Positive Envy

Yunnan Red Soil Positive Envy-3

There is an old saying I think about every now and then: “the grass is always greener on the other side.”

Not so much for its meaning of someone desiring something they believe would improve his or her life, yet in reality would not.  Instead, it is because I think about where I am now, and the possibilities of what could be.

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To dream of being in a totally different situation, wondering how great life would be compared to the current situation is intriguing.  The mind is unrealistically focused on what could be gained, with little attention to what would be lost.

A poor example of this: my memory as a kid on a family vacation sitting at a restaurant for breakfast. I would always order the French toast and upon the arrival of the food, look on in envy as my twin sister’s stack of blueberry pancakes taunted me…those pancakes topped with whipped cream looked so much better than my wimpy French toast.

Nothing's Changed...

Nothing’s Changed…

Don't I have a GREAT Sister...

Don’t I have a GREAT Sister…

Didn’t matter that I loved French toast and it always tasted great, for I couldn’t think of anything else except my stomach growling with envy.

Fortunately, it never failed that my little sister would give me a small bite of her pancakes to make me happy (and also get a laugh at the whipped cream that would inevitably find its way to the tip of my nose), and life would be good again.

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Such a simple memory, but one of many that demonstrates to me the endless possibilities the mind creates. Hammering home the moral of being happy with what you have and how ridiculous it is to have petty envy.

When positive thinking fuels the mind, things tend to work themselves out.

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Over the years, I think most people come to understand it never pays to feel or act on petty-envy or the negatives that “the grass is always greener…” may inspire.  However, I think envy in itself is not bad, as there is still a piece of this feeling that is worth exploring further: “positive envy.”

Comparing a situation with one that is perceived to be better can create a sense of hope; triggering a new dream to inspire. I find inspiration in stories, movies and photographs from all over the world, where I have this feeling of “the grass is always greener…” but understand I can create something similar in my life.

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Positive Envy is the excitement at discovering something new from another source and creating a drive to move people up to a higher level (no matter how small).

My favorite definition of this feeling is this clip from the movie Vision Quest: seeing and experiencing something so spectacular, that it lifts the spirit to a higher level of existence. Once this emotion is felt, it is impossible not to develop a drive and try to achieve such a moment yourself.

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There are many such vision quests in life, and for me seeing places I may never visit ~ but through photographs, videos and stories, it becomes easy to imagine myself creating a life there. Positive envy of someone experiencing such a different way of life brings adventure into my day.

As mentioned in an earlier writing, Let The Show Begin…, photography, music and sports are just two examples where inspiration thrives.

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Recently, I traveled to Dongchuan, Yunnan in SW China and arranged a home stay; a perfect way to get a glimpse into the life of locals. There were a few older people I met who shared their stories, their struggles and mostly their simple brilliance of happiness that they had collected over their lifetime.

Sharing a part of their history, through their words I could imagine the very time/place/emotions to a point where it felt as if I had lived that life alongside them.

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A very powerful feeling, and while I imagined how great it would be to experience such a place in time; what I appreciated most was the glimpse at the scope of possibilities of people everywhere.

Positive Envy.

Humans have a pretty incredible stretch of capabilities, and while the ideal of accumulating great material wealth is an overriding dream for many…it is usually those who seek a simpler route that find a greater sense of happiness.

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A controlled environment tends to pull us all in one direction: “nose to the grindstone” seems to be its mantra, and it is usually led by a group of elitists restricting our freedoms.

To avoid this lunatic fringe that permeates politics and many parts of society, listen to the words of Joseph Campbell and enter the forest at the darkest point, where there is no path.  Avoid the well-worn path as the road often traveled tends to entice and then subdue the spirit.

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In all, I figure that while the “grass may seem greener elsewhere” we attach ourselves to where we are most comfortable.  It is good to explore, to get out and see what is out there…but in the end, it is tough to beat home.

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Even when things may look bleak, there is always a smile to brighten the day.  I sat one late afternoon watching the energy of this old man, amid a group of locals sharing his stories. “I can’t afford to be sad because right now is all I may have…and I’ve been saying this for more than 10 years!” and he laughed which made everyone laugh.

If the time ever comes when I am missing all my teeth, I’ll accept it…but until then I will make sure to enjoy the feel of biting into a crisp apple during a hot day.

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“The grass is always greener…” It is a difficult proverb to dissect, because there are so many ways to look at it. Here in Dongchuan, most of the people in this village dream of their children being able to live in Hong Kong (or any Chinese metropolis), as these cities have a higher standard of living.

