Searching for warmth by the water on a chilly day.

A chilly wind. And an umbrella--just in case.
A chilly wind. And an umbrella–just in case.

This afternoon I went on a long, chilly walk along San Diego Bay. The sky was mostly gray. I regretted not wearing a light jacket. But I pressed on.

You never know when the sun might burst through.

The winter ice rink is being set up in front of the Hilton San Diego Bayfront. Anticipating holiday cheer.
The winter ice rink is being set up in front of the Hilton San Diego Bayfront. Anticipating warm holiday cheer.
Few people are out walking under the gray clouds. But two can always hold hands.
Few people are out walking under the gray clouds. But two can always hold hands.
Pigeons swoop in endless searching circles, before settling somewhere far away.
Pigeons swoop in long searching circles, before settling somewhere far away.
The sun is up there. Somewhere.
The sun is up there. Somewhere.
This person moving forward refuses to retreat.
This person moving forward refuses to retreat.
Time takes a toll. The Marriott Marina is slowly being refurbished. Moving forward, looking ahead.
Time takes a toll. The Marriott Marina is slowly being refurbished. Pushing forward, looking ahead.
A worker defies gravity near the Marriott Marquis.
A worker defies gravity near the Marriott Marquis.
Surfing Santa is awaiting the perfect wave. It should arrive soon.
Surfing Santa is awaiting a perfect wave–it should arrive in Seaport Village before too long.
Who is that lifting his hat! It's Mitchell, the cool didgeridoo guy! I was reminded by Mitchell that Earth's sun is a G-type main-sequence star. Nuclear fusion is pretty warm!
Who is that lifting his hat? It’s Mitchell, the cool didgeridoo guy! I was reminded by Mitchell that Earth’s sun is a G-type main-sequence star. I had forgotten. Nuclear fusion is pretty warm!
A smile like a ray of sunshine.
A smile like a ray of sunshine.

(And here I must make an apology.

While I sat on a rail speaking to Mitchell about life, the cosmos, and whatever, two smiling ladies came on by pushing a cart full of Noosa yogurt samples. Mitchell earned his sample by summoning deep magic with his didgeridoo. For my sample, I promised to post a photo of the smiling ladies on my blog–right here–where there is no photo.

Sorry. My camera beeped as if a photo were taken. But alas. My battery went dead and it turns out I don’t have that smiling photo.

I will say, however, that my Noosa yogurt was super creamy, yummy, and scrumdiddlyumptious. I really liked the bits of chocolate. I’m a sucker for chocolate.

There. Now will you forgive me?

Thank you ladies for helping to lift my spirits–it fits this theme perfectly!)

A distant kiteboarder, harnessing the chilly wind, rises above San Diego Bay.
A distant kiteboarder, harnessing the wind, rises above San Diego Bay.
Who cares about the weather? One can always make bubbles.
Who cares about the weather? One can always make bubbles.
Even during a gloomy spell, life can be very good!
Even during a gloomy spell, life can be very good! Just smile!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Art by creative homeless provides purpose, hope.

Life In A Meadow, by Chrystina W.
Life In A Meadow, by Chrystina W.

Some powerful canvases by talented artists are now on display on the first floor of the downtown San Diego Central Library. These artists all happen to be homeless.

The artwork you see in the following photos was created with the help of HEAL, a nonprofit organization that provides purpose, hope, and a creative outlet for the homeless in San Diego. Homeless Empowerment Through Art and Leadership has a Mobile Art Studio, allowing anyone on the streets to freely express themselves. Locations include Pacific Beach, Ocean Beach, and the downtown library. To learn more, click the photos of signs below and they will expand for easy reading!

If you’d like to shop for art that supports San Diego artists affected by homelessness, please visit HEAL’s Etsy store. The money from your purchase of artwork goes directly to the artist! (And please share that store’s link with your friends, too!)

If you happen to be homeless and are visiting my blog, first of all welcome! When I was young I was homeless myself for a time. But I found my way out of that maze and now have a hopeful, fulfilling life.

If you’re homeless, one thing you might consider doing is starting your own blog. You can easily start a free blog on WordPress. A public computer at the library is all you need! it’s actually pretty easy and if you accidentally mess up you can make changes or start over.

