Friday, 1 January 2016

Stormy waters and a sense of wonder


Welcome to 2016!


What are your hopes and aspirations for 2016?  As always I strive each year to make my life simpler and enjoy more the simple pleasures of life.  I do move closer to this goal each year, but perfection as always is some way off!


The coast here has been battered by gales and storms and two landslides since Christmas. The conditions have been so bad that the fishermen working out of West Bay have been unable to get out of the harbour and earn a living. Watching the waves crashing ashore you appreciate the power and danger of the sea. Mark in the last post commented about how those living by the sea imagine it always to be ripples lapping on a golden beach rather than it being dark, rough and threatening.


We had a trip out in the car to Lyme Regis, everything looked so grey and was such a contrast to my previous posts here! There was however something special about the light.......




Only 2 surfers were out enjoying the waves.
Our son's yellow coat in the image below was providing the only element of colour! Dogs are only allowed on this stretch of beach on leads. He and Tavi were enjoying a good run, although being a Westie, Tavi will run around and around in circles. I just caught him as he was turning! The greyness here too was such a contrast to the amazing colours shown on  David Attenborough's  new series of the Great Barrier Reef shown on the BBC this week. Did anyone else see the first epsiode?


One of my Christmas presents was the beautiful book by Rachel Carson called The Sense of Wonder which was written in the 1960's. It was a book written to help keep alive children's inborn sense of wonder and renew our own delight in the mysteries of earth, sea and sky.(She is better known for the book "Silent Spring" that altered the world to the dangers of pesticides and taking the earth for granted)

 Although my children are no longer small, I think the blogging world allows us to share this sense of wonder in the prose and pictures we share. The book has inspired me, during this coming year, to  pay more attention to everything around me. She describes in the book of walks with her nephew in the evening by the coast of Maine looking at the rocks, crabs, clouds, stars and wildlife, and sharing the wonder of these things.



 I shall leave you with this quote from Rachel Carson :-

The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.”


                                                       Sarah x

60 comments:

  1. It's true what they say - when you live by the sea there's always something new to see!

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  2. Beautiful pictures. Love the waves! Best wishes for a Happy and Healthy New Year!

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  3. I think you're right about how blogging allows us to share that awe and wonder! The sea is a dangerous place in times of bad weather- I always think of how the fishermen in the Mousehole cat tale couldn't get out in bad weather to fish and the people went hungry! x

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    1. My husband's aunt used to live in Mousehole and gave the children the beautiful video of the Mousehole Cat one Christmas. It became a family favourite, I too have been reminded of this story over the past few days.
      Just found it on youtube.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w3sOZT-n98s Sarah x

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  4. Dear Sarah - I love a raging sea with its waves crashing onto the pebbles, but equally can appreciate how difficult it must be when it is the place where you need to ride your boat in order to earn a living.
    I must say that I think that you are already blessed with a great sense of wonder from the wonderful images that you share with us.

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    1. Thank you Rosemary, those words mean so much. Sarah x

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  5. I love that quotation at the end! I'm lucky enough to have never lost the childhood awe! I did see the latest David Attenborough - amazing - can't wait for the next episode!

    A lovely post and I enjoyed seeing the coast in a different light.
    Happy New Year!

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    1. Your blog was one of the ones I was thinking of in sharing the sense of wonder! Sarah x

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  6. Hi,found you on Mrs Custards wonderful blog.How I envy you living by the sea,I love the verse that you ended on,if the world was made of bloggers like us how lovely would that be!

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    1. Hello and welcome it's nice to meet you! Sarah x

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  7. It's a strange thing that winter does to the light. Virtually all of the photos we took in Norway look as though they were shot in black and white.

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    1. That's strange isn't it the lack of colour. I haven't noticed that happening to this extent before. Sarah x

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  8. Hey Sarah,
    That quote resonates with me very much. You have captured the coast in winter perfectly. I especially like the last picture. Have a wonderfully less cluttered new year!
    Leanne xx

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  9. I love the sound of that book! One thing retirement has given me is time to appreciate all the small details of life. Just wandering around the garden having time to look up close. Too often we are rushing everywhere and miss the fine detail. Here's to you in 2016 and hoping that you will have time to stop and wonder. Barbara X

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  10. And the sun finally made an appearance. I have never been to a beach like that, but I have seen those swells and waves crashing over the lighthouses in the North Sea. Kind of terrifying. I think I like yours better. Love to visit here and hope your new year is the best. Yes, Rachel Carson should be legend in schools.

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  11. I agree wholeheartedly with Rachel Carson's quote! Thank you for your part in spreading the wonder of it all.

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  12. I love that book Sarah and have given it several times as a gift to parents of new babies and little children.

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    1. This book would be a lovely gift for parents with young children. Sarah x

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  13. Thanks for the link to The Mousehole Cat - have just watched it. Love Star Gazey Pie!

