MAXINE BILLINGS, Photographer & Author

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


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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!!! ūüôā 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 ūüôā

http://www.maxinebillings.com

http://www.naturesartblog.wordpress.com

http://www.askeevie.wordpress.com

http://www.pearlspearlsofwisdom.wordpress.com

 

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MUSIC THERAPY

MUSIC SAVES SOULWhy is it music has the profound ability to soothe our soul? Sometimes when I’m undergoing trials, I find it extremely difficult to inwardly and outwardly sum up and express my thoughts and feelings. Not only does it affect my ability to converse with fellow humans, but my prayers to God are also hindered.

Perhaps you have experienced this as well, and suddenly, you hear a song that expresses precisely how you feel. If so, how did the music and the lyrics affect you? Did they soothe your heart and soul, leaving you feeling somewhat renewed, if only briefly?

I have personally experienced this many times, but one moment in particular that I would like to share happened recently during one of my congregation meetings. As we sang Song #68 (“A Prayer of the Lowly One”), tears welled up in my eyes, and for the first time in a long while, my heart and soul felt consolation.

There are many things that each of us may find to be our therapy during difficult times. Whatever helps to soothe your soul, it’s highly likely that music is one of them. Yes, music is medicine!

Have an awesome day! As always, this is from my heart ‚̧ to yours <3!

Maxine ūüôā

(Photo Credit: fallforward.wordpress.com)


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NATIONAL DIABETES AWARENESS MONTH

DIABETESWell, October is nearly gone, and I have been researching some other causes for the month of November.  There are many, but I chose the one for diabetes because it is a medical condition that runs in my family.  I find it interesting that millions of people who have diabetes do not even know it because of symptoms that are easy to miss, giving it the name The Silent Killer.

The Web site of Healthfinder.gov indicates that 79 million adults in the United States are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes.  This is the most common form where the body does not use insulin properly.

Additional link:  American Diabetes Foundation.

We live in a world where millions of people are plagued everyday of their lives with various illnesses and diseases.  I am so grateful that modern medicine has done much to alleviate some of our suffering and look forward to the time God has promised when no inhabitant will say, I am sick.  (Isaiah 33:24)

As always, this is from my heart to yours,

Maxine

http://www.maxinebillings.com

 

 

 


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LAUGHTER IS THE BEST MEDICINE

I’ve had a lot going on this week with my mama.¬† Earlier, my baby sister had called to tell me she hadLAUGHTER to contact 911 for her.¬† So I jumped in my car and flew to Mama’s house.¬† My sister, the fire truck, and the ambulance were already there when I arrived.¬† The ambulance was parked in the driveway so I pulled up onto the¬†front lawn¬†out of the way of the vehicle.¬† In doing so, I¬†had forgotten¬†about a small wire garden fence there¬†around Mama’s daylilies.

I suddenly heard a noise underneath the front of my car and realized that I had driven over something.¬† It was dark (almost eleven o’clock at night.)¬† I immediately backed up a little, and that’s when I remembered the fence.

But since I did not have time to worry about it at the moment, I¬†rushed into Mama’s house where she was being assisted by the emergency medical technicians.¬†¬†My husband arrived in his car.¬† After everything was situated and Mama was¬†taken to the hospital, I stayed behind for a few minutes to tidy up the house while my sister and her family went to the hospital.¬† I told¬†my husband¬†about the fence.¬† He then moved my car to the driveway and straightened the fence.

At the hospital as¬†we were waiting¬†for Mama’s test results, I could not help but laugh to myself every time I thought about running over the fence.¬† I told Mama what happened as she laid there in her hospital bed.¬† She, my sister, and I got us a good laugh from it.¬† I still¬†chuckle inwardly¬†when I think about it.¬† It reminds me¬†of another time when Mama was in the hospital and my kids and I were going one Sunday morning to visit her.

It was raining slightly, and¬†my¬†children¬†(who were much younger then)¬†were on either side of me as I tried to hold my umbrella in one hand and¬†keys¬†in the other.¬† I had given one of them my pocketbook to carry.¬† The next thing I knew, I was going down and could not stop.¬† I went down so fast that neither of¬†them were able to try to help¬†stop my fall.¬† The umbrella went one way and the keys,¬†another.¬† I fell flat on my “boom-boom” onto a huge clay pot of begonias that I had recently planted.¬† The cool part about the fall was that when I went down onto the pot, it was as though I had just plopped down onto a chair–a flower-pot chair!¬† I never hit the ground.¬† It looked like someone had just picked me up off the ground and set me onto the flower pot.¬† Since¬†the only thing that was hurt was my pride (just kidding–only my children saw me), all I could do was laugh at myself.¬† To this day, I continue to tell¬†others about it¬†as I’m¬†doubled over with laughter.¬† It was so funny to me that I ended up putting it in one of my stories, IN SICKNESS AND IN HEALTH, which is my sequel to THE BREAKING POINT.¬† ISAIHTBP

I love writing stories, and I love adding humor to them.¬† Many of us have heard of the age-old saying, “Laughter is the best medicine.”¬† And although many things in life are certainly no joke, there are times when having a sense of humor about them helps us to cope.¬† I¬†often ponder God’s and his son Jesus’¬†sense of humor.

When Jesus was on earth, although he was serious-minded when it came to his ministry and way of life, he was not a tight-lipped disciplinarian.  He was kind, warm, and friendly. The Bible says at Matthew 11:28 that he brought refreshment to others.  At the same time though, many of us might sense a touch of humor in some of the things he said and taught.

Although his teachings were mainly¬†for the purpose of spreading the good news about God’s Kingdom, one might also find amusing the idea of a camel attempting to pass through the eye of a literal sewing needle.¬† (Matthew 19:23 & 24)¬† Of course, this was just one example of Jesus’ way of teaching in order to get people to open up their minds and really¬†think.

Since Jesus is the perfect reflection of his Father (John 14:9¬†), it goes without saying that God also has a sense of humor.¬† Let’s look at just one example–his animal creation.¬† Have you ever stopped to take the time to¬†watch them?¬†¬†Some of them perform many humorous antics which bring a smile to our lips, laughter bubbling from within us, and extra joy to our lives.

Humor is a delightful gift from God and when used in moderation and with sound judgment, adds flavor, zest, and sparkle to our everyday lives.¬† So , yes, life will get us down now and then–but sometimes, laughter really is the best medicine!

Good-bye for now.  HAPPY READING!

And as always, this is from my heart to yours.

Maxine

http://www.maxinebillings.com