Happy Mother's Day to ALL Mothers!

 After reading many beautiful and heartwarming articles written by mothers and daughters about Mother's Day, I wanted to share some of the photos and stories of animals I've seen around the world taking care of their young.  Some of you know that I've been involved in animal rescue for many years and have a soft spot in my heart for all animals.  I am always amazed at how protective and caring animals are of their offspring.

  I really wanted to write a post in honor of all mothers and especially those that are often overlooked on Mother's Day each year.  If you have pets you are a mother they could not survive without you!  I wrote a similar post about animal mothers and their offspring for Mother's Day a couple of years ago.  One of my readers was very grateful that I had posted it.  Sadly not humans have a mother at all or one that they are close to. 

My husband and I have also taken in several stray pregnant cats.  We found homes for all of the babies and mothers including the seven orange ones in the second photo down.  We actually kept the mothers - Princess (the black cat) and Peaches (orange cat) for ourselves. 

The monkeys that I saw at the Monkey Forest in Ubud, Bali we're so fun to watch.  The babies were so cute and well taken care of by their mothers.   I thought this mother was showing tremendous patience with her little one.Bali-345410_960_720
Bali-345410_960_720Here is a mother monkey feeding her baby what appears to be some coconut:
Bali-345410_960_720I saw many elephant mothers with their babies in the Serengeti National Park while in Tanzania:

Continue reading "Happy Mother's Day to ALL Mothers!" »

"I don’t trust words. I trust pictures.” ~ Gilles Peress

I've always said that I believe very little of what I hear and only some of what I see.  The same goes for photographs as I know now that they can be edited and manipulated in many ways.  I still often get asked by many of my friends and people why I would want to visit some of the places I do - especially Antarctica and Tanzania in Africa

It's great to be able to punch a few buttons on my cell phone and pull up some images from my Instagram account and show people a few pictures of these places.  I can tell by the looks on their face that they understand why I would want to travel so far away into places that many perceive to be dangerous.   At least I can show them why I wanted to see certain places in person.

You can use any of my photos in a variety of sizes for free without worrying about getting in trouble as they are free of copyrights under Creative Commons CC0.  My profile on Pixabay is HERE

Blogg1Above is a photo of myself in Paradise Bay and below is Paradise Bay which I thought was the most beautiful part of Antarctica which is saying a lot.

Blogg111This ship seemed so small compared to the other ones I saw and compared to the glaciers surrounding it

Blogg111The sun would go down around 11:00Pm and come up around 3:00 AM
Blogg1The glaciers were so much bigger than I expected and it really was not as cold as I expected.  It was generally around 30 degrees Fahrenheit.
Blogg1This was the closest thing I saw to a sunset and it was almost midnight

Blog11111The following photos were taken on in Massai Land and on safari in Tanzania.


  These zebra kept running back and forth past these lions.  I was so scared they would get caught playing their "game".Zebras-278084_960_720

Thank you very much for stopping by my blog.  Please feel free to leave any comments or questions.  I really enjoy hearing from my readers.  I hope you are all having a wonderful week.   







A Movie "The Salt of the Earth" Changed My Thoughts on Traveling

The Salt of the Earth chronicles Sebastião Salgado's career.  You can see his photos here.  I highly recommend taking a peek as they blow my mind!  Not only did this movie inspire me to work on my black and white photography, but it also changed my thoughts and goals regarding my future travel plans.  I watched this movie on the airplane when I returned from Italy and you can see the reviews from Rotten Tomatoes here.

Since visiting Bali 2 1/2 years ago and then Tanzania about two years ago I have become more of a tourist than s traveler.  I have only wanted to see happy pretty things over the past couple of years.  While I have greatly enjoyed myself I know there is another side of the world and part of me has always wanted to make a difference. 

Watching this movie "The Salt of the Earth" has convinced me that I would like to do something either in my own country or in another one to help the environment or people and animals in some way.  It was a very timely thing for me to see this movie a few weeks ago.  The narrator (Salgado) became disenchanted with humanity while taking photographs of war and refugee camps decided that he needed to make some changes.  He eventually goes back to where he was raised in Brazil and helps restore the land that had become barren due to deforestation.

Salgado said this after many years of photographing war, famine and other causes of human suffering:
"So many times I've photographed stories that show the degradation of the planet. I had one idea to go and photograph the factories that were polluting, and to see all the deposits of garbage. But, in the end, I thought the only way to give us an incentive, to bring hope, is to show the pictures of the pristine planet - to see the innocence." 
Sebastião Salgado'

You can read about some of my travel experiences that left me disillusioned and a little down here, here, and here.  
 Here are a few photos of my trip to Tanzania and Maasai Land:
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With the Masssai: 6a00e55215d62e883401a5117a42bf970c-500wi

Have you seen "The Salt of the Earth" or have you done any humanitarian work or traveling?
Thank you for visiting.  I hope you all have a wonderful week!

