MAXINE BILLINGS, Photographer & Author

Fine Art Photography Inspired By Natural Creation & Wholesome Reading For Your Family's Entertainment


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GIFTS FROM THE HEART

I feel so very blessed to have a family who dearly loves me!!! Two of my greatest gifts from God are my children, daughter Natasha and son Stefan. It is not uncommon for them to just come home with something they’ve surprisingly gotten for me. Recently, my daughter gave me a Coach handbag and matching wallet.

Today, my son surprised me with the “Hidden Figures” DVD and book!!! I didn’t even know there was a book! Can’t wait to read it!

I’m not sharing this post to brag about what little I have materially but because I am so thankful for my family and their gifts from the heart. Even if they are something some may consider small (washing the dishes, running errands for me, asking about my day, etc.), I greatly appreciate and cherish it all.

And as always, this is from my heart ❤ to yours ❤ !

Maxine 🙂

http://www.maxinebillings.com

http://www.naturesartblog.wordpress.com

http://www.askeevie.wordpress.com

http://www.pearlspearlsofwisdom.wordpress.com


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MAKE ART MAKE CHANGE

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Do you agree that beautiful art has the power to change our perception about life? We can be having a really rotten day but look at an exquisite piece of art, and suddenly, our mood changes to one of sheer exhilaration!

You are cordially invited to help me #makeartmakechange by shopping my VIDA collection, and to assist you in doing so, here is a 15% off credit from VIDA that you can use to shop any designs from my collection. This unlimited use offer expires at midnight PST on 4/11/17.

SHOP MY COLLECTION 

Your purchase not only supports my collection but makes a global impact. VIDA is extremely passionate about helping to drive social change for artists and makers. Their company offers literacy and empowerment programs for VIDA’s factory workers so they can build a better life for generations to come.

So please join me and VIDA in our mission to #makeartmakechange.

As always, this is from my heart to yours !

Maxine 🙂

http://www.maxinebillings.com

http://www.naturesartblog.wordpress.com

http://www.askeevie.wordpress.com

http://www.pearlspearlsofwisdom.wordpress.com


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HEALING PHOTO ART

Scientific studies indicate that art heals by changing a person’s physiology and attitude. Physiology changes from one of stress to one of deep relaxation. Perceptions of the world are immediately changed from darkness and despair to hope and jubilation.

The Foundation for Photo/Art in Hospitals is an organization founded by Elaine Poggi. I recently had the wonderful pleasure of meeting her via the Internet during my research of children’s hospitals to whom I was seeking to donate some of my nature art. I e-mailed her, and right away, she responded back. Well, to give you the short version, I am now one of the Foundation’s contributing photographers!!! 🙂 Below is a picture of my “Regal Camellia” which has been added to their website. This image is also available on various products in my VIDA, Fine Art America, Pixels, and Zazzle online stores.

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Please visit the Foundation’s website to learn more about its founder Ms. Poggi and her extremely worthy cause. You can also show support for her organization through Amazon when you make purchases. If you buy items on amazon.com, please consider using smile.amazon.com/ch/76-0720368 which is the same as Amazon, except that it donates 0.5% of the price of your purchases to The Foundation for Photo/Art in Hospitals! Just click on the link and choose the Foundation. Then shop always from smile.amazon.com instead of amazon.com. The Foundation is receiving more than $200.00 a year from Amazon, and if more people do this, they will be able to fund a whole photo project in a hospital very soon. Please help spread the word about this among your friends and family.

As always, this is from my heart ❤ to yours ❤ !

Maxine 🙂

http://www.maxinebillings.com

http://www.naturesartblog.wordpress.com

http://www.askeevie.wordpress.com

http://www.pearlspearlsofwisdom.wordpress.com

 


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SENDING LOVE, HUGS & FLOWERS

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A beautiful photo book of various, colorful flowers from my gallery that I designed on Shutterfly and ordered recently. It went to someone whom I felt would appreciate the beauty of the flowers and expressions as much as I do. 🙂
From my heart   to yours !
Maxine 🙂


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SOMEONE WHO CARES

I wrote this poem, “Someone Who Cares,” around 2004 to be included in my second published novel by BET Books, “A Test of Faith” (released April, 2005.) I’ve also made it part of my Zazzle greeting card collection. In the book, my main character Andrea finds herself consumed with grief and despair when her beloved husband Clayton is killed by a drunk driver.

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One of her dear friends gives her a card that contains the poem. The poem is also near the front of the book before the story begins. Losing a loved one to death is the most tragic and painful heartache we can ever experience. Yet, not everyone grieves in exactly the same way. During this time, it is important that we have family and friends by our side to help us through the process of bereavement.

Sometimes, however, even in the midst of such support, our sorrow may cause us to feel lost and alone. Even with the support of her devoted family, this is how Andrea feels as she is being tested in so many ways. But with the progression of time, she wrestles with her sadness, anger, and faith–one day at a time.

