The Last Time

“Just one more Mommy! This will be the last one.”

I have lost count of how many times I’ve heard this while my children are growing up. The last swing. The last dip under the water. The last run in the snow. I have learned to wait patiently on the side, watching them enthusiastically finish their play. Often I watch with a smile on my face, but sometimes I watch with impatience – especially when the cold is nipping at my fingers, toes, and ears!

Yesterday my children and I walked through the park we used to spend plenty of time at when they were younger. They went through each part of the park: the swings, the see-saw (teeter-totter), the jungle gym, the hideout, the water park. Each spot they visited brought back to them the memories they had of the last time they had spent summer days there. I sat back and waited (as is usual for a mom ūüôā ) while they took the trip down memory lane.

I am sure that this will not be the last time we will walk through this park. But it may be the last time they wish to play there. My children are growing up and now I wait for them, not in the park, but in the stores as they look at trinkets and items of clothing.

When was the last time you sat waiting in the park?

(This post was inspired by the Five Minute Friday prompt: last)

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

View of a Lake

Last weekend we had the opportunity to spend the afternoon lakeside. I have already shared with you the pictures I took of the amazing sunset (here). What made me happy too, though, was spending time just looking at the wide expanse of water and the beautiful greenery that surrounds it.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A Lake and a Catamerang. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

The wide expanse of water soothed my soul: a soul that is daily surrounded by the man-made skyscrapers of a city.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
View  of a lake. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

There were some people on the lake enjoying its serenity and tranquillity.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A canoeist on the lake. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

We took a slow boat ride on the water and admired the shoreline and nature’s beauty.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
View seen from a boat. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

The shoreline looked rugged – especially where there were no docks signalling human habitation.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A lake shoreline. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

I enjoyed the boat ride and my afternoon at a place I found invigorating.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
Enjoying the boat ride. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

I hope that my family and I can visit this spot another day. We enjoyed our time there and created some beautiful memories.

Do you enjoy visiting a lake?

(This post was encouraged by Paula’s non-challenge: Thursday’s Special. Head on over and browse through some inspiring posts)

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

A Tropical Island Escape

The best form of escape from the day to day routine of our lives is to escape to a tropical island for a couple of weeks. I do not need the excitement of bungee jumping, or the adventures of painting the town red. What I enjoy escaping to is the beauty and calmness one can get from soaking up the atmosphere of a tropical beach.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A perfect escape to relaxation. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

Relaxing in the warm air and listening to the sound of the surf is one of my favourite ways to escape to relaxation. I close my eyes and my soul absorbs the tranquillity of nature.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A Mauritian beach. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

On our trip to Mauritius, we came across a number of beaches that tempted us to enjoy the beauty of the beach and the hypnotic sound of the waves crashing on the shore. Not all beaches were postcard perfect; but the rocky ones had a beauty all of the own.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A rocky beach in Roches Noires, Mauritius. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

The tropical beach is the perfect escape not only during the day, but also when the sun is setting. The oranges of the sunset give the sand and water a beauty you wish you could capture and hold within you for a long time.

Sunset on a Mauritian Beach. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2012
Sunset on a Mauritian Beach. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2012

Walking on the beaches at dusk certainly add another dimension to your escape from the rat race.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2012
Grand Baie, Mauritius at dusk. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2012

I enjoyed my last escape to a tropical island – and I know I will enjoy the next one.

Do you ever escape to island beaches?

(This post was inspired by the prompt Weekly Photo Challenge prompt: Escape)

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

A Rocky Bay

When visiting Mauritius, we spent a few nights in Roches Noires, on the north-east side of the island. We could not do any swimming from the beach in front of us, but the view was stunning.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
Looking out from a bay at Roches Noires. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

Looking out onto the bay, I enjoyed the view of the black rocks jutting out of the water – a far cry from the sandy beaches that are normally advertised for this island.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A rocky bay. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

Those rocks had many hidey-holes in which my children found shells and saw some wriggling sea life.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
Fishing boats. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

The fishing boats were anchored, ready for use by the early morning fishermen.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
Tethered fishing boats in Roches Noires. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

The grey clouds were reflected in the water: water which felt cold as we dipped our toes in.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A rocky beach at Roches Noires. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

Not much sand could be found on the beach in front of the bungalow we were staying in. To swim, we would have to take a quick walk to the public beach.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A view of Roches Noires. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

A little further along we found a small stretch of beach on which to sit and enjoy the view. I found the time we had there calming and rejuvenating. Another special moment in a holiday crammed with special moments.

Have you visited a rocky bay? Where was it?

