The Sabbatical… Sort Of

I’ve been on a sabbatical of sorts—if you can call not doing something that you’re already unpaid for a sabbatical.

For a week, I am on a true mommy vacation, a hiatus from the daily grind of laundry, errands, and constant demands.

On Thursday, this was my view (following a lovely hour long hike up the hill).

Lake Agnes, Alberta

One of about 200 photos taken on the trek from Lake Louise to Lake Agnes. Notice the fleece? In August.

And the drive home did not disappoint.

Gorgeous sunset in Calgary.

Leanne was kind enough to pull over so I could capture the beauty of sky.

On Friday, Elbow Falls sang to me.

Elbow Falls in Kananaskis County, Alberta

If only I could capture how peaceful the sound of the falls was in a photo.

That’s right. It’s time to celebrate the area that calls to me every August when temperatures soar past 100 degrees.

Oh, Canada.

It is almost noon, and I am sitting on Ironic Mom’s deck, in the shade, wearing a hoodie as my laptop warms my legs.

Oh, Canada.

They are much taller in real life.

Yet watching Leanne snuggle with Thing 1 and Thing 2 (the real versions, not their blue-haired counterparts) fills me with longing.

I miss my snuggles. The cries of “MOMMY!” as I walk into a room.

The screeching… eh, not so much.

Being gone encourages my husband to find new and interesting ways to entertain two children alone.

Like going to the military museum so my children can play in an F-16 cockpit and pretend to target each other.

The kids loved the F-16.

CG learned the military museum was free… and kid friendly.

Don’t feel bad for him. He’s raking in the praise on facebook where I swiped the photos from.

My parents and grandparents have scolded me (in the nicest way) about my lack of updating this summer, as my plate piled with so many things and the words dried up.

Now, I get it.

My family has missed the joy The Tackler has when allowed to drive one of CG’s remote controlled cars (recently repaired from his childhood).

Enjoying the early morning before Texas heat kicks in.

Remote control cars and brick shots: it’s just another July day in Austin.

I haven’t updated how many bricks Lil Diva has reached (12 bricks, for those wondering).

I literally have hundreds of half-composed posts in my heads, full of stories, frustrations, hilarious conversations, melancholy, and joy.

Yet I found myself unable to write them.

Friday, I lugged my laptop outside to Leanne’s deck, enjoying the perfect air. I visited a writing site where I used to do writing prompts twice a week, but I hadn’t in months.

Suddenly, it happened.

The spark of creativity lit, gone for so long.

And I had to write.

Was it good? Eh.

Was it twisted? Oh yeah. My characters would not make good Disney movies.

But I wrote. The characters spoke. Ideas churned where previously there was only silence.

Oh, Canada. The quiet. The natural beauty. The 75 degree weather in August. The ability to sleep in as late as I want.

The place where a wonderful, supportive friend who “gets” it lives and opens up her home to me for an entire week.Lake Louise, Alberta Canada

It’s good for the soul. And writing.

Now if I could just take the mountains home with me…

* * *

What do you do to recharge?


About Kelly K @ Dances with Chaos

Kelly K has learned the five steps to surviving of motherhood: 1) Don't get mad. Grab your camera. 2) Take a photograph. 3) Blog about it. 4) Laugh. 5) Repeat. She shares these tales at Dances with Chaos in order to preserve what tiny amount of sanity remains. You can also find her on her sister blog, Writing with Chaos ( sharing memoir and engaging in her true love: fiction writing. It's cheaper than therapy.
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19 Responses to The Sabbatical… Sort Of

  1. Lori Dyan says:

    It looks like a fabulous time was had by all 🙂

  2. Annie says:

    Ah, so beautiful! That would definitely help my writing slump. Summer has been chaotic and hot.

    • Amen to that. Even with the kids in preschool more, I’ve had less time as I’ve tried to figure out the school situation for The Tackler, plus karate, house organizing…

      Is Taz starting school this year?

      • Annie says:

        Not yet. One more year of PreK. I totally know what you mean about having less time. It doesn’t seem to get easier even as they get older. I’m finding that having a high schooler, junior higher, grade schooler, and a tot is total craziness. I’m living in my van 75% of the time. The other 25% I’m scrambling to keep clothes clean and faces fed. LOL

        • The days of Mommy Taxi are starting for me too. I know they will only get worse. Oiy. I cannot image with four.

          How many years until Princess can drive? 🙂

        • Annie says:

          She can get a learner’s permit next summer. I always used to hear “Wait til they are older, it gets worse” and I never believed it, but now I know what those parents were talking about!! 🙂

  3. It looks stunningly beautiful and yes, relaxing and refreshing. As much as I love the beach and the ocean. I will always have a place in my heart for mountains!!!

    • Susi — I also love the beach and ocean. It is another place I am at peace. But somehow nothing compares to the quiet beauty of the mountains, especially when going from 100 degree weather to fleece-wearing temperatures.

      Naturally, I live by neither. Someday.

  4. Elena Aitken says:

    oh, I get it. The mountains call to me too. They are my salvation. Totally.

  5. I’ve been on a semi-sort-of sabbatical from my unpaid job lately, too.

    It is good for the soul. But bad for blogging friendships.

    I feel so behind, out of the loop, reluctant to tackle the flooded inbox I’ve left in my wake…

    But seeing your smiling face here (and Leanne’s, too) makes me feel welcome.

    Encouraged. Inspired.

    Glad you had such a wonderful break…

  6. Pingback: Finding the Missing Piece of Me and the Belated Two Year Blogoversary | Dances with Chaos

  7. So happy to hear! And so happy to see the two of you together! I’ll be in Canada on Friday! Can’t wait! I’ll keep my eyes open for inspiration at Movenpeck. 🙂

  8. Jackie says:

    I’ve been wondering where you’ve been lately…. It looks like it was a beautiful & restful trip!

  9. Pingback: 4 Updates That Prove I’m a Crazy Canadian | Leanne Shirtliffe ~ Ironic Mom

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