Been there, done that?

IMG_3861Do you ever get in a rut and feel like everything you do has a "been there, done that" kind of feeling? Routine isn't a bad thing, but sometimes it's nice to mix it up a bit, yes? This can be especially true when we enter a new phase of life. For us, right now, it's called the "empty nest." When our kids were young and we were involved in just about everything a person can do, this era of life never even crossed our minds. Empty nest was a bird term. Or perhaps something our parents understood. We weren't going to get to that place...not in a million years! has a way of happening, like it or not. And time has this quality that defies science, because it has the ability to pick up speed with every passing day, month, year. Though the hands on the clock still say they are moving at the same speed, don't let them fool you. Time crawls when you are 16 going on 30. Time flies when you are 40 going on...well, you get the idea.

So...that empty nest. It's a strange nest - and apparently not just a bird term. There are no little mouths to feed. (Unless there are grandchildren, which right now there are not.) Suddenly, if you don't want to cook a can eat out! Ha! And you can go places without checking the schedules for five people. You only have to remember for two (though there is a chance if you don't write it down you might forget what's on it). You have the ability to try new things!

IMG_3862Trouble is, this is also a time when you tend to have less energy. (This is so backward. We should gain momentum as we age, like time does.) And we can also become way too comfortable with the tried and true. Been there, done that just becomes comfortable.

To which I say - p-shah! (How do you spell that?) This seems like the perfect time for a new adventure!

With that in mind, I've got a new summer goal. To try something new every week (more often if possible) and to create a bucket list for the rest of 2014 and beyond. Though we have been to many places in our local area, we've missed a lot too.

So yesterday we began with a trip to the Farmer's Market in Royal Oak, Michigan. We'd seen the signs for it, wanted to go, but just never got around to it. Time to change that thinking. And what fun! We weren't there super long, but in the course of an hour we bought plants for our garden, tasted homemade popsicles that were amazing! Bought raw honey and some great-smelling soap from local vendors. Even met a real-live shepherd, who lives north of the area and sells lamb meat and homemade lamb pasties.

One vendor gave us all kinds of flavors of popcorn to try, and others had baked goods and vintage clothes, and there was a guy playing his guitar and singing. I can't remember the last time I visited a farmer's market, (we went to one in Seattle once) but this one won't be our last.

In a few weeks, I'm hoping to make it to the IMAX theater in Dearborn to see the National Geographic special showing of Jerusalem. Friends told us it was great, and having been to the holy city in person, I am always happy to see it in pictures. Jerusalem is my favorite city on earth outside of where we live and some favorites in California.

What new adventures will you try this summer or this year? My list includes a hot air balloon ride (maybe), going to a play at a local theater, visiting the opera house, touring a local mansion, attending an art festival, and riding bikes in some local parks.

I'd love to hear your ideas. How can we make the most of the seasons, of this journey called life that God has given?