June 8, 2010


have you ever driven the "17 mile" in monterey california?
it is drool worthy.  below is the "lone cypress".  
one of california.s oldest prevailing trees to endure the harsh winds that blow through the monterey peninsula...it.s stood for over 250 years.
because of it.s symbol of fortitude it has become the trade mark for 
pebble beach.
do you ever wonder where fortitude is born?  what gives someone the courage and strength, the "firmness of spirit" to do good or carry on, 
despite the obstacles and discouragements that inevitably cross their path?
 what do you do when trials arise or the winds seem brash and endless?
just a thought that ran through my mind as i took this photo of the
" lone cypress"

{cul*ti*vate fortitude}


  1. Love that photo Chrissy. When faced with trials my first thought is, where is the chocolate? Seriously though, my sisters are definitely a major source of strength for me.

    Love to you,

  2. i retreat into myself and grow strong. only then can i move forward determined and optimistic. (for the record iwas a mere 5 miles from muir woods : (
    our paths are sure to cross when they should...


  3. Dear Chrissy-Are you taking Kelly's class too??Is it not the BEST!!!So much going on over there-I can hardly keep up!
    What keeps me going? I have had a difficult life in many respects so I have developed the inner stamina (soul strenghth) for this journey.And my husband is my biggest supporter. Love the pic of this tree:) Hugs

  4. chrissy,
    i think i'm going to cry!
    i just left you
    a comment & got to the point
    of pressing "post comment"
    & then my computer said
    "connection problems" &
    it was gone!
    i guess i now need to practice fortitude
    & try again!!
    so what do i do?
    try to wear green as often as possible
    like that brilliant cypress!
    my best secret,
    although not so secret,
    is to nap,
    & allow my soul cells
    to rest, speak to one another in the quiet,
    listen, & then get up & know what i need to do again out of that calmed space.
    i think of the lord of the rings
    & those big lumbering trees
    murmering amongst themselves
    (& don't we SO need each other?!)
    & exchanging gut gruntings
    & trunk swayings
    until they've clarified
    what path they are taking
    & then move out
    from strength to strength.
    sometimes i also
    travel lightly
    & turn up the music in my car
    & get new toe nail polish
    & colorful hair extensions
    & ride life's ocean pretty wave
    to the next place that way
    & if something scary comes up,
    i clasp my hands together
    & pray for safety
    & in everything,
    try to remember to say thank you.
    lots of love
    to that cypress
    & to your roots
    & to all the beauties
    here commenting on
    your blog!

  5. This post does me good today. Strength and courage - i think it comes from trust in life, in your roots and in your inner self and also from love!

  6. what i do when times get tough~
    curl up in the fetal position and rock~no just kidding, that is what i want to do!

    call my mom, sister or a friend and talk it out, listen to music (it makes my heart sing), get out in nature or go do something i love, organize things around me in my life and home will make my head get in the right place...
    and of course blogging and talking with all my besties online always puts a big smile on my face:)

  7. Whenever big problems or obstacles get in the way I always go to Bill for support. He's a great listener so talking it out often brings up solutions to whatever it is that's in the way. And once a plan of action is decided, then it's go, go, go...it's important to move forward despite the self-doubt and fear that most of us experience.

  8. Dear Chrissy what a beautiful post, such inspiration in your words. Just over a year ago I took that very same picture and I was so amazed at the beauty and fortitude of that lovely tree. I love your words "firmness of spirit". In this world today we need that strength and fortitude. Thank you for your words of inspiration today. I am so happy that I found my way to your beautiful blog. Have a wonderful day.

  9. chrissy...i think fortitude comes from walking thru your fear again and again...just winging in from flying lessons...great to connect

    blessings, rebecca

  10. awesome.......absolutely awesome, precious one!!! and of course, where there's fortitude, there's always a bar of good dark belgian chocolate close by.....! xoxox, :))))

  11. Oh, dear Chrissy - I have been there! Both at that spot and in need of fortitude. I have thought the same thing in reference to my hospice patients. What gives one the courage to face their difficulties with such beautiful grace while others submit to negativity?? It's not an easy answer.I'm still trying to figure it out. Last time I was feeling in need of support, I made a list of "survival tools" - things like music, light, affirmations, conversations, silence, etc. Next time I need it, I'll pull out my list and hopefully find something there that helps. Thanks for asking such a great question!!

