Tuesday, August 20, 2013

A Fine Balancing Act

Thought for the day:  The best and safest thing is to keep a balance in your life, acknowledge the great powers around us and in us. If you can do that, and live that way, you are a wise man. [Euripides]

Balance. It's a noble goal, isn't it? Even for clumsy people like me, who would never aspire to, say, walk across the street on a high wire or juggle chain saws, true balance is achievable. Not juggling for klutzes kinda balance, but balance in the deeper sense of the word. Juggling responsibilities and priorities, and meeting the needs of others, as well as yourself. A judicious use of time and resources.







Then, there's the amazing balancing acts we sometimes see in nature. You may have seen some of them. Like this giant rock that seems to defy the laws of gravity.








And then there's a fella named Michael Grab. Since 2008, he's been doing some amazing rock balancing of his own, much of it in the Boulder, Colorado area. Part spiritual, part therapeutic, part art, he's managed to create some rock structures you've gotta see to believe.







Grab says the most fundamental secret to balancing rocks is to start by finding some kind of a tripod for the rock to stand on


He says every rock has some sort of indentations, varying in size from very small to very large.



These indentations serve as the tripods, which either allow a rock to stand upright...


... or to fit in perfect  balance with other rocks.


By paying close attention to them, he gets a feel for the rocks.



He feels the tiniest clicks as he brings the rocks into contact with each other...


... and their notches mesh.




It's as though he performs a sacred dance with nature...



... putting these rocks in their rightful places, into balanced relationships with other rocks. Creating asymmetrical symmetry. Forging connections between the animate and the inanimate.






Creating one-of-a-kind works of art.

Finding within himself a sense of peace, and experiencing a natural balance within the universe.

He says, Parallel to the physical element of finding tripods, the most fundamental non-physical element is harder to explain through words. In a nutshell, I am referring to meditation, or finding a zero point or silence within yourself. Some balances can apply significant pressure on your mind and your patience. The challenge is overcoming any doubt that may arise.


                                                   Would you like to see him at work?


                                        And an even shorter piece, showing more of his pieces:



                                   Amazing stuff, huh? How do your balancing skills... stack up?
                                    Tell ya what. Ain't no way I'm playing Jenga with this dude.

                                                     For more info, see his website.

                                 Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.

P.S. Talking about balancing acts, there's a fine line between casually mentioning my book every once in a blue moon and running around shoving it in everyone's faces while screeching, "BUY this, my pretties!" So I try to play it cool, ya know? Oh yeah... I'm cool; I'm cool. But that doesn't mean I can't jump up and down and shake the pom poms about somebody ELSE'S book that's getting released all over the place tomorrow, right? A really really GOOD book. Sassy, sexy, funny, and fun, with plenty of adventure. I'm talking about Linda Grimes' second book featuring delightful human chameleon Ciel Halligan. I'm telling ya, Linda out-Evanovich's Evanovich. You should be able to find a copy of Quick Fix in most bookstores, some libraries, as well as on Amazon. Same for Linda's first book, In a Fix. I'm not screeching here, my pretties. Just saying... I think you'd enjoy her books. I sure did.

Oh, wait, WAIT! Stop the presses! I have another cool tidbit for ya. I just heard that Amazon is currently offering Jennifer Shirk's book Kissing Kendall for the paltry sum of ninety-nine cents. Considered a sweet romance, it really is sweet... and romantic. Oh, and did I happen to mention it's only ninety-nine cents? But not for long... so if you haven't already read this book, you might wanta get it now while it's only... yep, ninety-nine cents.

Okay, I'm really going now. (Doggone it, how can you miss me if I never go away???)

                             Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.


128 comments:

  1. Oh Susan. I am in awe. That is so very beautiful. As a world class klutz it seems impossible to me - but the beauty and harmony of his work have seeped into my hurting heart. Thank you. Many times thank you.

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    1. I'm glad you liked it, Sue. The beauty and harmony of his work really spoke to me, too. Um, not out loud, mind you. I'm not that nuts yet. But there's definitely something very soothing about his work, and especially about watching him work. 'Course, the new age music helped create the mood, too.

      Really, I'm glad you liked it.

      Delete
  2. Replies
    1. Isn't he? Such patience and balance. The patience I could maybe bring off, but I'm happy when I successfully stack the grandkids' wooden blocks...

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  3. Good balancing act, so he's a rock-sensitive, I guess. I like the photos. That sphere is intriguing and looks very futuristic.

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    1. I don't know if you made that word up or not, but it's a good one. "Rock-sensitive" is a perfect description for his uncanny ability.

