May 31, 2015

Captured By Me...

Capturing the moments of today that will wow your hearts tomorrow...

If I could tell the story in words, I won't need to lug around a camera.

Photography is about capturing souls.  Not smiles.

Many years ago Kimsy and I went to Build-A-Bear right here in Plaza.
We both made our own bears.  She has a collection and I have that one bear we made together.

Beauty can be seen in all things.

The single most important component of a camera is the 12 inches behind it.

Life is like photography, we develop from the negatives.

There are no bad pictures; that's just how your face looks sometimes.

Taking pictures is savoring life intensely, every hundredth of a second.

A picture is a secret about a secret, the more it tells you the less you know.

Today everything exists to end in a photograph.

A good snapshot keeps a moment from running away.

My favorite picture for now was being able to capture my sister, Nirvana.
She never allows a picture of her to be taken, so each one I can get is treasured.

There are no rules for good photographs, there are only good photographs.

The Earth is Art, The Photographer is only a Witness.

 The eye should learn to listen before it looks

Not everybody trusts paintings but people believe photographs.

A little relaxtion by the pool.  Soothing.

The above picture was not taken by me.  It was taken by  Kimsy's dad.  Last night
 at her senior prom.  Because she is different she once again made headlines in the newspapers.

Dinner is served.  Anyone hungry?

The city is vibrant at night.

It's time to go home back to Brutus.

Photography is the only language that can be understood anywhere in the world...


May 30, 2015

About Puerto Rico...

Good things can come from unexpected places...

If you associate Puerto Rico's capital with the colonial streets of Old San Juan, then you know 
only part of the picture. San Juan is a major metropolis, radiating out from the bay on 
the Atlantic Ocean that was discovered by Juan Ponce de León. More than a third 
of the island's nearly 4 million citizens proudly call themselves sanjuaneros. 

The city may be rooted in the past, but it has its eye on the future. Locals go about their 
business surrounded by colonial architecture and towering modern structures.

Puerto Rico is a Caribbean island and unincorporated U.S. territory with a landscape of 
  1. green mountains, waterfalls and the tropical rainforest of El Yunque National Forest. 
  2. It's known for its white-sand beaches and coral reefs, popular for snorkeling,
  3.  diving, surfing and sailing. In San Juan, the capital and largest city, the Isla 
  4. Verde area is known for its beach bars, nightclubs and casinos.

Determining Puerto Rico's charm is a no-brainer. Less than a three-hour flight from
 Miami, this island is a U.S. territory (in case you didn't recall from high school history class). 
So when you're shopping in San Juan, you can pay for your souvenirs with American bills. 

When other Caribbean isles put a premium on wintertime at the beach, Puerto Rico offers 
year-round affordable packages so travelers can relax along its blanched sands. And 
while other regional spots like to advertise exciting nightlife, the capital city 
of San Juan actually delivers. Follow a pulsating beat to the dance
 clubs in the Santurce neighborhood, catch some live music in a
 Ponce lounge or grab a casual drink at a San Sebastián bar.

Since Puerto Rico is part of the United States, the island's currency is the U.S. dollar and 
credit cards are widely accepted. Tipping etiquette is the same here as in other parts of 
the United States; 15 to 20 percent is considered the standard, but more is
 appreciated for exceptional service.

For me Puerto Rico is home.  It's where we met some of the kindest people in his world.
It's where friends live and it's home to my sister, my niece and my nephew. It's where 
one is always welcome no matter where you go.  In PR you're family.

The thing I realize is not what you take, but what you leave.

Life takes you to unexpected places.
Love brings you home...


Family Time...

Family where life begins and love never ends...

Good morning from the beautiful island of Puerto Rico.  Coffee never tasted so good
as when one has a beautiful view in which to enjoy it.  Coffee in my sisters backyard surrounded
by mountains, the golf course, blue waters of her pool and amazing vegetation.  Pretty awesome.