  12. Love the post Chrissy! I visited Monterey and drove the same drive about 6 years ago. Your pictures and posts of California leave me longing to go back. Cultivate fortitude sounds like something as a mother I try to do. Reminds me of a Bible verse about a tree that is firmly planted will not move (paraphrased of course). Describes the lone cypress well! Thanks for sharing!

  13. i have driven those 17 miles and they are delicious. fortitude is a great way to describe it. my "path" when hit obstacles is exercise. a long walk or run always seems to clear my head to give me a new view of whatever it is i am facing.

  14. Thank you Chrissy, I needed this today, my plans
    changed, but it was for the best, but I had my day planned! I also use chocolate and walking as my coping tools...lol~

    This is a great tribute to rethinking our position and carrying on~ Thanks for sharing!!!

  15. thanks for reminding me of such a GREAT word: FORTITUDE...

    i will most certainly work on CULTIVATING the mindset of fortitude =-)

  16. I like the way you think...

    I retreat into myself for a while and then I ring my mum.

  17. I make a cup of tea! There's nothing like a good hot cuppa to comfort while meditating on a problem. And a cup of tea shared with someone to talk it over with is even better. Love your words Chrissy, I have just written down 'cultivate fortitude' in my inspiration/quote journal - thank you!

    Hope you are getting all caught up on flying lessons ok! :)

  18. I have a very dear friend who I call and when we connect she helps ground me. I feel like she is my rock in times of trouble. Your post gave me good food for thought.

  19. Chrissy, we sure have similar spirits!
    I have been exactly were you took your photos and stayed at the "Green Gables B&B in Monterey.
    Beautiful site. Beautiful memories..
    Love your posting.. I can see we are learning much and to take care of ourselves as well.

  20. I would love to sit still under that tree
    for an entire week and see what happens.
    Just to investigate the thoughts that surface
    and see what winds blow through my soul.

    I'm sitting here ever curious as to what would happen. Would I brave the winds? Would I let them shift me? Would I laugh, cry, fly! What glorious change would happen if I spent a week


    +I'm so happy we're taking flight lessons together! I'm learning about websites right now, catching up with this week's lessons.

    Wishing I were in Cali!

    Love you soul-sister,

  21. I love your photos and words, all over your blog! My support for fortitude is generally my husband, that is my rock, and also my best friend... but when I want to get by on my own, I take my journal and write, write... or my sketchbook and draw! Thank for visiting my blog, and happy flight! Your fellow flyer Cristina! Ciao!

  22. ~beautiful post...i hav eleft something fo ryou on my blog...you may want to sneak over and take a peak! warm wishes and brightest blessings~


  23. whoops...guess my fingers aren;t quite working this morning...have left...for you!

  24. hmmmmmm......

    i think i would like to
    sit under that tree with Carissa!!

    i pray.
    i talk to my dear sweet hubby about what i may be needing fortitude to get through or call a very dear friend....probably the one that wrote this post!!! ;)

    love your words
    love you


  25. Such a great trip isnt it. I went there a few years ago although it was quite foggy! I reach for the cup of tea and put some good music on. Music saves lives and this is how i recharge. Love you xxx

  26. I just love that cypress. It is a breath of fresh air & a beautiful image attached to cultivating fortitude. When rough winds enter my life, I always pause (whether by nap or just some quiet alone time), reflect & pray. God and my family are my comfort, blessings and loves.

    I haven't driven that beautiful area yet, but I think I need to have it on my list of things to do while we are living in CA. :-)

  27. I've visited the 17 mile drive. It was on my honeymoon-from-hell (which became marriage-from-hell), how apt given the theme of your post... Going through divorce taught me fortitude, though I didn't feel like I would make it at the time. Only friends and the healing power of time got me through. However, having survived it, I feel like nothing will ever flatten me like that again. Difficult situations show us how truly strong we can be!

  28. I have driven that stretch - it really is marvelous. Humorously, I think I took a few photos of the lone cypress before I actually got to the actual lone cypress. ;)

  29. Drool worthy! That's funny. We are traveling to Northern California this summer. Can't wait. I really want to go to Monterey now!


your comments put the biggest smile on my face!
thank you so very much!