They start getting birthday presents that are perfect for you!
Month: January 2018
January: New Year, New Beginnings: QuotationStandard
Let me listen to me and not to them.
– Gertrude Stein
Let us have faith in each other. Let us not grow weary and lose heart, for there are more seasons to come and there is more work to do.
– Hillary Clinton [11/11/16]
Let us not grow weary of doing good, for in good season we shall reap.
– also from that speech by H. Clinton, drawn from Galatians 6:9
Link: Lin-Manuel Miranda Answers 20 Questions about 2016Standard
January: New Year, New Beginnings: ReflectionStandard
What small thing can you do when you wake up in the morning to tap into that sense of marvel before you start your day? [365 Health and Happiness Boosters by M.J. Ryan]
I really want to be a morning person.
I also really want to be a nite-owl.
I’m naturally more of the latter, although I can stay up until 2am, and still get up at 7 if I need to. If I don’t need to, I tend to stay in bed, whether it’s sleeping or reading or writing. I actually get a lot done in my pajamas. I think that works for wintertime. It’s cold and it’s grey, and I don’t want to go anywhere, including out of my cocoon.
At the moment, the sun is shining, and it’s deceiving me into thinking it’s not quite so cold out, and enticing me to leave the house, which I will almost certainly regret.
Spring mornings just have that sense of marvel. It’s the same sun, the same window, the same temperature on the inside, but what is it about spring mornings that feel differently? Perhaps it’s the angle of the sun, the way it peers in the window, the glow from behind the bare trees. The glow begins a little earlier each day, and it can be not only inspirational, but motivational.
It urges me to rise, to grasp everything.
I read two books every morning before I check facebookagram and my email. The first is the one where that initial question/prompt came from. MJ Ryan’s book of health and happiness boosters. Some i ignore – they don’t quite work for me, and that is what I like about the book; take it or leave it. Take what works, and leave the rest. So far, there are questions to ponder, breathing techniques, quotations, and we’ll see what else as the year progresses. One page, or half a page really each day.
The second book is a year long devotional study dedicated to the women of the Bible. Each week, I’m introduced to a new Biblical woman, and each day a different thought about her to read and meditate on. It’s a Monday through Friday, which leaves Saturday and Sunday for regular worship or reviewing what I’ve read. So far, Sarah and Hagar. Up next: Lot’s Wife and then Rebekkah, and so on.
Those are the two that get me started and my mind moving, getting ready for whatever the day brings: reading, errands, writing, phone calls.
I know it’s not quite enough; there is something missing from my morning ritual, and I’m still not sure what it is, but I continue looking for it. However, those two books are small ways to start my day when I wake up in the morning. It takes little time, and so I can fit it in almost every morning before anything else no matter how structured the rest of the day is, and it carries through the weekend to give me the stability that often falls apart once school and work are over for the week and everyone wants to control the day.
I’ll keep you updated.
What small thing can you change or add to your morning?
Last year, or maybe it was the year before, I gave up the word resolutions. The connotation of New Year’s Resolutions is the assumption that they won’t be kept. We go in thinking pessimistically and so our resolutions tend to be grandiose and next to impossible to accomplish. Then, as predicted, like clockwork or a calendar page turning, we give them up and go back to our bad habits.
I settled on goals for awhile, which was a little more proactive, and a little more doable, but for me, goals set a finite destination to what I want to acocmplish and goals wasn’t quite the word I was looking for.
My new word (third if you’re counting) for 2018 is Intention [s], either singular or plural, whichever one fits at the moment. I can wholeheartedly thank Gen Padalecki for the inspiration and the introduction to that word in this context. I must confess that I did not watch her entire vlog or read her blog for that day. As soon as I heard the word intention, I was off to the races. It hit me, inside and out, mentally and physically. That was my word, the word I’d been searching for.
So, now that we are here between the end of the third week and the end of the fourth week, not only of January, but of our new year, what are the intentions you’ve been keeping? Have you added any more since your initial goal-making or resolution claiming or habit-making or -breaking in the last three weeks?
Where do you stand? And where are you venturing? Give your intentions a thought or two, and get back to me. As this morning’s quote reminds us, writing down our goals makes them a little more tangible, and if they’re tangible, they’re doable.
[Note: Some of this week’s posts were originally scheduled to be written last week, but I’ve been very ill since Wednesday. The only two that are slightly off as far as timely are the reflection for January, which was supposed to appear yesterday, and the review of the Wayward Sisters episode of Supernatural, which will appear later in the week.-Kb]
When you write down your ideas you automatically focus your full attention on them. Few if any of us can write one thought and think another at the same time. Thus a pencil and paper make excellent concentration tools.
– Michael Leboeuf
Last Wednesday, I had planned to talk about focus, both in general and what my focus may or may not be for my writing, and that was going to tie into a post for this past Friday about intentions. Unfortunately, on Wednesday, i couldn’t focus on anything except continually alternating between covering myself and uncovering myself with two or more (or less) blankets, and being all around miserable and sick.
It really just illustrates that you can have the perfect planner, the schedule mapped out, the outline written, the post forming effortlessly in your [my] mind, and life will find a way to knock you down.
Because that’s what life is about. Whether they be big or small, life is about facing challenges.
I spent all day in bed on Wednesday, barely lifting my head when an angel from church texted me that she had made my family dinner. She had no idea that I was sick or how much of a lifesaver she was truly being. She had mentioned it last week, but it was a maybe, so when she called, it was a wonderful godsend.
And that’s also what life is about. Sharing love, sharing food, sharing ideas and thoughts and challenges. Apart from my family and church, my writing is the most important thing to me. I think that’s because it encompasses every part of my life. It surrounds and warms, it emotes and comforts, it laughs and screams, and when I can’t do it, for whatever reason, it pains me.
