55 – Stones *

Special thanks to Jennifer (USA) and Donna (Canada) for the photos of their west coast beaches. I saw Jennifer’s images on Facebook in January, and then reached our for her approval for this post. Realizing I needed one more, I later noticed Donna’s opening image on one of her posts. Donna blogs at Retirement Reflections.

Click the video above for 2 minutes of background waves while reading.

I like walking on the beach. It is good for the mind, body, and soul – and refreshing on my feet.

Sand is the beach’s soil. Sand is a dry soil, yet sea oats seem to be a plant that can strive at the beach. As I walk across the beach toward the water, the sand here is very fine in texture. Whether walking or standing, those grains of sand are tiny stones. Although they can sparkle, they certainly aren’t gems.

I think about how individual grains fusing into pieces of sandstone of various sizes. Thoughts of sandstone remind me of my hometown – a place squeezed into the tiny space between the hills and the Ohio River with the exposed sandstone faces staring at the river.

I think of my hometown church composed of large sandstone blocks that are 25 inches (63 cm) thick. A church built in the late 1800s with the sandstone providing an old appearance because sandstone collects dirt. But I also remember how the church sparkled after a sandblast cleaning in the late 1980s. 

I think about the last beach I walked in Italy. It wasn’t good for walking – not even close to this beach. Not only would each step sink in the less- firm sand, but many stones also shared the beach. Stones of many kinds, colors, and patterns. Most, if not all, smooth to the touch. So many beautiful stones, I could spend a lot of time looking through them while wondering what I could do with them. 

The presence of marble surprised me – seemingly from the nearby mountains. Some as large chunks moored in the sand as permanent monuments for climbing, standing, and sitting. Other times, marble seemed embedded in other stones – embedded forming patterns for a unique appearance.

Although as beautiful as they may be, none of those beach stones are gems – the ones we polish and shape for beauty – rubies, diamonds, emeralds, and others such as amethyst – my birthstone.

My mind switches elsewhere to geodes – those spherical egg-shaped stones appearing very uninteresting on the outside but loaded with an inner beauty of sparkling crystals around a hollow space. Each crystal being different, beautiful, and unique – each crystal symbolic as if they could speak. 

A geode’s unattractive outside symbolically causes us to look deeper within ourselves and others to find the hidden good. Sometimes one may find a geode with a hole on the outside allowing one to peer into the inner wonders. Others may be lucky to find two pieces that go together and click into one.

I think about granite with its variety of colors, textures, and patterns –  patterns from granite combining with other minerals. Granite that the skilled cut and polished for kitchen counters or chiseled and aped for statues and tombstones. 

Stones are old – an age-old enough most of us cannot perceive – and to think they were not products of the Stone Age. However, stones are a symbol carrying a story of geologic history.

I think about stones as building blocks. Whether for walls, buildings, castles, or fortresses, humans built these structures one stone at a time. We can say the same can of us as individuals with one stone representing a life experience. Therefore, like a wall, many stones compose us. 

I think about sculptors and their ability to foresee a finished product from a large stone. Granite, marble, alabaster, basalt, limestone, soapstone, and more – stones chosen because of their hardness or softness, appearance, and ability to endure. Stones that have given humanity David, the Taj Mahal, Parthenon, Acropolis, the Great Sphinx, statues and busts of heroes, and countless other treasures – let alone places like Stonehenge and Easter Island. 

I think about how stones are thoughts from the quarry of our minds. Thoughts paralleling the sculpture’s vision. Thoughts that start as an idea, but end as an innovation. But those stones from the brain may simply be personal motivators or remembrances – like stepping stones that guide the way on a path. Stepping stones we also use to signify learning. However, there are times when a fork in the path forces us to choose because there may not be a sign marking the path not to take.  

I think about those who say nothing is set in stone because it is change that is constant. Meanwhile, motivators ask us to leave no stone unturned when preparing or problem-solving. However, one never knows what one can find under each stone.

People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones, let alone try to hit two birds with one stone. Although their ideas cast in stone make them stone deaf, sticks and stones may break their bones, but names will never hurt them. Hopefully, they won’t hit a stone wall to become stone broke, then try to get blood out of a stone. But I am confident that none of these people are the Rolling Stones, the Stone Temple Pilots, or Sly and the Family Stone.

Using stones and rocks seems to be problematic. To some, stones and rocks are synonyms. To others, stones are pieces of rocks – and to others, rocks are pieces of stone. To confuse the situation, stones seem more personal, meaningful, important, and precious – but those with a pet rock may disagree. Maybe the choice between stones and rocks is a personal one- so you decide.

Stone – a natural substance for statues, monuments, obelisks, jewels, gravestones, and building materials. Some more precious than others, but still stone. As I look down at the sand, I wonder: Is each grain of sand a stone? You can decide. After all, I like walking on the beach because it is good for the mind, body, and soul – and refreshing on my feet.

