Rain, cloud, rain, sun (!!), wind, rain…. and repeat. April is turning out to be a bit all over the place – kind of like me actually as it is a busy month. There’s been a couple time when I’ve gotten overwhelmed but I need to keep reminding myself to stop, take a breath, smile and go on… Even with all the craziness these days, I don’t want to miss out on those beautiful perfect little moments – whether it’s randomly finding the perfect card for a friend or that little ray of sunlight that came out on a grey day at just the right moment.
Over the last week, I was lucky to get out of town on not one but 2 mini trips. There’s nothing quite like getting out of the city to recharge and enjoy the summer. This was exactly what I needed!
There’s nothing more relaxing than getting out of town for a few days, turning off the phone and just taking in what the day brings you. This is exactly what Moe and I did recently when we headed out to Bowen Island for a couple nights. Tucked away in a little cabin, enjoying a nice glass of wine and some cheese, what a difference a short 20 minute ferry ride can do! A few hikes, some mid-day naps and a nice dinner on a patio, we came back to Vancouver recharged and full of smiles.
The last couple days of rain gave me a good wake up call! Don’t get me wrong I love the rain. There’s nothing better than curling up on the sofa with a good book listening to the drops tap on the windows or even going for walks with Moe cuddled up under our big umbrella. But, I also happen to love summer and all the fun things I get to do when the sun is shining – reading a book at the beach, going for long bike rides, eating ice cream (only to cool off of course!) . This is Vancouver friends and the last couple rainy days made me think, I really need to make the most of this summer because the beautiful sunshine will not last. Too many of them have passed me by before but this Summer, I’m going to enjoy the ride!
The last month of so was a bit of a downward spiral. I let one little aspect of my life completely take over. I started focusing on the negative and I just could not see the little things that made me happy anymore. I did not want to smile anymore. I did not want to blog. I did not want to bike or bake or do any of the things I loved. I just was not feeling it. I was completely drained!
I often wonder what makes people happy. I’m 100% sure it’s not money but then what is it? Success, accomplishments, experience, love, relationships, mindfulness? I actually had a good discussion about that with a friend this weekend and I’ve continued thinking about it over the last few days. I think what it comes down to for me is mindfulness and relationships. I find that when I am surrounded by the ones I love and make a mindful choice to enjoy each moment I share with them, that’s when I am the happiest.
Looking back at my smiles this week, I noticed that the little surprises are what make me smile – an unexpected invitation to dinner at a friend’s house, a peek-a-boo view of the mountains while biking. Living in the present has allowed me to be more aware of my surroundings and that means I’ve noticed more and more of those unexpected, yet completely lovely little moments. I appreciate them to their fullest and that makes me smile even brighter.
Too often, we forget that the people surrounding us are the ones who make us truly happy. We get overwhelmed with to do list forgetting to spend time with those who make us smile. With a few friends visiting this week, I decided to drop all those chores (they can wait!) and focus on those very amazing people I am lucky enough to call friends and family.
Smiling at strangers has taught me to live in the moment and appreciate the beauty that surrounds me each and everyday. Each week, I will share 5 moments that might seem small but have made me smile.