Some August field notes and pictures.

It has been nearly a month on vacation. Slowing down, unwinding, dialing down the demands does not happen quickly, in fact it takes longer than I would like. I also do not think it possible for everything to be silenced. Life continues whether I am on holidays or not. Which is okay, because I am not trying to escape, just taking breaks where I can get them.

The hammocks at Camp Hart

Listening to the wind, the lapping of water, the chirping of birds and the buzzing of crickets all remind me of the largeness of this land and how small I really am.

Lake Huron

I like going to the movies on a rainy day.

Practicing presence is important. For the first two weeks I would begin to feel anxious, unconscious of what was causing it. I quickly realized my nervousness was connected to the time of day, usually right before a drop-in was set to begin. I repeatedly had the opportunity to pray for The Dale, let it go, and settle into being present to the moment.

We got to enjoy substantial visits with two families we first became connected to when our daughters began Kindergarten together. I love that our friendship has spanned thirteen years (so far).

The moon and Jupiter

Sleeping in and napping are two skills I am honing.

Campfires make me happy. So do sun kissed cheeks, sitting and reading on a dock, and hearing Cate laugh as we listen to The Vinyl Cafe.

Camping at The Pinery

Having friends that look after you (by drawing a bath, feeding you, watching funny television together, sharing a campsite, touring you around their new neighbourhood, sharing their cottage) and your family (by dropping off meals on your doorstep, inviting us over, chatting in the street) are very special. Knowing the impact this has makes me want to ensure more people get to experience this kind of care.

Hanging out at home with no where to go is good for the soul.

Did you know that the oldest cemetery in Canada is in Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia? I learned that, along with so many other pieces of information while Cate and I were there visiting some of the friends I mention above. My interest in history has been reignited.

On the candlelight graveyard tour in Annapolis Royal. Photo by Andrew Tolson

We ran into a community member from The Dale who just got housed this month. Seeing him excited and well made me so happy. I was reminded that celebrating how hope remains real is important.

September always feels like more of a new year to me than January. This month has helped prepare me for it. I am looking forward to being back with my teammates and the community. I am ready to jump back in.