See what other bloggers have written about stones

Next PostDreams – Saturday 27 March @ 1 AM (Eastern US)

Follow Beach Walk Reflections

  • Facebook (BeachWalk Reflections)
  • Instagram (BeachWalk Reflections)
  • Twitter (@ReflectionsWalk)
  • WordPress (Follow or Subscribe)

104 thoughts on “55 – Stones *”

  1. Interesting thoughts on stones, Frank. I’m not a collector but I do love the shapes and feel of smooth, rounded ones. Our little patio has a pebbled area with cream coloured stones with a pink vein. It’s just a backdrop for a few plants, and in whimsical moments I make seashell flowers out there while the others grow. 🙂 🙂 I love a rocky shoreline too. Lovely soothing music in your video today.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Jo,
      Ah ha … a stone lover, well, ones associated with water …. smooth, rounded, striking veins … I’m with you … and I’m confident you would love the Italian beach I mentioned. Glad you enjoyed the music – with is also a wonderful ballroom waltz.

      Like

  2. A very thoughtful post on stones, Frank. The river beach near me is all stones. Sometimes I pick one up just to rub or admire its shape or color. There are also old houses in this region on both sides of the river that have fieldstone construction.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I think of sand as miniscule bits of stone – having been larger bits of stone in their incredibly long existence. I love river stone – washed smooth by the water continuously polishing them through time. HUGE stones can be building blocks – a la ancient Egypt or mystical monuments such as Stonehenge. Once in a while I can be out walking through my own yard and will see a shiny glow from a stone – we have a great deal of quartz in our rocks here. I think that shine is my cue to pick up the stone and inspect it closely….my favorites go atop a low stone wall surrounding our back garden to be admired again and again. Great post and wonderful (again) music today Frank!

    Pam

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pam,

      Hooray – cheers to another who enjoys water-polished stones. … and those stones with quartz do capture our attention! You indirectly point out another key point – many stones are also regional/local signs of the area. Sure, water can move stones, but the odds of either one of us finding marble in our areas are quite slim. I also think of when in the NE – an area you love – and the presence of granite, which is so beautiful. Glad you enjoyed the music, which is also a wonderful ballroom waltz. So when I found it with images of stone, I knew it was a must-use!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. “… stones are thoughts from the quarry of our minds”. What an absolutely brilliant sentence! I love stones. I love to hold them, I love to skip them across the water and I love to think what they have witnessed over the millennium. I spent time in a town that was built on bed rock and so much of it showed through. I would play on stones that were literally as old as the country, the world. What a sobering thought.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pam,
      Thanks for sharing a bit of your love for stones! Their age is beyond my comprehension – let alone how the area formed. Cheers to your memories of the town built on bedrock. Quarries in the area? I mentioned the sandstone in my hometown, but it was also on the outside bend of the river. The outside banks is where stones would accumulate – the inside banks had some sand.

      Like

  5. Frank, I have always liked stones and had my first rock collection when I was six or seven. I still have geodes on display. This is a lovely post, with beautiful photos and music, and a wide-ranging and engaging reflection on the topic of stones. I especially enjoyed the idioms. ❤ Have a great day!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love buildings that are made from or incorporate stone. I marvel at the way craftsmen for centuries have brought the beauty and strength of stone into our lives. Nice thoughts today, Frank. Kudos to the duo of photographers.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Ah, Frank, I love this! You know my love for rocky / pebbly shores. Pebbles and rocks also create a multitude of sounds. From light relaxing soft sounds as the water runs through them to violent whitenoise as the wave crushes forcefully on the rocks. I love all of them! Beautiful walk, my friend and photos by Jennifer & Donna.
    Yamas!

    Like

  8. I enjoyed all your thoughts/reflections/inspirations on sand/stones/rocks. No one wants to be between a rock and a hard place, and yet, life seems to place us there. Unless we’re walking on a beach – with smooth sand and soothing surf. Then the openness invites in so much peace.
    LOVELY photos and thoughts.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Just removed a great big stone from our driveway, an example of how stones are not always where you would like them to be. 😉 I, too, enjoyed all your thoughts on sand, stones, and rocks. As always, lovely, lovely music, this one lush and sad.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laurie,
      Thank you for the kind words. Lush and sad is an interesting combination in music, but that description fits this beautiful waltz. I’m attracted to its lushness. In terms of stone. I think about that rich granite that is in the northeast. I also imagine many stones on the land – therefore I’m not surprised of a large one in the driveway.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Wonderful meditation on stones. I love walking the rocky beaches near me. It feels like I am getting a bonus reflexology massage on my feet at the same time that I am letting my thoughts fly and absorbing the sights and sounds of nature. Thank you, Frank.

