October 20th, 2018

nature red forest leaves

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Today in North Idaho it is sunny-ish with a high of 63°. My current location started out pretty foggy but ended up sunny and the perfect temp to go walk around town and visit shops.  You know the kind of shopping in which you buy absolutely nothing but enjoy yourself immensely by simply communicating with others and generally seeing what shopkeepers find to be the next big thing. I did find a few annual planners that I thought my daughter would like but decided I was unsure of the size she would need so I passed.  Sometimes it is nice to pass.

I find that at this point in my life I pass on a lot of things.  I mean, don’t get me wrong, I am a very social person and have stimulating people in my life.  I just mean that I no longer feel that I MUST participate.  I used to feel that if I didn’t join in then I would be ostracized.  I would find myself doing thing that I didn’t really enjoy year after year thinking Why Am I Doing This!?!?  Most of the time there were activities that I felt were personally unhealthy or people that I thought were unhealthy.  Unhealthy in lots of ways like they drink or smoke to much, they cheat on their spouses, they ignore or avoid their children, they look down on others and generally feel they are to good for people.  And how on earth are you a good person if you’re not in ONE of those groups.  Either your a good person or your a bad person… or are you just a person trying to figure it out!

It was just a lot of energy in the wrong direction.  So today I think long and hard before I commit to a project.  I make sure the time I’ll be giving works for my lifestyle.  I make sure I can give the project what it needs and vise versa.  I’m looking for connection and service coupled with smiles and a betterment of myself and whatever project I’ve jumped in on.  And things happen that are unexpected and that’s okay.  I’m okay with riding out the curves because nothing and no one is perfect.  I’m also okay with saying No Thank You and I Don’t Have The Extra Time.

Today take a moment to know your limits.  Yes, push your comfort zone but know how far you’re willing to go and know that you can and will find the next exit if that is to the betterment of all concerned.  Embrace the life that you create!

 

 

 

October 19th, 2018

Bike and Basket

Fill your basket!!

Today in North Idaho it is sunny with a high of 62°. My current location has a high of 62° and I am grateful to slow down, unwind and catch up.  It seems doubtful that the sun will make an appearance but what the weather lacks in light it more than makes up for in fog!  Tea anyone!?!?

The last few days I have been flying by the seat of my pants.  No true plans except to move forward and enjoy the road and the countryside.  I had not been to the beach in a few years so knew I would need to make that trip happen.  The weather did not disappoint and the sand and water were actually warm.  The ocean air is so calming.  I observed that many people brought their blankets to spread out and lay on.  Several men brought chairs to sit in by the ocean and initially I thought they might have a line in but in fact appeared to be sleeping.  That really speaks volumes as to the relaxing nature of the ocean or water in general.

It is interesting to note that the air seems heavy and yet light at the same time. Even when the beach is busy there is a lack of weighty sea air on your skin.  Laying on the sand and catching a nap still holds the mental equivalent of someone partitioning your small area from everyone else.  It is as if we all have invisible boxes and we all attempt not to invade the other party’s box.  Don’t step on their blanket or towel and don’t kick up sand!!  Beach rules have not changed!

When I was a child living with my grandparents we would make a trek to the beach in an old motor home.  I specifically remember the sea air, sand buckets and shovels, bathing suites with towels hanging on the back of chairs, grandma cooking inside the motor home and grandpa cooking outside over the campfire, seashells of all shapes and sizes everywhere and late night potty breaks using a Folgers Coffee can.  I remember thinking how eating was such a bother when there was so much to do.  Such sweet simple life affirming moments to look back on.  Nothing else mattered and everything was right with the world.

Today I remind you to continue to play in whatever fashion that presents itself to you.  Play so long that you forget to stop and eat.

 

October 18th, 2018

Today in North Idaho it is sunny with a high of 59°.   I am enjoying temperatures in the low 70s and have started down the coast of Washington departing Port Townsend and investigating Crescent Lake Lodge, Moclips Beach and Quinault Lodge. An unexpectedly beautiful day made for some wonderful photos.

