Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #139: Special Moments

Life is not measured by time. It is measured by moments. ― Armin Houman

For this week’s LAPC #139, Tina asks us to share photos of special moments, which gives all of us a wonderful “excuse” to share fabulous memories. Thanks, Tina! Are you ready? Here we go!

When we are traveling, we try to see friends and family in various places in America and abroad. Often, we ask them to show us their favorite places. Fortunately for us, these visits have become special moments.

On a visit to London, our friend Barbara took us to Primrose Hill at sunset. If you look closely, you can see the London skyline in the distance. I’ll never forget this wonderful park, the evening sky and the beautiful golden light.

When our Dutch cousin took us to the Kroëller-Muëller Museum in the Netherlands, we had no idea that we were going to see the world’s largest private collection of Van Gogh’s works and a sculpture garden with intriguing modern art like this floating sculpture ‘Otterlo’ by Marta Pan. The visit and time with our cousin were spectacular.

Another special moment happened by accident on a trip to Lost Dutchman State Park in Arizona. By pure luck, we visited on a day when the wildflowers were on full display. I’ll never forget those wonderful blooms and their golden “carpet” over the desert landscape.

Another special moment, thanks to Mother Nature, happened when we lived in Gilford, NH near the banks of Lake Winnepesaukee. This image was shot on the day when the winter ice cracked on the lake. To capture this shot, I stretched out at the end of our pier. Locals call this annual event “Ice Out.”

My grandfather immigrated from a small town near Naples, and came to America when he was a young boy, leaving behind family that he never saw again. In 2011, I connected with an Italian cousin via Facebook, who is the town doctor, historian, and former mayor. Edmondo offered to meet us in the piazza of my grandfather’s tiny village in the mountains and introduce us to other relatives who still live in Volturara Irpina. In this tiny village of 3,000 people, we met Edmondo, his wife and daughter, a great aunt, and several cousins who told us wonderful stories of our ancestors and gave us a tour of the village. The mural on the left comes from the town church where my grandfather was baptized. I’ll never forget this visit and the wonderfully warm welcome from Edmondo and his family.

This last photo always makes me smile. This little toy monkey is a gift given to my husband when he was a young boy undergoing life-saving open heart surgery. He has wonderful memories of the rabbi who visited him every day when he was recovering at the Mayo Clinic, and gave him this monkey as a parting gift.

Thank you Tina for this wonderful opportunity to share special moments. We are looking forward to seeing your special moments this week and hope you can join us. In your post, use the Lens-Artists Tag and link to Tina’s original post.

Last week, you treated us to beautiful images shot with natural light. It was fun to see how the light changed throughout the day and how this impacted the colors and shadows in your images. Next week, we’re excited to announce that Beth of Wandering Dawgs will be our guest host. Welcome, Beth! Be sure to stop by and check out her wonderful posts.

In closing, thank you, as always, for your continued participation, support, enthusiasm, and creativity, which inspire us!   Have a wonderful, creative week and please stay safe.

54 replies »

  1. Funny but I never got to Primrose Hill in all my London years, Patti. Thanks for showing me what I missed. 🙂 🙂 Arizona looks pretty special too, but surely the most special has to be that monkey? Otherwise you might not have that lovely man of yours.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I love that, Jo. Yes, it’s true. Rich and his monkey are the best of all! I love that. Yes, Primrose Hill is a must when you go back. It is funny how that works. When we lived in New York City, we saw more of the sights when we had visitors! Take care and have a beautiful, sunny week, too.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. What a treasure trove of memories Patti! Your time with your distant relatives in Italy talking about family connections and your grandfather’s life must have been amazing. And of course the little monkey – words cannot express how important that must have been to have kept it all these years. Fabulous!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi, Tina. They were amazing moments, which I’ll treasure forever! I’m delighted you enjoyed them, too. It was fun to share them. Thanks for the inspiring theme!


    • Hi, MM. It was a wonderful experience. I’m so glad we did it. I’d like to go back someday. But I want to be more fluent in Italian…a work in progress!! Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts on this one.


