I cannot drive past a sunflower field without stopping. Mother Teresa said it best. “We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature – trees, flowers, grass- grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence… We need silence to be able to touch souls.”
I love color. I would say that my favorite color is yellow and I think it’s because it’s bright and cheerful. A sunflower field makes me think of a bunch of smiling faces looking at me. Today I stopped by the field a few times as the sun changed its angle so I could take photographs in different lighting. On my first stop, the farmer, who planted the field, and his wife were there cutting sunflowers to sell. I thanked him for planting the gorgeous field. I thanked him the last time he planted it too. I think he thinks I’m funny – to him it’s a means to make a living – to the rest of us it’s a field of sunshine. Each time I stopped by today I met someone new. Most people can’t drive by the field without stopping to soak up the beauty, take some photos and/or to buy some sunflowers. I met a sweet couple photographing the field, taking a leisurely walk and searching for the perfect sunflower to take home. Later, I met a family with two little girls, one of whom had me convinced that the field smelled like honey. It was fun watching them in awe of the gorgeous field at sunset. I think the world needs more sunflower fields. I will do my part by sharing the photos and I will keep stopping by until the last sunflower blooms.
I’ve always wanted to explore, or at least see Alaska. I did go to college for Wildlife Biology and although that is not the degree that I graduated with, it was not a lack of interest nor passion that made me switch majors. What I really wanted to be was a National Geographic Photographer, but exactly how was I to do that and have a family and be a wife/mom? So, especially because I was going to marry a pilot who would also be gone because of his career, I had to make a choice between struggling to do that and having and raising a family. I chose the latter and a career that would navigate me through the fjords of human emotion. Last week I was blessed to be able to take a cruise on a ship that navigated me through a fjord in Alaska and was blessed again with being able to experience the beauty that made me want to be a wildlife biologist. I saw whales and sea lions and seals and eagles, all in their natural habitat. I saw glaciers that came right down to the ocean or river and I saw a glacier calve in the silence of a fjord in the wee hours of the morning. Seals/sea lions were floating on little icebergs that broke off of the glacier. I saw unspoiled gorgeous landscape that can only be accessed by boat and/or plane. Some of this I captured in photos and some is only imprinted on my memory. I only saw a smidgen of Alaska and some of Seattle and Victoria, BC. I met some wonderful people and had the best time with the best traveling buddy ever. I learned about bible journaling and diving into the word of God with paint in hand. God painted this gorgeous world and it’s OK to paint gorgeous pages onto the Word of God! As a matter of fact, I’m sure that it makes him happy. So, here are a few photos that cannot begin to do the lovely works of God justice, but I continue to try! I look forward to keeping in touch with the wonderful people that I met on the cruise and delve more into the word of God in my journaling bible!
In the Autumn I have always loved the time in September where the last cycle of monarchs hatch and get ready to migrate. We would always find the caterpillars eating the milkweed – so I always let the milkweed grow in my gardens and have even planted different kinds. I became a part of monarchwatch.org and started tagging them to see where they ended up. Three years ago, in the fall we didn’t see one caterpillar and I never saw a monarch. The same thing happened last year. I’ve been worried about the Monarchs. This year they are back! The caterpillars have been eating our milkweed and I’ve seen chrysalis’ and over the last few days our yard has been decorated with monarchs in flight and many stocking up on nectar from our purple wild flowers (ok, so I have complained to my husband that he let the purple flowered weeds grow up near the grapevines- and thank heavens he did because it’s become a nursery for newly hatched monarchs!). I’ve spent many patient moments trying to catch the perfect photo as the newly hatched monarchs spread their wings to dry them and exercise for flight. They are gorgeous blessings and in my opinion the most awesome example of God’s amazing work.
Ever since moving from Maine 20+ years ago – I have to go back – only that place sings to my soul like no other – no matter how short a visit may be – each summer I try to go and “stock my pond” to inspire me through to the next summer. I can take photos – but nothing can capture the smell of the salt air, the balsam fir – the feel of the foggy misty days with the sound of fog bells dinging off shore or the sound of loons calling to each other. This summer we packed a lot of adventuring way up north into just a few short days – it was well worth it! (For the sake of accuracy: The last 6 photos were on our way home in NH or Vermont).