Well, here we find ourselves in December, a month with 31 days that feels more like 15. As a terminal procrastinator, I struggle with all of the preparations and hecticness that is the Christmas Season. Kind of a contradictory statement in a blog post about serenity. These images were all the result of literally slowing down. Physically stopping the car to enjoy the beauty around me. The first photograph was made while I was out delivering gift baskets for my husband, John, to his clients. Many of them live in rural Ottawa and my route that day kept me on the road for four and a half hours, time I was resenting spending behind the wheel knowing what needed to be done at home (a puppy to walk, groceries to buy, gifts to wrap, decorations to put out…). As I was leaving one of my stops, I knew I had to pull over and capture the lines of the long country road. I live on a busy street in the city and this is about as opposite a place to live than my home. The clouds had lifted a bit and the blue sky was peaking through. The long straight lines of the road, receding into the distance in a hypnotic, calming manner.
The other three images were taken going to (image two) and leaving the cottage this past weekend (images three and four). To be perfectly honest, it really is difficult to not feel serene at the lake, but we (and by we, I mean the guy behind the wheel) are usually in a hurry either coming or going that I am whizzing past the gorgeous scenery that I am mentally photographing in my mind or trying to capture through a dirty truck window. On both days, Friday and Sunday, the sky was glowing behind a haze. I had the door practically open before we had come to a complete stop and I was able to take in the last light of the day against the fresh snow. The last two were taken about 100 meters from each other (I think, I’m terrible at estimating distances). What a different location makes. The snow blew off the hood of the truck and onto the windshield and with the light shining through the trees and onto the snow, it painted the most beautiful winter abstract that begged to captured.
The last image is a final reminder to me of the peaceful calm that I feel at the lake. As I head into the week leading to Christmas, with all of the rushing around and last minute preparations, I know full well that I will stress myself out, I have that final picture as a reminder of the bigger picture, that we shouldn’t sweat the small stuff. The things that matter cannot be bought and wrapped up to open on Christmas morning. Despite the pressure that we put on ourselves this time of year, and quite frankly throughout the year, we have to take the time to slow down, whether it’s for a couple of minutes or a couple of hours.
The Serenity Blog Circle is a collaborative photography project in which we want to share images that convey peace and calm. Please follow the link to my very talented friend, Kathy Roberts. Thanks so much for looking and all of the best to you and your families for a Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy New Year. xo