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    1. Glad you enjoyed the Mousehole cat and the Star Gazey pie! Sarah x

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  14. The Carson quote rings true for me! I am very thankful to have been reared on farms by parents who greatly appreciated the natural beauty of the world around us and thereby passed along their loving interest to me. Back in the 1950s and 60s my folks practiced green living in many ways. Our trash was separated into compost, paper, metal and glass, they planted productive gardens, and shopped frugally with my mom making and mending much of our clothing. I fall short of their achievements and am determined to do better. The scouting ideal I learned from them, "leaving a place as good as or better than the way I found it" still guards my actions. Thanks for cheering me on to these goals through your beautiful posts, Sarah! Blessings to you and yours in 2016! xx

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    1. That is such a good ideal to follow. Each generation think they are progressive but I think there are better ways of living that have been forgotten along the way,just like the way you were brought up.Sarah x

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  15. I am so with you in wanting to slow down and enjoy the simpler things in life and went some way to achieving that in 2015 but like you have a way to go yet. I love all your wintry seascape photos, but let's hope conditions improve for the people who make their living from the sea. Your new book sounds fascinating, if only we could all retain the awe and wonder of childhood. xx

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  16. A lovely post, I don't live too far away from the sea & visit as often as I can xx

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  17. A lovely post, Sarah. The weather is grey and stormy here in Hastings, too. Perhaps weather likes this helps with the sense of wonder - it reminds me that we are, in the end, powerless little beings here because nature allows us the space and time to exist.

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  18. Amazing seascapes - though the sun will always be shining on Lyme Regis - in my mind's eye! Wishing you all a Happy and Healthy 2016. I'm working towards deciding on a motto for 2016 but it will be along the lines of the journey towards a simpler existence and enjoying those magical moments.

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  19. Yes! I did see David Attenborough's
    Great Barrier Reef...Brilliant! Thought it quite
    funny when the three of them got into the mini
    sub...That had toilet facilities..But was open
    house, if it was to be used! Scary!!! :).

    Summer around the Dorset coast is lovely, personally
    l prefer the winter months, the wind. the waves, the
    fear...!!! And..Trying to keep the ice~cream in the
    cornet..Great fun! Would'nt change it for the world...
    'Gods own county'. Love It!

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    1. The mini sub was tiny and David was amazing getting into it so easily despite his age. I wouldn't have wanted to use the toilet facilities! Sarah x

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  20. First of all, I love your new header, secondly, I love Rachel Carson's quote at the end. She is correct; I often wonder and WISH we all, the entire world, could see the planet earth from the silent distance of space. To shut off all the noise, the quarrels, the schemes....to just see how beautiful the blue and green and white against the quiet of the black space truly is, and how we truly could be.

    Tavi is AMAZING! Look at that rascal GO! The sea my friend, you shall always have something wondrous to share this new year. Thank you for the inspiration. Anita

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  21. my hopes for this year are that I can relax more, get more exercise and spend less time working (blog and office job!). I've landed a new job that is to begin in a couple of months and I can walk to work every day,too! I just added a puppy to my menagerie (picked her up yesterday and have had no sleep since - Max hates her!) and now I'm all set for achieving my intentions :) Happy New Year dear Sarah! xox Check out my puppy here: https://www.facebook.com/DesignDreamsByAnne/photos/a.219375138193819.54024.215385165259483/723360834461911/?type=3&theater

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    1. Izzy is so adorable I will enjoy watching her progress through your blog. Sarah x

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  22. I sooooo agree--blogging is a great way to share wonder and excitement, so glad to have discovered it.

    I'm of two minds about storms: I like the drama, as in your great photos. But they can wreak havoc on lives, as you point out.

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  23. Here's to another simple year of simple pleasures. I love that Rachel Carson too :)

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  24. What a wonderful Carson quote to end on. I have 'Silent Spring' but haven't read 'The Sense of Wonder' - I'll look out for it. It's been mighty stormy here too - exhilarating but unsettling as well. I'm grateful that I don't have to be at sea and can watch it from the shore. Happy New Year Sarah. Sam x

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  25. Yes it isn't always sunny and sandy, but the wind and rain bring dramatic changes to the sea which are exciting and beautiful.
    My first hope is for a healthy 2016 for my hubby and then a hope that we will feel more settled in our new home. I would love to achieve the planting of a wildlife friendly garden this year and more birdwatching time.

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    1. I do hope your hopes come true in 2016. Since my hubby had cancer we haven't taken good health for granted and we changed our lives to reflect our new outlook on life. Sarah x

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  26. We haven't been battered too much, but it is a tad windy! I'm sad looking at the pictures of up North, the hotel we married in at Glenridding has been flooded twice and the bridge at Pooley Bridge collapsed which is right near the place we stayed in all those years ago :(

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    1. I'm glad you haven't been battered to much unlike up North and Scotland. The pictures of Pooley bridge collapsing were so dramatic with it happening so fast. It must be so awful for all whose homes and businesses have been affected, I do feel so sorry for them. Sarah x

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  27. What a great time you and Tavi had at Lyme, it is wonderful this time of year isn't it. Happy New Year! xx

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  28. What wonderful photos, I love the sea and long to move near it as I was brought up by the sea in S. Wales. I now live in Essex but only 16 miles from Southend on Sea which we visit at least once a week.
    Happy New Year!

