I was challenged by a Facebook friend to do one nature photo a day for 7 days last week. I thought I’d share with you the photos I chose and description with them. Just for fun.
Day 1: I took this photo of the sunrise from the rear window of my Honda Civic while leaving Albuquerque heading west to California when I moved there in 2003. It was the most beautiful sunrise I think I’ve ever seen. Best of all, when I look at this I think of my Daddy and our three and half days of journeying together in the small confines of that Honda. While I’ve already forgotten the content of our conversations, volumes were spoken to my heart in the quietness of those long hours that will last a lifetime. His love, support, and dedication to his family were like the sunrise; never failing.
Day 2 Nature Photo: I’m not much of a bird person, but a slice of my heart belongs at the beach. The sticky air, the salty smell, the constant whooshing sound of the waves, the joyful echo of squealing children, the warmth of the sun, the treasures washed ashore,all of it. There are few places that inspire self-reflection than next to the sea.
But then, look at this girl. The sass and strength in her eye. The one leg slightly lifted. On alert. Anxious. Yet, daring to run head on towards the crashing surf, knowing she has the speed and agility to escape it. Have you ever caught a sandpiper?
Day 3 Nature Photos: In the fall of 2014 we went to the Black Hills (South Dakota). We spent the better part of a day in Custer State Park on Needles Highway. The one lane tunnels high on the cliffs were almost too much for me to bear. When I began to pray “Dear God, Make me a bird, so I can fly; fly far, far away from here.” I knew my anxiety was getting the best of me.
But with the support of my sarcastic, intentionally-says-all-the-wrong-things husband, I stuck with i…t and we made it to the Sylvan Lake area. There is a trail around the lake that goes over and around and THROUGH huge boulders, often without a view of what’s on the other side. That particular day the air was crisp and clear, the sun was warm, and the sights were breathtaking. We watched men and eagles fishing, the boys roamed freely and climbed all the rocks, and we collected a pinecone that sits on our table to this day. This part of our trip became the favorite for all four of us, especially Hubs as seen here walking through AND under boulders on the trail.
Day 4 Nature Photo:
In searching for past nature photos, I came across an album of pictures I took in the garden at the old house. I’ve been thinking about landscaping at the new house lately and seeing these photos made me miss our beautiful flower garden. I’m not much of a gardener, but I managed to maintain and even add to the garden we inherited at the old house. It was so full of life.
Day 5 Nature Photos:
Campfires and s’mores and being outdoors
Skipping rocks by the shore as the sun sinks lower
Summers are made for this.
Day 6 Nature Photo: This picture was taken on my mom’s back deck (former back deck – she just moved). I’ve taken lots of pictures of her gardens over the last ten years but this one sticks out in my mind. I watched this lizard and another for a long time one hot afternoon a few years ago. I watched the other one eat it’s own skin as it shed. And then I watched this one do this…whatever this is. I assumed this was a male and he was either showing off for the other lizard, or was warning me to back off. Either way, it was cool to watch him flare this thing out of his neck.
The Midwest doesn’t hold a candle to the South when it comes to things that crawl. Most of the time, I am grateful for that. But there is something romantic about the untamed beauty of the South. The sounds of nature are as thick as the humidity; the chirping and croaking and buzzing. Owls and whippoorwills, crickets and cicadas, birds and frogs, they are unforgiving in their noise. The air is simultaneously sticky and dusty. Cobwebs are everywhere and insects have no bounds. The lines between man and nature are heavily blurred. The kudzu snuggles up to the roadside and creeps up telephone poles and abandoned homes. Garden snakes sunbathe lazily in manicured lawns. If it’s all you’ve ever known you may take no notice of a lizard on the spindle of a porch railing. But when you go away and come back you realize that this is truly where the wild things are.
Day 7-?? Nature Photos: I couldn’t pick one more. I just couldn’t. I feel so fortunate to have lived in and traveled to many parts of the country and a few parts of the world. I feel especially grateful that I have a partner who prioritizes giving our children experiences with nature. (Although he’s been harder to convince taking another kind of family trip – to Disney.) We’ve been to Yellowstone, the Black Hills and Badlands, the North Shore, Itasca, and the East Coast with our boys. We’ve been in caves, on mountaintops, by waterfalls, the ocean, lakes, have seen wildlife galore, and learned about things we might not have learned about in books alone. I hope as they grow they continue to have a love for nature that Hubs and I have found. Anyway, I could go on and on, but here are just a few of the nature pictures we’ve experienced as a family. Enjoy!