And just like that, 2016 is gone. For me, it was a long and difficult year that was plagued with sickness and injury and loss.
I spent much of December grieving the year so that I could enter the new year in freedom and hope. While I loved these five images in color, I felt black and white was more fitting to how my December felt.
As the new year begins, I look forward with expectation and hope to what will be. I am not so ignorant to believe the past does not shape our future, so I also look back to see what consistencies have been there for me. There are many sure things my past has held- my faith, family, and friends… and this beautiful blog roll. We celebrate our fifth year together this year. It makes my heart happy to have looked back each month with such lovely and talented ladies. Start with the brilliant Vanessa and then click on through to the rest of the ladies. You will not be disappointed.
I had the honor of doing the project, The Hours, again this year. It was a collective project in which a group of photographers, who met on Flickr, each posted a single image every month, taken during a particular hour of the day. We started in January with 7am and then moved through the day by an hour each month: to 8am in February and so forth.
These are my 2015 submissions.
It was fascinating to watch the day unfold from people from all over the world. While I will miss this project, I am looking forward to the projects that 2016 will bring.
A dear friend shared this beautiful poem by Jan Richardson. I feel like I am surrounded by friends that are traveling in the dark. It is a season of life none of us escape. May it bless you as it blessed me.
A Blessing for Traveling in the Dark
if you can.
More slowly still.
this is no place
to break your neck
by crashing into
what you cannot see.
it is true:
have different tasks
and if you
have arrived here unawares,
if you have come
this might be no place
you should dawdle.
I do not know
what these shadows
ask of you,
what they might hold
that means you good
It is not for me
whether you should linger
or you should leave.
But this is what
I can ask for you:
That in the darkness
there be a blessing.
That in the shadows
there be a welcome.
That in the night
you be encompassed
by the Love that knows
I have had a month full of rest and joy. Looking for things that make me happy has been an encouraging exercise for my soul. I have found these two quotes from Thomas Merton to be inspiring.
If we are to love one another truly our love will be graced with a clear-sighted prudence which sees and respects the designs of God upon each separate soul. ~Thomas Merton
If we are going to love others at all, we must make up our minds to love well otherwise our love is a delusion. ~Thomas Merton
I have also been starting my days with this blessing. It has touched my heart. May it touch yours.
May you listen to your longing to be free.
May the frames of your belonging be large enough for the dreams of your soul.
May you arise each day with a voice of blessing whispering in your heart…something good is going to happen to you.
May you find harmony between your soul and your life.
May the mansion of your soul never become a haunted place.
May you know the eternal longing that lies at the heart of time.
May there be kindness in your gaze when you look within.
May you never place walls between the light and yourself.
May you be set free from the prisons of guilt, fear, disappointment, and despair.
May you allow the wild beauty of the invisible world to gather you, mind you, and embrace you in belonging.
For the month of July, I will be looking for the color yellow. It still holds the feeling of happy for me while being more specific in my searching. Please join me. I will continue to tag the images with #practicingmypractice.
A friend on Facebook posted this poem today. I cannot stop thinking about it.
Mamiya 645 | Ilford XP2
It is a kind of love, is it not?
How the cup holds the tea,
How the chair stands sturdy and foursquare,
How the floor receives the bottoms of shoes
Or toes. How soles of feet know
Where they’re supposed to be.
I’ve been thinking about the patience
Of ordinary things, how clothes
Wait respectfully in closets
And soap dries quietly in the dish,
And towels drink the wet
From the skin of the back.
And the lovely repetition of stairs.
And what is more generous than a window?
The Patience of Ordinary Things, Pat Schneider
Mamiya 645 | Ilford XP2
I want to be like the cup of tea, and hold those that come into my life with gentleness and gracefulness.
I want to be like the floor, and receive what comes to me with sturdy assurance.
I want to be like the soap, and quietly be exactly where I ought to be.
I want to be like the window, and be generous of my view and the beauty that I see.
For our 21st anniversary, my husband and I went to La Jolla, CA for the weekend. It was lovely to get away to such a beautiful city and do nothing. Well, except shoot film. Both my husband and I love to shoot film and took seven different cameras between us! One camera I love on vacation is my Land Camera 420. My 10 on 10 this month is photos from this lovely polaroid camera.
I am doing this project with some wonderful photographers. Please visit Anna’s site for her 10 on 10 then continue on through the blog roll.
This last year I have had the honor of participating in a collaborative blog called The Hours. The concept was simple. Each photographer would submit one photo taken at the same hour each month. We started with 7 am in January and went through he hours of the day as the months passed. It was wonderful to watch women and families wake up all over the world. With each new month, the hour changed and the mood of the blog changed with it. Each photographer brought a piece of her life to the project.
Here are my selections from The Hours.
I have loved this project and am excited to do it again in 2015.