(This post was inspired by Jake’s prompt: Bay. Head on over to his site to see links to more interpretations)

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

A Snow-Filled Neighbourhood

The month of February was filled with snowy days. On one of these late afternoons, I took a walk with my daughter and my camera to capture some of the sights as we walked down streets we saw every week. The snow had not yet been cleared off the roads and was instead being churned by the wheels of vehicles.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A snow-filled intersection. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

We approached an intersection we see everyday and saw it differently as it was all covered in white. The benches placed on the side of the roads for pedestrians were not in use. Instead, snow covered the seat preventing people from sitting and watching passers-by.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A snow-filled bench. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

As we walked down the side roads heading for our destination, the snow fell gently on our faces. We looked though the trees and all was covered in white with the winter branches reaching for the skies.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
Looking between the trees. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

The snow covered the¬†sidewalks¬†– in some places as high as our knees. We moved through the silent white world, laughing as we wished for wider-based shoes that would help us move¬†easily¬†through nature’s covering. “We should have snow shoes!” my daughter exclaimed. They certainly would have helped in our trek!

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
View of a snowy side street. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

I found some of the views beautiful and peaceful. Walking on this snowy day was not a chore as I breathed in the crisp, fresh air and filled my soul with the earth’s beauty.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A winter scene. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

I could not miss an opportunity to have my daughter take a picture of me on this beautiful day. The snow was still falling gently and the world had that peaceful sense of quiet which comes with it.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A portrait. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

Walking home in the evening, the light sparkled on the freshly fallen snow. It was still hazy (yes, the snow was still falling), and the scene had a beauty all of its own.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A snow-filled night scene. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

When we walked past our neighbourhood park, the playground was silent. Looking at the swings, one could almost hear the echo of the children’s¬†voices.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
Swings in the park. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

Before we left the outside behind, we looked back at the night and silently said goodbye to the falling snow.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013
A snowy night view. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

Because we knew that the next day our experience would be different when we walk the same streets.

What is your experience when you walk in your neighbourhood on a winter’s day in the late afternoon?

(This post was¬†inspired¬†by this week’s Weekly Photo Challenge prompt by WordPress.com)

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2013

Peaceful Sunset

It is not every day that I notice the setting of the sun. When the day is ending, I am filling my moments with tasks: helping my children with homework, doing household chores, following the weekly routine that never wavers from day to day. Time passes and, before I know it, night time is peering in through my windows.

When on holiday, however, you take the time to slow down and to notice the natural changes that occur everyday. You notice the twilight and, if you are inclined to, you settle down and watch the sun set in the sky. On our last holiday to Mauritius, we took the time to sit down on the beach and watch the setting sun change the colours in the sky.

Sunset on a Mauritian Beach. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2012
Sunset on a Mauritian Beach. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2012

It was a moment of peaceful tranquillity  The surroundings were quiet except for the sound of the water coming up on the beach. The salted air wrapped itself around me and I breathed in deeply. The peace buried itself into my soul and I felt myself sinking into the harmony of nature. The colours, the gentle noise of nature, the scents, all conspired to bring to me a sense of peace. It is this peace that we often crave when the busy lives we lead becomes unbearable. And it is this sense of peace that sustains me until I am able to experience another.

Where was the last place that you experienced a sense of peace?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2012

(This post was inspired by Jake and his stunning graphics. The prompt for this week’s challenge is: peaceful.)

The Wonder of Nature

Rain Forest Jungle Tree with massive exposed s...
Rain Forest Jungle Tree with massive exposed support roots near Catarata del Toro (Photo credit: mikebaird)

We break through into the quietest part of the forest. The trees whisper to one another and the blue sky is hidden by green. It feels cool, damp, refreshing in the heat of the day. I breathe in deeply. Ah, the scent of Nature fills me like no other scent that has been created by man in factories. This scent is pure; this scent cannot be captured in a small bottle to be sold over the counter. My companions, too, are quiet: taking in the beauty that surrounds us; and the magnificence of Mother Nature in all her glory.

I move off on my own, drawn to a place where I can rest my legs and sit to take in the tranquillity that is so hard to find in the city. My back against the tree, I admire the vegetation that thrives in this dense area of living organisms. I listen to the chitter of insects; the accompaniment of the wind; the whispered murmurings of my companions. I gaze in wonder at this creation that man is slowly, inch by inch, destroying with axes and fire.

I hug my experience and my wonder close to me. I do not know when next I will be able to recharge my soul and spirit with the beauty of the foliage and the quiet tranquillity of the forest.  In the meanwhile, I will inhale as much of the pure scent as I can.

Do you often experience the wonder of nature?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2012

(Join me in the Five Minute Friday Challenge hosted by¬†Lisa-Jo Baker.¬†Participants write for 5 minutes with no editing, no over thinking, and no backtracking. This week’s prompt is: Wonder)

Weekly Photo Challenge:Free Spirit

When I look at the majority of children and animals such as dogs, I see that they are free-spirited: their enjoyment of life has not yet been disciplined out of them. We were visiting the beaches on the Toronto Island and many people were out enjoying the sand, sun and water. The dog in the photo was no exception: he spent much time frolicking in the water, enjoying the refreshing coolness as well as the freedom of movement.

Frolicking dog on the beach. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2012

What does the phrase “free-spirit” make you think of?

Join us each week for the Photo Challenge posted at¬†The Daily Post at WordPress.com. This week’s prompt is: Free Spirit)