One year Ago

Wow, it have been one year since I starting this blog. Back than I was just getting out of a long-term relationship and I did not even knew at that time.  I starting this blog on May 26, 2013 the day right after my 11 year anniversary with my ex husband. At the time, I was emotionally a mess dealing with the fact that I was force to live on my own for the first time in my life.  Well, yes I got marry at 19-year-old and was living with my parents when I got marry. So at the time, I look to ways to keep my spirit up and I found it in hiking and traveling around NC natural parks. It was after spending my anniversary alone without hearing a word from my ex-husband ,which at the time he lie to me, that is when I started this blog. Yes, he lie and told me the separation was for a short period of time and he wanting me to get help. Any way at the time, I was believed the words from friends and family that he still care for me. Later it became clear that those friends was siding with him, lying to me, and digging for information.  My family were believed the lie coming from my ex husband except for my father.  When I was able to talk with my father about everything, my father supported me.

So hiking was my way of refocus my attention on having fun instead of thinking about hard reality that I were facing on not being able to see my children and losing the family life I had built up for 11 years. I had to rediscover who I was away from the mother of … and wife of … It was clean at the time, I had a hard time explaining my life to others without bring up my children and ex-husband. I enjoy hiking and taking photos so much I was able put aside  the pain and hurt for a time being.  It was a nice break from reality and it give my body time to feel at peace. Due to all the hardship I was going through it cause anxiety and depression so much I could not sleep and eat. I was able to talk with a therapist and the therapist was very impressed with measure I was doing on my own to feel better.  She said I was a strong woman and most women dealing with that level of depression would have giving up and put themselves in a home.

Now it have been a year, I am over my depression and moving on with my life. The fun adventures I had with hiking in NC had help me to get to this point.  I am a lot stronger now.  I am living with my parents again but I am working and saving up so I can be independent and not have to depend on others. I love my new life. I may not have my children but I am not going to stress out about something that is out of my control.  Instead I am focus on prepared for college to get my Ph.D. and to one day work for the EPA.  I have high goals that keep me from looking down.  I have no time to look back at my past because I am moving forward.

Fall Lake Hike with Hiking Group

On Jan. 12, 2014, I went hiking with the hiking group I am apart of.  Here are some pictures from my hike that day. I love the fact that now I am using Photoshop to edit the photo.  I am able to get more blue sky in my pictures.  On such a sunny day, most of the time my photo never turn out looking like a sunny day before I edit them.

Morgan Creek Trail

Morgan Creek Trail

Hey, it had been a long time since I had the time to hike.  However, today I went on a little walk on Morgan Creek Trail in Chapel Hill, NC.  I have been meaning to get out more, however, life has away of messing up plans. This time I found a place that is walking distance, so it will be easy for me to not make excuses. Half the time, I talk myself out of it and one of the reason is the amount of gas I will spend to a location. It just mean I need to become better at not letting my emotion of the moment take over.  Sometimes it mean kicking myself and telling myself to stop making excuses and pushing forward.

Wild Cotton

After I got over myself, I was able to enjoy being outside surrounding by the sound of birds singing and the nice cool air against my legs ( I was wearing shorts :D). I love this new trail because of the wild cotton plants.  This was the first time I have seen wild cotton outside of pictures.  There was a field full of different flowers, berries, and wild cotton so their was lots of different types of birds.  Now birds are hard to take pictures of, so the best thing I can say is you must see for yourself.

For those who are wonder why I focused so much on observe natural instead of the miles that I walk.  The reason why is because I am more of a naturalist.  In a way, it is fun to observe and I naturally look at life from a scientist point of view. So I am one of those who take their time hiking on a trail. Hiking is not my only way of exercise which I will leave it as that. 😛

flowers 1

My Artwork

I am an artist. I created works of art.  After a few of my hiking trips, I painting some beautiful art.  I remember how I felt at that time when I took some of the pictures and painting the scene on the canvas.  I had so much fun with it, I have decide to try to introduce my artwork to the world.  I have been painting since high school.  It have been a hobby for me.  Below I have post some pictures of my artwork.  I hope  to display my artwork in galleries and cafe.  Please contact me if you have an interest in my paintings.

hargis_01_chaoticoflightanddark

Title: Chaotic of Light and Dark
Media: Acrylics Paint
dimensions:  28” by 30”
Artist: Maria Hargis

Chaotic of Light and Dark was a piece I did in high school.  It was a time when I had mix emotions.  My parents divorce so it was a hard time for me. I am the oldest out of six kids so my talents was ignored by my parents.

hargis_03_greenflowerelf

Title: Green Flower Elf
Media: Acrylics Paint
Dimension: 8” by 10”
Artist: Maria Hargis

