“It’s the solstice… [@dailyshoot #ds401]

Some cool relationship advice images:

“It’s the solstice… [@dailyshoot #ds401]
relationship advice

Image by ConnectIrmeli
…Make a photo that captures the day for you wherever you are."

As light as it got today…

"A Purpose Driven Life’s 5 step Process To a Goals Attainment

1. Form a clear mental image of the outcome in its entirety. Not in your imagination, but a vivid visualization. The difference is that in visualization in your heart you also feel that it is possible.
2. Induce some positive pressure on yourself. You can accomplish this through a public pledge with the people who you value in your life.
3. Define your financial, social, spiritual goals. Use an idea book and picture book to keep you inspired and motivated. Examine your relationship to time.
4. Create an empowering habit designed to attain your goals. Make sure you bring complete awareness into it, don’t let it become a mechanical action. Little consistent actions will yield huge results.
5. Enjoy the process and keep growing. This life is an amazing adventure; make sure you learn from the ride in both the ups and downs."

ivancampuzano.com/discovering-your-lifes-purpose-and-expl…

Great advice in front of a new year – promises you don’t need to remake every year :)

Hands
relationship advice

Image by .michael.newman.
I tried to frame their whole bodies but I was too slow and clumsy so this is what I got (after a bit of cropping). I think it’s a happy accident.

This brings to mind three things:

1. "One day…little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today." (M.L. King, and don’t think I’m not aware of the banality of quoting something so significant in this context; I’m just reporting my thoughts here.)

2. "Hand in hand. No don’t ask me to apologize, I won’t ask you to forgive me. If I’m gonna go down, you’re gonna come with me." (Elvis Costello)

3. This article by Stephanie Rosenbloom called "A Show of Hands" from the NYT of 10/5/06, which you can no longer read online without subscribing:

ON a brisk autumn afternoon, in the shadow of the marble arch in Washington Square Park, a couple visiting from Ohio walked along holding hands like two teenagers going steady, decades after ”going steady” went out of vogue.

When a stranger asked why they had chosen to join hands during their stroll, the man, Dave Findlay, looked at his wife of seven years and answered in a word: ”Connection.”

Or as the Beatles sang back in 1963: ”When I’ll feel that something, I want to hold your hand.”

Those simple lyrics turned an expression of teenage longing and first romantic steps into a No. 1 hit. Yet today, when Justin Timberlake is at the top of the charts with ”SexyBack” and the digital airwaves are filled with steamy lyrical declarations (”I’m into havin’ sex, I ain’t into makin’ love” sang 50 Cent in ”In da Club”), couples like Dave and Carey Findlay still intertwine fingers, kiss palms and link pinkies as they meander through parks, cross streets and snake through crowds.

”Hand-holding is the one aspect that’s not been affected by the sexual revolution,” said Dalton Conley, a professor and chairman of the department of sociology at New York University. ”It’s less about sex than about a public demonstration about coupledom.”

Nowadays hand-holding has attracted the interest of scientists who are studying its effects on the body and mind. And sexual health educators say it is a much-discussed topic among gay students who now publicly hold hands more than ever before but still must consider whether they want to declare their sexuality.

”I think it remains more important in an era of perhaps more liberal sexual norms,” Dr. Conley said. ”It remains this thing to be doled out.”

To hold someone’s hand is to offer them affection, protection or comfort. It is a way to communicate that you are off the market. Practically speaking, it is an efficient way to squeeze through a crowd without losing your partner. People do it during vigils, marches, weddings and funerals.

Usually it connotes something innocuous and sweet about a couple and their relationship. In rare instances, it takes on added potency, such as when President George W. Bush held the hand of Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia in Crawford, Tex., last year — an act of respect and affection in Arab countries — reminding some people of the film ”Fahrenheit 9/11,” which depicted the Bush family’s close business ties to Saudi leaders and which ignited conspiracy theories.

But, over all, few things are more innocent than a child grabbing the hand of a parent, for protection, direction and, as Mr. Findlay put it, connection. And with many children these days closer and more outwardly affectionate to their parents, chances are you have spotted a mother and her teenage daughter and perhaps even a father and his adolescent son ambling through a mall, scurrying through a crosswalk or strolling along, hand in hand.

Adult children and their elderly parents also hold hands, for balance, support and as a sign of love.

As for romantic couples, the opinions about hand-holding are as varied as fingerprints. But most people agree that it has merely changed, not lost favor.

”I think that for sure college students hold hands just like the old days,” said Sandra L. Caron, a professor of family relations and human sexuality at the University of Maine in Orono.

