Looking Up From the Ground

I become so focused on my photography, that sometimes I forget to look up and just enjoy the moment.

The other day, I was intent on photographing this robin while I was at the Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens:

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Chasing a Robin

What appealed to me were the rich colors of the feathers on its back, as well as the distinctiveness of the white around its eye:

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Pretty Robin!

Yes, I can photograph robins in the backyard and I have (click here to see the momma robin outwitting me). But when I’m at the gardens, I photograph anything that appeals to me. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. But I always come back with a lot of pictures even on the days I plan on only walking.

As I was considering whether the robin was worth my time, I remembered to look up and notice – really notice – what was around me. Pretty, isn’t it?

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View at the Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens

The trees are leafing out and the grass is coming back. Straight ahead is the pond where I find the pitcher plants and the hummingbird. I relaxed my shoulders, took a deep breath, and just stood there, smiling at how much I was enjoying being outside.

This is what I heard:

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Wind Chimes at the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

The wind chimes were directly behind me. You can see they’re swinging – it was actually pretty windy that day. So I heard the chimes tinkling, the wind blowing, and the birds chirping loudly. It was nice.

As were many other things in the garden, including the tulips.

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Red Tulip at the Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens

It’s nice some days to just be and enjoy. To not always be rushing around, over thinking what comes next, and keeping mental checklists in my head. It’s good to just relax, smile, and enjoy.

Our happiness depends on the habit of mind we cultivate. So practice happy thinking everyday. Cultivate the merry heart, develop the happiness habit, and life will become a continual feast.
– Norman Vincent Peale


Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens Nature robins Virginia

dogear6 View All →

I am a backyard adventurer, philosopher and observer, recording my life in journals and photographs. Visit my blog at www.livingtheseasons.com.

27 Comments Leave a comment

  1. This whole post was a relaxing treat! The colors of the Tulips, the picture of the view you got when you looked up – I could almost hear those chimes and the Robin! Thank You!

    • Thanks Phil! That robin was really distinctive looking – I thought – so I’m glad you saw it too. I’m glad you enjoyed the post and thanks for the compliments.

  2. A very beautiful place, and a beautiful spring day! It’s wonderful when we take the time to enjoy nature, to notice it’s little wonders. Joyful captures!

    • Thanks Tiny! That’s really what my blog is about is noticing beauty everywhere, even a common robin. I’m glad you enjoyed the post! BTW – you do pretty good too with noticing and appreciating common everyday life.

  3. I know what you mean about looking up. Or the relaxing part, and enjoying what’s around me. I like doing that, but when I have a task at hand….I usually feel an obligation to that task more than I feel an ease to enjoy. I think we should be able to do both. colleen

  4. Hi Nancy,
    This is a beautiful post. You are asking a question that I often ask myself–whether the lens creates a wall or a window between me and my world. Sometimes I need to set the camera aside, but it’s not easy for me to do, because if I love it, I want to record the memory.
    Thanks so much for sharing this.

    • I’ve gone through the same indecision myself. I don’t want to always look at everything through the viewfinder, but I’m so glad later that I did so. I love looking back at my pictures – especially those of the family – but at the time, I didn’t want to bother. I just wanted to live in the moment.

      Thanks (as always) for stopping by.

      • Hi Nancy,
        I never HAVE as many pictures as I think I should or even as I think I took, so I just tell myself to take more than I think I will need or want. They are so sweet to look back on!

  5. Lovely post Nancy – and I agree, sometimes we forget to see the big picture when we’re focused on its elements. AND, I see we were both in a tulip-kind-of-mood this week! They’re gorgeous right now, aren’t they?!

    • They were so gorgeous. Unfortunately by the time I got to Ginter, they were past prime. And I was there only ten days earlier when there were NO tulips out.

      You nicely clarified what I said (thank you) that it is hard to see the big picture when we’re so focused on one element.

  6. I am constantly reminding myself to look up, especially when visiting old buildings, castles, cathedrals etc. Sometimes the ceilings are the best part! That is a particularly pretty robin and I love the tulips. They are my favourite flower.

  7. So beautiful – the color of the tulips is stunning! Robins are my alarm clock the past few weeks – they are busy piping their song just as the horizon begins to brighten. That also means we are getting up earlier and earlier! Have a gorgeous weekend, Nancy! Cheers K

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