Inside the Mind of Isadora


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Nurture Yourself – with Serenity

Bench-Peaceful-2-webSerenity                          2015©photography by Isadora

Because of our daily stress filled lives, we need to create a quietly calm

and peacefully still place where we can feel tranquility.

Whether you meditate or not the focus is to clear your mind of thoughts.

Our imagination can help us with this very difficult task of relaxing

by providing us the ability to dream of magical places.

I love to visualize a garden filled with flowers of every imaginable color.

It’s an image that can make anyone smile.

Nurturing yourself at the end of the day can help with better

peaceful relaxing sleep for better health.

Can you imagine a place of serenity?
2015©Isadora

KITARO – SONG FOR PEACE – BEAUTIFUL FLOWERS

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Becca at On Dragonfly Wings with Buttercup Tea
hosts Nurturing Thursday
to join in click here

 

 


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Magic Ice

Ice Seahorse.web  Ice Seahorse

Reading this title, you must be thinking I am about to talk about a magician.Someone who will create an illusion right before your eyes. There is an illusion involved but not with the human eye. Instead, it happens in your photographs.

Intrigued? Curious? Eager to know?

Okay

A recent vacation took us to the waterfront of Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas. I came across a brochure advertising magical ice sculptures. It was called Magic Ice and I was curious. In August, St. Thomas is very, very hot. Having been to the island several times before, we were looking for something we hadn’t seen or done.

We decided … Hot = need a cooler place to be …. so off we went to find this Magic Ice place.

Ice - Magic.web

The front entrance doesn’t give you any indication of cold.

Ice Magic Ice Welcome sign.web

Owners description: We welcome you to the biggest permanent ice gallery in the world! Magic Ice`s entire exhibition is constructed of crystal clear ice consisting of beautiful sculptures, a kids slide, wedding chapel and a pirate ship bar, all made of ICE!Large parts of the exhibition will emphasize the rich history of the Caribbean. You will get a glimpse into the 18th century lifestyle. Here you will find sculptures from the “Golden Age of Piracy” and at the pirate ship ice bar you will receive your drink. Photos and videos are welcomed and our staff look forward to taking you on a tour!

We entered and paid our fee of which included a shot of any flavored or plain

Cruzan rum in addition to the shot glass with the Magic Ice logo. Non-drinkers can enjoy a cold shot of soda.

Ice  ponchos.web

Dressed in our cold weather ponchos with furry hoods and gloves we were ready to view this ice sculptures. The cold blast as you enter is a shock in comparison to the brutal heat left behind. My glasses fogged up as soon as I entered. Laughing at our oversized ponchos and my inability to see through foggy glasses, I had a sense this was going to be fun.Upon entering, a guide told us the ice sculptures could not be touched with the exception of the throne chair where we could sit and take a photograph. He explained that it was a self-guided walk and we were welcome to take as many photos as we’d like.

Isa cold.web      I found the ice throne chair a bit cold when I sat on it.

The ice sculptures appear white when you view them. The colors appear in your photos.                                                            It’s achieved by leaving your flash off.

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Magic Ice Colors

Ice House Bar.web

This is the bar where your Cruzan rum is served in a chilled shot glass. There was a large crowd that day. You could purchase additional shots if that is your thing. It was a lively group with the bartender taking photos of you and your drink.

         Ice Bartender

Ice Bartender

After a bit of festivity, our friendly bartender asked for my camera as he was going to take the photo of us in the midst of this chilly fun party. He tried several times to capture the photo. Finally, he said the camera button was stuck. I took the camera and tried to take a photo.

After I captured 3 photos that looked like this ….

I panicked. Abruptly, I turned and started looking for the exit. I thought my camera was ruined. I had one thought and one thought only … I’ve got to get this camera outside. I couldn’t remove the big poncho and gloves quickly enough. I sat on a bench and hugged my camera. I was beside myself. After my very patient husband calmed me down, he viewed the lens and found it did have fog on it. I had no idea what to do. I put it in my carrying case and decided I would look at it after I had calmed down a bit more. Eventually, I took it out and I was able to capture a few photos of some flowers and trees as test shots. It has been okay ever since.

Flower - hazy orchid.webThe photo above still shows a hazy cloud …                                                                                                                                           The one below is a little better but not quite there.                                                                                                            However, I was much more hopeful once I saw these 2 photos.

Orchid in Tree.web

I don’t know if there’s a special camera lens for photos in colder climates. If anyone knows what happened and would like to share, please do, or if you have a post on this type of photographing leave the url and I will add it to my story. Overall, it was a fun place to visit. I captured the ice sculptures I could considering the amount of people visiting that day.

