Friday, January 2, 2009

A Year of Renewal

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I meant to have this post up yesterday, but my pc started giving me fits and I decided to shut it down for the rest of the day. The whole business left me in a foul mood; but, I had some knitting to finish up; two scarves-- ends to weave in, corners to mold, leaves to attach, etc. Today I laid the ribbed and flowered scarf out on the ironing board to block. I’ll do to garter stitch scarf tomorrow.
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Right now I want to get on to the main reason I wrote this post. My year of renewal, and I should add, my invitation to a shared accountability.
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I’m not one for making New Year’s Resolutions. But I do like to set certain goals for the coming year, as regard specific projects I’d like to accomplish. I admit though, to being a tad bit preoccupied the last two and a half years with my health concerns. Though it most likely should have, goal setting hasn’t exactly been high on my priorities.
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Frustration continues to linger even though I did spend some time earlier this year, coming to terms with the fact that— well, it’s probably better to say I finally realized I’d been mourning the life I’d known and enjoyed, and no longer lived. I miss my hiking and nature photography. I can no longer hover of frogs and geese and dragonflies. I am no longer that person who forgets about time as she hiked woodland trails; lugging a tripod over her shoulder, stepping off trail and exploring, shooting countless rolls film along the way. Getting on the ground to capture images of little horses and miniature goats is an ordeal; one that can leave me in recovery mode on the couch for days.
Many women today feel a sadness we cannot name. Though we accomplish much of what we set out to do, we sense that something is missing in our lives and—fruitlessly—search “out there” for the answer. What’s often wrong is that we are disconnected from an authentic sense of self. ~Emily Hancock
Yes. Many times throughout the course of any give month or year, our lives get broken. Life interrupts the best laid plans and dreams. And sometimes we merely deal with a situation and then return to the rut we didn't even know we were in. But last year I reluctantly accepted the certain things that I could not change. But what about what I can change? That's where I realized I simply needed to reinvent myself.
We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us. ~Joseph Campbell
[I found the above quotes while reading through
SIMPLE ABUNDANCE: A DAYBOOK of COMFORT and JOY,
by Sarah Ban Breathnach.]
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Fair enough! Setting goals helps us to see what might be waiting up ahead.
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Writing has always been a passion. But my health concerns limit and restrict my time. So, I have to make the best use of the time I am able to sit here. And I learned a few things about myself while I pressed on through a week-long writers conference and a month long write-a-thon. That’s where setting goals some can come into play.
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But before I venture into all the long and short term goals for what I want to accomplish, writing-wise, in 2009, I desperately need to focus first, on myself. My primary resolution, throughout the coming year, is to resurrect my Renewal Journal [focusing on my Intellectual, Spiritual, Physical, and Emotional well-being] and share the premise [activities as well] here in my Soul Echoes blog.
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Not that I haven’t already spent a great deal of time brainstorming current WIPS, etc. And it doesn't mean I'm completely putting off, or aside, anything relating to my literary projects. Far from it. I enjoyed building my blogs in 2008 and creating more of a presence on the web; along with meeting other writers in the process. I want to get back to my FWCs storyline, along with both the chronicles website and companion blog. I desperately want to get back to Diary of a Prisoner, which got a little face lift back in October. And I’m currently reading and working through the questions from Devon Ellington’s 2009 GDR.
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But I did spent a great deal of time during my former professional years, learning and coaching the setting of goals. I know the value of taking time to focus on oneself, so that friends, family, and those not yet known, will know the true self I purport at times to be. And it was during my participation in two of the organizational forums throughout the week of Muse2008, that I gave thought to re-establishing this proven practice.
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Some of the other things I intend to address in 2009, as part of a better me?
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Growing my own sprouts. I looked into hydroponics, but it all seems a little too much for me. I’m not able to physically handle that much or kind of work. Sprouting just looks more doable, and a better route. We’ll see how it goes the first time around.
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I found a few good videos on YouTube, which I'll share later. In the meantime, I’ve got some small jam/jelly canning jars from when I used to make honey butters. I think they'll be good to start out. And I’ve got some cheese cloth hiding somewhere in the studio; that gave up waiting for me to decide just how I'd thought I might use it.
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I’m also saving my glass peanut butter jars and plan to puncture a few drainage holes in the lids. I'll see how that works before I search out larger canning jars. Though I'll hit the thrift store before I buy retail. There's also space on the counter to set aside. But I already have lentils, chick peas, and kidney beans on deck and waiting.
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Dehydraton and Food Storage. I pulled my food dehydrator [along with the instruction/recipe book] from the pantry and determined to use it this coming year. Especially when the Vidalia’s are in season (my favorite aside from shallots), and I miss them when they’re not. And with the escalating prices of food, it's wise to consider what we can do to preserve. If and when we have the means.
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So, there are a couple of my “resolutions” for 2009. Next week I’ll go into more detail regarding my Renewal Journal. I’ll talk about how I modified the seventh habit [from Sharpen the Saw: Principles of Balanced Self-Renewal, see also: Habit 7 Sharpen the Saw], by Steven Covey, to fit how I lived at the time. There will also be an open invitation to join me and create that shared community of accountability, I hinted at earlier.
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I’ve already mapped out my activities for January. For week ending Sunday, 1-11, I’m going to focus on my Emotional Renewal. The week ending 1-18, I’ll focus on renewing Spirit. Week ending 1-25, I have something planned to help renew my Physical self. And for the week ending Saturday, 1-31, I’m going to nourish myself intellectually.
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That's it for now. I need to get back to my scarves. But, in keeping with my resolutions, I’m going to close with a recycling tip. When I send out my quarterly updates to my Pearl of Wisdom website, I usually include a tip for living a little more green. I’ve stated in the past that we’ve bought way too far into the convenience of things. We NEED to revert back to some of the simpler ways of life. The following tip will go out in the upcoming Winter Update, and comes via a memory of my grandmother Abbott’s kitchen, remembering all the jars she used to save, and the lids drawer.
Think Green:
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Start saving and recycling emptied glass jars, i.e. peanut butter or jelly jars, and use them instead of so many zip lock bags or disposable plastic storage containers. They are great for left over servings of soup, corn, peas, rice, etc. And that’s less plastic to buy, recycle, or end up in a land-fill.
Blessings

2 comments:

devon ellington said...

The scarves are beautiful.

Good for you with the renewal.

I'm one of those people who cannot throw out a glass jar. I keep them all and use them over and over and over again.

Chad Sayban said...

Thanks for stopping by my humble little blog. I hope you find it interesting and entertaining.

I'll be sure to stop by your blog. I hope you have success with your writing in 2009. Happy New Year!