Pure Imagination

A few weeks ago, we hiked the spectacular Crypt Lake trail. Even though we have lived part time in Waterton for the last 5 years, we had not yet done this hike. Not only is it well known as being one of the park’s more challenging hikes, but it also has some famous tricky sections such as a ladder climbing up into a natural tunnel, followed by a narrow cliff with cable attached.


I had been quite successful in talking myself out of it for quite some time.


I am afraid of bears.         It seems dangerous.         The kids might hurt themselves.

I am worried about my heart.              What if one of us fell?        The weather could turn.

Also.                   Only really good and experienced hikers do this kind of hike.


I am very good, so good,  at this kind of talk.


However, after visiting my dad, an avid outdoors-man, and talking to him about it  and watching you-tube videos of 7 year olds making the trek with solely their Barbie back-packs on, I decided it was        probably safe.


As it turned out, it was. The day we chose for our hike  was a hot mid-August Saturday that stayed hot and sunny, and there were literally boatloads of people,

which made the chance of being devoured by a bear relatively non-existent, as I am sure they were the nervous ones.

It didn’t feel particularly dangerous either. I am not generally afraid of heights and am pretty limber so the obstacles were fine as long as you didn’t look down.


Nobody fell.


And my heart kept up beautifully.   Yay, heart!


Sitting at the lake having lunch, Dan and I commented to each other about how easy it is to build things up in your head, make them so much bigger than they really are.


In Scotland this Spring, Dan had a marvelous opportunity to do something that many people dream of, but few get the chance to do. It’s his story to tell, not mine, so that’s all I am going to say about it.

Except that…..he almost didn’t do it. Because he didn’t think he was good enough or prepared enough or a bunch of other things that only he knows.

He did it, though, and had one of the most rewarding days of his life.


It seems so silly to talk ourselves out of things when we can do anything really,

the possibilities before us are as wide as the sky.


And, is everyone really more talented and capable than us –

regardless of how prepared they may look with all of their gear and confidence. Or maybe it’s just guts.


I am looking forward to courageously and joyfully moving forward this fall into new territories and adventures, even if all I have on me is my Barbie backpack because really,

as sung by one of my all-time favourites, Gene Wilder (rest in peace beautiful man) who masterfully played Willy Wonka –


Keep watch this week for an announcement regarding my Fall PeaceCard sessions. I have spent the last few months pondering what they should be all about, and I am super excited about how it’s all come together and what’s in store.

Happy Fall!















On an adventure…..

On an adventure….

My blog will be short this week.

I know lots of you are busy anyways with all the sorts of new things that September brings ~ back to school and activities, resuming routines, getting organized again.. I am actually headed off on a very big adventure next week and am quite excited about it but also a little (a lot)  overwhelmed at the moment with all that needs to get done before I leave.

So for now, I am going to attend to my to-do list and preparations, and promise you a full report in my next post which will be in 3 weeks, Friday Sept 25.

Wishing you all wonderful adventures, big or small,

as well as trust and ease as we transition into a new season and a busier time.


Another first day on another September, seven years ago.


On the Moon, the Kids’ Table, and a quietly but surely hovering September

The Moon

These past few weeks we have been blessed with many visitors; both chance encounters and planned visits with friends and family ~Long and casual visits over cups of coffee and glasses of wine, and fun communal hikes to quiet mountain lakes where our hoards of kids jump into icy waters and screech with glee.

This is the kind of fun that only summer can bring and it is so lovely.

One of my favorite moments so far, though, was an after dinner walk to watch the moon rise. On a stroll the night before, Dan and I had admired a spectacular moonrise over the mountains and so we suggested to our friends who were visiting from North Carolina that we go back to that same perfect spot to catch the magnificence again.

This is the spot.


If you are ever in Waterton Lakes National Park, do sit in these red chairs and admire a view that never ever gets old and will surely restore your faith that all is well.

We gathered in that spot, and waited.

And waited, and waited, and waited.

And waited.

We hadn’t checked the moonrise times, nor did we realize that there can be such a great variance from night to night.

But we had promised our friends that it would be a spectacular full moon and we wanted to impress (as if the moon could possibly be our show to arrange) and so we waited some more.

We visited, and the kids threw stones in the lake as kids always do, and we shivered as the mountain air grew colder, and we jumped up and down to stay warm, and we walked up and down the shore of the lake, and we laughed and teased about how long it was taking, and we told jokes, and we got impatient, and then we waited on some more.

And then finally, eventually, this happened, as it has happened since the beginning of time and will forevermore.


photo by Andrew Stillwell

And why don’t we think to look more often?

Because, oh gorgeous and radiant sun, you have everyone’s complete adoration,

including mine,

but dare I say that              You –          magical, mystical, and wondrous moon,

you are the one that actually holds my heart,

You pull at me and retrieve me, you restore me, you comfort me, you return me to me

again and again.

And so we all heartily agreed that she was more than worth the wait, and we clapped for her performance. Happily we stood there together and even sang every song we could think of that featured her, including my favourite moon song of all time.

Moon River,
Wider than a mile:
I’m crossin’ you in style
Some day.
Old dream maker,
You heart breaker,
Wherever your goin’,
I’m goin’ your way…..
Two drifters,
Off to see the world,
There’s such a lot of world
To see.
We’re after the same
Rainbow’s end
Waitin’ round the bend,
My huckleberry friend,
Moon River
and me.

And then, becoming more chilly and tired, we walked home.

Thank you, dear moon, you beautiful and enchanted thing.

Once again you have worked your magic.

the Kids’ Table

Another one of our summer delights has been the Netflix show ‘Chef’s Table’, a new series that provides an intimate look at the life and work of the world’s best chefs. This is a fascinating show that juxtaposes very different styles and personalities, but truly showcases inspired creativity and passion for food and excellence in general.

I could endlessly watch shows about food and creative pursuits of any kind, but even our kids have been quite riveted. So much so, that they felt excited about creating their own food extravaganza for their movie party last week.


Their culinary choices would not be considered healthy by anyone’s standards but their presentation certainly deserves high marks.

I highly recommend Chef’s Table.  Dan, of course, loved the Italian chef  –

‘Every time I open a cheese like this, I get emotional. In my blood, there’s balsamic vinegar. My muscles are made by Parmigiano’     Massimo Bottura,

and I was deeply heartened by the second chef, Dan Barber, who promotes farm to table eating and shows us that even though there are massive obstacles, it is entirely possible to re-think and make our relationship with food on this continent.

a quietly but surely hovering September

We all know it’s near. We can feel and sense the nearness of September and summer’s end. We are still basking in the sunshine, swimming and playing outside, going on trips, but our minds are beginning to re-organize and plan and strategize about how this fall is going to go.

It’s inevitable.

The promise that I have made to myself, though, is this…

I will deeply enjoy these days and weeks, what is left of summer,       but

I will resist stressing about the transitioning.

We will find ways to celebrate and welcome the shortening of the days, the slow but certain turning of the leaves, the preparations, the still leisurely time with family and friends.

And when I plan what this year will look like, I will pause and consider…

what fills my soul, our souls,       where does my work want to focus,     what keeps my family connected and at peace,      what needs to be let go,      what builds community,

and from these intents and understandings,  I will find our priorities and the coming structure to our days.


The first week of August hangs at the very top of summer, the top of the live-long year, like the highest seat of a Ferris wheel when it pauses in its turning. The weeks that come before are only a climb from balmy spring, and those that follow a drop to the chill of autumn, but the first week of August is motionless, and hot. It is curiously silent, too, with blank white dawns and glaring noons, and sunsets smeared with too much color.”
Natalie Babbitt, Tuck Everlasting