The last three weeks have been full of so much… ummm… I hardly know how to describe it… BIGness. FULLness. GOODness. Happiness. Inspiration. Love. Fill-in-the-blanks-with-superlatives.

First there was ALIA, and then there was my annual (26th year!) trek to the Winnipeg Folk Festival with various members of my tribe. Both were amazing places to spend time, where I was surrounded with beautiful words, passionate people, shake-the-world ideas, take-my-breath-away moments of wonder, and so much inspiration I’ll still be writing about it for weeks to come.

I wish you all could have been there.

I feel so very, very blessed to have experienced so much goodness.

These are just a few of the random things that brought me joy in the last few weeks:

1. Sitting alone at the Little Stage on the Prairie, listening to Ray Wylie Hubbard lead the audience in a “Snake Farm” sing-along, while cotton ball clouds drifted by overhead.

2. Late night talks with Ann Badillo and Kathy Jourdain, two ALIA soul-sisters.

3. “Nothing to do but hang out and listen to good music” moments with my family at the Folk Festival.

4. Standing on the roof of a beautiful victorian home with interesting new friends, watching fireworks on Canada Day (even though I was in the U.S, and they called it the Red, White, and Boom festival).

5. Eating a spinach, goat cheese, and balsamic vinegar crepe in the North Market in Columbus.

6. Wandering off the beaten track along the river (in Columbus) and discovering the most amazing skatepark someone had made by hand out of packed mud in the middle of the woods.

7. A brief but inspirational after-dinner conversation with Darcy Winslow that reminded both of us of the importance of personal stories, especially for women in leadership.

8. Seeing Shane Koyczan and the Short Story Long perform This is My Voice.

9. Maddy’s tattoo and her dad’s sense of humour. 

10. Being hugged by my family in the middle of the night in the airport and knowing I am deeply loved.

11. Delicious food and good company at Alana’s in Columbus.

12. Many, many moments of light (both kinds).

13. Throwing various things in the air (hats, balls, glowsticks) with my exuberant nephew Jack. And sharing a popsicle & sucker with him.

14. Doodling on my arm and leg. And not worrying about whether I looked foolish doing it.

15. Dancing with my daughters, niece, nephew, and sister.

16. Being witness to love and the circle of life as I watched my oldest daughter carry my nephew back to the car after a long day.

17. Sitting with several people at different moments and offering them safe space and a listening ear for their stories.

18. Fireflies. Thousands of them sparkling along the river pathway.

19. Fearing & White. One of my favourite Folk Fest moments, and the cd I took home at the end of the weekend.

20. Being fully present in this wild and precious life.

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