My holiday cards and 2022 desk calendars are now available for purchase. Each year presents a new challenge in determining which images to use for the cards and calendars. Some photographs I think of as my “favorites” and they certainly rise to the top. Others are “hidden gems” that I have overlooked in previous edits. The images for the holiday cards remind me that our snowy and cold winter is just around the corner, and the images for the spring and summer months of the calendars have me pining for those now-distant sunny and warm days and for the color that has since disappeared from our landscape.
The images here are samples. You can see more details about the cards and calendars by going to the tabs at the top of my website page or to the dropdown menu.
Please contact me with any questions and/or orders.
We’ve recently returned from a three-week road trip to visit family and explore new places. We experienced sun and heat, smoke-filled days and nights, a full moon, and a sky filled with countless stars. We traveled through miles of corn, soybeans, sunflowers, grasslands, badlands, prairies, mountains, and black hills. The diversity and beauty of our country is truly amazing.
On our return to Minnesota we stayed one night at Lake Shetek State Park in the southwestern part of the state. As we explored the park and lake we walked across a causeway connecting the lake shoreline to Loon Island. The causeway was constructed as part of a WPA program. Earlier in the day I had seen a family swimming and relaxing at the end of the causeway. But as I walked again in the calm of late evening my attention was drawn to these rocks that extended from the sandy beach into the lake. Their pattern seemed to be welcoming me back to the land of 10,000 lakes and asking me to come along, follow each one, into the coolness of the lake.
With the heat of summer we often have storms develop in the late afternoon after the high temperatures have built up throughout the day. One early evening I walked south to Como Park but noticed a large and dark cloud to the northwest. It was threatening but there was clearing after it. When I reached the McNeely Conservatory the sun was just sliding below the cloud, it’s rays streaming and illuminating the sky above and the sun itself lit up the dome of the conservatory. It was a beautiful albeit fleeting moment. Sometimes we are put in just the right spot to see and appreciate the beauty around us, if we will only look for it and take it all in.
It’s been peak bloom for peonies this past week. With our hot temperatures and gusty winds I can walk outside and immediately smell the scent of peonies in the air. It’s a short-lived bloom season, and perhaps that’s one of the reasons I savor every day. We’ve added additional peony bushes over the years, but I continue to favor the ones that I transplanted from my mother and father’s house in Kansas. These are the ones that were on the side of their house, sometimes neglected, but they continued to blossom. Each year my parents would gather and cut the blooms to take to the cemeteries on Memorial Day and lay on the graves of relatives. Fast forward to now, with both my parents having passed on, I’m filled with wonderful memories and see these Kansas peonies blooming in honor of my mom and dad.
It’s a dark and sad time in Minnesota this week. Tensions have risen, actions have been taken, people have been hurt, and everyone is in a state of shock. Our state is filled with a wonderful diversity of people which adds to the richness of this place. We are proud of our lakes, our rivers, our towns and cities. We take on the challenge of hard winters that linger late into spring, snowfalls that bury is in feet of snow, and subzero temperatures that settle in for weeks. Now we are facing the challenge of grieving losses – loss of life, loss of property, loss of respect. Sadly there are business owners, apartment dwellers, and many people that have had their places burned and have been displaced through no fault of their own. The losses are many and spread throughout our cities. We are mourning and many of us are saddened that our state has been rocked by the extent and severity of this week’s events, and it will take time for us to mend.
Change is inevitable in life. We will grieve and struggle, and we will get through this, and I sincerely hope that this week’s news gets replaced with hope and understanding, love and respect.