Monday, September 22, 2014

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Happy First Day of Autumn!

This is it for me. I absolutely adore this time of the year. October is right around the corner, and I am so ready. Bring on the pumpkins, apples, flannel shirts, harvest scented candles, and crisp, cool air! I'm trying to hold off on my first pumpkin flavored something for another couple of weeks. Typically I get started on the pumpkin craze early and have overdone it way before the season ends!

We treated ourselves to two nights in the Green Mountain State this past week, after a summer saturated with love and loss. We needed to get away and hold each other close, and no better place to do it in our eyes, than Vermont!

We spent our getaway in the southern part of the state, an area new to me. Though I spent my college years in northern Vermont and still make the trek once a year (at least) to our beloved cabin and university town, somehow in my travels I've simply whizzed past this part! Boy, was I missing a lot. It is so beautiful in the surrounding areas of Dover, Newfane, Wilmington, and Brattleboro.

Note: The Brattleboro Food Co-Op is to die for. The endless bulk aisles...

I'm so glad that Vermont has stayed a part of my life, so many years after I finished my undergraduate schooling.  The cabin is the main reason this has been possible, and we look forward to going there every holiday season (just a couple of months away! Cabin countdown begins). It was fun to explore a new area and balance our sense of familiarity and home that we have at the cabin with some adventure, tourism, and total relaxation (no cooking or cleaning!)

Living is simple (I didn't say easy!) up there in the country, and so much of the day to day involves love and respect for the outdoors. It's clear how this lifestyle shapes the value system and allows for a more natural existence in the world, and this is what really draws us in. There is a connection, a sense of belonging and meaning that we struggle to find where we live now.

Just a couple of months and we'll be back up that way, enjoying the holidays in a snow covered cabin! We can't wait!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Planning in the Present

I think Bob and I are rounding the corner towards something really, really good.  To pull it off will require organization, discipline, creativity, patience, motivation, and the ability to stay true to ourselves and our dreams. Staying present, too, is a task that has to be done in order to plan for the future,  even though it sounds contradictory (and is one of my biggest struggles). I guess how it plays into our 'plan' is being able to slow down, stay, and see the bigger picture. Having a plan is one thing, how that idea resonates with me right now is even more exciting.

I'm reading a really great book that I just happened upon at the library the other day. It's called Magical Journey: An Apprenticeship in Contentment (by Katrina Kenison). It's about seeking, but at the same time realizing what we already have inside and cultivating a life that is right for each of us.  I'd do a terrible job of describing it any more than that, and it will have more meaning for you if you discover the story for yourself. Show your library some love and have a look!

Many times when I find myself amidst the quiet of the day, a big fat case of the 'shoulds' creeps up on me. I 'should be' running, I 'should be' cleaning, I 'should be moving' All The Time. What a prison! This morning, as the cat sleeps under the bed and I sit and think and write, I'm realizing that I am doing enough. Right now, this moment. This is what I am doing.

I am (we are) constantly surrounded by doers. Doing is great! Lots of things Get Done. And of course, we can't 'do nothing' (which doesn't really exist, right?) all the time, but I'm talking about overdoing, overthinking, over scheduling. It's easy to think and feel that I'm not doing enough if I'm not baking cookies, running a marathon, making DIY holiday decorations, and putting together the perfect outfit all at the same time. This is what I need to get away from.  This is not me.

Sitting here listening to the rain, enjoying the quiet morning ... is.