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time

12 Jul

A friend of mine recently gave me some good advice: never wish away your time.  You can wish you were somewhere else or doing something else but never wish away a minute of the time you have.

It is so common to hear people doing this “I wish it was Friday” or “I wish this day was over”, and we all slip into this mode on occasion without realising what this means.  Time is the one of the most valuable and irreplaceable resources that you can ever possess, along with your health and unconditional love.  There is a finite amount of time available to each of us and we can never reclaim time which has passed us by.

We can hope and plan for the future, we can look forward to things which are yet to come and we can do all this while living in the moment we have right now.

So next time you catch yourself thinking “I wish it was later already” try changing that thought, I’m going to try wishing I was at the beach!

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snippets of thought

4 Jul

I am becoming reacquainted with the lighter side of life. Rising out of a quagmire where I have been neglecting my writing and neglecting this blog. The only constant habit I have maintained is always carrying a notebook and pen so I can scribble any errant thought which holds my attention.

So, while I am getting back into my groove I thought I would begin again by sharing with you a few lines of the snippets of thoughts which have made it to paper in these last few months:

“Nature seeks balance, even in her most eclectic of designs.”

“There is something beautiful in the patterns of flocking birds as they dance across the sky.”

“The play of shadow and sun in the morning mist.”

“Taming the wild garden.”

“As I walk the line between light and shadow.”

“Watching the world stream by in all her many shades of green.”

And with this I am remembering to take happiness wherever it can be found, in the little moments and details of life.  I am remembering to look on the world with the wonder I had as a child and I am reminded that everything in transient and has value even when you don’t see it.

changing habits

22 Apr

The habits of complacency are hard to break.  They sneak so softly into your life you may not even notice them.

It’s so easy to point the finger of blame at things outside of yourself; work, upbringing, love, loss.  But in the end we each choose our own life.  We choose which of our circumstances we accept and which we will change.

It is scary when you realise you’ve gone so far down a path you don’t remember your way back.  It’s scary to commit to change.  To determine that even though you may fall you will keep on getting up and pushing forward.

And so the hero is afraid, and faces failure more often than success.  But the hero picks themself up and tries again and again until in the end they are triumphant.

Yes, it is scary to shake up the pattern of your life however comfortable it may seem.  But it is far more tragic to think you may miss out on life if you don’t.  So out of a desire for life I struggle.  I struggle to find the energies and passions that once drove me to action.  I struggle for momentum and for zest.

I sit here in the morning sun, listening to a magpie’s song.  I am so in love with life, how could I forget.  When I look at the world through a child’s eye, with all its wonders all around, I could not bear to miss a moment of it.

And so I struggle.  And so I must succeed.

new leaf

5 Jan

So a new year begins again.

A chance for a fresh start and endless possibilities.  There’s an energy to the beginning of a new year which encourages us to cleanse last year’s baggage and commit to making change in our life.  Turning over a new leaf.

Everyone is tinged with the aura of celebration and beginnings.

What are you going to do to make this year different from the last?  I am going to change the patterns in my life that hold me back.  How I will achieve this and measure it is another story.  First there are a lot of little milestones to be set, and habits to be changed.

They say it only takes a month to break a habit.  That has got to take some concerted effort.  And you need to know what you are changing that habit for, and what will replace that old behaviour.  Decide where you want to be, what is keeping you from being there and break that down into small singular parts which you can change one by one.

Focus.  Never give up.  Believe.

And so another unwritten year begins…

 

a little piece of the world

10 Dec

It is truly a magical thing to have your own piece of outdoor space, a little corner of land that is your home.

What a privilege it is to be able to go outside and lie on the grass, to look up at the stars.  To enjoy the perfect sharp sounds of the night, and gaze up at the yellow full moon.  Enjoying the songs of crickets.

And then, when the sun rises and the birds sing, how wonderful it is to see the colours come to life.  Butterflies play on the breeze and the world smells green.

It is these little moments of life that make me feel amazingly lucky.

summertime

7 Nov

Summertime is spreading her wings.  Rehearsing for the change of seasons which is almost upon us, and giving us a teasing taste of days to come.

The air is heady with the living green scent of the world.  It is thick to breathe in, and full of heat and steamy summer smells.

The days are longer, and the mornings are brighter, and somehow you have more hours in every single day.

Everywhere the atmosphere is changing, preparing, livening.  People on the streets wear flip-flops and singlets and they bare their legs.  The smell of cooking barbeques wafts in the evening air.  And the slightest breeze is a sighing relief.

Aaah, summer!  Time to watch the world ripen, and to covet the luxury of cool fresh water and to squeeze every extra minute out of every extra day.

mountain vistas

6 Oct

There’s nothing like a drive up the mountain to remind you of the magic and mystery in the world which you recognised as a child.

