Earth Day 2022

Bow, WA:
A no car day. Walked to the post office and saw tulips and blossoms and green growing things, and red-winged blackbirds flitting among tall stalks. Picked up my mail. Had a scone and mocha at the bakery across from the post office – sat at a little table and felt my body soaking up the friendly warmth from the sun. Finished my scone, hitched my backpack back over my shoulders and started the hike home. Birds singing and people waving and smiling as they drove past me. Collected some cans and plastic lying on the side of the road – thought that seemed like an appropriate thing to do on Earth Day. And then came home and pulled up weeds and spruced up my garden a little. Finished Season 2 of “Stranger Things.”

It has been a lovely day.
-Karen Molenaar Terrell

“EARTH.  A sphere; a type of eternity and immortality, which are likewise without beginning or end…To material sense, earth is matter; to spiritual sense, it is a compound idea.
– Mary Baker Eddy

For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.” 
– Isaiah 55: 12

Earth Day (Wordle Poem #4 with Photos)

Earth
green brown
parks towns
river ocean trees field
prays world heals
cedar pines aspen alder birch
spring water = earth juice
snowy sunny rainy magic
windy fiery fires smoke
roots trunk cloud
fumes noise crowd
dried woods
polar melts
brace storm fears
earth cries tears
prism cloud after
child laugh
rouge boots splash
seize trash
hikes trail
climb
plays
hopes
birth
human being
Mamma Earth
-Karen Molenaar Terrell

(All photos by Karen Molenaar Terrell.)

Photo by Karen Molenaar Terrell.

Reconnecting With an Old Friend

I reconnected with my old friend this week.
I ran out to greet her
and she leaped and raced towards me
and splashed around my ankles
in a playful game of tag.
She offered me agates and rain clouds
and sunsets and new friends.
And the last morning she gifted me
a rainbow – a gentle and beautiful parting.
“Good bye, dear friend. Until we meet again.”
-Karen Molenaar Terrell

(Photos by Karen Molenaar Terrell. Lincoln City, Oregon.)

Treasure Hunting in Lincoln City

My husband and I first came to Lincoln City, Oregon, 38 years ago on our honeymoon. With just a few exceptions, we’ve managed to make it back every year since then. There are constants here, and there are also changes. We still look for agates. I still take my traditional run on the beach (although I’m slower and don’t go near as far as I did 38 years ago). The ocean still reaches out to play with me and offer me her gifts. She still helps me put all my human distresses in perspective. I guess the ocean hasn’t changed so much – the changes have been mostly in the humans who visit her.

As I do every time I come here, I searched for treasure – agates, and new friends, and renewal. I ran into other treasure-hunters, too: There was Doug with his metal detector, scouring the sand for traces of gold and silver (he said he’d found three rings in the last week!); there was the lady from Salem, Oregon, looking for sea glass; there was the couple from Mount Vernon, Washington (15 minutes from where we live!), looking for rocks of different colors to make a map of the United States; there was the local woman who was looking for rocks of different patterns to use in her smudging ceremonies; there was Allen looking for the treasure of a good wind to sail his kite; there was Blanca looking for rocks with red in them; and there were the pups, Ryley and Reggie, looking for sticks and friendly people and things with interesting smells.

The agates glowed up at me from their pebbly beds – it’s always such a joy to find them – these gifts from the ocean. One big blue agate literally leaped out of a wave and landed at my feet. It was like he was saying, “Here I am! Here I am!” That was pretty fun.

“To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower 
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand 
And Eternity in an hour…”
-William Blake

The Great Horned Owlet Adventure

My former student and one of my favorite people in the world, Austin Breckenridge, invited me to watch a pair of great horned owlets getting tagged yesterday by biologist Jeff Kidd. What an amazing gift! Here are some photos from The Great Owlet Adventure. (Skagit County, Washington.)

(Photos by Karen Molenaar Terrell.)

Of Snow Geese, Unitarian-Universalists, and a Son to Laugh With

March 30, 2022

What a remarkable day.

I didn’t start off with big plans. But a call from the youngest son brought me to Padilla Bay Interpretive Center to go for a quick walk with him while he waited for his car to charge up at the charging station there. Xander is such a hoot. We share the same sense of humor about things and spent a lot of our time together laughing at life.

On our walk we came upon some of my friends from the Skagit Unitarian Universalist Fellowship – it was such a joy to see them again! It’s been so long! It was a year ago on Mother’s Day that I last joined them for a zoom meeting to share stories about my mom. It’s been years since I’d seen them in the person!

I’d just gotten home and eaten some lunch when I got a call from my friend, Teresa, with a tip that there was a mega flock of “big white birds” near Conway. Teresa didn’t know what the birds were, for sure, but her instincts told her these birds were special. “Are they really loud?” I asked. And Teresa confirmed they were. “I think we’ve got snow geese,” I told her. This was very cool for me because I know the snow geese are about to make their northerly migration to the Arctic and I’m not sure how much longer we’ll have them here with us.

I grabbed my camera and headed towards Conway. It wasn’t hard to find the snow geese – there were thousands of them! And I could see them filling the skies from a mile away. They put on a spectacular show today. I’m so glad I got to be witness to their celebration.

Here’s a link to the Youtube video of the snow geese extravaganza I witnessed.

Pictures below…

Favorite Photos of 2021

I know. We’re already two months into 2022, but better late than never, right?
Here are some of my favorite photos from 2021: autumn in Bellingham; seal on the Oregon coast; hawk on the tree outside our window; sunrise in Skagit County, WA; a gladiola gift from a friend; snow geese near Bow, WA; flipped reflection of Skagit Valley daffodils; a couple of photos from Neskowin on the Oregon coast; Mount Rainier; an owl in our tree; and otters scrambling on a rock in Bellingham, WA.
(Photos by Karen Molenaar Terrell.)