Since the start of the whole COVID-19 lockdown, I have had time to go back to capture those small life moments that I have been missing. Not looking forward to something that might happen in the future, I am on a Stoic path of discovery as well as re-discovery. Looking to some of my many talents that have went dormant due to becoming an adult. (kids, don’t buy into the whole adult thing….its a trap)
Here is a list of a couple of how I have captured those small life moments that I have found useful. I have been doing these with the extra time that has been gifted to me. I am constantly working on my ability to enjoy what is in front of me at the present and not looking forward to the future.
So, our house is in a community that has walking trails that meander through the complex. I having a home whereas the walking path goes right behind my house. This give me the perfect opportunity to greet all of the dog-walkers and folks that are out for their morning or evening stroll. This has been such a great way to get to know our neighbors. We get to catch up on the latest news in the community.
I know that it might sound a little crazy but I have also rediscovered the beauty of morning and evening. In the morning, I will sit out on the deck with my crafted coffee (more on that later) and greet the sun as it comes up above the tree-line. In the evening, I am also outside to send my regards to the sun for a job well done.
Ok, I will be the first one to admit that my exercise regimen has been lacking over the course of a couple of years. Nothing to do with a pandemic but more with having minutiae get into the way and not spending time in that realm of my life. As I mentioned in the earlier bullet, I have been enjoying talking with all of my neighbors as they have been walking by.
I have also become an active participant of walking by my other neighbors home. Giving them the friendly hand wave or to engage into light conversation. Let’s just chalk this up to exercise but secretly, I think that it has to do more with me wanting to socialize with folks. I have actually enjoyed these daily walks to see nature and to pay more attention to the life and activities
Small Life Moments with Coffee
I have always enjoyed coffee since I was young but now I have the time to dedicate to what the perfect cup of coffee consists of and how to produce and enjoy. The method that I have found to give me the best cup of coffee is the pour-over. While the concept is very simple, pour hot water over coffee grounds there is a science to get this correct. How much coffee do you use and how fine is the grind that is used with the coffee bean?
Another consideration is the temperature of the water that you are using to pour over the coffee. While the brand/type of coffee bean can be one thought, I have taken glee into adjusting the grind and water temperature to low-cost beans to make a delicious cup of java that rivals some of the more expensive beans.
This does result in a longer, more drawn out process than normal. Putting a K-cup into the Keurig and hitting the go button is definitely easier. This life moment does make for a more custom, enjoyable coffee than the machine could ever make for you. When you do have extra time, it becomes less of an issue and more of a constant experiment to see how close you can come to perfection.
Small Life Moments with Cooking
My wife and I go into spurts of cooking at home and getting food outside the house; either being restaurants or fast food. Having more time has let us cook more difficult recipes than we would normally prepare. When possible, we always strive to use whole food to make the meal. Dicing the whole potato and using the fresh herbs and spices from the produce section. Nothing frozen if it can be helped. Purchased from the farmers market when able. Using these items instead of packages that have already been pre-processed makes for a better meal.
This has let us slow down and really enjoy the process of making dinner. It has usually been to make food to consume and that is it. Now it is enjoying the process of making the meal that we will be having. A small life moment that I like to do is play the local music of a dish that I am preparing. Mariachi music for pork carnitas, Caribbean for grilled fish and so forth. It seems to add a festive element to the cooking process. In a subtle way, it takes me back to places that I have visited and have fond memories of. After the meal, the music will usually stay on that genre until it is time to head off to bed.
These are a few areas of concentration lately. What is my future list of small life moments you may ask? Here are a few things that I am looking to start.
- Strength Training
- Writing more
- Learning Spanish