Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Keeping track of time again…

We will be on the road starting tomorrow to find some warmer weather, but for now, I will finish my year in review.

July was uneventful except that our daughter Carrie had her 30th birthday.  Where does the time go?  Otherwise, we just rambled on like usual. This photo is apropos of nothing except that Carrie and I both like butterflies and it was taken in July.

In August, Greg and I drove north through New Hampshire with a stop to drive up Mount Washington, through Maine, through New Brunswick, Canada and onto Prince Edward Island – a place I’ve wanted to go for a very long time.  Then we came home via Nova Scotia, then Campobello Island and Maine where we stayed a couple of nights with our friends Linda and Brian.  A good trip all around.

Looking out over the lake in Brian and Linda's back yard.
We got lucky with a loon siting right at golden hour.
Aside from the fact that I consider Opening Day of Baseball as the true New Year Day, my year usually really begins in September.  I get busier with meetings and such.  This year was no exception.  But we had some fun, too.  Our neighbors, the McGuires, had a great pool-warming party and that doesn’t mean we all stood in their pool and peed.  It was a beautiful, mild but cool night and a wonderful gathering of neighbors and friends.  But only the kids went in the pool.

This is Walker Pond, not the McGuire's pool.
October was uneventful except for the gorgeous autumn leaves.

I started physical therapy in November for a sciatica problem and though I faithfully attended all sessions and did the exercises, I didn’t get any relief that was long-lasting.  So I was feeling a bit off-centered and old in November.  But we had a very nice Thanksgiving with the kids at a local restaurant and I continue to feel very thankful for so many things in my life with the possible exception of compressed discs in my back that my doctor says is “normal aging.”  Oh, well…

Now, here we are at the end of December and the end of another year.  My mother’s health continues to decline and another good friend has been diagnosed with cancer.  News of the world does its best to try to push me into despair.  But every day, I witness human kindness, small and grand, and it gives me hope.  I’ve been watching out my kitchen window seeing the birds, squirrels and chipmunks going about their daily business.  I think that they know more than I do about the resilience of our Mother, the Earth.  And in our inevitable way, we will join the birds and squirrels and Chip and Dale in going forward into a new year to witness the wonders and splendors of the Earth, small and grand.

My hope for you all as we enter 2015 is that your joys outweigh your sorrows on every count.  Blessed be.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Keeping track of time…

The older I get the harder it has been for me to keep track of what happens when, so a few years ago I began this habit of looking back on my year in pictures as the year ends.  So bear with me please as I go back through the first six months of 2014.

In January, Greg, Olive the pug and I decided to leave the winter weather behind and travel south to Texas.  The Polar Vortex followed us into Alabama but after that we had comfortable weather and truly enjoyed spending two weeks in the great state of Texas.

These photos will tell all there is to tell about our February.  It was cold and snowy.  But isn’t that the way February is supposed to be here in the northeast?

March was a study of contrasts for us, starting the month in the snow of New England and ending up the month in sunny, warm St. John USVI with our good friends Dona and Bob.

Spring came to us in fits and starts in April.  But come it did.

And here's one of Olive the Pug just for good measure.

In May, our son Evan moved out of the house to start a new phase of his life in Worcester, Massachusetts.  Transitions like this are inevitable but it doesn’t make them easier.  We have gotten used to just seeing Evan now and then just as we have with our daughter Carrie.  Greg and I went to Fenway Park to see the Red Sox near the end of the month and received our very own World Series rings.  We watch practically every game, so we felt we deserved them.  But as history has now recorded, we know that the Sox went from Worst (2012) to First (2013) back to Worst in 2014.  Such are the joys and sufferings of the true baseball fan.

In June, daughter Carrie and I took a road trip from Massachusetts to Ohio to visit my family and to see my mother whose health is beginning to fail rather precipitously.  It was good seeing everyone.  I also finished my Flickr 365 Project.  I took and published a photo every day for a year.  Some days it was easy.  Some days it was hard.  But I didn’t miss a day from June 25, 2013 to June 24, 2014.

To be continued...

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Blessed be...

The perfect antidote to the hustle and bustle of this time of year is a trip to Magic Wings in Deerfield, Massachusetts.  I went yesterday with my daughter Carrie and her friend from her camera club, M. J. to take a few snaps of the butterflies…

M. J. snapped this one of me and a friend.

We enjoyed the cheer of the bright flowers.

When we left, it was golden hour, which this time of year might better be called “golden fifteen minutes.”

This morning we woke to a dusting of snow.

Winter Solstice Chant

Children of the Earth,
we have come to sing to each other,
Sister to Brother,
songs of our Mother Earth.

Children of the Earth,
Autumn soon will breathe her last breath and
quick will her death bear
witness to Winter’s Birth.

Children of the Earth,
can you feel the air getting cold as
darkness takes hold and
sleep covers Mother Earth?

Children of the Earth,
we have come to sit in the darkness,
breathe in the silence,
think of our Mother Earth.
~Phillip Palmer

A peaceful Winter Solstice to all of you.  Blessed be.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Good Snowy Fences...

Here are a few fences I snapped while I was driving around in the snow last week...

The snow gives them a little pizzazz, I think.

Linking up with Theresa's Good Fences!

Monday, December 15, 2014

Fading back in…

The weather was so abysmal here last week that the whole world looked black and white…

Yes, both of these photos are in color...see what I mean?
One had to look pretty closely to even glimpse a little color.

I’m not really complaining since all the rain we had could have been snow and the snow we had was minimal and very pretty.  But all the dreariness left me in a bit of a funk.

Still, it never lasts forever and by Saturday the sun was shining again and even the squirrels seemed to pause for a minute to enjoy the mild weather.

And as I drove by Quaboag Pond on Sunday, I noticed that the pond was a bit frozen in spite of the beautiful weather and the gulls were lined up on the ice like they tend to do.  I think that’s funny behavior and I always like to stop and chuckle a bit at them and wonder what in the world they are thinking and how they decide who is going to be first in line.  So that's what I did.  Lost in thought as they were, they paid no attention to me, of course.

They did make me think that it’s time for me to get my gulls in a row and start blogging again.  I have some catching up to do and I need to get started!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Good Fall Fences...

"There is no fence nor hedge round time that is gone.  You can go back and have what you like of it if you can remember."
~Philip Dunne

Technically, fall isn't over yet even if it might feel like winter here most days.  And I happened to remember that I have fall fence pictures languishing on my hard drive so that's what I'm going to post today.

Linking to Theresa's GOOD FENCES!