Visitors

Spritely spirits speaking in whispers

Tiptoe by below my open bedroom window

I hear the laughter in their footsteps

And long to join them bathing in the moonlight

Skipping across the yard

They stop to say good evening to the three ladies in the cottage

Then continue on into the veiled night

I

The painting above is Midsummer Eve (1908) by Edward Robert Hughes. It was a source of inspiration for my poem “Visitors”.

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Snail’s Pace

This wonderful little snail slithered ever so slowly across my lawn the other day as I weeded the veggie garden. I watched it for a long while before deciding I definitely had the time to grab my camera from the house. That snail was not going anywhere fast.

The stretching and reaching it did to move itself along was fascinating and considering its mode of transport it actually moved at a decent pace. I was most amazed when I reached too close to move a blade of grass to see it retract its tentacles into itself!! The photos don’t do it justice. The wonder of Mother Nature.

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Fresh (Frittata)

This morning wonderfully fresh. Cool breeze and a just warm enough sun to make it a delightful summer morning. It’s that time of year for sure so “Fresh” is a re-occurring theme. Just a week or so back my post title was “Fresh!” showing my freshly picked radishes from the garden.

Here’s my impressions of fresh frittata made with fresh produce and fresh eggs from our hens.

My son and I sautéed leek, asparagus, red pepper and threw in some fresh thyme. Then combined the veggies with several beaten eggs and topped with swiss cheese. Fresh, fast, and delicious.

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Now to Learn the Art of Rolling

For a very long time I thought I just hadn’t figured out the right balance. I thought that when I finally got everything piled correctly at either end of the proverbial scale things would feel easier, would feel right. But, be it the work/life, family/self, exercise/rest equation, I never seemed to quite manage which ever two opposing forces were weighing on me.

I wondered why?

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In retrospect and through plenty of introspection (navel gazing…call it what you will) I can emphatically say, yes, I tend toward an all or nothing approach to things. I mean go big or go home right. And if you’re all or nothing in all aspects shouldn’t they balance out?

Anyway, all or nothing wasn’t working for me, so I moved to moderation, moderation, moderation (yawn). Aside from being boring, the balance still never came. Things were no longer frantic but that unsettled feeling remained.

So I decided to dump the balance. I mean I hopped right off that linear, horizontal notion.

Rather than continue to spend more and more energy scrambling back and forth seeking the sweet spot of equilibrium than on what I was actually doing in life, I stepped off the scale and centred my life.

Huh? (With a raised eyebrow.) What? (I know that’s what you’re thinking.)

To be centred…for me, it means I’ve put the things that matter the most to me at the core of my decisions and actions. That is, earlier this year I began to truly focus my energy on my family and my life at home.

To some this might seem like I’m moving backwards, or maybe anti-feminist or even selfish but wiser people than me have ascribed to the “what other people think of you is really none of your business” philosophy so I’m going with that.  

What I know is I don’t have that unsettled feeling anymore. Things feel right. Problems and challenges have not disappeared, in fact, new ones have emerged but somehow there now is a sense of calm without boredom.

I can’t pinpoint a specific date or event that led me to let go of the idea of balance and transition to thinking in terms of being centred but the shift has brought a sense of relief and revitalization.

Here’s how this change in thinking and acting feels.

Imagine a restaurant server holding a large unbalanced tray at shoulder height, zigzagging through tables and past patrons while struggling to keep the wobbling tray aloft. That’s how I felt before – a lot of the time.

If you’ve ever thrown a clay pot on a pottery wheel you know the feeling of being centred. The clay is still and calm in your hands. You’ll also likely know the feeling of being off-centre. The pushing and pulling. The knowing that you’re going to have to fight the clay to get the sides to rise and when they do, one side of the wall will be thin and the other thick and the opening will swing wildly out of orbit. You might be able to salvage the pot if you slow down and trim the top but often the vessel will just collapse on itself.

For me, the idea of balance functioned on a linear plane. Opposing forces at opposite ends. Only two sides to the equation. If it’s wasn’t on that particular linear plane forget it, it wouldn’t work in life

Rather, thinking about being centered invokes a global sensibility. I now imagine my life as a sphere where I can consider multiple (maybe infinite?) aspects – not just two. It allows the simultaneous consideration of family, work, love, health, spirituality, creativity, growth and whatever else is going on. Depending on what gets put at the center of that shiny marble, or ball of gel, or however you visualize it, that sphere simply moves in a different direction. Nothing falls off, nothing tumbles down. There is no catastrophic collapse and failure of an unbalanced and tipping scale.

Thinking about being centred gives me freedom – opportunities – options to totally jump to another spot in the globe of life and things will readjust. Relationships and interests may alter their locations but they’ll still in my sphere.

With this change of thinking I feel enveloped and supported by all that is in my life instead of at constant odds. There is a simplicity, gentleness and ease to living.

Now to learn the art of rolling.