Easter Sunday on the Kayak

♪ ♫ When you dream, dream big as the ocean blue ♪

I spent Easter Sunday morning in a kayak exploring the shores of Tampa Bay with my husband’s 12-year-old cousin, Marinna (pronounced “Marina”). This little firecracker has my heart.

Marinna Jean

She sings. She acts. And she’s as excitable as me. Rarely, you’ll meet someone who kind of… changes you. It’s as if you can feel the difference in your outlook or attitude for the next few days after you’ve spent time with that person. It’s quite impressive that someone as young as Marinna has had such an affect on me.

As I write this, the Nickel Creek song “This Side” is playing, and it’s absolutely accurate of this little girl:

“Take her or leave her she will still be the same…
[She] dreams of colors that have never been made.
[She] imagines songs that have never been played.”

My favorite line of the song is, “Only the curious have something to find.”

Marinna has such a joy for little things like finding a gorgeous field above the water, and bobbing for golf balls that didn’t quite make it across the canal. The amount of happiness I got from those three hours of one-on-one time with a creative, curious and energetic pre-teen has left a mark on my heart.

Marinna and I didn’t go shopping. I didn’t buy her toys or take her to the movies. We grabbed a kayak from the garage and set out for what would become an amazing and memorable morning that cost us nothing. It was the perfect reminder that a minimal life is so much more rewarding than wading through all the clutter. You could argue that someone had to buy the kayak, but if it wasn’t there we probably would have gone hiking or explored somewhere else and had the same result. I want to remember this when I have kids of my own.

We need a world filled with more Marinna’s
… and a dash of Ritalin.