We planned our little cabin getaway to Rutledge, Georgia (Hard Labor State Park) many months ago, but it couldn't have come at a better time. We left Friday not long after hearing about the horrific shootings that happened in Connecticut. We were able to read what happened, or what they knew at that time. I can admit with shame, that we were a little relieved that we wouldn't have access to TV or the internet while out there. The TV is easy to stay away from, the internet not so much, with smart phones, etc. But we mentally unplugged while we were gone. It was good for us, and relief for the soul not to be bombarded with the tragic images. I just didn't want to see the faces. I had already shed tears. I wasn't sure I was ready to fully commit to the grief.
But now we are home and I want to see all of those precious faces. I want to educate myself on ways our country can try harder to make these things not happen so easily. To make it a priority (not only with the obvious issues, but others). But I will admit that there are times I want to take Ethan's boss up on his standing offer for us to relocate to Vancouver, Canada. Just to be out of this country, at least for this reason, is a very attractive thing. But that would be irrational. Bad things can happen anywhere, but statistics show, these things obviously happen more here.
All that aside, like everyone else around the world, my heart breaks for the families that have lost these precious children and adults. I know we will never really know the full extent of their horror and loss. I hope we never have to.
It made me soak up all of the quality time I spent with my children, my family, that much more this weekend. To kiss my boys, smell their scent, thank God that they are here, and safe. As safe as we can make it for them, as parents, at least.
On a more positive note, we hiked some beautiful trails, did some geocaching, Cooper and Ethan took an archery lesson offered by the Forest Ranger of the park (how COOL would it be for a kid to tell their friends "My Dad is a Forest Ranger!") and they are officially hooked, and I made good on that promise to myself to start making dolls.
We also made s'mores with the fireplace we had inside our cabin, watched the sky for any leftover shooting meteors (we SAW some!!!) and I got to play with my new lens (I highly recommend this lens if you're looking for a wide angle. It's not TOO wide, at 30mm, but it's incredibly sharp and the background bokeh is gorgeous - see photo above. And the lens is relatively affordable if you can't swing for one of those expensive L lenses like me.)
Geocache treasures... artwork by the geocache owner below : )
Set a boy free in the woods, and they have endless entertainment using the best thing ever: STICKS!
S'more makin' in the cabin...
Here are some in-progress photos of my doll I stitched! (using this awesome pattern!) I definitely had one of those "look what I made!" moments after I finished this doll. I feel so, SO excited about all of the doll-making possiblities in the future. She only took me two nights to make and I've already cut out the pattern pieces to make another. I have plans to make at least two more of these girls, and then I'm on to make some out of this Japanese book I found. My nephew is asking his Japanese teacher to do some translating for me (haha), but there are also visual illustrations that I've been able to decipher fairly well. To say I'm excited is an understatement. I haven't felt this passionate about a craft in a very long time.
I have more photos that I'll share shortly! I'm also super excited about the possibilities of creating my own doll patterns. I have all sorts of ideas swimming around in my head - girls from the 60's wearing little mod dresses, and let's not forget the boys! I have plans to make some dolls for my boys as well. They actually love dolls and still sleep with a stuffed doll when they go to bed.
Are you deep in making handmade gifts for your loved ones? I'm thrilled to have some handmade gifts to gift to some friends and family this year. There's nothing better.