Sunday, August 17, 2014

More Summer Love. Last Bits.

This weekend was the first time all summer I was hit with sadness that it is coming to an end all too soon.  I have spent many summers panicked about filling the three glorious months we get with enough to get us through the long winters.  Much like a bear over stuffs itself with berries before hibernation I feel the need to stuff ourselves with all things summer.  This particular summer has been different for me.  I've been able to stay present and simply enjoy without the panic.  I credit getting back into yoga regularly with this ability.  However, this past weekend as I was on the paddle board taking a spin on a breathtaking lake it hit me.  Summer is almost over.  It is the middle of August.  There is only two weeks left until school begins for the girls.  The sadness settled on my heart.  Rather than trying to push it away, I let it stay there for awhile.  I let it soak in that this may be our last camp out.  Knowing soon we would be putting the paddle board back up on the wall in the garage to wait patiently for next summer.  

The sadness didn't last long.  I think it helps to not force the feeling away...let it be what it is and leave on its own.  I found it doesn't stick around as long this way.  Once it left I was able to focus again on what was right in front of me.  Thank goodness for that because what was in front of me was pretty awesome.

Tonight at dinner as we were talking about the weekend, Matt asked the girls what was their favorite part about camping.  Both answered with kayaking and roasting marshmallows.  A small lake like we were at was perfect for kayaking.  There was only one area where we couldn't see so Ava could go out all on her own on the kayak and explore.  I would watch her on the other end of the lake gazing in the water and I wondered what was going through her mind.  As she is getting older I find her quiet and lost in her own thoughts more.  I get it...one of my favorite parts of camping is slowly paddling around on the water as well.  Alone with your thoughts.    

As for roasting marshmallows, this has never been on the top of my camping list.  However, lately we have been adding fresh raspberries to our S'mores and this definitely stepped it up. 

I can't really pick what would be my favorite thing about camping.  It is so many things.  I love being away from everything in the real world.  Getting out in the mountains and feeling like all we need to get by for the weekend fits in our Subaru.  (One very stuffed Subaru which includes the dog up front with me.)  It reminds me of how simple  it is to be happy.  I love eating everything cooked over the fire.  I love the quiet and calm.  I love the togetherness.  Often when camping we may each do our own thing.  The girls exploring, Matt on the board, me reading...but we are close.  I love how big the sky looks when there are no city lights blocking the stars.  And seeing shooting stars fly across the sky and feeling very small in the grand scheme of things.  It makes me feel very lucky.  I don't believe I could pick a favorite thing.  

Although, that first cup of coffee during the quiet mountain morning is right on the top of my list.  The sun peeking out and breathing in the glorious first bits of fresh air. 

It also could be on my favorite list because it takes so much longer making coffee over the fire than in a coffee maker.  

I have hopes we may be able to squeeze one more camp trip in. If I have hope each thing we do isn't the last time for this summer than I can keep that sad feeling from creeping back in.  

Other things I hope to have more of in the next two weeks...
Hiking with my girls-


These girls are turning into quite the hikers and this makes my heart so happy.  During the beginning of our relationship Matt and I hiked all the time.  We would spent so many weekends trekking up mountains, pushing each other and learning about one another.  Those memories are so special to me and to see our girls embrace this hobby of ours is awesome.  You may be sick of hiking photos from me, but these memories are too important to me to leave out...



We live in such a beautiful place and I try to embrace it.  Having grown up here, I can easily take it for granted.  I do believe that is another reason I love hiking and camping so much...it is a gentle reminder to myself of the beauty that surrounds us here.  It forces you to look up and take in the splendor around you and appreciate it.  And, you don't just get it anywhere...you have to work for it with a hike up a trail or a drive to the secluded camp spot.  Of course we see the mountains right from our front yard, but you don't get their full attention unless you get out and play in them.  

I hope for plenty more swimming...


Whether it's in the city pool, our little blow up or a mountain lake I want to splash in the water with my fish.  

I hope for sunlit evenings that call for after dinner strolls...


Soon enough it will be dark early in the evening and school bedtimes will call for after dinner board games rather than ice cream treats and wandering.  I will miss this.

Two more weeks.  I may not feel panicky about it,  but soaking-up-last-bits-of-summer is Game On.  Bring it.