Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Ever Wonder How?

Please note that the Posts of the Week should be back next Wednesday. Thanks for understanding this holiday slowdown. Please remember to click on each image to enlarge.

Ever wonder how a flower can be plain and unremarkable throughout summer but appear striking and eye-catching after its death and well into the winter?

Ever wonder how a sunset can glow on the horizon and add fire and warmth to the end of a cold winter's day?

Ever wonder how such a fragile creature learns to trust a human presence and allow a camera to click loudly nearby?

Ever wonder how a crazy little dog can disappear for no longer than three seconds but come back with a fresh collection of burrs?

Ever wonder how that same dog can challenge you with a "let's do it again" look and make a game out of removing said burrs? As soon as each one was plucked from his back and discarded, he chased it down again. Did I mention that he's a crazy dog?

Ever wonder how human feet could be this small? These belong to my newest neighbour, Liliana Elizabeth - sister to Winston the leaf-thrower and octopus-conqueror.

Ever wonder how a newborn's tiny hand can seek and grasp the comfort of another human hand? That's Frank's finger offering security.

Ever wonder how a few lights - blurry, out of focus and reflected in glass can still dazzle our eyes and give holiday cheer?

I wish you all a Safe, Healthy and Happy New Year.
See you in 2010!


Doc said...

Great pictures Hilary. I especially like the dog. Your query righs so true. Dogs can get into anything in 3 seconds flat!

Saz said...

OMGSH Hilary those images are fabulous..each one better than the other, when l saw the pooch, my hear missed a beat...then the little tiny feet oh gosh...

these represent the time of year, grateful for the people pets and nature in our lives,

there is nothing else.....

very poignant, by choice or chance you pulled the prize outta the bag with this one Hilary!! You get post of the week in my book!

luv saz x

Brian Miller said...

beautiful the glow over the hill, but i am a sucker for baby life is so tender...i hope you have an amazing new year!

Country Girl said...

I have wondered all these things, too. My friend, I wish you wonder in the New Year and that you continue to share it with all of us.

And I can't believe all those burrs on Benny!!

Suldog said...

The last photo reminded me of something I enjoyed this holiday season - still am, as a matter of fact. It's sort of weird, but so am I...

I was sitting on our couch, reading, and I noticed the lights from our Christmas trees (yup, trees) reflecting in the glass front of the television. I was entranced for about ten minutes. For some reason, it really reminded me of what Christmas lights looked like when I was a child - a bit out of focus, soft, warm, one color blurring into the next.

I wish we had the ability to turn off our adult vision and have children eyes for a few minutes any time we wanted.

Lori said...

I love your veiw and wonder of the world around you. Beautiful pictures and thoughts Hilary. I agree with FF&F I vote this as POTW also. I am sure most will agree with us. :)

Happy New Year to you and yours Hilary. Here's to a wonderful journey through 2010! XX Lori

Phyllis E said...

Hi Cuzzie. We sure can identify with burrs. Quintzy once ran briefly into the woods and came back out with his tail stuck firmly to his back – not to mention additional burrs buried in his paw fur.

We had quite a grooming session that morning!

A Happy, Healthy and Peaceful New Decade to you and all of your "boys".

Cuzzie P

Leah J. Utas said...

Beautiful work again, Hilary. Love the sunset behind the hill. The lamppost in the pic is a wonderful touch. It's not time to leave Narnia yet, is it?

Frank Baron said...

This post is simply (wait for it)...wonder-full!

yw ;)

ellen abbott said...

So wonderful Hilary! The first and 2nd to last.

Daryl said...

I often wonder how I made it through a morning before I met you .. and I can answer the woodpecker question: clearly hunger trumps the click of a shutter!

Michael said...

Beautifully precious snapshots of life. :)

Jinksy said...

I often wonder how you always manage to get such a beautiful selection of pictures on your blog! lol :)

Maggie May said...

Beautiful photos, as always. I especially loved the bird on a feeder, baby feet, the sunset behind trees. Lovely!

Nuts in May

Linda Bob Grifins Korbetis Hall said...

Your life is filled with curiosity and wonderful wonders, how exciting!

I absolutely admire your way of logic and thinking...

high intelligence, cute mindset.

Rosaria Williams said...

Oh, National Geographic lesson applied here. Good job. Can't get enough of these.

Anonymous said...

