Happy CampersNo projects to share today… my family and I took a long weekend and went camping at one of the most beautiful campgrounds in Vermont. It boasts its own little lake and gorgeous greenery. It was so amazing to wake up to this view three mornings in a row. I think this is why I love camping so much. It make me slow down. I’m not rushing to get housework done, to get to the next appointment, to create something or run to the store to get supplies for the next project. I’m able to sit in my camping chair and tell stories around the campfire. I can go lay on the beach or near the pool. The kids and I go on nature hikes and find salamanders and slugs and grasshoppers and I see the spark in their eyes… the excitement that such little things bring to them. I especially love getting out in nature with them. Each new experience for them is embraced with open arms. I can learn something from my kids. We all can.

This weekend we went kayaking and even though we were only in the boats for about 10 minutes we had so much fun. We were on the lake and Mason was on the back of Cassidy’s kayak, and Olivia was in with me. Mason had his legs in the water and I had a bright idea – “Hey Mas, look and see if you can find any fish.” I was watching the water myself, skimming my hand along the top and then I looked up – and my son was squished onto the little back platform of the boat, his legs pulled up to his chest with a white-knuckle grip on the edges. I asked him what was wrong… and he told me he didn’t know what kind of fish were in there and didn’t want them to bite him. I had to hide a giggle and then hide my annoyance at his insistence to go back to shore. His fear to me was irrational, but in his mind he was imagining gigantic sharks and Champ, the lake monster… and the deep unknown. So we headed back to shore where Cassidy went into the water with him, about waist deep, and showed him the little fish that were swimming around them. And he was in awe. The fish swam in and around them,  but never touched them. Even though he was afraid to go back into the water, he did it. He conquered his fear and from that moment on we couldn’t get him out of the water.

My children are fearful of lots of things. The dark, high places, fast rides. But they also know true love. If they are scared, I am the first one they run to. And hand in hand we try to confront that fear. I tell them to trust me… and although they may be hesitant, they usually do. That trust is so important to me. To have someone blindly trust you is a huge responsibility. One I will never take for granted.

Lately I’ve been trying to be more introspective, to learn more about the true person I am and who I want to be. I’ve always been “smart” but I’m not an expert on anything… In high school I journaled and wrote poetry and was more in touch with my inner being. I feel the older I’ve gotten the further I’ve gotten away from that. I’m ready to start growing again, to study and to learn and to enjoy who I am and who I’ve become. I want to teach my children to continue to keep seeing things with new eyes so that the unknown is a wonder and little things can excite. I’m ready to remove the “serious” adult and try to recapture some of the joy of youth. I am, after all, only 31. We only get one life to live and I want to make sure I’m making the most of it!