Winter Bliss

I think that word, bliss, is over-used this days. I see it everywhere. In blog posts (ahem, like this one), in books, and online magazines. Bliss this... bliss that.

Let's be honest most of life isn't bliss. Or maybe that just my life.

Maybe you're all living in bliss while I'm living through the chores, routines, service, and obligations that make up my life as mother, wife, homemaker & homeschooler. Don't get me wrong, my days are filled with many moments of joy and an overall undercurrent of contentment. Is that what people mean by bliss?

I can't speak for others but bliss, as I know it, is reserved for moments of pure joy and happiness that are fleeting and don't necessarily occur everyday. (I feel a little vulnerable saying this because maybe everyone else is living in bliss-ville while I'm struggling to keep myself motivated to cook, clean, and teach the children to be kind to each other).

Late winter especially is hardly the time of year that I would describe as bliss-ful.

But I can honestly say that this past weekend in the woods was filled with more moments of happiness than I'm apt to experience on an ordinary weekend.

It was a lot of work getting there, to that cabin in the woods. Planning, packing, cooking and the late night teary discussion with Damien, you can read that whole story here.

But it was so, so worth it. To have the time and space away from ordinary life. To breathe-in the trees, the snow and woodsmoke. To feel the cold in my bones and then be hotter than the blazes by the fire. To physically push myself but then feel sweet peace and rest. The people I love all cozy together under one roof, the winter wind blowing through the tall trees outside.

A backpacking trip to a cabin in the woods. Winter bliss.

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A shift in focus »
  • nicola

    nicola on March 5, 2009, 11:26 p.m.

    i am with you on the meaning of the word bliss and that my life isn't 100% blissful (not even close), but the blissful moments, when they do occur, leave a lingering feeling of anticipation for the next blissful moment. and we are headed out to a similar (sucks to pack for) winter weekend. cheers! nicola which name?

    nicola's last blog post... whole foods


  • Kirsten

    Kirsten on March 5, 2009, 11:27 p.m.

    That sounds and looks wonderful and so cozy. And, no, I'm not in a constant state of bliss either...but that's okay, I treasure those moments when they come!

    Kirsten's last blog post... Jump!


  • Karen

    Karen on March 6, 2009, 12:56 a.m.

    I'm ready for some more of last weekend's bliss. What impressed me was how little we needed to be 'doing' to be enjoying ourselves at the cabin. I suppose that was due in part to the fact that fetching water, heating water, fetching wood, keeping the fire going, cooking, dish clean-up, trips to the outhouse, a little personal hygiene care - the essentials, per se - all took time. Honestly? I didn't miss checking my emails, doing laundry, answering the phone, skimming the internet, etc. etc. I loved how the kids entertained themselves with 'feather people' who'd escaped from down sleeping bags and offered massages and slurped tea whenever there wasn't anything else happening. Great fun.


  • Lisa

    Lisa on March 6, 2009, 7:26 p.m.

    What a wonderful post. I find encouragement a lot easier to really feel when it's prefaced by an acknowledgement of the crummy things out there. When I hear happy people say "Oh, Life is Wonderful, Always!" I wonder what planet they are from!

    Glad to know there are some other people like me out there. I also love your pictures and your blog; it's very informative. Thanks for sharing!

    Lisa's last blog post... Glumville.


  • Andie

    Andie on March 7, 2009, 5:50 a.m.

    This is one of the best posts you've ever written and so what I needed to read this evening. Madly in love with that pic of your littlest daughter in the window.


  • regina

    regina on Jan. 11, 2010, 5:27 a.m.

    I agree that Bliss is overused, but to capture little moments of extreme happiness is such a gift. I'm glad you found some winter bliss in a beautiful family hike.

    Happy winter :)


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