I'm with Sazzie on this one Hilary...Post of the Week from me too.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful images, Hilary!
I thought you'd topped it all with those baby fingers & baby feet, and then I saw the final shot of colorful lights and Menorah flames both reflected in the window.

Saz said it: POTW!

Yolanda said...

I so totally agree with you on the beauty surrounding us at all times. I hope you have a wonderful 2010.

Shrinky said...

I look at my eldest's size 13 shoes and gap in wonder to think the same feet that fills them once was carried inside my tummy!

That comical shot of Benny with his head tilted says it all - mischief!!

Nancy said...

Ever wonder how someone can take pictures that always warm the heart?

Hope you have a great break. It is necessary sometimes! Happy New Years almost Eve.

Joanna Jenkins said...

Oh my....... Those tiny feet made me sign and smile. Very sweet.

And speaking of sweet-- So is your dog!

Thanks for a year filled with great words and images!
Happy 2010.

Dawning Inspiration said...

Hi and Happy New Year!
Those teeny, tiny little feet - oh so precious! Love the sunrise/sunset on the hill... wow.

L. D. said...

This is a wonderful post. I like your questions and the great photos that go with them. Sweet little dog and a sweet little girl. Babies are so small and precious. Thanks

Lulda Casadaga said...

Wonderful pics as always...Love the burr sweater! LOL

The bird ...reminds me to put more feed out for my feather friends.

AND what joy! A precious, little baby. Wishing you well and a happy happy...Keep Warm and Safe!

I know I'll be seeing some of those blurry lights on New Years eve! :D

Reb said...

Hilary, I wonder about a lot of things. Those are such beautiful photos - love the sunset hill and the reflected lights.

Anita said...

The baby's feet takes me back to the days of staring at my little ones' feet. And that takes me further to think of a baby's smell and softness. :)

Happy New Year to you too!

Anonymous said...

Great post Hilary!!! I'm in wonder of most things every day, lol...that sounded rather flighty huh? Hee hee. Benny is so sneaky, lol...that's such a funny story! Hope you have a really fun New Year's Eve and I wish you all the best in the New Year!!!

Unknown said...

I wonder these same things all the time Hilary and you have great images to back them up! I especially love the way the weightless snowflakes halfway fill up the barren flower as if it's a cup. And I adore those tiny little feet of your neighbor's baby... I haven't had babies in decades, but I love to browse in the shoe department just to see what they've come up with now!
Have a happy, healthy and prosperous new year!

Tammie Lee said...

this is a lovely post, tender and moving with lovely images too.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing these great pics. I love the one of the baby's hand... how precious is that! Have a Happy New Year!! :)
The Bach

Mental P Mama said...

One thing is don't wonder is why I come here;) Just beautiful....

ethelmaepotter! said...

"Ever wonder how a flower can be plain and unremarkable throughout summer but appear striking and eye-catching after its death and well into the winter?" I love that - both your prose and the photo. In fact, ALL the photos.

I mentioned (in one of my recent posts) that there are photographers in the blogosphere whose works rival anything ever published by National Geographic. I was thinking specifically of you when I wrote those words.
Have a wonderful New Years Week!

Fliterary said...

Beautiful, beautiful photos!!

Elizabeth Bradley said...

I wonder if I'll ever be able to take such wonderful photos. That dog is too cute. My, but those burrs are HUGE, our burrs out here are tiny and evil. They get wedged between the dogs toes and are so difficult to remove.

Karen said...

Your dog sounds a little like mine. He will eat moss, just to make us chase him and then he throws up. But the next day will try to do it again. Lovely pics, as always!

MaggieGem said...

Wonder of wonders... how do manage to find these wonders? Great pics; I love the first and the last, fabulous!

This Life Thru the Lens

Susan said...

Wonderful things to ponder...and smile about.

Anonymous said...

I LOVE each and every wonder here!

Sueann said...

Fabulous pictures and such a beautiful baby. Small feet indeed! And it is amazing how comfort is sought at such an early age. Love your puppy!!
Happy New Year

the Bag Lady said...

Happy New Year, Hilary!

Boozy Tooth said...

Hils... One of my favorite things about 2009 was meeting you!

I feel so fortunate to have made your acquaintance and to have been recognized by you and to be able to come and immerse myself in the wonderful, insightful and profound musings of The Smitten Image.

You are a lovely lovely soul with a keen eye and an expression that truly sinks into the core of whatever you are examining ~ whether it's a crumbling flower, a fiery sunset, a wild trusting bird, a burr-filled pup {he was my favorite!}, tiny fresh newborn hands and feet, or a collection of reflected light.

