March 13, 2015

friday letters...

Dear Week Before Spring Break,
Why do you always drag?  I know the time change was not really your fault, but it sure didn't help the momentum of this week. We are tired. And last night when Laura said something about Wednesday? I al. most. croaked. Seriously. I asked is it only Wednesday?! Thankfully, she laughed and confirmed that is was, indeed, Thursday. Thank you, Lord. And now it is Friday... at last. Since it was a early release day, Cam is already home and starting off the break playing card games on the lanai with friends. Their voices sound happy... of course... since they don't have to go back to school until Tuesday the 24th. Amen.

Dear Spring Break,
We have been waiting for you, willing you to be here... and now you are. Beautiful breezes, sunshine in the sky, and no school projects looming over us. Your possibilities are endless! In less than a week some of us will be heading up to the cold temps to look at one more school...

Dear Amy,
We'll be there SOON! I can hardly believe we'll be together for your birthday! It just makes me feel giddy inside! Best friends should be together for celebrations. Thank you for having the grand idea of a college visit road trip!  I know that ever since I posted this picture... have been worried that our four hour drive to Iowa will take eight hours, but I am sure we can cut it down to seven. This has been my year of literal u-turns, which, I think are better than slamming on the breaks and making a quick turn in front of on-coming traffic! I know it is goofy, but I do love the sights along the side of the road.

Dear Camden,
We are close to having all of the information. I am hoping that once we return form Iowa, we'll have ll the paperwork we need for you to make a final college decision. We are so proud of all you have accomplished- your acceptances and scholarships are beyond our wildest imagination. I am counting my blessings that you are seeing all of your hard work pay off!

Dear Guest Book,
It took me a few weeks, but I finally sat down and turned your pages. You hold such treasure. I think we chose your format just-right... photos he'll love for years, and space for friends & family to wish him well. You know how I love the loops and swirls of penmanship! These are some of my favorites...

Dear Laura,
Thank you for the fun on the way home from work yesterday. I wish those floral arrangements really were magic! False advertising does not make me happy! But that is okay because who needs happy when you can be filled with joy and laughter over trying to get the voice command on my camera to work! None of our shots came out good, but maybe we'll try again next time- at least it was FUN!

Dear County Fair,
Thank you for having the band play at your ribbon cutting last night! It was a great opportunity for them, and for me, too. It was just fun, and I could stand close, take pictures and even record a few seconds of my favorite bass drummer. We also had a chance to have a couple of quick visits with the husbands of two dear friends who now live in heaven. Thank you, God, for caring for them and bringing joy into their lives even though their hearts have been broken. Even though we headed home before dark, you still dazzled us with your lights... I just can't not smile at the rows and rows of spinning colorful light! These few hours were just enough for this year.

I hope your weekend is fantastical!


March 12, 2015

the weekend in the woods...

A little bit of bittersweet swirled down the drain with the last of the campfire scent.
I was, at last, clean...but I loved our weekend in the woods.
: :
We arrived while the sun was still shining... and the oak draped with Spanish moss and air plants welcomed us, along with a little patch of golden light. The camp site was beautiful. The perfect place to spend a weekend with friends, just enjoying life.

Once we set up our new tent, we realized it seemed smaller in the great outdoors than when Eric popped it up in our living room. It isn't small at all, but Camden decided he would go ahead and set up his own tent alongside ours. I had never seen it assembled... and I loved watching him snap all the pieces together, knowing just what the next step would be. Before he adjusted the fly, he slid two strands of camping lights from his backpack and wound them around the tent poles.  I made him sit inside and wave to me when he was finished. I was amazed by him and a little sad that I hadn't seen it until now...

Our friends arrived after dark and we quickly helped get them moved in. Eric cooked dinner while John started the fire, and before long we were settled in to simply relax.

The laughter around the fire comes in all shapes and sizes. Nervous laughter when you hear an approaching raccoon, or the great guffaw as he races off with a whole sleeve of plastic cups. There is the out-and-out funny, the laugh-til-you-cry, and the kind that bubbles from inside out, with jokes years in the making. And always that why-does-the-smoke-keep-following-me-no-matter-where-I-sit laughter!

Saturday we set out to explore... we kayaked the river, we hiked the trails. We love visiting somewhere new because there is a fresh adventure around every turn.

My favorite part was the trees. The branches reached out and up and around the bend. Limbs were covered with Resurrection fern, brown and craggy. I wished it was green and lush, but was thankful to imagine the beauty in my mind and know that when the rains come it will be again.

We gathered again by the fire... feet up, eyes sliding closed until the laughter comes around again. As night comes, the kids huddle around the lantern and play a few games of Clue, and Eric starts the coals that will cook our dinner in deep cast iron pots. The guys walk down the path to chat with the Boy Scouts camping nearby just before dinner... and after, we play a few hands of Rummy. After round two of the campfire, we straggle into tents, tired from the good, good day.  

It is never easy to leave this place where the breathing, and the living, is easy. 


March 11, 2015

on the edge...

We camped this past weekend... and it was so nice to spend time doing nothing the some of the people I love best. As we hiked along the shoreline, Camden stopped to look out through the trees and I noticed that the toes of his boots were just beyond the drop off. He likes to reach out for the boundaries, test the edge. I feel a catch in my throat... thinking this is probably the last time we'll camp before he heads off to his next adventure.  He is poised, and ready, for flight.

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