Sunday, January 22, 2017

Musings - January 2017

These musings used to be called "Currently, Month Year" - they've been re-named. But they are still just musings from the month. I hope you enjoy!

Books: I read things - light, easy reading -  over the holidays. It was lovely. Fiction paperbacks - Patricia Briggs' Alpha and Omega series - Hunting Ground, Fair Game, Dead Heat; Fire Touched from her Mercy Thompson series. Started Christine Wicker's non-fiction book on magic, Not in Kansas Anymore.

Gratitude: The year started with friends and wine. And an offer to go snowshoeing! (I'll report back in February). Small, thoughtful gifts from friends.  The roof over my head. Sweet pets. The curiosity of children. 

Listening: Good Life Project (podcast); Side Hustle School (podcast); The CoQuora Podcast and 5th Harmony's "Worth It" has been running through my head on repeat for days.....

IG from fav perfume house
Perfume: Sadly, Sencha Bleu No. 57 by TokyoMilk is gone. It was a huge hit with both me and the guy. Since I'm a perpetual tryer, it will be a while before it re-appears, perhaps during a spring. (I loved the scent. For me, the downside was the lack of sillage. Perhaps layering will help next time.) So, I've moved back to samples of a few things (Marble & Milkweed's line) as well as the mainstay of Les Perfumes de Rosine Majalis as I find it a perfect winter perfume. (Read more about my first encounter with  the warm, savory rose that is Majalis here.)

Random: This year brought a lot of changes and challenges. One was family.  There is one person in my family with a completely self-centered life outlook. It's my choice on how much I let that bother me and how much I choose to interact. I'm willing to accept the consequences of my choice to set boundaries, even if that means other people will choose not to be part of my life.

Stress: Don't the holidays just bring out the stress? (Or in my case, family) December is never my best month. Gifts that arrive late. Fending off the ridiculous expectations of others. More "things to do" than time. I hope you had time to take time for you - space and time to think and reflect to start your new year. 

Watching: The Blacklist (binged ALL of it on Netflix); The Magicians; and Bull.

Take-away - Sometimes change is the only constant and sometimes the constant won't change. How do you handle that which won't change?

Original musings posts you may enjoy:
Currently, October 2016
Message in a Bottle (2016)
Currently, July 2016
Currently, June 2016
Currently, May 2016
Currently, April 2016
Currently, March 2016
Currently, February 2016
Currently, January 2016

---As usual, pictures by me (unless cited otherwise) and you can tell!---

If you like journaling, you may like my book - 52 weekly journal prompts with beautiful imagery. Seasonally grouped but you can start anywhere, anytime.

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Friday, January 13, 2017

A Garden in Winter

Winter is the time to plan for the next year. It's a space for dreaming.  I moved last year. And the new space was welcoming, but didn't readily lend itself to large scale gardening. Certainly not on the scale I like. It was adequate for a small space; having even a small garden enhanced my life and recipes. Given the mild weather, I was even able to harvest peppers until November! (Image left of the last of the garden.)

The garden - as noted -  was small but adequate. (Nothing like the years I had squash for days.) Oregano. Basil, two kinds. Peppers. Tomatoes, 4 or 5 kinds. (I had bigger pots on either side with garden tomatoes  - beefsteaks and romas - from a friend.) The herbs were what I used the most. But I enjoyed the peppers and cherry tomatoes on a pretty consistent basis.  (Picture below of the first harvest of the year.)

At the new Bunny Haven North, in addition to the garden, there were a very few flowers: daffodils to greet me, wild pink geraniums by the recycling bin, and potted pink geraniums by the door step. Other garden visitors came. The neighbor's cat - Bumblebee. Bunnies. A lone (unwelcome) opossum. Cottage white butterflies.

A garden is a bit of a sad, unwelcoming thing in winter. A small garden, somehow even more so. But, there is space enough  in winter to plan. I'm not planning for this space. I've decided it's time for a change and am looking at a new space. There are lilacs and irises at the new space. I've been told I can have a proper veggie garden and plant some flowers. I'm excited but a little nervous about yet another shift for me, for the herd - so far they have been very adaptable, so I hope this will be okay. I don't know, but I hope. Because that's what gardeners do. I'll be in the new space before the lilacs bloom.

Take - away -  Adaptability is an asset. Remember to use all your assets.

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***All photos by moi! And you can tell.

Friday, January 6, 2017

2017 Non-Resolutions

I do not make resolutions. They seem flimsy and easily circumvented.  Also boring. Instead,  for 2017, I'm making a list of 7 questions to ask myself about my choices today:

I don't know by who said it or made
this image. I do like it.
  1. Did you eat more fresh food than processed?
  2. Did you move with intention?
  3. Did you sleep 7 hours or more?
  4. Did you say thank you to someone?
  5. Did you learn something new?
  6. Did you try something that frightened you?
  7. Did you do your best?
The hope, of course, is to say YES to all of them, every day. But most days, saying yes to 4 of them a day would be a victory that I'd be happy with.

Take-away - You can not control everything, but your choices shape your life. Make intentional choices.

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Monday, January 2, 2017

Lessons - 2016

Life is a continuing lesson. I'm reminded of that pretty often. I've taken, a few years ago, to jotting down lessons of specific importance or note as they happen in my life. I keep them in the Random section until the end of the year, and then share them.  Here are the lessons I learned in 2016.

  1. All things are temporary.
  2. Say more by speaking less. 
  3. When you want more for you, it doesn't mean you want less for anyone else. And PS - there really is enough for everyone. (Side note: This is a refinement of item 2 for 2015.)
  4. The past is just the past (Mary Chapin Carpenter); and it has nothing new to teach you, but why you left. Because people don't change. However, your changes are your choice.
  5. Make your bed and clear the sink. It makes everything else in the day easier to tackle.
  6. Get on the scale every other day. Accountability is critical in all endeavors.
  7. Don't bite off more than you can chew. (Yes, that is a Mississauga Rattler trying to swallow a fat toad.) 

Take-away - You make choices everyday. Most of them small, insignificant things. But they add up. Be mindful of your choices.

Other posts you might enjoy:
Photos by moi - and as usual, you can tell. (It's a bouquet of store bought enhanced by home grown. The home grown came from La Gram Russe's yard this summer. We tried to have fresh flowers for her every week. She is why we all love flowers.)

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PS. In 2016 I spent some time created a book of journaling prompts for 52 weeks - each paired with inspired quotes and gorgeous images.  Then I created a small, free 7 day sample book. 

1) My Gift to You - Follow the image below to download the free book I created - a 7 day journey of 2 journal prompts per day with a thought provoking quote and black and white imagery - the whole book offering a guided journaling experience.

2) The image below is another digital book I created - a year-long, start-anywhere, journaling prompts journey that pairs 52 inspiring quotes with gorgeous full-color images, each with 3 journaling prompts. 

(Please note, this blog is free. Please - please - please - read and enjoy. Purchases of my digital books via Gumroad are both secure and final. Select wisely. If you aren't ready to purchase, please enjoy my free book or keep reading this blog.)