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If you’ve been reading my blog for long, you know how much I adore Susannah Conway. I am so inspired by her classes, her photography, and her writing, her way of being in the world, that I would follow her just about anywhere, take on any prompt or project she suggested.

susannah and I at her book event this summer in portland

Susannah is hosting August Break, as she’s done for the past two years, and I’m joining in. The goal is to share a picture on your blog every day of August. Other bloggers use this time to take a break from regular blogging, to look closer at their world through the camera lens as a way to be more present and relaxed, to sink into the joys of the month and savor the end of summer. I am having so much fun blogging right now, I’m not going to take a break from that, but rather add daily August Break posts, sharing with you, kind and gentle reader, “the view from here.”

The View from Here: August 1st

This is how I start every morning, at my writing desk in front of my HappyLight, window open so I can hear the birds sing once the sky gets light, with a 1/2 cup of coffee, Kashi Bar, and a banana that I’ll share later with Sam, the boy sleeping on the bed under my feet. This morning, I was a few minutes late, was in the kitchen talking to Eric, and Sam cam out to find me, let me know that he’d been waiting and I was now officially “late for work.”

I love getting up so early (most mornings), before the sun is even up, to sit in the mostly quiet and write. Sometimes what I write is total crap, a garbage dump of complaints, whining and moaning and bitching about dumb stuff, but more often it’s the bones of a blog post, or pages of a book or essay being born.

This picture shows close up what my view is like when I’m writing. The other day, I bought myself flowers to encourage myself to clean off my desk (it worked). I currently have a “thing” for owls, feel like along with dogs, they are the animal guides for my writing. The blue container holds some of Obi‘s ashes, and is next to Guanyin, also known as White Tara in Tibetan Buddhism, the goddess of mercy, compassion and action, (this particular one found at the Waldport Flea Market for one dollar, she holds a lotus blossom in her hands). At her feet are various rocks I’ve collected, one of which is roze quartz, the love stone.

Guanyin stands in front of a post card of Susannah’s and a picture I originally framed for my grandma (she’s since passed, so I have it again) which includes a bible verse about rejoicing and being glad in this day, and there is my World Domination Summit (WDS) temporary tattoo, my message from the universe by way of Andrea Scher, a take-way from Cynthia Morris‘s WDS workshop which reads “claim your AUTHORity now” and postcard from Patti Digh where she holds a rock that says “I dare you.” Behind that, where you almost can’t see it, is a jar of sand from Waldport Beach. There are other things you can’t see in this particular image, like the picture of Obi or the one of my nieces on the beach, or the piece of art from my first heART exchange swap partner. All of these things inspire me, remind me of my intention to write.

After I write, I turn on my computer and do a quick check of my email, facebook, and my blog. After that, I either walk the dogs or go to yoga. This morning, it was yoga, and this was the sky outside my gym. It’s getting light later already, so I got to see some of the sunrise before I went inside.