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  4. You always find the most unusual things to write about! I agree that his work is astounding! Best of luck to Linda and Jennifer! Oh and that Flett Swiderski gal is a pretty talented author too!

    Julie

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    1. Yeah, ya never know what you're gonna find here, eh? ( I think that just means I have a short attention span!)

      Thanks! Shalom.

      Delete
  5. It is so amazing what some people can achieve... he believes he can do this and he does... All I can say is WOW... incredible:)

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    1. Sounds like somebody else I know. Look at you. You decided to believe in yourself, and just look at what you've achieved! Dare I say it? Yeah, you know I will... you're a "rock star" in your own right.

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  6. That's breathtaking.

    And yay for new books! Your's is starting to, shall we say, get a little dogeared from me rereading it and the family sharing it. hee Best book EVAH!

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    1. Glad ya like the rocks.

      Thanks. Sweetest thing to say EVAH!

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  7. The rocks are amazing! I really like that universal sphere. The only way I could even attempt that is with a giant tube of superglue.
    Quick Fix...added to my list.

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    1. Aren't they? I wouldn't even trust myself to attempt that with a giant tube of superglue. I'd probably end up stuck to the rocks for eternity.

      Great! I think you'll love it!

      Delete
  8. What amazes me is how this chap got started on this rock art to begin with? What was it that inspired him? He certainly is brilliant at what he does. Thank you so much for sharing with us. It certainly is deserving of WOW!!!

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    1. Evidently, the art of rock balancing dates back to primitive times, although not as artistic as what Michael creates today. I guess he decided to try his hand at it one day, and discovered a natural affinity for it. I'm glad you found it as amazing as I did.

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  9. Ah, if only I could balance my life as well as Michael balances those rocks. I initially suspected that he used Crazy Glue. It's beyond incredible that he only uses gravity and ingenuity. And patience.

    There's nothing wrong with mentioning your book FAR more often than once in a blue moon. If you have it, FLAUNT it (I speak from experience.....).

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    1. If only we ALL could balance our lives as well as he does those rocks.

      Nuh-uh. If I ever tried to do any flaunting as a young girl, my grandmother, mother, and/or aunts would knock me upside the head. Many lumps later, I learned my lesson. (Besides, I don't look nearly as good in a mini skirt as I used to...)

      Delete
  10. Oh, one more thing, Susan (while I have your attention). I only have notes for the autobiography of my Hollywood years. It isn't complete yet.

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    1. So whatcha waiting for? Do it, cowboy! Lose yourself in writing, and you won't be so distressed about what's going on in your back yard. (So to speak.)

      Delete
  11. Wow, amazing - love the analogy! Balance so key to everything in life.

    Isn't it hard to know when to flaunt it and when to step back and hope folks notice - hey she has a book too! Yeah, the negatives and positives of social media. My books out there and I'm flaunting it today. Thanks for your humorous comment on Alex's blog. Made me laugh - seizure, yeah, I can relate!

    Love the title of your book! Was just thinking this morning that maybe instead of making lemonade out of the lemons life presents - I'd just grab a bottle of Tequila! Might go down easier and I wouldn't have to fuss over just the right bitter to sweet combo! Have a great Tuesday!

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    1. Thanks, Yolanda. I'm glad you liked it.

      I'm not comfortable tooting my own horn; I'm much happier when other people do it for me. (Yep, I'm a lazy old broad.)

      Good luck with the re-launch of your book. That's such an exciting development for you. (People, check on Yolanda's blog to find out about HER book... it started out as a self-published work, but it's SO GOOD, it's been picked up by a publisher, and is now hitting the world anew! I guess you could say it's "open under new management.")

      Tequila? Nah, I don't think so. I prefer bourbon. And, um, you can hold the lemonade... Thanks so much for stopping by, and for signing on as a new follower. I do appreciate it, dear lady. Welcome aboard!

      Delete
  12. Those pictures are amazing! I love rocks and we do rock walls, pathways and a few Stonehenge type sculptures in our yard but nothing like that. So cool.

    I just finished Quick Fix. Very. Good. Book.

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    1. Aw, thanks. Much appreciated. :)

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    2. Glad ya liked the pictures. Too cool that you do Stonehenge kinda stuff in your yard... how's about posting some pics of them some time?

      Yes. Very. Good. Indeed.

      Delete
  13. We have a guy near my house that does the rock sculpture too. Not quite as impressive as Michael's, but cool nonetheless.

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    1. Oh neat. It'd be very therapeutic just to watch him. (And hint, hint, hint: take some pictures!)

