How I Define Peaceful

This week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge was titled “Peaceful“, and featured a picture of an isolated beach surrounded by a rising ocean tide.  For me, the word ‘peaceful’ has always conjured up the sound of running water: falling rain, babbling brooks, etc.  For as long as I can remember, I have always found the sound and sight of waterfalls to be relaxing, and having the opportunity to be near one was always a highlight of my youth.  I spent a good part of my childhood growing up in Iceland, and loved taking trips to go and see the many waterfalls the island featured.

A few years ago, my mother and I took a small vacation together, visiting a few quilt shops by day and spending the nights in a bed and breakfast.  On the last day of our trip, our travels took us to Rockford, Illinois, to visit the Japanese Anderson Gardens.  I have had an ongoing love affair with Oriental/Asian art for years, and could not think of a better way to end our trip than with a visit to one of the most beautiful gardens in the state (the Botanical Gardens are also well worth a visit).  Naturally, it was raining when we arrived.  Instead of giving up, my mother and I walked through the gardens anyways, the rain soaking our clothing but not dampening our spirits.  The garden was just as aesthetically pleasing as I had hoped it would be, and we both enjoyed ourselves immensely.  The photo I have included within this blog post is one that my mother took during our visit to the Japanese Gardens, featuring one of the many waterfalls to be found throughout the garden’s layout.  This picture captures my definition of the word ‘peaceful’, as well as continues to be a reminder of one of the most memorable afternoons of my life.

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