Stories and Limiting Beliefs – Rain Drops and Wood Knots – Picture to Ponder v5-46.

by Sheila Finkelstein on December 18, 2009

Earlier this week, when I put together the mailing on Nature Art Gifts, I stated that I would follow up with the story on ease and synchronicity. It’s really a simple story. Yet the “weight” of writing “the right thing,” and the other “stories” I’ve been creating during this week, have resulted in a huge delay. I am now sending this issue of Picture to Ponder out now, simply because I said I would.

First story – Once I decided to create the one-stop-shopping page, I needed a header with an expressive picture. I went to the folder that has the almost 1,500 plus photos used in Picture to Ponder during the past five years and the Feral Parrot, featured 3 1/2 years ago, seemed to open itself out of nowhere. He seemed to be representing inquiry and appreciation. So I went with the photo, extending the background to fill the desired space for the banner.

Next, I decide I wanted to use a different font and I clicked on the first one that caught my eye. Never used by me before, it was perfect!

The bottom line – a simple story of what can happen when we let go of needing to know how something is going to look.

Further “stories” that occupied my week revolved in large part around my 70th birthday being on Thursday. I had been making the number mean, I am “old” despite my looking younger and feeling a lot younger than my internal, past-based conversations of what “70” is/would be.

Then because I was open, as a result of the morning walk discussed below,  I could hear who I am reflected by coach Sue Stebbins in a teleclass call yesterday. I was able to accept and start owning that my experience, creativity and youthfulness are all strengths with which I can position myself.

Also, underlying my earlier expectations of what my day was going to be like was the fact that Sam is no longer here to celebrate this milestone. I was certain I was going to be “tearing-up” throughout the day.  When I woke up in the morning, I decided a shift in routine might help; so I went a morning walk at Wakodahatchee Wetlands.

Today’s Photos constitute the story of the walk that did result in a dramatic energy shift, setting up a great celebratory day.

Shortly into my walk at Wakodahatchee, I noticed remnants of raindrops hanging down from the boardwalk railing. “Oh, my tears,” thought I. So I pulled the camera out of my bag and started photographing.

Further along my walk it started drizzling and the camera went back into the bag. Once under a covered area on the boardwalk I got under my umbrella, took the camera out and used the movie setting to record the “tears” creating ripples in the water. Listen closely and you can hear the sounds of birds.

It stopped raining and I continued my walk, going right passed something that caught my eye on one of the boards underneath. Then I heard my inner voice, “Stop. Go back. Whenever something catches their eyes, you teach people to pause and photograph it.” So the camera came out again and I turned around.

I took several photos along the board, getting particularly excited with the one above that looks like a soaring bird with neck stuck way out.

Going to the other side of the plank, the same image now looks like a snake coming at me. Or, perhaps it’s a turtle swimming toward us.

Yesterday’s photographing ended with my pointing out the images in the wood knots to a passing couple. They immediately saw what I saw and more and proceeded to tell me that there is a “lion” that can’t me missed on the boardwalk in a section of Green Cay Wetlands. I was assured that it is quite obvious.

Though I’ve walked at Green Cay countless times, I have not seen the lion. It’s now on my list to seek out, once the weather clears.

I am grateful that I live so close to these wonderful Nature walks and in the weather to enjoy them year round. I am also grateful to my family and friends. Having set it up with my walk to be such, it turned out to be a great day of celebrating going into my 8th decade!!

Self-Reflecting Queries
Today’s issue is really a demonstration of “limiting beliefs” and choices that can be made to stay in negative spaces or create shifts beyond.

As you know, I use my camera and encourage you to do the same. If you have not seen, or read it for a while, you can find “7 Tips for Getting Out of a Funk” on eZine Articles.

I invite you to find, and make note of, the tools you use to get unstuck. Are there situations now around which you are “spinning” negative stories? Things you are reluctant to do? Or face? If so, I invite you to find the actions that will create shifts for you.

Holidays are very difficult for many of us. Should you be in that situation, I wish you an easy, happy way to make a change in that state for you.

As always, have fun with this. Stories can be lots of fun, especially when we create happy endings.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Rick Rosendahl December 18, 2009 at 9:42 pm


I feel inspired by your words and photos. It is tough to walk here in the cold of winter but just the same my eye is getting keener throughout my travels.

Thanks for the inspiration,


PS: I run a woodworking forum called routerforums and my blog called I have been talking about producing custom made paint boxes decorated with the water slide decals. These decals use photographs to create the finishing touches to the woodworker’s creations.

I was looking for some lessons for the point and shoot camera operator and I was intrigued with your tele-seminars. Can you give me more information?

Most of my readers are woodworker first but most likely own a point and shoot camera. Can I advertise your next course to my group? If so please advise?

Again thanks for being on the web.

Regards, Rick


Sheila Finkelstein December 18, 2009 at 11:53 pm

Hi Rick,

Thanks for your comments. I watched your first video. I was impressed. It’s a great video and halfway through I started laughing. The underside of the first router looks like a face. If you’ve been subscribing to Picture to Ponder for a while, you know I see faces in a lot of things.

Thanks for your query on my Point and Shoot Photo Courses – I will be setting the schedule for the next sessions sometime next week. I appreciate your interest in informing your group about the course. I do have an affiliate program. I will PM you.



adelita December 19, 2009 at 10:23 am

As I remember “70” was just the start of the beginning of the wisdom fun.
adela – the whooping crone.


Sheila Finkelstein December 19, 2009 at 11:23 am

Smiling. Thanks, Adela, for the greetings and reminder. As always loving the beauty of the photos you create with your photography and photoshop – Will you be posting some new ones Soon.

With appreciation and love,


Peggy Kemp December 20, 2009 at 1:16 pm

Dear Sheila,

Happy Birthday! You exemplify a young persona to me – always exploring, sharing freely, trying new things. And you’re so regular about your postings, which is something I’m striving to emulate on my own blog, and not getting anywhere near. This post is really spot-on – what we determine to be our reality BECOMES our reality, so better be careful what we think and say about it.

I’m missing loved ones on this holiday, too, but feeling them near as I go about gardening, creating beaded snowflakes, and decorating for Christmas.

You have certainly influenced the way my husband Matt and I look at and photograph nature. We are seeing faces – tikis – everywhere.

Thanks for being who you are! You grace the world.


Sheila Finkelstein December 20, 2009 at 8:14 pm

Hi Peggy.

Thank you so much for your birthday wishes and kind comments and acknowledgment of me. I also appreciate your “praising” my “regularity”. I’ve committed to my readers to do a weekly Picture to Ponder and so, out of my “saying so”, I do it.

I can’t believe I started out at 4 times a week, then two. Have you been around that long…. as a subscriber I mean? One blog you might enjoy that’s super regular is
Lani Garity’s

I appreciate your sharing that I’ve had an influence on the way you and your husband now look at and photograph nature. And thanks for the laugh… your now “seeing faces – tikis – everywhere.” I’m grinning again when I re-read
that comment. Why not post some of the photos on your blog. And, be sure and let us know when you do.

Have a great Christmas and a delightful, joyful, healthy and prosperous New Year.

With love and appreciation,



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