The Changing Seasons, May 2021

Storm surge, Tapeka Point, Northland, NZ. Image: Su Leslie 2021

I like visual metaphors, and the shot above does rather sum up my month.

Several whanau members are experiencing health and other crises; the most serious being my seemingly indestructable mother hospitalised twice in the last couple of weeks. It’s made me very aware how much on-going worry and helplessness destroy motivation and productivity; despite my best efforts to manage anxiety by keeping busy.

Eco-printing on silk with eucalyptus and pohutukawa leaves. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Work in progress; felt slippers for the colder weather ahead. Image: Su Leslie 2021

It’s only taken a year to get around to it … Refurbished telephone table. Image: Su Leslie 2021

The “before” shot, telephone table. Image: Su Leslie 2021

There have been some high points in the month, including a rainy, but relaxing weekend in the Bay of Islands with the Big T.

Russell, Bay of Islands, NZ. Once described as “the hell hole of the Pacific.” Image: Su Leslie 2021

Sunset, Russell wharf. Image: Su Leslie 2021

On the car ferry, Opua, Northland. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Late afternoon, Langs Beach, Northland, NZ. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Langs Beach, Northland, NZ. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Mangawhai Heads, Northland, NZ. Image: Su Leslie 2021

And an afternoon wandering around the Auckland waterfront, enjoying the last of the sunshine.

Viaduct basin, Auckland NZ. Image: Su Leslie 2021

I’d thought that taking a break from blogging would re-awaken my enthusiasm, but — perhaps because there’s so much else going on — I’m not really feeling more inspired or engaged than before. And while I don’t plan to abandon ZimmerBitch altogether, I suspect that posts will continue to be fairly infrequent.

I am happy to carry on hosting The Changing Seasons for a bit longer, but if there is anyone else who’d like to take it on, that would be wonderful.

About The Changing Seasons

The Changing Seasons is a monthly project where bloggers around the world share their thoughts and feelings about the month just gone. We all approach this slightly differently — though generally with an emphasis on the photos we’ve taken during the month.

For many of us, looking back over these photos provides the structure and narrative of our post, so each month is different.

Others focus on documenting the changes in a particular project — such as a garden, an art or craft project, or a photographic diary of a familiar landscape.

But in the end, it is your changing season, and you should approach it however works for you.

There are no fixed rules around post length or photo number — just a request that you respect your readers’ time and engagement.

Tags and ping-backs

Tag your photos with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so that others can find them

Create a ping-back to this post, so that I can update it with links to all of yours.


Natalie from Little Pieces of Me


Tish at Writer on the Edge

Tracy at Reflections of an Untidy Mind

Ju-Lyn from Touring my Backyard

Marilyn at Serendipity, Seeking Intelligent Life on Earth

Brian from Bushboy’s World

Sarah at Expedition

Suzanne from Life at No. 22

LightWriteLife joins us this month

101 thoughts on “The Changing Seasons, May 2021

  1. Pingback: The Changing Seasons, May 2021 – Ladyleemanila

  2. I know you are looking for someone to take this over. I feel I ought to offer, but I just can’t. I’m barely able to keep blogging regularly and am closer to giving it up than I am to taking on more work. I’ve been doing this for a decade and I’m tired. I feel like I need to pay more attention to my personal life and less to the computer. I spend far more time blogging than I do relating to other people and it is beginning to bother me. Kind of late, I know. Maybe age is catching up with me.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I’ve just read your ‘conversation’ with Marilyn and strongly relate to it, though with less reason. Your creativity in so many fields astonishes me Su, and to achieve so much with so many unhappy distractions is little short of astonishing. And as ever, your photos are atmospheric and beautiful. I – and others too, I’m sure – have missed you already, but an unwilling blogger is no use to anyone, so we can only hope that taking a prolonged break reinvigorates you.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Hey Su! I echo Margaret’s thoughts: I am certainly of those who has missed your presence in this WP space. I am sorry to hear your break hasn’t invigorated you as much as you’d hoped for.

      Am also sorry your whanau have been unwell, particularly your mother. Sending you a big hug.

      If no one else volunteers to host The Changing Seasons, I am very happy to help out here. The Changing Seasons has become very important to me the last few years as it allows me to reflect on my month, as well as catch up with BlogFriends who have become dear.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Hi Ju-Lyn. Thank you so much. My mum has always been so fit and healthy, so this has really knocked me (I know that sounds a bit selfish when she is the one who’s unwell)!

