The Beauty all around Us.


I went outdoors today. It is a big deal for me, I rarely leave the confines of my house. I can’t imagine there’s many people stop to take in the wonder of being outside every day. I spend the cold months in a hibernation of sorts, the cold, damp Scottish winter disagrees with me. I don’t think I have mentioned yet that I live with a condition called Fibromyalgia along with a host of other health problems but it is this condition that affects my health severely. I have very limited mobility, I hobble my way around indoors but outdoors I am wheelchair bound. I live with constant pain which I have learned to cope with and as long as the levels are tolerable. Sometimes the pain spikes so high that I do believe it will drive me crazy, that I will be carted off to a Victorian style insane asylum before the day is through. I am still here though! I am still sane! I am still coping and carrying on.

A beautiful old tree

A great big beautiful old tree

Warm weather is my friend, cold weather is my enemy. In the colder months I stay in my nest, keeping warm and keeping dry and waiting, waiting to see tiny buds peeking out of the earth. They whisper to me “soon” and “just a little longer, stay strong”. I listen and wait. When I do go out it is because I have to, mostly medical appointments or visiting family when I just can’t be inside any longer. Today it was an appointment with the pain clinic that pulled me out into the world. It was a dreary morning to say the least! Dark, gloomy and the air was heavy with moisture; it wasn’t raining, it was the dreaded drizzle, you end up soaked to the skin before you know it because it’s only drizzle, you don’t need a coat. We Scots know to have a healthy respect for drizzle, we don’t forget our waterproofs!

Horses on a hazy winter day

Horses on a hazy winter day

My appointment went well and we hit the shops. Oh I love to shop but even that can’t draw me out on a non-appointment day! Marks & Spencers food outlet, somewhere only the well off can do their whole food shop; even they would grudge the prices though their products do tend to be worth it! Then off to Tesco. I decided to stay in the car, I had already went quite substantially “off list” with two bunches of beautiful Alstromerias, a half price box of milk chocolates, a really yummy looking shortcrust chicken pie, red grapes and strawberries! Not essentials! My husband is a far more efficient shopper than I am. So then home time, a half hours drive usually but not today!

An Aisle with a Stile

An Aisle with a Stile

The weather had improved, it was dry and the sun was out, albeit behind a blanket of white clouds. There was a haziness to the air, smoke dissipating as gardeners were taking advantage of a dry afternoon to burn the dead leaves. I had brought the camera along with me and asked if we could stop at a few lay-bys to take a few pictures. One of the best ways to cope with pain is distraction, I find taking pictures a great distraction and so we arrived home two hours later with over two hundred photographs.

Trees on the hill with dead wood pile

Trees on the hill with a fallen brother

It may be cold, damp, dank, bleak and feels unending at times but there is beauty out there! You just have to SEE it. Everywhere I looked there was something interesting, something beautiful, something to remind me I am still in the world, I am still living my life and it is wonderful!

So here I have shared some from today and I can’t wait to show you more.. please remember I am not a photographer I just like to take pictures.. be kind and enjoy.

One very old tree

One very old tree


59 thoughts on “The Beauty all around Us.

  1. I think it’s pretty cool that, although your theme is living with shadows and you seem to have things you want to work through, you’ve taken the time in this post to talk about how wonderful your day way and to show us photos to prove it! The pictures are just great and your approach to your world sounds great, too!

  2. This is such a lovely post! Really beautiful- which part of Scotland do you live in? I’m from the UK but I’m now living in Australia and your pictures of the countryside really makes me miss the UK!

  3. You are such a huge inspiration to me. You have taken your condition and made the best of it. That is something to be very proud of. Most people would fall into depression and their life would be gone. Yet you appreciate everything and see the true beauty of life even if it isn’t the way you wanted it be. More people need to take the time to appreciate the small things, like a tree in an empty field. Things like that are what make life worth living. Thanks for the post!

    • Thank you very much that is a big compliment! I have been through the darest days of depression, i would not want to go back there so every day may not be good but i look for the good in every day. it’s there though it sometimes takes a bit of finding lol! Life is rarely perfect if we save our happiness for when it is we’d be a long time waiting! i really enjoy reading your blog.. just want to say one thing.. don’t be so hard on yourself… a lot of this stuff we go through takes a lot of forgiveness on ourselves for things that aren’t our fault.

