The semi-wild, abundant island garden in my back yard is full of tropical treasures. This is the season of sea grapes in The Bahamas. These beauties are growing on a big shady tree just behind the house and have a subtly sweet, somewhat tart taste when they turn a ripe purple. The big sea grape leaves are about the size of dinner plates, and in fact, a wonderful guide out at The Garden of The Groves once told a story about how she remembered her family in the small charming “out islands” of The Bahamas using these sturdy leaves as the perfect natural disposable plates for outdoor dining! It’s so easy to take the ever-green, infinitely lush landscape here for granted, and so exhilarating to stop and really admire it with gratitude. A favorite author of mine, Terry Hershey, is a great advocate of slowing down and embracing the Sacred Present. His funny stories and gentle reminders to pay attention to the moments that make us feel most alive are something I look forward to in his weekly Sabbath Moments newsletters, and now in a new blog that he’s just started — can’t wait to read more of his musings and witty wisdom more often! (www.terryhershey.com) I am also enjoying a copy of his latest book, The Power of Pause. It’s so good to stop and savor the sea grapes of life … the sweet and the unsweet … the ripe and the not-yet-ripe beauty all around us and within us.