Tuesday, August 31, 2010

~ Wings of Time ~ Part 2

Yesterday was a double portion

in the nostalgia corner of my heart.

Not only did my kids go back to school, but

my dad had his 70th birthday.

I grew up admiring my dad.

People knew him and liked him.

Everywhere we went, people smiled when they saw Phil.

And he did too.

Always cracking a tease . . .

or giving you a nickname . . .

which was a sure bet that he liked you.

He calls my mom "Alice".

Her name is Linda.

My kids have grown up knowing,
"Papa only teases the people he likes."

I didn't inherit the teasing
I am always the serious one.

But I did want to be like my dad.

I wanted that recognition like he had...

when people heard his name,

they knew what he did

who he was

that he was the A.I. guy...

that raised gelbvieh cattle.

His name was positively associated with his work.

I wanted to emulate that.

I was proud to be his daughter.

I think that growing up, I thought everyone loved my dad like I did.

I wanted to be loved like that. 

I wanted people to see me the way I saw my dad.

We gave my dad a birthday card

to make him laugh.

It plays "The Chicken Dance".

My kids loved it . . . so did he.

Erin is 3.

Yesterday she called to "tell him it was his birthday".

He was already gone for the day, but when he called back in the evening,

I said "Hello"

and on the other end of the line

I heard

"The Chicken Dance".

As we passed the phone around to wish him

Happy Birthday,

each one was treated to "The Chicken Dance".

He was and is a blend of hard work and laughter

and loving my mom . . .

that I thought was true of all dads.

just like Charles and Caroline Ingalls on TV

on Little House on the Prairie.

I was blessed with parents like this.

I wanted a marriage like theirs ~ and I have one.

Last night, on my dad's 70th birthday and my kids' first day of school,

we finished reading

Little House In The Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder.

It ended in the fall.

The words were fitting,

"She thought to herself, 'This is now.'
She was glad that the cosy house,
and Pa and Ma and the firelight and the music,
were now. 
They could not be forgotten,
she thought, because
now is now.
It can never be a long time ago."

I am glad that I was happy, like Laura, 
to have now be now
as a girl growing up.

This is now.
I embrace it.
My dad at 70.
My kids at 11, 8 and 3 ~ going back to school.

keeps flying
to a new now
a new season
a new age.

Happy Birthday, Dad.

text copyright 2010, Jodene Shaw.

Monday, August 30, 2010

~Wings of Time~Part 1

First day of school 2010

~a different type of "mother's day"~

but it is in fact a mother's day

another season of the year

of life

has passed



it is always a marker

that the wings of time

have taken flight

and that time

does fly

on by



it's a time of new beginnings

it's own 'happy new year'

yet a time of endings

and of goodbyes



even the trees

drop their leaves

like a

mother's tears


on the

first day of school

as one season

falls into the next

the first signs of fall.

the yellow leaves

mingle with

what we saw

as a first sign of spring

a last yellow dandelion


Wings of time flying on


Photos and text copyright 2010 Jodene Shaw.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Opening New Doors in PHOTOGRAPHY

September 17-19

I am excited!
I am butterfly in the stomach nervous
with anticipation.

I've registered for my first photography ANYTHING
since high school!

I will get to learn from and spend time with
some professionals that I respect in the
local publishing and photography arena:
*Bernie Hunhoff from the South Dakota Magazine
*Chad Coppess Senior Photographer for SD Department of Tourism & State Development
His blog is Dakotagraph.

Did I mention that I am excited?
And going to have to pretend that I'm not nervous?
And a bit shy about my little camera I'll be taking?

I envision these incredible cameras . . . and here I will be with my
Canon PowerShot.

But . . . it's what I have got.  And I'm just excited
(oh, I already said that)
to get to go
indulge in something that I am passionate about:
photography of my state of South Dakota.
I love where I live and I love to embrace my place.
There is always something to savor where ever a person lives.
Something unique that someone from another area would notice and adore.
It is one of my goals to adore those things that are right here.
Right under my nose.
Right in my own back yard.
There is so much to do and see and learn and love
close to home.

If you want to join me,
click here:
Black Hills Photo Shootout

The SECOND thing is the
Better Homes and Gardens Photo Contest
"Home: It's where life happens"
The deadline is September 30 and I can enter one album with up to 6 pictures.
So . . . I am asking you to vote.
Just leave a comment of your theme choice.

