From pagan celebrations of light to the dropping of the ball in Times Square, these year-end events are widely noted. But these changes take place with or without celebration.
Midnight tonight will slip away in star-filled skies around the world and we'll wake to a new year. We'll move forward hour by hour, day by day, finding ourselves, on occasion, surprised at "how time flies."
It begins on the shortest day of the year and then minute by minute the days grow longer. It's hard to notice the difference, but sometime mid-January someone will comment on how much more light there is, and we, too, will see it.
There is a lesson here of course: big changes are made possible by small measure.
As 2014 comes to a close I'm holding fast to big changes from small measures.
Rather than resolutions, I'm working toward goals in 2015. It's an idea that I'm adopting after reading how Chris Guillebeau puts it to work each year. It struck a chord with me and I'm giving it a go.
Working in small measure toward big changes, here's a partial list of my goals for 2015:
Pursuits magazine - January 2015 This is a big one! I've been working on a prototype and it's time to launch. Pursuits is a print magazine with a focus on hobbies, passions, and pastimes. Designed to help reduce stress, boost creativity, and increase happiness, it is a compendium of activities, how-to, insights and inspiration. I'm very excited about this new magazine and look forward to sharing it with you.
If you want to be notified when the magazine is launched, join our mailing list by filling out the form on the right.
Learn to Juggle I spend a lot of time sitting at the computer, and I'm looking for activities to balance the time spent behind a desk . . . a pastime to clear my head. If I'm able to master juggling in the next month or so, my goal is to pick another challenge, playing an instrument . . . I'll keep you posted! Stationery Line - I like writing letters and often make my own stationery. I've got lots of ideas and it's time to bring them to life.
What goals will you set in 2015? Write them down, and tell us about them by posting a comment below.
Layers of Meaning My mother turned 83 this week and I made her a birthday card. Making cards has become a ritual for me. Some are handmade, others a combination of handmade and computer elements. But in each one, I like to incorporate bits of meaning.
For my mom's card, I started with the first letter of her name, and then added a few elements: 8 diamonds (one for every decade), 3 flowers (one for each year after 80), and one heart (for good luck and love). Then I added diamonds to represent her children, (6 children, 4 grandchildren, and 2 great grandchildren).
I'm not sure she (or anyone else I've made cards for) would see or catch the meaning behind the symbols without me pointing them out, but as I make the card it allows me to really consider the person's life, likes, and how much they mean to me.
When I started making cards I worried they weren't polished enough. With this card, the letter isn't perfect, and there are things I would change were I to do it over, but I've discovered that's not so important. Letting go of making things perfect leads to finishing what I started and having something to give away. And people like handmade cards. It makes them feel special . . . which of course, they are.
I start with pencil, then draw over with pen, erase the pencil, and use color sparingly. Most of the time I use color pencil, sometimes watercolors.
Do you make your own cards? Post a comment and tell us about your process.
Finding the Light It was the night before Thanksgiving, 11:15 pm, and I was ready to go to bed. It was a full day of holiday baking, cooking, and cleaning. We were planning dinner for seven the next day and things were in good order.
Until the lights went out.
I knew it was possible, the forecast called for heavy snow (and power outages) starting at about noon, and the pop of a large pine branch giving way at about 4:00 pm put us on guard.
With the power out, and not knowing when it would be restored, we couldn't guarantee family coming from out of state that we could cook a meal let alone keep them warm.
We had to cancel. It was so disappointing. But as it is so often the day after a storm, it was bright, sunny, and still outside. And we had nearly a foot of snow on the ground. Snow that was heavy, wet, and good for snowballs.
Good snowball snow is the beginning of a great snowman, and I knew just what to do. Gathering my supplies, I headed out to build a snowman, a new winter beauty. (See the Shop for more.)
Oh, by the time I was done I felt so much better. The power of doing turned what started as a cold, bleak day into a day of gratitude and light.
P.S. Fortunately, our guests had purchased a turkey earlier in the week and cobbled together a fine meal at home.
Our power was restored 24 hours after it went out. We turned the heat up and put the turkey in the oven!