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Monday, 23 May 2011

Monday Musings

Monday morning and yoga day - time for some musings along the way and indeed even whilst I am supposed to be relaxing and letting go (something I find really difficult!) at the end of the lesson! I became aware as I walked along that the summer flowers were in full bloom and the leaves had lost that wonderful soft Spring green and were now the full blown darker colour of summer - I wanted to shout "Stop!" things are going too fast and I fear it will be all over before I have actually become properly aware of it all.

These flowers will be blackberries before we know it and autumn will be just around the corner! Life seems to rush by ever faster and I wish I could slow it all down so as to really enjoy it all!

I thought of the 5 senses and how we take them so much for granted and yet how wonderful it is to be able to SEE such flowers as these beautiful dog roses which carried me back to childhood days when I used to have all the time in the world to appreciate the flowers in the hedgerows as I meandered along. Why not now? I have no job to go to, no children to care for, I am retired so one might think my time was in even more abundant supply but it certainly doesn't seem that way.

I resolved to try and slow my life down a little - to take time to literally SMELL the roses to appreciate the perfume of wild bluebells, the smell of freshly roasted coffee or of the earth after summer rain (something I noticed when we lived in France was that the earth didn't smell the same as English soil after rain - now why would that be I wonder?) I plan to try and notice and record the smells I come across each day - well the nice ones anyway!

Another childhood favourite and I was transported to the meadows of my childhood and the feeling of grass beneath my bare feet. Then I thought of other things which I love to feel - the softness of cashmere, the smooth hardness of glass or polished wood, the texture of silk, the velvety softness of a rose petal or the hairy stem of a daisy in my fingers and again thought perhaps I could spend some time noticing such things and noting them in a journal.

Then came TASTE - I don't know about you but I don't really taste my food. I eat it and enjoy it but I can't say I properly appreciate it and eat mindfully enjoying the textures and flavours of each mothful. Perhaps if I slowed down my eating I might eat less as I would really notice what I was eating and feel satisfied sooner? Maybe then I wouldn't have to sit waiting for my husband to finish his plateful before I can dash on to the next! The tastes I remember as a child seemed much more distinctive and the sense of taste sharper - was that because it was all so much newer then whereas now I have tasted it all before? Or do the tastebuds lose their ability to taste? Maybe it would be a good idea to try out new tastes and recipes - to cook things that required more love and attention occasionally and to really notice what they taste like.

Finally came the sense of HEARING. I have written before of the sound of birdsong but there are so many other sounds that I hear but how often do I really listen? The sound of water rippling over stones, of the wind in the trees (today was really windy) sounding for all the world like the sea, favourite music, church bells, the sound of a bee in the garden and so on and perhaps most of all the sound of a loved one's voice (I haven't been able to speak with my daughter for nearly 3 months now that she is travelling in South America and what I wouldn't give to hear her voice saying "Hiya Mum" across the miles - an e-mail isn't quite the same!)

Yes I think it is time to slow down my life a little, to truly appreciate each and every day - who knows whether I will get the chance to HEAR the cuckoo next year, to FEEL the breeze on my shoulders on a summer's day, to TASTE the first strawberry of the season again, to SEE the first spring green leaves beginning to unfurl or to SMELL the delicate perfume of primroses. At this stage in life (or at any stage really since we none of us know what might be round the corner) I should be thinking of each day as a blessed gift and really appreciating it for all it brings and not dashing faster towards my destiny busy doing things that in the greater scheme of things are of not much importance.. Several of my friends have died in recent years and it ought to be a reminder to me to Seize the day! I mean to try anyway.

PS Anyone know why when I try to post a comment on anyone's blog it now asks me to select a profile whereas it used to automatically come up with Marigold Jam? Have been to several blogs and can't post a comment until I know what my profile is!!


  1. Monday is yoga day for me as well. :-) Some great thoughts there that we all should take notice of. The blossoms are looking lovely at the moment with all the different plants beginning to flower, or turn into fruit.

  2. Very wise thoughts Jane,something for all of us to think about!
    Wasn't it windy today, goodness there are leaves everywhere and they didn't even get the chance to go brown
    Vivienne x

  3. What an interesting post. Time does go by far too fast, and I feel often that I havent spent enough time simply appreciating things.

  4. Jane,

    What a thought provoking post.
    I suppose, at times, we all rush through life and do not take the time to appreciate the little things.

    I, like you, have lost friends and family of a relatively young age.
    I am blessed that I am able to appreciate life, most of the time. Little things make me smile, and hold my attention....enough to give me a feeling of peace and serenity.
    I hope you do take time to smell the flowers.......we all need those moments.

  5. A very true but somehow a really sad post. I too am retired and rushing around like a loon most days. My daughter is about to have her second child, they have just moved house as has my son. Luckily for me they are still within walking distance. But their new enthusiasm for their new homes has made me want to remodel mine and refresh everything, so i don't think the fireside and slippers will be mine for a while yet.

  6. I long to take things more quietly and appreciate what's around but even though we're retired we're locked into someone else's awful unnecessary routine so spend all our time clock-watching. We should all take time to smell the flowers and listen to the birdsong. Let's start a campaign to seize the day and gather our rosebuds!

  7. This is a beautiful post and I couldn't agree more. Perhaps starting a journal would help you think more about what you experience each day. Good luck, I'd love to know how it goes.
    Anne xx

  8. A lovely thoughtful post.
    I feel very fortunate in retirement (well, part-retirement) that I can allow myself to savour some of these experiences, and also to become lost in thought.
    But it is a discipline, paradoxically. Keeping a journal helps, I find.

  9. Yes, I couldn't agree more Jane, but I don't do it either. I will try to pause a little more from now on. Enjoy your sensory week! x

  10. A lovely, thoughtful post - have you ever read the books by Thich Nhat Hanh on mindfulness? I think you would enjoy them as he talks about much the same thing.

    Pomona x

  11. A "sensory" journal sounds a lovely thing.

    Think the "thing" re being asked for profile usually occurs if you haven't signed into your own blog before leaving a message on someone elses............. (only a thought, mind, because Blogger does tend to have a mind of its own ;O))

  12. What a brilliant post Jane, you have a wonderful way with words and a knack of making us stop and think about what we have - in a good way. I also have had a terrible trouble trying to leave comments - blogger wouldn't let me sign in to make a comment. I could sign in to my dashboard, but as soon as I visited a bog it signed me out. I am now writing this on my laptop using Google 'Chrome'to access the internet, and it seems to be behaving, but who knows, it's a mystery to me!

  13. Great post - note to self must try to slow down. (Voice in head - but then you won't have time to do everything!). Constant dichotomy!

  14. A wonderful thought provoking post. I truly appreciate having the five senses and would never take having them for granted. As I grow older I am much more appreciative of the nature around me and feel a need to be close to it each day. x

  15. Some wonderful thoughts coming from your way Jane. I totally agree with your sensory philosophy but also find it difficult to put into practice, despite my weekly yoga!

    I love your last post on Thomas and catnip


  16. Carp Diem indeed Jane, that was a great post, once again full of thought and beauty.
    Have a fabulous weekend, enjoy the sunshine, and call your daughter!


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