Sunday, August 19, 2012

The Art of Enjoyment

Lascassas, Rt 266
This weekend has been one of great enjoyment.  For one, it started with a riding lesson (what a great way to start!) and an evening with friends.  Ask any of my friends and they'll tell you that I really enjoy entertaining, so when my friends came over, I prepared some spare ribs and corn on the cob for us.  Great conversation, great food and a gentle stroll down memory lane, made for the perfect end to a perfect day.  The following day, I decided I'd like to get some pictures of some of the horses at "The Barn".  Maybe even get some pretty landscape pictures while I was there.  On the way back, maybe stop at the little town we drive through and get some shots of their old "Americana" type buildings.  My daughter came with me, and while I was shooting away, watching a lesson in progress and just enjoying being around my four legged friends, she explored the farm and merrily went around giving all the ponies and horses treats.

General Feed Store
The weather was mild, and the day a little overcast which made for some even keel lighting as far as pictures goes.  Took some pretty pictures (and not so great ones as well) and then headed into Lascassas.  This little town literally has a big ol' Baptist church, a Post Office, a general store, a small barber/hairdresser, a vet and a feed store.  All the buildings look to have been built circa 1930's or so (maybe older).  It still has the kind of gas pumps (petrol pumps for my European and South African friends) I grew up with.  Most of the people around there are farmers and so most of the supplies tend to be agricultural in nature.  Whenever I drive through it on my way to "The Barn" I can't help but think what a great piece of "Americana" the little place is.  The quintessential small town America.

 Saturday evening found my hubby and I sans progeny.  What is one to do when faced with a surprise opportunity for a romantic evening alone.  Hit the town, paint it red?  Dinner and a movie ...  Well, almost.  We opted for Chinese take out, a good bottle of wine, and our DVR record list.  Somehow, cuddled up, on our couch with our "Thurdy" (our little dog) watching an episode of one of our favorite shows just seemed so heavenly.

Yellow Pastures
The weekend rounded out with a lovely breakfast at one of our favorite "breakfast joints".   A lovely drive into the country to collect our eldest from our friend's place and some gardening.  There were bushes that needed moving and flowers that needed planting.  I got to use my new electric weed eater.  Sadly, I discovered that there is quite an art to cutting nice clean edges with a weed eater/trimmer.  I obviously do not have the skill, and what started as an attempt to trim nice neat edges along our pathway and drive way ended, in what will be known forever as the "Great Grass Massacre of 2012".  Yes, great big bald patches were weed whacked into the grass in my feverish attempt to get tidy edges next to our concrete paths and driveway.  I have forever been banned from attempting edging again.  General "weed whacking" has been okayed with proper supervision and superfluous supply of those nylon string thingys that somehow magically cut the grass.  I went through three pairs in my attempt to edge around one and a half flower beds.  Apparently, that's not good.  Oh well.
Talking to BP

I share all of this to say this:  In each of those "happenings" there were moments, when I found myself taking a step back and just enjoying the moment I was in.  They weren't big moments either.  If I hadn't paid attention, I might not have noticed them at all.  They would have quietly slipped away, unnoticed and with it an opportunity to make a new memory or to nourish my soul and spirit.  We are all surrounded by so many wonderful gifts in life.  Whether it be wonderful families, great jobs, fantastic friends, loving partners, exciting or fulfilling hobbies.  All these can bring to us so much joy, so much meaning, so much purpose, if we pay attention.  Often we downplay the gifts we have.  We think that what we do or who we are isn't all that important in the larger scheme of things, so we plod through life.  Putting one foot in front of the other, just trying to get from one day to the next.  Yet if we keep our eyes and hearts open, we can catch glimpses of these precious moments that remind us that while we may not be here for a long time, the time we are here can be wonderful.  We may not all be big movers and shakers in this world, but in our little corner of life, we do make a difference.

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