EXPRESSING MY APPRECIATION FOR LITTLE JOYS
Several years ago, I became more aware of my appreciation for life’s Little Joys. I actively sought them out. I didn’t have to look far or put much effort into finding them. They were, and are, around me every day. These treasures come bundled in gratitude, reverence, nostalgia, and humor. At times, I capture some in photographs and post them to Instagram and Facebook; at other times, I write a blog post like the one titled Little Joys Part 1 from April 2015. More often than not, I just stop, allow my Self to be fully present, and imprint the moment on my heart and soul. These memories later flow out of me and into my artwork.
STOP AND SAVOR THE MOMENT
Some treasured experiences are so fleeting that all I can do is stop and savor the moment. After a playful session in my art studio, I laugh at the rainbow of paint on my hands and most likely, somewhere on my clothing, too. A single leaf flutters past on the crisp autumnal wind; I float with it. Sunlight dances on a sycamore’s mottled bark; I let my eyes dance over it’s surface wishing my hands could touch it, too. The snow falls with the distinct sound of silence; I let the silence wash over me and fill me. As I dress, I pay attention to the feel of various fabrics against my skin- the practical warmth of wool, the snuggly comfort of polar fleece, the luxurious softness of velvet, or the heightened femininity of lace. The strong, bold taste of coffee in a ceramic mug delights all my senses; the feel of the mug warms my hands as the coffee warms me inside. Obviously, my list goes on and on with all the Little Joys that reveal themselves to me!
MY MOST TREASURED MOMENTS ARE SMALL
While I love life’s big adventures, my greatest appreciation is for treasured moments that are “small”. Julie Cameron writes in her bestseller Finding Water, “Life is made of small sweetnesses, and they come to us when we are willing to be little, instead of big.” She goes on to say, “Sometimes, we must play the sleuth with ourselves, asking ourselves what makes us eager. We must follow our noses and allow ourselves to pursue curiosities.” I agree with Julia, that at times we may be out of touch with ourselves and need to ask, “What makes my heart sing?” But for me, more often than not, I don’t have to analyze my Little Joys. I need to step out of my own way and simply allow them to be. They having a way of finding me!
TO FIND LIFE’S LITTLE JOYS
When life is super-busy, it’s easy to miss the Little Joys. I’m preoccupied with to-do lists, obligations, and errands. I’m reflecting on the past and planning for the future (as every good teacher does). It’s at these times that life gives me a reminder (sometimes a friendly reminder, sometimes a not-so-friendly kick in the pants!), saying, “Be still and notice what brings you joy. Fill your life with more of that and savor each precious moment! Take time to share your little joys with the special people in your life.”
What are your Little Joys? I’d love to know.