By Maria Koropecky, Homespunspa owner
I’m lucky enough to live down the street from a lovely park that I don’t visit nearly often enough. Centennial Park is filled with grand trees and all kinds of plant life. There’s also a creek that trickles along the western perimeter. I like to walk along the path and take it all in step by step. Over the years, I’ve seen eagles and woodpeckers and even an iguana but have yet to see the notorious owls that live there too. I love this photo I took on one of my walks because it reminds me of the height of the trees in my neck of the woods.
Each time I go, my mood brightens and I feel more relaxed. Going to the park just perks me up.
If you have a chance before winter comes, take a walk in the park and enjoy the show.
Let your senses guide you.
- Sight — Obviously, the colours during this time of year are brilliant. Mother nature’s autumnal palette includes: apricot, cherry, chestnut, chocolate, cinnamon, honey, peach, pea green, plum, saffron and wine. (Yes, I picked these foodie colours on purpose because they make great home spa ingredients :>). Yesterday, I noticed a tree whose bark had an aubergine hue and the emerald moss on top just made it pop.
- Hearing — As you walk along the forest path, take a moment and listen to what’s going on around you. I like to hear the crunch of the leaves under my feet or the squishy sound my shoes make as I step through mud. Of course the chirping and fluttering birds also add to the ambiance. Sometimes I just stop and listen to wind rustling through the trees or the water flowing downstream. I’ve also heard the trees creaking as if they’re talking to each other. The whole effect is quiet and noisy at the same time.
- Taste — I had to think about this one for a second but then it occurred to me — yes, there is a way to taste your way through the forest if you’re so inclined — but unless you know what you’re doing, I wouldn’t recommend it. Still you can find and collect all kinds of treats like nuts, herbs, flowers, berries, mushrooms, and rainwater. And they all happen to be excellent home spa ingredients, too.
- Smell — This one is easy. Walking into a forest, particularly after a rainfall, is aromatherapy at its finest. Just close your eyes and breathe it in. The piny-scented fresh air will do wonders for your spirit.
- Touch — I usually keep my hands in my pockets as I walk in the woods because I don’t want to disturb the wildlife. Every now and then, though, I just have to reach out and put my hand on a tree. The texture of the bark just speaks to me. Maybe next time I’ll go all out and give the tree a big hug too.