Arranging the Pieces.

Arrange whatever pieces come your way.
— Virginia Woolf

Diving into the steamy pool as the clock hits 6am means only one thing- my writing time (morning pages) and meditation have been shifted even earlier, to an ungodly hour that starts with a 4. But I've been consistently doing both of these long enough in the morning to understand their inherent value, and skipping any one of the two, or even both (gasp!) is unthinkable. I'm thankful I've developed them into my morning routine that they are now as habitual as brushing my teeth and lotioning up after a shower.

I'm listening, a lot. Propped up with my pillow behind my back, legs crossed, with sleepy eyes and the covers shrouding my open palms, I'll just breathe. In. Out. In. Out. I find it interesting how ideas will just drop into me, stay for awhile. And I'll notice them, tuck them away, and focus again on my breath. In. Out. In. Out.

From a bird's eye view of the past few months, I am fascinated how people, situations, and opportunities have emerged in the most exciting and creative of ways. Lots of pieces, different shapes and colors and textures, and here I am taking whatever it is that shows up in my life, and arranging it in such a way that best fulfills my dharma in this big and beautiful world.

It would be just as easy to take those same pieces and say, "It's impossible," or "I can't do that," or blame the economy, other people, or come up with a million different excuses to keep myself from fulfilling my destiny. But perhaps it's the inner artist in me that sees these independent pieces and wants to fit them together in a creative and meaningful way- one that will ultimately be of service to those around me.

This same approach applies in the kitchen. Yesterday I looked at the kabocha squash resting on the counter, noticed the kale in the fridge staring me straight in the eyes, the $3 organic red bell pepper begging me not to go to waste, and the forbidden black rice greeting me as I opened my top cupboard door. So I took those pieces and arranged them together in one of the most delicious meals.

 Roasted kabocha squash stuffed with forbidden black rice, wild rice, kale, onions, red bell peppers and shiitake mushrooms.

Roasted kabocha squash stuffed with forbidden black rice, wild rice, kale, onions, red bell peppers and shiitake mushrooms.

How are you arranging the pieces in your life?