I can understand this. These are significant dreams to have, and it can fuel positive envy: a flow of ideas that lead to a realm of unimaginable successes.  Wherever the dream flows, a happy child is the real goal.

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I suppose that is the magic of life. At some point in time, it is necessary for the soul to search and begin its own Vision Quest.  To lift those around you to a higher level of happiness.  What that quest is and where it flows varies greatly among us all.

With that said, sometimes the grass is actually greener, and if possible, worth checking out for yourself.

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Yunnan Red Soil Positive Envy-4

196 Comments on “Positive Envy

  1. Hello Dalo,

    Another masterpiece, what else should I say 🙂

    I am brimming with “positive envy” for the places you had been to and for the incredible images that you have created.

    I do agree with your views own positive envy, and feels, that’s s great driving force, to explore and excel.

    Thank you so much for the thoughts and images, shared 🙂

    Have a great day 🙂

    • Thanks for the very nice comment Sreejith, Dongquan was a landscaper’s paradise ~ the red soil made for great shooting, and small town hospitality is always pretty top-notch. Trips like that always makes me want to go out and explore some more. Cheers!

  2. Positive envy is a useful to learn and improve oneself. For one, I would like to learn photography and your photos are great examples, crips and clear. The photos are very cheerful that these people are happy the way they are. I bet you, they will become unhappy should they move in North America. No green grasses here. Question: how come they look more Tibetan.

    Thank you for sharing your photos and insights.

    • Thank you Seeker, it was a nice trip. The locals are one of China’s minorities (I think Dai or Zhuang), agree they look more Tibetan. Yunnan is a great place to see the different cultures in China.

  3. I couldn’t agree more with you about positive envy. I believe it’s one of the most important things humans need to have to progress, to excel, and at the end of the day, to be happy. Dreams and innovations are all based on positive envy. A beautiful piece of writing, Randall, accompanied with amazing photographs!

    • Thanks Bama, you make such an important point how we need to have progress if not for any reason other than being happy at the end of the day. Cheers, as you know there is something about traveling and learning about a different culture…pretty inspiring.

  4. I have positive envy of your photography Randy! And in fact Iately I’m bearing in mind your photos when I’m trying to make my own. Thanks for the lovely story with your sister and sharing the cute photos. As much as I love french toast, I”m sure I would have ordered the blueberry pancakes 😉 Which “home” are you talking about here? Cheers!

    • It is such a good feeling to have positive envy, it makes me want to improve, and it is great seeing all the great/creative blogs like yours that inspire. Good of you to order the blueberry pancakes…you’d share too I think 🙂 It is funny that you mention home, I think I will have to rely on that old cowboy’s reply of “wherever I lay my head at night…” Take care, enjoy the week.

      • I’ll share if you also share some of the French toast 🙂

      • Can we order both things each? (I went for a jog this morning, so it should be ok)

  5. Wow, incredible and diverse collection you´ve made (once again)! Very inspirational in subject and photography (including PP) techniques!

    • Thank you, the landscape was some of the most unique I’ve seen (the red soil so intense). Also met some great people, which always makes the shooting that much more enjoyable. One of those places I hope to return soon!

  6. Another great set of photos from you, and another great piece of writing too, Randall. The grass is greener on the other side…such a cliched saying. If we ever think that way (and I’m sure a lot of us do), for a moment we stop being positive – and you’re right in that we feel petty envy or jealously. I always believe we can be happy at any moment in time if we appreciate the small things around us and make the best of the pieces that we have.

    Positive thinking. Fuel to our hopes and dreams. Also a trait that can make us over-confident and un-realistic. But then again, we miss all the shots we don’t take. Simple as that 🙂

    • Funny you say that Mabel, as it is a such a cliche saying and I didn’t want to use it (but rather use the idea behind it), but I kept getting away from what was “in my mind” versus what I was writing down… I had wanted to write more on what you mentioned “over-confidence and unrealistic expectations make us miss opportunities” of seeing places like Dongquan and the great way of life they have 🙂 Wish you a great week.

      • Sometimes we resort to using cliches because that’s the only way to get a point across and articulate what we’re feeling. I suppose that’s why you did. Your photos show the simple life out in the country in China – everyone’s doing their bit to harvest crops and they actually look happy doing what they do. That’s the simple life. Little expectations and settling for what you have.

        Have a good weekend 🙂

  7. To join with several of your other readers here, Randall, I have positive envy of you. And I am far the better for it. Thank you.