You can blog about anything that interests you. As you can see from my own blog, I like to walk around San Diego, take photographs and write short stories. After blogging consistently for a good while, Cool San Diego Sights now gets hundreds of page views every day! If I can accomplish that, believe me, anyone can! You just have to stick with it.

If you’re an artist and have a smartphone with a camera, you can use it to upload your own art online. Not only will that make you feel fantastic, and possibly open new avenues for your future, but by sharing your artwork with the world you might uplift the lives of many other people, too!

HEAL is a nonprofit that provides opportunities for creative self-expression and personal growth for individuals experiencing homelessness in San Diego.
HEAL is a nonprofit that provides opportunities for creative self-expression and personal growth for individuals experiencing homelessness in San Diego.
Many expressive works by talented artists are now on display at the San Diego Central Library.
Many expressive works by talented artists are now on display at the San Diego Central Library.
Blue Eye, by Dominique H.
Blue Eye, by Dominique H.
Fight To Be Happy, by Marius.
Fight To Be Happy, by Marius.
HEAL is Homeless Empowerment Through Art and Leadership. Their mobile art studio is free. Locations include Pacific Beach, Ocean Beach, and downtown San Diego. (Click the above image to expand it, for easy reading of days and times.)
HEAL is Homeless Empowerment Through Art and Leadership. Their mobile art studio is free. Locations include Pacific Beach, Ocean Beach, and downtown San Diego. (Click the above image to expand it, for easy reading of days and times.)
Love Is Eternal Tree, by Jolie.
Love Is Eternal Tree, by Jolie.
Geo Wood Collage, by Ben.
Geo Wood Collage, by Ben.
Circle Mandala, by Votive.
Circle Mandala, by Votive.
A Look Into My Mind, by David R.
A Look Into My Mind, by David R.
Sunny Day, by Carlos.
Sunny Day, by Carlos.
Shells By The River, by Propane Purps.
Shells By The River, by Propane Purps.
I Beseech You . . . Crows, by V The Artist.
I Beseech You . . . Crows, by V The Artist.
Memories Of The Caribbean, by Dario D.
Memories Of The Caribbean, by Dario D.
A very beautiful work of art. I apologize for not knowing the title or the artist's name.
A very beautiful work of art. I apologize for not knowing the title or the artist’s name.
Pink Sky, by Helena D.
Pink Sky, by Helena D.
River And Pine Trees, by Timothy R.
River And Pine Trees, by Timothy R.
Hindi Girl, by Shawn L.
Hindi Girl, by Shawn L.
Woman With Afro, by Dominique H.
Woman With Afro, by Dominique H.
Palms On The Beach, by Lawrence S.
Palms On The Beach, by Lawrence S.
Colorful Zig Zags, by Zak T.
Colorful Zig Zags, by Zak T.
Faces And Trees, by Vince and Leni.
Faces And Trees, by Vince and Leni.
Teal Dragon, by Kayla.
Teal Dragon, by Kayla.
Eye On A Butterfly, by Jelyn E.
Eye On A Butterfly, by Jelyn E.
Floating Face, by Kermina P.
Floating Face, by Kermina P.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Remember Me Thursday love in Balboa Park.

A best friend.
A best friend.

Every year, the lives of almost 3 million shelter animals are terminated. It’s a colossal, heartbreaking tragedy that defies understanding–because it needn’t happen. Remember Me Thursday is a global event that shines a light on the plight of shelter animals, and on the positive choice of animal adoption.

Here are a few photos from the special Remember Me Thursday candlelight vigil held this evening in Balboa Park. Those who participated gathered near the corner of Sixth Avenue and Laurel Street. The annual event was created five years ago by Mike Arms, President and CEO of Helen Woodward Animal Center.

Remember Me Thursday has spread worldwide and now hundreds of animal welfare organizations participate.

This evening in Balboa Park, hearts were lit for innocent animals in San Diego and around the world waiting for adoption. Like you, they simply want to live and be loved.

