Carpe Diem

If I knew (really knew) there was an expiry date on my life, would I go inside now and finish my ironing? Or would I polish off this exquisite bottle of 2015 Shiraz, sitting here in my gazebo, surrounded by tall so-typically-Canadian evergreens, backgrounded by the steady rumble of crickets?

Would I worry about the size of my thighs, my slightly too soft “mummy tummy”, how many steps I walked today, and whether or not that small cluster of spider veins will turn varicose? Or would I breathe in this early-night air, feel the August breeze on my skin, flex my toes, and exhale “ahhhh” contemplating how incredibly beautiful it is that I got to be ALIVE on this wonderful summer day?

If I knew my days were numbered, would I let minor annoyances grow into mountainous misunderstandings? Would I fight with my loved ones? Or would I simply whisper: “I love you”and leave the rest to sort itself?

Would I worry about who did me wrong? The time someone hurt my feelings? Would I even have time to think about who dislikes me and why they feel that way? Or would I celebrate the miracle of being completely, totally MYSELF?

The truth is, we are all mortal. Not one of us will be around forever. Some are awakened to this fact. Others still sleep.

As for me? I want to embrace and enjoy every single minute of this One Precious Life.

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The Choice of Joy

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I choose to walk a path of joy, in all circumstances

I know this is not always easy; that in every life, circumstances come and go. Some are conducive to happiness, while others bring pain.

Yet, still, I choose happiness.

I am committed to finding at least one beautiful blessing in life each day – even if that blessing is as “ordinary” as a warm comfortable bed, a beautiful sunrise, or a lovely gentle breeze on my neck. I want to focus on what is available in the here and now that has potential to bring joy. I want to nurture that joy. And I want to pass it on.

This does not mean there are never days of tears, fears or sadness. It just means that, along with all the other emotions I am feeling, I will also pay attention to the ones that bring a smile to my face. I hope others will smile too.

I choose the road of joy. I hope you will too.

Albert Camus

Loving the Shift

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What a wonderful, warm summer we are having here in my neck of the world. Pink skies, clear silver moons, and gentle warm breezes are filling the days and nights. How lovely after a few years endured with cold winters and short, overcast summers.

I feel this shift. And I love it.

The past seven years have taught me about shifts; about how there is really nothing to be feared in change; that things are always moving forward and transitioning.

I have come to accept that this constant motion of evolution is healthy. I can no longer imagine a life of no change, or, rather, a life that lacks acceptance to change. (I imagine such a life would be spent with clenched jaw, fixated eyes, and fingers desperately holding on to what has already come and gone)

My (very infrequent) posts since September have eluded to a sense of my own personal life in a transitioning period once more. Nothing major – no big drama or chaos this time – just a subtle and gentle shift of circumstance and focus.

My eldest daughter moved out last September, while my youngest has moved  back in  with our darling little Grandson in tow. My home has once again altered itself. What was recently a very adult home with wine, cheese, and long, deep discussions, has become a busy, slightly tousled abode hosting a busy preschooler with a continual background theme of Kids TV, quick little footsteps, shooting of webs (he’s a Spider Man fan)  and messy kisses.

I embrace this change of circumstance, for I know that nothing lasts forever. The time I am blessed to spend in this chapter of life will be short. Like all seasons are short. Even the ones that last 20 years. At the end of the day, life is short. I am committed to embracing each and every precious moment of it. Even the moment where said youngest daughter’s kitty jumped on the dream car, causing a couple claw scratches by the door handle …. (Yikes!)

Yet still, life is good.

In keeping with the transitional theme, My Magical Garden (which I have written about in a couple previous posts) has been changing too. This year there are less of our wonderful strawberry plants. I thank them for their stay and bless them on their way. They taught me so much about the beauty of letting go of what cannot be controlled.

In their place, Lavender bushes (which were once tiny dry plants I frankly thought would not endure their first winter) are flourishing. Their sweet fragrance makes me smile. Are they here to teach me about hope, endurance, perseverance?

Or are they just here to enjoy – no over thinking or spiritualizing?

Hmmm, maybe they are here for the bumble bees and butterflies. Yes, I think that is it!

Last Friday, I drove to the commuter station in the dream car, roof down and stereo cranking out my favourite 80’s tunes. I arrived early (a novelty these days, so close to vacation time) and had a few extra moments to simply enjoy …. beautiful pink sky, wonderful gentle breeze, awesome full silver moon.

How wonderful to be exactly where I am right now.

How I love this shift.

 

My Magical Garden – A Sequel

Last May I wrote about a very special garden in the front of our home. This garden had a mind of it’s own, and would not yield to any of my attempts at planting flowers. Eventually, I gave up and simply plopped a strawberry plant container on it to conceal the empty space. Surprisingly, at the end of the summer, the strawberry plants grew over the container, and somehow planted themselves into the soil of this magical garden. A few years later, another surprise flower emerged. If you are interested, you can read the rest here.

This fall has brought another surprise for our family – this time in our backyard, near the lavender and herb garden. A beautiful deep pink carnation has somehow joined us growing in between the stones of our walk-out patio. What is so amazing is that there are no carnations in any of our gardens.

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I am so grateful for this small miracle.

The blessings of nature abound when our eyes are open to see them;

when our hearts are open to receive them.

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Miracles are a retelling in small letters of the very same story which is written across the whole world in letters too large for some of us to see. – C. S. Lewis