Define and Design 2016, Week Fifty-two

December 23

Creativity: Coordinating schedules and activities

Gratitude: Lunch and shopping with family…an absolutely fabulous day and night with the men in my life! I am so much enjoying having this time with my husband and both of our sons.

Joy: Youngest is home for Christmas! Oysters and firepit. A visit with good friend to exchange Christmas gifts.

Awareness: Humor is contagious!

December 24

Creativity: Mind mapping

Gratitude: A leisurely morning with hubby and both sons. Safe trip to the mountains with family and a stop for lunch along the way.

Joy: Watching my sons bottle beer. I can’t begin to tell you how wonderful it has been to have both of our sons under our roof this holiday season.

Awareness: It’s a lovely thought knowing the majority of these travelers are on their way to spend time with loved ones. Love is in the air!

December 25

Creativity: Android photography, cooking

Gratitude: A visit with MIL at the nursing home and got to visit with my SIL as well.

Joy: Family dinner with my mom and sisters, birds at my mom’s feeder, love and laughter

Awareness: I haven’t enjoyed a Christmas this much in a while.

December 26

Creativity: Writing

Gratitude: Made it back safely to the beach, time with my mom, hubby, and both sons

Joy: Sushi with hubby and Youngest at our favorite neighborhood sushi restaurant. We are sorry they will be closing their doors at the end of this week but so happy we got to eat with them one last time to say goodbye.

Awareness: The sky exploded in a brilliant array of orange and pinks and fizzed out as quickly as it happened…so glad I didn’t miss that short sunset.

December 27

Creativity: Writing

Gratitude: Got started on my taxes, took down the Christmas trees and decorations

Joy: Steak dinner with hubby and Youngest, phone call from Oldest, movie time with hubby and Youngest

Awareness: Sand slipping through the funnel of an hour glass is an accurate description of the fleeting of time.

December 28

Creativity: Reading about writing and stained glass

Gratitude: Safe arrivals for Youngest and Oldest to their destinations, finally tackled long overdue yardwork

Joy: Spending the day with hubby, watching movies, eating chocolate and drinking a glass of wine, Oldest’s fabulous sleuth work in digging through land records at the court house and uncovering genealogy information we’ve been searching for many years…I now know the names of my 3X and 4X great grandparents on one line in which I’d been stumped.

Awareness: Patience pays…answers to questions that need to be answered come in their own time.

December 29

Creativity: Made a 15 pound pan of lasagna!

Gratitude: a rainy day off so I stayed in my pjs all day!

Joy: Talking genealogy with Oldest, glass of wine with hubby, snuggly furry babies

Awareness: I am an early riser, and most times I go to bed at a decent hour. Even if I stay up I still don’t sleep soundly. I’ve tried to stay up late and sleep in, but it just doesn’t seem to work for me. I’ve always been this way, wonder if I’m just wired this way.

December 30

Creativity: Writing

Gratitude: My niece and her longtime girlfriend got married!

Joy: view of a gorgeous sunset while on the road, sushi dinner at our friend’s restaurant (these are the first time owners of the sushi place in my neighborhood that is closing. We don’t get to our friend’s current restaurant as often as we’d like since it’s located in another city), a glimpse of fine snow flurries.

Awareness: Decided to start a bullet journal this year as my own way of personal accountability with a dash of creativity. I know I am more likely to stick to schedules and push toward goals if I write them down. I also know being appreciative of life helps me with awareness and creativity and instills calmness within.

December 31

Creativity: Cut DirtMan and Oldest’s hair, researched bullet journaling

Gratitude: scent of wood fire burning (fireplaces and stoves) in the neighborhood

Joy: Spent the day with the hubby test driving cars. Watching the twinkling lights in the neighborhood while sipping a glass of wine with the hubby.

Awareness: Of the many things I intended to do this year my most successful was my pledge to defeat the daily Spider Solitaire Challenge, ha! That said, I did live a creatively appreciative and joyfully aware year. I did find by allowing inspiration and pleasure of artistic expression to lead my pursuits my focus was on stained glass, writing, and photography. I did manage to get in a bit of embroidery and quilting, but I’m honestly not sure if I picked up a crochet needle this year.