    • Hi Ann, that is such a beautiful comment and goes right to the heart of the post. A pretty strong blogging community we have, so much out there to inspire. Thank you!

  8. One of the interesting things about your posting so infrequently Randall, is that I so look forward to seeing your work when it finally appears! I loved this one (as all of your others) as it reminded me of my own visit to the Rice Terraces. They are just so glorious and each season is so different. My verdant greens vs your (presumably)autumnal reds-each fabulous in their own way. And again, as always, you have captured the sould of the people in your shots. The toothless man is priceless!! Truly wonderful–you are an artist!

    • The timing of this post is a bit funny, as I wanted to post earlier in July but was traveling, and then I realized it was the 31st and thought “I need to write in July” 🙂 Thank you Tina for your comment, it is so nice to read ~
      You are right, the rice terraces are spectacular around Asia, and as you say, each season would bring out something so unique and beautiful. I think spring would be tremendous (I like the greens of a new beginning). The soil/landscape in this part of Yunnan (Red Soil Land) was incredible (a bit similar to the Palouse country in Eastern Washington).

    • Couldn’t agree more, taking the time to put things into perspective an important part. Thank you R.

  9. Dalo, I enjoyed your post very much! Its poetic wisdom and wonderful photos are inspiring! I especially like concept of uplifting “positive envy” and “while the ideal of accumulating great material wealth is an overriding dream for many…it is usually those who seek a simpler route that find a greater sense of happiness”. Best to you!

    • Thanks Vance ~ amazing how looking at things a bit differently can have such an impact. Cheers.

  10. Another beautiful, thought provoking post. As you say, if we look, we can find positive envy. That which can guide us toward positive change. As opposed to envy, which usually has an negative, destructive effect.

    This reminds me of another expression: “Bloom where you are planted.”

    Thanks Randall.

    • I like that expression Ron, “bloom where you are planted” ~ be true to who you are. Much significance, thank you.

  11. Hello Randall,
    Wow…I am left speechless by your amazing photos and your words. “Positive envy” – I have never heard of this expression, but it describes perfectly what I feel so often 😉 Thank you so much for this amazing post, I’ll be thinking about it for a long time.
    PS – the photos of you when you were a young child are so adorable!

    • Thank you Takami, very nice to hear…it is such a good feeling to have, gives me a reason to seek out the good of every day 🙂 Take care.

  12. @Randall, I wait …wait and wait….when you come with your fantastic photo shot, and here they are. I admire and enjoyed very much, the incredible photo shot, stunning! Beautiful rice field, spectaculr ! Thank you very much dear friend, for wonderful photos sharing.

    • Thank you, I have felt positive envy at your photos quite often, nothing quite like finding inspiration from those around us. Cheers!

  13. I envy you for your photographing skill, your calm philosophical mind, your courage, your… Not sure it is a positive envy or negative 😉

    Seriously, I am inspired by this post and I enjoy every photo you have here. I wish there is a video/post on your trip: how you find a place, arrange the trip, where you stay (the place), the interaction between you and locals… I am attracted by the whole story and like to hear all the details. It’s a wonderful story.

    Thanks for sharing.

    • Thank you Helen. Sometimes that is the great thing about travel, when I do not expect to shoot ~ there comes an opportunity and I just dive right in. Other times I have great plans for a shoot, at it fizzles into nothing (and usually a bit of disappointment as well). Trekking all my gear all over the place can be painful, but it is worth it when something comes along (and I always like to leave a day or two of any travel in anticipation of such moments). Cheers to you, and I really would like to shoot video… 🙂

      • >> Trekking all my gear all over the place can be painful, but it is worth it when something comes along

        Ah… that’s one reason I didn’t shoot great photos like you do 😉

        I hope you do shoot video one of these days – for one, to record your photo trip so we know your process. Ha. Please announce it on your blog when you do. I certainly don’t want to miss it.

      • Ha, ha…it never fails, I bring several lens, filters, extra body and use none of it. However, it’s those rare moments when a different lens/filter is just what I need. I’m patiently waiting for Canon to come out with a nice lightweight, mirror-less camera, as that would be a great tool when it comes to traveling. What do you shoot with?

  14. An absolutely tantalizing post. Words and gorgeous images. Wow.
    The grass is very very green here at the moment – lots of sunshine and rain! My little garden plot seems like a lot of work until I think about the amount of effort required to care for those terraces of rice, I think they are rice anyway. The aesthetics of the landscaping are breathtaking.

