Thursday, January 14, 2010

Things that make me happy... part 1


As I was looking around my favorite blogs the other day I popped over to visit Debbie at My Shabby Roses. She did a post about things that made her smile, and it inspired me to do a series of posts that I will call "Things that make me happy".

I think one of the things that brings me the most joy, is being out in nature. Of course I'm kinda particular about what kind of nature... (the desert is definitely out!) I like being among the trees, I love rivers and streams, and waterfalls. My sweetie and I used to go camping with my son all the time when we were first married. We traveled all over the state of Arizona. (It's really woodsy up north) We also picked spots where there were lots of trees and some kind of water. Unfortunately, we haven't been camping in quite a few years now, but I would go again in a heartbeat. What we HAVE been able to do (and I am very grateful) is take some pretty awesome vacations these past 3 years. The first two pictures are from the most recent trip to Redwood National Forest. When I say it is awe inspiring I mean it. If you get a chance to go I highly recommend it.



There is something so peaceful about being in the woods. I love the sounds of the wind through the trees, the birds chirping, and if I'm lucky, the sound of running water. When I'm there I never want to leave.

These two photos were taken during a vacation to Hawaii. The beaches were great, the snorkeling was probably the coolest thing I've ever done, but I didn't find my true happy place until we hiked into the forest/jungle. Green ferns and water everywhere. Plants that I have growing in pots in my home... with leaves the size of tires!! It was fantastic!

But of the last three vacations, we have taken my favorite by far was when we went to Tennessee. We rented a car, and just drove all over the Eastern half of the state. This has to be what heaven is going to be like for me when I get there.






Smokie Mountain National Park. I truly have never been in a more beautiful place. It's hard to describe the feeling that comes over me when I am surrounded by such beauty. Many of you may not be able to relate because you are surround by this type of scenery every day. But because it is a rare event for me, I cherish each and every minute I have in these amazing places.



This is my favorite photo I have ever taken. It is the wallpaper on my computer. When I look at it it brings me right back to that place. It captured that place so perfectly. When I was there, my heart beat a little faster, my breathing slowed to deeply inhale the smell of the air. Peace enveloped me. It is as close to God as I have ever felt. I was in my happy place.

23 comments:

Rustique Gallery said...

Oh Karen, what lovely pictures! I live in Western Massaachusetts and love the green lush woods too. But I did live in Colorado for 20 years and fell in love with the desert places. The beauty of Utah and New Mexico-I just vow to keep traveling. I love the look of your blog and will enjoy following! Hugs, Sherry

Connie said...

Redwoods are definitely my favorite place to be. Hubby and I would go up there a lot just to walk through those forests. Just beautiful! So I know what you mean, sugar.
xoxo,
Connie

BellaRosa said...

Karen, you & your posts have been missed :) I love these beautiful pictures of the places that make you happy...I can definately understand why...Every year since I was 11 we went up North in Ca. to Lone Pine,Bishop,Bridgeport and all the other towns along the way, but to me the most beautiful was Bridgeport because it was up so high in the mountains and felt like heaven..My dad bought these places into our lives and now that he is gone, we plan on all of us going back up there and camp at our favorite spots, right next to the creek and up high in the mountain where at night all you could see was dark nothingness till you looked up at the sky and saw the stars and all their beauty..thank you so much for bringing me back these memories, that picture you have of the water rushing under that bridge looks just like where we go in Bridgeport :) Besos, Rose

Ps...for the short time we lived in Tucson, we fell in love with Mt. Lemon...so like Northern Ca :)

ceekay said...

Hi Karen....I thought about our trip to Hawaii and snorkling...one of the most exciting things I have ever done! I love the rolling hills of Kentucky....and Pennslyvania is gorgeous too...we love though to go to Payson....reminds me of home in Michigan....but I guess I have been in the desert too long...I even like the mountains here, especially during wild flower season.

Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions said...

Beautiful pictures, Karen! You've obviously enjoyed these vacations. Nice idea to put your favorite picture as your computer wallpaper ~ this way you can see it every day!

Linda K. said...

These are lovely photos, Karen, and I savored each one. I know what you mean about being out in nature. There is nothing else like it on earth. Hearing water flow down a river over rocks, slapping. Leaves rustle, light breezes lightly whipping through long grass. I could hear and smell woodsy fragrance when you were describing your adventure! What fun! Thanks.

Linda

Charlene said...

