Kayaking on Raccoon Lake

All photos of Raccoon Lake by Michelene Cain

Every now and then I call a “Family Day”. I want my immediate family there: husband Jim (of course), my two adult kids, Michelene and John, John’s girlfriend Toni and my grandson, Gavin. It’s my way of keeping us connected and supportive of each other. We usually discuss ahead of time what we’re thinking of doing and it’s always something fun.

We were going to go to Cook Forest and canoe on the Clarion River but somehow it just didn’t happen. It’s a two hour drive each way and we’ve all been so busy. My brother in law Chuck mentioned recently that he kayaked at Raccoon Lake (a 10 minute ride from our house) and I was seriously interested.

My friend Mary kayaks and I used to see kayakers on the three rivers in Pittsburgh when I drove into Oakland for work. I have always been interested in kayaking but figured I was past my prime for it. Turns out this is not so. My biggest fear was what happens if the kayak tips over? (thinking my legs would be stuck inside of the kayak)…I asked my brother in law this and he said, “You just pop out. “

He also said you have to wear a life vest and upon hearing that, I was really game.

So we headed down to the lake around 6pm after a nice backyard cook-out, and after laying on the sunscreen and bug spray. The lake was positively gorgeous and well, you judge for yourself. We had a wonderful time!

Do you ever have a “Family Day”? What do you like to do when you get together with family?

Join me on my graceful journey.

Inspired Expression

I saw a beautiful community mural on the side of a brick building last weekend. It was on the Southside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. I couldn’t help myself and walked over to it for a closer look. The colors were what really drew me in.

I have been thinking about the artists who painted such a work of color. Wondered from where they drew their inspiration. My guess is, it was from deep down, in their heart and soul. Perhaps they love color, just like me, and perhaps they love their city. Together those feelings would come together in such a divine way. To have a passion for something that manifests itself in such an expression is truly an inspired gift.

I believe that inside of us all there exists a creative voice. Whether it presents itself through earthy pottery, magnificent culinary creations, delicious baked goods, nature inspired gardens or a comfortable home, it’s there, given to us by divine grace. If we trust the voice and listen, it will be a source of inspired expression. It will fill us with a sense of well being and peace.

For a long time, I worked, focused and lost myself in the day to day grind of things. My poor creative voice must have thought it lost me forever. It feels good to take time and write my Katherine’s Daughter stories. Writing is my divinely inspired expression.

How do you yield to your creative voice? What form does it take? Do you make time for it? Leave a comment and tell us about it!

Join me on my graceful journey.

God Between the Clouds

There was a time when I was afraid of storms. As a little girl, I remember hiding my head under the covers whenever lighting and thunder would strike. I remember telling my kids when they were little that, during storms, God was bowling, just so they wouldn’t be afraid.

Last night, after a whole day in the Pittsburgh suburbs of sun and clouds and clouds and sun, the clouds finally won out. Around 6:30pm, it started to storm. I was meeting some friends at 7:15 and took Route 30 just when the sun was going down and the clouds were letting up.

The sky was so stunning I couldn’t help but stop at a small church and take pictures from the parking lot. Hope you enjoy the shots as much as I did.

Join me on my graceful journey.