Wednesday, January 1, 2014

A New Year

The New Year; a blank page in a new journal, a car with no mileage, a ball of soft, gray clay waiting to find its form. Despite vowing not to make resolutions, I am drawn to beginnings, to starting over, to new shoes and new haircuts that make me feel as though part of my old self is shed and a new part has begun. I love this quote by G.K. Chesterton, 

"The object of a New Year is not that we should have a new year. It is that we should have a new soul and a new nose; new feet, a new backbone,  new ears and new eyes. Unless a particular man made New Year's resolutions, he would make no resolutions. Unless a man starts afresh about things, he will certainly do nothing effective."

My theme word that I chose last year to guide my 2013 journey was quality, as I felt I wanted to enhance the quality of life's moments, both the grande and the mundane, and to make choices and decisions based less on the sake of convenience and more on the quality of the final product. I often strayed from this word when the moments I could have spent cuddling with the boys was wasted reading hollywood gossip on the internet or the choice to purchase a cheap pair of sneakers resulted in aching arches and ultimately having invest in a higher quality shoe to support my cracking knees. However more often than not, I did allow my theme word to enhance the richness of my life. I attempted more presence in the moments with my family, and put down whatever I was doing and paid attention when the boys were telling me stories. I saved money to purchase items of greater quality rather than spending less on items that would ultimately break or not be exactly what I wanted. Quality will be a theme I hope to continue to carry with me and work at growing in each passing year. 

So with great thought, I chose my word of 2014. 
Still (defined in the Webster dictionary) is lacking motion or activity, free from noise or turbulence. For me the irony spoke when I recently read of photography and its unique ability to make time still. And as the many amazing authors and poets I revere speak to stillness and quieting the mind as the only path to happiness. Stillness allows the ego to stop it's incessant chatter and the light of our true selves emerge. This may begin for me with small tasks such as stopping to take a deep breath in the stillness of a moment or becoming still prior to yelling at the kids or saying something to Brian I might regret later. In animal speak, stillness is the rabbit's greatest defense to threat. When it senses it is in danger, whether to a circling hawk or an early morning jogger, it freezes, it becomes still. Skeptics who think animal speak is for new age hippies can read the magnitude of research about meditation on the health and wellness of the brain. Stillness in meditation actually improves brain functioning from everything to memory loss to sharper and clearer focus. I don't know many who could not benefit a bit from a healthier brain and a quieter mind. There is great power in stillness. 


What will be your word for 2014? 

Wishing my friends and family a happy, healthy and peaceful New Year.

Love & Light,


A few holiday photos.

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