Photography and Thoughts by Ulanawa Foote

Thursday, June 6, 2013


I enjoy watching the grackles ... their humorous antics and their beautiful iridescent colors sparkling in the sun. But this one was different. This one was eerily focused. It cared not who was or was not in its path. It had a determined purpose and a mission to fulfill. With the passing of a dear one, the grackle takes flight. I do not know whether to fear it or embrace it, so I stand back, carefully watching it pass, admiring and respecting it, as it earnestly flies by. Its wings bring a balanced rhythm of life and death. They beat together as a song in flight. I look on and I wonder ...
I wonder about the things and memories present before it  appeared, like a silent scream passing through my vision, as its golden eye fixed unwaveringly ahead. I wonder about how things will be since it cast its shadow on the land and before my eyes. In its wings rested mystery; In its wake, a veil of uncertainty. It has brought together life and death, good and bad, hope and concern. And it leaves me behind, to take it all in and sort it all out.
Journey on, mysterious flyer ... safely and surely to your place of determined premise. I look on and I wonder ...

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


Tree Swallows moved into our bird houses last year. Upon their arrival this spring, to their dismay, the house sparrows have moved into their former abode. They have been dive bombing the sparrows, trying to knock them down and intimidate them into giving them their house back. From what I can gather, the sparrows are holding their own pretty well. And here sit the swallows ...
HIM: "If I wasn't waiting so long for you to get ready, we could have left a little earlier and we would have gotten the house!"
HER: "If you weren't too proud to stop for directions we would have made it here faster!"

Tuesday, April 9, 2013


Ducks are calming and whether people are consciously aware of it or not, this calming aspect is one of the main reasons they are attracted to them. Watching them humorously waddle about or gracefully bobbing up and down in the water, ducks can calm the mind. They bring joy to the heart, and help us navigate through our own emotional waters. Their colors fill the waterways like a floating rainbow, stimulating the eyes and making light the heart. I have been very blessed to live in an area where there is an abundance of a wide variety of ducks. They are marvelous healers by Creator's loving design and can teach us the secret to our emotional struggles. They demonstrate by example how to let things roll off of us, like water on a duck's back ... allowing the waters to carry our troubles away. So next time you have a difficult day ... head to the water ... and let these waddling wonders help change a yucky day into a ducky day!! :)

Thursday, April 4, 2013


She rarely moves from the nest she has made upon the ground, as she is blind.
I have watched him tirelessly and sweetly care for her. He protects her, brings her food, caresses her, kisses her and grooms her. He stays close to her and keeps her warm.
It is only when he is away that she stresses. It is only when he is with her, close enough to touch her, that she is happy.  I am sure in her dark world she feels lost without him.
He calls to her to let her know he is nearby.
I have observed these eagles for a very long time and have been so very blessed to witness something so very precious. Even with his own challenges, he gives to her unselfishly. She is his world. And he is hers. So much can be learned from a selfless love such as this. ♥

Sunday, March 17, 2013

WAIT ...

Even in the darkest night,
morning eventually breaks through,
chasing away the shadows of the night,
singing forth its song of light and hope.
Wait for it …
for out of the night a song has begun,
in the morning, it shall be sung.


Wednesday, February 13, 2013


While shooting sunrise with sweet Wohali, we watched as a couple of coyote playfully ran, slid, skidded and tippy toed across the ice from island to island. I have noticed coyote tracks many times, but this was the first time I had actually seen them.
Silently I watched coyote crossing Lake Erie, where the waters have recently turned to ice, and remembered the many stories I had been told. Coyote is an interesting teacher. It is very clever and can be playfully cunning. And it usually shows up to reflect the foolish ways of our heart back to us. Sometimes in our desire to avoid certain situations, the heart begins the process of tricking itself into believing what it wants to believe, rather than productively dealing with and working to resolve things as they actually are. Coyote comes to reveal the traps the heart sets for itself, so it will not be ensnared upon circumstances which could be best avoided. Coyote is a relentless messenger and will tease and taunt until its warning is heeded.
Like the coyote I observed, walking on ice can be a very risky thing ... but not as great as the risk of remaining frozen in unpleasant and bitter cricumstances which could  be avoided, if we heed its wisdom and look closely and honestly into the heart. Coyote is a highly adaptable animal and teaches us the need to be the same. It encourages us to playfully, yet warily progress forward. It leads us to places that are nonthreatening, so we can recover and rebound from previous setbacks.
Coyote is loyal and devoted and I have read how it will  go to extremes to defend and protect its own. It teaches us the need to do the same. It shows us the importance of working together for the good of all. It allows us to see within our own hearts, steering clear of deception and snares, and like the coyote, RUN!

Thursday, February 7, 2013


It was just a year ago when Ugugu silently flew into my life. I remember it well, as it chose a place to sit and watch where we were actually at eye level with each other, only a few feet apart. It knew I was there, and it made very sure I was aware of its presence. It chose an unsheltered place to rest … out in the open, midway between earth and sky. And I knew it came to take the dead things in my life away. That is what the owl does.
It silently began a work that day within my heart and within my life’s circumstances. And I silently accepted its medicine. I never would have guessed then, the magnitude of change that has come forth when Ugugu began his silent and powerful work in my life. He began removing dead things … a little bit at a time. Dead works … gone. Dead situations … preened and ready to be rebuilt upon. Dead relationships … gone. Dead dreams … resurrected. With every dead thing I agreed to let go of, in its place new joy, happiness, love, and creativity flew in. Sweetness abounded where the decay of life’s bitter circumstances had been just months before. It has been a beautiful year of changes.
On silent feathers, Ugugu has returned to me again. I had been looking for him in the place he visited me last year, as I knew his nest was nearby. But to my sweet surprise, Ugugu moved his nest to my lotus pond. His choice to change his location makes my heart smile. His choice to move it to a place that is so very precious to me personally, makes my heart smile even more. It silently communicates wonderful things to me. I have never been happier. On silent feathers I fly … into another year of beautiful changes. Who knew a turtle could fly? … so high, so far, so free…