Monday Musings….


Few people like Mondays.  For many, the mere word causes us to groan loudly in protest, to slap the alarm in a desperate attempt to buy 15 minutes more of denial. For postponement of the inevitable.  Monday signals the beginning of the work week–a time to shift from the lazy laid-back mentality of the weekend into the more focused productivity necessary to carry us through the next five days.  We exchange comfortable clothes for workday attire; we pick up the responsibilities we so gladly abandon for Saturday and Sunday.  Perhaps this shift is the reason I’ve chosen to write on Mondays, not because I have anything particularly riveting to say but because it helps me make that mental transition. 

This particular Monday is the last one for 2013.  Think about that for a moment.  Tomorrow is New Year’s Eve; Wednesday ushers in a new year, a blank calendar of days stretching out in front of us, full of opportunity and challenge.  2013, with its triumphs and failures, its joys and sorrows, is all but a memory.  As we prepare to close that chapter, we stop and reflect.  And we think about the coming year–mostly in broad strokes, like an outline, to give us a sense of direction, an idea of what we would like to accomplish.  The details aren’t crucial at this point; those will be filled in later.  Knowing where one is headed is important, however.  Otherwise, we find ourselves adrift, rudderless in the swift current of life.

I find it significant that the New Year arrives during the Winter season, a time when the earth slumbers, a time of rest and renewal.  We draw inward, escaping the cold.  It is a time for stories, old and new, the sharing of traditions and creating new ones.  We “hunker down,” mentally, reconnecting with our inner self.  Life slows….just a little, just enough, perhaps, to allow us to catch our breath.

I dislike the word “resolutions;” like “rules,” it whispers seductively, telling us there’s wiggle room here.  A way out, or a way to fudge.  So….I don’t make resolutions.  And I won’t ask if you do, or what they might be.   As I write this, I pause to watch the birds at the feeder, busily gathering food for the day, fueling themselves on this bitterly cold morning.  Birds give no thought to tomorrow; they live their survival one day at a time.  While it’s overly simplistic to compare ourselves to birds, we would be wise to borrow a bit of that philosophy.  To remember that nothing is guaranteed, that today is precious–even if it is a Monday.

I’ll conclude with this shot of a flicker, resting on the side of a hickory tree, with the hope that your time of rest will be a productive one.

Flicker 1, Watermarked     Woodpecker   12-22-2013 007

A New Beginning . . .

I just spent the last half hour reviewing–and deleting–everything I’d posted here previously, entries and images dating back to August 2011!  I guess that demonstrates my commitment to blogging!  Originally, I joined as a way to showcase my photography but like everything else we make public, there is the danger of having one’s work hijacked.  I’ve experienced that and it’s painful, especially when the thief is a friend, someone you know and trust.  There’s little that can be done about it; you cut your losses and move on, sadder but wiser.

What struck me the most, in reviewing those old posts, was how much my photography has changed.  The photos that were posted here bear little resemblance to my current work, except as a yardstick with which to measure my growth as an artist.  I was, however, still pleased with the words I’d written.  Go figure!

I don’t think I’m the type to blog on a daily basis; my goal for the coming year is a weekly post.  That feels reasonable.  Goals should be something we can actually achieve, otherwise, we’re setting ourselves up for failure.  Failure is painful, and tends to make us withdraw.  To stop creating, stop sharing.  And that’s a loss for everyone.

I’ll leave you with this shot taken yesterday, after a 5-inch snowfall: frozen Haralson apples left on the tree.  We picked as many as we could, but these were well beyond our reach, even with ladders.

Frozen Apples, E&C    Goose; Snow   12-22-2013 049