Photography · Writing

Gratitude – Thankful to Experience All Four Seasons

When looking outside and seeing all the snow and knowing the temperature is not above freezing, it is a bit difficult to be thankful for Winter, however it is a season with a purpose. Some days I just need to be reminded of that. 🙂 I am grateful for Winter, Spring, Summer and Autumn. All four seasons have their own special beauty and a unique reminder of the beauty that is truly within nature.

SPRING – trees and flowers begin to bud and bloom. A time of rejuvenation.

SUMMER – Various shades of green and a beautiful warming sun. A time to enjoy all that life has to offer.

AUTUMN – Natures colors at their best! Cooling temperatures and thoughts s’mores. 🙂

WINTER – Colder temperatures, warm sweaters. Knowing the gift of each day, even if the stormy cold doesn’t always feel like a gift. 🙂

Gratitude – being thankful and showing appreciation…

Thank you for stopping and taking a look! I hope your day finds you happy and feeling blessed.

All photos are originals by Kim Lawless

Photography · Writing

Back Yard Photographer – Into the Forest

A path in the woods

The quote by John Muir – “And into the forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul.” is a quote that truly resonates with me. I tend to grab my camera and venture off to see what nature has to offer me on that day. Sometimes I go to nearby state parks, or just neighborhood walking trails. I hear and see the birds, I watch the butterflies and bees, I stare at the beauty of the lakes, wooded areas and the sky. I lose myself in the beauty of the sights, sounds and smells. My husband knows that when I grab my camera and say I am going to go take a few pictures, he won’t see me for a few hours (some times longer).

I had often hear the above quote, but didn’t know the author until a fellow blogger had noted the quote and John Muir as the author. Since I found out who the author was (Thank you Rupali!), I had to find out more. I went to Google and then Wikipedia. John Muir was a Scottish-American naturalist and an early champion for preserving the wilderness in the United States. He was also an author, environmentalist and conservationist. John is also known as the “Father of National Parks”.

In nature, stress doesn’t exist, the crazy sometimes tiring world doesn’t exist nor does the negativity of words and actions – there is peace. Peace that is calming and quiet, and also rejuvenates, provides hope and inspires. Nature is peace.

Below are a few more photos I took on one of my trips to refresh my soul.

Close up of Suspension Bridge
Colorful Tree Fungus
Color in the woods

Thank you for stopping by and checking out my blog! Hope you enjoyed the photos.

All photos are originals by Kim Lawless

Photography · Writing

Back Yard Photographer – Winter Colors

January can be a tough month. It is post holiday festivities and the colorfulness of the celebrations and mid winter when nature’s colors seem to be much more dull. Yes, it seems to be a time when moods match the outside – or at least that is how it goes for me.

The morning after a small ice storm, I decided I needed to get out of the house. My gray mood and the gray skies were getting to be a bit much. I grabbed my camera and headed to the walking trail near my house. I do like how the ice glistens on the trees. But it also does something else – it highlights the colors still remaining within those trees. Yes – COLOR!!

I had been focused so much on the dark and gray of winter, that I had chosen not to see the color that remains. But on this day, as nature seems to do for me, I was reminded that there is beauty everywhere. I just had to open my eyes to it.

Below are a few examples of the colors I captured that day. I’m glad I was able to get outside, so I could be reminded of the colors even in winter.

Hope you enjoy the pictures! What is your favorite winter activity? What is the weather like where you are from? Please feel free to comment. 🙂

Thank you for stopping by and checking out my blog!

All photos are originals by Kim Stites.

Photography · Writing

Back Yard Photographer – Geese Migrating

Since the weather has been pretty mild these last few weeks, I have gotten the opportunity to go visit one of my favorite walking trails. This time, I enjoyed watching the geese that were stopping at the lake before they continue on their migration path. It was nice spending some time outside, listening to and watching the geese. Here are a few photos of the geese.

Hope you like the photos! Do you have one that you prefer to the others? If so, which one?

Thank you for stopping by and checking out my blog!

All photos are originals by Kim Stites

Photography · Writing

Back Yard Photographer – Family of Cardinals

Happily a family of cardinals has decided to call the trees behind my house their home. I must admit, I wasn’t sure there was a family until just this past week. Over the Summer I had seen the cardinals but wasn’t sure if I was seeing one multiple times or several different cardinals. Finally this week, I saw several of them together. At one point I saw three by one of the bird feeders, but I wasn’t quick enough to get the shot this time.

A few fun facts from allaboutbirds.org :

  • The Northern Cardinal is the state bird for seven states
  • The oldest recorded Northern Cardinal was a female. She was just about 16 years old.
  • If the male Northern Cardinal sees its reflection in a mirror is can spend hours trying to fight off the intruder. The male fiercely protects it’s breeding territory.

Below are a few pictures of what I am referring to as the siblings. These are young northern cardinals because their beaks are a dark brown. I believe I have seen the mama, but I didn’t get a picture of her this week. I did hear her – she is very vocal. I was able to get a picture or two of the papa. He was a little more difficult as he didn’t stick around long to get his picture taken. 🙂

Mama cardinal blending in with the bird feeder
Sibling cardinals enjoying a snack
Sibling cardinals looking for their snack
Papa cardinal watching over his family

Hope you enjoy the pictures! Thank you for stopping by my blog!

All photos are originals by Kim Stites