I totally agree with Saz from Fat, frumpy and fifty... you deserve to award yourself with Post of The Week for this one. Well done!

Casa Hice ♥ you!

Hilary said...

• Thanks, Doc. They can indeed.. and sometimes carry the smell (like that of dead fish) for three months. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Saz, you're too kind. Thank you so much for such kind words. We'll save the POTW for visitors though. :) You're quite right about there being nothing other than people, pets and nature. Wait! Where does wine fit in? ;) Your kind comment means a lot to me. Thanks for that. :)

• Thank you, Brian. I fell in love with those tiny feet the moment I saw them - and the rest of her, of course but those feet just grabbed me. Dexterous wee things. ;) Thanks for the good wishes and all the very best to you and yours also. :)

• Kate, thanks very much for the wonderful wish. I feel the same about your and your photography so right back at you. Thanks for your friendship. :)

• Suldog, I see lights that way whenever I take my glasses off.. or have a couple of drinks. ;) I know exactly what you mean though. Every now and then you see something in a way that transports you way back to that time of magic. It very often shows in your writing. Thanks for sharing your magic. :)

• Lori, thank you so much for the very lovely words. I appreciate the kind suggestion but POTW isn't for my posts. :) Wishing you the very best for the New Year too. :)

• Cuzzie that would be some grooming session for Quintzy. I hope he took well to it. I once saw a squirrel having a hell of a time trying to jump from one branch to another because its tail was so covered in burrs that it wouldn't release him from the tree bark. He'd jump and flop right back against the tree, then finally work his tail free and jump only to have his velcro-like tail stick again. It was heartbreaking and hysterically funny at the same time. Thanks for the good wishes, Phyllis. I wish the very same to you and Mike. And please give Quintzy a scratch behind the ears for me :)

• Thank you, Leah. I love the way you notice things like that lamp post. It's presence reminds that this (along with most of my at-home photos) was taken in a park. I suspect that in many good ways, you have taken up permanent residence in Narnia. No need to leave. Thanks always for your lovely comments. :)

• Frank, is it any wonder why I keep you? ;) Thanks, dear. :)

• Thank you, Ellen. Much appreciated. :)

• Daryl, you are so sweet. Thank you for that - you made my day. :) You're probably right about the woodpecker but that's just not so for many birds despite it being feeding time. Most will not come anywhere near the feeder until I'm done filling it and am behind closed doors again. But Woodpeckers and Chickadees are bold and seemingly fearless... and incredibly beautiful. Thanks for your always kind words. Like your friendship, they're very much cherished. :)

• Thank you, Cabo. That's precisely how I see your blog posts. :)

• Thanks, Jinsky. I get lucky now and again. ;)

• Thank you kindly, Maggie. I sure hope you're feeling better by now. Thanks for stopping by to visit despite feeling so poorly. Sending my best, positive thoughts and hugs your way, my friend. :)

• Ji, thank you so much for such kind compliments. I'm glad you're enjoying my blog and I'm happy to have you on board. Thank you for stopping by. :)

• Thanks very kindly, Lakeviewer. Such kind words. Much appreciated. :)

• Moannie, thank you. The sentiment is much appreciated. :)

• KC, thanks very much. I believe the flames of which you speak is the reflection of a small candelabra. This photo was taken at Frank's sister's place so I guarantee it wasn't a menorah. :) I appreciate the kind words very much. :)

• Welcome, Yolanda and thanks very much for the kind wishes. I wish the very same to you and yours. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Shrinky, so true about those feet. My younger son is pretty tall and has the matching feet. They used to be SO tiny.. sigh! And you've read Benny exactly right. Thanks for stopping by. :)

Hilary said...