There is a whole world beyond your fence.  Go see!!

October 17th, 2018

Today in North Idaho it is sunny with a high of 61°. I have been traveling around Washington and have decided to share some of my photos for the next few days.  Needless to say the weather has been beautiful and I feel blessed to be on an adventure and meeting new people.

Meet someone new today and don’t forget to take your shoes off~

 

October 16th, 2018

Bridge WA

 

Today in North Idaho it is sunny with a high of 59°.  My current location shows a high of 69° and my plan is to get out and explore.  I’ll be making a day trip to Port Townsend and Lake Quinault among other places.  I’ll get a little hiking in and log my steps on my beloved Fitbit.  Of course I will post a picture as part of tomorrow’s blog.

The above photo is of a bridge I discovered while out for a walk yesterday.  This bridge was located off the beaten path and was found accidentally.  I adore these accidents!  Bridges like these inspire me.  Beautiful and secretive they call to me to keep walking until I emerge into the sunshine.  Metaphor?  I think so!  Those first few steps area new and unknown and we have no idea of the structures stability. But we sometimes find ourselves on these bridges and we need to cross however dark and mysterious they seem at the time.  I’ve crossed a few bridges in my life and though I’ve walked in uncertainty and anxiety, I’ve come out a better person for having made the journey.

I suppose life would be pretty boring if I did the same thing the same way all the time.  I do struggle with change regardless.  I like the known elements in life but I also realize that a great deal is out of my control and I sometimes wake up trying to right my path just to find out that the path back is closed.  So I trrrrryyyy to embrace the change.  That is very hard for a person who likes to have a plan.   I try to make choices within the choices I recognize.  Not making a choice is a choice too.  There is an entire group of people who live by the “not making choices” method or make as few decisions as possible.  I mean, they’re alive so there’s that!  Generally though this is not my cup of tea. I like setting goals and making lists and enjoying the feeling of accomplishment.

So today set a goal or make a list.  Something small that you can accomplish today!  Finish all the laundry AND put it away, superglue the handle back on your coffee cup, thin out the kids toy box, bring in the neighbors trash cans!  Then take the written goal that you’ve accomplished and put it in a jar and keep the jar out so that when you walk by it you can get that feel good moment!  Keep adding to it!  Take it out and read all the goals you’ve accomplished if you need a boost.  Read them to your husband or your children or have them start one and continue the positive vibe!!

Keep moving forward!!

October 15, 2018

Flower 2

Today in North Idaho it is sunny with a high of 57°.  I will not return home for a couple of weeks unless I am called back to work, so today I am enjoying sunshine with a high of 65°.  It is nice to travel a short distance and experience a temperature change like this. I’ve lived in North Idaho long enough to appreciate the effects of the weather on the human spirit.  A few days mid winter in a sunny location will fix the doldrums every time.  Another fix is a weekly five to ten minute visit to a tanning bed. Say what you will about tanning beds but I have had years where I couldn’t get out of the area and to someplace warm, and short periodic trips to the tanning bed did the trick.  To each their own!

Today started out slow which is how I like it.  I showered and decided on no make up,  torn jeans, boots and a t-shirt.  I then discovered there was zero coffee in the house so I went for a short drive for a perfect cup of coffee and some ground coffee to go. I like to sit with coffee and pour out my thoughts.  The warmth of the liquid, the taste and smell all seem to motivate my drifting mind.  How many of us have created a sort of muscle memory response with coffee.  Normally we are swilling coffee while getting ready for work or while getting the kids ready for school.  Just that smell makes me think I should be doing something necessary!!  A perfect example of a certain smell and its attachment.  Maybe I should start carrying coffee beans AND Frankincense!!  Possible!

The area that I’m visiting has a pretty serious homeless population.  I always find myself wondering how they got to the point of living on the streets.  Of course the first logical thought is drugs.  I also know that mental health issues are another problem and that often drugs and mental health issues go hand in hand.  The homeless have no age discrimination.  I drove past a “tent city” and there was a twenty something and a sixty something sitting outside of a cluster of tents looking very dirty and tired. I consider their safety and health.  I consider what possibly lead up to this moment and if they are happy with that life.  I wonder why it is that I didn’t end up living a similar life.

