One of my daughters told me that a way of focusing mindfully is to pay attention to what comes to you from each of the senses. I began with my walk along the horse trail near our house, and the first sense that attracted me was the sense of smell. I recognized the fragrance of honeysuckle, and stopped to smell the blossoms on the fence; I had never noticed that there was a honeysuckle vine there, but the perfume clued me into it quickly. Further along, there was an orange tree close enough to the trail that I could stop and smell the tiny white blossoms and inhale one of my favorite scents in the world.
As I continued my walk, I noticed winged seeds on the ground, like the winged seed that played an important part in the movie Soul. In all the years of walking the horse trail, I have never seen those particular seeds. I wondered whether a new tree had been planted--although they were quite large and didn't look like the seeds from a sapling--or if the winds we've been experiencing recently had blown them from a greater distance.
My sense of taste has been delighted many mornings recently with an orange freshly picked from my tree when I have gone out to be sure that I inhale my own orange blossoms as long as they last. They have almost all dropped from the navel orange tree, but the Cara Cara is still covered with them, and the lemon tree has an abundance of almost pink blooms that are almost as sweet.
I discovered fluffy white cylinders of soft fibers that will become red cylindrical bottlebrush blooms later on, and I rubbed my fingers on the last of the yellow broom blooms that look like tiny koosh balls.
Finally, when I had finished my walk and opened the window to practice my horn, and I played a minuet to a recording of my granddaughter playing the piano part, the male house finch who shares nest duties with his wife, sat and sang with me while I was playing. It was a melodious accompaniment and I look forward to the peeping of tiny house finches when the eggs are hatched.
Becoming aware of how many of my senses are engaged just in the course of one day has filled my heart with thankfulness for how many blessings are poured out over me. May I be alert to their presence in my life!