I was looking for proof that material possessions don’t create happiness and I think I’ve found it on this crazy old camping trip.
I’ve been feeling the fear about this camping trip for quite some time. How would I cope without all the things I need? Funnily enough, it’s been wonderful. My three year old is blossoming in the outdoors with his older cousins. We’ve been hunting for invisible dinosaurs, finding drop bear fur (an Australian mythical creature) and collecting shells with holes in them. At least one of them is real! Otherwise, he bounces and laughs his way through the day, well, except for the HUGE meltdown he had last night, because he had to go to bed before his big cousins (I need to think of a strategy for that one). My three month old is loving all the love.
Gordon is in his element, hunter gathering. Me? I still worry, but I’ve noticed that I’ve been forgetting to worry. I’m not saying that I would want to live in a tent, because I’m not sure I’d be feeling this happy if it was raining. That’s when the material possession of a roof would make me very happy. And here’s the clincher, my crashing moment of realisation!
The roof would make me happy, because it would keep my loved ones dry. I think that’s what I forget about possessions – they’re in our lives to perform roles, do things for us and enable experiences, not make us happy. It’s being and doing that makes us happy.
I wanted to make a touchstone, something to remind me of this time. Maybe, when I’m back in the daily grind, a glance and a touch of the shell will remind me of this time and what I learned out here.
Ingredients (top left pic)
Sea shell with a hole
Bead or pearl
String or skinny elastic
There are lots of different ways to thread the bead and shell and I would seriously encourage you to experiment, but here is my favourite way:
1. Fold the string (or elastic) in half and thread the fold through the bead (top right pic).
2. Open up the end that was inserted through the bead and push the bead and string through (bottom left pic).
3. Thread the string ends through the hole in the shell and tie around the neck (bottom right pic).
What is your favourite holiday momento?