2015©Isadora


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Nurture Yourself – with Peaceful Dreams

Nurturing Sky A.web       Colorful Balloons  2015©art by Isadora

 

May all your dreams have colorful balloons

to take you on a flight of peaceful tranquility.

For tonight is dark but in the morning

light anew arises.

2015©Isadora

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Becca at On Dragonfly Wings with Buttercup Tea

hosts Nurturing Thursday

to join in click here


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Pondering from Mabel – Recalling Love and Marriage

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I’m just about worn out from all the celebratin’ we had going on here at my assisted living home for the holidays. The dining hall was lit up real pretty and everyone was in a festive mood.

 
My daughter, Tessa, wanted to celebrate New Year’s with me but I wouldn’t have it. She was here for Christmas and that was good enough. Besides, I didn’t want her and her husband, Orville, on the road on a dangerous night like that. She’s so sweet though, bless her heart.

On New Year’s eve, there were fireworks at dusk over the fountain in the man-made lake. Of course, no one would have made it to midnight.

There was a bit of fireworks over at Melba’s place right after. It looks like Willie was a bit disoriented and wound up at Melba’s place. What made it hilarious was that Willie wouldn’t get out of her bed and kept saying, “Come to bed, Honey.” At 91 years young, I think Willie was confused about how well his willie was going to do. Everyone had a good laugh about it and Melba’s dignity was restored the next day.

When all that happened, I recalled an article I had read when I was younger about Love and Marriage.

Here’s what I remember from it ….

Love & Marriage
 
Love is holding hands in the street.


Marriage is holding arguments in the street.



Love is dinner for 2 in your favorite restaurant
.

Marriage is a take home box.



Love is cuddling on a sofa.


Marriage is one of them sleeping on a sofa.



Love is talking about having children.


Marriage is talking about how to get away from children.



Love is going to bed early.


Marriage is going to sleep early.



Love is a romantic drive.


Marriage is never making it into the car for a drive.



Love is losing your appetite.


Marriage is losing your figure.



Love is sweet nothings’ in the ear.


Marriage is sweet nothing in the bank.



Love is never watching TV.


Marriage is a fight for the remote control.



Love is 1 drink and 2 straws.


Marriage is “Don’t you think you’ve had enough!”.



Conclusion:

”Love is blind, Marriage is an eye opener!!!”

Hope your year 2015 is a good one ….
Live Life
Hugs, Mabel

   ***** Mabel is a character I’ve developed for the purpose of writing about life with a tongue-in-cheek sense of humor from a seniors citizens point of view.          


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Art for Living in 2015

Wine-glass-purple.webPurple Mist    2015©art photography by Isadora

Art for Living in 2015

Midnight bells echoed in the birth of 2015. 
A new year to create a better life than the one we had the last year. 
I hope 2014 was a good year for you; filled with wonderful memories. 
But, this year is going to be the year to create an Art for Living of life adventures.

2015 is your new beginning ….

Do you like new beginnings? I do.

When we can begin anew, the canvas is blank. Everyday, we can use ourselves as brushes for splattering color into our daily routines. We begin to see color as an energy to get us to the following day. Dark black days can turn into bright yellow days. We create our own painting on our own canvas.
Life is art ….. Create it !!!

Why not make this year the year to take special care of you? 

Treat yourself as if you were brand new.

How about a massage to eliminate those toxins in your body that are draining your energy?
You’d be surprised at how much calmer you will feel. Did you know that doctor’s are recommending them for better circulation? Your bad knees and back pains will hurt less while easing some of your suffering; plus you’ll have more energy afterwards.

Keep yourself in the best health you can.

Naturally, some health conditions already require monitoring our nutrition. But, perhaps, it’s simply time to make healthier choices with your food selections. Explore the art of cooking for healthier eating. Make a new recipe. You don’t have to eliminate your favorite foods altogether merely eat a smaller portion.

 Keep yourself fit in one of the simplest ways.
Walking.
Take a walk around your neighborhood and really view it. Take a different path and see new areas around your community. You may discover some things you hadn’t noticed before.

Keep yourself in a mindful state everyday.
Meditate to bring your blood pressure down while calming your body.

Create a peaceful spirit each new day by taking time to be silent. 

Silence helps us hear those little voices we can’t hear when we have mindless chatter buzzing around. When we’re weary, frazzled, worn-out or stressed having a moment to sit quietly reenergizes us.
A mere 5 minutes can make you feel exceedingly calm. Those peacefully soft voices are important for us to hear. They’re guiding our journey into a calmer life.
We need only listen and they will tell us what we need to do. 

