Saturday, July 25, 2009

Living Joyfully

Pictures from top to bottom: one of a field of sunflowers in Yvoire, France; John and Jasmijn on the boat from Yvoire to Geneva; the last two are of Joran, Jolene and Jasmijn in the capital city of Bern, in the fountains which are so cool because they explode randomly from the pavement. Watch out!

Something I'm focused on these days is Living Joyfully. It's a practice. Like yoga. Never perfect.

You know how hard it is to believe something when all you've got to tell you it's true is a little voice in your head or an emotion? Two books have put experience and research together to "prove" what I already knew. Of course, there are no singular events in my life. My new belief in Living Joyfully did not arise out of only two books. In a way, it's been a lifetime coming, but more recently influenced by studies of Law of Attraction and quantum physics (approximately the last 10 years)and a series of personal challenges and triumphs of the last few years in which I have looked deeply into myself and had long conversations with my soul.

But anyways, I love these books: The Big Leap, by Gay Hendricks, and My Stroke of Insight, by Jill Bolte Taylor. The Big Leap is a business/personal growth book. My Stroke of Insight is written by a neuroanatomist who experienced a massive stroke and fully recovered! Check out Jill's TED Talks presentation on my sidebar under Generally Interesting Links.

We are so much more than meets the eye! Not your average Cybertronian alien, either.

In a shout-out to my friend Dayna Martin, LIFE ROCKS!!!

Jolene =)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Alpine Heaven

Enjoy this series of photos from our latest visit to Wengen, Switzerland and the Jungfrau region!

Two real, live Swiss guys! And a chalet.

Okay, this is a good one! We are stuck on a gondola (Katie, Jasmijn and I are sitting opposite John and Joran) in a cloudy, misty rain. We can hear thunder in the distance and get a couple of flashes of lightning while the wild wind rages around us. This is the longest gondola ride in Europe and after being on it for 45 minutes, IT STOPS MIDAIR! Holy Poop!
Soon after it starts back up, we arrive at the Middle Station and are told to go back down the mountain. It then only takes us 15 minutes to get down, where we find out that we were apparently the last people they let on just before closing. It was a mistake to let us on and that is why we were sent back rather than allowed to continue across the mountain. So, we ended up taking the trains all the way around and arriving back at the hotel a couple hours later than expected.

They look quite happy!

First time on a swing. Very serious business.

On these hikes, Joran loves taking "short cuts" and "secret paths."

The mountains are glorious, but also personal and delightful down to the smallest detail.

Wildflower fields next to our hiking trail, backdrop of mountains.

John noticed this tree and rock next to the road, but he couldn't find Jolene, Jasmijn or Joran, who had ran ahead and hidden from him.

"I think I can. I think I can. I think I can."
The Little Engine That Could

Don't pick the flowers in the Alpine Botanical Gardens, kids!
Believe it or not, I have actually seen this antiquated form of punishment in Geneva.

Getting warm in the visitor info room. Too bad this was a cold, drizzly at the Alpine Gardens. There will always be reasons to go back to Wengen.

The steam engine that we chased up the mountain. I am laughing because Joran is posing in a funny fashion.

Secret messages

How I love his smile and the twinkle in his eye!

Joran asked me to include this picture of the train named "Bob."

Jasmijn gives Joran a massage after a long day hiking the Alps.

Aaaahhh! Don't we look happy! Of course, Joran is being his normal goofball self. He's a Goofy Goober!

We're all Goofy Goobers! Yeeeaaaah!

John and I did it! This zip line (as I guess it's called in English) made me think of a Fritz Perls quote:
"Fear is excitement without the breath."
The kick-off took my breath away and led to squeals and giggles. Then, as we sped through the Alpine air, the wind got so fast that each deliberate breath felt like breathing in All That Is. These glorious mountains do wonders for us!

My mom's favorite view of the day

Must have fondue when in Switzerland. John, you're a trooper -- we thoroughly enjoyed it!

Summertime Fun

We're loving our summer! I haven't taken much time online for any reason, even this blog. Now that the guests are gone, I hope to write more. Enjoy!

Back at the Swiss Vapeur Park, this time with Grandma, Grandpa and my cousin Katie. They all loved it, too! What fabulous fun! My father isn't walking long distances these days, so it was great to go to a park where he could sit with a drink or just ride around for hours.

Horse racing in Annecy, France

Jasmijn was really posing here. We got about 6 photos and she was just loving the camera. First time in a high chair, too. She enjoyed the entire dinnertime. I remember this stage with Joran -- so easy to eat out at restaurants. Now he wants to jump up and get going again as soon as he finishes eating, 5 minutes into the meal.

Katie, Grandma/Mom/Elaine, Grandpa/Dad/Jerry, me and Jasmijn in Annecy, France