If they do, it is likely only after they are deep into a relationship — not in those early days of budding romance, when a touch of hands was the first act of intimacy between a couple. That was the hand-holding that the Beatles wrote about. (Followed swiftly by the sexual revolution, whose equivalent anthem might be The Rolling Stones’ ”Let’s Spend the Night Together.”)

Among more than a half-dozen students at the University of Maine, there seemed to be two universal truths: that hand-holding is the least nauseating public display of affection and that holding hands has become more significant than other seemingly deeper expressions of love and romance.

”It is a lot more intimate to hold hands nowadays than to kiss,” said Joel Kershner, 23. Because of that, he said, reaching for someone’s hand these days has more potential for rejection than leaning in for a smooch at a party where alcohol is flowing.

Libby Tyler, 20, said it was ”weird that hand-holding is more serious,” but true. ”It’s something that you lead up to,” she said.

There is nothing casual about it any more, said Rachel Peters, 22. ”Hand-holding is something that usually people do once they’ve confirmed they’re a couple,” she said.

But if that is not complicated enough, where you choose to hold hands also has meaning, the students said.

Drew Fitzherbert, 21, said that public hand-holding ”shows that commitment not only to you and your partner but everyone else in the community.”

Dr. Conley of N.Y.U. agreed. ”In the dark movie theater, in the dorm room, that’s a very different social act,” he said.

Are people holding hands as much as they once did? That’s impossible to quantify. But Gregory T. Eells, the director of counseling and psychological services at Cornell University in Ithaca, said he didn’t think so.

”I see more people on their cellphone than holding hands,” he said, adding, ”To some extent we are trading real face-to-face relationships, where there’s touch and body language, for electronic ones.”

Peter Shawn Bearman, a professor of sociology and the director of the Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy at Columbia University, said that hand-holding in crowded cities like New York may simply be impractical.

”Maybe if the proportion of hand-holders has indeed gone down it has more to do with density (of humans) than the devaluing of hand-holding as a romantic signal,” he wrote in an e-mail message.

Whatever degree of hand-holding may be happening, there are good reasons to cultivate the habit — reasons would-be hand-graspers may wish to pass along to their hands-in-pockets partners.

”Based on what we’ve seen, when we get more physical intimacy we get better relationships, whether a mother and an infant or a couple,” said Tiffany Field, the director of the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami School of Medicine.

Even monkeys understand the importance of a hand squeeze every now and then. In ”Good Natured: The Origins of Right and Wrong in Humans and Other Animals,” Dr. Frans B. M. de Waal, a primatologist at Emory University, wrote that some monkeys hold hands in reconciliation after a fight.

James Coan, an assistant professor of psychology and the neuroscience graduate program at the University of Virginia, has studied the impact of human touch, particularly how it affects the neural response to threatening situations, and said the results of a recent study were more dramatic than he expected.

”We found that holding the hand of really anyone, it made your brain work a little less hard in coping,” Dr. Coan said, adding that any sort of hand-holding relaxes the body.

The study, which will be published this year in the journal Psychological Science, involved 16 couples who were rated happily married based on the answers in a detailed questionnaire. The wives were put inside an M.R.I. machine and were told they were to receive mild electric shocks to an ankle. Brain images showed that regions of the women’s brains that had been activated in anticipation of pain and that were associated with negative emotions decreased when their husbands reachedinto the machine.

”With spouse hand-holding you also stop looking for other signs of danger and you start feeling more secure,” said Dr. Coan, who led the study. ”If you’re in a really strong relationship, you may be protected against pain and stress hormones that may have a damaging effect on your immune system.”

Perhaps it is why so many people crave it.

Blogs and online forums are rife with complaints of those who say their significant other does not want to hold hands. ”When we go out, we always have a blast, but the one thing that bothers me is that he never holds my hand in public,” writes a woman on a ”love advice” forum on www.lovingyou.com.

For older couples, letting go of hand-holding may be one more sign that they are pressed for time and too swamped for little acts of intimacy.

”When do we make time to hold hands?,” said Dr. Eells of Cornell, talking about his own marriage of 15 years. ”Not very often.”

The couple is often busy shuttling children to and from school and extracurricular activities, not strolling through parks like characters in a Georges Seurat painting.

Sometimes, though, even errands provide opportunities. Recently, Dr. Eells said, he and his 9-year-old daughter were caught in a downpour after her cheerleading practice. The two grabbed hands and raced off into the rain together. When they finally splashed over to the car, the damp girl turned her face to her father. ”That was awesome,” she sighed.

Illinois Bundleflower, Bundleflower, Desmanthus illinoensis…..Trinh nữ ( Mắc cỡ, Xấu hổ ) Illinois ( hoa trắng )…#1
relationship advice

Image by Vietnam Plants & The USA. plants
Taken on June 11, 2012 in Waco city, Texas state, Southern of The United States of America.

