Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Family Vlog - We went to Banff, Canada! (Part 1)

Canada, Eloise is 10 Months, and Living a Connected Life.

I just spent the last two weeks in Canada with my sister Meredith. She and her husband David had a baby girl on March 25th so Eloise and I went to meet her and help Meredie learn to do life with a baby. It's kind of ironic I would be doing that considering just ten months ago it was Meredith by my side teaching ME how to do life with a baby, but life is funny like that and sometimes you just need a sister to remind you of the stuff you already know.

Meredith is an amazing mama. Her daughter, Loewy Elisabeth, is darling and tiny, but somehow her farts are worse than Shaun's. No exaggeration. That little honey can stink up a room. Her poo is so bad I almost gagged on one occasion, and that is saying a lot because I'm surrounded by unshowered skateboarders most days. She is breastfed too... which makes her stink all the more mysterious.

Shaun was in Panama for the first week I was in Canada. He and a team of staff from Calling All Skaters were there doing an outreach with our friend Dave Terranova. They gave Dave's skatepark a facelift and hosted a couple different skate events, investing in the young skaters & sharing the love of Christ with them.

My Dad booked a last minute trip to Canada to see us so he arrived the day before Shaun did. It was perfect. My brother-in-law was able to take a few days off work and we headed to the mountains for a weekend getaway. Banff is a glorious place. It looks like Switzerland, feels like Colorado, and sounds like Australia because almost everyone working there is from "down under."

Lake Louise might be my favorite place I've ever been. It's definitely up there. Right next to Lake Vevey in Switzerland and Manhattan Beach in LA. Manhattan Beach isn't really the same caliber of place as the others but being there does something to my heart that reminds me of heaven. It's just a good place. Lake Louise reminds me of heaven too. I kept joking about feeling high there. Really though, who needs to smoke weed when you can get Rocky Mountain High? Not me. No thanks.

I've been on a writing hiatus. Not by choice. I feel like it just happened to me. Between being a mom, making YouTube videos, serving Beauty Arise, and attempting to writing a book (errr... That process is going soooo slowly that I feel silly even including it in here...) I just haven't know when to write or even what to say. But I don't think it's good for me. So here I am. Jumping back on the blogging bandwagon.

Eloise is 10 months old now. Her hair is long and her big gummy smile finally gained two little pearly whites last week! Her first ones. She pulls up on everything and loves to eat. She also still loves to nurse. If she chose her own diet it would consist of breast milk, French fries, and lots and lots of meat. She loves meat. Chicken. Beef. Pork. She went through a refried beans phase but it was short lived because she got pretty sick one week and after that she didn't want them anymore. She has flown 22 times and been to two nations outside the U.S. In May it will be 3 because we are heading to Jamaica as a fam with our friend Carly.

Life over here has been pretty wonderful but I find that it's still so easy to get caught up in things that don't really matter. I feel distracted often. For some reason distraction is comfortable for me. Instead of engaging with the people and things that matter most I find myself passing time scrolling through my Instagram feed or plugging away at household chores that really could wait till later. Lately I've been longing for connection. Connection with God first. I don't want to talk about Him by reciting old stories & recalling things from years past. I want fresh experiences with Jesus. Fresh connection. And with Eloise. She is growing so fast I don't want to miss it. I don't want to spend my days looking forward to her next nap. I want to connect with her when she is awake. Pray for her. Play with her. And with Shaun. We are both busy people. We are "people people" so we are constantly doing things with others, and even though we are together often I still feel like it's possible for me to miss him too. Like we can be together but still be somewhere else in our heads. Thinking about work stuff or social media stuff. I want to be present with him, pursuing him and pursuing God with him.

When I make videos on YouTube I try to imagine you. The viewer. I don't want to make videos just to feel like I did something. I want to bless you. I want you to be encouraged and strengthened in your life. I want you to be entertained. So instead of pursuing success online I'm trying to pursue connection there too. I want to connect with my content and I want to connect with you through it.

Connection. That's how I'll end this post. Right now, this week, I'm pursuing connection. By disconnecting with fruitless activities and reconnecting with the meaningful. My phone is basically out of commission after 9pm. And I won't be using it in the morning until I've spent some time in the Bible. It doesn't have to be a lot of time. Just some time. I'm trying to be better about using my planner too, that way I am more organized and better at prioritizing.. On that note I am convinced I have the best planner EVER and I seriously think EVERYONE should get one. It is SO cute and encouraging and helpful. It even reminds me to drink more water. Go get one. http://corieclarkshop.com/

So that's all. A hodge podge of thoughts from my heart to yours. And now a hodge podge of photos from our trip because they are too good not to share. I'll be printing them out and adorning my house with them. Follow us on snapchat to see if I really do it. 
"The Shaun Hover Reality Show" -- Snapchat: Shaun Hover 

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