3 choices:
click the first 2 see my blog of these.
Summer Bubbles
Sprinkler Sparkler
"Come Outside and Laugh With Me Mommy!"


These were some photos
I took of Erin this spring after she said,
"Come outside and laugh with me, Mommy!"
How can a mom resist that?

In the photo above, she was saying,
"Be free!  Be free water!"  as she broke the ice.

Part of my life right now...
as a mom

And here she was saying,
as her boots suction-cupped in the mud,
"I'm scared!  I'm scared, Mommy!"

We decided that going on an adventure
has to have times when you are scared
that's what makes it
an adventure.

I'd love to know your vote for the photo contest!
Have a great week!

All photos copyright 2010 Jodene (Jodi) Shaw.

Friday, August 27, 2010

SNEAK PEAK! Into Believe Truth ~ e-course ~

Can I say that I am humbled by the support for this upcoming e-course?!
You ladies have given me so much encouragement
and the enrollment has made me feel a bit . . . well . . .
let's just say that I want this to be great for you!
And it is going to be.
Just the preparation for it has been so exciting.
I have stories that I can't wait to share!
In fact...
I cannot stand to wait.

My new blog friend Jennifer is hosting a Friday blog party,
so I am joining the fun
with my own sneak peek.
Jennifer's art is phenomenal...check it out here:  Studio JRU

SO . . .
I am giving you a preview
of what to expect for the upcoming e-course


which begins September 7.
The day after Labor Day.

So . . . click HERE
to go to the preview:
OR. . .
look up at the top of this page....all the way up
in the right hand corner....
and click on SNEAK PEAK!

If you think it is going to be too much reading,
check this out!

Then you will have an idea of what it will be like!
Have questions?
Check out FAQ here.
Or also see the tabs at the top of the page.
Or email me at jodeneshaw@yahoo.com


Remember. . . South Dakota residents can mail checks.
They need to be received by September 1 so that I can get your password to you!

Enrolling online through credit card or paypal?
Go ahead an enroll right up to September 6.

Thank you so much
for so much support and encouragement!

Monday, August 23, 2010

South Dakota Summer: Swimming the Buffalo Watering Hole

Once in a lifetime moments.

I love to have them.

I love to make a point to remember them.

This was one of those.

After our "Lover's Leap" 3.5 hour, 3.5 mile morning hike,

we opted to let the kids swim

at a little "beach pond"

in Custer State Park.

Ahhhhh . . . . time to kick the feet up and

relaaaaaxxxxx . . .

Just as the foundation was laid for

Erin's first sandcastle,

that had stranded us earlier in the day

was being driven through the beach area

to the sounding crack of a bullwhip!

Just look at the thrill on thier faces:

But a short 15 minutes later,

after watching the herd take a few gulps of water

the coast was clear.

And they were back in the water.

No sharks here.

Just a few hundred buffalo passing through.

Beach hazards . . . South Dakota style.

copyright August 2010 Jodene (Jodi) Shaw.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

South Dakota Summer~ Hiking Lover's Leap Trail 3 "so-called" miles with a 3 year old

My "Hiking the Black Hills" book said that the Lover's Leap Trail

is a 3 mile loop that

starts out with a 30-45 minute strenuous climb

to the peak.

Followed by a moderate to easy one mile return.

The "one mile return" is highly debatable . . . more like two.

But maybe circumstances clouded our mileage judgement.

We knew it would be an adventure with three skeptical kids.

One of those three being three years old.

Up the first stretch, she said, "I'm going to need a bubble bath after this."

Going up the third or fourth stretch of pine cone and rock covered path,

she declared breathlessly, "I'm going to need THREE bubble bath-ez!"

Near the top, we were rewarded with a beautiful outcropping

of white and rose quartz

upon which I did get the kids to perch for a shot

and to hold up a few "cool" rocks for a picture.

My daughter also discovered a heart in the path.

This would be the only photo of me:  my feet.

Because I am too vain to have a photo with no shower or makeup.

Not long after the quartz,

Jim spotted this tree

and said, "Take a picture of this."

When Erin asked, "What did that?"

I said, "A porcupine."

After this tree, Jim suggested we stay "grouped up".

Perhaps it was people who did this to the tree with a knife or something.

Or perhaps it was a nice large kitty's scratching post.

We, fortunately, did not find out, and moved on to our destination:

where legend says two native lovers jumped to their death.

