Finding Beauty

Posted by Tasha on February 28th, 2012 in Attractions, Culture, Free Stuff to Do

Philtower downtown Tulsa Oklahoma

Today’s guest post comes from Sarah Neal, a lover of all things beautiful and all things Tulsa. Follow Sarah on Twitter, @boldface.

I think there’s something amazing within us that diminishes as we get older. It’s this incandescent quality that radiates inside when we’re young—the ability to see wonder in the world around us.

Time passes; the pencil lines on the doorframe are marked higher with each passing year until they cease to measure. We grow up, as we should. However, our ability to marvel at the small things in our world tends to dull. Jobs, family, deadlines, and life’s responsibilities pile over us like heavy, winter coats, the light growing dimmer with each added layer.

By now, some of you are asking, “This is What does this have to do with Tulsa?”

Actually, it has everything to do with our beautiful town. It’s also about us.

We live in a city that’s a lovely mosaic of old and new. Empty lots are transforming. Steel beams are being raised and riveted together, while paying homage to the grand heritage that surrounds it. I love this about Tulsa. We preserve the historical voice that resonates in harmony with the new. Yet it’s people who see and cherish this historical beauty—the distressed brick, the brass doors, the worn facades—that help preserve it. The ability to see the small, and often overlooked details have been instrumental in revitalizing many areas in Tulsa. Downtown is one of them. And then there’s my personal favorite, the Brady District.

Now about you. This is the good part. You ready?

Take time to stop and see the beauty around you. It’s something you need, but you don’t know it. It’s still there, hidden under those layers.

Like most of you, I work behind a computer most of the week. I’ve taught myself to carve out a few moments to turn off the TV, laptop, cell phone, and music (the most challenging part for me), and be quiet. I take a walk outside or go to a museum. I turn off the noisy thoughts to heighten my senses. I stop to feel the cold winter air on my skin, to hear the sound of a distant train as it blows its horn and beats its perfect rhythm along the tracks. The best part is, I never experience the same things twice. The world is new again, and the light shines bright once more.

Take the time to explore this beautiful town. If you live somewhere else, stop to savor the area where your roots are planted. It’s those quiet but fleeting moments in our lives when we realize how small we are, and how the world around us will not cease to display its wonder, even when we don’t notice it. So go out there, people. The world is waiting…

Brady District Violin Shop Tulsa Oklahoma

I mentioned the Brady District. The Tulsa Violin Shop (200 N. Main Street) has always been one of my favorite places there. Old, abandoned violin cases and parts hang on wires in the windows. I’ve always wondered who owned those violins, and what beautiful songs they played in their glory. On the day I snapped this photo, the owner was sitting at his desk, reading his notes and listening to Bach. The light inside glowed golden on an overcast day.

Philtower downtown Tulsa Oklahoma

My Grams hands. Her set of green, Fostoria glasses and matching, vinyl tablecloth. So many of her recipe secrets were shared at this table.

Photo of the interior of the Philtower taken by my friend and local photographer Evan Taylor. The art deco is so beautiful. Each carved stone and marble tile has a story to tell. Sit down and listen.

Blake N. Behrens and Eric Lyons have been photographing this lonesome tree on the NW side of OKC for over two years. Others have even joined in and contributed to the Treecult. A solitary, weathered tree that has raged against time, storms and drought, only to grow stronger—a resilient soldier.

Oklahoma sunrises. They soothe the soul. (Photo by Jason Blair)

These are a just a few moments I, and others have captured. Find yours.


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2 Comments to Finding Beauty

  1. Cartomante Melissa

    On April 8, 2012 at 12:43 pm


    Definitely imagine that that you said. Your favorite justification appeared to be on the internet the easiest factor to be mindful of. I say to you, I certainly get annoyed at the same time as people think about issues that they just do not recognise about. You controlled to hit the nail upon the top and outlined out the entire thing with no need side effect , folks could take a signal. Will probably be back to get more. Thanks

  2. Jim

    On September 18, 2012 at 4:40 pm


    Wow. What wonderful advice, Sarah. This is so true for everyone, everywhere. The happiest I am in life is when I’m noticing the beautiful arrangement of insignificant moments.

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