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I wrote how I haven't quite felt ready to dive into making goals and intentions for this year and how I think that's okay. I think it's okay to recognize that while winter is a beautiful season for drawing inward and reflection, it's a harder time to crank out some big dreams.
Though, if I am being quite honest, due to some comparing my story to others, I was beginning to wonder if it was in fact okay. I wondered if maybe my lack of intention setting was due to laziness or poor time management rather than simply not feeling ready.
Her words resonated so much because it seems 2015 still needed some recognition, it wasn't ready to be tossed. So, I've decided to use January to do just that - to look back. Even though, looking back seems uneasy and foreign. It seems a little counter-culture.
So much of our time is spent envisioning how we want to live better, the things we want to try and do, who we want to reach out to for a cup of coffee.
And we can still do that, but I think it's really hard to decide on a path to walk on when you aren't quite sure where you've been or how you're really doing.
The hubs and I do a "temperature check" once in a while. A way to see how our relationship is going and a safe place to ask, "Am I loving you well?"
So that's what this month will be for me friends. And then after that, I'm just not sure. But I'd love to walk in this together. I'd really like to encourage each other as we look back and talk through the best and hardest parts of 2015.
I'd love to make this a place to dream together.
If you're feeling a little out of sorts or behind this year - I feel you friend. I am right there too. It's sort of why I haven't written in this little space in a while. I've thought of you & words but I just couldn't get myself here. I needed to give myself permission to slow down, be still, and curl up with a good book.
[By the way, currently I am reading For the Love, by Jen Hatmaker & Make it Happen, by Lara Casey. Jen's book is a gem - you'll literally laugh out loud. And Lara's has already hit my heart in chapter one. She encourages us all to chase present over perfect and abandon all those "shoulds" in our life. I have a sneaky feeling most all of us can relate to that.]
If you aren't sure where to start this year, maybe start here with these questions. The hubs and I talked through a few of these together before company came over. And then again on a hike. It's really good to do these with someone you love - a friend, sibling or spouse.
One of our favorite questions was, What were some of the unexpected joys of 2015? I love the idea of taking a few moments to celebrate all you've done & experienced this year. Because chances are, once you write it all down or say it out loud, what might seem like a little, adds up to a lot.
I'll go first, okay?
// Unexpected joys of 2015 //
- Became an Aunt. More importantly, witnessing my sister become a mother.
- Growth of community - finally feeling at home here in our town.
- Celebrated one year of writing on my blog.
- Hosted a yoga + writing retreat with a dear friend. Got to retreat with some incredible women.
- Learning the art of neighboring & doing my best to practice it well.
- Hosted a Shabbat dinner in our home - homemade challah bread and all!
- Left a job that wore me down [without another job lined up] & praise God He opened a door that challenges me and fits well with this season.
- Hosted a Noonday party. [Ladies, check this business out. It is wonderful. All my favorite jewelry comes from them.]
- Read a few awesome books - The Fringe Hours, Anything, If you find this letter, Scary Close, The Goldfinch, Love Does, The Gifts of Imperfection.
- Welcomed a friend & his pup to live with us.
- Celebrated one year of marriage.
- Had the joy of collaborating with other writers & creatives through an Advent Series on the blog.
- Started a weekly spoonful series to encourage, uplift, share joys, recipes & struggles.
- Began a more intentional yoga practice.
- Sought advice and wisdom during a really restless season and was able to work with an incredible coach.
- Went to Storyline Conference & had the pleasure of meeting my homegirl Shauna Niequist.
- Travelled to a few beautiful places - Asheville, Australia & New Zealand.
- Slowly learning that assertiveness can be a good thing.
- Hosted a community dinner to help raise money for the refugee crisis.
Phew. It's been a good year y'all. And I don't say that to pat myself on the back, I say that because there were moments through all the good that felt really hard and I wondered what the heck I was doing - if anything at all. Have you felt like that before?
I urge you to jot down a few of your unexpected joys from 2015, share them below - I'd love to hear them. Or if you'd feel more comfortable - send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
I'd love to read what made 2015 a year to remember.
We're here to cheer each other on loves. We're here to do this life thing together.
Thank goodness for that.