When my children were small, I was so focused on taking care of my family, my husband, kids, parents, household things. I didn't really take time to notice my surroundings. We had a nice yard, but not much care went into it. We mowed the lawn and pulled some weeds. We may have planted a few flowers, but that wasn't a passion. The first time I planted tulips, I put them in a row 1 2 3 across the front of the house. My friend visited and told me how to plant them in clusters. It wasn't until my youngest was in third grade that my vision changed. I took a painting class. Our instructor told us to take a ride and really notice the colors in the grasses along the road, really look at the fall trees, check out the cloud formations. I did that and I was changed forever. I noticed the different colors. The grasses weren't just brown and green...they were burn sienna, yellow ochre, red iron oxide, burnt umber and on and on. I would think of how I might paint the roadside in those colors. The trees were all shades of red, gold, green. An Oak wasn't simply brown...the leaves were so many shades of brown. A bare tree against a snowy landscape to me, is so beautiful and simple. The skies change in minutes...so many colors. My yard changed at this time. I took a real interest in the plantings....the colors and changing seasons in the garden. It became a passion....a passion that will last until my last breath.
I take rides with my husband just about every week. He gives me a report on how the farmers are doing this year, we check out the dam in Oregon, we might look at some houses, but I don't think he sees the same as I do. He mentions that the county hasn't cut down the grasses along the road very well this year....I see beauty in the grasses and I'm glad that they were left. I can look at a field of nothing and see all the colors and he might say that he wonders why the farmer didn't plant corn there. I realize that men and women's interests are different. He is artistic, but in other ways. I guess that's what makes an interesting marriage....if you see things differently and both try to see out of each other's eyes.
Lastly you can apply this to watching the birds...really look at a red cardinal...there are many shades of red in their feathers. A junco doesn't become a black, gray and white bird. There are buff and flesh colors in their plumage.
We gardeners have posted so many beautiful fall pictures. It has been a spectacular autumn for color. If you are out driving now that the leaves are mostly down, take a look along the roadside and out into the fields and see what colors are left for us to enjoy. This winter you will be amazed at how many colors are in the snow and it's shadows, the wonderful bare trees with colorful bark. We can enjoy color all throughout the year....not just in autumn.