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Monday, August 13, 2018

This is THE place.

I spent the week end camping in Fundy National Park which was designated a biosphere reserve by the UNESCO in 2007. It is an amazing place. I adore it.

The first time I went there 3 years ago it was love at first sight... can you see why?

Here are a few more pictures...

Honestly,  if I could, I would live there...

It is just an hour away from my home... do I go often enough? Absolutely not... but after this week end, I promise myself I would try to go once a month until it is lost under snow... maybe not camping as the nights are getting on the cooler side and we are not well equipped for that... but for a day trip! For sure!!! I need it.

The nature is spectacular, forest, bay of Fundy with the highest tide in the world, waterfalls, enough elevation, lakes, amazing sky at night... every where you look is simply awesome!

We like to hike there. No matter how you feel, there's a hike for you... we did very simple hikes and some quite difficult... you can relax... enjoy the sound of the wind, the birds singing, the red squirrel trying to tell you something... the sound of waves or waterfalls... It is do big that you can always easily find a quiet spot and just hang out there with a book, a notebook and penciks, or your binoculars!

Remember a few posts back I mentioned feeling home pretty much anywhere quite easily? Well this place is the only place I get really upset leaving... I actually have a meltdown when I do. I do not want to be anywhere else... I want to be THERE!

So much so that my husband and I promised each other that when he joins me into retirement, in a few years, we'd spend a whole season there! I can't wait!!! In the meantime I'll try to go as often as I can...

Well this is it for today... still a little cranky of being back home... 😉

Where is your place? The one place you'd stay forever?

Chloe 💜&✌

Monday, August 6, 2018

About my age...

Very early on, we are thought not to ask an older person her age. It is impolite. Especially women.

Have you ever wonder why? Well, we worship youth in America. You have to be young. Or you don't matter. Perhaps that has something to do with it.

Do you follow that rule all the time? I don't.  I am fascinated by age.

I am 45.
I do not lie about my age.
I don't mind people asking me.
Never did.

Maybe the fact that people usually do not believe I am 45 helps. But still.

I am 45. I feel like 30. Really.

Do I like growing older? Not sure... maybe because 45 falls into an abyss.

However, I like it better than the actual only alternative: dying young.

It's just that I am in that awkward phase... an age between ages... an age where most women fight to stay young or look younger, an age where you take off 10 years of your actual age - or you seem like you gave up. An age that is not really accepted in our society - look at books, movies TV shows here in America...

But I am 45: too old to be young and to young to be old.
The invisible non-existent woman.

Why can't we introduce people by name and age? People should be as proud to give their age as they are to give their names.

I know age is just a number. But in today's life quite a meaningful one.

I guess what I am trying to say is why not try and make room for people of every age in our society?  Just let us, middle age women, live, not ashamed of our age, changing hair color,  appearing wrinkles and changing bodies... let us accept that phase as a normality, as something that is desirable and should be celebrated! Life is so much easier when you don't feel the pressure to fit into an impossible-to-fit-in mold...

I am afraid that if we don't accept ourselves at 45, there will be no more lovely old ladies eventually.  You can't go from looking 25 to 70 overnight... That doesn't make sense.

Chloe 💜&✌

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Being an introvert

I am an introvert.
I like to be alone. 
Or with a couple of people close to me.
I like to read, knit, sow, draw, paint, do crafts, walk, observe birds and clouds, do yoga and meditation... and I love clothes (not fashion but style).

I am lucky enough to be able to learn quickly and I have an excellent memory.  It has allowed me to try many things and be quite good at them... but I am not detail oriented and not a perfectionist. I was never great.

In my younger years, this was really hard for me.  We live in a society of greatness and spotlight.  I was never the first and hated the latter.  It made me feel like I was never good enough... like something was wrong with me.  And I tried... but deep down I didn't really care... but I didn't know I didn't care... and not caring made me not succeed and feel even more like I was not good enough.  I was not in the right surrounding for an introvert.  I didn't even know what an introvert was until very recently. I was labelled as shy - very shy.  And shy was wrong... I had to heal it... I had to get overt it.  It made me feel like I was not good enough like I didn't belong.  I tried different groups, tried to fit in tried to become less shy as you are suppose to be. Tried to heal.

Go big or go home they say.

I fought for a long time.
To fit it.
To belong.
To be how you are suppose to be.
To go big.

