Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.

Desperately seeking smiles


We’ve had it rough around here for a few weeks. Though the trees are bursting with color and we had a series of beautiful sunny and above average warm days, no one here was enjoying it.

Katie under the ginko tree with leaves falling in the early morning light.

That’s because husband, brother-in-law who was staying with us, and I all tested positive for Covid a little over two weeks ago.

Yep, no matter that we’d been careful, limited our travel to only necessary trips, washed our hands incessently, wore masks everywhere.

A young cardinal stops for breakfast.

We still ended up with the virus.

And worse, my brother-in-law didn’t survive. So on top of feeling tired with achey muscles and never ending coughs we had to work our way through grief and funeral arrangements.

That early morning light makes her glow.

Now that I’m feeling better, I am recognizing that there were a lot of moments, in amongst the heartache and chaos, that made me smile.

Neighbors and family leapt to help us, doing our grocery shopping, picking up Katie’s perscription from her vet, dropping off cases of water and snacks and flowers and fruit and fully cooked meals.

Red Bellied woodpecker enjoys a snack on the go.

And did I mention soup? We got lots of chicken noodle soup; it’s true that chicken noodle soup is good for the soul. We are proof of that.

Everybody gets into the breakfast act.

Even now that things are settling down we are getting numerous messages and texts, calls and emails from concerned family and friends.

The katsura tree dropped all her leaves at once too.

Covid is a scary, dangerous and unpredictable thing. But it’s possible to smile even in the midst of it if you’re as lucky as we are to have wonderful people surrounding you in love.

Are you pointing that lens at me, lady?

Images are from our backyard these past few days. Lots of smiling there too.

Even our first frost made me smile.

Author: dawnkinster

I'm a long time banker having worked in banks since the age of 17. I took a break when I turned 50 and went back to school. I graduated right when the economy took a turn for the worst and after a year of library work found myself unemployed. I was lucky that my previous bank employer wanted me back. So here I am again, a long time banker. Change is hard.

52 thoughts on “Desperately seeking smiles

  1. I am sorry for your loss. My prayers for your recovery from this virus.


  2. Smiles are what we need to hang on to and even small rays of sunshine in these dark times. Sending love to you and Bruce.


  3. My condolences. I hope that you’re taking extra gentle care of yourselves now. Again, I’m sorry for your loss.


  4. I’m so sorry you had to go through this. I’m so sorry you lost a family member due to the ineptitude of the idiot in charge. Hopefully you will be smiling again soon.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Mary. We might have lost him sometime this year, or next anyway, but we wouldn’t have lost him this week, that’s for sure. We are smiling with memories now, and because of all the wonderful people sending us support. Like you.


  5. Good grief, what you have been through. So sorry and at same time thankful you & husband are now better. All the best wishes for continued complete recovery. Immunity would be a bonus too.


    • We think immunity is something we’re due, but we’re a little nervous that maybe we aren’t immune forever. I think there needs to be more study on that, so we’re going to be careful for the foreseeable future.


  6. Prayers answered that you’re both on the mend! I’m sorry you had to go through this, but I’m encouraged to feel the love of your family and friends in its midst. And what splendid shots you’ve shared with us — those pictures of Princess Katie glowing make me smile, too!


  7. So very, very sorry. What a terrible loss! How heavy your hearts must be. So glad to read family and friends have been looking after you. Also, that you and your husband have survived this terrible virus. Healing thoughts and best wishes from Maine.


  8. I’m so sorry for your loss! Glad you and your husband are on the mend though.


  9. I am very sorry for your loss. It is an awful thing. I’m glad you are feeling better, though I know the grief will still be going on for a while. It is great that the community pulled together to help you in your time of need – it’s a bit of light when all seems dark. Good to have some nature in your back yard. The woodpecker shot is great 🙂


  10. I know words cannot convey how sorry I am for your loss. I pray that you & your husband are healing well and quickly. I know that Katie will keep her eye on you and give you snuggles & love. I am encouraged to hear you have a close knit community helping you in your time of need. I’m happy to see you are still taking lovely photos; being out with Mother Nature has healing properties. Take care of yourselves.


    • Thank you Connie. Yes,our backyard has provided hours of entertainment while we’ve been confined to the house. Katie is a big help getting us outdoors too, as she requires regular yard inspections and visits to her tomato garden.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Dawn–I am so sorry for all you have gone through. Grief in addition to illness…that is almost too much. You have wonderful neighbors and their love made me smile. Take care of yourself.


  12. Dawn…I was shocked to read this and so sorry for your loss of your brother in law and that you and your husband were ill. Grateful you are okay and for the good friends who helped you through it.
    I have to ask…your brother in law…it seems with the timeline you shared that he died quickly. All the more shocking. Did he have risk factors? That is a personal question I know, but I think I’m not alone in wanting to better understand this disease. Ben and I are out and about a lot more then we probably should be but hard to avoid with our lifestyle.
    Blessings to you both for good health.


    • Yes, he did have many health and risk factors. He was in the hospital this last time 10 days after he tested positive, so it was very quick.


      • I’m so sorry. I did read that you had worried about him the last year. But yes, so shocking to be so sudden. Also agree there is so much we still don’t know, like whether or not it brings immunity. Take good care of yourselves. You have a great attitude.


  13. I am so glad you were able to find a few smiles during your challenging weeks. It’s odd how smiles can unexpectedly appear even in the midst of grief. (Am thinking of moments of genuine laughter during my dad’s funeral week.) Can not imagine all the emotions you must have experienced. I thought of you almost every day. Glad you are feeling better.


  14. Oh Dawn… my heart is sick for you. I am so very sorry for your loss. I am glad that you are surrounded with love in all ways …right now.
    Take care of yourself my friend!


  15. So so sorry that the Virus claimed your brother in law. I do hope that you and your husband make a full recovery. Sending snowy smiles from Minnesnowda!


  16. So sorry for your loss. Hold on to the smiles. Take care on your road to recovery.


  17. My deepest condolences, and may these smiles and warm wishes soothe your soul a tiny bit. Praying for a full recovery for you and hubby. These are rough times, and thank you so much for sharing. Your photos always brighten my day and make me smile. 😀 Take care! ❤️❤️❤️


  18. Oh my gosh, Dawn. I’m so sorry for the loss of your brother in law, what a shock. Im sure you did everything right, and you still got Covid. Im glad you are on the mend and healing. My prayers for you and your for peace, smiles and emotional recovery. Thank goodness for your friends and family.


  19. Dawn, I’ve been thinking of you and Bruce and wondering how you’re doing. Sending virtual smiles and hugs and sunshine — xxxooo


  20. Dawn great shots as usual. Great to see your pup in there too. My dog Toro is frequently trying to steal the show in my shots.


  21. I am so sorry, Dawn! I’m so so sorry for the heartbreak that this year has held for you, and so many others. May you continue to heal, and may smiles return, in time.


  22. I thought you were just editing pictures or on a prolonged camping trip.
    You’ve been on trip alright. To Hell and back. My condolences to you and Bruce. How ravaged and exhausted you both must be. Shell shocked, I imagine.
    I’m glad you never lost touch of your optimism and gratitude, it can push you throw dark times.


  23. Pingback: The Weekly Smile Recap 10/19 – 10/25/2020 | Trent's World (the Blog)

  24. I am so sorry for your loss. And for your illness.

    I am so moved that you have chosen to share your sadness, and also the things that have brought you comfort.

    It is stories like yours which bring home truly what a challenging time we find ourselves, which inspire us to look beyond what we think we know and see.

    Sending you best wishes for continued recovery of body & soul.

    P/S I found my way to you through Trent’s The Weekly Smile.


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