    • Thanks Karen, I too marvel at the amount of time & effort people take to create both gardens & rice terraces and it shows that it is a labor of love (and nature). Beautiful to see, although must agree that the life of farmers requires a strong soul. Take care.

  15. Stunning post Randall! Your photography is truly remarkable. You always manage to capture the beauty of every places that you visited. The thoughts behind it is so humble and humanist. Thank you for sharing your beautiful photos and thoughts with us.

    • Isn’t this one of the best things about travel, meeting people who are kind and open up about their life/culture…makes me always want to come back 🙂 Thank you very much Indah for your great words. Cheers.

  16. “In all, I figure that while the “grass may seem greener elsewhere” we attach ourselves to where we are most comfortable.  It is good to explore, to get out and see what is out there…but in the end, it is tough to beat home.”

    I love everything about this thought…

    You know, when I finally get through my emails today and find yours as the last one I have to open I get a little flutter in my chest. Yes, because I am happy to see a post from you, but also because it could have been the first one I read this morning. And didn’t. However, left wondering if I somehow new you were around. 😉 A bit of dawn’s early reading, if you will. I’ll take the surprise however it comes, I suppose, Dalo.

    …the possibilities of what could be.” This poet thinks about those what could be’s all the time. Positive envy is a rational way of weeding through our thoughts of greener grass, Randall. I could be lost in your words for days. You bring so much in one post. I can’t possibly write out all my thoughts. I would bore you to death.

    Then, I move on to where you roam and I have a million more words I want to write out. Ahh! Can I ride on your shoulder? Please? I could take notes… 😉

    Stellar photos, as always. I love the way you capture a face. (Cute baby pictures, by the way. Breakfast food is my favorite food of all time. Serve pancakes, waffles or french toast and I’ll give ya anything you want.)

    The toothless smile is my favorite. I would work hard at never wiping that smile off his face. The photo fifth from the bottom is my favorite landscape shot…a beautiful place to wake up to, I fear. Now, I’m left working on positive envy…

    • “…happy to see a post from you, but also because it could have been the first one I read this morning. And didn’t.” That may be the best compliment I’ve receive on my photography/writing, as I too will do the same in anticipation.

      The idea of Positive envy is a rational way of weeding through our thoughts of greener grass is a good one, there is something poetic in trying to rationalize all that we think/feel during the day/week/month…of course telling this to a poet is somewhat a moot point, discussion best left to a pint of ale and a lot of time to kill 🙂

      You have a good eye in terms of photos, the shot you like (5th from the bottom) is an area where photographers from around China/Asia will flock to shoot, as in the 90s a group of Chinese photographers shot this area and received tons of acclaims on their work. Their work is spectacular ~ capturing both great lighting/shadows and the unique red-soil of the area. I shall return 🙂

      Thanks Audrey for the nice comment, and with all my photography equipment I carry around, putting you on my shoulders wouldn’t be a problem 🙂 Cheers.

      • I can’t help it. Your posts are like the last of the chocolate cake. I just sit and watch it and then dive in. All this waiting is a great way to keep your reader needing to hear more from you. I’m glad you see my actions in a positive way, Dalo.

        A poetic dreamer must figure out a way to think rationally or we’d all hop a plane to China. Then we’d have to fit in a lot more than just ale and killing time, my dear. 😉

        Yes, my father has always said that I have a way of spotting the champagne for all the beer in the room. Haha! 🙂 It really is a breathtakingly good spot. Your photo is gorgeous, Randall. It is very cool that you can and will return. Working hard at not envying negatively.

        Allow me to carry the equipment, Dalo. You just worry about carrying a blushing redhead on your shoulders. We have a lot of ground to cover. 😉 Have a great night, you.

      • I can very much relate to the chocolate cake analogy ~ when I find a site/scene to shoot, it is hard for me not to head there immediately and check it out…but knowing I should wait until I get the lighting I want. Carrying the equipment? Deal! 🙂

  17. Many positive perspectives to contemplate here. In their simplicity, three spoke clearly to me, Randall: 1) “Their simple brilliance of happiness.” 2) The under-appreciated and oft-unexplored realm of possibilities and; 3) The prospect of ‘discomfort’ yielding amazingly unanticipated moments, if one chooses to ‘be’ with a bit of unease.

    For these reminders and much more, including stellar photographs, I am appreciative. Your posts invite reflection and heighten the reality of what *is* possible.

    • Really like how you clearly layout these three perspectives…succinct and almost signaling that to progress, adventures are needed. Thank you Eric for such a great comment.

