Joyful Life

Take Up a Hobby For a Joyful Life

Photography was my hobby before Joe and I became a couple. Then after our wedding things changed. Joe watched a lot of TV and wanted me to do what he was doing – so I watched a lot of TV with him.

Then when he passed I had trouble figuring out who I was as a single person. One day while cleaning out my closet, I came across my film camera and decided to get back into photography. The first thing I did was upgrade my camera to a Cannon EOS Rebel Xsi.

I dove into figuring out how to use it and began taking pictures everywhere. It gets me out of the house, seeing various places in Ohio, and getting my exercise by walking.

McKinley Monument, Canton, OH
Bonnie Park, Strongsville, OH
Mapleside Farm, Brunswick, OH
Alderfer-Oenslager wildlife sanctuary
Ohio Erie Canal Lock, Independence, OH

Due to car issues, I’ve had to stay in the local area and sometimes be content with photographing the sights in my backyard.

The car issue was resolved last October so I will be able to boldly go farther distances once the weather warms up and this nagging cough is gone.

It was good for me to get back to photography as it makes me look at things from different angles. Coincidentally, I done that at various jobs through out my career – find unique ways to solve problems by viewing them in ways other people don’t see.

I also look at the world around me and think “Oh, that would make a good picture.” You do not want to know how many pictures I have on my computer. It would boggle your mind.

So decide to take up a hobby in order to refresh your mind as you use it in a different way from your normal daily activities. It will help you lead a joyful life.

Mallards joyfully gathering at the park. (March 2020)

Related Resources: OgleOhio my photography blog that I started in 2012 because while one blog is good, two is better.

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to inspire widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s currently using those skills as a virtual logistics contact center representative for a Fortune 100 company. She’s also managed call center teams, co-facilitated a grief support group, and helped small businesses with various writing assignments. Michele is a bookworm, and a lover of history, music, chocolate, red roses, and golden retrievers. She is also the amateur photographer behind the blog


Pictures Of A Day In The Life Of A Loan Officer

Shortly after Joe passed, I upgraded from film to a digital camera (Cannon Rebel). Photography was one of my hobbies before Joe and I became a couple and I quickly returned to it after he passed.  It was a casual hobby the first year but once I got laid off,  at the start of the 2nd year, I was back into photography full force.

Photography brings me such peace and joy.

Most of the time, I have either the point and shoot or the Cannon by my side. I had the point and shoot at work with me when I looked out my window and saw my credit union members munching on leafy greens, smooching and singing. So I grabbed the camera and started shooting Scarlet, Rhett, Ashley and Al (as in Pacino).

Here is a rare glimpse into a loan officer’s day at work.  (Excuse the glare from my window.)


Rhett Butler searching for leafy greens

“Fiddle-dee, dee – It’s Rhett Butler!”


"Frankly my dear, I do give a damn....I do, I do, I do."
“Frankly my dear, I do give a damn….I do, I do, I do.”

Scarlet & Rhett - Together At Last.
Scarlet & Rhett – Together At Last.

Here Come Ashley!
Here Comes Ashley!

A Few Minutes Later…

Shortly after I took the pictures, I heard singing – very loud singing.  I looked outside to see if there was a bird in the trees or in one of the bushes by the air conditioner. Imagine my surprise when I realized the serenade was literally coming from outside my window.  So without further adieu…

“Say hello to my little friend.”  I call him Al.



Sorry if you actually thought I was going to violate privacy laws and reveal all the nitty-gritty details of what goes on at work.

Thank You

Thank you God for blessing me with a job where I have a spectacular view – all created by you.


Rommie & Michele’s Backyard Safari Adventure – “Doe A Deer”

Well, I do not know why Mom called this “Rommie & Michele’s Backyard Safari Adventure” as I was asleep in the foyer when this happened. Shame on Mom for not waking me so I could greet my guests.

Mom said she took most of these pictures through the sliding glass door as she was afraid opening it would scare them off.  She did manage to quietly slide it open and snap a few picture.

Mom and I are so blessed because not everyone has a scenic view like we do.  So I hope you enjoy Mom’s snapshots.

Love, Hugs and Sloppy Wet Kisses to all!



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2 deer in woods and lilac bush

Deer # 3 looking for the other two.
Deer # 3 looking for the other two.

All 3 looking at camera ( you can only see the eye of one deer by the tall green leaves.
All 3 looking at camera ( you can only see the eye of one deer by the tall green leaves.