Friday, January 3, 2014

Thoughts on 2013 and what's ahead in 2014


2013 is in the rear view mirror.  It came and went in a flash of color and changing time zones. Perhaps our busiest year for travel- Chicago, Atlanta, Paris, Healdsburg, Mexico City, New York City, Palm Springs, and Lake Tahoe. Whew. Each trip added to our love of discovery- both of ourselves and our ever changing surroundings. Mexico City was especially meaningful to me as a marker for turning 60.

I discovered that yoga brings me peace and a growing satisfaction with my body. I'm choosing to ignore the wrinkles and focus on increased balance and yes, inner peace. Balance- something that has shown up on my To Do list for years....that desire to experience the fullness of life in as many areas of my life as possible. Yoga invites me to consider the many layered meanings of balance through a stronger body and daily awareness of where I fit into the world.

This past year I decided to look at my possessions with an eye toward clearing out and letting go. I worked my way through every room in our house, touching, evaluating, deciding what I found useful, or believed to be beautiful. The criteria was inspired by a quote by William Morris. I moved away from a lot of "things" that I had accumulated over the years and the result was a more expansive living space and the secret knowledge of empty drawers and cleared out closets.

Our daughter and her family moved to New York City in July.  I felt sad. Separation was new for us. Over the next few months as I saw Jessica blossom in her new, challenging surroundings, my overriding emotion turned to pride. Her family is benefiting from a myriad of exciting opportunities that would not have been available if they'd stayed in California. And I'm learning that distance does make the heart grow fonder.

In my creative life I returned to designing jewelry. I began working with natural stones - lapis lazuli, malachite, Italian coral- with an eye toward simple and organic designs. One never knows whether customers' loyalty will shift with creative change but I was happy to find that they came along for the ride. 

My hope is that these lessons of expansion, acceptance and letting go will carry into the new year with even greater ramifications. How can I expand on what I learned last year?

My over-arching goal for 2014 is thoughtful consumption. By this I mean I would like to increase my awareness of why I buy something. I got pretty caught up in spending money, buying stuff, accumulating...during the past holiday season. That's an easy excuse...blame the media, blame the incessant emails with discount incentives.

I'm putting into place some steps I'll take before making a purchase and am hopeful that I will stay the course and follow through on my goal. Awareness is the first step.

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