I was in Maine this past weekend for my birthday, and the start to our journey was not a pleasant one. It was pouring rain the morning we left for the 9 hour drive and it did not stop once throughout the entire trip; my boyfriend commented that it seemed as if we were literally chasing the storm. This was my first time visiting the state and I had envisioned beforehand what Maine would be like - idyllic and quiet, charming and peaceful. I was disappointed to see that at that moment, those four characteristics it most certainly was not.

But when I woke up the next morning, I immediately noticed a sense of calm coming from outside, and heard nothing but the little rustling noises of others in the inn getting ready for their day. Parting the window shades gave me the most glorious view of the harbor below and the mountains beyond, and a drive around the town took us to this bay in the photos you see above, where the lake was completely covered in ice and the sun reflected its beams to create a beautiful glimmer of light.

I stayed rooted to that spot for awhile, appreciating the stillness of the air around me. For someone who has spent her life surrounded by the fast paced sounds of the city, it was wonderful to bask in the moment of near isolation and breathtaking beauty. This small but significant experience only served to strengthen my conviction that nature is one of our world's greatest creative canvases, and it is this constant source of inspiration for which I give mindful thanks each and every day.