It’s not all sunshine and myrtle beach

“And I think that’s what our world is desperately in need of — lovers, people who are building deep, genuine relationships with fellow strugglers along the way, and who actually know the faces of the people the issues they are concerned about.”

– Shane Claiborne –

Gooood morning! Hello from the palmetto state, South Carolina. It is a beautiful sunshiny Sunday here in Florence, and I just needed to sit down and write a chatty little bit about my past two months.

October 1st marks the official halfway mark for me. I’ve been in Florence, South Carolina for two full months now. Myrtle Beach, Greenville, Charleston, Ashville and Hendersonville (NC), multiple airports and many other adventures have taken place and I am so blessed to be able to experience American culture, alongside many other diverse cultures and being apart of exploring God’s beautiful creation. I think one of the most significant things i’ve learned whilst being away from home and being here is humbling myself so that I can learn and grow. Always, everyday, all the time. Not always having to say something, listening with an open mind and heart and being patient with each other and our many cultural differences. I finished high school this past June, but you never are done learning, are you. I think being the youngest here is so good, I love being able to hear from those older than me, even if its only three or four years older. They’ve experienced life and walked in this life and this world longer than me and I love hearing about their story and their thoughts about/on … everything! Especially the personal, individual, unique story God gave that person as a testimony to His greatness and grace.

I’ve learned that giving grace is not always easy, but is always so sweet because receiving grace is so undeserving, and yet … I’m given it daily. I’ve chosen joy to be my anthem and Jesus my compass because this world is dark and unfulfilling and choosing joy changes everything.  Walking ( or if you know me —  bouncing and running) in light and hope offers a freedom that doesn’t compare to anything of this world. It is so freeing to be apart of a community that knows how to do love and do life with people who are just as human as you are. In a state of brokenness and imperfection, learning and growing alongside fellow strugglers who want more from this life. Striving to become more like Jesus’ character and love with an action love.

I’ve learned that people are vital. Not just their existence, or ability to reproduce, I mean, people are vital for staying sane. For your heart and soul. In order to learn and grow. To be able to share and invest into another life other than just your own. When the tough times roll in, or when the sunshine filters down — community with people, whether chatty or in silence — community is how we connect and learn both independence and interdependence. No matter how introverted, shy, quiet you may be —  we all need at least one person that we can turn too.

I find it really interesting how we all learn lessons at different times. I mean in the sense that, we learn/experience sometimes the most obvious “thing” that’s obvious to someone else at the right time for us. Did that make any sense? I love how once something clicks … once you finally understand it for yourself, that lightbulb moment … it’s mind-blowing. I think so at least. It all starts to make sense. I find myself having more and more lightbulb moments which I used to be ashamed of because shouldn’t I already know? Shouldn’t it be obvious, — but noooo! It’s so exciting when God reveals something to you and you can apply it or realize ‘that’ is what it means. yeah?

All of this to say (and I have much more to say) — God is good. In Nova Scotia, in South Carolina, wherever you may be. Through it all and in my moments of obscurity and doubt, God is still good and has a plan for it all. It’s not a matter of trying to understand or be in control but surrendering your control to Him and allowing Him to show you how perfect His plan for your life is, His way. Flourishing against the odds and among those who want to see you fall — living life so bravely that people see an ordinary human, being led by an extraordinary joy — and want to know why. how.

cheers to the weekend and the coming week ahead! xo – sk

 

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Cringe – anyone else despise that word?

ello’ – me again! I thought I’d rant about the the top five things that really make me {cringe}. Can you relate to any of these?

