The Gift Of Presence

 In chaturanga, Fort Collins

By Cheryl Hansen


Before I learned how to do a proper downward dog… before I mastered my 30-second plank… before I realized all a chaturanga entailed… I was taught the importance of being present on my mat.


To be clear—my downward dog is a work in progress and I’m not sure anyone would say I’ve mastered anything to do with a plank of any kind. And my chaturanga is—well, it’s coming along. But it’s fair to say I have learned without a doubt the importance of being present—not only on my mat, but in life in general.


I just have trouble actually doing it.


The fact that my kids are heading back to school in a little over a week (ONE week?!?!) signifies the END of SUMMER (noooooooo!). And I’m guessing I’m not alone when I say that all of my grand plans for summer have not come to fruition. We’ve taken the vacations and spent hours in the pool—but my paddleboard is downright dusty and I’ve yet to make a never-before-tasted summer salad I dreamt of in March.


If YogaPod has taught me anything, however, it’s to let go of June… and July… and a clean garage in August. And I must push back those Fall Planners in my head who yearn to start shopping for Halloween costumes. Because today, I’m making oatmeal-yogurt-chocolate-chip muffins with my kids. I’m also packing for two days at the lake—camping, hiking, kayaking, and everything that goes with that—but for the next 45 minutes—I’m making muffins. And my kids are excited about MAKING MUFFINS. So instead of apologizing to them and telling them that Mommy just needs to GET-IT-DONE this time, I’m going to embrace the moment—and whatever mess that may ensue—and make beautiful friggin’ muffins with my kids.


Here’s the recipe (it’s actually healthy, low sugar and relatively guilt-free… though guilt is SO NOT living in the present, is it?):


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