Earth Day Blessings

I think it might be safe to finally say that spring is officially here. I know I’ve been posting about it for a couple months already, but we’re now able to wear short pants and flip flops on a regular basis, so we’ll call that the “official” opening!

As such, life has been pretty busy for us, just trying to keep up in the yard and  get things ready for all the summer projects to come! This is our first year in this home so we’re still learning the ins and outs of the property and all it’s seasonal needs. Long story short, this is essentially the excuse I’m giving to explain my lack of posts these last two weeks! But despite this online absence, I’ve still been spending a great deal of time behind the shutter working on developing my photography skills and fine-tuning some editing.

In terms of my 52 week challenge, I’m a few weeks behind in updates but we’ll try to rectify that over this coming week. In the meantime, here are my themes for weeks 16 & 17, “Blessings” and “Earth” respectively. (For anyone keeping track, I am aware that I’m missing week 13- Body, and week 15- Emotion….I’m still working on them!).

The word blessing really brings to mind a couple of things, the first of course the most obvious are the blessings in my life. I would include (among them) my little family, my extended family and friends, my health, my beautiful home and peaceful property, naturally.

It also brought to mind spiritual or religious imagery. A more literal take perhaps but still made for an interesting subject. I was brought up in the Church so my husband and I make an effort to go every other week so, and after a recent mass I asked permission from our Parish Priest to take some photos inside the church. I avoided the altar itself as there were parishioners present and I wanted to stay out of their way out of respect, but I managed to find a beautiful small set up with prayer candles and the stained glass image of St. Timothy, our Church’s Patron Saint almost hidden, in a corner near the altar.

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This next photo is one I took during the Easter season just after Palm Sunday. While it’s religious connotation might not connect well with everyone, I love how it turned out with the focus on the words from the mass and the soft but bright light coming in from behind.

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And of course, under the heading of ‘blessings’, I also attempted a spur of the moment family shot on our front deck. Not the best picture perhaps but they are all generally willing models for me so I’ll take what I can get today!

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On a completly unrelated topic, recently I read an article about elephants in zoos and how there are fewer and fewer due to the cost of keeping them and increase in protections on them (making it more challenging to acquire them). Initially my reaction was “how sad”, I love seeing such big creatures, and it’s too bad that the next generation will be unlikely to ever see one in person. But then that thought led my mind to a different track, where you wonder if you’re just contributing to the problem by paying to see any of these animals at all. Truly an elephant doesn’t belong in Toronto, or London, or San Diego, so why would they keep them? or any animals for that matter. Perhaps part of saving our earth and protecting that investment for the next generation includes protecting the natural species and their natural habitats in the way that nature intended them to live and thrive?

But having said that, I confess I would be sad to see them go and miss out on moments where you watch a little one seeing something so new and amazing for the first time. In the spirit of Earth Day, a friend and I took her young daughter to the zoo for the first time (though I think it was more for us than her!). In the photo below you can almost see the neurons firing in her little brain as she figures it all out! It’s a learning opportunity that would be hard to recreate in any accessible environment and is really awesome to witness.

DSC_0509 (2)Despite some of these bigger questions of ethics (as I’m sure many have when they visit places like this), we had a wonderful day and enjoyed seeing some of these gorgeous animals, and especially the babies! The zoo in springtime really is a special experience, and very fitting for the inspirational theme of “Earth”.

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