We have been trying to enjoy the soft, silent beauty of this winter season when it’s not minus degrees. We bundle ourselves and the dog up (yes, he has a coat AND boots for the extra frozen days) and trek through the woods for some fresh air and refreshment. It’s a different world during these winter months and it feels good to get out and enjoy it when we can. It’s really not so bad when you are prepared. I’ll take scarves, hats, mittens and sweaters any day over the sticky hot of a sweltering summer day. Find the good in all seasons and you’ll always have something to look forward to.
Matthew, Ollie, and I decided to start out August right by treating ourselves to a quiet, relaxing vacation to the Upper Peninsula. We found a simple, newly updated 100-year old cabin for rent on a small lake. Our favorite part was the amazing deck overlooking the water. There’s something so refreshing about eating your meals as you look out onto the peaceful ripples of the lake. We would definitely go back.
It was only in the high 60’s to low 70’s, so we didn’t have the chance to swim in the lake. The cabin did include two kayaks though and I wish we could still venture out every day. Dipping your paddle into the cool water as the sun is setting is my kind of way to end a day. On our last night there, we followed a beaver or otter through the lily pads for at least 15 minutes. This trip has awakened a dream in both of us to someday have a cabin of our own on a quiet lake.
Ollie really loved the peaceful setting to relax and go for long walks down the wooded road without lots of scary noises and sights he’s not really into here in the city. He liked seeing deer, butterflies, and birds instead. He says he would go back too!
I like the fresh feeling a new year brings, another chance to live and experience, a time to reflect and make changes where they are needed. There are things I want and need to make happen this year so I am hoping 2013 treats us well.
Life is always interesting, isn’t it? Some years incredible, others with deep disappointment, hurts, loss. Joys and sorrows, balancing each other out. Of course I know it is those hard times that help us to grow, to become stronger, to understand ourselves and others in new, better ways. We need difficulties to fully appreciate the beautiful moments in our lives. Though knowing this doesn’t ever seem to make it easier during those not so great moments.
Sometimes it’s easy to let yourself be overwhelmed with the pain and wrong in life. To feel hopeless and small, wondering how just you can do anything to leave this world a better place. I love this quote from Mother Teresa:
“I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.”
The small things make all the difference–a smile, a note of thanks, a kind word. Tiny gestures of kindness we all have time for, no matter how busy life gets. One of my goals for this year is to just make it happen. So often I think of something I should do, something that I know would brighten another’s day. Yet I use the excuse of busyness, of being tired, losing my energy and motivation. We don’t always know what someone else is going through, when someone is having a bad day–imagine how they might feel by just your simple act of kindness. I want the people in my life to feel loved and appreciated, to spread little moments of joy when I can. So that, I suppose, is my New Year’s Resolution: to stop making excuses, and make things happen!
2012 was not my favorite year…but sharing a picture of the best part that makes me smile and laugh all the time up above.