I took stock this New Year's like never before. Is this my age making me more reflective? Perhaps. There's more to look back on, and I'm becoming more aware that my lifetime's future amount of time is growing more and more limited as I approach 50. It makes me want to live more intentionally.
So I have begun with this first week of 2017 incorporating a few intentional things. They are making me exceedingly happy. I wasn't quite finished preparing to start yet by January 3, so I dove in because time marches on even though I didn't feel prepared enough. I'm giving myself room for these concessions:
permission for these things to not be perfect,
knowing mistakes will happen,
and instead of seeing them as failure, recognizing I'll be better for the learning process.
So here are my favorite things from Week One of 2017.
My Intentional Theme for the year is TRUST
(in the Lord)
(for what I need)
(with what he wants)
The Control Freak–Worrier–Everything Just So version of me has to go. And besides, I don't have to decide everything. It's quite freeing actually (okay, and terrifying).
On a whim, I bought this powder pink leather journal. On another whim, I decided to use it as a bullet journal. I've read a little about bullet journaling and how a few people are using it. I've taken lots of sticky notes on what might work for me. I've never bullet journaled before, but I am a stickey note queen, and wouldn't it be nice for all that "stuff" to be in one tidy, pretty place? So this is what it's going to look like for me:
Daily Log = Daily Dump
It's a daily log of the things I think that needs to get out of my head. That can be "To Do" stuff, things I need to remember, something I want to look into later, a thought I want to capture. It's going to be a diary place to chronicle the things that are significant today — like "Who, What, When," another Adrian original he posted on FB today. For me, the bullet journal is the new stickey note. I keep a separate calendar. This is strictly a journal of free writing, organized only by date and bullet journal signifiers. I hope it has enough pages to last me a year. I hope I'm still using it at the end of the year.
I have started a few collections: LionsHeart, Gift Ideas, one called Trust, so I can look back at the end of the year to see all the times and ways God taught me to trust him more. Instead of Freak-Worry-Just So, I will write, list, and chronicle the testimony God is giving me about letting it all go—right into his hands.
And one I've stolen from Tsh Oxenreider, called Nightly Examen. Before I turn off the bedside lamp, I plan (because I haven't started this one yet - see? I wasn't ready but I started anyway.) to quick-review my day with this question: Where have I seen God at work today? One thing a day.
I'm keeping it simple—mostly handwriting. I'm using washi tape to mark collection pages, but other than that, it's a basic journal. I love the pretty stuff, but it would keep me from doing this and my brain and my soul need it more than my eyes need pretty pages.
My journaling Pinterest board for more inspiration.
3. WEEKNIGHT DINNER
My kids are old enough to come to terms with their vegetables. So even though it's causing nightly dinner crisis for one of my kids, I have started cooking clean. One week of clean meal planning is under my belt. A few meals that are utilitarian, a few that are scrumptious, one that works for eating crazy-late after Wednesday night church. It was a great first week, and I will build at least five more weeks worth of menu plans to hopefully build a new repertoire of weeknight dinner go-to recipes that keep us healthy and trimmer for the future. If it's a keeper, it gets printed and added to my green binder.
Scrumptious and more scrumptious from this week.
4. WORKING OUT
Okay, I only got two days in this week because it's a struggle, but I'm determined to win. I hate the gym, working out in public is not super power. Instead, I find my best success with videos in the privacy of 5AM and my living room. My favorites, in order, are my P.I.N.K. workouts, P90x3, and a small assortment of Jillian Michaels DVDs I've accumulated over the years. Stress relief and staying strong? Yes, please. PINK taught me how to eat clean, and the workouts target women's problem spots like tight hips, triceps, inner thighs, and obliques. But don't think this is a stupid-easy girly workout. These workouts will kick your hiney and are as challenging as Tony Horton or Jillian any day.
5. LORE FURGESON WILBERT's SAYABLE
I have enjoyed Lore's writing for several years now, but in the last months so much of what she has written has been beautiful, thought-provoking, and worth every minute I have spent reading her site. She also has begun to curate other beautiful writing online, and all those links are just as fabulous, quality writing, quality thinking, and challenging. Thank you, Lore. You have helped cut down my wasted time online, improved the quality of my online reading from hit-or-miss to almost all homeruns.
Here's a not-so-recent one that has stuck with me deep and long.
I hope your new year still feels new, and is still full of hope, peace, and promise.