chocolate + paper + scissors


Getting things down on paper

Happy New Year! Welcome to your clean slate, your blank canvas: 2011.

It feels really good to say that after packing away our Christmas decorations. I’ll admit that putting everything away is always bittersweet; my daughter was disappointed to come home from school on Tuesday to find a tree-less home (me, too – I miss the smell, especially!). But – she does seem to be excited about the new year and being back with her friends at school. And that is a great thing.

Last year was a special year – and despite the few health issues that came up in our family, I am happy and blessed to say that we are all healthy. We mourned with dear friends who suffered loss – but were inspired by their strength. We were able to visit with precious friends from afar and make new friends nearby. We helped welcome new babies to the world! We also started a new journey as a family with our daughter's beginning kindergarten. Her two year-old brother has also begun to find his voice and his place in this great big world. Thank you, 2010, for so many experiences and lessons. (And, thanks to the lovely Katie Brown for reminding me to thank 2010!)

Alas, let us turn our eyes to a new energy for the new year!

Isn’t a new start a fresh, comforting feeling? Each time I’ve thought of the new year this week, I keep visualizing a beautiful vase of bright yellow daisies – even though we’re in the heart of winter. Fun, creative energy, renewal, new dreams and goals (and hot chocolate) – all special things for this time of year.

On the morning of New Year’s Day, while the kids watched their morning program, I took a few minutes while standing at the kitchen counter with a cup of hot tea and my two notebooks. So many thoughts came rushing to my mind that I could barely capture them in time! I didn’t realize I had so many thoughts that needed a safe place to land.

I always keep two small notebooks with me at all times – one is my to-do list, and the other is a small journal where I keep my ideas, thoughts, wishes, dreams – which may eventually get to my to-do list! This week, they’ve been drawing lots of thoughts and ideas from me, and for this, I’m grateful.

These ideas on paper have revealed to me that I definitely have a few concrete, key personal priorities to focus on, including:

  • Improving time management/my relationship with time
  • Making more time for creative projects
  • Maintaining a good (yet realistic) health regime to have more energy for my myself (and thus our family)
  • Intentionally surrounding myself (and family) with more visual beauty in our home

It’s really amazing how a blank sheet of paper can literally pull thoughts from your mind.

Have you tried this lately?

When you have a free moment, try keeping a small pad of paper or index card nearby (or in your pocket) to record your thoughts. If you don’t have a free moment (understandable), when you think of something while you’re working, cooking, playing with your children – write it down.

You’ll be very glad you did! I bet you’ll be surprised at everything that comes to mind.

On a housekeeping note, in the spirit of being more honest with myself and my abilities, I’ve decided to post once a week. I’m hoping to sprinkle in some recipes and nutrition tips, too, as I have many I’d like to share.

Looking forward to more of 2011 with you!

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