Wednesday, January 22, 2014

January Musings and a Country Drive

It has been still since our orb stealing storm, 

with fog and mist and secret silence that settles into the earth at night,

allowing us a clear vision of The Big and Little Dipper 

as they arc through the skies on their heavenly path.

The sun rises in brief glory as the mist lies low in the valleys, 

still heavy with cold night air. 

But as the forces of nature vie for the skies, 

the heat of the rising sun causes the mist to rise,

And leaves the clouds crying. 

In moments, the view is diffused -

Until mist wins out. 

But it is a temporary victory, on occasion. 

So on a beautiful, Sunny day I took a drive to the market. 

Come along with me and we will enjoy a country drive on a Northwest January day. 

Along our mountain road this fuzzy fellow basks in the rare January sun. 

Even my stopping to take a photo, did not disturb him from his happy nap. 

Further along we see another fellow that has been taking a very long nap, indeed. 

If only they could talk. 

What tales would they tell? 

As we wind our way down to the plateau valley, we find clear blue skies over tawny fields. 

Can you see the silo peeking through the trees? 

It is late morning, but the January sun leaves long shadows. 

Still, the sunshine feels warm through the glass. 

An in-congruent sight in the rural countryside; 

this defunct crane retires in a field. 

As we look behind us,
 Mt. Rainier rises from the valley floor, 
dwarfing the high Cascade mountain range. 

We leave behind the fields and farms,
 and pass through thick forest
 as we enter the little town for a day of marketing. 

Oh, I do love this day of browsing thrift shops, craft shops and the weekly supply of groceries. 

I take my time and little by little the list gets crossed off. 

And if I am lucky, I find some treasures. (I will leave that for a future post)

The sun is low as we make our way home,

casting long shadows between golden rays of light. 

A vintage pump house survives another winter
bringing to mind the swiftness of time. 

The barest hint of color lights up the sleeping trees - 
a promise of Spring. 

With that faith we soldier on, 
braving the cold, and the forces of nature. 

Because even with Winter clutching us in its icy grip, 
that promise is always there. 

I want to thank each and every one of you 
for your very kind and thoughtful comments on my last post. 

I was touched by your stories of your own amazing Mother's and Grandmother's, 

and how through their simple acts of courage and resilience, 

they carried on through adversity and heartache 

to set an example for generations to come. 

I started this blog as a tribute to all those who devote their lives to the simple, 
but very complicated role of keeping home and family -
 those who came before us and those who carry on. 

It is most times an unrecognized and under appreciated virtue. 

But it is an art. 

To take virtually nothing but a promise and a loving idea, and turn it into a home and family, 
despite all that this world throws up as obstacles, 
is nothing short of miraculous. 

I can see by your stories that I am not alone in this thinking. 

Thank you, Dear Friends for sharing and celebrating these humble acts by these remarkable women who came before us. 

We owe it to them to continue the story.....



  1. Haven't our Northwest sunrises been beautiful this week? You and I seem to have been of similar temperament this week, with our rides through lovely winter landscape. Your photos are beautiful and the narrative is the perfect accompaniment - or perhaps it's the other way around!

  2. Hi Karen,
    What stunning photos and thoughts of your day... I was just noticing the same hints of color on the trees on a little drive yesterday... Winter seems to be fading / but, I am sure she will get the last laugh :-)

  3. How fortunate that a ride to the market leads to such a beautiful photo op. Sunrise out of your windows is spectacular. I love seeing Rainier it reminds me of how we used to gauge our days by it when I lived there. I love the mountains but not quite enough to move away from my sea.

  4. Those are some amazing pre-sunrise pictures and I absolutely love that picture of the church with the scenic backdrop.

  5. Beautiful shots, and I loved riding along with you on your market day! What fun, and what stunning scenery. The area you live in is so amazing, and I am looking forward to my trip up to your area in the early spring. Can hardly wait for it to come.

  6. What a beautiful part of the country you live in! I can remember the first time I saw snow topped mountains and the awe I felt:)
    Can you really see some green in those trees? I really need some spring right now!

  7. just beautiful views and lovely skies. thank you for sharing.

  8. Stunning views & a wonderful post as always...I enjoyed our ride to market... simply Beautiful... Hugs May x x x

  9. Que maravilla de montaña Beatrice ,, es un espectáculo ver eso al amanecer !,, gracias por compartir tan bellas imágenes

  10. Wonderful post and stunning photos! Thanks for taking us along.
    I guess I missed your last post so went back and read it. Sorry that the gazing ball was broken. It brought back some lovely memories of your mother. Thanks for sharing that with us. You have such a beautiful way of writing.

  11. I get the same opportunity to see the stars clear with out city lights -- it's a wonderful sight - number 2 photo is stunning - LOVE those colors you were able to capture.. Won't that old truck be a cool back drop for a photo shoot..wink! I am in love with your area...beautiful in all seasons.

  12. Such lovely shots! The colors in the sky are breathtaking and it's such a treat to get shots with Mt. Rainier in the background. So picturesque!

  13. Yes you are so make a home and a family is one of the greatest and beautiful gifts there is and it is an art. Your drive into town with the old truck and glowing skies is just something out of one of my art history books....endless inspiration for the eye. A very blessed weekend to you friend! And again those pink! It is just the most amazing sight! All the best friend! Nicole xoxo

  14. Just beautiful. Thanks again for taking us along. I particularly liked the photo that shows the "sleeping trees" starting very faintly to come back to life. The first time I ever noticed the tinge of sap rising in a group of deciduous trees was when taking a train through Vermont one late winter.

  15. Your posts are always so captivating and to have the mountain as a visual treat each post, it's always a delight to visit you xx

  16. Dearest Karen,
    Lovely photos and writing... Just got back home from solo driving (with Pieter in the passenger seat) back and forth to Atlanta. That is some 300 miles and it does tire you, especially when the last half hour is done in the dark. Enjoying a hot cup of peppermint tea (no cafeine that would affect my sleep) with two Snow Flake Rolls with a wedge of Laughing Cow Light Creamy Swiss... Feels good!
    Your view is always breathtaking when you go down to the valley!
    Hope you scored... we wait and see.

  17. It's alomst 2 weeks and I dont see the sunlight. it keep raining, but two days ago I saw it and it's beautiful morning.
    I love the pictures around your house as always and i love when the sunlight gave a touch and brought beautiful colors.
    I was thinking of you and hope your doing good.

  18. That was a lovely winter drive. Your sunset photos are spectacular. It was a beautiful week in the northwest!

  19. Love your photo, "Mt Rainier fises from the valley floor!"


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

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