Monday, September 2, 2013

The Fleeting Days of Summer

"One must maintain a little bit of Summer, even in the Winter."
-Henry David Thoreau 

When I was a little girl, I was convinced that Summer was the shortest Season and the Winter the longest. The long Winter months seemed to drag on endlessly and the swift Summer months to be vaporous. As I've grown older, I've learned to appreciate Winter by its own right yet Summer has still maintained a kind of magical quality in the heart of my own imagination. This year, my Summer (Summer holiday, at least) has been extended due to my September departure to the UK. I have relished my extra time to witness the joys of late Summer days in CO. I am sad to see these days slip away but I welcome the crisp Autumn days that are upon us. 

11 Ways I am Savoring these Last Days of Summer:
  • Long early morning runs and bike rides
  • Reading into the night on the back porch
  • Picking and preparing Summer squashes and tomatoes from the garden
  • Having my fill of juicy watermelon
  • Walking barefoot through the soft green grass
  • Bending down to observe a spider spinning his web
  • Falling asleep with my window cracked open and the soft hum of the fan
  • Sipping iced tea in the afternoon
  • Sending off letters of correspondence 
  • Wearing all the flowing Summer skirts I can before the chill sets in
  • Pulling out my camera to capture the beauty of these late Summer days

Friday, May 24, 2013

Photo Friday: Summer Foliage

The Song of the Flower

I am a kind word uttered and repeated
By the voice of Nature;
I am a star fallen from the
Blue tent upon the green carpet.
I am the daughter of the elements
With whom Winter conceived;
To whom Spring gave birth; I was
Reared in the lap of Summer and I
Slept in the bed of Autumn.
-Khalil Gibran


Friday, May 17, 2013

Photo Friday: "Let us be Attentive"

Prayer before the reading of the Gospel:

O Master Who loves mankind, illuminate our hearts with the pure light of Your divine knowledge and open the eyes of our mind to understand the teachings of Your Gospel. Instill in us also the fear of Your blessed commandments, that we may overcome all carnal desires, entering upon a spiritual life and understanding and acting in all things according to Your holy will. For You are the enlightenment of our souls and bodies, O Christ God, and to You we give glory together with Your eternal Father and Your all-holy, gracious and life-giving Spirit, now and ever and forever. Amen.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

New Photo Post

Thursday, January 17, 2013

"For even the wise cannot see all ends" - A Question Concerning Capital Punishment

Though matters concerning capital punishment are often debated on a basis of pure political and economic thought, when it comes to matters of life and death, such discussions surpass the bounds of political rhetoric. As with all matters of ethics, it is important to examine the intention and motive behind the matter at hand; and this topic is no exception.

A spirit of retribution appears to be the main governing motive behind capital punishment. Yet because it is impossible to restore the life that was lost, capital punishment seems to arrive at an insatiable end. To return death with death is hardly a reasonable solution, for what is accomplished in doing so? What in taking another life rectifies the life already taken? For the life of the victim is not restored, nor does the heart of the convict come to contrition. As the old saying goes, “two wrongs don’t make a right.”

Upon execution under the state, the cause of death stated on the felon’s death certificate is homicide. Homicide is defined as, “the deliberate and unlawful killing of another person.” What one man was sentenced to death for, another is justified under the law, to commit the same offense. By sentencing one to death, one is assuming the authority to violate life. Are we, as human beings, adequate judges of fellow human beings? J.R.R Tolkien provides beautiful insight into such questions. The character, Frodo, in expressing his wish that the creature, Gollum, would have received the penalty of death for his actions, receives this response from the wise wizard, Gandalf: “Many that live deserve death. And some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then do not be too eager to deal out death in judgement. For even the wise cannot see all ends.” The very act of sentencing of a criminal admits to our own fallibility as human beings, and the judge and jury are no exception to this reality. In essence, man has no claim to another man’s life, and is not fit to judge otherwise.

However, while we are not worthy judges of who deserve life and who deserve death, this is not to say we should idly regard those who have taken life. Rather, I would argue for a sentence of life incarceration as opposed to the death penalty. Life incarceration prohibits the convict from committing additional offense to society, yet allows more fully for human error in the event that someone be wrongly accused. This alternative, under the appropriate conditions, would aim at a goal of the convict’s repentance rather than a recompense that cannot be fulfilled.

To violate life in any form is to negate the value that life itself holds. Therefore, let us value life and thus do all we can to preserve it.

 This blog post is an official entry for the <a href="">Law Blogger’s Scholarship</a>, sponsored by The Law Office of Joshua Pond, <a href=""></a>.

©Madeleine Stokes 2013

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Photo Friday: Simplicity

“The ordinary acts we practice every day at home are of more importance to the soul than their simplicity might suggest.”
- Thomas More

Thursday, January 3, 2013

And the Feast goes on ... the 12 Days of Christmas

"Christ is born! Glorify Him!

Christ descends from the heavens, welcome Him!
Christ is now on earth, O be jubilant!
 Sing to the Lord, the whole earth

 Homemade hot cocoa mix - made with all wholesome and natural ingredients. :)
Click here for the recipe.

Vasilopita - St. Basil Day Bread.
Click here for the recipe.

"I behold a strange but very glorious mystery:
Heaven -- the cave;
The throne of the Cherubim -- the Virgin.
The manger -- the receptacle in which Christ our God,
Whom nothing can contain, is lying".