  1. The words {Cringe + Trigger} — anyone? anyone else feel like 2017 has butchered and overused these words? Now, guilty and hypocritical, I do use the word cringe — but I feel it’s a reflex to use that piece of vocab. to describe anything nasty!  >>> Do you feel triggered? <<< right now I do! … no. haha, but seriously, I can’t stand when someone does something, or something happens and it may be a little bit uncomfortable for some reason and then someone says: Triggered? Are you triggered?. Pls, I hope it dies with the new year.
  2. Feet — they’re just all around not cute. I mean, I like painting my toe nails as much as the next girl, and struttin’ down the streets in my new kicks, but feet. Bare feet. There’s a total difference between the feeling of being barefoot and bare feet themselves. Just the physical appearance of barefeet are awful. I personally think they’re so nasty! (which is funny bc going barefoot is such a satisfying feeling for me.)
  3. Pessimism – ugh! Don’t you just find a negative space, person, comment so draining! It totally takes a toll on your overall mood. At least for me it does.
  4. Wet Socks – that warm, moist, wet spot on your sock is the worst feeling evvver! I can not stand the feeling of wet socks. Especially if it’s only a spot or part of the sock. Worst. Feeling. Ever!
  5. Why so serious? – This isn’t something that necessarily makes me cringe, but it’s definitely something that makes me uncomfortable. I am a fairly extroverted person, so when someone is dead serious, or just monotone, I find it incredibly difficult to relate to them. To make conversation takes everything I have! Nothing against them, I need my serious moments too — I just can’t stand it all the time. Personal quirk.

SO now you know the things that make me cringe! What are some of yours?

Til’ next time – sk

Land of Living Skies

Winnipeg, Manitoba – Indian Head, Saskatchewan

Day 7 (end of wk one): 5 hours (took us 6.5hrs) – 504 kilometres – $30

G’mornin’! So before we left Manitoba, we went to Fort Whyte Alive. Which is an incredible family friendly, perfect all year round place to experience and explore! Bison, Prairie dogs, trails, and so much more including day camps for kids and activities in the winter! fullsizeoutput_f11

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After a beautiful morning walking around and seeing what there was to see we headed west on the number one. We pulled off to a sweet little town called Austin. It was primitive, clean and quite ghost town like. This was one of the most delightful buildings there!

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We continued on until we reached Indian Head, Saskatchewan which was LONGG. V. Long. Extremely dull, it’s beautiful landscapes but the drive became quite monotonous compared to the treelined, hilly landscapes of the east. We reached Indian Head and stayed with the most beautiful people! The conversation was fruitful and their hospitality was ever so kind. They were long time friends of my mom’s and the most interesting and joyous couple I’ve met. So thank you Sandra and Bill for your love and insightful knowledge.

Off We Go: Cochrane, Alberta

Gateway to the West

English River Ontario – Winnipeg, Manitoba

Day 6: 515 kilometres – 5 hours 35 minutes – Fuel: $38 + $14

Here we are! We’ve driven about 40 H and have covered about 3 360 kilometres so far. 3 more provinces to go and we will have driven coast to coast!

Northern Ontario is v. beautiful. Lake Superior is absolutely lovely! It’s sparkling waters and abstract tree lines are incredible. The gas price however, is not something to rave about. From Sault-Ste. Marie until Manitoba, the price of gas is pretty pricey. It was 120.8 at one place, and 86.5 once we reached Manitoba. You may make fun of our Prius, but it is exciting at the gas station!

There are many, MANY picnic stops off of the highway, the trick is finding the right one! Most of them are right off the highway and not sheltered and not exactly picturesque. But there are the few gems that leave you breathless and wishing you could stay forever!

We stopped at the sweetest shop and farm on the way called Egli’s Sheep Farm. You must stop by if you’re in the area! Handmade and locally crafted, the products inside are beautiful and practical and worth every penny!

Once we arrived to our friends house, we hauled hundreds of fresh picked strawberries and afterwards we had a good conversation with new friends over a nice hot meal!

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Next stop: Indian Head, Saskatchewan

Northern Ontario – Part One

Ottawa, Ontario – Goulais River, Ontario

Day 4:  816 kilometres – 9 hours – Fuel: $33

We left our sunny capital today and headed west once again on the trans-canada.  We drove until we came to Mettawa and stopped at Timmies (the real MVP on this trip.) and continued on until Sudbury. Oh Sudbury, home to the giant nickel! A very interesting stop. You pay six dollars to get up close to it, but if you’re out in forty-five minutes you get a full refund! So, we got the photo, made a bathroom stop and continued on our way. You could also go down into the nickel mine if you wanted to!

Somewhere between Sudbury and Sault-Ste. Marie we stopped at a picnic spot on the side of the road! It was a bit buggy, but not too bad as there was a lovely river flowing behind us. The canola fields are a beautiful golden yellow, brightening the landscape up. Fields of Gold by Sting got stuck in my head for way too long.

