Tag Archive: food

On Being Present

Being present has been on my mind lately. It’s funny because it seems that the 2 occasions when one is fully present are:

1 – when you’re purposely thinking about it, consciously being present
2 – when you’re completely not thinking about it, when you’re really into what you’re doing

Here are some times when I feel I’m the most naturally, effortlessly mindful and present:

 Being Barefoot

Walking barefoot connects you with the earth, lets you feel every single step you take, makes you conscious of where you walk to avoid stepping on something unpleasant. You can’t walk barefoot outside without having your mind on the sensation. It’s like seeing the ground in extreme detail through your feet. Every pebble, every crack in the sidewalk, the soft coolness of grass, the heat radiating from sun-warmed pavement, the resistance of rock, the yielding of sand.


Found it!

The passing of the geocache.

It’s like being Indiana Jones without the bad guys chasing you. Finding clues, searching for treasures, opening containers to see what others have left – it’s SO fun!  I find that when my little posse and I go geocaching, we seem to be very ‘in the moment’. Each little step or discovery that gets us closer to our find is so exciting. Watching my son find a cache, talking about where we think the clues are leading, searching through the cache once it’s found and looking at each article, deciding what we’ll leave behind for the next treasure hunters – it’s always an adventure and we never miss a moment of it as it happens.

Eating grapes

I make a point of enjoying each grape that I squish in my mouth. I bite down just enough to crack the skin, then kind of stick my tongue in and turn it inside out so that the next bite is a crazy splash of juicy, grapey goodness.


I love yoga. I really do. But I have to admit that my favourite part is the ending when we lay there and relax. It’s unbelievable to me that doing ‘nothing’ could feel that amazing. The whole class feels good, but the relaxation, integration and inner focus is so centering and energizing. Afterward I feel like I’m back on track, fresh and balanced and renewed. There’s just nothing like it.


Sleepy boy on a boat ride.

My little guy taking a rest on my lap during a ride up the creek.

Being close to another person, close enough that cuddling is something you do together, is one of the best things in the world. The warmth of your co-cuddler, their smell, the fact that they find comfort in being close to you as well. It’s hard not to pay attention to that.

So….can I apply my ability to be in the now to other situations?

If I can eat grapes mindfully, then why do I stuff popcorn in my face? Perhaps I could use my grape-eating mindset when eating popcorn, enjoying each kernel, feeling its texture and fully tasting its salty, buttery deliciousness as it dissolves in my mouth. (Ok, I think I can see why I inhale it.) If I can live each moment of geocaching, why not try to be fully present while grocery shopping? Can I smell the freshly baked bread as I pass the bakery? Do I feel the chill of the coolers in the dairy aisle? Do I realize how many germs are on the handle of my grocery cart?

How about you…?

After much practice and training of your mind, do you think it becomes easier to slip into being mindful and present on a regular basis? When are you the most mindful?

Potluck Chi

I consider myself to be on a bit of a quest. I’m not traveling the jungle with a fedora and whip (while looking exceptionally handsome), but am merely seeking a little education and understanding. It’s a lazy quest, really. The kind where the object of desire comes to you. The idea of chi or energy has fascinated me for some time. I know it’s there, but I just don’t totally get it.  I can see how it makes sense that there’s something that flows through, between and among us all. Through people, animals, plants, objects, the planet, the universe etc. An underlying interconnectedness and source of everything. For some reason though, there’s a link missing for me. An elusive spiritual Lego block that will undoubtedly join stuff together into something I can comprehend and begin to effectively apply to daily life. I’ll be able to see it everywhere. Man, it’s gonna be great.

A friend of mine that seems to ‘get’ the concept of chi, said to me that you should never cook while angry or sick because your negative energy will flow into/become part of the food you’re preparing and will be passed on to others. So I, of course, applied logic to the situation and came up with this: since energy can be neither created nor destroyed, it does kinda make sense that the energy used to prepare a meal could become part of the dish itself. How could it not? It’s not still in my hands, not still in the garden where the sun’s energy and the energy released by chemical reactions during photosynthesis contributed to the growth of that juicy tomato. All of these energies have come together to create a dish, so why would there not be some residue of each of them still in it, while it sits steaming on the table ready to be devoured? And it seems plausible, from my uncertain scientificospiritual  perspective, that if one is preparing a meal while in despair, pain or while thinking poisonous thoughts, the meal itself could be affected by that negativity. I mean, if you think about it, doesn’t negativity have a serious infectious quality? Don’t you feel crappy being around someone that’s negative? And don’t you feel lighter and happier being around someone that’s positive? So if just being around negativity/positivity can have an affect on you, why wouldn’t food prepared by that actual person’s physical and mental efforts contain some of their energy?

yummyNow think about being at a potluck. The table is full of various dishes created by friends and family all containing little bits of their energy. It’s a pretty amazing way to share yourself with someone. Taking part in something created by another person, when you look at it this way, is kind of intimate. Let’s look at what energy is actually expended in preparing a dish for a potluck….

How cute is this?

  • a decision is made about what to bring after discussion, thinking, looking through recipes, checking the cupboard
  • a trip to the store or garden is made to gather ingredients which are specifically chosen for the occasion
  • time is set aside for preparation of the dish, perhaps a schedule is rearranged a bit
  • thought is put into an appropriate transport vessel, taking required temperatures into account
  • you might consider the presentation – not gonna use your crappy old casserole dish, but the one with the nice lid or whatever – more thought and searching the cupboards is required for this

That’s a lot of energy. Each dish on the potluck table contains a little bit of everyone…. Aunt Mary’s maternal caring nature and Uncle Joe’s dread at attending yet another family function.

What’s in your dish?

%d bloggers like this: