While standing at the kitchen sink rinsing dishes, I gaze out the window and find myself easily lured into a simple yet wonderful daydream. I’m outside sitting beneath the giant cedars at the end of the stone path that leads to my art studio. I’m enveloped in the shade, feeling protected and safe while I sit at the little iron bistro table on the studio deck. I take a sip of fresh lavender lemonade then I close my eyes and just let the tension go. I breathe in deeply. I’m listening to the birds, the blue jays in particular, and the soft sound of cooing doves from time to time. The breeze whips my hair around my face and it tickles my nose before I can tuck it behind my ear.
This peaceful scenery within my mind leaves me asking myself the same question that I’ve asked myself most of my adult life: Why don’t you take advantage of more moments that are available to you? Why not accept a pause in life, so that you can have the opportunity to enjoy simple, uncomplicated things like walking down the stone path to be alone with your thoughts?
It’s difficult to explain the exact circumstances behind all the missed opportunities, but there’s no shortage on the list of excuses that dart around in my head, bumping into each other and becoming a chaotic clump of reasons.
Like most people, I’m easily distracted, and of course distractions are everywhere, acting as constant companions in the personal daily grind. It’s hard to switch gears in the middle of a hectic day without causing more stress, worry, or guilt for not staying ‘busy’. For every opportunity to unwind, I can give 5 excuses why I can’t or shouldn’t. I can prove there’s constant laundry, people to feed, volunteer work to catch up on, kid stuff, yard work, housework, time for friends. time to get a handle on things…You see, people depend on me.
But right now it’s quiet in the house and that daydream calls to me. The spicy scent of cedar beckons. I look longingly out the window. This is an opportunity presenting itself. So what do I do? I’ll tell you what I do; I pour myself a glass of lavender lemonade and grab my laptop; That’s what I do!
I accidentally glance at the clock on the stove as I pass by. It’s getting late and I still need to start dinner…the laundry needs to be rebooted too…oh and the plants are probably thirsty…wait, did I get the mail? I sigh heavily, and just as I’m about to set my laptop down I stop myself and say out loud, “Oh no you don’t! Get your butt out there now or you’ll never make it out there at all!”
Hmmm…I make a mental note. New mantra; Get your butt out there now or you’ll never make it out there at all! So with full resolve I keep the laptop tucked under my arm and the glass of lavender lemonade in my hand and announce, (I suppose to no one in particular) “I’ll be down at the studio!”
I wait 3 seconds. No response. So I shrug my shoulders and quietly ( & hurriedly) leave the house through the back door. I walk down the shaded stone path to the here and now as I sit in the shade beneath the cedars listening to the birds sing (especially the blue jays) and occasionally hear the mourning dove’s coo. I close my eyes and feel the breeze ruffling through my hair and caressing my skin.
I take a sip of the lavender lemonade and it tastes positively marvelous!
I smile while sitting alone in this little wonder-corner of my world, appreciating this little window of opportunity to reconnect with myself by slowing the pace. Besides, I know that no one in this family will starve to death if dinner is 30 minutes late.
It can wait. I’m worth it.
And this lemonade truly is delicious.
Curious? Here’s the recipe:.
makes 8 servings
2 cups boiling water
1 cup lavender flowers (we respectfully harvest from our herb garden)
1 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 cup of sugar
2 cups cold water
lavender sprigs for garnish
Place the lavender in a glass pitcher; carefully pour the boiling water over the lavender; cover with plastic wrap and allow to steep for 10 minutes. Strain and discard lavender. Return strained lavender water to pitcher and add the lemon juice and sugar. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Add the 2 cups of cold water and mix well. Refrigerate until serving. Garnish with a fresh lavender sprig if desired.