A Gift From The Northwoods

It’s time to come home. I’m begging my husband to stay until tomorrow, the official end of our week, but he is ready to leave. He’s done with the rain. He’s done with sitting by the water surrounded by vicious mosquitoes. This is my favorite place, not necessarily his.
But for me it has been a worthy week. A forecast on my iPhone5c called for thunderstorms every single day. We’ve only had drizzle for two. And in the drizzling rain is a most peaceful feeling.
We sit on the little screen porch, with a mug of Earl Grey, and I know utter contentment. 
Or, I sit by the water’s edge and think of the gifts of the week:
Every morning I sit with my coffee and my Bible and I take time to read, to pray, to think. I almost never take time at home. My life is filled, no, I fill my life with chaos. I check my email, or I receive texts, or I’m on my iPad constantly. I don’t read a book without mentally composing a blog post. At home, my devices own me not the other way around. But here, I must walk to the North Camp Lodge for wi-fi. I must be intentional about my time for technology.
I have worn two sweatshirts, two pairs of shorts, one pair of jeans and three t-shirts the entire week. I have worn my glasses and not a stroke of lipstick. It is wonderful not thinking about how I look.

My son has gone for hours every afternoon on his canoe. He takes his Marine backpack, his paperback copy of A Game of Thrones, and a few beers; I don’t see him until dinner. But, he comes in for dinner. We laugh while we eat. His spirit is joyful, and I am learning (not a moment too soon) how to let him be a free 23 year old instead of an 8 year old who needed me.
The rainy forecast, which did not materialize; the onslaught of mosquitoes, which prevent hikes; the requirement to live in a very rustic manner can rob people of joy. Or, I can make of it what I will…finding joy even while I scratch a fresh bite on my ankle.

When I return home I want to remember the importance of simplicity. The importance of time spent intentionally. The importance of laying down expectations while accepting the joy in what is.
When I return home, I will visit you. I have not much ability for internet connection here, just a moment or two to record a few thoughts. 
Before I return to my canoe. 

31 thoughts on “A Gift From The Northwoods”

  1. Love this post! I think it is so healthy to take time for yourself and your family – away from the chaos and internet chatter. Your photos reflected such a calm and peace surrounding you all. Definitely sounds like you enjoyed your time away and have decided to bring home some of what you've learned/experience back with you – I love that!


  2. If your husband doesn't enjoy this get-away, I will go with you next time! It sounds heavenly. Or… you could join me on the Oregon coast. No mosquitoes! 😉


  3. I'm just smiling. Imagine Facebook, iGadgets, Twitter, LinkedIn, texts and postings as a flock of birds. Now, remember what Luther said. “We can't keep the birds from flying around our heads, but we can prevent them from building a nest in our hair.”

    Welcome home — although I'd be nagging to stay an extra day, too.


  4. I am headed to my up-north here in Michigan! I'm not sure where yours is, but we are expecting rain. This is our first time up since last fall and we hope there are no nasty surprises — but we will deal with them and then we will relax — After a week of wedding events and company, I am ready to pour over two or three good books, draw and paint and yes — clean the cottage! But I cannot wait!


  5. I believe we all need a little time away from everything and commune with nature, reflect, it is good for the soul aspecially in these high tech times we live in. Sounds like you enjoyed yourself 🙂


  6. Sounds wonderful, with one proviso composing blog posts whilst reading? I'm reading Ryu Mitsuse's 10 Billion days & 100 billion nights with no thought beyond the words painted on my retina. It makes a holiday in itself.


  7. I'm sure this constant onslaught of technology affects our concentration span. However, the internet is a wonderful way to connect with other bookish types! Very much enjoyed reading your holiday posts.


  8. Now if only I can keep the peace I found there at home. It's a worthy goal, anyway. I have to admit, though, I've missed seeing what you and everyone else is up to!


  9. I tried to leave responses to your comment in Wisconsin, but they wouldn't take. I wanted to say I would go with you tomOregon with or without mosquitoes! I've never been, but I know we like the same kinds of places. Plus, how wonderful it would be to talk with you face to face.


  10. Ah, what a wonderful quote to apply here. So many things to keep from nesting in our (my) hair, I'd also like to add feelings too easily hurt and unnecessary guilt to the list.

    And, we didn't stay the full last day. 😉


  11. Oh, Michigan is such a lovely state, too. I used to spend summers at Interlochen in Traverse City,mand I so loved the environment. Not just the music, of cour/e, but it always seemed about 40 degrees cooler.

    I know what it is to crave the books and the drawing, and even cleaning when it's your getaway. Have a blessed time!


  12. Time away, time to reflect, you said it perfectly, Sylvie. (By the way, my husband saw pictures of you and two lovely girls on Facebook. He remarked how lovely you look. Xo)


  13. Ally, what a sweet thing to say! You know I love the Japanese style, I love simple the best. (Put my blog back to Simple in Blogger because the other template wouldn't allow threaded comments. But even now I'm looking for a fresh template. I'm ready for a change, although I still want to be simple.)


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