The winding green drive; bordered by tree-ferns and mountain ash.  And those tantalising peeks to the vast land that stretches out beyond the mountain range.  Even the light is different, charged with vitality and secret life.

I remember wonder.  I remember possibility…

waste not want not

2 Oct

There’s nothing like being on a budget to make you appreciate the value of every little thing you consume.  Every mouthful of food, the electricity that plays your music and powers your computer, each sip of wine and the roof above your head.

And it’s not just the dollar value but the energy that has gone into making the things you enjoy in life.  The energy to dig the garden and nourish the soil, to plant to nurture and to harvest.  Then the energy to chop and flavour and cook.

Given everything that goes into providing you sustenance, building your home, creating your technology and your entertainment, how can we waste any scrap of it?  Why do we buy food we don’t need and then throw it away because it is past it’s prime, or buy a dress because it’s ‘on sale’ and then never wear it?  What is it that makes us feel so indulgent that we think we can waste anything and still expect to have an abundance available to us at our whim?

So, suddenly when we have little or no money we become thrifty and careful.  We count every item we put into our shopping cart and we plan our meals.  We only buy clothes we need, and we sew the holes in our shirt before we get a new one.  We turn off the lights when we leave the room, and only use the heater when wearing a jumper is not enough.

Imagine if we lived like this all the time, even when we are going through a feast phase and have money enough for whatever we want.  Imagine if we were always thoughtful about what we consume and before every purchase asked ourselves “do I really need this?”  Imagine if we never wasted our food, or our water or any of our resources.  What a different more balanced world we would be living in.

So, the question is: what can you do to be less wasteful and more productive in your everyday life?

For me, I am going to try living like I am on a budget even if that is no longer the case.  I will grow any food I can, plan my meals and only buy food I know I am going to eat.  I will compost my waste wherever I can, and recycle everything I can (both in my own home and in my rubbish).  I will chose to buy things that use less packaging and wherever possible things that are made locally and sustainably.  I will turn off the light when I leave a room, and wear a jacket before I turn on the heater.  And I will make a considered effort to think before I buy and to always appreciate the true value of the things I consume.

I hope that we can all change the way we live either a little or a lot, and  I really hope that is enough to make a difference in the world.  I want to live in balance and I want to appreciate that life.  Here’s hoping that consciousness can spread.

simple pleasures

18 Sep

sunshine after rain

long breakfasts

a book that makes you laugh out loud

a song that gives you shivers

smiles from strangers

art that you would not have imagined

a hug from a friend

waking up to a new day

smells that remind you of childhood

the wind in your hair

the way the world looks in the light after a storm

dangling your toes in water on a summers day

the first flower to bloom before spring

getting your hands dirty

memories that make you smile

feeling loved

sharing a good meal

the sound of the ocean

learning something new and discovering your good at it

birdsong

freshly picked herbs

music that moves you

what if?

17 Sep

So what do you do if your whole world turns on its head in a moment?

A moment of realisation, a moment of drama, a moment of unwanted truth.  Just imagine:  life is good, you are (mostly) happy.  You have a home, you have people who love you and people who respect you, you eat good food and you feel like you are achieving things which are valuable.  Then, just a small shift of the dime, and you are suddenly looking at the end of it all.

We all believe ‘it won’t happen to me’, we all believe we are special and significant in some way.  Such striking shifts in fortune are stories told by other people; they cannot be for you.

So, what do you do?  How do you continue when in the blink of an eye your world turns upside down?

Life’s plot twists come in so many forms – it can be sickness, death, loss, change of lifestyle, change of place, violence, accident or just an abrupt shift in your perception of reality.  But suddenly you are living in a different life with no experience in navigating the way.

Maybe you are living in a topsy turvey world where you are vulnerable and lost, or maybe you are still in the land of the main character who always wins.  Either way what are your priorities?  Would your priorities change if your world was ending?  And if they would, why don’t you make those your priority today?

I hope (and am hopeful) that I can enjoy the hero’s life in the future (and yes, yes I know the hero falls down again and again – but they also enjoy the rewards for their determined efforts) and my greatest wish is a peaceful life with the people I love and the fruits of the earth that I enjoy.  But if I could not have that… if I had to accept the inevitable end of that dream then what would I do differently?  What are my priorities in Life as opposed to my priorities to make it from one week to the next?

It is time to go back to the jar of my life, what is important and where do I choose to focus.  And, just in case it breaks and falls apart, is there anyone or anything I am missing from my equation?  So now: prioritise, balance and enjoy.  It may all turn on its head any minute, but surely these principles remain to guide me…