Looking for the magic

this chair
Esther relaxing in the very cat-scratched chair

For years I have been trying to find a Christmas tree that had the same scent as the ones we had when I was a kid. The place where we’ve purchased our trees in the past, said it was Balsam that we were looking for, so we that’s the kind we’ve gotten. But they never smelled quite the same to me.

We didn’t go back to the old place this year. For no particular reason, neither Jack nor I wanted to, so we spent most of yesterday afternoon driving all over southern Vermont, and our area, looking for a tree. As it started to get dark, I suggested we wait until today to look but Jack insisted on getting one, so we headed west and just outside of Greenwich we spotted a larger trailer with Christmas lights and trees. As we got out to take a look, a young man in a hooded sweatshirt jumped out of the trailer. I couldn’t really see his face, but I made a snap judgement, “Here is a kid working for minimum wage, sitting in a freezing trailer selling someone else’s trees.” I didn’t expect much, and almost wanted to leave, but I spotted a nice looking tree and went back to the trailer to ask him about it, casually saying, “I am looking for a tree that smells good.”

He broke into a huge smile and said, “You probably want a Douglas Fir. They smell the best, at least I think so, and that’s the kind we ourselves get.” I asked him how to tell the difference and as he was explaining, the sweetest young woman (with more nose-rings than nose to put them in) jumped out of the trailer too and started talking about “their” business, saying proudly that this was their 3rd year.

This morning, I walked into our living room and that ancient, familiar scent of Christmas filled the air.

I am reminded on a regular basis that wisdom doesn’t necessarily come with a title, position or credentials. The magic and wonder of Spirit is ever-present (in and as everyone) and when I witness it, I am always delightfully surprised. I need only take off my own blinders of judgement, prejudice and limiting beliefs, to see, hear  (and smell!) It.

“...no particular clergyman, priest, minister, bishop, or any Truth teacher or practitioner, or anyone else, has more influence with God than you have. …The truth is that we are as near to God as our consciousness will bring us, and no outside arrangement will do that.” From The Ten Commandments by Emmet Fox

22 thoughts on “Looking for the magic”

  1. Wonderful little story this morning Mary….and you found the right tree when you didn’t even expect to. I guess the old saying is true…”never judge a book by it’s cover”!

  2. I am a hand reader, and I have often been shown how wrong a first impression can be. When I look at a hand, I see the soul, and every soul takes your breath away. I learn so much about myself doing this. How remarkable and unique we all are. And we all truly are here for a reason.

  3. When I first moved to this area (Seattle, WA) I felt at home which is odd since I was born and raised in Florida. When I am asked why I felt at home it is always the trees (lots of Douglas Fir trees) that immediately comes to mind. My Christmas is year-round thanks to these as well as other majestic evergreen. The magic continues to be ever present!

  4. Enjoy the scent, it’s a good one! Loved the quote, which reminded me of a quote”, no one is better than or less than , it is MY thinking that makes that so”! A way to separate, instead of join…….love, love, love, the “cat scratched” chair. And now….off to find some magic ….thank you! 🙂

  5. Thank you for the beautiful reminder of that beautiful scent. Thank you also for the reminder not to judge people by what we see. Thank you also for reminding me of the writings of Emmet Fox with that wonderful quote. I haven’t picked up his books for years.

  6. Love that scent! And your wonderful, as ever, way of telling us a good story with a much needed lesson.

  7. Dear Mary. Oh! That scent! It is captivating and magical. And so is your beautiful story this morning. Thank you for helping us remember to keep our hearts and minds open to those daily examples of Spirit at work.

  8. Another Christmas treasure from Mary! A ‘scratch ‘n sniff!’ – The quote is beautiful – what a thought to ponder, “we are as near to God as our consciousness will bring (or allow?) us”. That we may dare to step closer into the Divine this Christmas, with all of our senses, and a wide open heart.

  9. I loved your blog today Mary…and sooo true…as so many of us judge people by their looks and dont take the time to look inside their heart…there are alot of good people out there young and old that we judgementally overlook every day and we really shouldnt.

    Your tree sounds lovely and I can only imagine how wonderful it smells…

  10. I’m with Julie….judging people by their looks is something that I confess I’ve done and likely still do to some extent. I was raised during a time when a particular culture was not allowed into our city’s private clubs; hard to believe now. Right now, I’m reading Robt. Caro’s series on Lyndon Johnson (tdoes not mean that I was or am an admirer of LBJ). His description of how people of colour were so discriminated against by the majority of politicians, particularly from the south, until the last half century of my time. Hard to believe, too. Last week, my car battery died and a CAA (Can.AutoAssoc) mechanic came to my rescue with his battery truck. A small, hard-bitten man jumped down from the truck reeking of cigarette smoke and yet, in the space of time that I spent with him (allergic as I am to cigarette smoke), I found a connection with him through his helpfulness and his humanness. We shared time together which otherwise might never have happened and it reminded me again that I live a secluded and sometimes, limited life in who I come into contact with.
    SandyP in Canada

  11. Everyone you meet has a story. Everyone you meet is living a life, hard or easy, just like you and me. I try to keep that uppermost in my mind when I feel my ‘judging self’ coming out. It stops me cold. And by taking a different fork in my road of thinking, I make more meaningful connections than I ever thought possible.

    Great post, Mary. We can always count on you!

  12. I love the quote Mary. I so believe it. Despite what my Father used to say.(the Episcopalian Minister)…”I am God.” He thought that was funny but I never did.
    Happy Holidays, Cindy

  13. Christmas trees are my favorite things. The wonderful scent, the lights, and especially ornaments that carry so many memories. Trimming the tree is folk art to me, a sand painting meticuloulsy arranged but not destined to be permanent. I love the tree every year and sincerely believe each one is the best most beautiful tree we’ve ever had.

  14. Loved your post this morning Mary. When I came to the part about you walking into your living room and the ancient familiar scent of Christmas filled the air, I started to cry. I think a part of me is searching for that old and familiar part of years gone by and when I feel it, it often catches me off guard.
    I think your story of finding this special tree, along with your reminder about judging others too quickly, tells me your Christmas has already begun and this year it will be extra special. Love and hugs, Marian

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