Another family gathering at the home yesterday.   I was there early to help out while Arvid
stayed back at the hotel "relaxing" which he really needed since the drive to my sister's 
took took him close to 3 hours.  Yes, he was stuck in traffic. As you can imagine, 
it was not a happy Arvid during those hours.  Can't blame him.

She makes it look easy, but my sister is currently bone tired from doing million things.
Yesterday at her home I saw friends I have not seen in more that 10 years.

One of the nicest things is watching J and Arvid together.  Arvid has a knack with
all my nieces and nephews.  They all love him and he is so good with them.
Though he has complained a lot, when he got a hug from Kimsy thanking 
us for coming he told me, "this really makes it OK."

Reshma is already back home in Vermont.  The days are soon winding down and
soon everyone will soon be back to their homes.  The day is coming also when my sister
is going to be alone.  She has spent her life dedicated to her kids and now they are all grown up
and they are now on their own.  Arvid woke up early and said to me, "I'm thinking of your sister."

Good morning everyone.  May your day be an awesome one.

My point is, life is about balance.  The good and the bad.
The highs and the lows.  The pina and the colada.
Make it an amazing one...


May 29, 2015

Graduation Day...

Graduation is an exciting time.
It's both an ending and a beginning.
It's warm memories of the past and big dreams of the future....

The day we all waited so patiently for over a year arrived.  Yesterday was Kimsy's high
 school graduation.  As my sister, Nirvana puts it, "this was my life for 18 years."  Meaning 
both J, her son and Kimsy spent a total of 18 years in St. John's School.  A lifetime
 of running around, of going to activities and being on beck and 
call for her kids have suddenly come to an "end"

J lives in Boston and now Kimsy will be living in Connecticut.  A far way from home.  
A far call from sunny Puero Rico.  A new chapter begins in her life and one Kimsy is totally
 up for.  After graduation she had after party to go to at a very exclusive club.  
The next few days will be a flurry of activity for her.

Since we came my sister has been running around doing a million things at a time.  She is
 used to it, but it does look very exhausting.  I imagine this is how it is with kids because all 
of my sisters do the same.  Eventually Michelle will be also doing it.  Hectic hectic life.

For a graduation present Kimsy is going together with some friends on a 12 day European 
cruise.  She flys out on Sunday to London and from there it is going to be girls having fun.  
An experience that one carries for a life time.  For my high school graduation my sister
 and I and our graduating class took a Caribbean Cruise.  To this day, I vividly remember it.
 Loved every moment and for always it is a part of my memories.

Graduation was at 7, but cocktail hour started at 6.  J and my dad picked us up at our hotel 
and from there on it was a festive time.  After graduation we all went to my sisters
 home for a little family and friends celebration and a little nibble. 
 Overall it was a very good time.

During the day Arvid and I went to the mall.  Huge. Huge mall and with more vendors than
 I have in my Galleria Mall in Florida.  Was a good way to stay cool and check out a 
super cool mall.  After that we went to my sisters apartment for a little visit with
 her and Kimsy.  The makeup girl was there waiting to do Kimsy's makeup.  
Couple of hours there and then it was time for a little 
piña colada and some lunch for us.

Today we take it a little easy in the morning then later on we go to my sisters home for 
another gathering.  Lots of family activity and lots of driving and running around.
  Not necessarily the most relaxing of times, but for me it is alright.  I am happy
 to be here and to be able to spend some time with family. 
 Always good and always special.

To all a very good day and may you always live in interesting times.  To Kimsy
 I say, "shoot for the moon.  Even if you miss you will land among the stars." 
 It was not an easy journey, but you never gave up.  I love you Kimsy.
Remember, wherever you go go with your heart.  Just like always.

The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.


May 28, 2015

Family Stuff...

Remember, as far as anyone knows we are a nice, normal family...

Greetings from the Island of Enchantment.  Our days so far have been hectic.  Driving from 
place to place.  Family gatherings are not always easy.  My sister is busy running from
 place to place doing a million things at a time.  This is the first time we are driving 
around this much in the island and a always driving with Arvid is not always easy.