Smiles from the Helen Woodward Animal Center during Remember Me Thursday in Balboa Park.
Smiles from the Helen Woodward Animal Center during Remember Me Thursday in Balboa Park.
People gather to remember animals waiting in shelters to be adopted--and those who lost their lives.
People gather to remember animals waiting in shelters to be adopted–and those who have lost their lives.
The deeply touching Remember Me Thursday poem by Mike Arms.
The deeply touching Remember Me Thursday poem by Mike Arms.
A gathering in Balboa Park and an urgent message. Millions of shelter animals around the world simply want to live and be loved.
A gathering in Balboa Park and an urgent message. Millions of shelter animals around the world simply want to live and be loved.
A banner invites messages of hope and love.
A banner invites messages of hope and gratitude.
A wish that pets know the selfless love that they provide us while on Earth.
A wish that pets know the selfless love that they provide us while on Earth.
A few loving words for the best hamster a boy could ever have.
A few powerful words for the best hamster a boy could ever have.
As the sun sets, people wait to watch a moving video and hear the reading of Mike Arms' poem.
As the sun sets, people wait to watch a thought-provoking video and hear the reading of Mike Arms’ poem.
Many candles were then lit.
Many candles were then lit.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Are you a blogger? Do you want to help make the world a better place? You might want to join Bloggers Lifting Others Generously.

Support Veterans Village with a brick or paver.

Order a Veterans Village courtyard brick or paver and help Veterans who have been homeless, or at the risk of homelessness. Provide hope, love, compassion and understanding.
Order a Veterans Village courtyard brick or paver and help Veterans who are homeless, or at the risk of homelessness. Your donation provides real hope. The words you choose radiate compassion and understanding.

Veterans Village of San Diego provides a helping hand to those Veterans in our city who are homeless or at the risk of homelessness. This critically important organization provide housing, rehabilitation, education, job training and a safe place to regain hope and a sense of belonging.

Veterans Village also organizes the annual Stand Down, where homeless Veterans can receive a smile, a handshake, breakfast, clothing, showers, a hair cut, makeovers, plus free medical, dental and vision services. At Stand Down homeless Vets can also access court services, VA benefit and job counseling, and much more.

You can support the mission of Veterans Village by putting a special message on a brick or paver in their beautiful courtyard location. Messages of support, compassion and love will be read by many who might need a little inspiration. Your generosity makes the world better.

To learn more about Veterans Village, or if you have a question about purchasing a brick or paver, click here!

Are you a blogger? Do you want to help make the world a better place? You might want to join Bloggers Lifting Others Generously.

Combat veterans create art to bring hope.

A unique work of urban art on a car wash in Normal Heights speaks to the struggles of combat veterans.
A unique work of urban art on a car wash in Normal Heights. It speaks to the struggles of combat veterans.

Painful. Hopeful.

Those two words might describe some artwork on the side of a car wash in Normal Heights. You can find this thought-provoking mural near the corner of 33rd Street and Adams Avenue.

A nearby plaque invites curious eyes. Thank you for your service, it reads.

The mural is the work of seven post-911 combat veterans. A project of Combat Arts San Diego, it helps to spread awareness about the therapeutic benefit of creating art. And it shows the unconditional love that is provided by service dogs.

Creating art helps us to sort through conflicting thoughts and emotions. Art is an outlet for pent up pain. Art connects people. Art stirs the heart. Art provides meaning. Art offers hope.

This mural was created by seven combat veterans working with Combat Arts San Diego. Art-making benefits those with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
This mural was created by seven combat veterans working with Combat Arts San Diego. Art-making benefits those with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Art over fear.
Art over fear.
A warrior. A jumble of emotions. Isolation. A true best friend. Hope.
A warrior. A jumble of emotions. Isolation. A true best friend. Hope.

UPDATE!

Wow! Shortly after posting this I received additional info concerning this great project and a group photograph of those responsible!

I learned:

“There are hidden things in the art piece. If you look hard enough you can see Army written and Navy and others… If you look at ART in the middle on the left you will see from the A…rmy attached to it. Then on the right towards the bottom you will see the N in friends…you will see Navy… In (the word) Isolation – the A..ir Force is on the A. Just below the O in Isolation you will see some letters D E S P..if you look close at the S you will see a U in the bottom of the S and then the MC on the other side of the S. Look close.”

