Friday, November 2, 2012

Louder Than Words

I love waking up before the sun rises.
Those first rays of light warm the cold, damp landscape.
Causing the mist to rise.
Up, up, up it goes.
Did you ever wonder how clouds are formed?
I can map out where the rivers flow by the rising columns of mist.
This time of year, the morning sun is a rare thing. Something to be savored and enjoyed, as it is very fleeting. We are entering our rainy season here in Washington State and sunshine will be an elusive guest.
As it streams through my windows, it lights up my collection of blue glass.
And gives my houseplants some vitamin D. Do plants need vitamin D? I know I do, so I gather as much of it as I can, finding excuses to go outside.
Where Ling Ling is waiting for me.
The cats are lazy this time of year and only go out when the sun makes it's appearance.
But you can see it has rained during the night and the deck is very wet.
As I look out through the screen door, I can see that the fallen leaves need sweeping. The slightest breeze brings them down from the Big Leaf Maple tree that provides us shade in the summer. They spin as they fall, like magical parachutes. The tiny native Douglas Squirrels run the length of the branches to eat the winged seeds and chatter scoldingly at the cats sitting on the rail.
This tree is over 100 ft tall and feeds a lot of squirrels! It's leaves are sometimes a foot across! They are tough and leathery and if I don't rake them off my lawn, they will smother the grass. (I save them for compost)
I have many of these large and wonderful trees in our little forest. Although, this is the only one that grows near my lawn. The rest of the trees drop their leaves and there they stay.
Except on the driveway. This is a big job, one that I have not attempted yet. All the leaves have not fallen, so I will wait.  This takes many trips to remove all the leaves. But I enjoy the fresh air and exercise and the dogs who accompany me everywhere.

Working outside in the golden leaves restores my spirit.
It gives me time to think.
Of all the things that I am grateful for.
I live a rather Thoreau existence.
Busy raising a family, building a home, working, caring for aging parents, I didn't have much time for myself.
And now I am free of those obligations, (done lovingly) but this is sometimes a solitary life.

I am reinventing myself.
It is simply a bend in the road.
My solitary life has led me to writing. To start this blog. To write my newspaper column.
Sometimes I don't speak to a soul all day. It is just me and my animal companions and the wind in the trees.
The sun and the rain and the ancient, silent mountain range.
The forest and wildflowers.
And creatures of the wild.
But these things speak louder than words.
Weekly Top Shot 


  1. Hi Karen,
    Love your pictures of those beautiful trees. I am in the same situation. I have gotten a part time job at a library, but on my days off I am mostly by myself until my husband comes home. But I like the quiet and I craft and garden, etc.
    Have a good weekend!

  2. Oh my gosh these pictures are fabulous!! The first one is mesmerizing!! Love your header!!!

  3. so many beautiful images...being outdoors revives my spirit too!

  4. Beautiful photos, delicious colors. really exquisite light, nice place.

  5. I'm glad you created your blog, Karen! Your life is so much like mine was on the mountain in Oregon. Be sure to take your Vitamin D3! Evidently, there is a lot of Vitamine D3 deficiency there according to my doctor in the PNW. Of course, with 5 months of rain, I can understand that. Glad you have the dogs to keep you company as you're outside.


  6. Dearest Karen,
    Wow, what a nice post but I am most of all in love with your big leaf maple! Incredible and what gorgeous colors. Why don't you try to roll roses:
    I certainly wish I had such a tree...
    Hugs to you,

  7. What a wonderful part of the world you live in and what an amazing view!

    Happy weekend!

    madelief x

  8. Love this post, Karen. All of that time you devoted to your family and your home, and now it's all your own. Reinventing yourself - I find myself in the same position and it's rather daunting. How do you do it so calmly? <3

  9. Thank you for your encouraging comments, I so wish we were all sitting around eating some pumpkin bread with some starbuck's coffee on these cool autumn afternoons!

    Cindy, I think working part time in the library would be heaven! And Stacy Lyn, just put one foot in front of the other and take a deep breath, and Dianne, thank you for the reminder for the vitamin D, yes, so important.Oh, I will try the roses, Mariette, thank you for sharing that!

    Thank you all for stopping by. xx

  10. Hi Karen. I just love your photos of the woods and the steam rising. It looks rather strange....eerie columns almost marking out the territory....i find them very strange and thought provoking!
    I had never thought of them as markers for the rivers.....I realise I have just gone round in a circle but I found it hard to put into words what was going around in my head (friends would probably what's new!)
    I love seeing the autumn colours of your leaves but realise that where there are lovely trees there's are autumn leaves needing to be swept up!
    I better stop before I go on an even longer soliloquy! Joan

  11. Wonderful shots!
    I LOVE your view!
    There is a river behind me and I love it when the foggy mist rises up and filters through the woods in my backyard. :)
    A really lovely closing paragraph!

  12. Wow Karen, your images are so beautiful, and SO NW! I too, love solitude, it refreshes my soul... Thank you for sharing on Weekly Top Shot #55!

  13. wow. that´s some pretty amazing shots. I´ve never seen the mist rise like that. Gorgeous. :)

  14. Oh this is such a relaxing peaceful post and the photos are amazing. B

  15. Fantastic set of pictures! It was a pleasure seeing them.


Thank you for stopping by! Your comments are important to me and are very much appreciated. xx Karen

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