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We also stopped at an Amish farm along the way and bought the most delicious oatmeal cookies. I can’t even describe how amazing they were! We also bought a pint of strawberries – fresh, local strawberries! Ontario’s growing season is much farther ahead then in Cape Breton.

About 9 hours later we reached our Airbnb in Goulais River, Ontario. It is v. Secluded and extremely buggy, but also incredibly beautiful and peaceful! If you’re driving across Canada, it’s one of those places where you can’t avoid it. Literally. You have to pass through it unless you’re driving through the states. It’s a perfect place to break up the drive. I also highly recommend Airbnb! Generally speaking, all of the hosts are very welcoming and accommodating.  You just have to do your research! We were welcomed with open arms and a warm smile!

We settled in and then drove up the road to hike to a falls.  It was an easy-moderate hike. The sign says 2-3 hours, but we went left and took a 20 minutes hike. The black flies, deer flies and mosquitoes were incredible. They were so bad! Definitely reccomend this hike for the morning, or else be prepared! Hoods, jeans, mosquito nets, and bug spray (a lot of it!) The falls were beautiful though.

We drove back to our Airbnb  — I firmly have decided that I enjoy nature, to an extent, maybe even from afar and man made nature takes on an all new meaning. Jokes, but seriously, be prepared for little monsters (bugs) if/when hiking in N. Ontario!

Tomorrow’s destination: Somewhere even more north, Ontario. (We haven’t decided where we’ll stop yet.)

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La Belle Province

“Plus tard ce sera trop tard. Notre vie c’est maintenant.” – Jacques Prévert

Rivière-du-Loup, Québec

Day One: 10 hours – 987 kilometres – Fuel: Full tank + $36 – NS/NB/QB

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Packed and ready to start our adventure westward

We left our little Atlantic island around 12 O’Clock. There was quite a lot of construction on the highway (St. Peter’s route) which made it difficult to keep good time, but overall, it was good driving. Nova Scotia was a tad rainy and a bit dreary but we drove into beautiful skies once we reached New Brunswick.

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We are staying in a quaint cabin on the river in Rivière-du-Loup. It’s nothing extravagant, but exactly what one needs. Two double beds, a kitchenette, dining table and bathroom. What more does one need? It has lovely grounds and a gorgeous view overlooking the river.  It was too dark to take any photos though :/ It’s affordable and just the perfect place for the night.

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Ontario we’re coming for you! x – sk

 

 

 

It’s A Local Thing

Hello again! I thought I’d give you all a small little update on what I’ve been {obsessed} with recently. In particular these two goodies I purchased just the other day! Have you ever been to Cape Breton Island? The charming little island in Nova Scotia? Well, if you haven’t you should definitely add it to your bucket list! And if you live here – helloo – fellow caper!

I would like to start of by saying that La Quaintrelle Boutique in North Sydney, Cape Breton is absolutely enchanting. If you enjoy vintage inspired, chic, classy homeware, jewelry and attire – this is the shop for you! Overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, this is the most dreamy, of dreamy boutiques around.

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I easily could have bought everything in that store — but as it was, I found two items that shall suit me just fine! A perfume oil hand crafted in a sweet lil’ town – Truro, Nova Scotia and these whimsical studs that have me drooling!

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The Foxhound Collection is a beautiful line of hand-blended fragrances where nostalgia plays a key role in creating these delicate scents.  I have yet to wear the collection, but this particular fragrance is light and airy. Lavender + Linen. It’s the perfect all year scent — I luvvv the fresh, timeless, yet modern aroma it carries. It’s noticeable but not overpowering. The wear on it is superbbb! Trust me! You may have to reapply depending on what you’re doing, but let me tell you! From eight in the morning, through three long rehearsals, till the evening – this baby killed it! It wore so well! Definitely my new go to fragrance!

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Um. Sorry, but can we just give these darlings a moment of silence? IN LOVE. They are classy, and chic and all around sensational. They aren’t anything crazy, but girl. These studs are striking. From casual to formal – they will complete your outfit. These are with out a doubt a 10/10 for me.