Sunday, January 04, 2015

Published 10:37 PM by with 2 comments

In(tentional) 2015

One of my favorite pictures in my folk's home, that my mom made. She's such an inspiration to me as an artist; their home is gorgeous, and has artwork everywhere! I love thinking about choosing joy in the new year. It's also a reminder that I have choices in what I hope to see in 2015. I ask myself the important question: "What does {THE DEEPEST PLACE} of my soul desire, need, and wish for?"

Beautiful words from Rachel.

For the past four years, I've been using Susannah Conway's lovely free workbook called "Unravelling the Year Ahead" to think through the past year and set intentions for the next year. I love that she calls them "intentions", because the term "goals" feels too solid, and it would be disappointing if I didn't completely accomplish them! With an intention, I can adapt it, do just part of it, or make it suit my needs and still feel like I've succeeded. Yeah, goals and intentions are pretty much the same thing, but it's the thought behind each of them that makes my mind feel like they're different ;-)

Here are a few of the intentions I've set for 2015:

~ Edit my novel, "The Naming of Fio Re", and have a few folks read it and give feedback. 

~ Meditate on Scripture every day, at least one verse. Learn more about Scripture meditation, too.

~ Deliberately make time to be face to face with friends and build relationships.

~ Go outside every single day. Every day. No exceptions. Even if it's just for a five minute walk or to sit in my yard on the grass. 365 Days of Nature, commence! More on that below.

~ Plan a creative retreat again similar to the one my lovely friend Heather and I had this December. Maybe it could be an entire weekend instead of one day? Maybe we could invite more friends? Do more art together? Cook meals? There are so many possibilities! 

~ Finish memorizing Romans 8. I got super close to accomplishing this last year, but it just didn't happen. Now of course it's only vaguely in my memory. I want to have the entire chapter down!

~ Record a CD of my favorite guitar pieces that I've learned in the last twenty years. Sheesh... I am OLD. I have been playing guitar for a freakin' long time!!! I might as well sum it up with some kind of recording after all these years. That will require practicing. If there were only a few extra hours each day...

~ Read all the books in my house that I have not yet read. There are actually a decent number of books that fall under this category. I may or may not make an exception for the Dostoevsky novel that even Chris hasn't been able to finish... *sigh*. This past year I tried to read one book a week, and considering that I forgot to log any of the books I read in November or December on my book list page here on the blog, I'm fairly certain that I hit that goal! Yay!

~ Fresh flowers every week. My mood and attitude are so brightened when flowers are present in my home! I don't need to buy new flowers every week; they last about two weeks if I take care of them, and it would be just five dollars or so from my grocery budget every other week. How about yes :-)

~ Go back to Lambert's Restaurant, the home of the "throwed rolls"! I was there during my senior year of college: it was AWESOME. Gotta go again, even though it's a bit of a road trip!

~ Read aloud with Chris more. We're mired in the weirdness of the "Arabian Nights" right now. It seriously seems never-ending. We may end up just reading it separately so that we can finish it and move on to something a little more manageable!

~ Give another shot to writing down 1,000 gifts. I got really close, over the last two years (even though you're supposed to write down a thousand gratitudes in only one year, not two), but made it to about eight hundred and faded out. It's always worth another try! This time I'm tracking it on my smartphone. I hate putting important things in my phone, which is why I still have a paper notebook and calendar, but my phone is almost always on hand to quickly jot something down, so hopefully this method will help keep me more on track. I love that Ann Voskamp has the "Joy Dares" available for free download in each month so that you have a bit of direction when looking for blessings in your everyday life!

~ Send more postcards. I love letters, but with the busyness of life, sending a postcard is going to be more doable than sending a full-blown letter, I'm thinking. Plus, postcards are art-in-the-mail! Win!

~ Get a perfume I really like. I've had only two perfumes, both of which I liked, but haven't yet found a perfume that I truly LOVE. I'm not gonna push this one too much; perfume is expensive! If it happens miraculously, it happens. If not, hey, I can wait.