It takes a village.  I lived with my grandparents from third grade to middle school.  I can truly say that they saved my life.  I came to them after living with my mother and her abuse boyfriend where I heard and saw more than a young child should.  I literally asked if I could go live with my grandparents when I was seven years old.  I knew the life I was living was not “normal” and I desperately wanted normal.  I remember sitting on the stairs listening to my mother through the wall and waiting for the right moment to ask.  When the time came she immediately agreed and a phone call was made the next day.  My grandparents wasted no time in collecting me and do not recall being upset or sad about leaving my mother’s house.  I remember being relieved and feeling safe.

My grandmother might not have realized what she got herself into in hindsight.  Though if she did it never showed.  She loved me unconditionally.  I didn’t sleep through the night when I first came to her.  I had night terrors.  Sit up in bed, scream at the top of my lungs, uncontrollable crying fits of terror.  My grandmother was up for the challenge with a slow patience that still boggles me today.  Slowly she would help me find the light switch.  Slowly she would lead me to the window to open it so fresh air would come in.  Softly she would whisper to me how much she loved me.  Fierce she would hold me until I went back to sleep.  All of this she would repeat more times than I can count and in that time she would save me over and over again until I could sleep through the night without ending up in her bed.  She was a walking talking miracle and she died without knowing this truth.

So my gift to you is to know your people.  The people who know your direction and keep you on a positive path with love and support.  You will always have work to do and surrounding yourself with the right people is key to your success.  Let them know right now!  Now is the time to let them know!

 

October 14th, 2018

IMG_0722

Today in North Idaho it is sunny with a high of 52° but I’m coming to you from somewhere on the coast of Washington from an Amtrak train.  My sleeper car is a dream travel experience.  As you can see by the picture above, I have this space all to myself and I am enjoying a nice cup of Joe.  The train is remarkably quiet considering all of its passengers.  The scenery is spectacular this time of year with all the fall colors on display.  It seems as though Mother Nature is rocking me with these fastened steel rails as the world rolls by.  Truly a great way to travel!!

For those of you who have not had the opportunity to ride a train yet, here are a few key points that make it a unique experience.  As a train passenger you have advantageous views only afforded to those riding the rails.  Even if you have driven the highway route along the train tracks, the train has a whole new perspective and without the tension of traffic.  Most trains offer a viewing car, dining car, and often times you will have a commissary car.  If you have a fidgety disposition like myself then getting up and stretching your legs is a great way to break up a trip.

The dining care is an unparalleled experience that I always look forward to.  The hostess directs you to a table where you know no one.  That’s right!   You sit and dine with perfect strangers and it is an experience everyone should try.  Large elongated windows on both sides of the dining car provide gorgeous panoramic views while you are served breakfast, lunch and dinner on most routes. Today I am seated at a table with three women traveling together.  Three generations taking a train trip just for the experience and as a chance to reconnect.  It was marvelous to speak to daughter, mother and grandmother.  A jovial group of women all willing to be present in our family-dining experience.  After introductions, we shared our stories in a way that was unguarded and unique over a delicious breakfast.  I will not soon forget these beautiful acquaintances and hope to reconnect from time to time in the future.  Amtrak gets all the points in my book for promoting these opportunities.

After breakfast I took a shower and was surprised at the spacious room that was provided.  I would estimate that the shower was the same size as one you would find in most apartments which also included a small space to place your toiletry bag and clothing.  Towels, washrags and hand towels are provided as well.  The hot water was really hot (thank you!) and did not operate on a timer. Glorious!!  My trip ended in my roomette jotting down my thoughts and enjoying the remaining hours of this little romance.

Today I am glad that I had the opportunity to expand my horizons.  No matter where I am or how I found my there, I took a moment to reach outside of my comfort zone even in the smallest way.

Give your day a new door to walk through and be open to the little things.