Away We Go!

Cheese fondue and a movie at home were our efforts at making the evening a special one. And it was. We've gone to parties in the past, and enjoyed them immensely, but this year, staying home was most attractive. We stayed up to see the New Year in, then headed off to dreamland.

This morning, after breakfast with our Vancouver-based kids who stayed with us for the past few nights, we puttered around the house. A mid-afternoon walk to Tod Inlet resulted in the photos in this post. 

By 2:30 the sun slanted low and filtered through the trees.

Although the turning of the year is an artificial construct, purely for humankind's benefit, it signals the passing of time, and I find it useful for both looking back and looking ahead.

My sweet husband gave me a macro lens for Christmas. I'm having fun (and a bit of frustration) learning how to use it. The photo above captures much of what I love about January: quiet, soft colors, a bit of moodiness.

Tod Inlet used to be used by the Butchart family (of Butchart Gardens) as the loading area for shipping the cement from the quarry and factory. These pilings are remnants of a once-busy small port.

This week has been clear and cold enough that ice formed on the water. Only the birds are light enough to stand on it. 

Another macro shot. The focused area is quite small and I'm looking forward to a lot of practice with this new lens. 

A creek flows into the inlet and runs along the trail from the road. Ferns grow on the forest floor and moss drips from the trees. These mossy branches remind me of a long-legged bug of some sort. 

The house is quiet now with our visitors gone. I took down the tree and Christmas decorations so that I'm ready for school to begin again on Monday. Has it really been two weeks already?

Neil Gaiman has written some wonderful New Year's wishes. Here's one of my favorites, that I send to each one of you in hope for 2016.

"May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness.I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you're wonderful, and don't forget to make some art - write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year, you surprise yourself."  


  1. Lovely wishes! Your doing well with your new lens! We spent a real low key eve and New Year's day...

  2. Beautiful. Hapoy New Year. Such lovely sentiments in the quote.

  3. Have fun with the photography and the macro lens. The final photo looks like a creature scrambling away from you. I don't want to see his face. The days must seem so quiet now that the holiday company has gone. Have a lovely weekend as you gear up for a return to teaching. It won't be long before winter vacation will arrive.

  4. Love your new year wish! Good madness and surprising yourself. I like your new header too. I have a bunch of those air envelopes -- a thing of the past or almost.

  5. as only you can. I like that thought and thank you for sharing it with us. I am not familiar with Neil Gaiman, but will head over to "meet" him.
    What a nice gift from your husband. Your photos are always beautiful. Now I can imagine we are in for an even bigger treat as you get to know your new lens.
    Happy New Year, Lorrie.

  6. The perfect end to the year! Your pictures are lovely. I've wanted a macro lens but keep nudging myself to get 'better acquainted' with my camera first! Ha!

    We spent our New Years Eve very quietly as well, I simply can't remember the last time we were at a party.
    Happy New Year to you, my new friend!

    Jane x

  7. Happy New Year, Lorrie! What a lovely post and I loved that quote!

  8. Lovely post - lovely photographs and lovely memories. I think your mossy tree looks like a grasshopper heading into the woods. Enjoy your macro - all my macros are done with my little pink ride-in-my-pocket Canon - it really does well on the macro setting. I got more frost pictures today - similar to what you have in the collage. This cold weather is great for frost - ours hasn't melted in several days and is getting very "tall". Happy New Year!!

  9. What a beautiful post as well as your New Years wishes. The photos are great. I can only imagine what fun you are going to have with your macro lens. That is a nice gift! Years ago I had a camera with different lenses. Now, I mostly "point and shoot". I think Buchart Gardens are fabulous! A girlfriend and I took a trip to Victoria (from California) years ago. Went to afternoon Tea and toured the area. I enjoyed your informative comments about the gardens. I am glad I found your blog. Thanks.

  10. Oh how you will enjoy the macro. I don't have one. Wish I did. I look forward to seeing wha you do with it. Great photos in your future. You are one step ahead of me with your Christmas packed away for another year. I probably won't get to it until Sunday. We are still in the deep freeze here. No more snow in the near future and we we would sure like it to warm up some, too. Thank you for the kind New Year's wishes. My aim and desire is always for continued good health. Enjoy your lens.