• Thanks kindly, Nancy. Much appreciated. I wish you and yours a fantastic New Year too. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Joanna, thanks for the kind words. Benny is Frank's dog but I've practically adopted him. I'm glad the baby feet evoked a smile and a sigh. They did exactly that for me too Thanks so much for stopping by. Happy 2010 to you too. :)

• SD, Happy New Year to you too and thanks so much for the visit. I'm glad you like the photos. I personally find those tiny feet irresistible. :)

• Larry, thanks so much for the kind words. I'm glad you enjoyed the photos. And you're right - there isn't anything more precious than a wee one. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Lulda, you made me laugh out loud with "burr sweater." Make sure that those New Years Eve blurry lights are not on your way home from a party! Thanks for your kind words. Wishing you and yours a very Happy New Year. :)

• Thank you kindly, Reb. I'm glad you liked them. Thanks always for your visits. :)

• Anita, I'm glad that my photos evoked some sweet memories for you. Images of babies almost always do that for me too. Thanks for the good wishes. :)

• Rain, not flighty at all. If you weren't in wonder of what's around you, you'd be pretty dull. And you're certainly anything but! Thanks for the good wishes, my friend. Right back at you. :)

• Jane, thank you so much for your always-warm comments. I loved how the snow filled that flower too. I'm glad you noticed it. And sigh.. babies. I used to browse the girls' clothes because by the time I had my second son, and knew that was it for me, I couldn't help but look at all the items they might have worn had they been girls. ;) Thanks so much for the very warm wishes. I wish you and yours the very same. Thanks for your visits. :)

• Tammie Lee, thank you so much for the very kind words. Much appreciated. Hope you have a great New Year. :)

• Bach, thanks kindly for stopping by to comment. A baby's hand (and foot) is quite irresistible, isn't it? So tiny and perfect. Thanks for the kind wishes. Right back at you and Lady Cat. :)

• Thanks kindly, MPM. I'm sure glad that you do. Your visits are always so appreciated. :)

• EthelMae, thank you so much for such an incredibly kind compliment. That's just the nicest thing I've heard all year! And I do mean 2009. Perhaps even the decade. ;) Thank you so very much for that. May you and yours have a wonderful New Year.

• Thank you, Lisa. Much appreciated. :)

• Thanks very kindly, Elizabeth. These burrs are probably just a little larger than marbles. The dog, on the other hand is pretty small. ;) Mini-burrs sound really difficult. I'll bet the dogs want to cut their walks short after collecting them. Thanks so much for stopping by. :)

• Karen, Benny is actually Frank's dog but he's here with him when he visits most weekends. He's also been known to roll in dead fish (Frank lives by a creek). My cat also does the eat to throw up trick - only it's grass. Gotta love those crazy critters. Thanks for the kind words and for your visit. :)

• Maggie, thank you so much. Your kind words are very much appreciated. I'm glad you enjoyed the shots. :)

• Thanks very much, Susan. Enjoy your pondering. :)

• Thank you, Meredith. Much appreciated. Thanks for the visit. :)

• SueAnn, thanks very kindly. It is indeed a wonder how that instinct is so present and obvious early on. Thanks for your kind words and have a great New Year your own self. :)

• Thank you, Baggie. Right back at you! :)

• Alix, thank you for such an absolutely lovely comment. I feel so touched by your kind sentiments. I'm so glad our blog paths have crossed also. It's amazing how many wonderful people there are out in that blogosphere and you, of course are certainly one of them. Thank you for such a lovely sentiment. I can't express just how much I appreciate it. Happy New Year to you and yours. :)

Land of shimp said...

What a fantastic post, Hilary. A nice way to tie together seemingly unrelated subject matter, which is a nice metaphor for an entire life.

I wonder about a great deal. Life is full of questions, and we haven't many answers, but asking them is such fun.

Have a marvelous New Year, full of reasons to gape in wonder, and sometimes shake your head in confusion, because that gives balance too!

ds said...

So beautiful, and so evocative of the season. I'm so glad to have found you this year. Thank you for all of the beauty, humor and grace that you bring to us all. Happy happy 2010 to you!

lime said...

oh the dog looking at you with the cockeyed head tilt is too funny. and the wee one grasping frank's finger...we are hardwired for togetherness aren't we?

Travis Erwin said...

Happy New Year. and everybody should be as luck to have a crazy dog.

Samson said...

Lovely post Hilary

Happy New Year

Clouds before sunrise

david mcmahon said...

Ever wonder how you were blessed with the ability to put words and images together in rare fashion?

You are so gifted, Hilary.

This, without doubt, would have been a Post of the Day on Authorblog!

My very warmest wishes for 2010 ...

Lynne said...

Lovely photos and thoughts. Happy new year to you.

Valerie said...

There's a message in every photograph, Hilary. I loved them all. Happy New Year and may your personal sun shine brightly throughout.

SandyCarlson said...

Happy New Year, my friend! These photos are wonderful. That new baby is precious. God bless.

LadyFi said...

Love the thoughts and pictures... and that sure is one playful dog!

