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December 12 – Today is a Present – Stretch and Rejuvenate – Red Lentil Dal

Meditation on Seizing The Day

I am dedicating my blog this week my friend Diane Murphy who we lost far too young last week. In reflecting on her passing, and her very vibrant personality, it again brought home to me the importance of living every day to its fullest. How many events or circumstances will have to occur in our lives for us to get that? Maybe you are reading this and saying, I am already there, I learned that lesson and I savor every day as a gift. If that is the case, bravo to you! I am not, but I vow to continue trying. We get one life, there is no dress rehearsal.

Short story to demonstrate what I am thinking. I am driving with my husband and say, “I got us all some new holiday pajamas”. He says, “I hate holiday pajamas”. Turns out he hates the idea of people wearing matching pjs, taking photos and putting them on FB. That I would have known, we have been married since before FB was invented (even the internet). We had a little discussion (argument?) whereby I told him I would donate his to charity and the boys and I would wear ours. We reached a détente he will wear them, and we won’t post on social media (I wouldn’t have anyway). Later I was thinking would I have wanted our last conversation to be a spat about Christmas pajamas? Falls under life is too short!

Let’s make a pact to try and treat every day as a gift. Today is our holiday “present”. Let’s savor the simple joys of life, time with loved ones, time in lovely solitude, noticing the sun on the water, the smell of coffee in the morning, the hugs from our children, a snuggle from your cat. You get my drift. Or as my friend Diane would say, carpe diem!

“Yesterday is the past, tomorrow’s the future, but today is a gift, that is why it is called the present”.

“We are not living in eternity. We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand-and melting like a snowflake”-Sir Thomas Bacon

Our Practice – Stretching and Rejuvenating

Sometimes less is more (sound familiar?). Whether we are nurturing our body with a good stretch or nurturing our soul with a meditation (or a nap) or a little bit of both, taking a time out to soothe is important. As I have been struggling with a couple of injuries, I have been limiting my practice and trying to rest. It is hard for me to do this as I love my practice, but I have been noticing that it helps. It has been a tough week and I notice that a walking meditation outside, a little stretching and some additional sleep have been quite restorative.

Below is a link to one of my previously recorded videos – a 15-minute full body stretch. Sometimes exactly what is in order….

Nurturning with Food – Red Lentil Dal

I was thinking about vegetarian comfort food today. For me it is something always like a soup or stew with a little heat and spice. When I was in India, I took a cooking class, and the instructor also owned a spice shop. I brought back some traditional spices which are sadly mostly gone, I do think that Penzeys Spices are excellent, available online, and the company has an admirable company and social culture. For more on this visit This version of dal combines recipes that I had used before along with some ideas I picked up in India. In India, the preferred lentil is red, but any lentil would work fine – use what you have. I have noticed that the red gives a creamier texture.

Let me know how you like it.

See you on the mat!


Julia Anne

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