Be conscious of yourself by making yourself look brand new. 

Create a new day filled with colors that are new to you.

The ones you never consider are you. They may surprise you.

Have you been stuck in the same color palette with your clothes?
Try purchasing something bright and cheerful or soft and subtle;
even if it’s just a scarf. 
Colors brighten us in understated ways.
Each color brings out something in us. 

It would be unrealistic to believe that all will be perfect.
Just try a little change in your life by creating a little art in you
You might be very surprised at how it can make a big difference.
We aren’t new but we can treat ourselves to a brand new you by approaching our days with a broad brush stroke of artful creativity towards ourselves and our lives. 

Here we go …. get on board for a great ride in 2015 ….!!!!

Let’s make 2015 the best year we can.

Happy New Year to all …
Isadora 
2015©written by Isadora


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T’was the Night before Christmas – Florida Style

Santa w-Flamingo
Florida Christmas Poem

T’was the night before Christmas, and all through the town,
No noses were frozen, nor snow on the ground.

No children in flannels were tucked into bed,
They all wore their shorty pajamas instead.

To find wreaths of holly was not very hard,
For holly trees sprouted in every backyard.

In front of the houses were daddies and moms,
Decorating hibiscus and coconut palms.

The slumbering kiddies were dreaming with glee,
Hoping to find surf boards under the tree.

They all knew that Santa was well on his way,
In a fiberglass boat instead of a sleigh.

He whizzed up the rivers, zoomed up the canals,
Delivering toys to good boys and gals.

The tropical moon gave the cities a glow,
And lit the way for Santa below.

Quite soon he arrived and started to work,
He hadn’t a second to linger or shirk.

He jumped from his boat and gave a wee chuckle,
He was dressed in deck pants, with an ivy league buckle.

There weren’t any chimneys, but that caused no gloom,
For Santa came in through the Florida room.

He stopped at each house but stayed only a minute,
As he emptied his sack of the toys that were in it.

Before he departed he had a long drink,
From the glass of fresh orange juice left by the sink.

He turned with a jerk and jumped into his boat,
Knowing that he still had more toys to tote.

He put it in gear and he opened the gas,
Then up the Peace River he went like a flash!

And I heard him exclaim as he went on his way:
“Merry Christmas, Punta Gorda, I wish I could stay …. Annonymous

Santa w- Surf Boards

 

This is turning into a yearly repost due to the Christmas festivities that are going on at this time. I hope you enjoy it again. This was on the radio on Christmas Eve last year. Punta Gorda is a boating town 5 minutes away from me.

Merry Christmas to all ….

May your hearts be filled with magical splendor of the Holiday Season.

Blessings and many Hugs and Kisses to you !!!

Isadora <3 hugs <3


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Coquito – A Traditional Puerto Rican Libation

coquito

 

Coquito is a traditional drink served at Christmas and New Year’s celebrations.

The drink is similar to eggnog.

In many households it was prepared days ahead in order to allow the flavors and the rum to blend well.

This particular recipe does not call for raw eggs.

Nor does it call for you to crack open a fresh coconut; however, if available you can.

It’s a very simple mixed drink.

Coquito is served with pasteles. The recipe for that is here.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Ingredients:

2 -15-ounce cans cream of coconut

2 – 14-ounce cans condensed milk

6 ounces white rum (use less or more if you’d like)

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 teaspoon coconut (or vanilla) extract

Preparation:

1. Mix all ingredients in a blender.

2. Refrigerate for about an hour before serving.

Serve cold with a cinnamon stick as garnish

Serves: This recipe makes about 36 ounces.


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Pasteles – A Traditional Puerto Rican Christmas Recipe

PR_Pasteles_photograph[1]

Pasteles aren’t appealing to the eye but delicious to the palette. There are as many pastele recipes as there are cooks. The recipe changes according to what is grown in the particular region. This is the one I am familiar with. Making and serving pasteles at Christmas time is a Puerto Rican tradition. Its hard work, but well worth the effort. There’s always a gathering of family members for the long and tedious work. As many as 50 to 100 pasteles are made at one time while traditional Christmas songs are played and the adults drink lots of coquito (look for this post).They hold up well in the refrigerator and can be frozen. As a child each one of us had a task. I do not make them but do enjoy eating them when they are available at restaurants or while vacationing on the island of Puerto Rico. They’re only available during the holidays. Pasteles were originally made for the traveling “Parranderos” (carolers). These were people who traveled with their instruments through town on the back of a flatbed truck singing and playing festive songs. Along the way, they would stop at homes where an invite would provide a little coquito and pastele. It was nourishment to help the travelers as they continued on their journey of spreading Christmas cheer. Everyone would laugh and dance as they played while sharing in the true meaning of giving. Having grown up in Brooklyn, New York, I had never experienced this. However, during the one year I attended school in Puerto Rico I learned about these traditions. It showed me another way to celebrate Christmas.    2014©written by Isadora