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  14. This is simply amazing...I can't miagine how much patience this takes. The picture of the three bricks is fascinating!

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    1. Glad ya like it. You seem to be very attuned to nature. Who knows? Maybe you'd be a natural at this sort of thing.

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  15. Wow! Almost unbelievable. Thanks so much for sharing.

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    1. Isn't it? My pleasure. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

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  16. Those photos are CRAZY. If I ever stumbled upon one of his works of art in nature I'd be convinced demons did it. Impressive.

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    1. No, no, no! It's all about positive thinking! Think ANGELS, not demons!

      But it's even more impressive that a "regular guy" with a lot of patience did it.

      Delete
  17. Buy this my pretties you say
    That my scare all but monkeys away haha
    damn that had to take time
    To get them all to be in their balancing prime

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    1. Writers must walk a very fine line;
      It ain't nice to scream, "Buy mine, mine, MINE!"
      We want enough sales to float our boat
      Without shoving our books down everyone's throat.
      So let's all chill and find our zen
      By balancing stuff like that dude can.

      Delete
  18. I bet he uses some kind of invisible glue :)
    We do love balance in everything, without it chaos would rule ... That being said, I do think mankind has been losing its balance in recent decade...

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    1. I'd like some of that invisible glue! He says he uses gravity as his glue, and to tell the truth, gravity isn't very kind to people my age...

      Mankind as a whole may be teetering out of balance, but we, as individuals, can still strive to strike balance in our own lives and surroundings. Maybe it'll catch on...

      Delete
  19. Wow! That guy is amazing! I love rocks of all kinds, so I am completely enthralled by his balancing art.

    And I'm completely grateful to you for your mention of my books today. Thank you! You're the best. :)

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    1. Cool! I'm glad you liked it.

      My pleasure. Yeah, what can I say? I'm a real rock star.

      Delete
  20. Those are amazing and beautiful! I'd go so far as to say, magical. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Aren't they? Now that you mention it, they do have a certain element of hold-your-breath kinda magic to 'em.

      My pleasure. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

      Delete
  21. That is spectacular. He must have an enormous amount of patience. Yes, playing Jenga with this guy is definitely out! :)

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    1. Glad ya liked it. With the incredible amount of patience he displays in his rock balancing, it kinda makes me wonder what he does for a living. It'd be kinda funny if he's in demolitions.

      Yep, no Jenga!

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  22. Susan, you are such a breath of fresh air. These rock art formations are spectacular. Would love to go see them. And thanks for the shout outs. PS, I have your book on my Kindle, waiting to read when next I travel in September.

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    1. Thanks! (I tried to protect the fresh air by not eating too much sauerkraut last night...)

      Cool! I'll be looking forward to hearing what you think of the book. (I trust you to be gentle...)

      Delete
  23. He is quite an artist and maybe a little obsessive also. However, greatness often comes from obsessive minds.

    Balance is what we all seek in life and often it feels like stacking uneven stones.

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    1. Hmmm, I guess you're right. I suppose he'd have to be a little obsessive to invest so much time into creating those sculptures. What's kinda neat is even though he makes money selling photographs of his work, he also grants permission for bloggers to use his pics. I wonder how many other artists allow that.

      Yep, exactly like stacking uneven stones. I always say God knew what He was doing when He gave me such big feet, though. With as clumsy (and un-balanced) as I am, a firm foundation is verrrrry important.

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  24. Wow, I've never heard of this guy before. Amazing! I tried picking a favorite of the rock formations and couldn't, they are all gorgeous. I can only imagine the disaster that would ensue if I tried to do something like this. I might start an avalanche haha.

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    1. I think they're all gorgeous, too. Hey, ya never know... you could be the next big talent in rock balancing! As for causing an avalanche? No problem. Just stick with little rocks. Pebbles. That's it... use pebbles.

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  25. Holy frick, those are amazing! I'm totally in awe! Thanks for letting us all in on this work--I have a few people to share with now :)

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    1. HA! Love your reaction! That's how I felt when I first saw them, too.

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  26. Wow! Those are amazing. How does he have the patience (and time) to do that? Truly inspiring!

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    1. Glad ya liked 'em. I dunno where he finds the time. Maybe he only does it on weekends?

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  27. Gravity, mass, inertia and friction --the ingredients of gravity glue can't be contained in a bottle. This artist works directly with the fabric of reality.

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  28. Very cool. I can barely balance myself. I'm always on the verge of tipping over.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. That's because you're so (ahem) top-heavy. Or so I've heard...

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    2. True. Even when skinny, I have the bodacious ta tas to carry about.

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    3. Yes, ma'am... that's what I'm sayin'!

