Saturday, 30 July 2016

It's a Go! by Susan L.

  As much as I trusted the Lord that He would make the Cape Breton bus tour happen, as much as I prayed it would be so, the temptation to check out the amount of seats sold proved too strong. Some things you just gotta know! There's only three seats left which means they've sold seven, well over their minimum requirement of four. There's a happy dance taking place in the kitchen right now!
  There was also a sale on at the local work/outdoor outfitters. I got my hikers at 60% off! Now it's simply a matter of breaking them in and being faithful to the walking. They also had seamless hiking socks that don't rub the toes. It might be worthwhile picking up a couple of pairs.
  I can't remember ever having been so excited about something. Maybe Christmas when I was little. Even the stuff that has gotten stirred up in art therapy hasn't affected me except to have me ponder the why's and how come's.
  The black box image has simmered away on the back burner for the last couple of weeks. While away camping, I left my mind open to discovering what was inside. I found a whole whack of shame as my two companions discussed dieting and losing weight. Having been so ill, the pounds have packed on since Christmas. Not that I needed more to be overweight, it sure hasn't helped.
  It's something we're bombarded with all the time, that being skinny is the only way to be socially acceptable or to be considered beautiful. TV, books, and billboards along the roadside all whisper the subtle message that unless you are tall, blond and leggy, or have tight skin with no wrinkles, feeds into low self-esteem. Or worse: into actual dislike of self.
  Let's look at this realistically. Two of the three meds I am on cause weight gain. Being over fifty causes weight gain. Genetics are part of it too. I've never been skinny. I've already mentioned being forced to be a couch potato. Sigh. There's also a huge part of me that views dieting as "why bother? You're going to be fat anyways."  Hmm, I need to investigate where that came from.
  Then there's the struggle to cook something decent for myself as opposed to munching down a couple of sandwiches. Somehow saving money seems to cut into the food budget. I wonder where that concept came from?
  Neither camping or the Nova Scotia trip would have happened unless there was the means to pay for it. Perhaps it's time to find another place for saving. That is if I want there to be future trips to lands unexplored.
 " "Am I a God near at hand," says the Lord, "And not a God afar off? Can anyone hide himself in secret places, so I shall not see him?" says the Lord, "Do I not fill heaven and earth?" says the Lord." Jer 23:23-24

Friday, 29 July 2016

Challenge by Susan L.

  One of the activities of the bus tour is a seven kilometer hike...oh, boy. I am definitely not in shape for that kind of physical activity so the task over the next month is to get walking. After doing a short three K hike up in Grundy, it took a couple of days to recover. Not a good sign even if it did involve a whole lot of climbing. Cape Breton is even more hilly.
  It has to do with my health being so poor since Christmas and spending most of the time on the couch. I am finally much better but find myself fatigued rather easily. Perhaps it's safe to say it takes time to recover from infection after infection.
  And I smile as yet another ghoul finds its way into my life.
  So. How do I make this happen?
  We're supposed to wear good shoes with plenty of ankle support. Those aren't in my wardrobe except for a pair of steel toed work boots that weigh a ton. Something lighter would probably be better. Breaking in a new pair of hiking boots would be a good plan. The last thing that's needed is blisters. (Note to self, pack a small first aid kit.)
  I was thinking, too, about taking some sort of walking stick. They cut the fatigue level in half when hiking by simply assisting balance or offering support when climbing. I wonder if there's a collapsible stick out there that would fit in a suitcase.
  I'll check out both these things after work today. The sooner I get walking, the better and if I walk every day, rain or shine, there should be a huge improvement by the end of August.
  "I foresaw the Lord always before my face, for He is at my right hand, that I may not be shaken. Therefore my heart rejoiced, and my tongue was glad; moreover my flesh also will rest in hope." Acts 2:25-26

Thursday, 28 July 2016

Finishing Touches by Susan L.

  Everything is booked for the Nova Scotia trip. I found a couple of inexpensive motels to rest my head at. They're central to some wonderful places to visit such as Lunenburg, the home of the Bluenose II and the site of one of the oldest forts in Canada. It hadn't been on my original list of places to see but because of the amount of time I have and the fact everything is so small, it fits in nicely. There are also a couple of provincial parks near both locations: ideal places to put brush to paper or to exercise my photography skills. (Must refill my watercolour kit.)
  It also gives me an opportunity to putter along the coast road, stopping often to enjoy the scenery or maybe walk some off-the-beaten-track beach.
  I received a response email to all the questions I had for the tour company. They need a minimum of four people to run. So far there's only two signed up. Please pray that they get the needed numbers!
  When I signed up, there were nine spots to fill. I figured a bus load of at least thirty was taking part but it appears the bus is smaller if only ten go at a time. That's much nicer anyways. There wouldn't be as much noise or kafuffle each time we stop. I now understand their ability to organize cooking groups who can dine together and save some money. Hmmm, maybe they know where to get a fresh lobster...
  It's amazing how quickly this trip has come together seeing as it was only on Sunday when I found out plans had to be changed. I am happy that it's worked out all the same and full of gratitude that the Lord led me to the right places.
  All that's left is arranging airport transportation but there's still plenty of time for that.
  "Blessed is the man whose strength is in You, whose heart is set on pilgrimage." Ps 84:5