        I would love you to take over hosting The Changing Seasons. It’s a project very dear to my heart too, and I’d hate for it to end.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Margaret. I miss the engagement with other bloggers, so am unlikely to disappear altogether, but was finding that I didn’t have much to say, but had put pressure on myself to post. I am enjoying doing more “physical” things, which also work very well as distractions from worrying about things I can’t really change.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: The Changing Seasons, May 2021 – Touring My Backyard

  5. Pingback: The Changing Seasons – May 2021 – Reflections of An Untidy Mind

  6. I am so happy to see you back, but understand your reluctance to jump back in, again. It’s hard when so much else occupies your mind and your time. Your photos are knock-out amazing, as always. Take care, Su.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Su, I really feel for you and your mum and your family. To be so far away must be traumatic. Look after yourself.
    Also, you are never boring. I always love the quietness and the mood of your photos and the results of your artistic experiments. But no pressure, plod along. Take time out. I’m feeling completely smashed by events as they unfold and it is affecting me physically.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Fabulous series for this theme, Su! I admire how you Refurbishing your telephone table.
    I agree, hosting photo challenges is very time consuming. Maybe you can find one or two partners to share the responsibility.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Pingback: The Changing Seasons ~ May – Tish Farrell

  10. Storms on the outside and on the inside: I can recognise that state of things. But you have created some beautiful things, Su. Can also identify with your lack of enthusiasm for blogging. My current motivation is really the ancestors’ wills. Creating a blog post is the best way for me to process the material. Hoping your mum can recover her former resilience.

    The Changing Seasons ~ May

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you Tish.
      I totally get the excitement of the Wills. Those that I’ve found have been absolute treasure troves, and I’m impressed (and slightly envious) that yours are so old. Great sleuthing.

      Liked by 2 people

  11. I had wondered at your absence, Su. Blogging takes a different kind of energy than making your beautiful creations. Sorry about Mum. Is she recovered now? I love those atmospheric seas. 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you Jo. She’s home from hospital and with luck they will be able to sort out the medications she needs in the right doses. Incompatible medications/doses seem to have been the cause of her re-admissions.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Love those moody dramatic skies, I have missed your amazing photography, but understand that time out is necessary. Russell is on my list of places to visit if I ever get to NZ again, but being as it is 7 years now I am losing hope. I am sorry to hear about the family woes and in particular your mum. These are the times when you really want to be closer to them. I hope things improve soon.
    Sending hugs (( ))
    Jude xx

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks so much Jude. Yes; the world has never felt bigger; nor NZ so far away. I know you must feel the same with your Aussie whanau.

      I hope you do get to NZ sometime — I’ll have the wine chilling for our catch-up.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. So good Su. The dramatic skies are wonderful. Well done with that little table 🙂
    I am happy to take over. I am always late with my contribution so that’s my only concern but maybe it will make me be more focused lol
    Let me know if you would like me to have a go.
    Hope all goes well with you and the family. It is a trying time so many (((hugs))) xx

    Liked by 4 people

  14. I’m so sorry to hear that your mom’s having problems. Your photos are incredible, as usual. The moody ocean and sky. The scarf is gorgeous and the table refurbish is a DIY inspiration. I’d be sorry to see you take a step away from blogging, but I understand.

    Liked by 3 people

  15. Pingback: THE CHANGING SEASONS – MAY 2021 – Serendipity Seeking Intelligent Life on Earth

  16. Dear Su, I’m so, so sorry to hear about your mum, that must be hard time for you being so far away from her. I’m going to write you an email soon but thought I’d write to you here too, just to let youknow that I’m thinking of you, even when I’m so quiet myself.
    I can totally relate to you lack of motivation and productivity although I have to add it doesn’t look like you’re lacking any of that from the outside. And I get the blogging break – man, do I get that. As you can see, I’m tentatively getting back to it, yours being the first blog I’m visiting, dear friend.
    I LOVE your beautiful stormy seascape photos – they’re just amazing and I’d so love to have one of them hanging in big print on my wall – it’s just stunning.
    And I LOVE that silk scarf!!! And your felt slippers are so cute and neat, they remind me a bit of Japanese style slippers.
    And yay to that telephone table, it looks fab!
    Talk to you soon! Take care! Much aroha! xxx

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Your *new* telephone table is pretty. Nicely done. The photos of storms are amazing. I understand your situation with blogging, some days I, too, wonder how much longer will I go? No answer, of course.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Gorgeous pictures – I remember that description of Russell when we visited it and thought a lot must have changed! So sorry to hear about your mum and other things going on. Hope all goes well and thinking of you at this time.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Pingback: This is May 2021 – bushboys world

  20. Pingback: The Changing Season – May 2021 – Little Pieces Of Me

  21. I’m going through a similar distress with my whanau (I had to look that up but it’s a great word, so well worth the Google search.) Both my mother and my mother-in-law are in the hospital with very serious conditions. My mom is undergoing surgery right as I type this. I’m waiting to hear how she’s recovering soon. And, because of restrictions, I cannot easily visit her in the hospital. My mother-in-law lives in California, so I cannot visit her at all. It is hard when you cannot ‘be there’ for the people you care about. It’s just a big stew of stress. Which is why coming here to look at pictures of turbulent storms is very relaxing. It’s almost a visualization of the emotion upheaval we are going through. It helps me think, “This storm shall pass…eventually. Just hold on until it does.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am so sorry to hear about your mum and mother in law. I hope your mother’s surgery went well. I’ve lived most of my adult life on the other side of the world to my mum, and have never felt so far away as I do right now. Thinking of you.

