Finding hope in the cycles of life

Two small crocus flowers in the debris against a wall

Each year, I experience a thrill at the emergence of the crocus. Their appearance heralds the approach of spring and new life. Yet these first buds in the valley are tiny, and I wouldn’t have noticed them if Steve had not discovered them first. Aren’t they beautifully formed, exquisite in detail and such a gorgeous … Read more

Wild hope and new life

Close up of frog spawn and a waterlily leaf

The first sighting of frog spawn in the pond says it all. Spring is on its way. These early embryos may not all survive the remaining blasts of winter. But some will. And the next will fare better. This is wild hope in action. And the lessons are free. Pause. See differently. Re-story 🌿 This … Read more

Noticing the little shifts in colour

Lichen on wooden rail - older grey and newer green

It was the slight shift in tone that caught my eye. Lichens on the wooden handrails of the footbridge are not new. Their graceful presence is here year-round. But the transition toward green from grey whispers that new life is on its way. Pause. See differently. Re-story 🌿

Speaking of frost…

Frost covered grasses

Some days, something catches my eye and takes my breath away. Like yesterday, when the sub-zero temperature combined with a shaft of sunlight penetrating the mist hovering over the lake. That was amazing by itself. And then I saw the delicate dusting of frost on the tender mosses and grass. And I was smitten. This … Read more

The quiet stirrings of new life

Fallen leaves

Walking around the valley in a dismal late afternoon when all the colours are shades of brown, I notice how the fallen leaves are subtly changing colour and texture. Becoming ready for their contribution to life cycles we do not see. QUIET LIFE Below the surfacenew life is growing,it will emergewhen it’s ready. + Sue … Read more

Seeds of life, not perfection

Out of focus leaf bud against background tangle of bare honeysuckle creepers with small leaf buds

The exact time of sunset in a rain and wind-filled valley is a bit soggy. And I have no idea where the sun even is in the late afternoon gathering gloom. Yet the vibrant emerging leaf buds of wild honeysuckle are stunningly framed against the smooth, dark twists of its creeping tendrils.  But capturing their … Read more

A gift for today – Boxing Day

Small black box with a gold leaf on top

On 26th December, Boxing Day is celebrated across the UK, except in Scotland, where New Year or Hogmanay is a much bigger event. The name traces back to the custom of giving gifts to people in need, though today, it is often dominated by the start of the Winter Sales… My Christmas present this year … Read more

Walking in step with valley time

Early winters evening across the lake to the stables

Time is different here in this place. And I suspect it is where you are, too. Yet we tend to assume time is ours to use – like a resource – when we don’t own the clock. VALLEY TIME Dark comes earlyand with it, rain.Remindersthat valley timeis different. We do not seewith eyes alone,nor navigatewith … Read more

We don’t always see it…

View across still water in the valley in Winter

Standing at the bottom end of the lake yesterday morning, all was still. And you wouldn’t even begin to know what life was there… But I knew, at least in part. On my way down from feeding the boys, I’d watched the swan doing her inverted dibbling. A brilliant white iceberg, the triangle of the … Read more

Choosing something beautiful

Fading pink hydrangea, including skeleton petals

Yesterday, while pondering the choices we make, this extraordinary contemplative poem dropped into my inbox from Steve Garnaas-Holmes. FATE Sometimes it seems life knows what it’s doingand then suddenly forgets, or maybe gets distracted.You’re just going along, we say, and then suddenlyeverything changes in an eyeblink. A kid is born. Tires screeching on pavement, a … Read more