Saturday, August 6, 2016

Simple Pleasures

July snuck by with only one blog post.  It's hard to sit at a computer and put together coherent thoughts if you don't first sit down at a computer.  These are the weeks that are made for family, friends and outdoor fun. While the world around us seems to have lost it's collective mind, here at Amherst Shore, Nova Scotia the days have been filled with simple pleasures and perfect weather.  It's no wonder I haven't spent time wracking my brain to come up with a great summer blog post.  I've been busy living a great summer.

No politics please, we are busy living a great summer!
One evening, back in July, I sat on our deck waiting for TJ to drive back from the airport and thought to myself how perfect it has been to be here, away from the television filled with bad news, controversy and politics. I've always said being here is like taking a giant step back in time to a simpler life.  Spotty Internet connections and cottages without televisions allow us to disconnect and just live.  How long has it been since you just lived?  I sat on the deck waiting and made a mental list of all the simple pleasures here that help bring us all back to life!

I look over the pictures I've taken so far this summer, relatively fewer than in past years, and they are photos of people playing games, the beach, sunsets, the natural beauty that surrounds us here and the smiling people we love.
Who needs/wants to sit at the computer with this outside?
The bird feeder outside my window is full of finches and a line of hungry customers waiting their turn.  There is a little squirrel who eats his evening chestnuts on our steps every day and seems totally unafraid of humans.  The hummingbirds helicopter back and forth to the feeder on the window like giant bugs.  There is the sound of cars on the nearby road, far away enough to not ruin the peace but close enough to let us know we are not alone.  These are the sights and sounds that surround me as I make my mental list.
get in line!

snacking on chestnuts
Simple pleasures are all around us here, from hanging sheets on a clothesline to dry in the breeze to picking fresh strawberries at the U-pick up the road.  Making a least at our house, involves first going out into the garden and harvesting the lettuce, washing it, tearing it and putting it in the crisper early enough in the day to be crisp by dinner time.  I take pleasure in watching the fields along the road change colors over the summer from bright green to dark green to light yellow to deep gold by the end of the summer letting me know the days of summer are coming to a close.  There is nothing more peaceful than sitting in the sun room with the windows open and the breeze blowing through the curtains and dozing off on the sofa while reading a book.  Simple pleasures of the shore.

The things we do with other people are simpler up here.  Most days begin with exercise either on the front lawn or on the road walking, biking, boot camping (not me but I've heard it exists) or inside doing yoga.  There is no trip to the gym and no fancy equipment.  Later, we all migrate to the beach to visit, walk on the sandbars, watch the kids play, and swim (again,not me, unless you call wading up to my knees swimming).  There have been days that we all want nothing more than to stay on the beach until night because it is so pleasant and peaceful.  Dinner can wait...right!?

There is also the annual bonfire and hot dog roast when we really do get to stay on the beach until night and no one really has to worry about dinner.  This year the evening was about as perfect as they get with clear skies, sandbars out and bugs non existent...which never happens.  There is nothing better than a hot dog roasted over an open fire sprinkled with the tiniest bit of sand!  Simple pleasures!
I love it when my husband cooks dinner!
One of the nicest afternoons recently was spent on the front lawn of a cottage playing bingo and celebrating 50 years of the Koolaid Kids at Amherst Shore.  This group of kids raises money every summer for charities benefiting other kids in the area.  While the kids at the beach are on their vacation they meet every Tuesday morning and have held various fundraisers over the years like walk-a-thons, the ever profitable bottle drive at the end of the summer (because we drink a lot!), kid auctions, selling liquid refreshment during our annual games weekend, and this year the lovely bingo coffee house afternoon complete with 50 years of trivia, fresh baked treats, and a giant koolaid pitcher shaped cake to celebrate 50 years of kids helping kids.  It was simple (except for the planners I'm sure) and enjoyed by all! 

"I-21".....what you say in an American bar!  "O-67"  the koolaid kids began in 1967!
Great job Koolaid Kids!

I've swept the floor, cleaned the table and countertops, emptied the dishwasher, picked and cleaned lettuce, made lunch, cleaned out the refrigerator, planned dinner and changed into my bathing suit while I have been working on this post...all the while determined to finish.  No wonder I haven't posted anything in a month!  Enjoy living your summer life!

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