I was fortunate to start off my summer by taking a trip with my husband.  We had 7 straight days of camping, canoeing, hiking, fishing, reading and watching the clouds roll by with no cell service or internet connection.  This was a fantastic way to reflect on the school year, relax, and re-charge.  As I mentioned in my first Message from the Head of School, I attended the AMI Montessori Congress in Prague with a few North Star faculty at the end of July.  I enjoyed walking around the city and observing the myriad of architectural styles.  Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, and Cubist buildings are side by side blending together to showcase centuries of growth and development in the city.  The Dancing House (pictured below), also called Fred & Ginger, was designed by a Croatian architect and Canadian-American architect, Frank Ghery.   It was completed in the late 90’s and while locally controversial,  certainly attracts a lot of tourists and adds some additional flare to the overall cityscape.  The congress itself was most certainly a highlight of my summer and the inspiration manifested throughout the congress will continue to fuel my day to day work and long-term goals for the school for years to come. 

With some flexibility in my work schedule over the summer, I was also able to do a motorcycle-camping trip around the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State, have a short visit with my family in Ontario, hike around the local area, and spend some time on the water.  Something I really appreciate and will never take for granted is the beauty, tranquillity and importance of the nature that surrounds us here in BC.  The Salish Sea, rivers, lakes and forests that are at our doorsteps are magnificent and while they are the driving forces of the water cycle, play an essential role in sustaining human life, reduce carbon dioxide, produce oxygen and provide aquatic and animal habitat, they also serve as the perfect ‘get-away’ when we only have an hour or two at the end of the work day!