“I go to nature to be soothed and healed and to have my senses put in order.”
~ John Burroughs
I don’t ordinarily have a negative reaction to any sort of weather, I pretty much like it all, but the past few days have been unbelievably gloomy, and the other day I found myself feeling a bit low in spirits. Of course it may not have been the weather’s fault, in fact, it probably wasn’t, but I had a more difficult time finding the beauty in it. And my joy.
As I sat there sipping my coffee, feeling low and looking out at the gray gloom, I noticed my tree. I love my tree. It’s a giant sycamore that my Grandpa planted out in front of the house 70+ years ago, and it fills the entire span of all three of my bedroom windows, like an ancient guardian keeping watch over me. It has the strangest branches that spike up at odd points and its bark is forever peeling off, giving it an extra barren look, and I found myself thinking “Even Papa Sycamore looks gloomy today.” But then I began to notice all of the different shades of gray, of not only my tree, but also of all the surrounding trees in the background set against the gray of the sky, and I suddenly thought it looked rather pretty. I don’t usually find gray a “pretty” color, but for some reason all of those various shades of gray looked pretty to me, and it took me a bit by surprise. My mood shifted almost immediately. Interesting how finding the beauty in something can make such a big difference in ones mood.
It made me want to get outside, to be out in nature, to breathe in the cool fresh air, and take in the scents and sights of winter. It’s more difficult for me to spend time out in nature in the winter because I’m allergic to the cold. Like actually legit allergic, not in a joking way. I break out in hives from cold temperatures, and can even have sensitivity to the cold in the freezer section of the grocery store if I linger there for any length of time. It’s not anything real extreme though and it seems to have improved in recent years, but I still take care when it comes to the cold. I also have mild asthma which can sometimes be triggered by the cold. I know, it may seem strange… why the heck do I live in such a cold place when I’m allergic to the cold?!
Haha! I don’t know, maybe because my family is here, my friends, my life. And maybe because even with the cold winter weather, I still find it incredibly beautiful here. I just gotta bundle up real good if I wanna go outside.
It wasn’t ‘face hurting’ cold out there the other day though, so after my daughter and I had finished running a few errands, I told her that I wanted to stop by a local nature preserve before going home and get out to explore for a little bit. So we did just that. As we were out walking, she mentioned that she was just thinking earlier it would be a perfect day for a nature walk. I wouldn’t exactly call it perfect, I’d prefer it a bit warmer with at least a little sunshine, but she hates the sun and loves when the weather is gloomy like this, so it was perfect to her.
Well, regardless of whether or not it was perfect weather, it was wonderful to just be outside enjoying nature, and it was exactly what I needed to lift my spirits. The quote I shared above really expresses it perfectly… “I go to nature to be soothed and healed and to have my senses put in order.” Nature truly soothes my soul. ❤
The preserve we went to was the same place where I snapped this photo of this giant oak tree last autumn when it was in all its autumn splendor. It looks much different on a gloomy day in winter…
But it was still a lovely sight to see. Oh, how I love trees.
And I love the water – the view of the lake there was still lovely too…
Even on a dreary day when it’s all frozen over. And when the lakes here are frozen over, people go out and walk on them – see all the footprints? Well you wouldn’t catch me out there walking on it – our temps haven’t nearly been cold enough this winter to make me feel like it would be safe.
As I was busy snapping the above photo, and pondering the dangers of thin ice, my daughter wandered off on her own. When I caught up to her I found her sitting on a stump along the shore looking out at the lake.
Yes, safely on the shore is more like it. 😉
Although… going ice fishing sounds like fun, we haven’t done that in ages. Maybe during a winter when the ice is thicker. Several feet thicker.
Even though it wasn’t real cold out, eventually winter’s chill seeped in, so we made our way back to the car. On our way back, my daughter looked down and look what she found…
A $5 bill! Nice! Gotta love randomly finding money on the ground, maybe it really does grow on trees. 😀
As we were driving out we saw this metal sculpture…
Another 5… it must be a sign! 😉
[Yeah… a sign that I’m weird]
We also came across this interesting sculpture…
You can’t tell from the photo, but there was an interesting optical illusion thing going on with this. Not sure why it was there, what the story is behind it, or what it has to do with the nature preserve, but it was cool. I like art.
In all, our little outing didn’t last very long, but it was just long enough to get in a good nature fix, it was so refreshing. And beautiful…
Even on a gloomy day
beauty can still be found in shades of gray.
✿~Peace & Love~✿