Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Fall Fetish

Something about this time of year brings about some serious introspection for me. The harvest, the abundance of fruit right in my own backyard, the going back to school, the colors, the change of season....I don't know what it is, but I like it. Fall is the season I'd pick if I had to pick a season. So here are a couple lessons I learned today from picking blackberries:
  • Enjoy the right here and right now.

I find myself telling the girls to not eat anymore berries, because then we won't have enough for the cobbler I want to make. Am I for real? A blackberry is at its best when it's fresh-picked, ripe, and warm off the vine. So juicy and delicious, no cobbler can compete. Once I forget about the cobbler and allow myself to enjoy the berries as we pick, I have no more self control than my girls. When we're through my hands and mouth are just as covered in remnants of purple delight as my 2-year-old's. I have my girls to thank for teaching me to stop and enjoy the moment, instead of planning to enjoy it later.

  • Sometimes you have to deal with thorns to get to the GOOD stuff.

Blackberries have a pretty good defense mechanism set up to, you know, protect them from bears and little girls. The best, biggest, ripest berries are always hidden in the thorns. You better have a few scrapes after you're done picking, or you can be sure you missed out on the really GOOD stuff.

  • Taking a break to pick blackberries when my house is a disaster and my baby is crying is GOOD for me, maybe even necessary.

This really requires no explanation other than by the time I was finished, the baby had cried herself to sleep, thereby saving my sanity for maybe 1/2 hour.

  • Life is GOOD, and I am blessed, maybe even spoiled.

Those berries grow with absolutely no work on my part. I get to enjoy their GOODness without having to do anything but walk a few yards and pick away. I have lots of things in my life that I probably don't deserve, definitely haven't "earned," and probably don't appreciate as much as I should.

  • Hard work deserves a reward.

I told the girls they couldn't eat any berries until my bowl was filled. Well, they didn't exactly keep their side of that bargain 100%, but they did help me fill my bowl up as best as little girls can, two or three berries at a time. So they definitely deserved some reward of their own for all their "hard" work. And since blackberries are dangerous creatures they needed some help from someone with longer arms. I can be a nice mom. Sometimes. When I stop and actually allow myself to be nice in the moment instead of planning to be nice later.

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