Seed heads in their dessicated, skeletal beauty. There is something fey and otherworldly about their silent winter appearance. Today they swayed gently in the icy wind, my hand steadying them for a capture. If you teach yourself to stop and look, there is always something, even in the depths of winter within the hedgerows showing you it's simple charm.
Monday, 8 December 2014
It has been quiet on this blog for a while now. This year I changed jobs, a huge change for the better, and I have nearly finished the first module in a creative writing degree. The writing here on this blog started the move towards story writing for me. The writing here has been so valuable in developing me as a writer, and in me making writing a bigger part of my life.
I've been thinking a lot recently about what makes us happy, what keeps us afloat and without a doubt for me it is making sure I do a range of things that add up to a whole, balanced individual self. I'm sure you get a sense of those things from my posts- they are varied and multiple. Some are robust and healthy like regular walks in the wood and others are off track and fragile as spider's webs. They are like a web, a complex knit together of activities, actions and things that when balanced make a little seam of happy. I'm sort of quite proud of that, that I have begun to realise I can take control of my life. And at the same time I'm desperately sad for those who through illness, sadness and pain remain without these feelings of hope.
Writing plays a huge part in this for me. There is nothing like the small ripples in my brain when a person or a story or a feeling comes together on the page. I've always had this and I've always written, but the course has directed me to actually persevere and I can now write stories, proper stories with real people in them, with a beginning and a middle and an end. They also aren't all heartbreaking, some of them are actually quite hopeful and dare I say redemptive.
If I am brave enough I will post one soon.
Friday, 17 October 2014
Tuesday, 23 September 2014
'Autumn leaves are brown and gold, brown and gold, brown and gold. Autumn leaves are brown and gold- in my garden'.
I have been feeling like there is a little bit of Autumn in my heart. I've avoided age and mortality for years now but all of a sudden, a single significant birthday and it's here, right inside me those brown and gold colours. I'm all of a sudden tired, everyone is always younger than me, wrinkles, becoming invisible. I could go on in the same self obsessed lamenting for hours if you would let me. But... Today in the woods, where I always seem to get an epiphany of sorts, it just clicked. I can't be me without the years. I can't be a wife, a mother to my flame haired rascals, a writer, a person trying hard to discover grace and compassion wherever she goes- I can't be that person without having lived what I have lived. It is a truth so simple and searing that I missed it entirely. I've been a 'someone' to people I have loved and still love. I've written off bad decisions (and bad men) with 'rather it happened that it didn't', I've hurt some people terribly but I have survived it all and I am sure I have always been forgiven. If not in the hearts of everyone I've touched, I know in the heart that ultimately matters.
I'm still sad to see time spinning by and I'm always willing it to slow for one more 'squeeze cuddle', one more sticky little hand in mine. I'm still buying eye cream for the first time and I'm still lowering the length of my skirts. But there has been so much up until now, and God willing there will be so much more to come.
Sunday, 7 September 2014
'When the fireweed turns to cotton summertime is forgotten'.
It's a Canadian saying but I think it works the same here. And despite my best efforts I can see Autumn will be showing itself to me in full force, that I can't ignore, in the next few weeks.
Fireweed is my favourite. It's royal purple blooms tower above me in the summer weeks. The best is yet to come when the cotton appears though- the children grab handfuls and it flys around their fiery red hair like snow flakes in the orange late evening light. We come home with a white downy covering, all the way home sowing the seeds for next summers purple beauties.
Tuesday, 2 September 2014
I was tired on Monday night but I had promised the boy and the dog an evening walk. I had a busy weekend and Mondays are always testing. I just struggled half way round the woods, I was grumpy and really, really wanted to sit down- just for a few minutes. But as I kept going I started to get my stride. Do you know that feeling? When a second wind takes over and your body just moves itself, at a faster pace and you feel ever so slightly revived. My son took my hand we went down his 'secret path' and I really saw the woods again. And in seeing I definitely think the change of seasons is underway. Just look at those snowberries.
Tuesday, 29 July 2014
I could post you a hundred pictures of this beach but I still don't think I could convey to you without my words what it means to me. To us I should really say - my husband's family holidayed here. A much regretted sale of a house decades ago never forgotten. That familiar feeling, a slight rush of happiness when you set a foot in sand, when you remember times past and look forward to future family times; a special place.
I am not sure much can compare to bringing your coffee cup out of the house to the beach, sat on your deck chair watching the kids build sandcastles for hours and hours. Fishing in rock pools, swimming in shallow waters with pockets of warmth, moving back to the sea wall as the tide returns in.It always returns in.