life is in the details


Do you see the hedge first, or the houses? Do you see the tiny yellow buds on the topmost twigs, or the green wreath decorating the door? As you walk by, do you notice which tidy post-war houses have their walkways freshly cleared of snow, or do you watch the late afternoon sun as it wraps the neighbourhood with yellow ribbons of light?

I know there’s work to be done and phone calls to make, items to check off my to-do list and projects to finish. But right now I’m busy. Right now I’m outdoors, feeling the cold air on my face, watching the dogs track unfamiliar scents from tree to telephone pole, and listening to the crunch of my boots on the snow-crusted sidewalk. For 30 minutes, nothing else matters more than being here. I don’t have a lot of time, so I want to make the most of it.

Photo taken on January 4, 2010

10 thoughts on “life is in the details

  1. This is something I’ve been trying to do lately – realize that the things that have to get done will still be there in a half an hour, or an hour… and for a while, it’s OK if I just sit back, and do something I WANT to do! GOOD for you!! 🙂

    • You’re right, Holly — it’s like you know there will always be more work to do, and the dustbunnies will keep on multiplying no matter how diligent you are… so why be a slave!

  2. I really like your thoughts here — it’s important to keep track of what’s important. It IS important to feel the cold air in ones face and to listen to the crunch of ones boots in snow, as you so beautifully put it.

  3. When I retired, one of my goals was to slow down, and really see what is around me. It’s one of the purposes of my blog. It’s surprisingly hard to do. We humans seem to be a busy species, always with “something to do” that gets in the way. But, what wonderful rewards we get when we really do take the time to look.

    • I like the way you think, Louise! When I first started posting on Flickr, I chose the name “Seeing Is” (eyeGillian is a variation on the name) because I wanted to learn to see everything around me. I’m still learning!

  4. What a great post! You’ve hit on something that’s close to my heart. Our move to NS from BC has been partly about this. Sorting out what is really important in life, taking time to simply “be” in this place we now call home. Taking pleasure in noticing the little miracles around us. It’s great to be able to see the hidden promise of Spring beneath the snow frosted branches. Glad you see it too!

    • Thanks, Gordon! Learning to notice what’s around you is a good practice wherever you live, although I have a feeling that it’s much easier to see the “little miracles” when you don’t live in an urban environment. Or at least I’ve noticed a lot more wildlife and plants here than I did in downtown Toronto!

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