May is one of our busiest months. Everything seems to happen at once. I love to go birding, and here in Colorado, May is the peak of spring migration. It’s also the month when my garden wakes up. I can’t wait to get my fingers back into the soil, sowing seeds outdoors, setting out started seedlings, and pulling the weeds that have been sleeping all winter. At the same time, work continues, bills must be paid, clothes still get dirty, and we still get hungry.
With our schedules full, Pete and I had been communicating in sound bites. “Heading to the store, need anything?” “Can you stop at the bank for me?” “Don’t forget, tonight is our small group meeting.” We hadn’t had a real conversation in weeks. We really needed some quality time. Happily, we’d scheduled just that—back in January.
Ah, Christmas. We’ve looked forward to it all year. There’s a crackling fire in the fireplace while snow softly carpets the ground outside. Stockings are hung, presents are wrapped, cookies are baked. Carols play quietly in the background while the succulent turkey browns in the oven. Best of all, the family is gathered together, perhaps for the first time all year.
And everyone is staring at their smart phone.
Not quite the family moment you’d envisioned? I have the perfect solution. It costs under $20 (sometimes half that), requires no batteries, and is guaranteed to bring the family together around the table. No, It’s not the turkey. It’s a jigsaw puzzle.
Did I mention some assembly is required?
I love road trips, especially trips with no set schedule. There’s something about sitting in a car for mile after mile, watching the countryside slowly change from the ponderosas and short-grass prairies of home to Somewhere Else. I’m also a huge sucker for those brown signs erected by the Department of the Interior. Do the elk/bison/pronghorn know this is a “wildlife viewing area”? (I always turn off the road and go look, just in case.)
There’s nothing like a road trip for carving out time to connect with someone. It’s getting harder and harder to be out of touch, but in the middle of nowhere, there are no interruptions. Get far enough from civilization, and even the cell phones don’t work. This makes me very happy (unless the car breaks down, gets stuck in the mud, or runs out of gas).