Probably all parents have those "sayings" they repeat often and their kids know by heart. I know I have mine! And if you were to ask my kids, they could probably say several of them without thinking too long.
One of those sayings is in my mind today as I write this blog post.
We left Croatia a few days ago after another summer's vacation spent there. If I'm counting right, this was our 17th summer spent there. The sunshine, brilliant colors, warmth, smells, fresh air, sparkling sea and tasty food all nourish our bodies, minds and souls. We look forward to it every year.
The sights of that country are so different than the one we live in, especially in the southern part. The sky is bluer, the rocks are redder, the houses are smaller, the roads are narrower.
And sunsets have a completely different hue to them, even on the mainland (such as this one taken while we were driving back).
But as we crossed over the borders of Slovenia, Austria and finally into Czech, I said to Dave what I always say, "It's all in the contrast isn't it?!"
While that photo may not look impressive (and it's not...it's just from my phone) I loved what I was feeling at that moment: Home. I'm always more appreciative of home when I come back because of the contrast between "there" (wherever 'there' happens to be) and here.
With blue-ish gray sky, green fields, colored buildings, red roofs and familiar sites, it felt so good to come back home.
In the same way that I love going to Croatia because it's different than here, I love coming back home for the same reason. After a time away, it feels good to be back in this environment.
The contrast between the two places is great, and that's what makes it so special to go back and forth between them. Each place is unique and gives me what I need to flourish and function in life.
It's all in the contrast, appreciating and valuing each one for what it uniquely offers and brings into my life.