Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Post Holiday Let Down

At last, its over...




To be perfectly honest, I'm a little depressed.

I don't know if its because it all happened so fast...First Jayden, then recoving, then Thanksgiving, then back to work, then Christmas...

Or perhaps it could be that being away from my own family this year was especially hard...Hard because I now have a son of my own and I want him to be near both sets of grandparents, hard because they were just here and its been 10 years since my parents visited one of my homes, hard becuase my sister and parents were together but we weren't there.

Perhaps its becuase I felt a little bit like many of the people in my life were not really trying all that hard this year, sort of like it was a chore and not a pleasure for them, like they felt put out or bothered to do something for some one else.

Perhaps its becuase we didn't really go look at lights this year as we normally do, or that I didn't watch all my holiday movies as I normally do, or that I didn't listen to "A Christmas Carol" over and over again like I normally do.

Perhaps its because I feel as though I just put the last Christmas decoration up and now its nearly time to put them all away again.

At any rate, Christmas has now offically come and gone...and the clean up has begun, the "North Pole" wrapping room has been put away, I've started sorting the gifts, making the "Thank You" list and working on my "Power of One" plan for the new year.

Peace, everyone!

Sunday, December 17, 2006

The Power of One

There is a theory in sales that has to do with the power of one.

What would happen today if you called one more client, made one more sale, cut one dollar from your expenses, etc. Its about how making one small change in approach and habit can result in dramatic change over time.

Think about this…

If you saved one dollar a day, every day, you’d have $365 at the end of the year. If you cookie-jarred the cost of one coffee at Starbucks a day (lets just call that $5 a day for arguments sake…or because, like me, you like expensive coffee!) the result would be $1825 saved a year.

The power of one can really be driven home with a new baby in the house. He’s one person in one household. But his arrival required tons of shopping and preparation. His one arrival generated three showers, two significant trips, a newly decorated room. He is one person in our household, but our entire schedule and lives were rearranged to accommodate him. As one very small thing, he has completely changed our lives.

And (this really does tie together) I was pondering how in the world I manage to keep the shower clean and sparkly all the time, but that other housekeeping chores are not so successful.

And in pondering my shower, I realized we spend a couple of seconds a day on the shower squeegee-ing the glass and spraying shower spray on the tile every day. That one small effort every day saves lots of time and frustration later.

So…(here is where it ties together)…I’m constructing my goals for the new year based on this power of one. Small changes done daily – one of this and one of that – in order to make a dramatic impact in my life in the future.

Its not all fleshed out yet, but it will be something like this:

One book of scripture a day. Easy, right? I get very caught up in “Read the Bible in a Year” and all that. And frankly it gets in the way of me just digging into my Word. I’ve heard it is more effective to memorize one verse and store it in the heart than it is to read the entire Bible in a year and not recall a single word. Makes sense.

One bit of exercise a day. This is a biggie for me. I don’t really WANT to go to the gym for an hour. I don’t really WANT to do arms today and legs tomorrow. But if today I focus on walking to and from lunch, I’m already doing more for my body than I was doing. And if tomorrow, I take the stairs all day, it’s a huge leap from getting on the elevator every day. If I tackle it in small habits, its not so overwhelming. (Don’t ask me why I do not consider myself “worth” the one hour of exercise a day. That’s a whole different set of “ones.”)

One scrapbook layout a week. Ok…this seems like it shouldn’t even be here. But I have had the tendency over the last year to plan my layouts and not to execute. Now I have all these baby pictures and if do not focus on getting at least 52 layouts done this year, its going to be a disaster in my scraproom. Perhaps I’ll get started on ONE and will find inspiration for another while I’m at it. What is that Julia Cameron says? Something about how starting the process of creating is the hardest part? I think I remember that in her books. (Note to self…re-read Artists Way)

One non-maintenance cleaning thing a day. This seems odd…but I’m just so enamored with the success of our shower maintenance process. So, the dishes, laundry and, of course, the shower, are on regular schedules. They are already part of our daily processes. I want to add a cleaning thing to that each day. My theory being that I’ll spend a few moments each day cleaning something in order to save myself hours on my weekends. So today, I’m going to dust and tomorrow clean the toilets and the next day mop the kitchen floor. One thing, each day.

So, the beauty of this proposed process is that it feeds my need for goals and organization, but it has room for my life to develop more organically and less on a clock. It really makes of my own life what I’ve been trying to put into process with the Bug – goals, things we have to get accomplished each day, but not a rigid or uncompromising schedule. Its not about being tied to this hour or that hour. Its about accomplishing a little something each day – small steps.. It gives me the power to look at my calendar for tomorrow, note my appointments and then build my little tasks in here and there. And it also gives my life room for God to move. If I’m not so tied down to my big calendar, I’m not at one appointment looking toward the next, I can breath, take a look around, NOTICE my world.

Besides, as a Christian I am taught that God only reveals the NEXT step to me, not the entire journey. If I’m only focusesd on the next step, God has more room to move.

So, that’s it…This next year, I’m focusing on the power of ONE.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Back to Work!



The monkey shrunk again....

Two months today...

23 inches long...

12 pounds, 1 ounce...

Smiling all the time...

Kicking and reaching and loving new things...

Sleeping through the night...

Today he got his shots...

And he hated it, he cried, he fussed and he was just miserable...

And tomorrow I go back to work...

I'm excited...

And I'm dreading it...

And I feel bad that I have to leave him...

We just got into a groove with life here...

Regular time getting up, and going down and feeding and playing...

I was looking forward to those times...

The library, the playground, the playdates...

But I DO have to leave him...

Sigh...

What will I miss???

Will he miss me?

Will he even realize I'm not here?

Oh...new layout in the gallery - click the link under my pic...

Peace-y'all.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Same old thing, new version

So...

I'm a dork for Christmas music...

Sigh...

Yes...even BEFORE Thanksgiving...

I always buy a new selection or two each year...

Here are my faves THIS go 'round:

Sarah McLachlan's Wintersong - River is absolutely beautiful.

and...

James Taylor at Christmas - Jingle Bells is really great.

Both are a little bit unconventional and a little bit traditional and just yummy for the Holiday.

Enjoy, everyone!

Monday, December 04, 2006

Recipe Love

Found this little piece of recipe heaven...

Culinary Concoctions by Peabody

I'm in love...

Its cold in Charlotte today...

Well...

50 degrees...

Which, for this SoCal girl, is COLD...

I'm not used to it getting below 60...

Its a good day to stay inside, drink coffee and decorate...

Which is exactly what I'm planning on doing...

J says, "I WIN!"



Peace, ya'll...

Friday, December 01, 2006

List to start the lists....

Fed the baby – he slept until 6 WOOHOO!!!!

Had an orange cranberry scone…

Drinking my coffee with Eggnog creamer…

Reading my e-mail…

Watching a recorded episode of Naked Archeology…

And I have TONS to do…

I need to make a list...

Read my Scriptures…

Finish my Christmas decorating…

Bake 6 dozen cookies…

Finish my laundry…

CLEAN MY MESSY HOUSE!!!!!

Christmas shopping…

And, somehow, all between feedings…

Thank goodness for the carrier…

I think Jay will be in it a lot over the next few days…

(Don’t worry. He likes it!)

Being inspired by the (Red) campaign… http://www.joinred.com/news.asp

Which reminds me…TODAY is World AIDS Day…

Have gifts to wrap...

And I need shoes for work!!!

I leave you with this happy face:




Happy Day, everyone!