Well, today was a beautiful Southern California day. 70 degrees. After spending the morning moving furniture from storage into our spare rooms, I longed to walk outdoors, anywhere, but there were other plans in store for me which included Costco, the market, and…The Mall. While I did get in 4527 steps in so far today (not my more inspiring 7000 at the gym while on the treadmill) I did spend quality time with two out of three daughters and it set the tone for a lovely evening of togetherness making our traditional taco dinner with rice and beans and generally hanging out. In a few minutes we will begin our collages and then have a cozy night on the couch watching a movie.
These times are fleeting as our youngest leaves to go back to college tomorrow and our middle one off to college on Monday morning. We appreciate our time together and my legs are actually tired from all that Mall walking. The good news is that our new guest room is waiting for our oldest daughter and her boyfriend to come on down for a visit and stay is style and comfort.
The New Year brings change and challenges, but coming along for the ride are cozy, comfortable times and traditions. Home.
Simple New Year’s traditions are habitual for me. I relish creating goals, lists and most recently, collages-visual representations of my hopes for the new year ahead. I drag my family into this activity, but secretly I think they love the creative, artistic escape of sitting around the big kitchen table with piles of magazines torn apart in the search for the perfect picture or word. This mellow time of sharing, hunting together and putting our hopes and dreams for the future out on the table, stuck to small boards with white glue, is one of the few rare times we all sit engaged in a common activity that doesn’t require electricity. I often yearn for a technology-free day of time spent sharing an activity that requires personal interaction and the time we spend creating our New Year’s collages is a close as I get.
Before I can create my collage I have to consider what I want to visualize for the new year and that can be inspired by magazine images or ideas I’ve had floating around for a while. Setting goals is organized ambition and my inspiration after reading my daughter’s blog is to think of three goals and bring them to life with visual images that will inspire me during the year. I usually put my collage in a prominent place where I see it first thing in the morning and remind myself to be cognizant of my actions. So here goes, this year’s goals are:
1. To Write-I want to write blogs, journals, poems, stories, comments, and articles. I want to improve and grow as a writer. I will read, a lot, to be inspired, to learn, to be entertained, to relax and to escape. I think that reading and writing go hand in hand and surrounding myself in the literary world will help me create a place for myself in that world. It also is much nicer than watching mindless TV, although at times, mindless TV comes in handy too.
2. To Walk-I want to keep my commitment to walk an hour each day both as a great health goal, and as training for the Avon Breast Cancer Walk I will be participating in next September. Walking provides time to think, to listen to music or motivating walking CDs, or to watch a little of that mindless TV if I am on the treadmill at the gym. Walking connects me to the world, my neighborhood or places of nature and I feel better after walking thanks to increased endorphins.
3. To Move Forward-I am ready, more than ready, to move forward and away from 2008-2009 and towards a decade of increased awareness, a plan leading to goals, a life that is more in line with what is important to me: family, friends, health, and personal creativity. I am ready to accept help in getting started on my yellow brick road from any good fairy willing to help, and I do know that I have the power within me to make the changes, and start the walk down that road leading to my own version of Oz.
“The masters at the art of living make little distinction between their work and their play, their labor and their leisure, their minds and their bodies, their information, their recreation,their love and their religion. They hardly know which is which. They simply pursue their vision of excellence at whatever they do – leaving others to decide whether they are working or playing.”
With that in mind, here’s to a year of playing! Happy 2010!