"For some years I have been aware of the importance of each day
and not projecting beyond that day
our spiritual awareness of ourselves and all that is around us,
contact with the natural world and its beauties
sensing the sounds and smells and colors of our world,
accepting the love of others and returning that love -
these are the things that are important
which I relearn I should relish each and every day."
Frank X. Friedman, Jr.*
Yesterday over at her blog Pam challenged her readers "to find something beautiful and write it on your heart."
Rather boldly and with way more moxie than the situation really called for, I commented with something like "bring it on!" I hoped to go to a plant store to get some pointers on making a small garden. And, I wanted to spend some together time with my Sweetie. If I couldn't find something to write on my heart at the garden store, then it was a given that Sweetie would say or do something heart writing worthy.
Our plans were nixed from the get-go. The lady across the street who usually sits with Dad was gone for most of the day which means we didn't go anywhere. By the time my sister arrived from work we were not in the mood for anything but putting some food in the cart and getting the task behind us. I went to bed vowing to write something on my heart tomorrow.
Tomorrow is today. Things were looking up. Church was amazing. After we got home I left Dad in his chair asleep and Sweetie at the kitchen table with a bowl of salsa, chips and his book. I was in the mood for some Merry ME and Mother Nature time. First stop the Treaty Oak.
I've lived in Jacksonville for years and I've never seen the Treaty Oak. In fact, as a kid I'd never even heard of the Treaty Oak. As I pulled out of the driveway, the black clouds opened up and started dripping. However, I was undeterred. I had my Honor Yourself hoodie, an umbrella, and my camera. A little rain (or a lot) wasn't going to stop me.
For some reason, maybe the rain, I was the only one at the park. I had the 250 year old tree to myself. I stood in front of the tree, took it all in, and yes, Pam, I wrote it's beauty on my heart.
I walked around, under, and through the branches. The acorn eating squirrels were pretty upset that their smorgasbord had been interrupted. There was an article in yesterday's paper about how the tree's acorns are harvested by prison inmates, cultivated until they are 5 feet tall, then donated to Greenscape. I decided to collect a few. They were a great metaphor for life - growing big things from something so small. It is really kind of hard to believe, but there it was right before my eyes.
From the Treaty Oak to Reddi Arts.
Reddi Arts is one of my very favorite places to hang out. It's got a little bit of everything - art supplies, spirituality books, a variety of pens to die for, pictures, custom framing, jewelry, toys, cards, cards and more cards. I didn't need another card. Won't need another card until Haley's comet comes around again. But, like the touch and feel and smell of books at Barnes and Noble, this selection of cards soothes my soul. I bought a couple but mostly I spent the time writing the way the serenity felt on my heart.
I had every intention to grab an iced tea at Paneras. I was pretty surprised to find it was closed up tight. As proof that I don't get out much it has been that way since January. It was a very nice afternoon topped off by homemade chocolate chip cookies for me and peanut butter for Sweetie. There was a discussion at dinner about my life's highlights, which led to the memory of when I was the queen of diagramming sentences in the 8th grade. Sweetie asked a few questions, gave me a sentence and bam! just like it was yesterday I broke that sentence down to subject, verb and direct object. "Dang, I'm good" I wrote on my heart as I popped another cookie into my mouth!
“Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Wishing for you something beautiful to write on your heart,
*Friedman was a Jacksonville Environmental attorney and member of the St. John's River Water Management