Yesterday we drove to where my parents are staying.  Good hours drive from our hotel.
The drive is beautiful with the mountains all around us.  Arvid does not like mountains.  One of
the things I like about Norway is also their mountains.  Arvid fo some reason not really a fan.

We met my parents and Reshma for lunch.  Had a little walk around the area
ad then we brought Reshma back to the hotel with us where we had piña coladas 
and walked the beach and took many pictures.  Very fun afternoon.

Arvid even played a little soccer with a little kid we met at the park.  The kid was good.
The evening was pretty relaxing.  We walked around the area a bit and visited the 
hotel where the graduation will be.  The Vanderbilt Hotel is pretty impressive.

Graduation is tonight.  Let's see how well Arvid copes.  For now to all of you
 good morning.  ope your day is good.  Puerto Rico is like Florida when it comes 
to the weather.  Nice and warm and where we are saying we have a nice ocean breeze.

Come visit Puerto Rico.

To us, family means putting your arms around each other and being there...


May 27, 2015

Puerto Rico...

I know I'm not perfect.  But I'm Puerto Rican.
And it's pretty much the same thing...

The Puerto Rico I grew up in.  Amazing.  Some of the kindest people on the planet.,
and some of the most beautiful sights in the world.  Island Of Enchantment it is.

 Isla Verde beach is partially lined by condominiums and luxury hotels. 
The white-sand beach is lined with trees such as sea grapes, almond trees and 
coconut palms that provide a welcome respite from the tropical sun.

Pictured above is what's know as West Condado Beach.

People-watching is the favorite sport of Condado beach regulars. The westernmost corner,
 at the end of Puente Dos Hermanos, is the most popular spot along the strip. A natural
 rock barrier making for calm, clear waters protects this small, shady beach.

 It is fully accessible to the public, while the beachfront hotels and condos have almost
entirely limited access to most of the rest of the beach. The lagoon, on the other side of
 the bridge, is great for kayaking and widsurfing, especially for beginners.  Running 
east to west, it is long and calm as a lake, with steady parallel winds.

Puerto Rico is known around the world for its hospitality.  Where everybody, from 
the taxi driver to the Governor wants to make you feel at home.  I can certify this as a fact.

Puerto Pico..known as the Island of Enchantment.  Now you know and can see why.
Read more by following this link.    

For the next few days we will be enjoying time with family and I will once
again visit some of my favorite places, but of all places the best thing about coming to PR
is that we get to see my sister Nirvana, and  family.  For me Puerto Rico means coming home.

Sitting with my sister listening to the Coqui's chirp away and
enjoying the silence that comes from being so close to the mountains.  The fresh air,
the beautiful surroundings and just talking and talking the nights away.  Yes, it's a good feeling.

We had a great first day.  Spent most of it at my sisters.  We all had lunch together,
and then my dad and Arvid disappeared for quite some time.  Found out the found a Tiki bar
in my sisters development and they decided that they needed a few more cold ones.

Back at the hotel Arvid and I found a little corner bar.  Had a little nibble
and something to drink.  We walked around a little.  Was a beautiful evening.  Ended up
at the hotel bar for a another cold one before settling into the room.  Very good first day it was.

Happiness is a journey.  Not a destination...


May 26, 2015

Destination Vacation...

As you grow older, you learn a few things. 
One of them is to actually take the time you've allotted for vacation...

Who does not love vacations?  Certainly Arvid and I do, and we try to take as many as we can.
For the next few days we will be having a wonderful time in Puerto Rico.  We are going
to my nieces graduation.  Yes, Kimsy is graduating from High School and will soon
be leaving home heading to Yale, and the years just keep passing by so fast.

Can't wait to be in Puerto Rico and see my sister and family.  Also mom and
dad are already there, and Reshma is also there.  Not everyone, but still will be a good time.

Can't wait to see those faces.  Love love them!

Isn't it amazing how much stuff we get done the day before vacation?