The rocks did have haunting familiarity to a similar scene in the movie

The Last of the Mohicans.

Jim and I could hear the movie soundtrack pounding in our ears.

Or . . . maybe that was our heartbeats pounding in out-of-shape protest to the climb.

While it is not Harney Peak, or McKinley, or Everest,

we did have to take a picture to mark the moment.

{Notice each one is leaning against something.}

No guard rails here,

Tom was eager to get going down the hill

so that Erin did not unknowingly step over an edge

or around a bottomless corner.

A mother and daughter had caught up with us

with their ambitious panting black pooch on a leash.

I was more worried about the dog

pulling one of them over the edge.

Yet, I did keep a tight grip on Erin's pudgy little paw.

As we began our descent,

Erin picked up a crooked pine branch

pretending to be the "grandma" and that I was her "sweetie".

This little game was a good excuse to hold her hand

. . . because she was an old lady needing her "sweetie's" help.

And entertained her enough to curb the whining

. . . because grandma's do not whine.

Baby Ponderosa pines carpeted the hillside on our way down.

And soon, we heard the trickle of a stream.

Ten creek crossings were before us.

We had planned to walk through the water,

but each crossing did have boards that could be crossed,

rocks, or a walk through the water.

Along with acres of poison ivy on either side of the trail.

At each crossing, the kids washed their legs in the water.

And after awhile,

Jim and I took turns carrying Erin on our back.

The poison ivy leaves were right at her hand level.

And a three-year-old with poison ivy was something

to avoid!

Which, thankfully, we did avoid.

At last, we made the ten creek crossings,

the end of poison ivy,

and got to a nice smooth paved trail.

To find this waiting for us:

along with about 500 of his friends.

This one being the smallest:

So . . . we asked a KELO-land news photographer who had just come around the bend

if we could get back to our room at the State Game Lodge

about a half mile away with a heard of 500 bison blocking us.

His response . . . "Oh, just stay on this side of the road, and you will be fine.

Besides, it's not like they are going to charge you

unless you piss one of them off."

Ok, so I should have taken a clue from his nonchalant and naive disrespect for

2000 plus pounds of wild mating-season bison bull.

But, I thought, "Well, he did just come around the corner,

so he must have seen where they are,"

and the tired part of me thought, "This herd could stay here ALL day."

We set off on the opposite side of the highway from the buffalo,

planning to climb up the side of the hill about 25 yards for some distance.

Jim, me, Tom and Syd, both wide-eyed looking at us like we were crazy,

and Erin in her three-year-old non-stop chatty oblivion.

A few steps into it, we decide to turn back.

I mean, we both know that being on the "other side of the road" is no protection.

We also know that we don't have to try

to "piss one of them off" for it to actually happen.

And we know how 2000 pound domestic angus bulls behave

when competing for a female's attention.

A few minutes later we see two buffalo cows come around the corner

on that "opposite" side of the road.

Both older, wiser kids reminded us that we would have come face-to-face with them.

So . . . Jim asks a tour van driver if we can hop in with his tour

for a ride around the corner.

And, "voila", a tip of some cash later, we are at our starting point

on the other side of the herd.

And that

is our "Lover's Leap Adventure."

Worth it?

You bet!

Recommend it?


Saturday, August 21, 2010

South Dakota Summer: Hiking G. Coolidge Walk-In Fishing Area

Custer State Park 2010

Savoring our state of South Dakota

The Black Hills

This last week,
we hiked some trails that we never had before.

Tommy loves fishing.

In fact, he is never done fishing. 
So the Grace Coolidge Walk-In Fishing Area hike
was perfect for him.
Especially when he hooked a beautiful rainbow trout.
Erin was "hooked" too,
when her pink salmon eggs helped her reel in a chub.

Sydney and Erin were happy to wade in the creek crossings.

I was content to photograph reflections in the six pools on the trail
along with my favorite subjects:
my family.

And a few of my other favorite things:
birds, wildflowers & butterflies.

Sydney said it was a "butterfly festival"!
We saw so many, I had to buy a new butterfly book.
So that we could identify the unique ones we saw.
I am "all about" the name, the identity, the unique characteristics . . .
in a bird, a butterfly, a flower
 . . . a person.

This gray and black ragged-edged little one,

unfolded like a paper snowflake . . .

to reveal vibrant orange and ornate-edged wings.

Fun times with the people I love!

all copyright 2010 Jodene (Jodi) Shaw.