Vietnamese named : Trinh nữ ( Mắc cỡ, Xấu hổ ) Illinois.
Common names : Illinois bundleflower, Bundleflower, Prairie bundle flower, Prickleweed, Illinois Desmanthus, Prairie mimosa.
Scientist name : Desmanthus illinoensis (Michx.) MacMill. ex B.L. Rob. & Fernald
Synonyms : Acuan illinoense (Michx.) Kuntze, Mimosa illinoensis Michx.
Family : Fabaceae – Pea family
Group : Dicot
Duration : Perennial
Growth Habit : Subshrub – Forb/herb
Kingdom : Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom : Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision : Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division : Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class : Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass : Rosidae
Order : Fabales
Genus : Desmanthus Willd. – bundleflower
Species : Desmanthus illinoensis (Michx.) MacMill. ex B.L. Rob. & Fernald – Illinois bundleflower

**** plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=deil
**** www.naturalmedicinalherbs.net/herbs/d/desmanthus-illinoen…

**** www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=DEIL : Click on link to read enough information, thanks.
One to several erect stems grow from the base to 1-3 ft. (sometimes up to 5 ft.) in height. The leaves are twice pinnately compound. Six to 15 pinnae each have 20-30 leaflets. Leaves fold in strong sunlight and when touched. Small, ball-shaped clusters of greenish flowers occur on axillary stalks. An erect plant with ball-like clusters of small, whitish or greenish flowers on tall stalks rising in axils of compound leaves. Flat, leathery, twisted seedpods follow.

BLOOM INFORMATION
Bloom Color: White
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep

GROWING CONDITIONS
Water Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Moist
CaCO3 Tolerance: Medium
Cold Tolerant: yes
Heat Tolerant: yes
Soil Description: Various soils. Does not tolerate coarse sands or dense clays.
Conditions Comments: It is an erect plant with ball-like clusters of small, whitish or greenish flowers. The leaves fold in strong sunlight and when touched. Flat, leathery, twisted seedpods follow. It blooms in summer and in fall after rains. Visually, it is interesting for its fern-like leaves and bundled tangles of seed pods.

BENEFIT
Use Wildlife: Seeds are desirable for wild birds. The plant is considered a nutritious and palatable browse for wildlife.
Use Medicinal: Pawnees used leaf tea as wash for itching. Hopi used seeds placed in eye for conjunctivitis.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Interesting Foliage: yes
Attracts: Butterflies
Deer Resistant: Moderate

The somewhat similar Prairie Acacia (Acacia augustissima) has fruit 1 1/2-3 (4-8 cm) long. Prairie Mimosa and Prairie Acacia are nutritious range plants, high in protein.

**** www.pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?LatinName=Desmanthus+illinoe…
Common NamePrairie Mimosa
FamilyFabaceae or Leguminosae
SynonymsD. brachylobus. Acuan illinoensis. (Michx.)Kuntze.
Known HazardsNone known
HabitatsPrairies, river banks and fields[222, 235]. Ditches, stream bottoms, fields, roadsides and low areas, often on clay soils[274].
RangeN. America – Ohio to N. Dakota, New Mexico to Mississippi.

Physical Characteristics
Desmanthus illinoensis is a PERENNIAL growing to 1.3 m (4ft 3in).
It is hardy to zone 4 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from May to July. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.It can fix Nitrogen.

Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil.

Habitats
Woodland Garden Sunny Edge; Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Seed.
Edible Uses:

Seed – cooked. Rich in protein but without much flavour[183]. The seedpods are about 25mm long and contain 3 – 5 small seeds[235]. They are freely borne in the plants native environment, but will have to be very freely produced in this country if it is to be a worthwhile crop[K].

Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

Antipruritic; Ophthalmic.

A leaf tea has been used in the treatment of itchy skin[222, 257]. Five seeds have been placed in the eye at night and washed out in the morning to treat trachoma[257].
Other Uses : None known
Cultivation details
Requires a moist but well-drained soil in full sun[200]. Plants are often found growing in clay soils in the wild[274]. Suitable for the wild garden or other naturalistic plantings[200]. In favourable situations this plant can self-sow to the point of nuisance[200]. This plant is being evaluated by the Land Institute of Salina, Kansas, as an edible legume for growing with perennial grains in a non-tillage permaculture system[183]. It is certainly worthy of more attention in this country, though the small seed size mitigates against its use[K]. This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby[200].

Propagation
Seed – pre-soak for 12 hours in warm water and then sow in a cold frame in the spring. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots as soon as they are large enough to handle and plant them out into their permanent positions in early summer. If you have sufficient seed then it is probably worthwhile sowing some in situ in mid to late spring.

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