Posted in Air, Autumn, Beginnings, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Fire, Gifts, Gratitude, Maryland, Meditation, Mindfulness, Nature, Photography, Quotes, Sky, Spirit, Walking & Wandering, Walktober, Weather, Wonder

9. Inhale, exhale

Maria’s clouds moved out near sunset yesterday and took some of the sunset colors with her.

Breath is the bridge which connects life to consciousness, which unites your body to your thoughts. Whenever your mind becomes scattered, use your breath as the means to take hold of your mind again.

~ Thich Nhat Hanh, The Miracle of Mindfulness: An Introduction to the Practice of Meditation

Last night’s moon.

Maria’s band of clouds gradually moved out late yesterday afternoon, leaving just a few on the eastern horizon at sunset.  The moon was just overhead when the sun went down.  I almost missed it, but thought to look up as I arrived back at the house (swatting mosquitoes along the way).

Early morning colors.

This morning’s sun rose up in a clear sky, a few swishes of color lightly painted on the sky just above the treeline.  The morning star was there to say hello, although it might not have been a star.  It could have been a planet.  Venus, perhaps.  I’m not sure.

Lines of sunlight on the lawn.

It was still warm and somewhat humid this morning, but not as warm and humid as yesterday morning.  The mosquitoes were still out in force until the wind picked up and blew them elsewhere.  I suppose the wind keeps them from honing in on whatever scent I have that is attractive to them.  Blood type matters, too, according to a number of articles that have been circulating recently.  Apparently my blood type is quite tasty to them.

I happened to look down and there were little blue flowers growing in the lawn that needs to be mowed.

Yoga practice was good.  Nothing too challenging this morning since my muscles need a little bit of a rest.  Meditation was very good.  I found myself laughing for no particular reason.  A just because burst of laughter.  Just because it was a beautiful morning.  Just because I had a good night’s sleep.  Just because I find myself sinking deeper into meditation more easily now.  Just because Izzy Cat nudged me to let me know she was practicing with me.

Morning sunlight touching the juniper.

Although the early morning sky was beautiful, it didn’t present much to photograph so I started looking at where the light was going and what it was doing.  It looked so lovely in the juniper, lighting up some of the trees, and streaming across the lawn.

Growing lighter.

There were quite a few birds out and about.  Some were cawing and calling, some were honking, some were peeping, and some were cheeping.  I could hear the Ovenbird’s teacher-teacher-teacher being carried through the woods.  They should be leaving soon.  Perhaps it was calling out on its way by.  The usual Gray Catbirds were mewing back and forth.  Given that they are related to the Mockingbirds and are capable of mimicking other birds’ songs, you’d think they’d come up with something more original for me.  Then again, maybe they have and I just didn’t recognize it was the catbirds singing.

Sunlight on cedar.

Mr. and Mrs. Cardinal and the Three Amigos (the mockingbirds) were hanging out near the broken old boat we found in the marsh.  I noticed Mr. Cardinal first.  His brilliant red stood out amongst the background greenery of the phragmites (grasses).  Mrs. C’s beak caught my attention next.  She was a little lower down, sitting on a branch of a small evergreen.  The Three Amigos were eating something that had fallen on the boat.  I suspect the wild cherry tree nearby has dropped some of its fruit.  Northern Mockingbirds are omnivores, but apparently they like to eat fruit in the fall and winter months.  I’m still puzzled about why there are three of them hanging out together.  They are usually found in pairs or alone.  Yet there they are, the three of them, right this moment, sitting on the fence that’s just outside the office window.

Sweet gums shimmering in the morning light.

Tomorrow I should be able to take a walk in the morning.  I’ve been hanging out near the house, partly because I’ve been going out in my bare feet and partly because of the mosquitoes.  The farther I get from the house, the more I get swarmed.  Then I run back to the house with a cloud of mosquitoes surrounding me.  Yikes.  The cold front moving through today — the one that’s bringing us windy conditions — should chase the mosquitoes back into hiding until next week when it warms up again.