It made me scared, miserable, physically sick.
It made me doubt that I could even be someone.
It made me doubt I had a purpose.

Only to realize years later that there was nothing wrong with me.  I was simply an introvert. That was OK.

It was OK to not like big groups of people, noise or the spotlight. It was OK to not be great and to not have big goals, it was OK to not be a super achiever and detail oriented.  It was OK to not be a perfectionist. It was OK to not fit in.

It was OK to go home.

Then I allowed myself back in my bubble in my nest... where I feel good about myself and my life.  My simple life of  caring for my son and husband... my simple cooking... reading, knitting, sewing, drawing, doing yoga and meditation... my walking and stopping to look at a cloud or a bird right there... playing dress up... my being here and now... and not really caring for the rest.

I don't have big plans, big goals or a bucket list.
I no longer feel, like I should.
I do what I want when I want and how I feel it.

It doesn't mean that I have given up or there is nothing I want to try or do... it just means there is no pressure.  I will do things, try stuff, visit places when the time is right.  Not rushing things but letting them unfold.

I no longer try to fit in.
And I know I don't and never will.
That's OK too.

I am me.

Chloe 💜&✌

Thursday, July 26, 2018

What makes my world go round...

This is my way of showing gratitude....
I try to do this post once a month or so...
But I think about it regularly...

My son
My love
My adopted sister
My adopted son
The sun
The moon
A sunset
The ocean
A wave
A tree
A bird
A book
Some yarn
Paper and pens, pencils...
Fresh and local fruits and veggies 
My home
My ability to learn
Making something more beautiful...

And this is the order in which it came...
I give myself a minute to come up with that list... and it is what it is at that moment... I can't edit it... 

What makes your world go round?

Chloe 💜✌🌻

Monday, July 23, 2018

Home sweet home

I have mentioned before that in a few years, my husband and I will pack everything and move into a RV for as many years as we wish for...

Then why would I title a post "home sweet home"? It seems contradictory for someone who wishes to pick up and go, just wander from one place to another, to think home sweet home! Right?


But first, we had to define: what is home?

Some people define home as the place they grew up, others, as the place with all their family and/or belongings... where their familiar food is to be found... and I could go on and on... when we sold our house and moved into an apartment, it took me a year to feel home...I felt like I was missing out on so much -the extra space, the basement, the backyard, the pool! Then, I changed the way I was thinking and started looking at what I had gained: less cleaning and maintenance hence more time, cheaper and as a result more money to do things I loved... more time to spend with my young son... and from there I started changing the way I saw my life and started to look at my priorities differently.  It was at that time that I started my journey into yoga and minimalism.

I started to look inside of me, trying to figure out who I was, who I wanted to be. I digged deep... and when I thought I had reach the bottom I digged some more, only to realize that at 35 years old, I was nothing like I had picture myself as a grown up... I was too self-centered, way too materialist, unbelievably stressed and tired, focused on all the wrong things with a bigger then nature ego! I had became everything I despised while growing up! Everything I swear I would never be. I hated myself... therefore I could only see one option: change.  And I took it! Slowly but surely I started changing to who I was deep down, who I always wanted to be before I started listening to people telling me who I should be...

In 16 years together my husband and I have lived in 8 different places (including 6 different cities in 2 provinces). We have moved so often... every time bringing less and less stuff with us... and over time we learned to make it feel like home almost as soon as we got there...

Now, basically, I wash the floors, put my bed up, burn some insence and bring my food - then, I can call it home! Home is easily achieve for us now...

After spending a few week ends travelling in other provinces this summer, I came to realize that I don't care where I'm at during the day... as long as I have my book, I can spend the day anywhere, but preferably closer to nature then a city, as long as I have somewhere to go to at night - ideally, a place I can call home! What I miss most when travelling is my own bed, my own food and a familiar smell.

This is probably why I like camping more then a hotel...while camping, my familiar smell is definitely there as I bring my equipment, it is kind of my own bed and I can pick the food I bring with me and eat!

Can you imagine in a RV? Where basically your home is with you at all time? It would be my bed, my whole space would be infused by my insence, I would have a small fridge and stove for all my essentials, I could park it in the woods close to a lake... and perhaps, as a bonus but not essential, even have my own shower! Alleluia!!!

