On writing | Chances are, if you’re participating in #reverb it’s because you like writing. Or at least want to like writing. Writing is like a muscle. Use it or lose it. What do you do every day to hone your craft? Or, what would you like to do each day to contribute to your writing?
Writing has always been a practice for me. I still don't write as often as I'd like. I often feel scattered - writing in notebooks, using 750words.com, drafting random emails to myself, etc. I feel like I should be more disciplined. I play with morning pages every so often. I fall in & out of habits around words. I guess the short answer to "what do you do every day to hone your craft?" is...not much of anything. I'd like to be more intentional, and to an extent...more open.
One Word | The original prompt is "what one word could describe your 2014?" Changing it up to reflect on my One Little Word - FORWARD.
I've written before about FORWARD being a foundation this year, rather than a daily call to action. I think that I did move forward in many areas of my life...and my OLW helped me to recognize that progress, however small, was/is still important. Overall, I think that FORWARD was the right word (not that any word is right or wrong) for 2014. I'm ready for closure with that word, and looking forward (see what I did there?) to working with my 2015 word.
Soul food | What food did you discover this year? Or maybe you discovered a new way to prepare your favorite food. Or a new cookbook. Or a new restaurant. Tell us about your culinary adventures.
I bought a slew of new cookbooks in the first part of 2014, thanks to a generous giftcard from my employer (in recognition of my 15 year work anniversary). To be honest, I'm much better at looking at the cookbooks than actually cooking from them. I cooked/ate a lot of "hippie hash" (Dan's term) this year - basically just a compilation of greens, veggies, and protein (eggs, seitan, tofu) sauteed with grass-fed butter or olive oil. In the category of "culinary adventures"...there was that time that Barb and I ate our way through New Orleans (the shrimp was unbelievable!), the multiple scoops of Humphrey Slocombe ice cream while in San Francisco, and a handful of interesting business dinners in various cities.
Challenges | What did you wrestle with in 2014? What did you learn? What challenges do you foresee in 2015?
I wrestled with frustration around my house not selling. I wrestled with a few relationships that faded away. I wrestled with changes at work. I wrestled with feeling like I wasn't doing enough to create the life that I want. Through all of this, I learned that kindness & grace are hard, but worth it. I learned that patience is a skill that takes constant practice. And most of all, I learned that it's okay to begin again...and again...and again...and again. For 2015, I think change will be the challenge - putting the house on the market again, Hope's university graduation, Austin's high school graduation, Austin's (still undecided) university move - it's destined to be an ever-moving year.
Stuff and Things | What products have you discovered this year that you love? Tell us all about them, and why you love them. Become the celebrity spokesperson of whatever it is you like!
I've made a conscious effort to pare down stuff, so it's a pretty small list! I finally tried Everlane, and LOVE the quality. I am crazy over this drugstore find - Go Curlier. I really can't think of anything else!
Purging | What did you get rid of this year? Physical things you tossed out or donated? Or did you purge a bad relationship, job, etc…?
Short answer - SO MUCH. We did a huge purge when we first put the house on the market. I think that we took 3 carloads to Goodwill. I've still got a bunch of scrapbooking stuff to get rid of (who doesn't??). I've been ruthless about purging clothes (oh hey, capsule wardrobe!). I did purge a couple of relationships (soooo hard for a people collector)...and worked on purging a lot of self-judgement (still in progress).
Home | Tell us about what home meant to you this year. Are you a homebody? Did you do a renovation? Move? Redecorate?
Are you tired of this story yet? #truth - I didn't expect to be sitting in this very room, typing a blog post, in December. I was SURE that I would be in a new apartment. For me, home meant letting go of outcomes...trusting that there's a plan.
Thanks and Gratitude | What are you so grateful for? How did you count your blessings in 2014?
So. Very. Much. I am thankful that I got to spend the 1st three two months of the year with my brother (miss him so). I am thankful that I was surrounded by family as we said goodbye to my grandfather. I am (always) thankful for my amazing kids. I am (always) thankful for my friends - they are the family that I choose, each & every day. I am thankful for coffee and red wine. I am thankful for texts from the girls (Angie, Em, Steph, Barb, Josie, Gabby). I am thankful for the #hothipster that I met at a business dinner that I almost didn't go to. I am thankful for the opportunity to travel for work and pleasure. I am thankful for acupuncture & low-pain days. I am thankful for Sunday coffees with MaryBeth. I am thankful for forgiveness, kindness, and grace.
Energy | What gave you energy this year? What took away your energy?
I had the opportunity to facilitate several workshops over the course of this year - all part of a "culture change" initiative at work. Each and every session renewed my commitment to living my best life, to learning, and to making choices. THAT is what gives me energy. I became more aware of my lean toward super empathy - taking on the energy (especially negative energy) from those around me. It's draining.
I think that's the end of my #reverb posts for this year. I'm headed back to work tomorrow, which is actually okay. I'm craving a return to routine. I'll be back with a few more end-of-2014 posts, but I'm mostly just looking forward to kicking off 2015. I'm excited about my One Little Word®. I'm excited to document the year with Project Life® (or something close to it). I'm even excited to turn 44 in a few days.
Thank you, as always, for reading!