Sometimes, you can do both things at the same time.
That's what's been going on these last couple of weeks.
We had a few nice days, together, at the beach.
In the 16 years since we built the house on the island, we've spent the last day of the year, and the first day of the year there.
To stand before the ocean is a contemplative thing to do on any day, but a nice thing to do in the face of a new year's beginning.
While there, I had some solitary time at the state park which is on the adjacent island.
I saw my very first eagle in the wild, as I walked a trail deep in the maritime forest, with not another soul in sight.
Naturally that was the day that I didn't take the camera.
I enjoyed the lighthouse again, from a new perspective. The last time I ventured up the stairs, I carried a baby in a back pack... a nice little 20 pound weight to add to my exercise that day.
We enjoyed the homecoming of the adult children. I so love the noise and bustle that comes with having them home. I've somehow forgotten how to quantity shop in anticipation of multiple young men in full-on snack mode.
The weather here is bitter, bitter cold. The animals, despite our best efforts, suffer for it. The humans suffer for it too.
A lot of things got accomplished over the holiday break.
A lot of things remain to accomplish while I'm on break from work.
Early tomorrow, I am off to take a class on interpretation. It's a class with a test (gulp!) at the end of it and a presentation, that if successfully passed, nets you national certification. I'll admit to being nervous.
On this small journey, I have the excellent company of a lovely young lady that I've known for a number of years. I'm looking forward to spending time with her.... she's such a delight.
It takes a lot of courage (I guess that's what it takes) for me to pack up and leave the homestead and the kid for a week. I'm a little anxious over that as well, but there comes the time when you have to trust that what you've done so far will hold them in good stead when you are not there.