Slow Moments From Life: December 2018

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Steph Castelein walking in the snow in Northern Michigan.

It keeps snowing. On and off and on again. Usually the thick, heavy stuff that sticks to everything but doesn’t last long.

Last night we sat in our cheese making class and watched as the snow fell for a solid 2 hours. When we walked outside we were the only ones downtown. We looked at each other, took off down the middle of the street, and ran, ran, ran then sliiiiiiddddd seeing who could make it the furthest. Lighting our night was the downtown decorations and giant Christmas tree placed in the middle of the road.

Harbor Springs, Michigan decorated with Christmas lights and a giant tree during the holiday season.
Downtown Harbor Springs.

There is a little trail near where we live, one that leads mysteriously into the woods. Actually, there are multiple and many we haven’t explored yet. Scott’s driving home and pulls over suddenly, “We’re walking this tomorrow. We’ll follow the river and see where it takes us.”

It took us nowhere. And everywhere. A hodge-podge trail of endless trees and greenery and vegetation. We followed the animal tracks until they were no more, wondering what was here before us and what was hiding among us. We looked around with awe as a big gust of wind came through, shifting the tops of the trees and snow suddenly fell like a light sprinkle of powdered sugar all around us. Michigan winters are pretty darn gray but getting outside wakes up the soul a bit.

We recently calculated how much time working a 9-5 job takes up over 30 years and it’s shocking. In an average 30 year span, you’ll spend 7.75 years working and 8.75 years sleeping, leaving you with 13.5 years for everything else.

It’s a funny thing working with your spouse, especially from home. We’re together every day in body but not always in mind. We’re on similar but different pages working on our own things. No matter what you do or where you work it somehow has a way of stealing your brain. Always making it seem like that deadline, that paper, that response is the single most important and pressing thing in life. How does that happen?

We’ve been taking little steps to take back control of where our minds are. That email? It can wait. Agreeing on a specific time to end the work day. Limiting phone hours. Taking little moments throughout the day for just us. Getting outside for 20 minutes.

Scott’s the best at making sure we stay on track with being connected throughout the day.

Also, Gibson. He’s great at making sure we take a second for ourselves once in a while too.

Me? I’m still working on it.

Gibson cat snuggled next to Steph Castelein while she works.

Tis the season, am I right? We have a tree up, Christmas lights on the house too! It’s a success I tell myself. Yet I’m still caught up on my lack of Christmas card making. I can’t get myself to make, print, pay, and send them out. Do you know how much they cost? Do you know what people do with them after Christmas? What’s the point I say, and yet, I feel guilty and like a failure for not doing them. Is it for them? Is it for me? I’m not sure. And still, I refuse to spend my energy thinking about it and instead promise to send letters throughout the year. It feels like a good trade, at least that’s what I’m telling myself.

Our cozy cabin looking festive with our tree decorated for Christmas.

Every weekday morning on my Instagram story, I post a quote from a quote box I received more than 3 years ago. It’s fun to see which ones impact who. My mom called and talked about one that spoke to her. A person I don’t really know messaged me and said “So true” to another. An old friend replied, “I needed this today, thank you.” And so, I continue with them, much like this blog, hoping they touch someone, somewhere, somehow.

My favorite quote was featured this week. It was a pleasant surprise for me and made me smile. It’s currently hanging on our fridge as a reminder. “Be happy for this moment. For this moment is your life.” – Omar Khayyám

Scott challenging Steph to a game of backgammon.

Recently in our home:
All things Jackrabbits sports.
Forrest Fenn’s treasure.
Gold panning.
How gray Michigan winters are.
The anticipation of ice fishing.
Slowing life down.
Exciting plans for 2019.
Just how darn special Gibson is.

Gibson cat looking out the window at the snow and cold during winter time at our cabin.


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