At the risk of sounding like an allergy commercial, do you suffer from itchy, watery eyes, sneezing and a runny nose? Isn’t it a coincidence that in the time of year you most want to enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of the outdoors, you sometimes can’t? Thought you left the seasonal sniffles with your sandals and shorts? Not so fast. Spring isn’t the only season that can make you suffer—autumn can also be a red-eyed, runny-nosed minefield.
There is no question that fall is my favorite season. Nothing beats 70-degree afternoons, but I can often have trouble enjoying them because of my allergies. Surprisingly enough, a tiny thing like ragweed and pollen can stop up my nose, clog my ears, and make my eyes water, all the while making my favorite foods taste bland. All of the senses I use on a daily basis come under attack. You don’t realize how much of a wonderful impact the senses have on your life until they are hindered. This Issue is a tribute to the senses, discussing how to maximize the use of these God-given gifts we sometimes take for granted.
I’m sure most of you know the 5 senses are smell, touch, taste, sight and hearing. Unless something goes wrong with one of these basic senses, the ordinary person generally doesn’t give them a second thought. As you read this, I’d challenge you to slow down and reflect on some of the subtle sensory moments we don’t often take time to appreciate. For me, it’s the gentle touch of my six-month-old daughter’s hands on my face as I smooch her precious baby cheeks. The sounds of the Razorback fight song, as I root on my favorite team. The taste of my wife’s game-changing banana bread, fresh out of the oven, or even the smell of the crisp morning air as I take the kids to school with the top off the Jeep. If I just open my eyes, it’s easy to see all the blessings—big and small—around every turn.
I should give Mother Nature a thank you. Not that I enjoy having seasonal allergies, but at least now I realize how I’ve been taking my senses for granted. As soon as you get out of bed, your senses are hard at work, connecting you to your environment. This Issue will show how you can “strengthen your senses” and put them to work in the community around you, as you take in the sights, sounds and smells of your surroundings. Your town. Your life. Your magazine.