As for 2017 I plan to continue to pursue my creative endeavors as inspiration leads me. I intend to keep a bullet journal for my own personal use, not to be posted. Perhaps I will post on “Relishing the Moments”. For now I make no blog commitments. I plan to allow 2017 unfold in its own time. Happy New Year to each of you! As in the beginning of each year I leave you with this:

May Your Blessings Be Abundant

I wish for you a life of simple abundance; an abundance of necessary tools to learn to bend with the wind, stand strong against the tide, and forge trails across life’s arduous mountains.

I wish for you the gift of time, moments of explicit joy with those you love. I want you to open your hands wide and let time escape and settle in your heart. I wish for you time to touch the morning; to feel the cool wetness of dew as it clings to the grass beneath your feet. I wish for you the time to see birds in flight; to notice the perfection of each single feather giving lift and how they join a myriad of others to create a formation which soars the vast blue skies. I wish for you the stillness of time to hear that voice; the one that calls deep within and guides you among the living. I wish for you the opportunity of time to taste the salt of the ocean so that you may enjoy the sweet pungency of earth. I wish for you time to smell the fragrance of daily living; the bittersweet scent of disappointment so you may savor the aroma of fulfillment. I wish for you time to know the value of living.

I wish for you the gift of vision so you might see the colorful rainbow of your life; the possibility of who you can become and the immeasurable value of who you are.

I wish for you the ability to take sorrow and weave it into a basket of hope; that you might know strength is developed through adversity, and character is built by conquering fear and overcoming obstacles.

I hope you will learn to accept defeat as a rung on the ladder of success. I wish you the wisdom to recognize success as you walk along its terrain and know the valleys and peaks are not measured upon the opinions of others.

I desire patience for you to wait your turn, to know your timing is not always yours to choose. I wish you to be able to let go of control and allow your life to flower of its own accord.

I wish for you prosperity; to know it does not always come in material form and the intuition to feel the richness laden within the layers of your soul.

I wish for you faith not only in times of distress; but to know you are always loved in every moment and in every situation.

I wish for you mercy upon your own mistakes and forgiveness toward others. I wish for you a grateful spirit; an appreciation of those around you and all you are offered in this life. I wish you grace to pave a life of love.

I wish for you a generous heart, compassionate soul, good intentions, and a life of positive influence.

I pray for many moments of happiness in your life, but more importantly joy because joy is not merely a feeling but a condition of existence. More than this I wish you peace, a comfort which resides deep within and transcends all understanding.

I wish you conservation of your own well-being: I pray for your good health that you will make wise choices and reap the benefits of walking in comfort to enjoy every step of your journey.

I ask that you know the difference between being alone and being lonely; that you will find comfort in yourself and strength in knowing you are never truly alone.

I wish for you trust in trying times and compassionate hands to reach out and pick you up when you are down.

I wish for you to know the importance of limitations but also the freedom and power to step outside of self imposed boundaries.

I wish you the desire to let go of anger and shame and replace them with a calm spirit and self-worth. I wish you acceptance of your past as it has created your beautiful soul of today.

I wish you work to challenge your being, play to enjoy life‘s pleasures, and rest to recharge your faculties. I wish you the opportunity to teach your craft and to serve others and the poise to receive the same. I wish you balance among your many interests and harmony in your life.

I pray your struggles are few and far between and never more than you can bear. I also pray you grow from your experiences and your healing be fully restored.

I wish for you clarity in times of chaos and discernment in times of doubt; that you will continue to reach when you feel nothing within your grasp.

I pray you recognize the many gifts in life which are free to those who reach for them. I pray you will continue to dance among the wildflowers while you reach for the stars.

I pray you will not feel you are entitled to life but blessed to live it.

I pray you will view the power of surrender as an act of acceptance; that you will both give and receive daily as needed.

I wish you immeasurable love and continuous light in all you encompass.

Whether your needs are physical or spiritual I pray your thirst might be quenched and your hunger satisfied all the days of your life; that you know your visit here is not absolute but life and love ring eternal.

May you find a piece of heaven in all you touch on earth.

May you may always live your life as poetry in motion.

~Susan Carter Payne