I can't even begin to tell you how much our annual trip to North Carolina was exactly what I needed right now. This past week has been the first time in over three years that I've really been able to stop and rest for a minute. No projects have been hanging over my head, no homework is needing to be done after I put the kids in bed. Nothing has been on the schedule but to spend time with my favorite two people in the world. I'll be honest, the first few days we were here I found anxiety and stress trying to creep in and ruin my trip, but I refused to allow it. Inhaling the mountain air is just good for the soul. There is too much beauty to be seen to spend any time being negative. A day spent at Lake James soaking in the sun extinguished all my cares and worries, and we drove home tired but happy. So many new story ideas floated 'round in my head as I watched the sun set behind the mountains. This place is magic. It nourishes. It energizes. It heals. Happy first day of summer to all of you out there! I hope you enjoy the pictures!