Despite the cliché post title, this week for me is seriously the calm before the storm!
Not only are we making the 15-hour drive in one day up to Spokane Washington this Friday, but I also have 80 final papers to grade to the tune of 135,000 words, over the next 10 days.
My students used to submit hard copies of their papers in which I could read while my hubby drove, but in the classes I teach these days, students submit their assignments online through the university portal. So much for multi-tasking.
Other frenetic moments looming include food shopping, packing for the road trip and waking up at 3:00 am to begin the drive. Not to mention, enjoying Thanksgiving dinner with 35 other people occupying multiple generations. And the threat of Black Friday deals, the stress of overeating, then the inevitable long drive back home.
For the Thanksgiving holidays, we are staying in a dog-friendly hotel which should help with the feeling of calm. Usually, we stay with family, but other family members beat us to the available guest rooms. Believe me, I am thankful for our large family and we have loads of fun, but daily walks and hikes (weather permitting) and some downtime are the only ways I can cope with most holiday gatherings.
Autumn is my favorite time of year and enjoying the fall leaves and colors brings me peace. Hiking in the woods with my dogs provides a calm respite from the craziness of the holidays and helps me work off that extra piece of pumpkin pie. Unlike many, when walking outdoors, I choose to unplug any tech and just listen to nature and the wind in the trees. Breathing in the cold, crisp air is also calming.
Walking along the water is another way to calm my spirit when stress is nigh. Before we traveled home from San Diego in October, we took a walk on the bayside of Pacific Beach near where my step-daughter lives.
I am blessed to live in a decent suburban neighborhood where it is safe to walk my dogs. I’m linking with Restless Jo’s Morning Walk this week and sharing why walking in nature brings me calm!
I am also linking with Dawn’s Festival of Leaves.
As I seek some calm this week, I hope you can share your version of “calm” in your creative ways through images, poetry, music, and stories.
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