A few of my favourite things: Friends, family, mountains, dogs, hikes, playgrounds, beaches, and card games

It’s a rough time in the world. For those of us for whom this is new, this recent rough time, we also get to realize what an incredible position of privilege we occupy given that it’s only now that we’re worried. In other countries, in other places around the world people worry all the time about what their governments will do.

But privilege or not, I’m not sleeping and having to work on my breathing. Sometimes I joke and say I am holding my breath until the real grown ups wake up and fix everything. (What everything? The climate, the future of human life on the planet, nuclear war, restrictions of rights and liberties, raising tides of racism and Islamophobia. You know.) And yes, I know. There are no real grown ups in charge. That’s terrifying. Deep breaths. I’m not sure I’m joking.

We are all here on the blog struggling to maintain calm and to find things that help us move forward. Susan wrote about running away from her despair. I asked whether protest marching counts as a fitness activity. Cate wrote about 8 ways to find balance in these awful times.

I’m not normally the kind of person to make statuses with the hashtag “blessed” and the idea of a gratitude journal has sometimes rubbed me the wrong way. But maybe these days lists of things that bring us joy are sometimes needed.

This week I’m on holiday with my daughter. I’m taking a break from work and we’re visiting with a friend in Victoria. I’m making more effort than usual to make sure I get to do some of my favourite things. Here’s some things that made me smile this week and for which I’m grateful.

  1. Hiking with dogs and friends: That’s Audrey, friend and an occasional guest on the blog, her dogs (good and bad), me, and my daughter Mallory at Thetis Lake.
Image description: There are three women on beach, facing the camera, dressed for col weather hiking. One of them is holding a dog at waist height. There is a lake and trees in the background.

2.  Visiting the tops of mountains

Image description: Sam at the Mount Douglas lookout, facing camera, wearing a rain coat, with messy hair from the hike up the hill.


3. Dipping my toes in the ocean

Image description: Sam in her red raincoat enjoying a grey day at Cadbo Beach, surrounded by driftwood.

4. Playing in playgrounds

Image description: Sam sitting atop a giant red octopus in a children’s playground.

5. Playing games–cards of many different kinds, Balderdash, Scrabble!

Image description: A young woman in her twenties, with shoulder length brown hair. wearing a red shirt and black jumper smiles at the camera while playing cribbage.
Image description: A scrabble board near the end of the game. Someone (me!) played “Linchpin” over both triple words.


6. Spending time in the woods, in particular, this time, in Goldstream Park

Image description: A selfie featuring a mother being hugged from behind by her tall daughter in a leafy, mossy, green forest.
Image description: Steps up into mossy forest.

How about you? What’s making you smile and keeping you going in hard times?

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