Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Happy New Year

The first day of 2013 was cold, clear, calm and sunny which made it the best of winter days in Canada. The sun is slightly stronger and stays slightly longer each day as we move slowly toward spring. My husband and I walked a few trails this afternoon and I took this picture of our shadows as we looked for birds along the river for the Big January count.

This is a favourite trail close to home. The boardwalk crosses a fast moving creek that once powered a mill just a short distance downstream. Large, expensive homes now surround this small natural area and it is easy to miss the entrance and just as easy to forget the history of the tiny community.

Time marches on. Change is inevitable and happens at a faster pace each year. Change can be good but it is often unsettling and stressful. How easy it is to complain as we get older and the years flow faster into each other. Changing responsibilities, abilities, relationships, communities and economic realities can create resentment and bitterness.

As I follow the path of 2013 a day at a time, I want to do so with joy, optimism, faith and good will. I tire of the cynicism and chronic complaining that is rampant and so contagious in spite of our prosperity and many blessings. I say to myself,
"This is a good year to move away from feelings of self-centred entitlement to an unselfish, forgiving and generous spirit." 
There can be peace and beauty in even the most challenging journey.

If I were to say, ''God, why me?'' about the bad things, then I should have said,
 ''God, why me?'' about the good things that happened in my life.


  1. A wonderful walk and sentiment to start the new year.

  2. Lovely photos--the trail near your house? You are most fortunate.
    And being observant--as you are--allows you to share it with us.
    Thank you.
    I agree on the "it's easy to complain" observation. Yes, change is unsettling. My dad recently observed--he feels as though he is the last leaf on the tree--as more of his contemporaries die. His complaints about the way things are is a comment on his feeling "out of place and time."

    Happy New Year to you all!

  3. Happy New Year Gaelyn and Donna. Yes, these pictures were taken just a 10 minute drive from home. (We don't live in the expensive homes) This was where my husband's ancestors settled in 1799 when they came to Ontario from Pennsylvania. I love walking in the area.
    Best wishes to your dad Donna. I hope he is well. I like his observation about being the last leaf on the tree. He has seen so much change in his lifetime.

  4. Great way to start your new year...wise words! Happy New Year to you and yours...may your new year be filled with love, laughter and good health

  5. Those trails look very interesting.I hope your year ahead will be filled with blessings and contentment.

  6. I wish you a Happy New Year, Ruth. Thankfully, your daughter had a safe trip. It was very cold here in The Valley today.

  7. Beautiful photos from your woodsy walk. I like the quote at the end of the post. It's so true.
    Happy New Year to you and your family!

  8. May we all embrace that line of thinking as we gently walk into 2013. Happy New Year my friend.

  9. What a nice way to start the new year. I have stopped reading the newspapers long ago. Cannot bear to read bad new day after day after day. And complaining follows along as well.

    We are blessed in our environment and your lovely pictures are a testimony to this.

    Keep well and healthy.
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I love this post.

  10. My Aunt and I were talking after D died. Her own husband was only about two years older than D when he died of a heart attack as well. She said she was complaining to the Lord, "Why me?" when the thought went through her head, "Why not me? Why should I be exempt?" I remember that conversation ... one of those things one ponders in their heart.

  11. Those words ring so true. It is so easy to fall back in to the trap of feeling bitter or resentful when things don't go the way we planned.Beautiful photos and post and Happy New Year! I'll look forward to your next Big January update.

  12. Anonymous7:55 pm GMT-5

    Good luck with your January challenge

  13. Long-time, no visit! Your blog, as always, a visual delight. What is the last bird in this post--the little one with a black mask and reddish belly. I saw one here in Denver, but could not discover what it was. He (she?) had that exact coloring, but the feathers were smooth. Do they fluff up their feathers when it's cold?

  14. @denverdoc- nice to see you back. The bird is a Red-breasted Nuthatch and yes, they insulate themselves in the cold by fluffing up. They also eat a lot of seed at my feeder when the temps dip.


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