  18. These words you wrote….quote; seeing and experiencing something so spectacular, that it lifts the spirit to a higher level of existence. Once this emotion is felt, it is impossible not to develop a drive and try to achieve such a moment yourself, Just made my day! You have a wonderful full contrast in your images and there is a fragile moment in all of them. it looks like you have a gentle approach to people when you portray them. Just Wonderfull!

    • Sometimes just kicking back and talking with locals is the highlight of a trip, and on the occasion when I can draw the camera out ~ I feel lucky. Thank you Belinda, very happy to hear the photos/writing touched you.

  19. grass will always look greener on the other side. i have to say though, now that i’ve moved to portland, i feel that i’m living on the greener side (pun intended)! the point is, life is how you make it to be. you can live in the most exciting city in the world but take the same route everyday or you can live in a “quiet” city like portland and make every weekend feels like a vacation! well, at least that’s what i’ve been doing. gorgeous photos btw, absolutely love them! 🙂

    • Nothing like the Pacific NW, I think always knowing this place is here makes it easier to go anywhere as I always have a great home to return to 🙂 I am always amazed at how much there is to see & do. Thank you and wish you a great weekend!

  20. Your photos always leave me speechless. Absolutely amazing, both the images and the writing. Thanks for inspiring us!

  21. Gorgeous photos Randall. And your words again add a wonderful complement and story to weave them together. I might quibble with the words “positive envy”. I’d prefer simple inspiration, which your words and photos offer, as do others who inspire the mind and heart with how they live. Many great life lessons in this post too. Thanks Randall.

    • Thanks Brad. Yes, one of the great things of travel is sharing inspiration with the people met; getting a little taste of something you can’t quite have. Happy you enjoyed the photos and a good point about the word choice. Cheers!

    • Thank you! This shot was troubling as I was in the mountains there with wind…and wanted a very shallow DOF, so blur/clarity were a big issue. The shot did not turn out what I wanted, but I did get the unique bokeh so happy 🙂

  22. What you call positive envyI think is absolutely necessary for any development. I also totally agree with you, that we should live in the now and be content with what we have in the now, but without any positive envy, we will stand still. But yes when the feeling of the grass is greener on the other side becomes petty envy, it’s all negative energy. As for the photos of this post, they are amazing as always. You are not only a master of light, but the way you capture people, show respect and sincere compassion. My favourite is the one with the old lady and the boy. Simply wonderful.

    • Thank you Otto, it is great when photography blends in with the story around you. The old lady and the boy were so nice…waiting for his parents, and this too is my favorite shot. Cheers.

  23. you took us to the world of Feed Masters – Great farmers.
    their love towards the land not comparable
    it is the place where the seeds of hopes sprouts
    beautiful photography
    all best wishes
    with regards

  24. Very beautiful pictures and words dear Randal 🙂

  25. You’ve done it again, Randall. Absolutely amazing!

  26. I love everything about this post. Not only are your images stunning – but every time I read your blog, I get sense that I’m stuffed somewhere down in your backpack where I can get a glimpse of the world through a different set of eyes- so thanks for a broader view- it’s beautiful as ever!
    By the way- I choose French toast over pancakes every time! It’s by far my favorite!! 

    • A French toast lover, gotta like that…we’d get along well. Thanks for the words, getting a glimpse into something new via photos/writing is always special, the power of blogs. Wish you a great weekend!

    • Thank you, nothing quite like finding great places/people to shoot. I do speak Mandarin Chinese, which has gone a long ways in helping my photography & learning more about this great place. So much to see, probably a good place to do a rotation 🙂

  27. These pictures are stunning, and exquisitely professional. 🙂 Nice to meet you, Randall! Cheerz, Uncle Tree

  28. Hello Randy 🙂 I could have sworn I posted my comments two days ago, but I guess I wrote it, but never pressed post comments,lol

    Well, this is yet another beautiful reminder of all that is worthwhile in life. Personally I always believed that phrase, the grass is always greener, is a general human crutch,lol

    I must confess, I’m filled with Positive envy of the many beautiful worlds you create, and the one you live 🙂

    You have managed yet again, to find good in an otherwise awful word, envy. Positive envy is something which resonates in every single one of us..I think.
    Once again you have captured beauty beyond words with these photos, of which my absolute favorites are the ones with a handsome lad in the tiny sailors hat, and the kid further down warming by the fire.
    The lad in the hat because it’s the cutest you ever, and the kid by the fire because all I see in her eyes is hope and wonder of a beautiful future. Those eyes could never conceive the notion of envy, at least not in a harmful or negative way. To borrow from your words, “wherever the dream flows, a happy child is the real goal” The kid in everyone of us keeps bursting out regardless of our demons, especially yours my man,lol

    May our dreams keep flowing.

