Sunday, December 13, 2009

Being Merry


Joy to the pond.


I found a string of miniature lights for the pond and wrapped them around a water hibiscus tree hoping to get that “Christmasy” feeling.

Choosing photos for a blog post is a miserable chore when I feel so uninspired. I try to stay away from blogs I admire because they remind me of what I’m missing. Preferring to ignore blogs completely, I still occasionally peek at them from afar, soak them in, and smile.

Christmas spirit is indescribably good when I feel it naturally. If I don’t feel it, I wonder, do I really need it? No.


I want it. The spirit, then merriment.

I watched National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation three times and saw one half of A Christmas Story, once. A few more of the latter movie should do it. Fa ra ra ra ra.

My camera sits in a corner for most of a month. I had a few brief outings with it.


Being in Maryland for my Dad’s funeral last week was bittersweet. He ordered a beautiful, mid-Atlantic snowfall! I wanted to believe it fell for me... What a gift.


Soon there was calm, and peace.

My camera skills are rusty. I sat here for a long time, late at night, and viewed Mary’s Pictures II – one of several huge folders of photos taken when I was feeling it. Ah, those were the days with the old Kodak hanging around my neck like a pendant.


Then, I felt like photographing a messy, pain in the ass poinsettia – my least favorite tropical flower. Why? I took snapshots of anything and everything,


hunted for Eastern Bluebirds daily, and pished in the back yard.


I miss back yard birds! We don’t hang out together anymore.

It’s been so dark,


and unlike sunny North Carolina.



I found them this morning


because I cared to look.

It was dark and cloudy but I lit up the atmosphere


when I also saw a tiny Ruby-crowned Kinglet in the rain. She eyed me up.

Is the aforementioned spirit knocking on my door?

Why, I feel so tickled!

And then there are those damned, noisy Titmice all over the back yard.


I always mumble around Titmice.
I’ll get you, my pretty…and your Cheeky friend, too.

Ho Ho Ho ;-)


Kim said...

Mary, your photos are always like a feast for the eyes. Such beautiful color and clarity that is breathtaking and I mean that with all seriousness.

Mary, I have found that watching birds is the one thing that always takes me out of dark moods. It can be something as simple as watching one crack open a seed or preen in a branch, it doesn't matter as it reminds me of some of the things in my life I enjoy most which are my feathered friends who are always there for me if I search for them.

Take care.

Mary said...

Kim, thanks so much for your compliment on my photos. I agree with you - There's nothing like a long walk, fresh air, and birds.

Dog_geek said...

Mary, I'm so sorry to hear about the loss of your dad. I had missed your last post, so I'm a bit late offering condolences. I hope that you are able to find more of that Christmas spirit!

KGMom said...

Inspiration is a fickle friend--sometimes here, sometimes not.
I think we all go through these cycles.
HOWEVER--if I had bluebirds aplenty, I think I would be inspires. Nothing like a bluebird butt to cheer one up!

Jayne said...

We are just starting to see our Bluebirds again too Mary. I've missed them. Hang in there my friend. Sending warm hugs your way...

Kathie Brown said...

Mary, welcome back! I love the pond photos, the snow and the calm. I love the pointsettia! I love the bluebirds! Well done and well done! Keep on shooting! It looks like you found your smile out there in the back yard. Do you think one of the birds had it?

Angie said...

Oh Mary, you're BACK!!!! I'm so Glad, girl! I have missed your gorgeous photos, cheeky commentary, hilarious beautiful YOU!!! :) Your photos of those bluebirds have carved HUGE holes of envy in me!!! They are just marvelous!! Hang in there, things will gradually come more naturally. Hugs, dear Mary!

NatureWoman said...

Oh yeah, what a cool gift from your Dad, Mary. Those birds just suck you in! I always love your photos, Mary.

Beth said...

Missed you, friend. Thanks for the wonderful photos. Love the expression on the kinglet.


Sandpiper (Lin) said...

Dear Mary, I'm so sorry about your dad. You wrote such a lovely tribute. I know he's smiling and very proud of you. This most recent post shows that you still have the magic in your writing that I enjoy so much. You might feel uninspired, but you inspire me. Keep your chin up, gal. You're doing just fine. Big hugs, Lin

A New England Life said...

Your spirit seems a bit broken this Christmas Mary. I'm sorry for the loss of your dad but glad you had a bit of snow to rejoice in, if only for a moment. Hopefully something good came out of your trip back to Maryland.

I agree with Kim, watching the birds is very relaxing. I also find photography to bring me up as well. Sometimes life can get the best of you though and you just need to ride it until it's over. Holidays can exacerbate our fowl moods. Joy can seem over rated.

Sending you a big hug Mary because you need it.


jemkagily said...

Mary, I am so glad to see that I am not the only one who finds gifts in nature from a departed beloved family member. I truly believe that certain sights were sent to us to cheer our hearts from someone who loves us still...that snowfall was a beautiful one. (I usually get one on my birthday--I've seen my rosebush bloom in November, and this year I got a perfect spider's web dripping with raindrops.) I've missed you here, I'm glad you're back.
If you are using holiday movies as therapy, you can't beat Love Actually. Get the girls up on the sofa with you, and a box of tissues, and you'll be soggy but filled with holiday spirit. I guarantee it.

jason said...

What a spirit filled post, Mary! Delightful. And though you might think your skills are rusty, no one would believe that looking at these photos. It's like one big dose of holiday merriment. Your words complete the package with heartfelt and ticklish wrapping paper. Thank you!

Susan Ellis said...

The comments say it all really - becuase you have such a nice spirit you draw others to you,including bluebirds it seems...mourning is such a personal process, but I agree with others that being outdoors is pure tonic. I use it often...and one of my very first blogs was about my Mom, the Red Breasted Nuthatch ...she pretty much flew into the car when I was visiting her grave with her oldest was funny, and perfect, and I believe, true.
Be well.

Anonymous said...

Ah, a bluebird fix!

Thanks! I needed that.

dguzman said...

Oh Mary... I can't wait to meet you in person; I feel like I know your spirit already from your great posts and pics.

Have a great holiday!

Robin's Nesting Place said...

I'm catching up on your recent posts, Mary. We've had the H1N1 here and company for the last 10 days, so internet time has been rare.

I love the picture of the pond! The colors are absolutely wonderful.

You'll get back in the groove before too long, Mary. Allow yourself time to grieve and be in a funk, if that's what you need. Take care my friend.

Julie Zickefoose said...

That's the best ruby-crowned kinglet photo ever ever ever. Wish I'd taken it. And the bluebirds in situ--perfection. Today
there were two deer feeding in the snow below the kitchen window and I remarked, "Time was I'd have grabbed the camera." Ah well. To everything there is a season.
It's the shortest day of the year. Time to hibernate. The world will wait.

RuthieJ said...

Oh I love your bluebirds! It would be such a pleasure to see them year-round. Your photos are always a treat Mare! (even that poinsettia)