It’s the weekend! And happy Independence Day to those of you in the States. I expect that most of you will be partaking in some sort of festivities around the 4th of July – don’t forget to pack your sense of adventure along with your picnic!
Finally, after working hard all week, rushing here and there, it’s time to take a deep breath and switch to the slow lane. The day-to-day routine can get grey and blah, can’t it? Weekends are perfect opportunities to explore your other side. Try something new. Do something you haven’t done in a long time. Fill your eyes with new sights, or try seeing old ones a different way. There’s no telling what adventures you may have, if you let yourself have them.
- How long has it been since you climbed a tree? A year? Three? Thirty three? Don’t you miss that feeling? Do you even remember it? I do. Maybe the first branch is a challenge, then you balance and carefully step, step, lean, and hang on. Finally, there’s that perfect branching, where you’ve got a place to sit without clinging, and somewhere to rest your back, or lean an arm. The wind stirs the leaves, and the branches around you sway. Dappled sunlight warms your face. You’re safe, hidden, powerful. Put on some good climbing shoes, choose your tree wisely (I don’t want to hear reports of broken arms now, d’you hear?), and show the kids how it’s done. Escape for a bit – take a book with you, a snack, and watch the world go by.
- How long has it been since you mastered cutlery? Once upon a time wielding a fork and a spoon took far more patience and energy than was worth it. When I was a Girl Guide we did something fun at camp – random kitchen utensils got put into a big paper bag, and everyone got to choose one at the start of the meal. That’s what you had to eat with, period. Ever tried to eat peas with a pastry mixer? Why not give this a try for a laugh with your family at dinner? Apparently most North Americans aren’t proficient with chopsticks – I got a bit of surprise at work from some people when they found out that while I lack the finer points of etiquette, I can at least reliably transfer food from plate to mouth with them. So if you’re not up for cooking utensils, maybe give your hand a try at chopsticks. Try a new food, challenge yourself. Go out, or if you’re too embarrassed or the kids are too wild, do take-away.
- Go somewhere new for a picnic lunch! Around Vancouver, places to try are Buntzen Lake, Mount Seymore, Lynn Canyon (they’re having a story session for kids on Saturday, by the way). Switch it up and try a supper picnic instead. Horizon Park on Burnaby Mountain provides some breathtaking views without being too far away. Stay and enjoy the sunset!
- Port Moody celebrates Golden Spike Days every year. This year there will be music, a petting zoo, pony rides, games, and lots more. Put on your party mood and head on down. Build a boat with the kids, buy a hand made garter from can-can dancers (seriously!), join in the spike driving competitions. Not in Vancouver? That’s fine – try looking in your community newspaper, or in the ‘What’s On’ section, to see what there is. Festivals can be adventures too, if you let them.
- Okay, seriously? Here’s one not to miss. Find your inner Alice and bring her out! Trout Lake is hosting the 15th Annual Alice in Wonderland Festival. Doesn’t that sound like an adventure waiting to happen? Wait, it gets better. Yes it does! Dress up as Alice and head for English Bay. The Bathhouse is the meeting place for an attempt at a hilarious World Record Challenge, “Alices, Alices Everywhere!” You guessed it. The most Alices gathered at one place. The record attempt is Saturday, the festival is Sunday, so yes you can do both.
- Lastly, remember Car Free day? That was just the kick-off event. On Main Street this summer there will be six events as a part of “Market 1886“, based on the premise that when the city was founded (you guessed it, 1886), life was different. Not only were there no cars, but people ate local food, knew their neighbours, and knew how to have fun for free. This Sunday is the first, titled, “Homemade,” and will feature local crafters, designers, and artisans. There will be honey makers, jam and canning experts. It sounds like there will be items for sale, as well as demonstrations. Get inspired! I’d love to do some canning, or make some jam this year. It’s not the whole of Main for these smaller-scale festivities – this one is 7th Ave to Broadway, noon to five pm.
Now if that doesn’t get you started on adventures this weekend, I don’t know what will! Okay, maybe I do. Be sure to check out the Grass Stain Guru for more inspiration on Friday. What are we getting up to? Oh-ho, we do have adventures planned. We might turn up at Market 1886 if we’re back in time, but we’ll be zooming out of town on Friday afternoon. Come back and find out!
In the meantime, what are your weekend plans?