I love where I live. I really do.
I’m fortunate to live on several acres of land surrounded by natural woods. I can walk out of my door and stroll leisurely though a forest. I have a large front yard that used to be a pasture. My house is surrounded by oak and pecan trees. There are all manner of birds that visit and nest here. Often when we come home during the fall, we have several deer munching on the persimmons that fall from the trees. It can be a paradise.
But this is also where I deal with the everyday demands of life. Cooking, cleaning, mediating family squabbles or sometimes being in the middle of a squabble. Stressing over work, family, bills and the future. It can drain away the creativity.
I have been longing to get away. Last year, my family was fortunate to be able to vacation in Gatlinburg, Tennessee for a week. This year, a week vacation was not possible. An overnight trip to the beach planned for June had to be cancelled. So I was thrilled when we could combine dropping my son off for summer camp with an overnight trip to the mountains.
The drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway led up into the clouds themselves as we stopped at the highest peak along the Parkway (North Carolina).
There was interesting flora.
We went to Mt. Mitchell State Park and climbed to the observation tower. At 6684 feet above sea level, it is the highest point east of the Mississippi. However, the clouds had moved in obstructing any view.
On the way back down the Parkway, we were surprised by an amazing sight.
This was the first full rainbow I had ever seen. The colors were so bright and vibrant. It was truly a gift.
There was also a reminder of the magic of our surroundings.
We stayed in Hendersonville, NC where I found a mountain mermaid …
This special kitty has extra toes on his paws.
Our lives are full of miracles but the routine of everyday living can block our appreciation of these. We all need a chance to stop and breathe. Sometimes, we can do this at our homes. But sometimes going somewhere new is just what we need to be refreshed.