      • Yeah it may seem like I’m too hard of myself on some of the blogs I just wanted to be able to spot my mistakes for future reference although nobody is to blame for why they happened and I know that. Thanks 🙂

  4. Hello, thank you for stopping by my blog. What a beautiful place the UK is, thanks for sharing the pictures. I live across the pond in the US, on the west coast in Oregon. My best friend suffers from fibromyalgia. I am sorry you and so many others have to live in pain. I look forward to following your journey.

    • Thank you Becki i am happy you stopped by, your story was so inspiring to me, what you have fought through and your still strong! the uk is pretty but damn its cold dank wet winters, i need to find somewhere i can be warm all year round lol! i don’t know a lot about oregon but the mountainous landscaape remind me of the top of scotland, only it’s more barren and less lush here. I’m sorry to hear about your friend, fibro is nasty but there’s a way through the pain, ask me that in 10 years and i may have changed my mind! Thank you for the follow, i look forward to more of your posts to.

      • I have heard that our weather is similar to Scotland’s. Shaun Gibson, from the facebook group Share your wordprss blogs has described the weather there to me and the landscape, other than our lush forests, Scotland is a close match. Of course we don’t have beautiful castles either :). I am hearing of more and more people here in the states with fibro. I am so sorry you suffer from the fatigue and pain. I see it first hand with my friend and I feel so helpless that I can’t help her. You take care and I look forward to your journey. XXOO

  5. Wow i love these photo’s. you have a very positive attitude to life. I get winter blues or mild SAD so know how you feel on a dark, wet day. Best to stay in and create something beautiful!

    • thank you so much, i like to take some pics when i get out and about so now it’s nice having somewhere i can share them. i have a friend with sad, she uses a lightbox, i hope it doesn’t affect you too badly. i was given a lightbox to help me wake up after rough nights but i just fell asleep sitting at it lol! i used to love needlework and craft but sore hands stopped all that, so i moved to other hobbies but i still love seeing what others make.

  6. My mother suffers from fibromyalgia, so I have seen how much of a toll it takes on a person’s mind and body. I think it’s good you have decided to write here on WordPress, for your sake and others’. I think it will be good for you, to get your thoughts out there, and I’m sure there are a lot of people dealing with emotional or physical pain who can benefit from reading your stories.

    Thank you for the follow, and I look forward to reading more posts from you! 🙂

    • I’m so sorry to hear your mother has fibro, it’s not something i would wish on anyone. I have been coping with it better this year even though the pain levels are higher. frame of mind i believe so i hope to stay in this good place. It would be outstanding if i was able to help others through my sharing. Thank you for coming by, glad you like it, you have a great blog yourself. i’ll be keeping my eye on it.. don’t think twice about spending a week in pj’s lol! it something my daughter does all the time when she has no work or uni, when you have a busy life it’s great to just take it slow for a break!

  7. Again, thank you for sharing. Getting outside when one has an illness that keeps us housebound can be such an uplifting experience. I’ve been unable to leave my house or go far (getting further now and making the most of it), for a couple of years or so. I used to drive everywhere, then couldn’t drive or walk, I never walked anywhere, but now I can get out, not too far, but when I do, its just fandabydosie, one learns to appreciate different things 🙂

    • So glad to hear you are able to get out a bit more now. it really is a novelty experience when you’ve been cooped up like a battery hen! i have a week filled with medical appointments most days so i won’t be enjoying any extra activities on my days out this week. do you know the spoon theory? i will definately have to save my spoons to get through this coming week!

    • It has been a bit better today, thank you. i still have sunday before my busy week begins so i am sure it will be fine. glad you enjoyed my trees.. have always felt an affinty with them. i view the family my husband and i built as being a young tree. i hope we have put or roots deep and that our children will continue to strengthen it. you never know in life, but i hope.

