Friday, July 2, 2010

MY GIFTS FROM THE SEA...

One should lie empty, open, choiceless as a beach - waiting for a gift from the sea.

-Anne Morrow Lindbergh-

Walking along the gravel pathway I toed a small stone sending it skittering across the ground anticipating the reaction of my companion as she pounced upon it rolling onto her back in obvious pleasure at playing our game. I felt a small bow of smile lift the corner of my lips at her antics but it was short lived as a deep sigh escaped. I was missing my beloved once a year tryst with the sea. A land locked lover of all things sand, surf, sun, shells, and seagulls kind of girl like me can get a little down in the mouth with no seaside visit in her near future.Still scuffing the ground as I strolled along I was delighted to find driftwood on dry land! OK, it was not real driftwood, but silvered weather worn oak twigs that reminded me of seaside finds. I collected a handful thinking how I could use it in an art project. I thought that even though I will miss my trip to the shore that I would still indulge in my annual reading of Gifts From The Sea. I headed to the writing cottage with Miss Kitty in tow to retrieve my copy.As I was about to place my foot on the step I thought I was surly seeing things, but no, right next to the step was a sun bleached shell! I marveled at its presence, a gift from the sea, where no gift should be. Bending slowly I peered at it more closely, yes it surely was a shell. I cradled it in the palm of my hand and examined it with my eyes taking in each twist and swirl from its tiny tip to channeled opening marveling over its intricate beauty. The shell I held in my hand was weightless and open.I knew in my heart it was nothing more than a large snail shell, but still, I was thinking of the seaside and walking along the patterned sands, finding gifts from the sea, cast upon the land by the ebb and flow of the tides and there it was. I was day dreaming of a solitary stroll at sunrise, the rustling sound of sea oats on the salty breeze keeping time with the song of the sea as it undulates to and fro.Mere steps away resting on a rustic shelf sat my summer read, snippets of its text roll through my mind like the lazy waves at the beach..." One never knows what chance treasures these easy unconscious rollers may toss up, on the smooth white sand of the conscious mind; ...Patience, patience, patience, is what the sea teaches. Patience and faith. One should lie empty, open, choice-less as a beach - waiting for a gift from the sea."Gathering my land locked lovelies, book, and a much loved painting by Helen Read that evokes the feel of beach side living, I retreated into the cool shelter of the house. The whisper of patience seemed to be the echoing song emanating from the hollow of the tiny shell banishing sad sighs and unfulfilled longings replacing them with faith.Faith, to empty myself of sadness. Faith, to open myself, my heart, wide like the endless expanse of sand, sky, and sea. Faith, to extend my unfurled hand to receive the gift. And faith, to wait expectantly for a gift from the sea. As I settled down in my favorite chair, painting propped at my elbow, land locked treasures arranged at its base, I find again some of the joy in the now, some of the peace in the here.As I opened my book the call of " the waves echo behind me." The shell at my side whispers of " Patience - Faith - Openness," lessons the sea teaches. " Simplicity - Solitude - Intermittency..." There will be other summers, other seaside trysts, other beaches to explore. There will be other shells to find and new lessons to learn.I smile in earnest at my gift from the sea. I would never have discovered it on some far away beach, in a rolling tide, in the cry of gull, in the grittiness of an oat filled dune, or on a solitary seaside walk at sunrise.The gift could only be found in my own backyard - the satisfaction in my circumstances, seeking out simple summer joys, enjoying the moment even if it means merely a walk down a country lane instead of an expanse of beach or reading a book in a simulated but no less inspiring setting. " Perhaps we never appreciate the here and now until it is challenged..."

I am ready to accept and embrace my gift from the sea; " true appreciation of the value of the here and now."
Wishing you simple joys, peaceful satisfaction in your circumstances, and a deep and abiding appreciation of the here and now. Have a happy and safe 4th of July!

Blessings,
Miss Sandy

Seaside photos were taken at St. Simons Island, Georgia
All Quotes are from " Gifts From The Sea" by Anne Morrow Lindbergh

19 comments:

Bonita said...

Beautiful! I'm a sea lover too and this is my second summer without a visit to the sea. I miss it terribly, but God seems to be speaking the same message over and over through many different messengers: Be content where you are at this moment. I'm still working on it because an early morning stroll where frothy waves meet sandy shores sounds like great therapy at the moment.

Helen Read said...

Sandy, how nice ... I've never lived close to the sea, but have always enjoyed time when I get to be near it! Thanks you for dropping by my blog and leaving such a nice comment!
... and its fun to see this painting again! Many blessings to you!

Linda said...

My favorite book ever! And you presented this so wonderfully - beautiful photos. :)

E. Charlotte said...

I so enjoyed your blog post! My parents are right now feeling the sand beneath their feet and inhaling the fresh sea air on vacation, and I long to be with them! There's a large part of my heart devoted to the ocean and it starts to ache this time of year if I haven't visited. Thanks for sharing the pictures and story!