~ Explore HONOR as my One Word. "The greatest way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be." - Socrates

~ Watch the entire series of "Avatar: the Last Airbender". OH NO NOW EVERYONE KNOWS HOW MUCH OF A NERD I AM. One of my best friends just introduced it to me last week (read: basically held me down and forced me to watch the opening episode because they knew I'd like it even though I was all "noooo I don't want to watch anything new") and I was instantly hooked. It's just the right kind of show for a girl who has watched almost all of the Naruto Shippuden... um, I mean, *cough cough* I totally have never watched anime before. 

I can't wait to see what growth and change this year will bring for Harmony. She is so verbal for a two and a half year old. The other day she and I ran errands all morning, so I made sure that our last stop was at a coffee shop where we could share a fruit smoothie. We sat at a table together, sipping the smoothie, people-watching and talking about the decor of the shop and noticing what folks were eating and discussing the day. That was the first time I realized, "hey, my daughter and I can have conversations now! There's finally someone in our family who talks just as much as me!" and I had a good laugh. My daughter is awesome.

Yes, I truly do want to go outside every day. So far, for the first four days of this new year, I've succeeded in getting outdoors for a few minutes, despite a sick toddler, a messy house, a busy schedule, and frigid weather (with snow today). Each time I made myself get my act together enough to go out, I was always grateful that I had! Being in nature, even on our little dead-end street or sitting in our yard, is grounding, refreshing, clarifying, relaxing, calming, energizing, and so many more things for my physical and mental health. I come back inside renewed and ready to face anything. There must be magic in a breath of fresh air ;-) I'm recording this journey on Instagram with a picture every day under the tag #365daysofnature.

I can tell that even though there will be more days where it will be difficult to get myself out the door, it will be for the best. Many thanks to my sweet husband and sister who have either sat with Harmony or just kept an ear out for her while she slept so that I could escape for a little while! I am SO very blessed to have my supportive family around me. 

Love these daily prompts from Write Alm!

I definitely want to continue to write often, here on the blog, in my personal journal, in postcards and the occasional letter to friends and family, and on Instagram. I've very much enjoyed the little snippets of life I can share on Instagram to accompany a picture, and even more have loved seeing others' lives through their own lens on IG too!

Facebook was de-activated yesterday, as planned. It feels weird not to check it, but I am already appreciating the social media silence that it is allowing. Yes, I'm still part of social media here and on Instagram, but it feels more manageable, if that makes any sense. 

The picture above was taken after I was awake for almost forty-eight hours straight. On new year's eve, half an hour before midnight, Harmony suddenly and violently came down with the stomach flu while we were at my folk's home. She had been sleeping in their guest bedroom as we got ready to celebrate the new year's arrival. Instead of ringing in 2015, we spent the rest of the night caring for her, with barely any sleep. When we finally got her home the next day, I fuzzily remembered that one of my intentions was to get outside every day, so Chris sat with her for a few minutes while I laid in the grass of our front yard, which was all I had the energy to do. It was a good reminder that "the best laid plans of mice and men..."

If all my intentions are not realized in 2015, IT WILL BE FINE. I will be okay. Nobody/nothing will explode, my dreams won't be shattered. Sometimes we have hard times; sometimes our lives are rocked to the core by terrible news. With that in mind, I'm trying to hold my plans loosely, knowing that only God sees the future. I hope that no matter what the coming days hold I will be able to trust in His plans for me even if it means that mine go out the window. My favorite Bible verse from year to year continues to be from Micah 6:8: "He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?" That is what I truly want to be the desire of the deepest place in my heart!

So here we go, 2015! What do YOU wish that 2015 might hold for you? Let me know in the comments! Did you choose a Word? Do you have goals, or intentions?

{Writing prompt THE DEEPEST PLACE from Write Alm's January prompts}



Jennifer - The Deliberate Mom said...

Oh my goodness, this post just filled me with joy and inspiration! You have so many lovely intentions for 2015! How exciting to be standing at the beginning of the year with you and to envision the results.

Thanks for sharing that free workbook link. I have to check that out. I love workbooks, printables, etc.

Thanks for sharing (and for linking up to the #SHINEbloghop).

Wishing you a lovely day.

Lyssa said...

Thank you, @Jennifer! I am hopeful that many of these intentions will be fulfilled over the course of the year!