A mantra for the holiday season

Well, here we are, it’s officially the holidays. This is the first season that Morgane is really tuned in to what’s going on – yesterday we were walking through Target and she was stopping every 5 steps to announce another addition to her Christmas list for Santa. While I love to see the joy she finds in this concept of Santa bringing her presents on her list, I’m wondering how to shift the focus towards the holiday experience, vs. the material goods. Today, Thanksgiving, is a good place to start, with the concept of giving thanks – I’m going to make it my mantra for the holiday season. A nice way to launch full force into it, when the quest for material goods can often squelch the joy of the season. So we are spending time talking about what it means to be grateful for everything we have, and to take time to appreciate our blessings. Yeah, it sounds so lofty/corny, but really, how often do we think this way? And now more than ever is the time to do so. We’re so culturally conditioned to orient ourselves towards the material (perhaps that’s why we’re surrounded by such a sense of panic, with the current financial situation). My yoga practice and studies have made me acutely aware of this over the years. It doesn’t mean that I don’t like buying things (Lord no), but I definitely place a higher value on the experiences I share with others and the world around me. This sense of connection is what brings me the most happiness.

Here’s what’s on my short list today:
Food: someone asked me the other day if I was cooking for Thanksgiving, and I realized that I am almost always cooking. I’d feel pretty lost if my life wasn’t revolving around food, and I love nurturing myself and my family through my efforts in the kitchen. But today is a special day, not only with regards to the menu, but also to be thankful that I enjoy the luxury of food, being able to choose what I eat and feed my family, and not having to worry about where the next meal is coming from. 
Family: pictured here are the two people that make my heart come close to bursting. ‘Nuf said.
Experience: my life is full and rich with experience. Yeah, I get impatient and annoyed and all that other stuff, but overall, I enjoy almost every thing I am doing, from getting my daily latte to dropping off the recycling to the more dramatic, like riding off under the Big Sky on Flash…I find meaning it it all and to me that is a true gift. It hasn’t always been this way, it’s taken me a long time to get here. So I am grateful to whatever higher power made that happen.
Yoga: couldn’t leave this off the list. Quite simply, it’s caused so many things in my life to come together. I am also grateful to everyone that has trusted me enough to allow me to teach them yoga, and share myself with them in this way.
Join me in resolving to take the mantra of thankfulness beyond this one day. Namaste, and Happy Thanksgiving.