The details

You know that old saw about stopping to smell the roses? Photography can be something like that, except you lean in with your lens, absorbing all the details. Suddenly there appear all those wonderful bits of life and texture that on regular day are as invisible as the quantum world.

The dandelion’s tale

Dandelions always remind me of my mother. It’s not just because yellow was her favorite color. The dandelion was a symbol of her cross-cultural learnings.

She grew up in Bangkok surrounded by a stunning array of wildly colored tropical flowers and plants of all sorts. In the 1950s, she had earned a fellowship to study nursing in England. It would be her first time spending an extended period of time away from home and her very large family.

London was a world away and homesickness bubbled under the surface. One drab spring day, she saw a blazing  yellow beacon in the grass — a floral reminder of home.  She bent down and promptly turned it into a boutonniere. She walked along near Russell Square with a smile as bright as the dandelion in her jacket lapel.

“Excuse me ma’am,” a bobby  said with a little smile. “Do you know you’re wearing a weed?”

“A weed?” mom asked.

“A weed,” he said.

Mom just smiled and said:  “It’s beautiful no matter what it’s called.”

Can’t argue with that.

Dandelion in the sun.
Bright rays and curls of a dandelion in the sun.





Winter vs. Spring. Round 3

And the winner is … Spring!

Arkansas did have one more round of snow on St. Patrick’s Day, with enough ice and snow to cause a 10- to 15-car pileup that shut down I-630 during the morning commute. However, Spring has gotten down to business and has taken the state in its firm grip.

Violets grow on a rocky Ouachita mountain slope.
White tree blossoms.
Beautiful blossoms, but the tree is a mystery.
Robin in nest.
Mama robin minds her nest in a tulip tree at the office.


Weekly photo challenge: Beginning


This week’s photo challenge, “beginning,” is an excellent way to start the year. Our entry represents the beginning of a new cycle for our native dogwood trees. These buds are just awaiting spring’s arrival. (The beginning of spring seems like a long way away when the wind chill is in the single digits. Brrrrr.)

Dogwood buds ready for the beginning of spring.
Dogwood buds ready for the beginning of spring.

Other beginnings we liked this week: