Friday, September 30, 2011

Autumn Preview

This year's autumn was greeted by rains and winds. And sure, the days are cold and dark. Recently, it's been raining almost everyday, and I was afraid that the first leaves that had turned yellow would be shaken off by the wind, leaving the trees half-clad with the remaining leaves that were yet to transform to their golden glory. That would mean that there would be no thick forests of red and gold to feast my eyes on and to photograph. Would my second autumn turn out to be a disappointment?

On the other hand, the rains made the grass more verdant, which became a perfect mattress for the fallen leaves.

The cone flowers along the pond lingered to bask in the autumnal sunshine that briefly interrupted the rains.

The blueberry leaves and other bushes exuded a vibrant red color.

This birch was the first tree in the city (where I roamed about) that I found to have turned yellow almost all over.

The others in this queue were still green.

So far, the onset of autumn still offered pretty little things that one can truly take pleasure from.

And sometimes, our worst expectations may turn out to be an unexpected bliss. There may appear wonderful things just around the bend.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Blooming Shrubs that Intoxicate Me

Even in this early autumn, when they have withered away, their scents keep wafting in my mind and intoxicating my senses. They have long gone, and yet,  they seem to linger and disperse their sweet fragrance all around.

These are three of the several richly flowering shrubs that grow here in profusion. Their luxuriant little flowers are such a delight to behold and their fragrances send me walking on air as I pass by them.

First came the lilacs, one of spring's lovely gifts that occupy an endearing spot in the hearts of many, including me. Their different shades are certainly a feast for the eyes.

In summer, the mock orange shrub (philadelphus lewisii) blossoms into countless star-like flowers in their all-white glory.  These shrubs adorn many corners of the city and their flowers spread out their balmy scent everywhere. A whiff of their aroma makes me forget all the troubles in the world.


The damask roses in summer don't only splash the walkways with vibrant colors but also entice every passerby to stop for a while and drink in their sensational fragrance, which thickly saturates the air. wonderful life is with these gifts from our Creator who wants us not merely to live but also to enjoy living by providing us our senses and the things that can satisfy them!

"You are opening your hand
And satisfying the desire of every living thing."
- Psalm 145:16

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Vacuuming the Forests


Days are here again to frequent the forests in search of mushrooms, blueberries and lingon berries. Finding a car parked on the roadside where houses are nowhere in sight is not unusual. The cars are actually parked between the road and the forests or at the mouth of or alongside a path toward the woods. One can understand that the occupants of these cars are out there somewhere picking berries or mushrooms.

My hubby and I usually go there evenings after a day's work. Sometimes both of us pick mushrooms, but only the best among the several edible ones. Other times, he picks mushrooms and I pick berries.

Last year, I concentrated on picking blueberries, since it was my first time to see them. And so I had my fill of picking these berries.

This year looks like a lingon berry year for me, as I see more of these berries now than last year. So this time, I'm into picking more lingon. As I picked them for the first time, I realized that the berries grow by clusters and are easier to pluck than the blueberries. 

And they're so catchy with their deep red color!

Just another one of the simple pleasures of everyday that I want to store in my "cyber treasure chest".

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


Summer is waving goodbye and autumn is coming to say hello. These are days when nature transforms from its summer visage to autumnal resplendence.

Some days are rainy, but not the kind of rains that soak one up. Just light showers that refresh and glaze the foliage.

It did rain a little hard one day, but I still call it a beautiful day.

At times, after the rain, the ground steams up and the resulting mists float in the air like a flimsy veil.

Some days are full of sunshine. At times the sun is so glaring in its brightness but the air is not so hot.

Some days are dark and cloudy, but the clouds clear out in the evening and the sun emblazons the sky with its golden glow.

Some days are windy, inciting the trees to play their soulful music as the twigs sway gracefully and the leaves click one another. In the process, the leaves that have turned yellow are shaken off and they fall like showers of gold that beautifully blanket the ground under the trees.

The grasses that have been withered by the summer heat are replaced by new offshoots that are greener and more lustrous.

More late summer flowers are still blooming to fill the gray days with joyful colors.

The berries have ripened and tempt the onlookers to pick them.

The apples too are ready for harvesting.

The forests teem with mushrooms of different varieties.

The fishers are out to catch fishes that are more predominant in this period.

Insects, like bees, butterflies and ladybugs feast on the flowers' sweet bounty.

The nights are darker now, but the sun still glows as late as 8 p.m.

Many other marvelous things are taking place during this transition between summer and autumn. These are the miracles that are happening everyday, miracles which become possible only because of the great love and wisdom of our Creator. And these miracles will go on day after day, season after season, year after year, forever and ever.

"To you the day belongs; also, to you the night belongs.
You yourself prepared the luminary, even the sun.
It was you that set up all the boundaries of the earth;
Summer and winter—you yourself formed them."
- Psalm 74:16,17

"For all the days the earth continues, seed sowing and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night, will never cease.”
- Genesis 8:22

"Give thanks to the Lord of the lords:
For his loving-kindness is to time indefinite;
To the Doer of wonderful, great things by himself:
For his loving-kindness is to time indefinite."
- Psalm 136:3,4