‘Enough is as good as a feast’

I have watched Disney’s Mary Poppins numerous times. As a child I stomped around the living room demanding ‘votes for women,’ imagined chortling myself up to a tea party on the ceiling, hopped in and out of chalk drawings and swelled with the final notes of “Let’s go Fly a Kite.” It is a completely enchanting film from start to finish. Recently, I shared Mary Poppins with The Little Helping for the first time. I thought I knew each line by heart but that evening, nestled quietly amidst the familiar scenes, I caught a tiny nugget of advice that has since become my personal mantra.

The children have only just met Mary Poppins when she teaches them how to turn the chore of picking up their toys into a game all on its own. With snaps of their little fingers the room springs to life and essentially tidies itself. The loathsome task becomes so fun that little Michael Banks asks if they might do it again immediately. His request is quickly dismissed. “Enough is as good as a feast,” Mary Poppins chides as she bundles the children out the door.

Excess is all around. These final days before Christmas are particularly overflowing with the things we must have, must give, must eat and it’s all okay because it only happens once a year. Indulging in the chaos of the season is fun but if, or rather when, the fun stops life can unravel quickly.

In 2014, I am going to continue to remind myself that enough is absolutely as good as a feast and potentially even better. I can think of many ways to apply Mary Poppin’s blunt wisdom to my wellness journey.

I’ll begin with this short list:

  • The first few bites are always the tastiest.
  • Leaving some for later means enjoying a delicious meal or sweet treat two or more times rather than only once.
  • Finding a little time everyday to exercise is better than “killing it” infrequently.
  • Owning a few well-loved and useful items beats a house full of flashy junk.
  • Doing one thing well trumps the frantic mass production of half-baked ideas.
  • Hundreds of social media contacts will never replace a dozen great friends.

This Christmas season, and into the new year, may you live a life of “enough” — enough food to nourish you, enough shelter to warm you, enough peace to comfort you and enough love fill in all the empty spaces.

Merry Christmas. Be blessed one and all.

More in Life

Julia Turner and her father, Ed, toast as they try out a flight of beer and cider at Lake Stevens Brewing Co. when it opened last year. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Beer of the Week: Lake Stevens Brewing Co.’s Sour Imperial

The beer has a depth and a complex flavor profile that goes beyond just another barrel-aged stout.

Now is the perfect time to design the garden of your dreams

Find inspiration in gardening magazines, on the internet, in your neighborhood and at nurseries.

Teen idol David Cassidy remains in Florida hospital

The former pop star is dealing with multiple organ failure.

Around Thanksgiving, gardeners give thanks for the garden

What are they most thankful for? The pleasure they receive from spending time in their yards.

Great Plant Pick: Thuja occidentalis ‘Degroot’s Spire’

What: An exceptional selection of the eastern arborvitae, Thuja occidentalis “Degroot’s Spire”… Continue reading

The pros’ snow: Lake Tahoe a big draw for skiers of all stripes

North Lake Tahoe is home to one of the largest concentrations of ski resorts in North America.

How birds stay alive in winter and what you can do to help

When the weather turns chilly, columnist Sharon Wootton’s thoughts turn to birds coping with cold.

Our annual list of holiday events in Snohomish County and beyond

LIGHTS The Lights of Christmas: Open 5 to 10 p.m. Nov. 30-Dec.… Continue reading

How to maintain your life’s balance amid change

Columnist Paul Schoenfeld shares some techniques for working toward a sense of stability.

Most Read