Tuesday, December 31, 2013

For the New Year

The media is overflowing today with advice on the New Year. Should one make New Year’s resolutions? How does one stick to them?  Make them obtainable!  I’ve also noticed another, smaller movement, particularly among bloggers, which suggests choosing a word or phrase as one’s theme for the year.  I’m going to try that.

For as long as I can remember my resolutions have been very similar from year to year: exercise more, drop sugar from my diet, take time to smell the roses…you know them, they are probably yours, too.  I enjoy following Always Well Within and when I read Sandra’s post about choosing a word instead of resolutions a word instantly popped into my head: LISTEN.  So that is going to be my goal for the year.

Listen? To the many people I come in contact with each week, from family to students to choir members to the clerk at the supermarket-what are they saying, not what do I want to say to them; to my body, for its needs for exercise, healthy food and rest; to myself, my strong intuition, for what is right for my life at this time; and to the Spirit, or God, for infinite wisdom which simply cannot be described.

I will let you know how it goes.  To group what used to be a long list under one word seems liberating and attainable.

As I think back on 2013 I am filled with gratitude:  for friendships, including time spent with far-flung friends, for my mother’s first trip to Maine in 10 years, for meaningful work, for Emily’s pregnancy, for Bill’s relatively good health at age 80, and for the addition of our dear dog Prudy to our lives.

A Happy New Year to you.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Snow Storm

Announced by all the trumpets of the sky,
Arrives the snow, and, driving o'er the fields,
Seems nowhere to alight: the whited air
Hides hills and woods, the river and the heaven,
And veils the farm-house at the garden's end.
The sled and traveller stopped, the courier's feet
Delayed, all friends shut out, the housemates sit
Around the radiant fireplace, enclosed
In a tumultuous privacy of storm.

      Ralph Waldo Emerson, The Snow Storm

According to the weather woman it was to be a "whopper" of a storm, and she was right.  About a foot of snow has fallen, starting in the night and now combined with gusty winds.  For the first time in a 25-year career as a church musician I was unable to get to work this morning and our service of Advent Lessons and Carols scheduled for this afternoon, has been postponed until tomorrow evening.

What a gift this day is.  Finally, a pause in this hectic season with a chance to decorate the tree, write Christmas cards and make Christmas cookies from scratch.  I am loving every minute.