I hear them each morning and it makes me a little sad. That sound signals the last call of summer for me. I had a wonderful break in Nova Scotia and my hope is that I hold my vacation close as our calendar flips to September. I’m savouring the time I spent reading in a hammock. I don’t give myself permission to do that at home.

I took a few videos of the ocean that I’m watching when I want to remember the natural wonders I enjoyed. I was living near a working lighthouse and the foghorn sounded much of the time. It was charming when the wind was blowing the right way.

I’m also treasuring the last lovely visit I had with a favorite cousin who was moved to palliative care a week later and recently died. I have always felt close to her and losing her to cancer hurts my heart. She was a wonderful person who always had time for lobster and meaningful conversations.

I hosted an open house for my other cousins to visit and as we were catching up, I suddenly realized that it may be the last visit I get with them. I’m cherishing our intimate conversations and the teasing that made us laugh out loud.

There was a woodpecker who tapped on the chimney some mornings and one day, he fell in! When I returned home after a short trip to Halifax, he was trapped in the fireplace! I closed all the interior doors and pulled the shades and opened the door to offer him freedom. It was an adventure for each of us to get him outside. I had to laugh when I woke to tapping the following morning. My cousin will screen that chimney soon.

I learned how to operate an ancient ride-on tractor and mowed one section of the sprawling lawn. That was fun for this city gal.

jumping off a train trestle

I also jumped off a train trestle that I’ve not dared to jump off before. Only men and brave boys jumped off it when I was young. A group of younger women I know do it once per summer and invited me to join them. I jumped at the chance and took the plunge!

What type of vacation do you like best? Do you prefer chilling or finding adventures? How do you hold your holidays close to you once you are back into your schedule?

On one vacation, my boyfriend mailed himself a postcard. He got it after he returned, and it captured the playful feeling that he had on holiday. He also brought sand back from another trip and kept it in his office. He ran his fingers through it when he missed the beach. It brought him back to the relaxing afternoons he had.

I hope you gave yourself the gift of some time off this summer. Even a staycation does wonders to recharge. I have an idea to share if you are ready to take a short break. For 30 years (on and off) I’ve taken a micro-vacation each month. That’s 4-24 hours by myself doing something that I enjoy. I’m going to start them up again this month and I hope you will consider doing this too. I’ll explore a new part of town – swap homes with a friend, go to an art gallery or reference library. There are many ways to enjoy a short break from our normal routines. To listen to my eight-minute recording that gives many examples of micro-vacations, click here.

Thanks for reading my lingering thoughts. I look forward to sharing more information and ideas with you in the future. Please visit my new website and passion project, Grow at Your Pace to find out about the other things that I’m creating.

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