Portrait of a maple



Maples produce seeds or “keys,” designed to spin like helicopter blades.  Strong winds carry them great distances.  Foresters class the family as invasive “pioneers,” being among the first to colonize cleared ground.

~ Daniel Butler, How to Plant a Tree

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A dark, damp day

The alcove

The alcove

The lotus is the most beautiful flower, who petals open one by one.  But it will only grow in the mud.  In order to grow and gain wisdom, first you must have the mud — the obstacles of life and its suffering. …  The mud speaks of a common ground that humans share, no matter what our stations in life.  …  Whether we have it all or we have nothing, we are all faced with the same obstacles:  sadness, loss, illness, dying and death.  If we are to strive as human beings to gain more wisdom, more kindness and more compassion, we must have the intention to grow as a lotus and open each petal one by one.

~ Goldie Hawn

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Sometimes all you can do is give up

December 2012 041a

But what avail the largest gifts of Heaven,
When drooping health and spirits go amiss?
How tasteless then whatever can be given!
Health is the vital principle of bliss.

~ James Thompson

Mr. Thompson’s sentiments seem a little extreme, but I can relate to the general idea.  The flu has infiltrated my defenses.  “Drooping” describes how I feel very well.  Rather than fight it, I’m giving up and going to bed, at least for today.  I’ll be back soon.


Comfort and joy

Be The Change

December 2012 031a

Nearing the solstice

Be the change you wish to see in the world.

~ (Mis)Attributed to Mahatma Gandhi*

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A family holiday

Maddy's flowers

Maddy’s flowers*

You can kiss your family and friends good-bye and put miles between you, but at the same time you carry them with you in your heart, your mind, your stomach, because you do not just live in a world but a world lives in you.

~ Frederick Buechner

*Dandelions are blooming like crazy across the lawn, on the pathways, in the meadows, and around the pond.

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Imitating Mother Nature

Mother Nature's Christmas decorations

Mother Nature’s Christmas decorations

Yesterday afternoon, as the sun hit the Christmas decorations adorning the yard and home of the neighbor across the street, the sparkle and shimmer reminded me of the morning frost at sunrise.  I delighted in the idea that Christmas decorations are a way of imitating Mother Nature’s glitz and glam.  You might think I was the first person to think of this idea.  You’d be wrong, of course, but you might think it based on how delighted I was with the thought. Read the rest of this entry »

Wintry magic in the meadows

Shades of blue

Shades of blue

Bundle up.  We’re going on an early morning walk and it’s cold.  In the 20’s cold.  Dress in layers and be sure to include a hat and warm gloves or mittens.  I’m wearing my mitten-gloves with a pair of liner gloves underneath because I’ll be taking photos and experience has taught me to protect my fingers.

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