The purpose of this summer wandering was for my husband and I to identify what we like or not and what we want in the near future... we changed so much over the last couple of years that we had to prove to ourselves the work we had done was successful - and it is, we no longer like to do the things we used to do even on vacation!  Well the RV life from National Park to National Park is what seems to be best for us... and by realizing that we really no longer care for cities, shopping, restaurants and those tourists traps we used to love,  we have revised the cost of living in our RV and it will just be simpler and cheaper then we expected... I just can't wait!

Home sweet home! 🚙 🌳

What defines home to you? Do you really know who you are? Did you dig deep inside of you to find who you are? Are you happy with the adult you became?

Chloe 💜&✌

Monday, July 16, 2018

Not here nor there...

For a while now, I've had this itch to move... not change apartment as that no longer does the job... but move around from city to city, across Canada, America and perhaps the world...  I have have no clue why or what I am looking for... I just know that where I currently live is not it. It is good but not great and I feel like something's missing! I am happy nonetheless but I know something in my environment is not quite right!

There is no way I can be a complete wanderer right now. It'll have to wait a few years. In the mean time, my husband and I have a plan to wander every chance we get: long week end, vacations and even regular week end!

Which is what we did from Friday morning to Sunday night...

We went to Chester, Peggy's cove and Halifax. All in Nova-Scotia.

Here are a few pictures...

We had fun... we relaxed but more importantly we kind of figured out what we are looking for...

Halifax is wayyyyy to big!
Chester a close match although missing some trails in the woods....
Peggy's cove, although magical... is not a place where you can live... but definitely a place I'll go back too often! Every chance I get.

We are coming up with criteria as to what to look for and we identified what we do not want! It's a start!!!

Well, we have 2-3 more week ends coming up... and a vacation in the winter... we'll keep wandering... looking and in the mean time we are visiting amazing places and enjoying the ride... until we reach the destination! If we ever do...

But isn't life about the journey and not the destination anyway?
After all, ultimately we all have the same final destination!
What differentiate is is how we get there!

Chloe 💜&✌

Monday, July 9, 2018

Be more like a lighthouse

Lighthouse in Fredericton, NB

"Lighthouses don't go running all over an island looking for boats to save; they just stand there shining. " Annie Lamott

I came across that citation not long ago and it actually meant a lot to me.

Years aho, I got really sick and was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis  (MS).  Not a diagnostic a 30 years old is looking for... and a dark prognostic! But fast forward to now, I am doing great, perfectly healthy (and medication free for 10 years) as long as I keep my lifestyle simple, calm, as stress free as possible and that I eat extremely well...

Now, it took me years to figure out what that means... I researched extensively all the literature about MS, looked into nutrition and stress management... and it actually turned out that the solution I found worked for MS but it could also do wonders for many many other conditions! It is not simple to implement living in the world we live in but I had to make a choice... and I did! It came with positive and negative consequences and I assumed them both as the positive out weight the negative by far. But this post is not about that.

Now, being the person I am, I started sharing my discoveries as I wanted to help others... save them time and suffering! The thing is, I became really convinced that I had the solution... and still am, and I am not alone believing in it. It came from a good place... and good intentions but I was not helping myself... and I was getting annoying... I started annoying mysel!

I knew you can't save people... you can't do the work for them but somehow I didn't see that was exactly what I was doing. A butterfly needs to open his cocoon by himself or he won't survive as his wings won't be strong can give the caterpillar a place to make it's nest but that is all... But I wanted to much...

There is only so much a tiny woman can do before running on low battery all the time. So I backed off. I had to, I was making myself and my family miserable.  I went back to my source... did more work on me, at a different level.  This work allowed me to find the real me. Underneath the conditioning to alwaysbe the best... after shedding my ego... I found it...There it was: my solution!

I could not save everyone.
I could not save those who do not wanted to be save.
I was not there to save anyone.
I had acquired knowledge and was ready to share it but I could only do so with people who asked...
I was exhausting myself to do something that was never meant for me to do.
I just had to be the best version of me I could be.

Everyone will go through their own life... and struggles and their is not much I, or anyone for that matter, can do about it but listen and lead by example.

So like the lighthouse above, I now stand on my ground... shine as much as I can and trust that the right people will find me.

I have more energy, a better mood, I am more peaceful... and that is what matters more.

Do I wish that in the blink of an eye of could fix all the problems on this planet? Of course... this is in my nature... but I am more realistic now.

Chloe 💜&✌