I also learned that the San Diego Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution raised funds for the project from their National Society.

The following photo includes Elizabeth Washburn, the leader of Combat Arts, two Vets who worked on the mural, and a few smiling local members of the D.A.R.

Group picture with Artists, Elizabeth, and San Diego Chapter of Daughters of the American Revolution members.
Group picture with artists, Elizabeth Washburn, and San Diego Chapter of Daughters of the American Revolution members. Photo provided by Kathleen Winchester.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Family prevents suicide with art, walking and love.

The Kennedy family is working hard to prevent suicide and brighten the world.
The Kennedy family is working hard to prevent suicide and brighten the world.

I was deeply moved yesterday. I met a family who is working for suicide prevention with beautiful art, walking and love. Their collective efforts were on display at the House of the Philippines lawn program in Balboa Park. (I posted photos of folk dancing at the event here.)

Elie Kennedy paints smooth rocks that she finds on a beach that her son Anthony loved. She paints those rocks on behalf of her son, who she lost to suicide in 2015. Her healing rocks radiate love. Money that she raises goes to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. She sometimes uses the hashtag #healingrocksforanthony.

The Kennedy family also raises funds for the foundation by participating in the San Diego Out of the Darkness Community Walk. You can walk, too. Such walks take place all around the United States. If you’d like, you can learn more or register for a walk here.

Positive energy flows from each member of this family. It all comes from the heart. Sin Kennedy presses leaves and creates a range of colorful artwork. Check out her Instagram page here.

Please learn more by clicking the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. With treatment and knowledge many lives can be saved. The organization also helps those afflicted with a loss, advocates for suicide prevention, and funds scientific research to prevent future suicides.

Every single life is precious.

A story about Elie's son. Painful energy is now used to create something beautiful and positive.
A story about Elie’s son. Painful energy is now used to create something beautiful and positive.
A sample of the beauty that is created.
A sample of the beauty that is created.
Sin Kennedy is also an artist.
Sin Kennedy is also an artist.
Life is precious. Art reminds us of much that is good.
Art reminds us that much in life is good.

Are you a blogger? Do you want to help make the world a better place? You might want to join Bloggers Lifting Others Generously.

Young champions fight childhood cancer!

A huge crowd of families and young heroes converged on Embarcadero Marina Park North for the 2017 Celebration of Champions!
Families, generous supporters, and many young heroes converged on Embarcadero Marina Park North this morning for the 2017 Celebration of Champions!

During my walk along the Embarcadero this morning, I encountered a legion of amazing young heroes! Courageous children who are fighting cancer–and those who have defeated cancer–were gathering with their families for the 2017 Celebration of Champions!

I learned the emotionally moving event is in its 22nd year.  It features young cancer battlers passing a simulated torch, from one hand to the next, as participants run a very short distance. Money raised supports Rady Children’s Hospital’s social, psychological and emotional support programs.

Parents of brave children who lost their battle with cancer also attend the event, in a tribute to loved ones whose smiles and hopeful hearts were in this world too briefly.

Please visit the Celebration of Champions website to learn more–and perhaps provide helping a hand.

Heading to the annual event, which honors young people who fight and have fought childhood cancer.
Folks head to the annual Celebration of Champions event, which honors young people who are fighting and have fought childhood cancer.
A youthful honor guard arrives before the ceremonies begin.
A youthful honor guard arrives before the ceremonies begin.
Later in the day, many young cancer-fighting champions will carry a simulated torch around the grassy park at the edge of beautiful San Diego Bay.
I learned that later in the day, many young cancer-fighting champions would carry a simulated torch around the grassy park at the edge of beautiful San Diego Bay.
Some very young children were excited to be greeted by princesses!
Some very young children were excited to be greeted by princesses!
Young champions would hand off a torch as they completed running a small length of the park's looping walkway.
Young champions would hand off a simulated torch once they finished running a short length of the park’s looping walkway.
Go Champions!
Go Champions!

Are you a blogger? Do you want to help make the world a better place? You might want to join Bloggers Lifting Others Generously.