* My featured image is part of the Louis Comfort Tiffany collection at the Morse Museum of Winter Park, Florida. The museum is hosting an open house Thanksgiving weekend with free admission. Click here to read more about the history of stained glass.
Dear readers, this week is a time to count our blessings instead of calories. Thank you for following my blog. Happy Thanksgiving!
My favorite part of camping is sitting by the fire. When the logs crackle and orange flames flicker, I visit my pondering place. I love to daydream. I think of my daydreams as a kind of reality waiting for me in the future. Dreaming plants the seeds which will eventually grow to maturity and bear fruit.
Is dreaming a waste of time?
As a child, my teacher reprimanded me for looking out of the window during class. The outdoors seemed much more interesting than what was happening on the chalkboard. She tried to keep me from daydreaming by calling me up to the front of the room to work math problems in front of the class. I felt embarrassed. It seemed that no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t stop daydreaming.
People who daydream are happier because hope and anticipation are related to the practice of imagining the achievement of our goals.
Daydreaming lowers blood pressure due to less stress.
Letting our minds wander can promote our creativity and problem-solving abilities. (I don’t think my math teacher understood this one.)
Time spent in reflection can help us become more compassionate because we can contemplate what others are feeling.
Daydreaming improves our working memory.
What did King Solomon know?
King Solomon is considered one of the wisest men who ever lived. Proverbs 29:18 reminds us “Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.”
Although daydreaming isn’t one of God’s commandments, resting from our daily routine is. Resting provides an opportunity to let our brains function differently. When our brain is relaxing, we are free to allow our minds to create and problem solve in new ways.
There are many settings conducive to excellent daydreaming. What is your favorite place to dream?
This Halloween I wanted to get away from the hundreds of trick or treaters who descend upon our neighborhood. Some are respectful, while others drop candy wrappers, and treats along the sidewalk near our home. For days afterwards, our beagle, gobbles as many discarded goodies he can find, including chocolates.
In order to avoid a potentially dangerous situation for our pet, my husband and I decided to take Buddy camping at Johnathan Dickinson State Park in south Florida. Herb suggested I bring candy to the campsite. “After all, some trick or treaters might show up at the park.”
As any good wife would do, I packed a bag of assorted miniature chocolates. (Even though I knew we would be eating all of them.)
Our first night at the park was special. The campground was located near the Atlantic and we appreciated the cool ocean breeze. Although the sparse trees gave little shade, we marveled at the beauty of the night sky.
When our campfire was reduced to embers, we took Buddy for his last walk of the day. Outside the community shower-house we noticed a huge toad sitting in front of a Pepsi machine. “That toad looks like it’s trying to decide if it wants to drink Pepsi or Mountain Dew,” Herb chuckled.
By the time I snapped a photo, the toad had hopped around to the side of the machine. It was very sensitive to our presence.
Soon a neighboring camper joined us. “Keep your dog away from that toad. It’s poisonous.”
Lucky for us, Buddy didn’t approach Mr. Toad. Still, we were thankful for the information and walked on.
The next day we asked a ranger about the toad at the Pepsi machine. She informed us several Bufo toads live under the machine. They come out at night to catch the insects attracted by the light. They are very dangerous and dogs can die within minutes of licking a Bufo toad. Although the park staff has tried to get rid of them, they keep coming back.
Herb and I were shocked. In our efforts to protect Buddy from “dangerous trick or treaters,” we put him square in the path of a deadly toad!
We were successful in keeping Buddy away from the Bufo toads for the rest of our long weekend. As we drove home we congratulated each other for being such good pet owners.
Then Monday came. Herb noticed Buddy licking his doggie lips on their morning walk. He reached in Buddy’s mouth and pulled out a bubblegum wrapper. Sigh…