Sunday, September 28, 2014

Acadia

If you've spent any time reading this little blog, you're well aware that my family and I have a love affair with the coast of Maine. Last week we spent five nights camping at Blackwoods Campground in Acadia National Park. We could hear the fog horn and lobster boats as we were snuggled in our sleeping bags, and the scent of campfire mixed with salt air will forever hold a special place in our hearts. We marveled at the power of waves as they crashed against slabs of pink granite. We stood in awe of mountains. We gasped at the sight of a lighthouse standing on the cliff, so perfectly picture postcard Maine it might make you sick if it wasn't so beautiful. 

Our timing was perfect, both weather wise and in our school year. The kids and I needed a break and time to reevaluate how our year has been going thus far, what changes need to be made, what to drop and leave behind and what to focus on. Every year a few weeks into the "school year" I find that I need to back off on what I think the kids need to be learning, and focus on their strengths and interests in order to keep everyone happy and learning and thriving. A bit of perspective is never a bad idea.

In any case.... back to Acadia. The weather was beautiful. Chilly nights, but days warmed by the sun and sweaters. We seemed to do a bit of everything: Sand Beach, the Ocean Walk, Thunder Hole, Bar Harbor, the Ship Harbor Trail, Bass Harbor Light, Seawall for a picnic, Eagle Lake, hiked South Bubble Mountain and tried to knock over Balance Rock- like thousands of other we were unsuccessful, Jordon Pond and Seal Cove. 

Last night I stood in the shower and as the hot water ran down from my head to my feet I could almost see a layer of soot from the campfires fall down my skin. As the smell of woods and fire escaped down the shower drain it I closed my eyes and wished for a moment that it wouldn't all wash off. That it would stay. And so, I won't wash my sweater that I wore half the week, at least for a while. I'll hold onto the smell and the memories of snuggling in close with my husband on chilly mornings, listening to the campground come alive. Until next time... and there most certainly will be a next time. Oh Acadia, you have added countless lines to the love poem we are writing back and forth with the coast of Maine.


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If you've signed up for Writing Naturally: October, you'll get an extra dose of Acadia as I'm planning on using many of the photos in my daily emails. 
Registration is open for one more week. 
We begin on October 6th...

Friday, September 19, 2014

and the winner....

This morning I used a random number generator {I tried to copy and paste, but the formatting went all wonky....} and the winner is comment #7 - Sarah!! Congratulations!

I hope the rest of you will still consider joining me for Writing Naturally: October. Registration will be open until October 5th!

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And now... I'm off to pack up sleeping bags and extra warm clothes for a week at Acadia National Park. Have a great week! 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Busy

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This morning I'm slowly sipping my tea. The shower hasn't started, we're all lazing around in our pajamas. We have no place to be, except possibly the library later to exchange books. This morning is a deep sigh of relief after a busy start to the week. 

Busy. 

I don't utter that word often. We lead a purposefully un-busy life. It's part of why we homeschool. It's part of why I say no often. It is intentional. It works best for our family. For all of us. When we get too busy things begin to fall apart. There's disconnect. 

So when we are busy, it is not the norm. I forget that busy is the new normal for many. I often hear: "yeah, but that's life. We're all busy." 

It doesn't have to be that way.  Yes, we all have stuff going on. There's always laundry to do. Projects underway. That stuff is life, sure. But not busy. Busy doesn't make a life more or less meaningful. I understand that it's not often a choice, but sometimes it is. That's the kind of busy I'm talking about. The kind of busy that gets worn like a badge of honor. It fills life to the edges. Some people thrive on that, but not all of us. I like a lot of room around my edges.

The first few days of our week were unusually busy. Today I'm glad for some breathing room, for regular life to continue. The burst of busy energy  has gone back into the occasional closet, where it belongs. Not in the forefront of our lives. 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Look up

Today I looked up. I looked up and saw a new pair of boots worn by a six year old who swayed her hips as she walked, proud of her horse back riding heels. I saw the blue of the sky, the white of the clouds, shingle siding and in a mirror I saw woman who is tired. Who is happy. Today I looked up from stirring the pot on the stove to see eyes begging to help. I looked up and saw a boy who sniffled his way to my side for most of the day, I smelled his hair. I looked down. Today I looked down and saw heads closer to my arm pits than I care to admit, their length astonishing. I looked down and spent an hour playing cards on a granny square blanket in the sunshine. I looked down and saw his smile. Her smile. Them. Today I looked, and I saw beauty.

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in response to day two of Poetry in Everyday Beauty...

Monday, September 8, 2014

quiet light

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There's quiet in September. In the wind. In routine. In rhythm. There's quiet mornings and moments even through hurried afternoons of to and fro and the in between. There's quiet in the soft light of breakfast, the fading shades of evening. There's quiet light in September. The hush of sunlight...


in response to the first prompt of Poetry in Everyday Beauty...

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Embrace October {a month early!}

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October is a special month in our house. Both my husband and I celebrate birthdays... the leaves change... the air is crisp... and we fall in love with our surroundings yet again. We spend more time outside, we pick pumpkins, inside we bake and decorate, it is a colorful season that calls to be celebrated. To be written about. October inspires stories and creativity and activity before the natural hibernation that occurs in the coming months. Lets embrace October. 

This morning I'm opening registration for Writing Naturally: October, an online freewriting course. For two weeks, October 6-17th, we'll focus on writing. Freely, and then more structured. It will be part email instruction, part coaching, all gentle nudging and support. 

Head over to the Writing Naturally: October page for more registration and more information! 

**If you'd like a chance to win a spot in Writing Naturally: October, simply leave a comment on this post. I'll choose a name at random on September 19th!**