Who would have thought I would get the opportunity to hear for myself these famous guys that make such amazing music with their fingers? Such a chance obviously doesn’t come very often, so my friends and I made an evening out of it, complete with wandering through a repurposed tobacco factory,
Just before the weather turned too cold, I was offered a free trip to the outer banks. Now, since the only correct response to such a situation would be to GO! that is just what I did.
And since the smell of salt water and the feel of warm sunshine and coconut oil on one’s skin and the delight of being away from the stress of daily life cannot be described in mere words, I’ll let the pictures do the talking.
Thank you, dear friends. Your offer was a godsend.
If you’ve never tried caramelized apples done over a fire while huddled in the depths of a furry blanket,
If you’ve never lived without a clock for a few days, and mostly without showers ;),
If you have never sat on a mossy rock and frozen your feet off in an icy mountain stream while contemplating rushing waters and life,
A stark wasteland
A parched desert
Twisted with daggers, again and again
Lifeless, dripping crimson drops
Broken, being crushed to powder
Hope turns hopeless
Life is a series of hard knocks
Each harder than the last
Love is only a means to pain
Safety comes in hardness
The heart is barred from loving
Closed, there is respite
Harsh winds howl at the door
But inside there is no one
Alone, safe at last
And this is the choice before me
To be crushed
Or to live, lifeless
The impossible choice
Made only possible by His strength
His love cascading through makes me love
Against all odds
In the face of despair
To uncurl clenched fists
To give, holding nothing back
This is life
This summer I….
Taught school in northern Mexico in a Russian Mennonite community,
Ate the best hot dogs ever,
Had crazy dress-up day with my students,
Made weird (and awesome) friends,
Saw a gorgeous waterfall, (see the tiny man at the bottom?)
Met the man of my dreams,
Went ziplining on seven separate zip lines!
Over the immense Copper Canyon,
(think HUGE!! Imagine staring into 400 meters of nothingness as you fly along at 60mph!)
Saw some Tarahumara lodgings,
Ate the best street tacos EVER!
Visited a cheese factory,
Saw gorgeous sunsets,
Had fun teaching my students English,
Saw “The Hobbit” terrain come to life,
Made more crazy friends,
Ate frozen yogurt,
Teased our “mascot” Lucas,
And laughed till I cried. (oh the things we’d do to relieve school stress)
It was such a wonderful experience; very stretching, especially since I was home schooled and had no previous classroom experience, and gobs of fun besides. Getting out of my safe little box and meeting new people and trying scary things like teaching and ziplining and public speaking was so good for me. I’d recommend it to anyone.
“Your joy is your sorrow unmasked.
And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears.
And how else can it be?
The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.
Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter’s oven?
And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with knives?
When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy.
When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.
Some of you say, “Joy is greater thar sorrow,” and others say, “Nay, sorrow is the greater.”
But I say unto you, they are inseparable.
Together they come, and when one sits, alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.
Verily you are suspended like scales between your sorrow and your joy.
Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced.
When the treasure-keeper lifts you to weigh his gold and his silver, needs must your joy or your sorrow rise or fall.”