      Delete
  29. I'll be back later to comment, after I actually read all of this! :) (you know me and LONG blog posts!)
    BUT, is that you in that darling B&W photo? You look just like I did back then...No, really! Your hair, I mean!! I have a picture of me by our front door, but it's my profile!
    Anyway...I gotta get off of this laptop and get busy with other things!! TTFN

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    1. No, that isn't me. It's just a cute pic I found on morguefile. My hair was a lot blonder, and a WHOLE lot straighter.

      Yeah, I oughta get busy with something else, too. Later!

      Delete
  30. Finding the sublime balance point in life is so elusive!

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    1. Indeed, it is. That's why I wear a crash helmet.

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  31. Replies
    1. It sure is. Thanks for stopping by, Peaches, and for signing on as a new follower. I do appreciate it. Welcome aboard!

      Delete
  32. Wow, some of those rock sculptures are amazing! Okay. All of them are amazing! It must take a great deal of patience but I imagine that the process itself is a bit like meditating, restful.

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    1. Aren't they? I agree. To maintain the level of patience and inner quiet necessary to build these sculptures has got to feel a lot like meditating.

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  33. Okay--I was totally blown away by this guy's rock sculptures!! Totally!! Absolutely amazing! He must be so zen that the rocks can feel it--LOL! :)

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    1. HA! Yeah, I know what ya mean. I'll betcha he has a stony resolve, too. And rock hard abs, maybe?

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  34. Wow. That is amazing. I am officially in awe of this guy. I would love to be so *balanced.*

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    1. Yeah, you and me both. I don't think I will ever be THAT balanced. Wines and cheeses may improve with age, but a sense of balance? Not so much.

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  35. So glad I stopped by today, this is an incredible post and I can't say enough how much I appreciate your bringing this to my attention. Always looking for that 'tripod' in my life, to help keep this balancing act in the air.

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    1. Thanks. I'm glad you liked it. I think we all seek that special "tripod" in our lives, but I can't find the darned notches.

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  36. The rock sculptures are just as awesome as the photos on his website. I'm in awe...thanks for sharing this!

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    1. His sculptures make you look at rocks in a whole new way, doesn't it? I'm glad you like them as much as I do.

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  37. Michael Grab ROCKS!

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

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  38. Michael, grab ROCKS!

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

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  39. Gravity glue. :)

    He's one of the lucky ones who doesn't have to guess where to look for his niche. His work is awesome.

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    1. Neat name, isn't it? Yeah, I think his work is awesome, too.

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  40. Finding within himself a sense of peace, and experiencing a natural balance within the universe.

    That's quite the accomplishment these days.

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    1. Indeed. It's quite an accomplishment at any time.

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  41. What a wonderful post today.

    cheers, parsnip

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  42. Oh my gosh! Those pictures are AMAZING. I've never seen anything like it.

    And man... attaining balance in my life is my ultimate goal. I'm such an extreme person where I'm either one way or the other---which isn't too healthy. So I'm LEARNING... ;-)

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    1. Aren't they? I was pretty astounded when I first saw them, too.

      Don't worry; If finding balance is a conscious goal, you'll find it in due time. In the meantime, enjoy the learning process.

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  43. Dear Susan,
    I don't trust my eyes... am on the look-out for a wire or a drop (a??) of glue... No, really... so difficult to believe in these gurgling, splashing circumstances...
    If it is real (see? see? again the if) it is a wonder - and even if there was a trick (see? see? female sort of doubting Thomas): it remains a marvellous sight! Even if!
    Thank you for that post!

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    1. It's hard to believe those sculptures were built without some "trick" to hold them together, isn't it? But, no wires or actual glue involved. Just a whole lot of patience, a steady hand, and the ability to find those "niches".

      (My dear doubting Thomasina, if you check his webpage, you can see more videos of him at work.)

      My pleasure. I'm glad you liked it.

      Delete
  44. I absolutely LOVE this stuff.

    Balance is not a friend of mine :-), which is why I practice yoga!

    Pearl

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    1. Me, too.

      I don't have the world's best sense of balance, either, but I've never tried yoga. I think tai chi might be more to my liking.

      Delete
  45. I love rocks, but I had not heard of this artist before, so thank you so much for sharing these wonderful, wonderful rock sculptures with us. Balancing, indeed.

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    1. Since you love rocks, I'm especially glad you stopped by to see Michael's sculptures. Amazing, aren't they? Indeed.

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  46. That balancing stuff is absolutely phenomenal. When I think what a problem I have even stacking a pile of books on top of each other - well, I'm awestruck at this :D

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    1. Yeah, I reckon some people get all the balancing skills. You and I will just have to settle for good looks and brains, right?

