Saturday, June 22, 2013

Just Breathe!

We live in a busy world, even here in rural Nova Scotia, believe it or not. Life can become crazy with a 'ga-zillion' things to do and an ever increasing 'to do' list constantly being played over and over again in our brains. There just doesn't seem to be enough hours in the day to accomplish everything that we want to do and life can get out of hand, IF we don't take control and slow the pace down a bit.

I was on my way to host a bake sale at our local hardware store, this morning, when I passed by a farm. There standing in the front pasture was a baby calf. Oh, I know a calf is a baby cow but this one looked especially young. As the van was speeding past I thought to myself that I should take the time to stop and really see this calf, so I did. I found the next driveway to turn around in and I went back to the farm. As I parked the van in the driveway, the farmer came out to see what I was doing there. So I explained that I just had to admire his baby. He was so pleased and told me that although I had thought the calf to be nearly new born, he actually was six weeks old. I got to see the star between his eyes and the wet of his nose, things that  I just couldn't see while speeding down the road. I got to talk to a nice man too and all this only took 5 minutes out of my busy day. I'm glad I stopped.

While I was at the bake sale I met a nice couple from Rhode Island. I knew they were 'from away' because they didn't know what a 'war cake' was. I explained that it was a local fruit cake that was made during the war years when white sugar was hard to come by. They were fascinated with the story and bought one. I found out they summer nearby in Ingomar and that they love the area. I also found out that they have a Gordon Setter. Now, everyone knows I am a crazy-about-dogs, dog person and I haven't seen a Gordon in several years so I had to see this one. The owner told me to go out to her truck and see 'Skipper' which I did. He was so friendly and wiggly and let me kiss the top of his head. Again, something out of the ordinary only took a few minutes of my day but my day was so much the richer for it.

Sometimes we go through life so uptight and busy that its almost like we are holding our breath. Its important to remember to breathe. Nothing is so important that it can't wait for five minutes. Sometimes its those five minutes that add so much to our lives. Somewhere along the line we bought into the idea that in order to have a feeling of fulfillment we have to live a life that is busy. I don't know where that idea came from but it doesn't work.

To live a life of fulfillment you must stop and breathe. Smell the roses, so to speak. Actually see what's around you. Take notice. Look for the details and you will be more content. I promise. Find a quiet time each day to spend with God. Its easy to buy into the idea that we must all be busy doing this and that and going here and there. We've gotten so far off track that we are raising a generation that doesn't know how to play. We expect more and more out of them that even their extracurricular activities become work and not for enjoyment. Take time to catch bugs with your kids and to chase fireflies on a summer evening. Teach them to distinguish the differences in the songs each bird sings. Choose simple over complicated and busy. And remember to breathe.

War Cake

2 cups sugar
2 cups raisins
1/2 cup butter
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cloves
boil for 5 minutes and allow to cool
then add:
1 cup cherries or dried cranberries (if desired)
3 cups flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup warm orange juice
pour into a tube pan and bake at 350 for approx. 1 hr. 

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