This. 42 of 100

It’s been bitterly cold – like boogers-freezing-in-your-nose, the-air-is-making-me-hack up-a-lung cold. Definitely too cold to take the baby outside cold. A week of that can make you feel pretty cooped up (particularly with an antsy 10-month old).

On Sunday, we were listening to the radio forecast another day of -15 degrees in Calgary when they said: “And minus 5 in Banff.’ (That celsius for all you Americanos out there – 23 fahrenheit).

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Minus 5? That’s nuthin! Dan and I looked each other with Let’s-get-the-F-out-of-here eyes. Dan got the baby ready while I threw dinner into the slow cooker and BAM. We hit the road. James slept the entire way (for all those who have not experienced excruciating carseat screams that make you feel like you are torturing your child, I’d just like you to take a moment and understand what a great gift from on high this is).

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We grabbed sandwiches and started up the Tunnel Mountain trail which brought us snow-covered trees and sweeping Banff views. Sometimes winter takes on an enchanted feeling. James got pretty cold near the top and screamed pretty much the whole way down, but we recovered with some boob time and snacks.

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Chairs just waiting for us at the top.

Then we went to the hot springs. As soon as I waded in with little J, a wonderstruck grin crossed his face. I twirled him this way and that and he burst into this deep throated laugh he’s recently developed–it’s like he’s so overjoyed that he can’t catch his breath and his face scrunches into this wider-than-the-world smile.

We ran back and forth and James giggled and giggled. It was only 15 minutes but it felt like a lifetime.

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What you can’t see here is James having a complete meltdown and me feeling like a terrible mother. It really was pretty though!

This morning, my friend sent me a Brain Pickings essay (you guys: Brain Pickings!) about the memoir When Breath Becomes Air – a neurosurgeon facing death. His message to his infant daughter:

When you come to one of the many moments in life where you must give an account of yourself, provide a ledger of what you have been, and done, and meant to the world, do not, I pray, discount that you filled a dying man’s days with a sated joy, a joy unknown to me in all my prior years, a joy that does not hunger for more and more but rests, satisfied. In this time, right now, that is an enormous thing.

Sated feels like such a quiet word for the joy he describes, but, yes. “A joy that does not hunger for more.” “An enormous thing.” 15 minutes. My whole life. Scuttling around that warm water with James’s deep throated giggles rising with the steam.

I kept thinking:

THIS. This this this this.

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