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  47. Did you read my mind Susan?
    I've been thinking about balance lately...

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    1. Why yes, yes I did! (So you'd better watch out!) HA!

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  48. Michael Grab is not only genius, but must have the patience of a Saint!

    Another interesting post :)

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    1. I don't know about a saint, but he's sure got a lot more patience than most of us.

      Thanks. Glad ya liked it.

      Delete
  49. balance...story of our lives!! i love the pics, they are so gentle and calming. rocks can be cool when you're not throwing them at people, right???

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    1. Absolutely, if they're not in your shoe, making you trip, or being thrown at someone, rocks are very cool.

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  50. Fascinating... I have never seen such dexterity in rock art... but then, I had never looked. Thankyou for this post.I enjoyed it very much indeed. Christine

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    1. Hi, Christine. Thanks so much for stopping by. It's nice to meet you.

      Yeah, even though the art has been around for centuries, I think rock balancing is a new concept for most of it. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

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  51. Thanks for visiting Buttercup's. How could I not enjoy a blog based on Descartes vis-a-vis grocery cart? Look forward to reading your book and your recommendations.

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    1. My pleasure, Carol. Thanks for stopping by here, too. And welcome aboard! I appreciate you signing on as a new follower, and I hope you come back often now, y'heah? No telling what we might be talking about, but we usually have fun.

      Thank you, ma'am. If you do read my book, I'll be happy to hear your opinion on it. As long as it's a good one, of course. (Just kidding!)

      Delete
  52. When I get home I'll check out the videos..can't get it on the kindle. That's how I balance..do blog reading at break time! Thanks for stopping by the Pines! I'll see what I can do about a room at the castle. Wouldn't that be a great blog giveaway? We could put a copy of your book in every room..(along with the bible of course!) The rock balance was really amazing...

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    1. Cool. I hope you do check out those videos, especially the first one. It's really something to see that guy at work.

      Oh, yeah, that would be an awesome giveaway, especially if I win. As for the books, great idea! Bible in the top drawer, and mine on the bottom beside the telephone directory with the teeny tiny print.Or better yet, in the bathroom. (To read, that is, not for um, wiping purposes...)

      Glad you liked the rock balancing. I think it's amazing, too. (And it's also on the list of things I'd better not try.)

      Delete
  53. Welcome & thank you for your visit & joining me. Maggie is a very precious friend. Love the balancing act ... I've been doing that week having our gr-grkidling.

    TTFN ~
    Marydon

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    1. Hi-ya, Marydon. My pleasure. Thank you so much for stopping by.

      I know what ya mean about the grandkidlings. We'll be with four of ours the next few days. (Can't wait!)

      Delete
  54. I am in awe of this artwork! I'm not very good at being balanced in my life, I'm more of the excessive-compulsive type, but I am trying.

    Thanks for stopping by, isn't Maggie amazing? I just love her....

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    1. Yeah, me, too. It's absolutely amazing, and seeing it only makes me feel a teesny bit incompetent.

      My pleasure. That she is!

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    2. That's a TEENSY bit incompetent. sheesh

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  55. Those rocks are AMAZING! Just knowing that they exist makes me feel more balanced. I'm easy like that. :)

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    1. Aren't they? Uh-oh. Better watch out! Every time I say I'm "easy" my hubby gives me a hard time. (But I know whatcha mean.)

      Thanks for signing on as a new follower. Welcome aboard!

      Delete
  56. Just an idea...I like to feature friends who are writers on my blog. I can do a link, but thought you might want to do a paragraph and I can post it. Just came from Amazon. Your book looks great.

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    1. Sounds great! Thank you. I'm gonna be tied up with some of our grandkids for the next few days, (not literally) but I can try to get something to you sometime in the middle of next week, if that's okay by you.

      Thanks for visiting my book on Amazon. She loves company.

      Delete
  57. Utterly, utterly stunning!


    Diana at About Myself By Myself

    (book review in works...)

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    1. Aren't they? I'm glad you like 'em, too.

      (Woo-HOO! Thanks.)

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  58. OMG! Those pictures are amazing! Thanks for sharing, Susan.

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    1. I'm so glad you like them, too. 'Twas my pleasure to show y'all.

      (I love your first name. So pretty.)

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  59. Hi Susan .. I certainly wouldn't play Jenga with him - but what fun to see .. cheers Hilary

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    1. Hi-ya. Smart lady! I'll not be entering any singing contests with your Susan Doyle, either.

      Cheers!

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