  11. Thank you for the frost-decorated nature scenes - I like to enjoy them after I've come back into the warm house! And the greeting from Gaiman makes me realize that I already have surprised myself in a good way, and it's only the first day of the year - so that was encouraging. God bless you and your family in 2016!

  12. Wonderful photos, Lorrie! I'm already looking forward to seeing your macro photos when spring arrives.
    You seem to have much green even now. We have mainly shades of brown and grey. I would so much like to receive some snow that would protect the more delicate plants...
    Wishing you and your loved ones a very happy new year!

  13. Happy new year to you Lorrie. I always enjoy seeing your photos, but what a differences your new lens makes.
    I look forward to seeing the forthcoming photos I hope you will be sharing with us. i think my brain has slowed down to grasp the technical info, I think I'll have to stay with my aim and shoot. I like the quote you chose .

  14. Dear Lorrie
    Wishing you and your family a year of happiness and joy!
    You are making great images with your new lens - well done!
    I have longed for a great camera and lens that I can take long distance photos with clarity!
    Maybe this year if I'm very good Santa might treat me to one, ha ha!
    Thank you for introducing me to Neil Gaiman - what beautiful writing.
    I'm looking for to another year of visiting and reading your interesting and thought provoking posts on Fabric Paper Thread.
    Shane x

  15. What a lovely thought, to surprise oneself!
    Your photos are as always, beautiful, particularly ones with water in, so clear.

  16. I love the quote so much..very sweet wish.
    Happy new year xx

  17. Lovely photos as always!

    Happy New Year Lorrie! I like the quote you shared!


  18. Thank you for stopping by yesterday. I live the photo of the pickings but all the shots you've shared are interestingly beautiful. The quote is definitely one to remember. Happy new year!

  19. Beautiful snapshots, Lorrie...I like seeing your world through your (new) camera lens!

    Sending ~~HEALTHY HAPPY NEW YEAR~~ wishes your way.

  20. I liked the New year quotation, very original!
    That toadstool picture is soooood delicate.... spot-on! You will give us all
    Enjoyment with your gift, harnessed to a very good eye for detail and beauty that you already had. Your post has a steely grey, licheny colour theme to it as a whole.
    (I don't think 'licheny' would get through on the Scrabble board ; ))
    Happy Days!

  21. Anonymous10:46 AM

    The photos are stunning especially the one of the reclining bug or whatever. I can picture a long legged thing laid out there taking a break and enjoying nature. Thanks also for the wonderful quote. Hope you have a great second semester. :-)

  22. A beautifully photographed start to the year! Happy New Year! xx

  23. Just beautiful photos Lorrie. I love the magical quality in them. You're the second blogger today I've read to quote Neil Gaiman. I've not heard of him, but both quotes are beautiful.
    The pretty skirts you made and showed in a previous post must have been a delight to your grandchildren. So much fun for you all to dance in the Christmas light.
    Happy New Year to you, and I look forward to many blog visits in 2016. xo Deborah

  24. Anonymous5:05 PM

    Lorrie, love your pictures. Your description of January is spot on. My favorite picture is the one of the remnant pilings at the port. Beautiful. Love the quote too!

  25. Have fun with your macro lens, it's very gratifying to capture something in focus with it. Here's to a new year of blogging, photography and enjoying what comes our way.

  26. The Neil Gaiman quote made me smile. Great pic's! Have fun with the new lens. :)

  27. Great photos and I bet you will have lots of fun experimenting with your new lens! Happy Happy New Year to you!!

  28. You are having fun experimenting with your new lens (what a wonderful gift!) and I am going to have fun seeing the results! Your first efforts are amazing!

    Happy New Year to you and yours!

  29. Sometimes I get a macro look with photos I take with my phone, purely by accident of course, but looks lovely to have that single focus and everything sort of blurred in the background. The close up of the frost is amazing! Happy new year!

  30. If anyone deserves a new lens, it's you, Lorrie, with your aptitude for composition! Lucky for us!

  31. Happy New Year, Lorrie! I also can't believe how fast the last 2 weeks flew. Thank you for sharing the beautiful Neil Gaiman wishes.


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