As Spring seems to have officially spring my walks with my dog seem to be getting longer. Soon I will be basking in the sunshine sprawled out on my deck and re-potting plants I always have inside over the winter. My succulents always seem to have seasonal affective disorder, it's as if they release a sigh when at last they can soak in some warmer rays. Their drooped leaves gradually make the shift in pointing upwards, and their colour is once again lively. I think a lot of us can relate!
One of my favorite things about spring and summer is walking out to my garden to see if there is any new growth! I do this literally every single morning. Last year I had my first garden... well technically I had a row in my mom's garden every year as a kid, does this count? I would sometimes enter in those T&T seeds kids garden contests. Did anybody else do those? I was so proud the year I won first prize for my sunflower garden arrangement. My brother Kenton came out last year and helped us build some garden boxes and plan out a brick path for our cute little yard. We even hung up a little birdhouse!
Although Jamie and I have been known to picnic all year round, our winter picnics never compare to our spring and summer ones. Both the beautiful picnic basket from my mother in law and handmade blanket from my Grandma always come along on these adventures. One of my favourites was near a creek bed close to a bridge. My husband Jamie makes the most amazing bread from scratch and is always experimenting with new recipes. This particular time he made a "rustic" bread, which was accompanied by brie cheese, red wine, and an incredible kale salad feta cheese, mandarin oranges, pumpkin seeds, honey lemon dressing~ (I'm the salad maker in our house, if you ever need me to bring a salad if we are visiting let me know!). As we took in the rays and enjoyed each others company, a group or horseback riders passed by. And so many birds and gophers! Being spring, we could see everything beginning to come to life.
Going out to the garden, watching the birds, walking the dog, picnics... these all help put things into perspective. Reminders to simplify and foster gratitude. Simplicity. What does that or should that look life in my life?
If I am stressed, one of my forms of release is cleaning or purging. I think I naturally gravitate towards this form of relief because I can see instant change. It makes me feel as though I may think a little clearer when a space is free of clutter. Simplicity nurtures our spirits. It allows our mind to quiet, our heart to soften, and our eyes to see. When I allow myself to enjoy the simple things I am able to put less focus on myself and more focus on who God has created me to be. I am reminded that God delights in me. How does God want to speak to me today?