVE this post so much!!!
I have felt the same way about technology for a very long time and I am finally beginning to do something about it. I've removed myself from Facebook outside of the very occasional pop in to see what wonderful photos my photographer daughter has posted. I can't resist that! Other than that though, I made a decision to refrain from posting anything further. I don't know if it will be forever, though that is my intent. It's just too much of a time waster, I basically only went there most of the time because I was bored and it was an easy outlet to get sucked into and for me, it is NOT a healthy outlet. Too often I would get upset because I'd take the time to post carefully my photography or my newspaper columns without even a comment or a like from others. I know that's not why we do things, but come on - everyone wants to know that they are "liked" ;) The other thing that I would find myself doing, with my bipolar personality, is feeling like less of a person because of comparisons to others and their achievements. So.... after much prayer, I know this isn't the right place for me and I'm removing myself. Next up is Instagram, though that was nearly as great of an issue. I will keep my accounts for the purpose of occasionally checking in to make sure that I'm not missing something important from a dear friend or family member, but I will not make it my daily presence anymore.

I still read the blogs though, because I don't feel those were an issue and I've always enjoyed reading the few that I follow - they are like an interesting novel or beautiful magazine. ;)

Anyway - all I'm saying is that I appreciate you and your insight.
Much love to you and your family,

lynn cockrell said...

Your post is lovely, Laura. I have never been to Panama. My parents did and they loved it. It looks like you had a beautiful and relaxing trip. It is easy to get caught up in the everyday cycle of a world that can sometimes be maddening. It is good to be reminded that it is the small things shared with those close to us that are really important.

GSGreatEscaper said...

Why I don't facebook!

That stripey thing looks like some crocheting gone horribly wrong. I hope you'll keep on with your decorating posts, though, because I have found your guidance so helpful.

Charm Bracelet Diva {at Home} said...

Glad you were able to so enjoy your time away. I barely sat at the computer for two weeks and it felt SO good! I spent time at home, with family and in the mountains for New Year's. It was a nice, slow and quiet holiday. I truly enjoyed it. Hope you have a fantastic 2016! xoKathleen

Liz Hockamier said...

Again... putting words to my exact thoughts.

I came to the same conclusion, through different circumstances,
but the same conclusion none the less. I'm really enjoying Instagram.
It is so much easier and quick.... I can't say that I will give up the
blog.... I have so much time invested in it... but I think that I will
just use it as I originally intended it to be... a public diary.


Karen Hess said...

Good for you, Laura! I've faced that awakening and can say that it IS the best decision. Follow your heart and the rest will come. Have a blissful New a Year!
XO Karen

nonie everythingsewing said...

Laura, how beautiful. Yes, we do seem to get sucked into what is not important. You put into words, thoughts that have been running through my mind but I could not quite put the feelings into words. Thank you, this indeed will be a wonderful New year.

Magali@TheLittleWhiteHouse said...

The pictures are beautifuk and so is the message in your post.