E. Charlotte said...

I so enjoyed your blog post! My parents are right now feeling the sand beneath their feet and inhaling the fresh sea air on vacation, and I long to be with them! There's a large part of my heart devoted to the ocean and it starts to ache this time of year if I haven't visited. Thanks for sharing the pictures and story!

luluslovlies said...

Hi Sandy, Thanks for visiting my blog from the blog party, I'm still working my way down the list, but when I read your post on my blog I had to remark on yours, Gifts from the Sea, among others is one of my very favorites. I have always been an old soul at heart even when I was young, now I'm an Old soul, young at heart not in body though! lol, Hapy and a Blessed 4th of July! XOXO

Terri's ThreadArt said...

Dearest Sandy,
Thanks so much for coming by to say Hi.Your blog is so touching and inspiring!How wonderful to "meet" you!
Happy 4th!
Terri

Vee said...

(Let's see if I can comment this time. I'm wondering if it's my computer or Blogger, but I've been having a dickens of a time at lots of blogs trying to say something...and you know how I love to say something.)

This was a beautiful post and makes me long to visit the sea myself and I only live 33 miles away. Wishing that you'll be able to visit your beloved ocean one day soon. Nothing like the calming sound of those waves or the screaking of the gulls or the intoxicating smell...your beach does smell like the ocean, right?

Diane said...

Miss Sandy, thank you for this post and the lovely one below it. I too love that book....
Your photos are truly artful and your words heartful. No one I know has quite the way with words that you do. Someday...the book, please? Try Harvest House Publishers. No, I'm serious. I don't jest. God has blessed you with a true gift.

Your seashore photos beckon me...I also long for the sea. But I'm a Pisces so I guess it makes sense. I long to be near water of any kind, ocean, river, stream, lake....it's my dream to live on a lake or pond...

Well, I must begin my Saturday! I've had a week of sewing relaxation. Today and tomorrow will be the end of it and then back to painting to pay the piper. A blessing that I love it too. Yet, sometimes a separation from it makes me long for its return even more and I come back to it fully inspired. I hope you have a lovely weekend, sweet lady.

Blessings,
Diane

Tarnished and Tattered said...

Miss Sandy,
What a beautiful melancholy post. You said it all with such grace. I share your feelings. I love the sea so much & hoped to take my children for their first seaside adventure. I am sad for my own selfish reasons that my children may never see the beaches I loved so at their age. Your post also reminded me that you don't have to travel far for beauty, it's often in our own backyard. Have a wonderful & safe holiday my friend. Lisa

Diana said...

Miss Sandy,
Thank you for this most beautiful post. I also have been longing for the sea. I am going on 3 years with out a visit. My husband surprised me and is taking me to Monterey for 1 night tomorrow. I will think about you and breath some sea air for you. You truly have a gift for writing and I love your blog.

Isabel said...

Hi! Thanx for visiting my blog:O)I love all the wonderful pictures of the sea...I live near the beach for 9 yrs and miss it!!!:O) Thanx again for stopping by and thanx for sharing~ Isabel

MosaicMagpie said...

Sandy,
Thank you for wisiting my blog and workspace. I have not gotten around to everyone yet. I have enjoyed reading and looking at your blog I am a follower and look forward to getting to know you. I read where you have had bronchitis, so have I and still do.
Hope you are better.
Debbie

SALTBOX TREASURES said...

Thanks for visiting my blog. I just browsed through your blog. It is lovely! I hope you are completely recovered from your bee sting reaction. You'll have to make sure you have an emergency bee sting kit.
I look forward to seeing your new studio.
~ Julie

Marianne@Songbird said...

Wonderful! Like a bit of vacation and a fresh of fresh air (with a salty taste).
Thank you for sharing. And I took a peak at your plans for your studio. Looks like you already have a wonderful place and whatever you do it will be even more beautiful then. Good luck with the thrifting.

Vickie said...

Beautiful post, and so poignant, too, Miss Sandy. I hope you get to visit your ocean soon and "scratch that itch". There's just something about the ocean. I'm fortunate to be able to visit the ocean in about a month and am SOOO looking forward to soaking up every single minute.

But I'm glad you found the little shell and a place of contentment in your soul for now...

Leanne said...

I am finally returning comments from WBC. I look forward to your reveal, but I also wanted to say that all that weathered wood has reminded me of art class in high school ... thanks for bringing back those memories!

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

How beautiful...this really touched me...I love the sea! I spent my birthday this year on Jekyll Island...and St. Simon's! I am in awe of your writing! ♥

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

I see now that you've quoted...I love it and all of the beautiful photos! Have a wonderful weekend! ♥

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