Pausing to Look for Lovely
Somewhere between Winter Park, Colorado and Denver, there sits a golden-yellow one-room school house. The building itself looks like something from an episode of “Little House on the Prairie”, with a tiny bell over it and a road running alongside. It’s a little slice of a time gone past.
There’s a stillness to the area in which it sits, and you wouldn’t see the school house unless you were riding on the train in these parts of the mountains. The school house is a distance from busy roads, and you have to look for it on the train before trees obscure your vision.
Having ridden the Ski Train as a child, the little yellow school house was something I looked forward to seeing each time we would ride the train. I’d stare outside at the valley until the building popped up before we entered the tunnel through the mountains. Having recently ridden the train up to ski once again, seeing the little yellow school house was something I had completely forgotten about until we past it.
On our return trip, I made sure to have my phone ready to snap a picture before it too was gone. (Hence the blurry picture). It’s interesting now to think of myself as a child riding that train up to ski, the anticipation of the ski trip ahead, and suddenly a glimpse of a time long gone was out my window. That little yellow school had me dreaming about what life was like “back then” when life was simpler. Ironic now, 10 years after that ski trip, and I myself am a teacher, teaching in a time very different than that of the one-roomed school house.
However, that little school house is something that makes me smile, it’s that little piece of lovely to look for on the trip. It’s something that makes me smile and see the good and wonder and whimsy of the world.
I’m not sure about you, but I find myself often snapping pictures of those objects or places that may seem insignificant from the appearance, but really hold so much meaning for the person taking the picture. I love finding those little pieces of lovely, so to speak.
Recently, I finished reading Annie F. Downs’ book, Looking For Lovely, about finding those small pieces of lovely in the world. I love this image that Annie paints, of finding the good and cherishing those moments, whether that be of enjoying moments with friends, or objects that somehow hold significance. This was a book I could wholly relate to, that through our brokenness and our journeys of life, we find these small moments that are a reflection of our own hopes and dreams and joy. Moments that are precious and help us to connect with God.
I hope you are able to take time to look for those moments of lovely in your life. Despite the challenges we may face, my hope for you is that you are able to find times to remind you to smile and see the true depth and value of life. May you too, find a little piece of lovely.
What is a little slice of lovely you’ve found today??