A year ago, heck, even a couple weeks ago, if I had gone on this trip, right now I would so wound up and stressed out that I would be counting the mintues 'till we could return home, wanting nothing more than to get back to my regular routines of work, home, sleep, and of course, running, recipes, and reading.
But as you all know, in the past couple months, I really have been doing my best to de-stressify and become an active, positive presence in my own life. And as you also may know, I have also become a lot more in tune to recognizing the clues the universe sends us to make that kind of life possible. My latest clue came in the most unlikely place: in between the toes of my niece, Hope. You may remember me talking about Hope in a much earlier post, from when I was training for the NYC marathon. If you re-read this post, you too will understand that Hope was a really special baby who has grown up into the most hilarious, special kid.
Last week Hope slept over. I started noticing that every once in a while, she would take off her socks and check in between her toes. I asked why, and she replied, "Just in case there's something there." And then she went happily back to digging between her toes.
This was a lightbulb moment. We spend so much time just worrying about our toes that we don't stop to think that the stuff in between, the toe jam treasures.
The past 48 hours have been filled with such treasures.
We planned this ski trip ultra-last minute and the only hotel room we could find was at a resort in the Finger Lakes near a ski hill that before last Wednesday, I didn't even know existed. That alone would be reason enough to freak me out. What if the hotel stinks (figuratively and literally)? What if the ski hill is barely a ski hill? What if everyone has a terrible time and blames me for it? What if about a million other things?
Luckily, the hotel is great, the skiing even better, the kids are getting along better than they have in years and have become phenomenal skiiers, and we are having the best time ever. This, despite the fact that the driving conditions and roads are terrible (two night in a row we have had the most harrowing driving experiences of my lifetime...by far), Billy's ski boots broke, I lost a pole, we have yet to have a healthy meal, and because of a poor packing job, I am going to have to wear the same long underwear 3 days in a row. Nice.
So why so happy? Because I just keep finding all these little toe jam treasures, such as embracing the opportunity to partake in one of life's greatest gifts, The Denny's Grand Slam breakfast.
|The before shot:|
My personalized Denny's Grand Slam: Eggs over easy, hash browns, bacon, sausage, and a bottomless cup o joe
|The after shot: In the Denny's battle of Man vs. Food, Food won. But I gave it a good shot.|
|Skiing under a full moon on powder-fresh snow. Life doesn't get much better.|
A typical day of skiing would've been great, but this day was beyond great.
And no, the day was not without its stresses (see above mention of broken boots & lost poles), but instead of freaking out about everything, I have been just "letting it go." Again, advice from Billy.
So now here we are, lying in bed, watching Titanic and eating sour cream & onion chips, our biggest problems right now being who is going to sleep with who and who ate the last bag of beef jerky.
And despite what I may be implying, I have, in fact partaken in my 3 R's this weekend. It is just that I have chosen not to talk about it. Because they are not what will make this weekend so memorable. This weekend, it was all about the toe jam. Thanks, Hope.