The outdoors. The woods. The lakes. A fishing pole. A trusty deer rifle. Watching your daughter catch the biggest crappie you’ve ever seen, when you didn’t even know there were any in that tiny lake. Sitting beside you’re young son as he kills a big buck, during his first buck season, as your heart pounds in ways that just about scare you. Oh man, God is good.
Life is a collection of many things. A collage of things good and bad, lovely and sad. There are no blinders big enough to block out the unhappy things, they will come and at times have your undivided attention. But there will be other times, so sweet, so beautiful, that when they come my way, I have taken to giving a nod to heaven and silently spoken the words ‘my cup overfloweth’. While it might seem cliche to talk about stopping to smell the roses, the old moral is more true than ever in these times of high blood pressure, higher stress, and enough everyday angst to keep the antacid makers living large. Maybe it’s a matter of tweaking the well-worn wording. How about, stop and smell the woods. Stop and feel the warm breeze as it comes across the lake. Maybe, stop and watch the sun set over the mountain close to your home. Even better, stop and watch the wonder of your kids the first time they learn that they can catch lightening bugs. These are the things that make life worth living. They warm your soul when the days turn dark, cold, unyielding.
I’m a big proponent of taking time to record some permanent artifacts of special moments, particularly those involving the great outdoors. Heck, there’s no better proof of that than the companion website to this blog, OldLoggingRoad.com, where you can store photos, videos, and written logs of such moments. But I’ll now say that it’s even more important to make sure that you live in the moment. Don’t miss it. Take a mental snapshot, and let it burn in. Soak up the joy of the moment. Photos are nice, but mostly what they do is serve to bring back to present thought the joy you felt in a particular place in time. If you didn’t take the time to smell those roses, you’ll have cheated yourself of much of that warm and fuzzy feeling.
These are the thoughts of a guy who’s been listening to his little girl talk about the applications she’s been filling out for scholarships and colleges. What? Where did the time go? Weren’t we just catching lightening bugs?
It seemed right for the inaugural post of this blog to wind its way through family, the outdoors, and cherishing the moments that intertwine them. If my boots could talk, they’d tell me to get outside and help my son sight in his pellet gun. They’d say go help your daughter set up her fish tank. They’d sternly warn to not miss putting the mulch down in your wife’s flower bed before the tulips come up. And I’m pretty sure they’d be making it perfectly clear that putting off till tomorrow is a fool’s errand, since we’re only given today