Peace, my soul be still.

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Be still and know that He is God,untitled-4

Be still and know that He is Faithful,untitled-2

Be still oh restless soul of mine,

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Consider all that He has done, stand in awe and be amazed.untitled-3

Be Still.

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Be speechless.

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Words by Steven Curtis Chapman.

Amaryllis

God causes all things to grow
Through every season we know
He will guard the life
That He’s planted in our souls
And when we feel the cold winds blow
We’ll hold to what we know
God causes all things to grow.

Steve Green.

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HAPPY NEW YEAR FRIENDS.

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Frost, the devil is in the detail!

Pikangikum is positively stunning when the frost comes for a short visit. I get so enthralled by everything I see that if it were not for my fingers going numb from the cold I would stay outside for hours.

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The other day I decided to forget about pressing matters like finishing my counseling course reading for the week and went for a long walk…on a hungry stomach… anyone who gets me knows that I do not function well on an empty stomach but between wasting time preparing lunch or going out I opted for the latter .

 

Friend I took a lot of pictures, everything looked perfect on my camera screen. It was when I had to edit the pictures that I realized, ” Dang! editing snow and frost is a ROYAL PAIN!” I have spent many hours the past two days working on these four pictures. I wanted so bad for the detail of the frost to POP out.

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The problem with being self taught is that you come very close, oh so close to smashing your laptop because its not doing what the tutorial says must happen. Only to sheepishly realize hours later(lying in bed about to sleep)  that I had made the mistake.

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I still need way more practice fine-tuning detail in Lightroom and I do not own a macro lens. I know, patience, eventually I will get the hang of it. Philip if you see this and when you have time please tell me were I could improve  and what I should not do ever again 🙂

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Dark chocolate, milk chocolate, caramel and mocha.

Deborah is 10 years old and from a young age she has been told over and over again that her dark skin is not desirable. At first she would cry every time she was told this but now she has grown a thick skin and merely tells whomever has tried to insult her, “so what if I am dark, I am still beautiful.” Deborah has sass, intelligence and confidence, I cant get enough of the sparkle in her eyes.

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Somewhere along human history the standard was set and it was: the lighter skinned you are, the more desirable you will be. One of the meanest way to attack an African black girl is to speak about her skin tone. I know what I am talking about, I am dark skinned, I have had my share of prejudice because of this. You just learn to live with it. One hears comments such as, ” She is beautiful, if only she was not so dark.” In Mozambique there are certain jobs that lighter skinned people will have a better chance of acquiring than a dark skinned person. For some women, the pressure from males and some of their girl friends to change their appearances is so strong, it causes them to use dangerous skin lightening creams that if used continuously irreversibly destroys their skin.

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So where did this idea come from that Caucasian skin is better than Negroid skin? I don’t think there is one single reason. Here are some of my reasons; even though colonization is a thing of the past in Africa, its legacy is still alive and well on this continent. For example the idea that Caucasian people are superior in every way to us and therefore steps must be taken to be like them is still very prevalent. Even in today s politics there is often this strong under tone that for Africa to succeed it has to copy the West. Another is the movies that we watch, the beauty magazines that we read, the authors that we enjoy,darker skinned people are rarely in the spot light. Even the dolls that are sold in supermarkets are white, it is close to impossible, scratch that, it IS impossible to find a black doll in Mozambiqan supermarkets. Put all these and other reasons together and a culture is created that states lighter skin, is always, will always be better.

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Even in Pikangikum I found the same attitude amongst First Nations there. The fact that many people do whatever it takes not to tan because “dark skin is ugly.” I think some folk have said this to me completely overlooking the colour of my skin. The bullying that children pour on others who are darker than them is phenomenal.

For various reasons I don’t have a complex when it comes to my skin colour although there are days when I really get bothered by the comments I hear. I pray and hope Deborah will grow up with the confidence I see in her now, that she will refuse the push to try out skin lightening creams and love herself for whom God created her to be cause, ” dang girl, you are beautiful!!”