  8. I love that you take photographs! You have a good eye. I particularily enjoy the horses. Good composition with the horses being the main focus and the beautiful stone wall in the forefront. Keep doing it! I’m so sorry for your health problems. But is sounds like you are cheerful anyway, and making use of your gifts. I think that’s great.

    • you like my photos, i am very honoured!! you are an amazing photographer! you must have so much patience to get your wildlife shots! do you use a tripod? i managed to lose the little bit that attaches ontot he camera bottom and slides on and off the tripod! i just know if i buy a new one it will show right up again and i really can’t afford to buy one anyway! The horses were so well framed but they were so far away, i wish the shot had been clearer but there was no way of getting closer. it still would have been hazy because of the smoke hanging in the air so i’m not too unhappy with it. there’s not much i can do about my health problems and i either give in and wallow in pity or i do my best to live as full a life as i can. i was on very heavy medication for 5years, before i started being looked after by the pain clinic, i lived in a daze throughout those years and i’m furious that time was lost needlessly.. won’t let any more go to waste. thank you again for your support, means the world to me.

  9. So glad you got out to enjoy the day. Drizzle is a part of life in the Pacific NW of US too. I know it well! You capture the scenery well, and I quite enjoy your photography! Thanks for sharing it and your stories…

    • Thank you! very flattered, not sure i’d say i do photography.. i just take pictures of things.. when the drizzle doesn’t get in the way! Sorry you have to put up with it too! i think it’s the most depressing of weather. Rain, hail, snow, rainbows, sunshine, wind, fog, etc all have some redeaming beauty to them but i just can’t find the beauty when i look at drizzle! i really liked your northwest winter textures project, it made such a striking notebook cover. you have such inspiring landscapes around you, on a much larger scale than in scotland!

      • Glad you have been enjoying the NW textures project. I got the idea for the cover and almost chickened out and didn’t do it when I was about to start since I could see it was going to be tricky. A friend pushed me a little and encouraged that she knew I could do it…so I did. 🙂 I love the photos I’ve seen of Scotland’s landscapes, and would love to visit someday. I suppose the scale is larger here, but both are beautiful!

  10. Your blog is beautiful; the writing, the pictures, the thought you have put into it, everything. Pain has no place here. Please, please, please read this book: The Mindbody Prescription, Dr Sarno (I found it at my local library in New Zealand, so it’s bound to be in Scotland too) or have a read of the TMS wiki and forum. It hurts my heart to read on wordpress of so many people living in pain, because I know what pain is, I lived it myself for 2 years. And I know what it is to leave it behind. Who would I be without pain and all that it represents? That can be another fear in itself! Fear of leaving the safety of the shadows, of truly shining. Please read it, and if you do, I would love to hear what you think. All the very, very best from a 45 year old wife and mother at the bottom of the world! x

    • I will head down to my own library at some point this week and see if they have it in their system. it sounds interesting and i’m willing to take help wherever it presents itself. i don’t believe i have a fear of being pain free but i know what you mean. i am well aware of how much better i could be without it, it holds me to the shadows but my hands are open seeking the light. thank you for giving your support and for complimenting my blog. my very best wishes to you

  11. My mother has suffered with Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue for the last seventeen years and therefore I can completely empathize with your story. I am so sorry that you suffer with this. However, I deeply admire your ability to see the beauty in all things and your positive energy. I thought that this post was truly touching and I am glad I happened upon your blog!

    • Firstly i am so sorry you have watched your mother suffer so much for so long. i think people can forget just how much the people around a chronically ill person go through. it is the hardest thing to watch someone you love suffer.
      Thank you for your kind words. i have been in a good headspace this year as i have seen some small improvements and that has given me renewed hope. i have some dark things to explore here but i hope to keep that positivity throughout. Thank you again.

      • You are most welcome! It has been difficult to watch my mother suffer with chronic illness for the last seventeen years, but I believe it has been one of life’s great lessons as well. She has taught me empathy and profound kindness through her brave and endearing actions, and for this I admire her–and everybody who goes through the same struggles–very deeply.
        I am glad that you doing better and I think you’re right: positivity is so important! Thank you for sharing your story.

