There’s a Cricket in My Skillet, and Other Joys of Camping

No, I’m not into eating weird things. :)

 Just found the little guy when I pulled out a skillet to cook a little breakfast over the weekend. Clearly he’d taken a serious wrong turn somewhere along the way to his favorite blade of grass.

What’d I do? After a brief examination (Oh!! You’re still alive! Bet you’re hungry…) I just tossed him back outside. Pretty sure I heard a tiny thank you! as he hopped away.

And then I thought – for real – “Ha! The joys of camping, right here at home!”

Because you never know what you’ll find when you go camping. If you’re in a more remote area, say, for example, some of the more tucked-away parts of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, you might see anything from a tiny cricket to a great, grazing bear meandering through your morning.

On the other hand, if you’re in a popular – and populous — KOA full of kids, you’re more likely to have a stray bouncy ball or a friendly dog who slipped her leash wander through your site.

And it’s all good.

Because when things cross our path that are unexpected, we stop. Maybe for a second. Maybe for a moment. But we stop, pay attention, tune in. Notice. Maybe even interact with something that’s not a part of our everyday lives.

For a brief moment we forget everything else and are IN the moment. Caught by surprise. Holding our breath. Sometimes startled.

Often delighted.

In a campground, small wonders cross my path all the time. Sometimes, I find myself sitting very, very still… I watch the black butterfly with deep blue markings as she briefly lands on that bush right there, right by the log I’m sitting on, and catch my breath at her beauty. Later, I notice stars peaking through the silhouetted tree limbs, and try to remember the last time I even noticed the night sky. In the morning, I strike up a conversation with a mom in the bathhouse who’s on a cross country trip with a car full of little ones, and wonder how she manages.

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When we stop at the unexpected and take it all in – whether it’s in a campground, or in our back yard, we breathe a little slower. Think a little deeper. Feel a little better. And our world is a tiny bit bigger than it was when we woke up.

And that, to me, is one of the joys of camping.

How about you? What makes you stop? What expands YOUR world?

Click on that tiny little icon at the top right of this post (the comment thingy!) and let me know.

Oh – and if you’d like to experience some of those joys for yourself, including the sweet peace and renewed self confidence that comes from a truly restorative weekend in the woods, check out the women’s weekend away that I'm hosting this month. Click here, come with me, and find out how you can grab a moment for your Self!


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