Two words …

As I look at the year ahead, there are dark clouds looming. There are lots of things I cannot change at this moment, and yet there are things I can influence. So, that is where my focus has been for the past few weeks. What do I want and/or need and how will I prioritize these things in my life. It has taken years to be able to answer that question for myself. What do I want or need? Years ago, I began to ask myself three questions in my journal most mornings. The process of asking and then answering these questions has been life-giving. Continue reading “Two words …”

A look back…

The departure of 2017 has left behind a welcome calm. As I navigate the first weeks of the new year, I have spent quite a few hours tucked under my fuzzy blue blanket in my worn overstuffed chair. Usually, the week between the holidays is mine to reflect, evaluate, and plan. This year, those days were given over to people I adore, as we flew across the country to spend precious time with my Oregon family. So, I’ve redeemed slow Saturdays, a snowstorm, and quiet mornings catching up with my soul after a year of turmoil and transition. Continue reading “A look back…”

Managing energy…

When my kids were growing up, they played a lot of video games. My parents always ensured that the kids had the latest console, and they had games, lots of games. DDR caused the house to shift on its foundations late at night, Madden was constant background noise in our house, and the myriad of games that rolled across the screens in our home seemed endless. Of all the things, I miss about my kids growing up, this isn’t one. Continue reading “Managing energy…”

A Splash of Inspiration… November 4, 2017

A few years ago, we gave up television. I know exactly when it was. When Robin Williams died, I could not fathom watching the emotional and historical outpouring of communal sadness. I turned the tv off. We liked the sound of silence in our house. We talked more. We read more. We did not even miss the noise. We occasionally turn it on to watch something we’ve recorded or to watch a movie. But mostly, we just enjoy the silence.

One thing that I have filled in the corners of the silence with has been reading interesting blogs. I’ve been collecting a reading list of interesting people and perspectives from across the web. I’d like to introduce some of them to you! So, on Saturday mornings, I’m going to highlight one of my favorites for your enjoyment.

Shelly Miller’s blog is focused on Sabbath. She has created the Sabbath Society, a place where folks can encourage each other about the joys and challenges of arranging our lives around rest. She recently wrote a book, “Rhythms of Rest” which I am slowly savoring. I read a bit and then journal, read a bit and then ponder. It’s like sipping hot tea under a warm blanket on a gray morning.

Shelly Miller website

Sabbath Society– I’ve signed up for her weekly email. It is a nice reminder in the midst of the busyness of life to slow down and look up.

A favorite article – I also love her monthly printable calendar. I use it for a quick reference guide and take moments out of the day to remember what matters.

 

A matter of focus…

I’ve been fascinated by photography since I was a small girl. My grandma and grandpa Malone always had the newest technology which meant they had a super 8 camera when I was a child, were able to snap Polaroid pictures and wave them in the air, and they had every kind of “instant” camera you could imagine. Thin wide cameras with tall flash bars on the top. Thick cameras with color film and a twisting flashbulb, and eventually they had cameras with the flash built in. Even now, one of my favorite things is to look through the boxes and albums full of pictures. It’s like diving into a time machine. Continue reading “A matter of focus…”

What made life better in October?

My grandson- Teddy is the delight of my heart. His grin in the mornings make my heart sing and that wicked little look he gives me from across the room when he knows I will join him in mischief is delightful. This child is a wonder every day, but we recently took him to the apple farm where he picked his first apple, crawled around in the pumpkins, and enjoyed 2 new delicious treats. He destroyed an apple cider donut with two hands nom-nom-noming with gusto, but the look he gave me when I slipped a bit of maple floss (cotton candy) between his lips was priceless. I love watching the wonder of the world unfold from his perspective. It reminds me to slow down, pay attention, and enjoy the sweet bits. Continue reading “What made life better in October?”

Learning to play…

A few years ago, in the midst of a crushing time at work, a colleague said she was learning that the antidote to stress and fatigue was not just rest, but fun. She said she was scheduling lots of fun into her time off. She found that she was more able to handle the complexity and stress at work after having spent her time playing. Continue reading “Learning to play…”

Winter’s rest…

Most years I begin January with a neat set of goals. I like to have a clear vision and a plan for how to get there. I divide my year into nice quarters and check in on my goals near my birthday (March), at the beginning of summer (June), and at the beginning of the school year (September) to make sure I’m on track. I adapt and change goals as my life unfolds but having a sense of where I’m trying to go gives me a sense of clarity about what matters and what I want to move towards. Continue reading “Winter’s rest…”

The middle…

Faith
includes
noticing
the mess,
The emptiness
and discomfort
and letting it
be there
Until some
Light returns

– Ann Lamott

These words speak to a reality in my life these days. Life has shifted in new and uncomfortable ways. We are in the middle, deep in the dark place, before the turn. We left one certainty and have not yet reached the other side. In my favorite books, this is where the hero takes heart and stands firm in the face of insurmountable odds… and presses on to victory. Continue reading “The middle…”