LIfe at High Altitude in Colorado

May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.

-Edward Abbey, naturalist and author (1927-1989)

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Renewal in Solitude

I crave solitude.
Alone in the forest or by water,
I feel renewed.

my ski trail through the forest

On my old touring skis, I was having difficulty getting up after falling.
I'm not supposed to strain and struggle because of my heart.
Remember - I did tear my artery by floundering in deep snow.
I recently bought new touring skis that I can get into and out of easily.
I've been venturing into the forest alone once again.
It's wonderful having the freedom to explore by myself.

can you hear the quiet?

I understand that I can have it both ways.
I have a husband who is my life partner/best friend.
I have an extended, loving family.
I have close relationships with dependable friends.

But, I also enjoy precious interludes of solitude.
Are you satisfied with your own company?
Do you enjoy being alone?

Tenmile Range in winter

(iPhone 5 photos edited with Waterlogue - my new favorite app.)


Nancy J said...

Solitude, at home, in the forest, by the water or in the snow, perfect. I am completely happy with my own company, and then again, I enjoy family , friends, and visitors also, a mixed combination of happiness. Your new app. is super, those ski tracks, leading to a quiet time by yourself. Enjoy it all Barb. Cheers from Jean

Carol Mattingly said...

Love what you did with your header and these gorgeous images. I love spending time alone and probably spend too much of it alone, but I am in sales and talking to many people all day long will do that to you. Have fun in those new shoes. Love to go on a quiet walk so you do it it for me Barb.

George said...

A lovely post, Barb, and I love those Waterlogue images. As for solitude, it's a necessity for me, not an option.

Anita said...

Your Waterlogue discovery is a good one!
As for solitude... love it! "Hearing the quiet" - Yes. I also like your use of the word "renewed." It is also what I feel after solitude which gives me energy for the "noise" of family, friends, the dog, the phone, etc. However, thank God for the noise, too!

Jeanie said...

Well, I LOVE being alone! I'm glad for Rick, glad for friends. But I love my solitude! And I especially love these fantastic "paintings" -- oh, you are painting, my friend. I think you should make GiANT enlargements of every single one of them and hang them in the best spot in the house. Or have notecards made by Shutterfly or They lift my soul!

Margie said...

Barb, love this post.
I love my times of solitude as during those times, my spirit is renewed.
I think we are kindred spirits as being near the water or forest is where I love to be.
We live on a lake and just looking at the water gives me such peace.

You are blessed 'to have it both ways'
Love what you did with your photos.

Olga said...

I have always enjoyed time alone. I have a bit too much of it lately, but I am making the adjustment.

Duff said...

I am blessed, too, by the joy of solitude. Many times friends have said that because I enjoy being with people that it seems out of character to spend as much time alone as I do....well, I love both and need both. I no longer make excuses for solitude. Wonderful post today, Barb. Thanks so much for letting us be part of your solo ski venture--after you came home. :-)

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

I love hanging around my family and friends but I live to get in the woods by myself.

diane b said...

You are doing magic things with that app. Love the pictures you have created. I t looks quiet and peaceful. I, too love to have time to myself. I usually walk in the forest, no snow in Queensland.I also love to spend time with my friends and family.

amanda | wildly simple said...

Solitude is key to my existence, too. It's a big part of me, having my space from the outer world, and enjoying it.
I also love that water color app! Such beautiful, serene images. The first one in the trees is my favorite.
I've been wishing my snowshoes came on & off easier - the buckles are so hard to manage when the leather straps are stiff & frozen, and fingers too.
I experience the same thing - it's hard to get up when I fall down. I'll often catch a toe of my snowshoe on a log that I don't know is under the snow - and there I go plunging face forward! I can get all tangled up. Not so bad with the modern aluminum ones, but my luck lately has been poor with the longer traditional Ojibwe shoes.

gina said...

I agree that it's good to find a balance between solitude and socializing. I too need solitude to renew and re-energize. Your images are lovely -- the waterlogue app is getting very popular.

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Barb, I was about to compliment you on your beautiful water coloring skills! All of these photos could be framed as art. I don't have an iPhone but I do have an iPad, so I'll have to download this app and play with it. I also enjoy solitude and can be quite happy occupying myself, especially if I have a good book to read!

Arija said...

Isn't it odd, we both have severe heart problems and both love to be alone in pristine wilderness. For me it also is very important to commune with nature to the point where I become at one with my surroundings and wild animals accept me as part of the natural landscape.
Love what you are doing with your new iPhone ap.

Cynthia said...

I need to have times of solitude to enjoy and appreciate the company of other people, and to be creative. I love being alone in places that make me feel very small-- in the big woods, by the sea.
Beautiful photos!

Arkansas Patti said...

What beautiful effects you have achieved. I am one of those who loves a crowd, a party, or a couple of friends but needs solitude to air out the mind. I rather like my own company.

Granny Annie said...

I bounce back and forth. Most often I crave solitude but there are times when suddenly I will crave friends. A few friends and not a mob. Crowds have never been my thing unless I am off in a corner observing. I can watch people like I can watch nature. Alone in a bus station or in the airport, observing people opens my imagination.

Jeanie said...

What a beautiful treatment of your photos. I agree that they look like paintings.
I do enjoy time alone though I am very grateful for family and friends to share much of my life with. I travel alone sometimes and have no problem with it.

Karen @ away for the weekend said...

Your photos of the forest solitude are gorgeous! I hope you were able to get up without too much trouble. I also have a wonderful husband who is my life partner, but still enjoy time alone with my own thoughts.

susanvg said...

I'll have to start experimenting more with apps. I have been more of a "what you see is what you get" person. I love what you have done with these photos. Glad to hear you have skis that give you back your freedom. Solitude is important as is company. We need to be able to enjoy both as each enriches the other.

