There is something about the quiet of a library.
It is a quiet filled with possibilities, with stories, with learning.
Neat rows of books on the shelves, categorized and alphabetized and numbered. Order in a chaotic world.
I stopped at the secondhand store to pick up materials for my mixed media project.
There is something nostalgic and charming about old books. I spend most of my time picking up hardcover books, opening the flaps, and looking for interesting covers.
I was not disappointed. The colours and patterns were artfully aged. The pages were wonderfully discoloured.
I love new books with their crisp covers and never-opened pages, the promise of another world. But I ❤ old books, too, with their untold stories and their vintage character like a tattered and loved teddy bear.
In the corner of our bedroom, my little dragonfly Tiffany lamp casts an amber glow.
In this corner is a table my husband and I searched all over town for. (Which happens to be from a furniture store that sadly just burned down a couple of days ago.) A painting of enormous poppies that has followed us to three houses rests on the wall above. Books I am reading and have yet to read hold their spot in this corner.
It is my cozy corner, my end of the day relaxation corner. It is my snuggle under the covers with a good book corner.
This little corner is my little piece of quiet.
Flowers are expected to be colourful, whether their petals are saturated or quiet.
A gray flower is unexpected.
I took a walk down to the river with my camera.
At first, I saw only the river.
But slowly, I began to notice the smaller details: The leaves floating in the river, the smell of the damp earth, the sound of the birds.
With the help of my camera, I could change my focus as well. The grasses at the river’s edge became a work of art when the leaves and water behind them blurred through my lens.
Before heading back up to the camp, I captured a few images.
I just snapped this photo for this week’s photo challenge…
Every morning, before the kids are up, I sit at my computer with my coffee. It is my quiet way to start the day. I check the weather, my emails, and yes, Facebook. It is also when I write my blog, and work on other writing.
It took me a long time to get started.
I’d been meaning to begin walking for a long time (a really long time!). But there was always an excuse: too hot, too cold, too rainy, too busy… You get the idea.
Until I did.
And now it’s a moment I look forward to each day. A walk in the early afternoon. When I’m feeling ambitious, I even take my dog. Under the hot sun, in the rain, or even when it’s cold, I walk.
A moment of fresh air, exercise, and quiet.
September is here. And with it, new activities, schedules, homework, packing lunches, and hectic mornings. In a small attempt to take the quiet moments of summer with me, I have compiled a list of things I have learned about appreciating the small details. With any luck, I will remember a few in the midst of rushing the kids from one commitment to the next. Here’s what I came up with:
Ten Ways to Enjoy the Little Things
1. Look for small details. There is beauty everywhere. The daisy poking through the sidewalk, the peeling paint on a door, the reflection of light in the teapot.
2. Close your eyes. Listen to every sound.
3. Pick up your pen. Write about everything, including the dust on the bookshelf and the dishes in the sink. There is a story there.
4. Go out with your camera. It helps to focus and be in the moment.
5. Be still. Stop rushing and notice the surroundings.
6. Go for a walk. Breathe deeply. Look and listen.
7. Read poetry. It celebrates the little things.
8. See the world through a child’s eyes. Everything is delightful to a toddler discovering the world.
9. Get up earlier than everyone else in the house. Listen to the quiet. Watch the sun come up. Savour the taste of coffee.
10. Turn off the computer, the tablets, the phones. What have you been missing?
There is a moment when the light is soft and quiet. The sun dips below the trees, taking its shadows with it.
It is my favourite time to explore with my camera.
Potted flowers become abstract art. Lines on leaves become visible patterns. Orange and red berries become brighter and more intense. The world transforms through my lens.
And I cannot capture enough.
A respite from the bugs, a room for conversation, a place for an after-supper cup of tea.
This is my screen house.
We have enjoyed many moments in it. But a spontaneous cuddle with our children at sundown tops them.
The evening breeze, the stars above, and the people I love the most in all the world.
This is happiness.