A Happy Ending

 

crooked-tree

One of the things I love about our farm is the abundance of trees of various kinds and character. Among my favourites, this beautiful old maple I call “The Crooked Tree.” The shape of this tree alone seems against the odds, but let us continue …

On March 27, 2016 our area of central Ontario endured a 24-hour ice storm. Sadly, the big, old, crooked maple and its long-time partner across the lane (along with many others about the property) couldn’t take the stress of the one-inch ice accretion upon its limbs and broke down.

broken

It broke my heart to see such a beautiful tree meet such an unhappy end.

hope

It was so mangled that it seemed to cut it down was the obvious choice. And then we wondered about having a local sculptor come in to carve a rearing, defiant horse into it. You know, symbolic of rising above the situation.

In the end, and after much soul searching and upon finding sappy evidence that the tree, despite its terrible wound, was very much alive, we opted to give it another chance. We had an arborist make a diagonal cut across the tree from just above the shoot where the orange string is in the above image, hoping that perhaps this bit of assistance might help it to rise again.

resilience

And believe it or not, against all odds this crooked old tree has actually found a way to thrive.

It would have been so easy to right off this broken down and battered old maple. I’m glad we didn’t. Now I look at it as a testament to the resilience of both nature and the human spirit.

We are never so broken that we cannot rise again with the right support and love around us. We are how we choose to respond to the slings and arrows of life. We either endure in strength, or we allow ourselves to be defeated.

a-new-leaf

The scars become a testament to our character and provide an unexpected beauty all their own.

I love happy endings.

Thanks for visiting …

Dorothy

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©Dorothy Chiotti … All Rights Reserved 2017

Weekly Photo Challenge: Against the Odds

The Magic Season

Weekly Photo Challenge: Seasons

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Watercolour

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This is my magic season.

The autumn of my life.

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Fence Sitting

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My glory years.

Vibrant.

Full of colour.

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Fruit of the Vine

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Fruitful.

A little wilted around the edges, perhaps, yet glorious.

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Looking for Sheep

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At peace with my past, and aware of life’s infinite possibilities, I manifest dreams.

Finally, I’m free to be myself.

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Maple Magic

Let the magic season unfold.

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Thanks for visiting …

Dorothy

©Dorothy Chiotti … All Rights Reserved 2016

QWERTY

Alphabet II

Weekly Photo Challenge: Alphabet

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This image speaks to the writer in me.

Every letter of the alphabet is represented in this old word processor, which is only a few decades removed from the model I learned to type on way back when.

Carbon copies and triplicate, white out and erasers.

“Those were the days,” she sighed with a hint of sarcasm.

Image captured at Heritage Park in Calgary, Alberta.

Thanks for stopping by …

Dorothy

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©Dorothy Chiotti … All Rights Reserved 2016

Day’s End

Light

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Mother Earth

Blanketed in warm embrace

Of setting sun.

Another day is done.

Father Moon

Singing silent lullaby;

A chorus of emerging stars

Twinkling their

“Good night …”

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Thanks for visiting …

Dorothy

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©Dorothy Chiotti … Aimwell CreativeWorks 2015 

Toward the Light

Weekly Photo Challenge: Shadowed

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Meditation 2

Yesterday afternoon, following a treatment of shockwave therapy to Bear’s recently injured right hind lateral suspensory ligament (in human terms a badly sprained ankle), I found him standing quietly facing the back of his stall. The light from the window reflected so perfectly on his noble face, and the shadowing was so beautifully dramatic, that I grabbed my Nikon D70, which I’ll be using a lot over the next four months while I document his recovery, and captured this moment of serenity. I did so carefully so as not to disturb his quiet reverie.

The vet diagnosed his injury by ultrasound earlier this week and, needless to say, it’s taken a few days for me to find my equilibrium after such terrible news. This is serious requiring 24/7 stall rest, twice-daily hand walking and daily bandaging. I want to give him every opportunity to fully recover so will do everything I can to help make him comfortable and keep him amused. Fortunately he is in the care of a knowledgeable and enlightened horse woman, so I know he will be getting the best of care. This makes all the difference to my peace of mind on the matter.

So, for the winter months Bear and I are truly dormant.

Still, this quietude gives us lots of time to contemplate the next leg of our journey, and as long as we keep looking toward the light this shadow we are living under cannot last forever.

Thanks for visiting,

Dorothy

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©Dorothy Chiotti … Aimwell CreativeWorks 2015

Bear Adoption

Monochrome Madness: Week 33

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Sweet Dreams

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I’m a collector of collectible teddy bears and have been for a number of years.

My relationship with teddy bears began, of course, in my childhood. As a little girl growing up in a broken home it was my Yogi Bear I squeezed at night to help me off to sleep.

After the family dog sent him to a premature grave I adopted another bear and this cycle repeated itself for years.

I’ve lost all of those childhood friends and in recent years have adopted the collectible ones to satisfy the little girl in me who still loves bears.

Yes, I even gave my horse Shakespeare the nickname “Bear.”

I’ve tried to let the bears go. I really have.

In fact, just about six weeks ago I looked at the various small congregations gathering around our home and thought it must be time to say goodbye; to find them another home. I estimate there are about 12 in my office, including Nutmeg and his small companion in the image posted here, and as many in at least three other rooms.

Within a day of that thought I dreamt about rescuing a teddy bear from a mud puddle.

I guess they need me.

Do you still have a treasured teddy bear living in your home?

Thanks for visiting …

Dorothy

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©Dorothy Chiotti … Aimwell CreativeWorks 2014 

Waiting

 

Waiting

 

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My submission to Leanne Cole’s Monochrome Madness Week 27 takes us to sunny Spruce Meadows just south of Calgary, Alberta.

These children waiting with anticipation for the next horse and rider to appear for a big show jumping class in the main grandstand remind me of when I was a little girl with an insatiable passion for horses.

I started riding lessons at age 10 at a stable in north London, England. When I wasn’t at the stable I was reading horse books, leafing through the Moss Bros. equipment catalogue ad nauseum, making copious lists of horse names and colours and temperaments, and playing show jumping in the back yard with my best friend, pretending we were horses and launching ourselves over home made obstacles constructed from brooms and buckets and anything else we could find that would serve.

And certainly, I was daydreaming of having a horse to call my own one day ~ one I would keep in the shed in the back yard and gallop around the local park. 😉 (I had to wait 33 years for my dream to come true ~ minus the shed, etc. See my blog Musings of a Horse Mom for more about my experiences with my darling Shakespeare aka Bear.)

In the summer I would watch televised broadcasts from Hickstead ~ the main outdoor venue in England for the big show jumping events at the time (it still is, I think). In the fall I’d get special permission to stay up late the week the Horse of the Year show which, at the time was televised from Wembley Arena, not far from where we lived.

Occasionally, I even got to go. Oh the sights, the sounds, the smells … pure heaven!

I lived for the thrill of just seeing a horse (when I wasn’t at the stable) and being with the horses when I was there.

During the roller coaster of life I’ve fallen off the equestrian wagon a few times and had no contact with horses at all. It can safely be said that those were among the most miserable times for me. Separated from my passion I was denied an important part of my Self.

Official Portrait 2013A death in the family 20 years ago brought me back to the horse and, as it turns out, this free-spirited animal in all its beauty and wisdom has proven to be a catalyst for positive change and an important partner in my healing journey.

And it’s all because I was a little girl with a passion for horses.

Thanks for visiting,

Dorothy

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©Dorothy Chiotti … Aimwell CreativeWorks 2014