Simple pleasures really are the best, and right now that means daydreaming. As the snow piles up outside my window and the snowplows rattle by, I drift away and remember a lazy afternoon with my toes in the sand and a warm breeze blowing through my hair.
That particular afternoon (and on others like it), while walking at the water’s edge, I collected tide-worn pebbles and shells to take home as a memento of a day well lived. And now, in an old canning jar, they sit by my dressing room window.
Like photos, these jar collections that I have (yes, I have more than one) remind me of the times when I put all of my necessary tasks aside in exchange for a day of stress-free joy.
But, life has a way, most of the time, of making us feel almost guilty about such “indulgences”. There’s so much that has to be done! So, we give in to the never-ending tide of responsibilities and keep pushing back those much-needed escapes until “a better time”.
Not to sound cliché, but there has to be a better way. A better way to find that balance. A better way to deal with the pressures. A better way to not only make time for escapes, but to make the rest of our life not seem like something that needs to be escaped from!
I’m not such a Pollyanna that I believe every moment of every day can be blissful. Bills must be paid, bathrooms have to be cleaned, commutes need to be made in ridiculous weather. But, almost all of what commands attention from us somewhere in between the moment our alarm clocks shock us from sweet slumber and when we finally collapse many hours later back into that same spot can and should be made manageable, and dare I say far less stressful and time consuming.
I am by no means an expert. I get caught up in the day-to-day like a squeaky robot on autopilot. But that jar by the window beckons, every day, with a tiny whisper of “Come to the beach!”. While I fumble half-asleep in meager lighting, trying to get dressed for work with a whirlwind of tasks fighting for position in my brain I simply have no time or patience for such frivolous suggestions. But, by the end of the day, when I am once again in my tiny dressing room, peeling off work and readying myself for my evening agenda of cooking, cleaning and collapsing I tell myself over and over again that I truly must get it together or I will absolutely regret it.
I know that I am not the only person in this big, beautiful world who constantly feels like they are playing catch-up, has far too much to do and far too little time to do it, and is in dire need of a streamlined, pleasurable daily life and far more no-excuses down time. Which is why there are many, many, many methods and ideas on how to make these changes. The only way to find what works is to take a few that call to you and try them on for size. It seems like I’ve just added another major project to my to-do list! However, this project should make all of the others simpler and quite possibly more enjoyable. And, why keep all of the ways and means to myself? I’ve never been one to go on an adventure alone. A roadtrip is so much better with good company!