It’s officially the weekend, and it’s time to soak up the goodness in your own backyard! I love seeing breathtaking places and being outside more than most things, but there are a lot of weekends where traveling isn’t possible, practical or the even the best thing. Finding new locations to shoot seems easier when there are gorgeous mountain roads and quiet riverbanks all around, but these locations don’t challenge you to see some redeeming qualities in the most ordinary or unexpected places.
They offer perfect shots, the ones that are harder to mess up and require less effort. And sometimes what we need more than anything is rest, simplicity, quiet living and home. Because when we’re in the most familiar places, we have the challenge of being grateful and seeing fresh beauty in the midst of what we often perceive as regular. And, that’s where your very own backyard becomes important. Instead of trying to offer you tips to transform your home or life into an oasis, I want to challenge you to look for the new and fresh beauty that already exists. To be grateful for and capture what you already see.
Florida’s Best Backyard Charms
This year, I found an orange tree and a grapefruit tree in the backyard of my sister’s new house. Our dog, Kona, loves running around in circles and almost knocking over the heavy metal grill on the brick patio. And, if you walk far enough into the trees, there is a broken, ivy covered, tree house and three different kinds of fencing outlining the yard. At first glance, it’s kind of a mess.
We could clean it up, organize it a little bit, but what I’ve found is that there’s something simple and relaxing in looking for something good among the ordinary and broken things. When we start to meet beauty right where it’s at, we have a much better foundation to start the hard work of restoration. But, for today, I’m appreciating the gorgeous grove of oranges with bright fruit near the fence. The way the sunlight slips through the ivy and weeds, through the splintered wood, and rests on each step of the old, oak ladder to the treehouse. I even love the little chicken that the previous owner abandoned with its old, rusted coupe.
I know that there are always projects and dreams for spaces like this, but I think before we start any project, set out on a new adventure, or explore the world and all its beautiful places, we have to learn the beauty of the present state of things. So, what’s your backyard like today?
Whether you’re dreaming up improvements or longing to explore far away places, stop for a minute, smell the fresh oranges, enjoy outside and adventure to someplace familiar. That’s where you’ll find the true challenge of living in the present, pursuing gratitude and seeing the beauty in the people and the places all around you. And, who knows? You might even end up with a glass of hand picked, fresh squeezed orange juice from your own backyard.
THE GOLDEN KATE CO. FRESH SQUEEZED ORANGE JUICE
2 TBS. HONEY
4 FRESH MINT LEAVES
Cut room temperature oranges in halves and squeeze into a pitcher. Use a strainer to removes seeds. Add 2 tablespoons of clover or orange blossom honey and 4 fresh mint leaves. Stir well. Serve with ice for best results.