    Deb

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Donna,
      THANK YOU for coming through on the first photo. I had the last three, but knew I wanted one more. When I saw yours, I immediately knew it was the one! 🙂 Glad you enjoyed this walk and the music – which is a beautiful waltz for ballroom.

      Like

  11. I think I created a stone collector in my niece when we had to wait outside for her mother while she was in an appointment. She still likes them and is close to 30 now.
    There are some very interesting “species” of stones out there. And how cool that a sparkly geode is hidden behind such drab outfit…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dale,
      I too enjoy stones – but I’m not a collector. I still have a large geode (a half of a basketball) that a good friend gave me almost 50 years ago! Stones on a beach remind of the beach in Italy that I mentioned in the post and the beaches along Lake Michigan. So many of us love smooth beautiful stones … and yes … there ar so many varieties of stones in nature. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Neither am I.
        The river behind my grandmothers was hell to swim in as the whole bottom was river stones. My grandfather dug to the sand in one area for us kids… The flow of said river has pretty much returned them, since.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. Beautiful writing, almost stream of consciousness at some points. I’m a stone lover as well, but until just now didn’t appreciate the geologic history aspect. When I think about stones these days, rather than simply enjoying them, I think of Sisyphus rolling one uphill for eternity…The quarried imperfect stones of which Jung built his Bollingen castle. But also the rejected cornerstone of the Christian faith which inspired Jung.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Really enjoyed this one today. A small house is being built for me at the farm. The front is all hand carved sandstone that once lined the walls of an old cold house that used to sit behind the farm house.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Love all the photos and enjoyed your thoughts on stones, Frank, especially that comparison of the inner beauty of the geode to that of a person. I’m sure we all remember that “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt/harm me.” NOT a true statement at all. In an era of bully and nasty words being thrown around in public in social media, and in the press multiple times per day, we should stone that statement out of existence.

    In Arizona, many yards have stones around whatever’s planted rather than grass, which takes tremendous amounts of precious water. I have two stones that I found somewhere that are smooth and just the right size for holding in my hand and rubbing while I’m watching TV or just thinking. I also have what would look like a partial geode, full of crystals, that I found one day while my s-i-l and I were on a walk in France. I found another that same day that I left with her while bring the other home. That was a high point of the walk!

    janet

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Janet,
      Oh wow … you found two geodes on the same day in a foreign country? Now that’s awesome! I have a geode that a good friend in college gave me. I’d say a bit smaller than a half of a basketball. Still have it almost 50 years later! Glad you enjoyed the photos. For me, stones on a beach were a perfect fit for the walk, so when I saw them, I respectfully acted. Even sent the person an email so they can see the post. She was very appreciative. Meanwhile, I see your point in today’s world of bullying! So true – yet so sad.

      Like

      1. I’m in Dublin…. about 30 mins from the city … the beaches around here are stoney but sandy further along the coast in both directions….
        I’ve been to the US several times but haven’t made it to the northwest yet …some day….

        Liked by 1 person

  15. I am so delighted that you wrote on this topic – as your writing is like a full meditation on an object that you choose. I think I haven’t yet admitted to myself how much I have always loved rocks and stones. My courtyard and some parts of my home are strewn with collections of rocks and stones of different variety and color from my various beach visits. They are a comforting reminders of the happy times I spent picking them.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I have several little collections from various beaches in California 🙂 And just about one from a public beach in Hawaii as I have been mindful of not removing them from their native lands. I have some memorable ones like the small colorful ‘moonstones’ from a similarly named beach, the green shades of tiny glowing ones from the glass beach, and a large heart shaped rock from elsewhere.

        Liked by 1 person

  16. Love those words and images here Frank.. Geodes so many exciting things to find hidden within… And Sand stone… We had a sand stone quarry not that far from where we live… My Dad used to quarry Lime Stone…. Actually drill into the walls of the quarry hung over the edge on a rope and plank.. LOL… Health and safety wouldn’t allow that these days lol…
    Fluorspar also another wonder, that glistens and twinkles…
    Always love those rounded pebbles washed up on beaches and wonder upon their journey.. How many years did it take to wash them that shape.. Where did these stones originate from.. and then you look at the grains of sand and ponder a few more million years of wear and tare… Lol…
    Lots of food for thought Frank..
    Thank you my friend… Always find your posts rich and deep…
    Have a lovely weekend
    🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sue,
      Wow! Stone has played a big role in your life! From that, I can see why you enjoyed this post so much. I have never seen a geode in the wild – but maybe someday I will. They are definitely a geologic treasure. Thanks for sharing bits of your story and your wonderment with stones.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I once saw a man on TV who knew what he was looking for, who broke open a stone to reveal an Ammonite fossil inside…. He literally knew just how to hit the stone to crack it open.. Fascinating stuff…
        My Dad also used to do dry stone walling too helping farmers rebuild limestone walls in the Derbyshire Dales.. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  17. I enjoyed the pebbles from your mind about stones (and rocks). When I think of stones and beaches, I recall the agates my grandparents collected on the Oregon beaches and polished. Grandpa made me a bracelet of some.