Catherine said...

Oh Barb, the watercolor effect on your photos is just gorgeous... I'm transfixed by the first one (if you ever decide to sell it, please let me know :). I too crave solitude... I read that highly sensitive people regularly need quiet and alone time for rejuvenation. Nature is a wonderful source for this.

Lisa Wilson said...

Beautiful photos! It is good to be alone sometimes, especially outdoors.

Sandra said...

You've had such fun with post processing this time, giving a painterly effect!
I live on my own for most of my time, so it's easy to find solitude and I have learned to love it and appreciate it. However, when I want or need company, I have to make an effort of seeking it out. It's the opposite situation of those who are living with life partners. Most of my family is faraway. Luckily with computers and iPhones, frequent contact can be kept ... though of course it doesn't replace the physical presence of loved ones.

Lisa Gordon said...

I am so glad that you are able to do this again, Barb!
It looks like you have such a beautiful place to be out in.

I am VERY satisfied with my own company, and I definitely need a certain amount of "alone" time. Or I get cranky!! :-)

Happy day to you!

Deb @ Frugal Little Bungalow said...

Beautiful post / yes I enjoy being alone too :)

Cathy H. said...

Love the editing on these beautiful images! I, also love the peacefulness of being alone in the woods or near water!

The Cranky Crone, she lives alone! said...

Oh lovely effect Barb, I am on my own I would say 99% of the time! this mostly I find quite comfortable and suiting to me! although it's not completely out of choice.
When I do find myself in company now, I find myself trying to extricate myself after a few hours, even for a few minutes, it's what the mind and body get used to I have always found more than one other person to be exhausting, I have only ever needed one special person to be around, unfortunately he passed away, which left me pretty much lone. My good friends all live in other countries, which I decided must be the way I liked it.
My best times alone though are absolutely out in nature, especially the woods, it renews me and makes me feel that I know who I am.

ladyfi said...

Love the effect of that new app!

We all need solitude. Enjoy yours.

Annie @ knitsofacto said...

In the right places it is fabulous to be alone :)

Love the effect of this ap :D

Tomoko said...

Hi, Barb,
They are so pretty postcards! I love friends very much, but solitude is necessary to be myself. Sometimes I need that time.  
Have a wonderful weekend,Barb.

Kerri Farley said...

I LOVE my Solitude!!! and thanks for the tip on the app...just downloaded it!

Karen @ Pieces of Contentment said...

I also love solitude, although it can be difficult to come by. So refreshing to have time alone, in nature. Love your artistic photos - must go and explore Waterlogue.

KB Bear said...

Those are beautiful photos. I love the effects that you used.

I'm so glad that you can be out in the forest alone now. Like you, I like solitude. In fact, I most definitely fall into the "introvert" category, as I find that I need some solitude to recharge my spirit.

Enjoy the muffled quiet of the snowy forest.


Your water color effect is absolutely fabulous Traci!!! [Sorry, I couldn't your comment for me, you 'called' me Patti, so I thought I'd be a pain in the you know what and put Traci instead of Barb....let's just blame it on all that snow freezing your brain cells -- I call it HALF-heimerz! Not quite there to ALLSheimerz.]


Seriously, this makes beautiful artwork, I can see why it's your favorite app.

Tammie Lee said...

these truly look like watercolor paintings
i thought you were sharing a new passion and activity until i read your post
it is quite challenging to get up once we fall on our skis
and it warms you up fast too ~

lovely you are getting out and enjoy, i will do the same today with my friends pup
we will look at every track along the way ;-)

Kerry said...

Super cool watercolor-y effect made particularly beautiful by your good eye for composition. Wow!

I love wandering about on my own. It's how I re-charge.

HOOTIN ANNI said... worries!! I had a bit of fun with you.

Inger said...

What a lovely post and how I would love to be in the forest on skis. Solitude is very important to me.

Retired English Teacher said...

Like you, I need solitude. I don't like to feel isolated, but I like solitude. The "paintings' are just amazing. I absolutely love the top one and the bottom one. They are framable for sure!

Diane AZ said...

Beautiful watercolor photos! I enjoy living in my house full of family and activities, but I do relish nature walks by myself. :)

Jim said...

Thank you for sharing this Barb. The photos are absolutely inspiring. And yes, I can hear the quiet.

sophie...^5 said...

This app is unreal, so beautiful. Since I'm not iPhone anything I'll just feel content by viewing your stunning work, Barb!

Thanks for this offering and please be careful, out in the wilds by yourself!!

But I do know what you mean by solitude ~~~ so beneficial for the healing of your soul and body!!!


becky said...

Barb, your post speaks to my heart! Between work & clay class.... it seems I very rarely have solitude & it seems I am quite grouchy lately!! Time to get back out in the mountains.... thank you for the reminder. :) Hope you are doing well & forgive my lack of blogging & checking in on your posts!
Amazing what technology can do.... your photographs are always amazing- this app truly looks like you painted these!

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Yes absolutely... I could have written this post (if I were as brilliant a writer as you are)... And of course I have different ways to experience solitude, since there's very little chance to ski here in Florida ... but experience it I do ... and must for the good of my spirit.

stardust said...

Hello, again! I enjoy solitude, too, and I think the time of being alone is enhanced by the existence of my family and friends.


DeniseinVA said...

Hi Barb, first of all, I wanted to thank you for sharing the Waterlogue app. I saw a post that Karen did, immediately downloaded it on my IPad and have been having a blast. So much fun! Your renditions are gorgeous! I thought about your question and can truthfully say I am very comfortable with my own company. It is good for the soul I think to find time for oneself occasionally.