Have you ever just been somewhere, or seen something, and suddenly a sense of calmness falls over you. It’s like you’ve been holding your breath, and it’s in that moment of release that you finally find relief.
I find myself experiencing this feeling every time I see mountains. The Western United States is so extraordinary beautiful, it takes my breath away – and that’s not just because of the higher altitude up here (okay, maybe a little.) But seriously, have you ever seen the sky out here? I swear it’s bigger than the suburban sky I see back home in New York. It seems to go on forever, and on Lake Tahoe, all you can do is look out in the distance and wonder where the water finishes, the mountains start, and the sky takes over. And don’t get me started on the TREES! These bad boys are stories high, and you can make out the outline of each one, even as they prop up on the mountain tops. Every part of nature feels distinct, purposeful; as if they are here for a reason and are perfectly balanced in alignment with the earth.
But honestly, this place is gorgeous and I can’t hide the fact that I am falling in love with it.
Each day, I find myself more driven by the idea of purpose. Driven by the idea that we, as humans, should be purposeful in what we do. And I don’t mean that in the seemingly uptight way that it sounds. But I mean it in the way that we should live with intention. We should give purpose to our day in whatever way seems right to us, right now. Whether that’s heading into your office each day, or making sure you hit the gym, taking a yoga class, or simply trying something new. And being here, seeing the distinct lines and colors of the Lake and surrounding areas, feels purposeful. It feels right for me, right now.
This family vacation feels like a long time coming. The five of us haven’t really gone away as just the five of us in a long time. We’re all getting a bit older now, my brother and sister just having turned 27, and myself 23. My parents reached their double nickel birthday, and would kill me if they knew I was telling you that, but we’re all developing our own lives so to speak. So this trip, it’s a reunion of all that we were and all that we’re becoming wrapped into one. It’s beautiful in the simplest of ways and I’m treasuring this.
I have one of those close, stubborn, Italian families, that doesn’t know how to take “no” for an answer and we all seem to keep trudging forward no matter what smacks us in the face. We’re the kind of people who wake up between 5 – 6 in the morning, commute to work or to the gym, goes through our day at an office, or in a classroom, or as a member of our community, gets back home around 8:00, makes dinner as a family, goes to sleep and does it all again the next day. When I tell you I think my parents are machines, I’m not kidding. They just keep going. It’s incredible. But it’s also exhausting. And I love love love seeing them taking this time to relax. To read a book, or take a long walk, or enjoy these views as much as I am right now.
Here’s a few photos of my nutty family in a place that’s allowing us all to breathe, relax, and enjoy the next 7 days void of schedules, meetings, and 5AM wake up calls.