Blog: Midwest & The Rest

Photography, experiences, and essays about conservation, restoration, ecology, and all things nature in the Midwest and the rest of the world!

Faith for overcoming obstacles

"...The trials of winter are unavoidable if we wish to soar into a brilliant springtime based on faith." - Teachings of Nichiren Daishonin - 

winter versus spring

Using weights whilst exercising, resistance can build muscles. This logic when applied to our daily lives and characters means that hardships, struggles, and traumatic experiences can fortify wisdom, compassion, and courage.

I have been absent from sharing my thoughts and pictures since December, for I have been dealing with my fair share of burdens. Most notably before the holidays, someone broke into my Jeep by shattering a window and stealing my backpack that included prized books; lettering materials; journal filled with contacts, meticulous notes, and recordings of phenological events; as well as my laptop. 

Though I took the loss in stride, I found myself having difficulties maintaining creativity and passion with my storytelling and advocacy. I took some time to reflect, I took other times to simply live. After a few more untimely struggles, I have taken the initiative to strengthen my character and daily lifestyle.

What follows are photographs that I have taken whilst working in the woods, adventuring with my significant other, ice fishing in Minnesota, volunteering with a my first bird count, and more. 

I hope that the lack of background and details will prompt you to reflect, not only on the photograph, but more so on happenings in your lives. 

Regardless of what yesterday brought, today brings anew, and I encourage you to take any trials in stride, so to strengthen body, mind, and spirit for the blossoms that will follow.


waterfall frost
the smoke it rises
a drink
charred logs
preparing the ice rink to play
fish and beer bring us together