Choose was/is my word for 2018. My second word is focus. Not merely the pinpointing of a topic or a photograph or a subject, but where will my writing take me? Where will I take it? I consider myself a Jane of all trades, which is simply another way of expressing that I take on all kinds of things and remain expert in none of them. Like a Jeopardy contestant, I’m all about a little knowledge about a lot of things, and that’s actually a great thing for a writer, but is it a good thing for a writer’s audience?
Only time will tell, and you, dear reader, will also tell; by your follows and your likes and your opinions, which I love and appreciate.
So where is my focus? What do I write about? So many things interest me, and I can expound on many of them: spirituality and fandom. Self-help and self-assessment. Travel. Writing. I feel like sometimes I can’t decide on which writer, which person I want to be in the moment. I multi-task, but when I looked up synonyms for multi-task, it gave me focus as an antonym. How strange. When I muti-task I tend to focus more on what I’m doing even if it’s three things at once and a delegation of a fourth.
How does all of this align with who I am and the kind of writer I want to be?
What’s the one thing that connects them all for me or to me besides me?
2018 may take me on that journey of discovery. A fork in the road or a crossroads? We’ll see.
Focus on the journey, not the destination. Joy is found not in finishing an activity but in doing it.
– Greg Anderson
Wayward Sisters – A PreviewStandard
Let me take a moment to introduce you to the geneology of how this Wayward Sisters pilot came about.
Way back in season 5 of Supernatural, we met Sheriff Jody Mills, and she quickly became a fan favorite. In season 9, she helped save Alex, a wayward teen who had been living with vampires. Fans remembered Castiel’s vessels’s daughter Claire, and wondered what happened to her. With another sheriff being introduced a couple of episodes earlier, the fans wanted the two sheriffs to meet, which they eventually did in season 10. A fan group was born: Wayward Daughters Academy. Jody and Donna’s home for wayward girls to teach them the ways of hunting.
And so a movement was born.
Two and a half years later, and this movement birthed a back-door pilot for a Supernatural spin-off series.
Joining Sheriff Jody and Sheriff Donna, Alex and Claire are two new young women: Patience and Kaia. Patience is a psychic, like her grandmother Missouri Mossley, and Kaia is a dreamwalker who was helping Jack find Mary Winchester in “the bad place,” another universe.
Here are a few links to get you excited for tonight’s premiere as well as including some basic informaton on the main characters.
Ultimate Wayward Sisters Watch Guide
How Supernatural’s All-Female Spin-off, Wayward Sisters, was Born
Wayward Sisters Documentary:
This is it, guys. This is not a drill. This is the week we’ve been waiting for for 2.5 years. Please, please:
• Watch live this Thursday night at 8EST on the CW
• Shout positivity on every social network
• Use the hashtags! #Supernatural #WaywardSisters
• Take pics in your shirts!
• SPREAD THE LOVE 💙
Book: School of Awake by Kidada JonesStandard
As I mentioned yesterday, my daughter and I started reading a new book together. We have just finished chapter four and we have completed all of the activites up until that point.
I’m not sure that this book would have reached my radar if not for my social media relationships. I follow the author’s sister on Instagram, and she mentioned the book and its Instagram page. When I investigated further, I easily saw that this was a perfect book for my daughter. I decided that it would make a great Christmas gift, and it was well worth the extra investment of having my own copy for my Kindle. My daughter and I often cuddle in bed, watching television, writing together, coloring, and reading.
When we began the book, I hadn’t realized that it included activities, which we obviously couldn’t do while lying in bed right before sleeping. We continued the reading until the Sunday after New Year’s when we spent the entire day developing and decorating our soul-soothing tool kits, the first activity in the book. It is also the activity that ties all the others together. That first day, we also put together our galaxies-on-the-go. In the evening, we sat together on the sofa with some old magazines and a pair of scissors and gluesticks and made our self-portraits.
We journaled about all of the S.O.A. [School of Awake] Moments, filled in the blanks, and answered the questions from the first three chapters.
School of Awake: A Girl’s Guide to the Universe is just that: a guide. There’s advice, there’s self-reflection, introspection, affirmations, positive reminders of what’s important, a look at the bigger picture, spirituality that works for girls who either have religion or don’t. There are moral examples and choices, but it isn’t preachy. It isn’t scolding or condascending. It sets the perfect tone of talking to girls that is old enough, but not too adult, but at the same time it doesn’t talk down to the reader.
It lets us explore our creativity together and apart through our various styles.
There is space in the hard copy book to write the answers and take notes. My suggestion to my daughter and what we’ve elected to do is to keep our writing in our journals. I think at 12, my daughter’s answers may change over time. I know that at 51, my answers also will.
Visit School of Awake’s Instagram to see pictures of other girls enjoying the book and expressing their creativity and how they’re enjoying their universes. I will continue to share our progress here as we discover more things about ourselves, both as individuals and as a mom and daughter.
January: New Year, New Beginnings: Art/PhotoStandard
This is actually both an art and a photo. For Christmas, we bought my daughter the book, The School of Awake by Kidada Jones. It is a wonderful guide to the universe for girls. My intention was always to buy myself the digital version for my Kindle so I could follow along with my daughter. More on this tomorrow in my review of the book.
One of the ongoing projects in the book is creating a Soul-Soothing Tool Kit. I love the idea of tool kits for a variety of life experiences.
This is a photo of our tool kits up to chapter four.
A Day On…Standard
Georgia Representative John Lewis, a civil rights icon calls the Martin Luther King holiday “a day on, not a day off.” Join community celebrations but also join community service.
I would share this beautiful artwork and sentiment from my friend, Brother Mickey McGrath. This wasn’t done specifically for Martin Luther King Day, but I think it fits in so well, and any excuse that I have to share his art makes me happy. Continue reading