Presents in the Present

Clump #114:  Try to finish Christmas shopping.

A recap: I challenged myself to get holiday-related tasks taken care of in November, so that I might have a stress-free December: Project Enjoy Christmas.  I am sorry to say that I’m still feeling holiday stress in December.  I am, however, further ahead than my norm for mid-December.  Maybe I should be satisfied with crawling before running, much less skipping and leaping for joy.

I also challenged myself to clump and post every day.  Amazingly (to me), I’ve kept that momentum going.  Once I get out of the rhythm of daily posts, the excuses become too seductive and the days not blogging too numerous.

Today I happened to crack open a calendar I bought for next year, one with quotes from Thich Nhat Hanh and beautiful illustrations by Nicholas Kirsten-Honshin.  I had forgotten that the cover was a picture of a bird with a red berry in its beak.


It seems to me that the berry represents the present moment, and the bird is devouring it.  Was I subconsciously thinking of this image while seeking out photos of red berries in the landscape?  Hmm.


I was telling some friends yesterday that taking pictures for this blog has been a lesson about the present moment.  So often I see something I ache to take a picture of, but, for whatever reason, it’s inconvenient to stop.  I’ll tell myself that I can come back later, and I’ll try to bookmark the exact location.  But it’s never the same.  I’m like the proverbial fisherman, bragging about the big one that got away: “Oh, the way the sun was lighting up those gorgeous cows, right next to my car!  If only I had the time/could find a place to park/had my camera …”  I’ve been taught this lesson over and over and over.  It’s never the same.  The sunlight is different, the leaves have fallen, the snow has melted … the cows have gone home.  Change is the order of business around here, and that one moment is the only one exactly like it that you ever get.

To every thing there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven.


I guess I need to have more patience with myself.  In the organization realm I’m a two-year-old wanting to be a big girl.


The change I’m seeking is a little covered-over now, but it’s waiting to shine.


  1. OK, Ms. Anderson I think you can enjoy this.

    “In Wildness,” a coffee table book published in 1962 by the Sierra Club, containing large format color photos of nature by Eliot Porter and selected text passages from Henry David Thoreau.


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