Countdowns & Exploration

In 18 days we’ll be married. M-A-R-R-I-E-D. Holy buckets! I’d like to tell you I’m nervous as can be, but I’m not. Honestly, I’m not. I’d like to tell you I’m getting cold feet, but nope, that’s not happening either. What I can tell you is that I’m excited, I’m ready, and I’m going to shimmy my way down the isle towards Simon in a way that will lead those in attendance to believe I’m just a little excited (and maybe a little crazy, too). I’ve already warned my mom that I may not be able to control myself and will actually be dancing (read: wiggling) down the isle so she’ll need to keep up, but I don’t think she believes me to be serious. But I am, serious. Seriously serious. There shall be dancing. Since Dad passed a bit over six years ago, it’s only natural for me to want Mom to walk (or dance) me down the isle. That having been said, I have every confidence his presence will be there with us in a bunch of little ways and who knows, maybe in some big ways, too.

Rain or shine it’s certain to be a beautiful day. Indeed.

I mentioned the whole 18 days thing, right? Whoa.

Though the days seem to be filled with something that needs doing for our wedding, there’s still time to explore, relax, and unwind. Don’t get me wrong, the stress still sneaks in and I sometimes feel like we’re not going to get everything done on time but really all the important pieces of our wedding puzzle are in place and when it comes down to it, the little stuff doesn’t matter as much. If only I could remember that crucial bit of info when my mind is busy focusing on all the little stuff.

Where was I? Oh yes, the exploring, relaxing, and unwinding bit. This last week whilst Si was at work, I traveled to Brodsworth Hall in South Yorkshire to take a wander. I arrived a little late in the day, in fact I was the last person they allowed into the house for a tour, but really it was the best thing that could have happened. There weren’t massive crowds of people, no queuing in line for the tour, no vivacious children running around screaming and disobeying their parents, no none of that. Instead it was peaceful, quiet, and lovely. Perfect. And after I took a brief tour of the home, to which I will be going back for a more thorough tour next time, I took the extra time to walk the massively beautiful, incredibly breathtaking gardens. This place had me in awe from start to finish and I’m certain that when I go back, I’ll be in awe all over again.

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A little tip: When traveling to England and visiting the stately homes and castles, I’d highly recommend visiting towards the end of the day. Not down-to-the-wire as you want to leave yourself some time to enjoy the history as well as give the hard working folks the respect of leaving their job on time, but instead arrive with a few hours of time left on the clock and you’ll find you have a bit more peace and quiet to soak in along with all of the incredible sights, sounds, and feelings you get when you walk through history so old, even your imagination will envy you.

I truly believe you need to take adventures, big and small, on a weekly basis. It doesn’t have to be to some historic or exotic country, it doesn’t even have to be in the next state or county over; you simply need to find some place new to you and go explore it. Parks, cities, historical landmarks, trails, etc. Go explore and then share it with the world. Share your photos, tell your stories, and make some beautiful memories. Life is about many things, making memories and sharing stories are among them.

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