Green Flower Elf was a piece I did recent. I just had the wanting to paint so all I could think of was a green elf.  I had fun painting this one because I was playing around with the colors.  It remember me of Easter because every year I try to make the goldest eggs.

hargis_05_hawrivermay

Title: Haw River May
Media: Acrylics Paint
Dimension: 20” by 16”
Artist: Maria Hargis

Haw River May was a piece that I did right after a hiking trip with a group of hikers. I enjoy going hiking so much that I was so excited I painting the Haw River. I remember the wind against my back as I took that picture. I love the smells of the river. It was a calming and peaceful moment that I wanting to caption it. So I put all of my emotions that I had at that time into the painting.

hargis_07_enobutterfly

Title: Eno Butterfly
Media: Acrylics Paint
Dimension: 11”by 14”
Artist: Maria Hargis

Eno Butterfly is a piece when I painting a butterfly. I took a picture of a butterfly at Eno River State Park with my phone and I thought it would be cool to paint it. I love butterfly and enjoy all kinds of them. I love painting and most of the time I have a hard time expression my emotions to other; however, I am good at expression my emotion in my work of art.

hargis_02_forestfloor

Title: Forest Floor
Media: Acrylics Paint
Dimension: 8”by 10”
Artist: Maria Hargis

Forest Floor is a piece that I did after a few hiking trips. Forest Floor to me are magical because there is so much life in them. I have a deep appreciation for them because of my background in biological engineering. Scientist used microorganisms and fungus to treat hazardous material and waste in a process called bioremediation. They converted the material into something else that is not hazardous.

hargis_04_wsbutterfly

Title: WS Butterfly
Media: Acrylics Paint
Dimension: 14” by 6”
Artist: Maria Hargis

WS Butterfly is a piece I did after I move to NC. I had just started schooling at NC A&T State University. I was amazed on how many butterflies was around the area. I could not believe how beautiful NC was. I enjoy most of my free time outdoor and learned a lot about the wildlife and plant-life around the area.

hargis_06_westenodam

Title: West Eno Dam
Media: Acrylics Paint
Dimension: 14” by 11”
Artist: Maria Hargis

West Eno Dam is an another piece I did after hiking. West Eno Park is one of  the public parks in Durham, NC. There was so many turtles out there ( I wish I could have taken a good picture of them and paint them). It was a gloomily day but watching the water go over the dam made up for it.

If you are interested in my artwork in your place of business, please contact me.  Or if you are interested in buying a piece or want for me to create something for you, please contact me.  Or if you like what you see, feel free to comment.  This is a learning process for me so any feedback is good.

Jordan Lake State Park (Part 2:Ebenezer Church Trail/Parkers Creek Beach)

Ebenezer Church Trail

After spend the whole morning hours at New Hope Lookout, I hiked on Ebenezer Church Trail inside Ebenezer Church Recreation Area at Jordan Lake State Park. The forecast for the day says that it would rain.  As I walked toward the trail it look like rain was about to come down but as soon as I got on the trail. There was no rain in view.  I was so blessed with sunshine and a nice cool fresh. The forest floor look so beautiful it was like I was in a fairy tale with green cover and sun rays coming down from the sky through the canopy.

I may come back to this location in June because their might be more frogs around the area due to all of the waterways.  I like looking for frogs in the morning time because they move very slow because they are cold-blooded.  They are easier to catch on camera, too. By the way, I am took all of these picture using my phone.  I do not have the money to buy a digital high quality camera. I work with what I have and I make it work.

The way I picked what trail I am going to hike has to do with if the trail is near a water source. Wildlife are more active around water sources such as wetlands, ponds, or lakes.  All living things need water.  Most common animals that I see around ponds and lakes are turtles, snakes, dragonflies, frogs, ducks, and etc.

rat snake

On that day, I saw a rat snake and a Copperhead snake. The rat snake was on the ground around the pond while the Copperhead snake was hiding in the pond near the surface. The Copperhead snake came pretty close to me. I was minded my own busy trying to take pictures of minnows when the Copperhead snake decide it wanted to be part of the photo shoot. I guess Copperhead want to be movies stars, too.

Copperhead Snake

After that I finish hiking Ebenezer trail so I went to check out Seaforth trail. However, the trail was close.  I really looked forward to the wetland boardwalk, I guess I have to try it another time. So I went to Parkers Creek Recreation Area and hanged out on the beach.  I found a cool spot to put my feet in the water and enjoyed the beautiful day. I don’t know if there is a sign on my back that say I am good with kids because for some reason there is always this one kid that come up to me and want to tell me about something that they saw was cool. So  that is how I ending my day at Jordan Lake. It was fun and I saw lots of cool things.

I think this is an awesome picture I took of a pond on Ebenezer Church Trail.

I think this is an awesome picture I took of a pond on Ebenezer Church Trail.