Winter Break: Gold Creek Pond, Snoqualmie, WA

Ended 2016 right with these cuties!

For no reason at all, except to connect and spend time together - we planned a Christmas break trip to Leavenworth.  After weeks of planning and connecting on ideas and concepts for a fun day east, we woke up to every road leading to our destination, blocked and no real plan B.

Instead of cancelling, instead of freaking out, we paused, connected as a group, came up with a plan and started again.

We headed out to breakfast, got on the road and drove east until we found some snow and once we got there - magic happened.

So many unexpected things happened on our leisurely road trip to the snow that we didn't plan for, but these girls taught me so much about their ability to trust a plan they aren't clued in on, how to take it in stride and to live in the moment.

That last road trip of 2016 taught me my biggest lessons of the year.

1.  Things don't always go as planned and sometimes that is the sweetest thing ever.   Unexpected changes challenge us to think differently about our circumstances and in some cases forces us to perform better than we would have if the plan had worked.

2.  The moment is all that really matters.   Although these girls were excited about our original destination, it wouldn't have mattered if we stayed in the backyard.  They just wanted to be together and be present with one another.  Sometimes pomp and circumstance isn't the point, but simply being together is the reward. 

3. Relax.  The latter part of the year, unfortunately, shingles brought me down.  It was the most painful 3 weeks I have experienced in a long time.  Had I relaxed a little more, I would have likely not experienced the pain that comes with stress -- but while relaxing to heal, the best ideas came to mind - like how to trouble shoot this trip that went south when the roads were closed.  When we are relaxed, we are clear minded and problems don't feel like the mountains that they can appear to be when we are stressed.

We froze.  Our makeup ran. We laughed.  We couldn't feel our limbs by the end of the day.  I fell down 27k times, but we had the best of times and this will be a trip that the girls, Ike and I will always remember and smile sweetly about!

Happy New Year!  May 2017 be full of redirected plans that make the best memories!

P.S.  and shout out to these cuties who will walk across their high school stages in 6 short months!  Senior year is so sweet!  What a time to be alive!