Monday, September 26, 2016

Seas the Day at New Smyrna Beach

Tomorrow will be the 3rd anniversary of the day that David and I bought our 'piece of the beach'.  In those delightful years, we have had the opportunity to make many wonderful family memories there.  I look forward to the day we have grandchildren - and can share it with them!  We love New Smyrna.  It's quaint, it's family friendly, there are lots of good restaurants, there are a lot of wonderful water sport activities to enjoy, and there is a lot of breathtaking nature to see.  Then again, it's often nice to gaze out at the ocean from our living room or balcony.  Or, it's marvelous to be just steps away from the beach or pool.  Yes, New Smyrna Beach is my happy place!

If I was asked what we like most about our place on the beach I would have to say, of course, it is... sharing the unit with others!  In 2015 we rented our beachfront place for 300 days.  It is encouraging to know that we are going to beat that record in 2016!  I love that people like our place, and I love that they want to return to it again!  We try hard to make it a home away from home.  We vacation in the condo ourselves and use most everything our guests use.  It helps us to know what they experience.  It helps us to know what the condo might be missing.  We want our guests to sincerely know that we care about them, and feel blessed when they let us know that they get that!

Here is our condo's website:

Our View from the Living Room and Balcony

While at the condo, I love getting up early for quiet walks on the beach.  Usually I grab my camera when doing this, just in case God decides to show off with an extra special and beautiful sunrise.  Sometimes I see very strange things on the beach.  Other times I see the Lord's work clearly, and am humbled by the fact that He has given me an opportunity to capture the beauty of His nature.  Over the next few weeks I hope to focus on sharing some additional pics here~

This guy just got wet - and did not like it...
Drying off...
All fluffed up...

Monday, September 12, 2016

Crowns of Beauty Made from Ashes

 The first time I caught a glimpse of the World Trade Center Towers was during the final days of their construction. I was on a 6th grade field trip heading to the UN in a bus when someone, maybe the driver, pointed out the massive buildings along the way. He let us know that they would soon be the world's tallest twin buildings, overtaking the height of the Empire State Building by more than 100 feet. I was impressed, but once the job was complete, I only saw the towers a distance as I passed the city while traveling with my family on trips to New England. The first time I went into the city as an adult was just a couple of years after 911. I recall being stunned when visiting the site of where the former towers stood. The hole in the ground was larger than I ever fathomed, and deeper then I could have imagined. There were so many arguments on what to do with the site... It was evident that New Yorker's were quite resilient, (and so were their fellow Americans), so my only thoughts were that whatever they did, the people living there had been through enough, and deserved to see crowns of beauty made out of those painful ashes. Somehow that deep hollow grave needed to go away. Fast forward to 2015... A day trip to NYC gave us a chance to visit lower Manhattan to see what had been done to that pit of horror. The 9/11 Memorial Museum, the Ground Zero Memorial Tower, and everything surrounding them - including the WTC train station has skillful, class act architectural design. Seeing the amount of "history" collected in the museum for those who will "never forget" and for future generations alike was sobering. I don't recall seeing any other event in the history of this country shared with such personal and professional detail. Much of the museum is off limits to photography, but I took as many photos as I could. I just do not think that I captured even a faint glimmer of all that was displayed. After touring the museum though, we walked out to see the memorial fountains. It took a moment to recognize we were seeing that this place HAD come full circle. Over a dozen years had passed since we had been standing close to the sickening pit that needed to go away. Now we were watching large waterfalls cascading down elegant granite walls. Names of those no longer with us remembered. Truly the massive hole HAD now become crowns of beauty made from ashes. God be with and Bless America!
 World Trade Center Tower Pics

 Skyline with Towers

 Entrance to Museum - Remaining Beams Intact
Last Piece of Foundation Standing 
 Slurry Wall - 70' Foundation Prevented Train from Disaster
 Bent Steel
 3 photos to capture the height - #1
 WTC Dedication Post
 Missing Persons Flyers

 Survivors Stairwell
 South Tower Excavation
 Memory Quilt #1
 Memory Quilt #2
 FDNY Dream Bike
 Dream Bike Story
 Crystal from Time Square New Year's Eve Ball Honoring Victims and Heroes
 Official 911 Memorial Flag
 Memorials from Around the Country Photo 1
 Memorials from Around the Country Photo 2
 More Bent Steel

 Box column remnant of South Tower
 Steel work at the base of the tower


 Segment of Radio and TV Tower on North Building
 More of the Radio and TV Tower
 Elevator Motor - North Tower
 Laddar 3

In Memory of Laddar 3
 Remembrance Gardens