    • Hi, Brian. Glad you enjoyed this! The visit was great. I know some Italian and Edmondo’s wife knew a lot of English, so we managed! He gave me a book he had written about one of our ancestors, so now I’m starting to read it.😀. It’s slow going for me, but fascinating, too. I hope you have a good week ahead.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Anne! Oh, “ice out” is the same term they used! “Ice in” and “ice out” are more common than I thought!! And you’re right about that little monkey. He’s a wonderful reminder of my husband’s surgery and his amazing doctor, who saved his life.😀


  3. Engaging stories, Patti! Loved you meeting Italian relatives – and all the stories you must have been told there! And the monkey – such a treasure to keep. Of course I loved the wild flower carpet too – just dreaming of flowers now is uplifting. Thank you for taking us on your very special moments!

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re very welcome, AC, and thanks as always for your lovely comments. We’ve been very fortunate to have these experiences. Rich was born at the right time because the life-saving surgery technique had just been invented. He wouldn’t have been alive today if he hadn’t gone to the Mayo Clinic and if his surgery wasn’t the very, very talented Dr. Kirklin. That little monkey is a great reminder of how he was so young to face that challenge and so fortunate.😀. His parents were remarkable to get him to the right doctor.


    • Thank you, Lisa! I’m so happy that you enjoyed them. The visit to his village was absolutely wonderful. I hope we can go back there again. I want to know more Italian when we go back!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Patti, I enjoyed your beauituful photos and stories. I’m touched by your story of meeting your relative in Italy and visiting the church where your grandfather was baptized. Oh, the little toy monkey, you and your husband have kept for these years. Thank you for sharing your special moments and sweet memories.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Amy! I’m delighted you enjoyed them. It was absolutely wonderful to meet my grandfather’s family and see his village. I’ll never forget that. And the monkey is such a wonderful symbol of a time when my husband was a young boy and facing such a difficult situation. I can’t imagine how his parents felt knowing that he’d die without this surgery. We are indeed fortunate that he has survived and thrived for all these years!! Thanks again.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Hi, Janet. Thanks so much! Isn’t it a wonderful story? I’ve been trying to convince my husband that people would be interested in his experiences at the Mayo. He’s sure that it’s not interesting!!

      Liked by 1 person

    • It’s so true, Su. We see things when friends visit that we normally don’t have time to see! It’s so funny how that happens. I’m delighted you enjoyed the stories and images, Su. I always appreciate your visits.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Great selection, I quite enjoy them esp. the wildflowers in the Lost Dutchman Park and you visiting your relatives in Italy.You must felt so excited as well as eager to see the place where your father spent part of his childhood. How amazing travel can connect us to people and make memories.
    It´s indeed well worth to share.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi, JBD. Thanks for your kind words. It was a wonderful visit to long, lost relatives! I am so happy I could make that connection with them. It is a wonderful thing–to be able to return to the places that meant so much to my grandfather. My sister has done the same thing with our Irish side of the family, too. It’s fabulous! Thanks for your thoughts!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Hi, Andre. Thanks! Brave? How? To go back to my grandfather’s village? It was actually a lot of fun. We kept wondering if he’d actually be there in the piazza, but there he was! Sometimes, it turns out there is nothing to be afraid of!


      • I have my personal story: my grandfathers parents were forced to decided during WW1: leave their ground (they were quite wealthy landowners) and stay German or stay and become Polish. The wife went away with her two youngest sons, while the father stayed with the other 6 kids. I know the town, where my grandfather was born. But, as I said, I’m afraid of investigating because of the problems resulting of the wars. My grandfather was born 1908. He was the second youngest. That’s what I was thinking about, when saying, I’m not brave enough to investigate.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Oh, of course! That makes sense. It is such a sad and troubling history, how millions of people were dispossessed, interned, killed…I can’t imagine the pain and suffering that generation went through. They are remarkable people, truly remarkable.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yep. On the other hand, I‘m quite curious visiting that region because it’s very interesting from a photography perspective. So, I‘m stuck between the options. I can’t decide 😕


  6. I liked the photo of the park in Arizona. The rock formation looks similar to one near me but the one you photographed has all those wonderful flowers blooming. Gorgeous!


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