New Year’s Eve is here. I suspect most of you will not read this till it has already passed. Years prior would have found me out with friends, planning activities for our family to celebrate Auld Lang Syne, or other such festivities. This year? We are all chilling at home doing whatever we enjoy. In our home the old year will slip away quietly into the night, ending on a subdued note. And I am very okay with this conclusion.
Literally ‘chilling’ outside, by myself, with a cup of coffee, small fire, and some favorite YouTube vlogs I was considering these past few years as well as those to come…a profound revelation was about to take place when I concluded it was actually me shivering with cold. The windy, feels-like-34* weather got to me and I came inside to the warmth of our 70* house.
As a result I can not tell you:
- my word for the upcoming year
- my top 5 goals of self improvement
- 10 books I want to read
- 7 ways to bring order to your life
What I can tell you is that sometimes, often, things do not turn out as we expected. You can fight it, struggle to change it, or throw a kicking and screaming tantrum and things may or may not change. Or you can quietly and contently gather up your coffee cup, put your chair away, and head inside to warm back up.
It might be that you find yourself in quiet awe of how things have worked out better than you could ever have imagined, especially after the major shakeup sometime back. These are the times when an awe inspired, breathless prayer of, “Thank you!” holds a much deeper meaning.
Or perhaps you are still in the middle, struggling to catch your breath. Yup, been there too. On my knees, literally, asking, “Why??? But I thought….Now what?” You will not always be there. I promise. It may feel like it at this moment but that is not The Truth speaking. The truth is that you are loved, cared about, and a precious creation. You have a Father who cares for you. You are not alone in your struggles or concerns.
Looking ahead I do not know what will happen, who will come across my path, or even if a different path lay ahead. What I can do is try be prepared. Right now, I do not feel quite that way. For one, the house is starting to feel like it is in C.H.A.O.S. While that is not fully true it is what I feel like and that feeling then permeates into other areas of home life – while I am not behind on the kids’ schooling it could be more organized; we have food in the pantry but I can not walk into it as there are other items stashed there; laundry is no longer an easy task as wayward items have been waylaid there (same for the garage); and on it goes. Our routines are not optimal right now, yet they are not completely gone.
After some thinking and considering I have decided to go back to what has worked for me in the past – FLYLady. Very early in our marriage, a few years after graduating college, a fellow carpooler introduced me to a system of home making which works well for those of use who are not Type A born cleaners, and which goes deeper than “dust on Mondays, vaccum on Tuesdays”. While I have fallen off the wagon these past few years several of the routines have still stuck with me – my bed is made every morning and I do not let clean laundry lay around…well,not normally.
I love the gentle system she has, the encouragement, the positive message built in to cleaning being about blessing yourself and your family not about doing yet another job. “You can do anything for 15 minutes” is a very true statement. It is amazing what can be accomplished 15 minutes at a time.
As I quietly gather up my coffee cup and head inside I will continue to bless my family and myself by taking 15 minutes to climb back onto the warmer-then-34* wagon and head in a direction which will lead to being prepared for whatever the upcoming year has in store. Sure, I have goals for the garden, a general picture of what I want life to look like in 12 months, but ultimately I am not the one in control, no matter how many goals, bullet points, and awesome sayings I could create. (If you think different then you are welcome to send some rain out west right now.)
I am instead going to focus on FLYing and trying to put myself in a position to be ready for whatever the upcoming year, and the next, and the next, and…may have in store.
How are you approaching this upcoming year, this new month, or even tomorrow? Do you tend to have a very detailed plan or a more flexible guide? What has worked for you in the past?