Planning for summer adventures.

In case you haven’t heard, it’s been a long winter here in Canada. Last weekend we hung out in Banff with very good old friends of ours: Dana and Nate and their adorable little one, Finn. Here’s Dana super excited that it’s snowing in May! Hooray! (Maybe it’s the cowboy she’s excited about…hard to tell.)

DSCF1091

Even in these blustery conditions, there are adventures to be had: we hiked the shores of Lake Minnewanka. Dana and Finn tackled Sulpher Mountain. Oh the company of old friends! Is there anything better? It was so sad to see them go.

DSCF1103

I have spent the week madly planning our summer. This is my well worn and loved copy of Don’t Waste Your Time in the Canadian Rockies.

IMG_0638

This book has been my bible–as it has for many others. For anyone new to the Canadian Rockies, it is essential. I have pored over the backpacking trips a thousand times, and yet I still read them over and over again. With so few summer weekends, you want to strike gold with every outing. So far I’ve booked the Skyline Trail and Baker Lake in the Skoki area.

Here’s the other book I’m in a serious relationship with right now:

DSCF1106

We are going in September. Iceland has been our dream trip for years now. Our finances have kept us on the homeland for the first four years of our marriage. Paying off all our debt of course prompted me to book the trip we’ve always wanted to take. But it’s other things too…

Starting a family has not been as smooth as we imagined.  It has been a lesson in patience and hope. Of accepting what we cannot control–and recognizing what we can. We can buy tickets to Iceland. We can take this trip we have always talked and dreamed about.

We spent all weekend with our noses in guidebooks, researching rental cars, trying to pronounce works like Seyðisfjörður and conjure up the images and sounds and smells of this mysterious island near the arctic circle. There’s so much we want to do… we have two weeks. Two weeks.

DSCF1108

Saturday we head to Florida–for my sister’s wedding. So even as I dream about volcanoes, fjords, thermal rivers and all the other things in Iceland I have never seen before, I have visions of familiar palm trees, salty sea air, bougainvillea and bright red and yellow hibiscus, sand between toes…and my family.

I like to think about all the places in this world sometimes–the familiar and the unfamiliar. The feeling that both of those bring–comfort…or intrigue…or excitement. Even fear. Place is such a part of life.

DSCF1110

It’s a wondrous world isn’t it friends?DSCF1097

P.S. I made a pact with my friend Laura Lee that we’d each post on our blog once a week. Here goes.