Observatory of the Quotidian

Because I live, you also will live.
                                                                                                             ~Jesus (John 14:19b)

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!  In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead...
                                                                                                             ~I Peter 1:3

On New Year’s Day (during a thaw) I went out with a mission: to find as many different green plants as I could.  I barely left my yard,  yet look what I found:

Box Shrub
Ivy & Sage
Rose & Alyssum
Now the snow has returned, and I look for the color in a landscape that (though lovely) can seem monochrome at first glance.  But these green, living things were under the snow before, and they are still there, still living.  Their condition reminds me of God’s people in the world; no matter how bleak, how dark, how cold the winter of this world, the life that is in Jesus Christ causes them to be green and living.  Do you know this life?

The first day of 2011 closed with a uniquely beautiful sunset.
This can be a year of unimaginable wonder.  God is waiting to reveal himself to us if we will only trust and obey him, and his plans for us are too great for us to understand.  I hope that you will join me in seeking him and discovering what he has in store for the bright, new year.


Why, hello!  Welcome to the Observatory.  You're one of my first visitors—thank you so much for coming.  Who am I, you ask?  I'm Edith, the keeper of the Observatory.  This is my first project of this kind, and today's the Grand Opening, you know!  It's the first day of winter and I thought that would be a good time to start.

May I show you around?  Although the Observatory has its Grand Opening today, I've been collecting observations steadily for over a month.

The autumn was beautiful and full of color in late November.  I had a lovely walk in the autumn rain.
Red Leaf Drop

The nights were misty and increasingly cool.  (I thought I should just add, this photo is completely unedited—it was taken through a window.)
Misty Moon

The southward-slanting light made things fun to photograph, especially in the afternoon...
Mosaic Pieces
Fir Branch in the Sun
Drowned Leaves

...and I was having fun noticing details I'd never stopped to examine before.  (This is birch bark, but it reminds me of a Japanese illustration of mountains.)
Birch Bark

Signs of winter were starting to creep in; here Christmas comes to the garden center.
Gazing Ball

In early December we got our first sprinkling of snow.
A Sprinkling of Snow
Winter Conquers Autumn
Red Berries

Then, almost halfway through the month, a Blizzard hit!  I bundled myself up and fought my way through the flurries and drifts as it came down:
Old Man Evergreen
Slush on the Branch

The next day the landscape had been transfigured.
Across the Road
Snowclad Trees
Winter Blue

Since then, I've been enjoying the snow and carrying on my mission of noticing and documenting the quotidian.
Still Life Leaf
(Seasons mix at their edges)
Woven Into the Sky
(Many neighborhood trees are majestic, once noticed)
Fence Screw
(Even ordinary fences deserve a second look)
Baby Pinecone
(On a tree in front of a store; nature is irrepressibly wonderful!)

My, how the time has gone!  I hope you enjoyed the tour...

... and I hope to see you again soon!

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