'And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the
greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don't believe
in magic will never find it.' ~Roald Dahl

Summertime and the Livin's Easy

The ancients called July "the dog days of summer" for the plentiful food supply and hot, sultry weather lent too much free
time which led to boredom and bickering. The longer daylight hours do seems to stretch the day so that many of our
households suffer the same fate. Kids are out of school. Adults restlessly pacing the house in search of some frivolity that
will distract and steal the time away. Yet outside nature bursts with abundance just waiting for us to take advantage of
the glorious weather. Now is the time for long walks in the park, swimming at the neighborhood pool, picking berries,
backyard barbecues and family vacations! Indeed, July is when many of our most cherished childhood memories were made:
of days spent at grandma's, of afternoons eating watermelon in the backyard with cousins while aunts gathered on the
porch and uncles around the barbecue. One can only smile when recollections of past fireworks and gazing up at an
explosion of color drifts across ones thoughts.  

What will your children remember? Are you spending this month locked inside? Don't let your life pass you by. Round up
your family and plan a trek outside. Create some wonderful new memories of your own. Whether you visit a seaside,
lakeside or park you'll find nature waiting in all of her glory. Just take time out of your routine to reconnect with the natural
world. Allow yourself to move within its slower, more harmonious rhythms as you open your eyes to the world around you.
Take in the trees, the flowers, the birds calling over head, the antics of the squirrels as they frolicking in the trees. Breathe
deep the scent of rain and smile. There is magic all around just waiting to be discovered. Allow yourself to glory in the
sight of the sun setting on a myriad of waves as you stand on a beach. Rejoice as you splash in the cool water or gather
around a bonfire to swap stories. This is the stuff of summer, the fluff that memories are made of! It is in nature that we
can reconnect to the Divine. We need only listen to the subtle whispers and nudges as Spirit speaks to us.

This month make a conscious effort to slow down and become aware of your surroundings. Go outside and see for yourself.
The signs of the Divine are everywhere. You just need to be receptive to experience them. As Eden Phillpotts once said,
"The universe is full of magical things, patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper."  It's true, we are surrounded by
wonders most of us are blind to. Open your perception and venture outdoors. Take a moment to read the sacred in your
daily walk understanding that spirituality is not to be found in a sacred space only on Sundays but also in the moments of
our everyday lives. Reconnecting with the natural world is an easy way to encounter the divine as you come to understand
that life is a sacred journey and spirit is at work around us in all things: In the power of the wind at the approach of the
thunderstorm, at the brilliance of the setting sun, in the wonder of the tiny bird as she weaves her nest. It is in these
small moments we come to Spirit. It only takes opening to these wonders to allow the blessing of the natural world to
enrich your life. Be present. Welcome the day, share a laugh, appreciate your blessings. It is in these small heartfelt
moments that we find the divine. When we are thankful for what we have and all the potential we have to be, we are able
to celebrate our blessings, glory in our friends and loved ones. It is in the moment that we take a conscious breath, that
we wake to the divine.  By utilizing the elements of the natural world in a conscious way to further our spiritual
connections, we enable ourselves to better observe the emerging life that is unfolding all around us on this awesome
planet we call home. Your life is waiting. Take your children by the hand, open the door and venture outside.