Grumpy Old Ken said...

What a lovely blog. Happy new ear.

Rajesh said...

Interesting & beautiful.
Wish you Happy & Prosperous New Year.

Althea said...

Hello!! Happy New Year...great pics as always...

I think I'd survive Canada in Winter....Europe in Winter is doable :) Having fun...hope you're all well :)

Dave said...

Enjoyed your thoughtful comments with your photos Hilary. Happy new millenium - Dave

Anonymous said...

What a gift for wonder you have, Hilary.

Great shots of some of the wonders in God's creation.

May 2010 be a wonderful happy, healthy year for you and yours, friend.

Tabor said...

Wonderful gift to me, my visit to your post today. You always see the world through rose colored glasses.

Hilary said...

• Thank you, Shimp. I'm glad you enjoyed the photos. You've caught me at what I do so often - that is try to find a common theme for my otherwise random photos. You're right about the asking being part of the fun and part of the learning of not just that particular answer but of others along the way. Thanks always for your good wishes and kind words. I hope your New Year is starting out great for you. :)

• DS thank you so much for your always-kind and supportive words. I too am glad we hooked up. You make the blogging journey more interesting. Happy 2010 to you, too. :)

• Lime, you're so right about that. I even see it in one of my cats and pooch Benny (in the photo) - seemingly (harmless) enemies by day but sometimes when we've been out for longer than either of them would like, they can be found relaxing side by side. But the wee one illustrated it best. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thank you, Travis. Happy New Year to you too. And you're right about the crazy canine. :)

• Thank you, Samson. And to you and yours too. :)

• David, so good to see you! Thank you so much for always offering such kind an supportive words. You never fail to make me feel as if I know what I'm doing. ;) Thanks every so kindly, my friend. Happy 2010 to you and your lovely family. :)

• Thanks very much, Lynne. Happy 2010 to you and yours too. :)

• Valerie, I'm so glad you enjoyed the photos and post. You're too kind. Thank you so much for such a sweet sentiment. Happy New Year to you and yours. Here's hoping it a beauty for you. :)

• Sandy, Happy New Year to you too. Your regular visits (and often generous revisits) are among my blogging highlights. You never fail to have a kind word to say and for that, I thank you, my friend. :)

• Lady Fi, thank you. I'm glad you enjoyed them. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Welcome, Ken and thanks for the kind words. Much appreciated. Happy 2010 to you, too. :)

• Rajesh, thanks very kindly. Happy New Year to you and yours also. :)

• Althea.. mni_! ;) Thank you, you world traveller, you! I'm glad you made it to Europe safe and sound. I hope one day you can test and prove your Canadian winter coping theory. Since you're in the sciences, I'm sure you'd feel compelled to do so. Have a great 2010, my sweet friend.

• Dave, thanks for the kind words and good wishes. You must be time traveling these days. I'll wish you a happy new year and a happy new decade, but new millennium is just pushing it! ;) Have a great 2010. :)

• Sandra, thank you so much for your always-kind and giving words. Thanks for your good wishes. I wish you and yours the very same in return. Happy 2010. :)

• Tabor, thank you so much. What a kind compliment that is - particularly coming from you whose outlook and photos are always insightful and beautiful. Thanks for stopping by to make me smile. :)

abb said...

Ever wonder how comforting your blog is to visit? This is just all kinds of wonderful!

P.S. - Those are the biggest dang burrs I've EVER seen! What's up with Canada's burrs? On steroids???

Zuzana said...

Beautiful pictures celebrating life at its best.;)

Hilary said...

• TSannie, we grow 'em big here in the great white north! Actually, Benny is probably just a much smaller dog than you realize. He fits into the palm of my hand. ;) Thanks for the always-kind words. :)

• Protege, thanks very much, my friend. :)

Kerri Farley said...

Sweet sweet pics of the baby! And of course - I LOVE Benny!!

Indrani said...

I loved the shots of the Baby very much Hilary.

Hilary said...

• Thanks kindly, Kerri. Benny is difficult to resist. :)

• Thank you, Indrani. Much appreciated. Good to see you. :)

~JarieLyn~ said...

Hilary, you always make me smile. Your words, your photos, they give me such pleasure. That Benny, his adventures make me laugh out loud. I am so glad you write this blog. I enjoy it so much.

Hilary said...

• JarieLyn, that's such a nice thing to say. Thank you so much for that. You sure know how to make someone smile. :)