Pastele

Recipe:

Prep Time: 3 hours

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 4 hours

Ingredients: STUFFING

2 pounds diced pork

4 ajíces dulces (small sweet peppers)

1 small onion

2 tablespoons recaito

4 cloves garlic

1 tablespoon adobo

1 tablespoons oregano (dry flakes)

1 bay leaf MASA DOUGH

4 pounds yautía

6 green bananas

1 tablespoon of salt

achiote oil

 

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WRAPPING:

40 banana leaves (cut into approx. 10 in X 5 in rectangles)

20 Pieces parchment paper (cut into approx. 8 in X 4 in rectangles)

20 Pieces of kitchen string (Cut into 18 inch. lengths)

Preparation:

PART 1 – MAKE THE STUFFING

1. Brown the pork pieces in a pan.

2. Add the rest of the stuffing ingredients.

3. Cook until the pork is no longer pink inside.

4. Set aside and let cool.

PART 2 – MAKE THE MASA DOUGH

1. In a large bowl, peel and grate the yautía and the green bananas together.

2. Stir in the salt and enough achiote oil to moisten the dough and add a little color.

You are now ready to assemble and wrap the pasteles.

PART 3 – WRAP THE PASTELES

 1. Set the dough aside and prepare a work surface to assemble and wrap the pasteles. If you have friends helping you, set up an assembly line.

2. Follow my step-by-step guide to assembling and wrapping pasteles.

3. Set aside the pasteles you are going to eat right away. You can freeze the rest.

PART 4 – COOK THE PASTELES

1. Bring a stock pot of salted water to a boil. There should be enough water to cover the pasteles.

2. Boil the pasteles for 1 hour.

3. Unwrap the pasteles before serving.

Serves: Makes about 20.


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Nurture Yourself – by Loving Yourself

Flower Painting.webPurple Garden    2014©art by Isadora

Often, we have preconceived notions of who we should be based on our need to fit in. It may start early in our lives because we want to be liked or want to be part of the so called in-crowd. We imagine ourselves to be like others if we dress, talk and act like them. We behave and do things we normally wouldn’t do because we don’t like the feeling of being excluded.

Don’t pretend. Be who you are. You are special.

It isn’t selfish to make yourself a priority. It isn’t selfish to take care of yourself. It isn’t selfish to love yourself. For in doing so, you have much more to give to others. More importantly, you have given yourself a far greater gift of love than anyone could ever give you.

Give Yourself Special love Gifts everyday …..

1. Wake in the morning and say – “Today, I love myself more than yesterday”.

2. Dream more while you’re awake – manifesting positive thoughts creates positive energy.

3. Smile – challenge yourself to make 3 people a day smile.

4. Place all past issues where they belong – in the past. Don’t ruin today because of them.

5. Time heals all things eventually. Give time – time.

6. Don’t compare yourself to others. Their lives may not be so special.

7. Spend time with people over70 – they’ve experienced far more than you and can guide.

8, Spend more time with children under 6 – they know how to play and you’ve forgotten.

9. No matter how you feel – get up, get dressed and be a part of the adventures of life.

10. Live with Energy – Enthusiasm – Empathy – Family – Friends – Faith

Be the ship that travels calm waters to places that nourish you. Cruise away from places that keep you from being who you are. Bring people along with you who let you be you. Discard the others since they will only bring your ship down.

Namaste, Isadora  🙏

2014©written by Isadora

 Michel Pépé : La Vision du Coeur

During this holiday season, take a breathe. We can all get overwhelmed with everything that has to be finished. Perhaps, taking a few minutes to listen to this beautiful piano music video of lovely music from Michelle Pepe could be all you need. Happy Festivity time …!!!

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Every Thursday, Becca, hosts Nurturing Thursday. If you’d like to join in – click here

Nurturing Thursday Contributors:

On Dragonfly Wings with Buttercup Tea

Tea & Paper 

Meg Evans

Laurie’s Gentle Healing Notes

Pocket Prospectives

Tao of Scrumble

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