Asha Mshana's Vocational School Making a Difference in Tanzania


Tan16"Besides love, independence of thought is the greatest gift an adult can give a child.”

~ Bryce Courtenay, The Power of One

While in Tanzania when I was traveling with "The Giving Lens", our group visited a vocational school in Moshi that was established by a former Home Economics teacher named Asha Mshana. After retiring from teaching Home Economics for 30 years in Tanzania, this lady wanted to make a difference for the girls who were getting married and having babies at age 12 or 13.  While in Tanzania we met many young mothers in their teens.  Tan18She wanted to provide them with a marketable trade such as improving there English, sewing, or using computers.  She created and found the funding for the Mkombozi vocational school. back in the 1999 all on her own which has grown a lot. Boys are allowed to attend as well. The students do have to pay to attend which is quite a hardship for many of them. Hundreds of students have graduated from one of her programs and found good paying jobs.

In my opinion Asha Mshana shows how much of a difference one person can make!  They need volunteers to help the students learn to use computers, sew, and improve their English skills.  Here is the website for the school she founded: 


Asha Mshana shown below:  Tan2Working hard on the computer and happy to be learning:


Tan17Tan18The sewing skills of many students were quite impressive and they were very proud of their creations:
Tan17The students all worked dilligently and seemed to be happy to be learning:


Here is a sign at the school warning about the danger of HIV/AIDS which is quite prevalent in Tanzania:
Here is the outside of the vocational school that was being expanded at the time of my visit:


Thank you so much for stopping by.  Have you ever met someone who succeeded in empowering and or helping so many others?  Have a great week my friends!


Group Travel: Is it Right For You?

“Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer” -Anonymous

Many of you who read this post already know if traveling with a group is right for you.  I had always been hesitant since I like my space and don't like waiting for others when there is something I want to do.  Over the past year I have traveled with two groups.  One of the trips would be considered luxury travel:  (click on the underlined words following to see a post on this trip)

Luxury travel trip

                 The other would be considered be considered an adventure/humanitarian travel trip:

Adventure/Humanitarian travel

 It would be unfair for me to compare these two trips because that would be like comparing apples and oranges!  Tanzania is a developing country and New Zealand has a thriving economy.  I definitely did learn what I want and can handle in a trip especially with other people.

On one trip, which would be considered adventure and humanitarian travel, to Tanzania with I had to share a room with 3-4 people and sleep on bunk beds.  For two nights of the nine I was there I had to share a bed with another woman.   I also had to share a bathroom with no less than four people.  We only had access to cold or bucket showers which made it impossible for me to wash my waist length hair :(  There was also one night that we were supposed to sleep in a boma in Massai Land.  I didn't go because they were sacrificing a goat and everyone had to drink a little blood or the Massai might be insulted.  I am a strict vegetarian and am very involved in animal rescue.  There was no wifi in the guest houses we stayed at the entire trip.   


It may sound like I'm bashing this group and I really don't mean to - that is NOT my intent.  My intent is to share  some questions that I will always ask when traveling with others.  I feel that I should have known better and asked more questions!  Here are some:

1.  Will I be sharing a room (or a bed) and with how many people?

2.  Will I be sharing a bathroom and with how many people?

3.  Ask for a COMPLETE itinerary so you will know if there are any activities that conflict with your beliefs.

4.    Will any of the places you stay have wifi or any type of internet access?

5.    How often will you be moving from place to place?

6.    If traveling to a developing country, what type of bathroom facilities will be available?  In many developing countries, there is no running water so you might only have a squat type toilet.  

7.    What will your daily schedule be like?  If each day is 12-16 hours, do you have the stamina for it?

8.    What is the food and or meals like?

9.    How much spending money and or cash will I need?

 ***I may add to this list if you want to leave me a comment with other important questions.

 Now that I have told you so many negatives about my trip to Africa, it's only fair that I tell you the positives.  First and foremost, they made sure we were safe and felt safe.  They told us what we needed to know about the culture so we wouldn't offend anyone AND stay safe.  The leaders made sure that I had vegetarian food even though I was the only one on the trip.  They also respected my decision to not spend the night in Masailand for the goat sacrifice. I learned how to use my DSLR camera.  By staying at the guest houses we were financially helping the local people.  I got to see the culture and a side of the country that I would not have if I hadn't been on this trip.  I also got some great photos!  Please see my other post on this trip here:  

Adventure/Humanitarian travel


Thank you so much for stopping by.  I love to read your comments or questions and and reading other people's blogs as well.  Your e-mail address will never be published.  Until next time, take care my friends!