      Liked by 1 person

      • They have both come out of surgery much better than when they went in. That’s a good outcome as far as I’m concerned. Even if the bills will eventually create a mess of their own. So, if your mother lives somewhere with good health coverage, you can take comfort in that.

        Liked by 1 person

        • That is good news!! Mum’s in England, so medical bills are not an issue. I am incredibly grateful for the NHS, and our own public health system. Not perfect, but humane. I hope the downstream financial strain on your loved ones isn’t too horrendous.

          Liked by 1 person

          • You speak the truth! (Bills are the number one reason most people in America put off going to the doctor when that is absolutely the worst choice and ends up costing you more in the long run.) You know, I often wondered why Lemmings throw themselves off cliffs and into a frozen sea. Looking at (American) human behavior, I can’t say we are far off.

            Liked by 1 person

  22. First, best wishes for the health of your family. Puts everything into perspective, doesn’t it? Second, love the wave shot. Amazing job per your usual. And third, telephone table–love! You modernized it beautifully and yet it’s still quaint.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. Su, I am in awe of your creativity during such a worrying time. At the same time that creativity has most probably got you through the worst days. Best of all a weekend away with Mr T. I agree with comments in that you will be missed and maybe one day we can organise a Bloggers Get Together. I understand your lack of blogging enthusiasm when real life needs our attention. Keep popping as I will be too 🙂 Kia kaha and much aroha for all concerned.

    Liked by 2 people

  24. Pingback: What’s been happening? May 2021 – Life at No. 22

  25. Pingback: The Changing Seasons – Spring Edition | Art Expedition

  26. Pingback: The Changing Seasons – May days – LightWriteLife

  27. I so sorry to hear about your mothers health. Hope she gets well soon. Also, you should definitely take care of yourself. Nothing is worth it if it doesn’t bring you happiness or satisfaction. Maybe you just need more time away doing something else to get your grooves back. I wish you all the best though.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. You take some of the most striking photos. I am saddened to hear about your mother’s tenuous health. When I am in the throes of something like this, I tend to shut down all unnecessary things and hunker down. It is the only way I can ensure I have the energy (physical and mental) to handle what comes my way. I’ll be thinking of you. xoxo Regina

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much Regina. That’s exactly it — I’m hunkering down. It seems at the moment that as one person’s health improves (my mother, thankfully) another gets sick. I’m starting to dread phone calls.

      Liked by 1 person

  29. Dearest Su, so sorry to hear of your family health problems. I do hope your Mum is making a steady recovery. I also have had a turbulent month with jack in hospital for a total knee replacement, which 2 weeks after the op is, thankfully making steady progress I also, very unexpectedly, had a stay in hospital. Your photos of NZ are so inspiring and we are looking forward to maybe being able to visit my family for jack’s 90th, and my 80th, and once more climb Mt Maunganui.
    Thank you for hosting this inspiring monthly post. I know how much time it must take and this month is the first I have not achieved dead line, but I do hope to make a delayed presence before June races by. Stay well and creative and I look forward to seeing more of your beautiful photos and creative projects as you find the inspiration to occasionally join the blogging community.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you so much Pauline; Mum does seem to be better this week. Other whanau, not so much, but it’s a relief after Mum being so suddenly taken ill.
      I’m glad that Jack is making a good recovery — give him my best regards — and I’m so sorry to hear that you’ve been in hospital. I hope that you’re feeling much better now.

      Sending aroha to you both.

      Liked by 1 person

  30. wow those later afternoon beach shots are spectacular –
    prayers for your mom and strength and freshness for all
    – oh and the phone table came out great! love the little change of hardware too


  31. Hello Sue, I have not been keeping up! I am so sorry to hear that your Mother is having health issues…this is a worrying time, I am sure. On a very selfish note; I would miss your beautiful photos and prompts. You remind me, just today in fact, how helpful it was to blog more frequently. I think I lost the thread of blog life with the constant angst of work, U.S. politics and then pandemic issues. You reminded me of the beauty and grace of sharing the simple moments as we move through our lives. I am keeping you and your family in my thoughts… Christine


  32. Pingback: The Changing Seasons: June 2021 – Touring My Backyard

  33. It seems like a break can sometimes make us turn away from blogging instead of re-energizing us. That has certainly happened to me in the past, but the urge to write has always come back. I hope you find your mojo again.

    Liked by 1 person

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