I was out and about on my contemplative walk this morning with my faithful canine companion, Libby. It’s still rather chilly here in Seattle, but the sun was peaking it’s way through the clouds and there was a quiet calm and stillness over the lake. My brain tends to run more than a mile a minute as I sought to quiet my soul and just enjoy walking and noticing. I’ve noticed over the years that as I walk, my mind begins to settle and slow down as I intentionally look about, take slow deep breaths and simply enjoy being outdoors. Something darted across the edge of my left eye as I looked out over the lake and I wondered, “Was that a hummingbird?” I tabled that thought as I couldn’t see it again and continued walking. My eye was caught again a little ways further along by what I now genuinely saw as a small hummingbird, madly flapping its wings and zipping here and there about a small tree at the edge of the lake. I stopped, watched, observed and wondered, “What might this joyful, flying, darting about, small hummingbird have to say to me today?” I tend to do this with animals that I spot out and about in nature. Upon returning home I google searched and discovered quite a list of the possible symbolism of hummingbirds. Here they are: symbolic of resurrection, a creature that opens the heart, symbol of peace, love and happiness, timeless joy and enjoying the nectar of life, beauty, and a symbol for accomplishing the impossible. Aha! One of my hearts longings is to daily practice being present to whatever beauty, life and love there is in my life. The hummingbird reminded me of this today. Also, I have what I consider to be 2 impossibly wild dreams: to live in Paris (offering soul retreats for women) and to write/publish some kind of novel/book. The novel/book thingy is kind of vague and floats about in files that I have with various people/places and things I’ve written about or noticed. Some of the writing is memoirish in style, along with thoughts around my grandparents, life experiences, spiritual practices and travel. It’s rather a large list and is in need of some kind of focus, of which I’m not completely sure of as yet. The other dream, to live in Paris, has been stirring in my soul for the past number of years. I was encouraged by the hummingbird today to continue to dream, to live into the present life circumstances that surround me and to fill my heart yet again with peace, joy and love.