Speaking of walks, don’t forget about Walktober!  The in-a-nutshell version, in case you’re new to this, is that you take a walk, run, swim, skip, skate, bike ride, or move in some way outdoors and then you write up a blog post, with or without pictures, telling us all about it. Come to think of it, you could walk or whatever indoors if that’s your preference.  After you post, you’ll come back here to a post I specify as the Official Walktober Post (which I will post on October 18 this year) and leave a link.  I’ll gather together all of the links in one big post sometime after the Walktober dates.  The dates this year are October 1 through October 18.  If you need more time, let me know and I’ll extend it past the 18th.  As usual, I’m hoping to go somewhere that isn’t the Wabi-Sabi Ranch for my walk and I think I know just the place.

Sunlight sliding along the crepe myrtle.

Thank you so much for stopping by today.  Be good, be kind, be loving.  Just Be.  🙂

Wild cherry.

A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy:  331)  The beautiful and brilliant red of Mr. Cardinal standing out against the green of a pine tree.  332)  Early morning bursts of laughter.  333)  Learning (or perhaps relearning) to see light in ways that are not always obvious.  334)  Autumn colors beginning to show here and there.  335)  Fall colors in my hair.

Author:

Robin is a photographer, artist, writer, wife, sometime poet, mom, grandma, daughter, sister, friend, and occasional traveler currently living on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. She finished a 365 commitment to get outside every day in 2011, and has turned it into a lifelong commitment taking one or more walks each day. Robin will continue to share her walks through her words and images on Breezes at Dawn. Older posts can be found at Life in the Bogs, her previous blog. Robin and her husband are in the midst of renovating the house and property they refer to as the Wabi-Sabi Ranch, 35 acres that include marsh, a dock on a tidal creek, meadows, and woodlands. Every day brings new discoveries.

15 thoughts on “9. Inhale, exhale

  1. Fall colours in your hair? Mmmm – I like that idea!! My eldest is also loved by the little blood suckers – we tell her it’s because she is so very delectable 🙂 I’m intrigued by the fact that after just 9 days of gentle stretching and holding – and mild to moderate effort – I can walk faster for longer and further despite greatly improved temperatures. This alone is keeping me motivated for now.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is wonderful, Pauline! I’ve noticed a difference in this short amount of time, too. I feel looser. I won’t go as far as to say younger, but it’s nice that my joints no longer feel stiff and my muscles are happy with all the exercise and stretching. 🙂

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  2. A lovely day by the looks, same here, very breezy. (Good laundry-drying day!) Feeling pretty mellow on day 8 with 35 min. 🙂 Took a walk afterwards, taking in all the beauty around me. I saw a small heron (Green?) and several rainbows in the high thin clouds, listened to the river slipping over the stones, the wind rustling the leaves, and felt so grateful.
    I realized I’ve never done yoga consistently every day in a row since I started 5 1/2 years ago. What?? Look what have I been missing! Since my yoga is meditative, concentrating on the breath (bringing my mind back with ‘Be. Here. Now’) it is doubly beneficial, physical poses and mental rest. I also noted that spending more time with me, just being, not doing while giving myself the space, has been mellowing. At the end, I do 3 mudras to bring peace, joy and harmony to the planet, sending the ripples outward.
    So glad the Universe conspired to bring me this challenge – a precious gift. Thank you! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re welcome, Eliza. And thank you. 🙂 Can you share the mudras? I’ve been ending with the metta meditations I’ve been doing since the last winter solstice.
      I’ve been experiencing that same sense of presence (or being present) when I go out for a walk. And mellowness, too. I’m very mellow these days.

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      1. Perhaps mudra isn’t the right term, but it is a practice we sometimes end with in class after savasana. Sitting up, we raise our arms overhead, visualizing pulling down from Source Energy our desire (peace, joy, harmony, etc) with hands ending in prayer position at the heart, repeated 3x. It can be for self or others. I like to visualize it radiating outward in endless ripples. Building compassion starts with self and emanates outward. Any positive vibe helps!

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        1. I don’t know if mudra is the right term or not, but it sounds wonderful, Eliza. I was doing a “heart centered” meditation yesterday that involved breathing in light and then sending it back out to heal the world.

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Comments are delightful and always appreciated. I will respond when I can (life is keeping me busy!), and/or come around to visit you at your place soon. Thank you!

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