A Test of Faith” is now out of print. However, you can still order a paperback copy via Amazon. Why not order one for yourself or someone else? Also, if you like it, I would greatly appreciate your writing a review on Goodreads and/or Amazon.

From my heart to yours !

Maxine 🙂


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ZAZZLE GREETING CARDS

Do you like to give and/or receive greeting cards? Although they are usually given on special occasions, they are also sent to express gratitude or other feelings. Today, I’m sharing with you six that I received just today from my Zazzle collection for my personal use. All contain images from my Nature’s Finest photo gallery and inspirational words written by me and/or Scriptural quotes.

To browse and shop my Zazzle store, just click here.

All of these beautiful cards plus more are available for purchase in my Zazzle online store.

And as always, this is from my heart ❤ to yours ❤ !

Maxine 🙂


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WELCOME, MRS. ANNIE

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Please help me welcome the newest addition to the BOOKS page of my author Web site, Annette Bentley Smith (aka Mrs. Annie)!!! 🙂 ❤

Mrs. Smith is a children’s author whose latest release NYRAH’S BULLY focuses on how to be a friend instead of a bully.

To find her on my BOOKS page, just scroll down to the bottom of the page. Links to some of her sites are also included for your benefit.

Welcome again, Mrs. Annie, and thank you so much for allowing me to include you on my site. Continued best wishes to you!!!

As always, this is from my heart ❤ to yours ❤ !

Maxine 🙂


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“DON’T BE A BULLY” SPOKESKID

avery-nyrahs-bullyThis little cutie is my three-year-old niece Avery! She is posing here with the newest release from our friend Annette Bentley Smith. As you can see from the expression on her face, she does not like it when anyone is bullied. She takes the matter very seriously and agrees with Mrs. Smith that we should be friends instead of bullies.

Have you read Nyrah’s Bully, Mrs. Smith’s new release? nyrahs-bully-front-2If not, why not purchase copies for yourself and a special someone? Available now in Kindle edition and paperback. Five-star reviews!

From my and Avery’s hearts ❤ ❤ to yours !

Maxine 🙂

 

 


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STOP BULLYING

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Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior toward another person that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. It includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, attacking someone physically or verbally, and excluding someone from a group on purpose. Also, in our age of modern technology, it also includes cyberbullying.

Sadly, children can be the victims of bullies, the ones doing the bullying, or witnesses of this hurtful behavior. I personally know what it’s like to be bullied because as a young child, I was a victim.

A very dear friend of mine, children’s author Annette Bentley Smith, has just recently released her anti-bullying book. Although it is a children’s book, it is also geared toward families, which is so important because children who are victims of this horrific behavior need all the support they can get but especially from their families.

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To purchase your Kindle edition and/or paperback copy of Ms. Smith’s new release or any of her other books, please click here to visit her Mrs. Annie’s Books Facebook page.

Also, to read up on bullying and how you can prevent it and respond to it, click here to visit the official site of the Stop Bullying website page.

As always, this is from my heart ❤ to yours <3!

Maxine 🙂


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LOVEBIRD QUIZ

LOVEBIRDSToday, I read an article, What type of “lovebird” are you?, in the February 17, 2014 issue of First for women magazine that I found to be extremely interesting.  And since I love writing stories about relationships, I decided to write this blog.  The article was based on the book, Lovebirds, by couples therapist and avid bird-watcher Trevor Silvester who explains some ways that humans show love by comparing them with how birds interact with their mates.

The article included a six-question, multiple-choice quiz for readers to see what makes their own hearts soar.  Answers revealed if you are a nightingale, an owl, a peacock, or a swan.  I’m a swan.  The article pointed out that this bird is happiest when it is amicably swimming for hours next to its mate (which it has for life!).

Some traits of a person who falls under this category are:  (1) he/she is a conveyor of affection by going out of the way to show emotional support and make others feel comfortable, (2) great harmony is found in simply spending one-on-one time with his/her loved one in a relaxed setting, and (3) he/she doesn’t need their partner to do anything extravagant to prove their love–they just need to be there for them.

In every relationship, there is going to be friction because no matter how compatible two people TBPare, they are both still two imperfect human beings who will sometimes rub each other the wrong way.  (Romans 3:23)  Therefore, none of us can truthfully say that we have never in word or deed hurt someone we dearly love.  Oftentimes, getting too wrapped up in our own emotions can cause us to overlook how the other person may be feeling.  Communication is key in any relationship; however, there is a right way and a right time in which to carry it out.  For example, it needs to be done respectfully and not when we are angry.  Otherwise, it will only add more fuel to the fire.  This is what happens with Estelle and Roger in THE BREAKING POINT.

Being in love and being loved are two of the best feelings in the world.  Our capacity to love is a gift from our Creator–so whether you’re a nightingale, an owl, a peacock, a swan, or something else, love with all your heart because love never fails.  (1 Corinthians 13:8)

HAPPY READING!  And as always, this is from my heart to yours,

Maxine

http://www.maxinebillings.com

(Lovebirds Photo-Courtesy of Office.com Clip Art)