winter woods

Yesterday, the sun made a shy, hesitating appearance. This was shout-aloud news in my house, seeing as these grey days could rival even those of Scotland. So I packed a camera, filled a thermos with The Chokky, pulled on boots, double-wound a scarf, and raced out the door. And then … I blinked … and it was gone.

I’d been waiting weeks to snare this sunshine, and had giddy thoughts of a walk in the woods—my heart’s home—to photograph light at play for a feature on a friend’s blog. My heart quickly sank as clouds tumbled across the sky. Winter was putting these woods to sleep: wafers of crystalline ice dusted the surface of ponds; leaves gently blanketed the forest floor; moss enveloped fallen logs. Sunlight, it seemed, wasn’t needed. Everything was just as it should be—except my expectations. My hands stung with cold against the camera. Everywhere I looked, a ribbon of grey surrounded the hills, drawing the trees closer. I sat on a pillow-shaped rock to drink hot chocolate and listen to the sounds of the forest creaking with cold. I let go of attachment, let go of resistance, and settled deeply into the calm that was mine if I wished it to be.

There will be many days ahead filled with sun, that I know. But there is also this, an early winter’s day, unapologetic and perfect in its imperfection …

frozen pond

old farmhouse shed

shed in the woods

tree moss

wire wreath


cedar log

birch bark

cedar log and moss


woods in winter