Mindfulness Challenge Week 26: Stillness

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Life is never truly still.

Slight movements surround us, always.  There are interruptions to our meditations, sounds and distractions.  Breath means movement.

While practicing using my neutral density filter, I left my camera focused on the pool for a few minutes to go help my son clean the car.  I had just tripped the shutter on a 30-second exposure when he called for me.

My daughter, thinking she’d be funny, attempted to capture a selfie on my camera while I was gone.

The stillness of the shot captured her movement in front of the camera, a faint purple haze in front of the pool.

When I was choosing a photo for this entry, my initial thought was to use this first image, as I felt it showed stillness well:

pool 2 w

However, it occurred to me that the challenge of being still is to accept the constant movement surrounding us.  Instead of ruining the image, my daughter inadvertently created a metaphor.

Nothing – not even stillness – is perfect.  I wouldn’t have it any other way.

#createmindfulness2017

Two Pink Doors

two pink doors w

Two pink doors, side by side, simply begged to be photographed.

For starters, I have always been drawn to the colour pink.  Pink in any shade appeals to me:  coral, champagne, or watermelon.  So when I spotted these doors, the only logical thing to do was to make a picture.

They are almost perfect symmetry, twin doors separated by stripes of white and blue with identical silver knobs.  Salt air and rain have aged them separately, however.  It seems one has been more affected than the other.

Soon, these doors will open to ice cream and summer breezes.  Sand will be tracked over their thresholds.  They will be witness to sandcastles and sunburns.

I can’t wait.

Hope Springs

ice

It seems counterintuitive to think of ice as a sign that winter is coming to an end.  But these odd formations have appeared in my backyard, below the eaves of my house.  They are the result of snow melting from the roof.  Although it is still cold enough that it freezes, this gives me some hope that winter is near its end.

There are many ways to enjoy winter in Northern New Brunswick:  skiing, snowshoeing, skidooing, skating, and sledding.  By the time spring officially arrives, however, I am ready for its end.  I crave flip flops and walks on the beach, campfires and balmy summer nights.  I am done with all the whiteness and not being able to see around corners when I back out of my driveway.

We are not done with winter weather yet, but at least there are signs that it is beginning to end.

Sea Glass Season

If you’ve been following my posts, you know that I have been waiting (impatiently) for the snow to melt.  I have been itching to go to the beach, but until this week there was so much ice and snow that it wouldn’t have been safe, let alone enjoyable.

The snow is not completely gone, but the beach is finally accessible.

I took a drive to my favourite spot for collecting sea glass, and spent more than two hours wandering the shoreline.

It was bliss.

I was the only person on the beach, with the salt breeze and the rushing water as company.  The tide was out and the sea glass was plentiful.

The only difficulty was leaving.

sea-glass-2015

www.dawnblanchardphotography.com

Sea Urchins

Probably because of the storm we had a few weeks ago, the shore is littered with sea urchin shells in a way that it never was last year. (As well as mounds of seaweed and driftwood.)

This makes walking barefoot on the beach a treacherous task, but it also makes for amazing beach finds.

My daughter gathered a bucket of these delicate shells, collecting them like little treasures; my son and I made shapes with them on the beach and I photographed them.

It is wonderful what we can find on the shore.

urchins1

urchins2

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Glass from the Sea

sea-glass

We took a day trip to a nearby beach, one I had not been to before.

We soaked up the hot sun, waded out past the sandbars, and wandered along the rocky shoreline. It was a perfect summer afternoon.

And I brought home the most amazing amount of sea glass I have ever collected in one afternoon.

Finding Photos

starfish

I have thousands of photos on my computer. And I keep adding to them.

So, occasionally, I forget about one I’ve taken. While deleting some old ones that have no sentimental or aesthetic value, I came across this one.

And in this middle of another long Canadian winter, it brings summer back to me for a moment.