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  29. I love your photos of the wintery grey sea.

    I read "Silent Spring" many years ago. Rachel Carson is an inspiration.

    Happy New Year to you and your family!

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  30. Great pics of the sea in winter (my favourite time to be there) and I loved the quote. Happy New Year Sarah :)

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  31. A beautiful quote to ponder.

    You are so right about people not being aware of the treacherous sea. The El Niño is predicted to begin this week on the coast of California. Just a few weeks ago, the sea came over the wall and down our lane. We have our sand bags at the ready.

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    1. I do hope that the storms and flooding with you isn't as bad as they are predicting. Sarah x

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  32. We visited Hive Beach not far from you a few days ago and the sea looked like it was boiling, very impressive and scary at the same time!

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  33. The first and last images were on Burton beach when I was trying to catch the sunrise. The waves seem to have got larger as the week goes on! We can still see today out of the window, large waves heading towards East cliff. Sarah x

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  34. What a great post. It does look very grey, but colourful days lie ahead!

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  35. Sarah
    Yes, so far 2016, has certainly provided a very damp and blowy start, surely it can only improve?

    That book "The Sense of Wonder" sounds a very good and interesting read.

    Happy and Healthy New Year Wishes to you and yours

    All the best Jan

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  36. Hi Sarah, we've also been experiencing heavy rains and blustery winds, so much so that we'e been indoors for most the time. Love your stormy photographs but I feel so sorry for the folks up north who have had a terrible time with floods this winter. It goes by quickly doesn't it, it seems the older I get the quicker the year flies by. Wishing you and yours a lovely 2016 and lots of smelling of roses and enjoying the small things in life! Sharon x

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  37. I have to say I love being at the coast in winter regardless of the weather - your pictures show the wonderful raging majesty of the sea. I read Rachel Carsons book many years ago but the new one sounds right up my street. Happy 2016 to you.

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  38. It must be fabulous living by the sea. I love these photos capturing daily life and all it entails. Wishing you and your family a wonderful new year! :)

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  39. Until I came to live in London, I always lived close to the sea and have never lost my respect for its power. Waves that big are exhilarating as long as you don't have to put to sea in such storms. Hopefully no-one was injured and the cliffs were intact following such a battering. I do love the monochrome light of your photos, Sarah, it makes any colour in the photos really stand out - the pic of your son in his yellow coat is wonderful! Happy New Year, let's hope 2016 is a good one! Caro x

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  40. Those were brave surfers! Brrr. Lovely pictures.
    I thought I would have an uncluttered life, once my children left home, it didn't last long, they started bringing stuff back, which wouldn't fit in their new homes! I have a room filled to the gills with their clutter.
    That's on my list of things to do for 2016, sort it out, sell,give away or recycle.
    The Rachel Carson book looks interesting, I shall have to check it out.
    Happy 2016,
    Susan.x

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  41. I love the oceans and what lovely photos you have!!!! Where was the first photo taken? You made me curious about the book 'Sense of Wonder." I am putting that one in my list of books to get. Indeed we need to live simpler lives and consume less. May you have a wonderful new year in 2016, may it bring peaceful moments, friendships, health and happiness!!

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  42. A Happy New Year Sarah! I am sorry to hear the weather has been so bad in your part of the UK. I heard of the floods, but never realised the sea did it's work too. Your photo's look beautiful though!

    The book sounds lovely. I will check it out!

    Have a lovely evening!

    Madelief x

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  43. Happy New Year to you + yours. Your images are beautiful and I do love the sea but now the forces of nature can be deadly and unpredictable. We have no flooding here, just mud and swamp like gardens with some roads water logged. My heart breaks for all of those whose winter has been blighted by flood. I love Rachel Carson's books, she was so ahead of her time. x

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  44. The sea is indeed powerful and moody and destructive, at times. In Alaska we see that side and also the calm, brilliant blue water that gently laps on sandy or rocky shores. Just a day can provide quite a contrast at the sea!
    Happy 2016 to you and your family! Thanks for sharing your musings. Love to read them. My "new years goal" this year is to take care of myself and my body as I grow these precious twins inside me! Easier said than done when there's a long to-do list, but these little ladies take priority. :)

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  45. The winter coast is spectacular isn't it. The power of the sea and the weather is really brought home, and the light and colours and wonderful. I shall look out for that Rachel Carson book, it sounds exactly the sort of thing we would enjoy. I'm wishing you and yours a very happy New Year. Simple is indeed the very best way to go. CJ xx

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  46. You're lucky to live in such a beautiful area. I hope your new year is peaceful. :o)

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