A very happy new year to everyoneI I find myself here in Oregon surrounded by my family today and the promise of a trip in the very near future to see my family back in Wisconsin - I'm in a very happy place.
It's time to talk One Little Word again - a tradition inspired by Ali Edwards that I've adopted for the last 5 years or so. She talks about her word for 2013 in this blog post, and you can also find out more about a class she teaches for a year's worth of inspiration and ideas about "one little word". My words of years past have included PATIENCE, PRESENT, ENJOY, and FORWARD. This past year my word was CONNECTION. I had some specific tasks in mind when I thought of the word - the top of my list was building up some more connection with my niece and goddaughter, Aubrie. We've been exchanging letters and I feel like this is a connection that I will continue to work on with her and my other nieces. In fact in just another week or so I will be flying back to Wisconsin to visit my newest niece, Corrina. I wasn't planning on going home this Christmas, but I just couldn't stand the thought of not holding that new baby until after she had turned one. Another big "connection" I've been working on this past year is through a project that I've worked on with mom. It had more momentum at the beginning of the year, but we've been working on it bit by bit throughout the year. This year my mom had one of those milestone birthdays and I wanted to start a scrapbook about her life. She's been helping by providing stories and pictures....it's been fun hearing about her past in her words and through her eyes. It's a project I will continue to work on. I've continued to focus on connections with my friends...making time for lunches out and time together when we can manage it. I'd like to keep working on that this year too and plan some sort of girl's getaway. And finally, I feel like it's been a year of making important connections with my immediate family - building new connections with this wonderful little family that we have put together here and maintaining connections I already have. I love that we are all able to work together to raise happy and healthy children.
I started thinking about my word for this year a month or two ago, and nothing was really jumping out at me. I've been thinking of many things that I feel like I should be working on....of course my weight is always the first thing that jumps to my mind, followed quickly by some financial goals that I've been working on. But those didn't really light a fire under me, and actually it made me feel like I was defeated before I even began. So after talking through it a bit with a friend, I decided to take this year's word in an entirely different direction.
I feel like I've spent a great deal of the last handful of years working on character traits or self-improvement projects....always working towards something. For the first time in a long time, I feel incredibly happy right here in this moment. I feel like so many things have fallen into place this past year and I couldn't be happier with the life I'm living right now. For that reason, this is the word that popped into my head....
....and I haven't been able to get it out of my head since. It's not to say that I won't continue to work on any of those self-improvement kinds of things, but I don't want those to be the things that set the tone for this year. First and foremost I want to CELEBRATE the person I have become, the things that I am blessed with, and the important people in my life. I've worked hard to get where I am and I want to spend this year (and many of the years that follow) CELEBRATING that.
I found this quote from a Dave Matthews song called "Two Step" that I kinda love...
"Celebrate we will because life is short but sweet for certain"
I think recent events have made me know and feel this even more, making this word for 2013 even more important and relevant to me right now.
I have some ideas in mind about how to keep my word in mind all year - I'll be starting the CELEBRATING in January while I'm at home, where I will CELEBRATE my new niece and meet her for the first time and where I will also be CELEBRATING my mom and dad's 40th wedding anniversary.
I look forward to CELEBRATING this coming year with all of you, and if you feel inspired to do so, I'd love to hear if you've chosen a word for 2013.
Happy New Year!