  12. We’re in summer here in Australia and it’s so hot. I can’t wait for winter to get here. I’ll be in the UK in about 6 weeks and I can’t wait. Hopefully it will be cooler than here. Great blog.. 🙂

    • i have seen on the news just how hot it is over there just now. my husband has been watching the australian tennis open and now the england v australia one day international so i’m aware how bad the heat has been. i actually suffer badly in too hot an environment, different things than the cold brings on but still life limiting. i need to find somewhere that is a happy medium, win the lottery and then go spend the rest of my life there! Are you coming over for a holiday? it will be a lot lot cooler, i can promise you that! thanks for commenting and i appreciate the compliment.

  13. Lovely photos! I’ve always dreamt of seeing Scotland for some reason … the green hills. I’m sorry you have fibro. I have an online buddy in Nova Scotia, she had it too, but is now fibro-free. She wrote a book about it.

    • thank you, i’m no photographer but i think my camera is good, lots of options and functions i can play around with, it does all the work i just point and shoot! Scotland is indeed beautiful but then so are most places on earth, they simply each have their own flavour. i hope you get to visit one day. i’m happy your friend got better. i’d be interested in her book if you were able to link me to it if it’s available somewhere. i have a lot of other conditions but fibro seems to act like an exgagerator, it puts a magnifing glass onto the other symptoms and makes them so much worse. if fibro was taken out of the equation i know i would be much healthier. i’m doing my best to get there.

    • thank you.. i couldn’t find a link to purchase the book but i didn’t have much time for a proper look through her blog so i will leave her a message to ask where i can get it about. really interesting thank you again.

  14. Your pictures are lovely and you have such a way with words. After taking so much for granted it’s so enlightening to savor our surroundings. When I take my dog out whether it be sunny, rainy, snowy, cold or hot I’m amazed at the beauty around me and I remind myself to enjoy this moment. Thank you for sharing.

    • Glad you liked them, i hope to add many more. it gives me a reason to get out and about! I adore trees, they are such a visual reminder of the long journey. There are many worse things than fibro to have.. it simply doesn’t feel that way at times though! lol!

  15. Hi Shelley & thanks for stopping by & following: Two Voices One Thought. We look forward to stopping by your blog more often and getting to know you better through your posts. And by the way, what a lovely blog you have. Now that we’ve looked at all your posts & pictures, let us say how beautiful each one was. So sorry your suffering from this terrible illness but believe us when we say, we completely understand. My mother & Inion’s Nana was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and Rheumatoid Arthritis more than ten years ago and suffers from it terribly. Although she’s been prescribed adequate medications for the RA she has yet to find the proper medication for the Fibromyalgia as most of the medicines they’ve tried her on only created more problems and did more harm than good. We will keep you in our prayers as we do our Nana & hope that you both find excellent doctors & relief that adds to quality of life, very soon.

    • Hello Ladies, thank you very much for such lovely compliments. I enjoy your blog very much, great to see two close friends sharing their love for writing with us all. Sorry to hear about your mother and inion’s nana, i understand how awful it is to love them so much but not be able to do anything but wish for their pain to go away. I’ve also been on that particular medication merry go round, so many dreadful side effects. Research into fibromyalgia has only started in the last decade so many of the drugs we are offered are still in the early stages of developement or actually meant to treat other conditons. My sight was damaged by a medication called pregabalin (lyrica) a few years ago and although it has slowly improved it will never be as good as it was. We know when we take these new medications that it’s a gamble! i have medication mix that does help but is not perfect, happy that it does allow me some small measure of life again! i do hope your relatives are able to find a good medical team that can help them find some relief. thank you again for such a caring comment. my very best wishes, shelley

  16. Beautiful pic´s.

    You´re a woman in your 40, I can´t compare my pancreatitis with your situation, but I will say this. I just came from the funeral of my uncle, I stayed by his bed literally until he took his last breath so I literally saw him die. And guess what, with all your problems your alive! That´s a blessing believe me. And with all the new science research I can guarantee they´ll find a cure or make some strange pill to make life a bit better.

    Love ya and read ya again. I forgot, and Stay Frosty.

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