Geese, the Pond, and Friends

Sometimes winter just isn’t all that pretty.  Like today.

I was determined to get outdoors and find something to photograph.  It’s been a long time since I have done this, and nothing was going to stop me.

On a small pond, in a little park close to home, some geese were just hanging out on the ice. As I walked closer to them, they all carefully waddled toward the other side of the pond. I was using a wide angle lens, which meant I could not zoom in, so this image is cropped a bit.  

A gray winter day. Geese on a frozen pond.  

Ever since I snapped this photo I have been thinking of that story from the movie “Fried Green Tomatoes”. Idgie tells how some ducks landed on a lake, the water froze quickly, and then the ducks just flew away with the frozen pieces of that pond. Last they heard it was somewhere over Georgia.

That is one of the best stories from my favorite movie.  It is such a powerful tale about friendship.  A good mix of humor, joy, sorrow, laughter, mistakes, and forgiveness.  Oh, and fried green tomatoes, of course.

* * *

Friends are a priceless gift. 

Sometimes, when you least expect it, a friend checks in on you, says just the right words that you need to hear in that moment, and you know you have been touched by grace.

Then, even if the day is damp and gray and cloudy and cold, even if you know you want to write something and can’t hear the words, even if you aren’t fond of the photo you post, it’s all good.  Because you know deep inside you that what really matters are those friendships.

Winter Textures

Snow texture
The weather in every season impacts us in so many ways.  We often say we have had too much of this or that, as in snow and cold and ice.  When we’re in the middle of that weather fatigue it can be very difficult to see any beauty about it.
Some days, though, we can, if we take the time to look.  The texture of the snow in the afternoon sun is what we found last weekend.
Tree roots in snow
The contrasts in light and shadow here on the base of this tree mesmerized me.  Not just the snow texture, but also the bark, the skin of that tree in all it’s variations of gray and brown.
Red barn in winter
Not all barns are red anymore.  The color in contrast with the winter surroundings just made this scene pop for me.  And I want to walk up to it and touch that wood, feel the roughness on my hand… and take a look inside, maybe climb that ladder.  
                                                                                                         Care to join me?

Exploring on a Winter Day

A typical Saturday morning at the Tisch house usually begins with one of those conversations that go like this: 

“What would you like to do today?”
“Oh, I don’t know. You?”
“I don’t know.  Anyplace you want to go?”
“Don’t know.  Let me think about it.”
Repeat this a few times, and then finally someone will suggest a place to go, or something around the house to work on together.  

Today it was so lovely outside, in spite of the snow that arrived during the night.  The temperature was getting above freezing.   We were itchin’ to get out and take a drive. 

A few miles from us is a covered bridge, and that is where we chose to go.

Union Bridge near Madison, MO

Union Bridge, near Paris, Missouri, was built in 1871. You can read a bit about it here.  It is in need of some repair, but walking through it you can still get a sense of the craftsmanship that went into making it.

Union Bridge close up

I was fascinated by the stonework that forms the road leading up to it.  

post and beam construction

Mark appreciated the post and beam construction, and the wooden pegs holding it together.

original floor of bridge

Walking through it on these boards gave me a sense of history, making me wonder how many people used this in times past.

inside the bridge

An amazing structure.  Mark read that it was made so that a hay wagon could get through.

View from the bridge

It was picture perfect. Peaceful, just warm enough, and the sound of the water flowing over the rocks in the creek made it so calming.  Mark is standing (lower left) on a concrete roadway that can be driven over when the water is not too deep.

Winter spectacular

A destination + my camera + my best friend = a perfect winter day exploration.

Splashing in the Mud on a Winter Day

A winter day, a sunny afternoon, snow melting, and a park to explore.
A daughter, a grandson, and me with my camera.
The perfect combination.
The giggles, the hiding, the “hey, Mom!”, the simple pleasure of just being a boy.
My grandpa used to tell me that his light meter 
(which was separate from the camera) 
would let him know if I needed to wash my face. 
I held my camera close to my grandson’s face 
and told him that the camera could tell me 
if his face was dirty.  
I think he believed me….
Splashing in the mud on a winter day.
With grandma and her dirty-face-detecting-camera at the ready.
This is that part where I swoon….