The Gift of Subtleties

We're so focused on drama, and moving fast, that it can be easy to overlook the subtle aspects of life. In my experience that's where so much of life's richness is found - in the subtleties, the small and vast things that are part of every day; a smile, the way a flower grows out of a stone wall, the first cup of morning coffee, the way my body works its complex systems with no conscious effort on my part, the way the light changes through the day...   

Several weeks ago I visited Morris Arboretum in Philadelphia. It's an amazing place, and if you've never been there, I encourage you to go. My favorite time is when the magnolias bloom. They carpet the hillside, and when they bloom it's like wandering through a fairy land. I was standing under a huge magnolia, lost in the beauty of light, form and color, loving the contrast between the white blossoms and the deep blue sky, when the breeze picked up. In that moment, I was showered with petals drifting down from the tree. I don't have words to describe what it felt like -  it was a gift of grace that I experienced through my whole being. If I hadn't taken the time to slow down and appreciate a tree, I would have missed the moment.

What subtle experiences have enriched your life?

With joy,


Cynthia Joba

A Spring Wish

Although it's cold here in the northeast, and tulips are still a dream, spring is surging. The light is stronger, I can hear more songbirds, and snowdrops, winter aconite and hellebore are blooming in the garden. What a gift - life emerging in this way after a long, cold winter. No matter how many years I experience it, it's always new.

Wishing you the miracle of new growth,

Unexpected Beauty


Last year I spent the month of February in Santa Fe, New Mexico. When I returned home in early March, there was still snow on the ground and the earth was frozen at least 6" down. And yet ... in the midst of the cold, the snow, the frigid earth ... there were flowers. Snowdrops arising to gift my eyes. How wondrous that such fragile beauty (or maybe not so fragile) can grow in those conditions. Life never ceases to amaze me. May your life be filled with beauty, no matter what is going on.


Cynthia Joba

P.S. I really wanted to share this experience with you, but this is the most decent photograph of snowdrops in the snow that I have. It's not my best work, and as a result, I almost didn't use this post - but the story won the day.

You can browse more of my photographs here.