    • Thank you Dotta for the nice words! It is a strange thing to have envy, but also a part of human nature…and I agree that to admire and be inspired by this feeling and turn it into a positive is a great thing (and another human trait). Travel and meeting people seem to do this for me.

      As four favorite photo choices, the kid in the sailor hat was a terror…:-) Best stick with the one by the fire…and yes those eyes are something else. Yes indeed, keep our dreams flowing.

  29. unbelievable pictures. . . . I saw woman and children working in rice paddies in India. . . what a hard backbreaking job !

    • Thank you Anne, such a difficult life, but I was also moved by their great spirit/smiles and the openness in which they talked about their fields and life 🙂

  30. Dalo, between your thoughts and your photos, I was just spellbound. Your photography is a Masterpiece in of itself, and how you bring such uplifting stories and thoughts in with your photography, is so inspiring. I enjoyed your post SO much and with it, brought many thoughts of my own. So many always see that the “other side of the fence” is better, instead of realizing, it is with a change in attitude toward the Life one has now, that makes all the difference. To live simply and Joyfully too many in this world do not achieve, for they are forever working in a system that tears their authenticity to pieces and disconnects them from Nature. Thank you again for this post. And thank you for how you are positively affecting this world with your work. Bless you. Love, Amy

    • Thank you Amy, such an inspirational comment ~ truly wonderful. It is pretty uplifting when “we” realize how lucky and how good life is, even when it is not our greatest day 🙂 Cheers!

      • I am reading a book right now, Dalo, that is truly helping me realize that once we Master our thoughts and change our perspectives on Life, anything is truly possible. It is mostly our thougths and our patterned conditionings that keep us prisoners of our own making, whether we are aware or not. I was thinking of adding quotes from this book on some of my future posts, for if they are helping me, they could very much help others. And that, my friend, is what it is all about for me. To help others, and share what I have and know. With Love, Amy

  31. You considered the very things I’ve been exploring the past 12 months even through this wk. Dreams, hope, raising the bar on yourself, exploring boundaries. And one of my favorite words, possibility. Do you speak Chinese fluently, RC? That is amazing you’re able to collect such precious narratives, personal histories from the people there. A well-known pastor in the States has said you are as happy as your child. The pix are just amazing as always, esp the one of the field right under your kid shots. And I understand it’s hard to capture fire w/ the camera. Your flame is beautiful (literally and not). =)

    Shoot me an email if you’re interested in guest authoring. I’m not sure it’ll work out, for the distinctives of your posts and presentation, but we can talk if you’d like. No obligation.

    Diana

    • Wonderful comment Diana. I was just talking with one of my best friends in HK the other day ~ the gist of the conversation was that as adult, our primary goal is to ensure the happiness of children as they will then grow up with a love for life (and can deal better with any ups & downs life inevitable throws their way).

      There is also not a better feeling than to know a child is happy and you have played a role in that happiness ~ not a very complex thought 🙂 Exploring and understanding is a nice path to take, and in China being able to speak Mandarin has been essential. Thank you very much. Cheers!

      • It is the simplest things about children that remind us that the simplest things are the weightiest – what matter!

      • Wanted to make sure you received my email w/ the the guest writing info. Emails to/fro other guests have actually disappeared in my communications w/ bloggers, leaving one of us to think the other was not interested.

      • Thanks D., I will send you an email (just returned from travel). Cheers!

  32. You had a precious opportunity to do a home stay – and it looks like you connected, and certainly brought back some wonderful images for us to feel positively envious about – and to be inspired by.

    • Thank you, yes the home stay was pretty lucky…a friend from Hangzhou set me up there, worked out so well 🙂

  33. “An entire sea of water can’t sink a ship unless it gets inside the ship. Similarly, the negativity of the world can’t put you down unless you allow it to get inside you.”
    Well, the negativity of the world will never win over you as it seems….I am sure about this. If you will ever loose sight of beauty, the child within you will bring you back to all these things that you show us here to nourish our hearts.
    No, I do not envy you; I simply admire what you do.

    • Thank you Luana…wonderful quote, great thought ~ getting back to the mind of a child would do the world well 🙂 The admiration is mutual. Wish you a great week!

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