A Photo A Week: Celebration

A year ago, as we sold off the rest of the contents of our house, I was both excited and wary about the path we had chosen.  Two-and-a-half years confined to a bed had stripped me of the ability to dream, but my husband was not about to give up.

“I will put wheels on the bedroom and drive you across country!” he declared, and that is what he did.

BB Kings

We left mid November, after the first snow of the season has descended, and I wrapped myself in blankets, and propped up with pillows, and watched with disbelief as the scenery around me changed.  Six months we travelled, and each day was a celebration.

From the nostalgia of Beale Street in Memphis and then westward through Arkansas, and Texas, every stop along the way filled with wonder.


New Mexico’s colours and welcoming vibe made me sad we couldn’t stay longer, but there was much to see, and I wanted to take it all in.  Through Arizona, and California, then Oregon, and Washington State, I was wowed by the changing landscape, and the indescribable beauty.  Our journey reached it pinnacle on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, where we celebrated yet again in a floating dock off Protection Island.  (Featured Image).

(This post responds both to Nancy Merrill’s Photo a Week Challenge: celebration; and Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: wonder.)


VJWC#3: Nurturing Wonder

On the road, everyday is defined by a sense of adventure and discovery – an attitude I feared I’d lose on returning home.  In truth, these past six weeks of settling back in have focused on family and friends and doctors visits.  All good, and yet, already, I notice that carving time for writing is strained, and I haven’t picked up a paint brush since we landed.  I am not willing to let go of all that we gained.

Since travelling across country and back, I have developed the habit of carrying my camera with me everywhere.  This extra appendage encourages me to observe the familiar with new eyes.   This is the challenge, isn’t it?  To breathe new life into the mundane – keep vibrancy alive.

While I love the area I have lived in most of my life, seldom do I stop to consider what makes it wonderfully unique, and so this week I am encouraging a sense of wonder.

ribbitAfter a long, harsh winter (which we missed, thank goodness) nature has decided to skip spring and thrust us right into summer.  The temperatures have been unseasonably hot and humid, and the result is an early, lush greenery expanding across every landscape. What a wonderful backdrop for each discovery.

The critters, with whom we share our neighbourhood, also seem to be revelling in the change of climate, delighting my lens.  This toad showed up on my daughters back porch and elicited so much delight from my granddaughter that we were inspired to research the little guy to find out more.

chippieChipmunks are one of my favourite local denizens.  I love how they bound across the grass, darting in and out of cover, their antics almost comical.   More curious than fearful, these little cuties are easily tamed, as we discovered in our last abode.  Peanuts in the shell were accepted from open palms, and they weren’t afraid to challenge us when the supplies dried up.


GartersnakeAll across America, I’d hope to capture the image of a snake, but alas, was unsuccessful.  Found this cozy fellow coiled up on a sandy patch at the river’s edge.  He tolerated our presence for quite awhile, until Ric tried to get in closer, at which point he slithered away into the obscurity of long grass.  Don’t worry, the majority of our snakes are non-poisonous.  This is a common garter.

babysparrowThe temperatures may have soared to summery swelters, but the presence of new life is a reminder that it is still springtime.  This young sparrow  lacked the instinct to flee, proving to be an excellent subject for the camera lens.

It is easy to be grateful for life, when abundance equates with wonder.  I hope you have a wonder-filled week.