Today was an amazing day. That says a lot, because I haven’t had a lot of great days in recent months. I have been struggling a bit with my kids getting older and their need for me is becoming less and less.
I still have things that can fill my day, but there is a difference between filling my day…and being fulfilled. A HUGE difference.
When the kids were younger it was hard to enjoy them, because the days were filled with their wants and needs (mostly wants I admit). And now, I am finding that everything I put into and put aside, in those years is changing….
Life is constantly about finding yourself. It’s one big fat game of duck and weave and get by the best you can. Some days are a struggle and some days are a joy.
This last summer, we did something that was on my bucket list. We went to Hawaii.
It’s amazing how you spend your life building something up in your mind, only to be met with reality. Well…my reality anyway. I loved Hawaii…don’t get me wrong. It changed me. But what I realize is, that while we live in California, we live in one of the grandest places in the world that SO MANY seek out in their bucket lists of life.
When we were in Hawaii, I was struck with so many similarities to California….only the pace of life was better.
Recently I was at a bakery in my hometown, where I met the owner, who was from England. As we spoke she mentioned that while she loved California…she didn’t love the pace. I knew exactly what she was talking about.
For whatever reasons, I find that so many of us are trying to live the pace of “keeping up with the Joneses” that we can’t actually enjoy the moments of life.
In my frenzy of trying to figure out what I want to do with my life, I’m finding a parallel in my bucket list desires, one of which is to taken in every moment and find the specialness in every day.
If you live in California, specifically, Southern California, there is so much to discover in the minutia….
It was a MOST beautiful day today and I didn’t want to go home, so I ventured to the beach nearest me. I sat in my car for a bit, on a cliff where I parked and I admired the ocean and I did my best to just take it all in. But as I sat, I notice people coming in droves from the same direction and I wondered where they were coming from. The street I was on was a dead end, but my curiosity was piqued, so I got out of my car and headed in the general direction from where they came. With in hundreds of feet from my car I saw a sign that read, “Trail Access” and it had an arrow pointed in a direction…so I followed….
Keep in mind, have been up this road a hundred times, but never really paid attention.
As I followed the path, I was blown away with what I saw….a clear path that was laid in between acres of blooming yellow daisies that overlooked the Pacific Ocean. I felt like I had just been let in on a little secret.
I was a bit sad that I had no one to share it with, but I couldn’t help but notice the people I passed, who had already tread the path. People of all ages, shapes and sizes. I smiled as I took in every flower. Strange beetles were either flying about, or trying to bury themselves in the sand. It made me wonder why God created such weird creatures. They seem so confused….
I stopped along the way and took in the moments, the views, the smells, the sounds… The waves crashing on the short just beyond the yellow flowers… just incredible. It was like where the meadows met the beach…. And it’s been around longer than I have known….
As I wrapped around and got closer to the cliffs of the beach, my heart skipped many beats… It reminded me that though I know where we live…I’m not fully aware of what this area has to offer. I vowed to myself to get out just a bit more often and explore as if I’m on vacation.
After being in Hawaii (a major tourist area) and realizing the appreciation I now have for where we live, I find myself hungry for what I have missed all these years. I pride myself in saying I know this place like the back of my hand…but the truth is, I have missed a few veins that need discovery.
I left this beautiful place inspired! It was time for lunch, and I only had a bit of time before I had to pick up from school. I checked my favorite app Yelp (no I am not paid for this) to see what was near, or on the way. I found a small little sandwich shop, with 5 stars in a tucked away area in San Juan, called “The Juice Joint”. Let me start by saying… the best food places are passed by every day!
As I pulled up to this place, I realized I had passed it SO MANY TIMES en route to and fro my journeys. As a matter of fact…I hesitated to pull in, because this looked like a misplaced strip mall. But I couldn’t deny 5 stars, so I pulled in and parked.
As I entered small shop, I was taken by the fact there were people filling the booths. The people working there were machines in the food world. Nice people, who were passionate about their product. I asked for a sandwich that I wanted and asked how they suggest it be served… He offered his advice and I said, “load me up!” If I’m going to try it, I’m going ALL IN! I ordered a second sandwich for my daughter that I knew she wouldn’t eat because of all the ingredients, which basically secured, I would have Lunch for tomorrow! ( I never said I was mother of the year!). On top of that I asked for a fresh fruit smoothie, he gave me options and I chose the one with beets (good for your blood), various berries, spinach, etc…. and I waited….
I got my food to go and within a good few minutes I was off to the races. I found a quiet location to enjoy my lunch, I opened the bag and this is what I got…
I could barely fit my hand around it…. (smoothie in the pic…do die for)
I opened my sandwich, which was complete with Jalapeños (which is why I have lunch tomorrow) and VOILA….
Chicken Salad Sandwich I could barely fit in my mouth, but exploded with flavor.
I’m going to all today #noregrets
As I left the deli, I saw a couple chatting, and overheard the girl saying, “I was taking today off, but I have so much to do….” I stopped at my car and butted into their conversation….I looked at the girl and said, “Take the day off! It’s a beautiful day… screw everything else!” The guy she was with looked at me and said, “Thank you!”
I think we all need that day to wipe everything off the calendar and just explore! No matter where you are, there are treasures in the corners of your universe. Your “To Do” list will be there til comewhat May…. Take a day for yourself….and see what adventures you can have….