Your "Happy Place" is beautiful!!!!
I can almost hear you smiling as you gaze out. LOVE the waterfall photo! I got your sweet email & I am not ignoring you just COVERED UP. Hope to get back with you mid week next week. I am at a jewelry design class this weekend. I can't wiat to visit in person. Thank you for sharing such beauty with us! HUGS! Charlene

T's Daily Treasures said...

This is definitely my happy place too but don't get any of it in Kuwait -- only when we travel or go home for the summer. I dream of it the rest of the year. :) Blessings, Tammy

Mary Ann Miller said...

Karen, I really enjoyed the pictures today. We live in a beautiful world, don't we? Thanks for sharing.

Crystal Rose Cottage said...

Hi Karen....I love the Smokies too and like to go whenever we get the chance! Luckily we are in driving distance. The furthest west I have ever gone is in South Texas on the Rio Grande. Actually, we lived there for a year. Where you live in Arizona would be a whole new adventure for me. There are so many beautiful places in the world and so many right here in our own country!~Patti

June said...

Karen I love this post. I know what you mean about the feeling you get in nature. I do live in this kind of nature every day but I NEVER take it for granted. It always awes me to be in it. Your photos are stunning. I am looking forward to hearing about everything that makes you happy.
hugs

sissie said...

Hi Karen,
It's good to see you are back. I've missed seeing your posts.
Your photos and vacation spots are all so beautiful. I enjoyed reading your thoughts on why you love those places so much.

Grace Peterson said...

Hi Karen~~ Thought I'd give you a visit. Beautiful photos. If I didn't know better I'd say they were depictions of my beloved western Oregon. The forest is just five minutes away from us [by car] but I never get tired of it. The fresh air and the lack of man made noise is the best kind of therapy. Grace

The Rustic Victorian said...

It is nice to be able to experience this beautiful country, each state has such beauty and I have withdrawls if I don't at least go to the park regularly. Wonderful photos, I am close to TN and have been in the mountians, but not nearly enough,,never enough. I think AZ is nice up north. I am inspired to go out and about today now,,thanks.
Good Post!
Marcie

CeCe said...

And Happy is the best place to be in the whole wide world. I lived in Tennessee for years and all over the south there are places of beauty as you show in the photographs. I love visiting there again--but--I only want to visit--for in the winter it is grey and cloudy--and grey and cloudy is not my happy place. Up here in Pinetop, AZ the sun shines even though it is cold during the winter. It is what I love about this beautiful state of ours. The terrain is so different all over the state. This is something most people do not realize. Can't wait to see more of your Happy!

Sonia said...

Truly beautiful! I love your blog so much, I,m now a follower!

tarnishedandtattered.blogsot.com said...

Wow Karen, some beautiful pictures! You've been to some amazing places. K & I also were big traveler/campers before kiddo's. Speaking of AZ, we camped in Sedona three times. That may have been the best camping we ever did. Right behind our tent was a stream with a rope swing & the most beautiful scenery ever.
Like you I feel very grounded & at peace in the woods. Lisa

Cyn said...

Oh Karen..this post brought tears to my eyes.:) I too was born and raised in Arizona and for some reason long to live somewhere "woodsy". Because my family is here Arizona will probably always be my home. I always say i was born in the wrong state! But this is where I am. Thanks for sharing the pics of TN, someday I hope to visit there. ;) There are times..I just pop online and google places like TN and literally take a virtual vacation.

Pat said...

Oh I love these pictures. Makes me happy to be in nature too...trees, water and plants are invigorating as well as bringing peace. I love TN. If you haven't been there in the fall, then I suggest you go. It is breathtaking with all the colors in the foliage.

Glad you're posting again!

ROSE VINE COTTAGE said...

Your pic's look magical,I want to jump thru the screen and right into the last pic, so beautiful!
Hugs~Kelly

Gia said...

That is really beautiful. What lovely pictures you took. Looks like God's country over there.

Rebecca said...

Hi Karen
Beautiful pictures and what a nice idea to post about! It is a nice way to get to know you.
Speaking of which I booked my flight to Phoenix Feb22 - I will be there through the 5th of March. I hope we can get together!
I will email you my cell# when it gets closer to leaving. I will be so glad to see the glorious sun!
Blessings

Rella said...

Hello on the overcast Saturday..Has not this rain we've had been crazy?!!

I love these photos of the place that make you happy. Tenn reminds me of home....Connecticut. The woods and the streams and rives. I know exactly the feeling you speak of and I know how it's hard to find it here. 11 years and this still does not feel the same as home. I hope you are able to travel to the East coast some day and I will be happy to tell you of some wonderful places to visit..or to stay.

xox Rella

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