    My most incredible stone experience was the Colorado River trip through the Grand Canyon. We were with geology professors and I was amazed at the variety. It isn’t just sandstone!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Eilene,
      Thanks for the kind words and glad this walk sparked a few memories for you. I can see how a person would make bracelets from stones., so cheers to your grandfather. Going through the Grand Canyon with geology professors had to be quite the learning experience. Each of those layers telling a great story. Thank you for sharing. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Lovely post Frank. When I think of stones it brings to mind water fountains, brooks or streams. I love the sound of water, and I like the look of stones in water or fountains, or decorative in landscapes. Either outdoors in the middle of nature, or, ahhhhhh… at a spa! (which I mostly just see on TV and it makes me want to go). Oh darn, now I want to go to the spa! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I like the smooth pebbles on a beach, Frank, and my crystal thumb stones. Links to the past each and every one!
    You have me thinking about stones and rocks… to me stones are smooth and rocks are jagged… but the smooth stones in a babbling brook are rocks. I’m easily confused!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Hello Frank!
    I’m feeling somewhat stoned today. Had an AZ vaccination yesterday, and have mild side effects.
    I should have a glass of wine, and make it more justified.
    I couldn’t help but think of “stones are a symbol carrying a story of geologic history” and also human history. Stones made up some of the very first tools, and weapons. Although, the idea of stoning a person as punishment is gross. It might be a part of history, but I think that slice still exists today, remotely.

    Your thought and reflections are of the most positive nature.
    Hope I didn’t mess things up with where my thoughts went.
    After all, I do feel stoned. Think a lie down is in order!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I also meant to mention the wonderful photography. I will check the blogs and pay them a visit when I come by to read your Saturday reflection!

        Like

  21. The sand always possessed a magical quality to me. To think of the infinite grains on one stretch of beach, multiplied by all the others? Wow. And the feel, always different depending on when you walked it. First thing in the morning during a run, you brook the water and the sand and it provides an exhilarating sweat. At the height of the day it can be scorching hot and at night, soothing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Marc,
      Those infinite grains are wonderful – and yes – always different and ever-changing. Gotta love it.

      OH – I imagine you are happy with the big trade today with your Fins moving down a few slots. Watch for this – the Bengals signing another OL free agent then drafting Chase or Pitts at #5.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Always different.

        What Chris Grier did should be taught to future GM’s. It was literal brilliance. Moving out of the top ten and collecting more draft capital, then using that newly acquired capital to move back into the top ten. Also, in doing so they basically control the top of the draft now. Because we know that with SF in the top five, at least three or four quarterbacks are going off the board. Which means we get out choice of Waddle, Smith, Chase, Sewell or Pitts. Genius.

        Liked by 1 person

  22. Anyone experienced in walking the beaches knows how different the experience depending on whether there are rocks or pebbles, or smooth sand. I didn’t like the rocky beaches when I was a kid, but I think they’re among my favorites now. The more rocks, the better the tide pools. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Beautiful photos along with your lovely walk, Frank! I used to be a collector…and I still have to stop myself from picking them up…Most of my neighbouring beaches are nature reserves, so it is not allowed to collect stones. Good!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ann-Christine,
      Cheers to your love for stones. At least the beaches of your natural reserves allow you to enjoy them and help you resist your temptation. Thanks for sharing. The beaches I visit are not like the ones in the pictures, which is one reason why I wanted to use pictures like these.

      Like

  24. beautiful walk with you Frank with so many stones and hard to belive how deep they go!
    Love the drift wood pics you shared to go along with them and the gushing water … I felt like I was right there with you… thanks!💖

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Oh my God! We just went this past week and went for that walk along the shore and Baywatch run down the beach! And … And went on a rock scavenger hunt! It was great getting there early in the morning when no one was around picking up stones with different shapes, textures, and sizes. Sometimes my kids tried throwing them back other times they’d be too cool looking to send back to the ocean. They definitely carry Earth stories with them! Love that thought! PLUS! These pics are so good. Really enjoyed them 🙂 thanks for posting and making me smile. I enjoyed getting jazzed up about beach stones. They rock 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  26. It’s incredible when you think about it, but the stones, pebbles, and the grains of sands that make up our favourite beaches have formed over millions of years. They’ve certainly been through a lot. – imagine the stories they could tell!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.