Monthly Archives: October 2012

Simple Joys

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This is my first year to buy a cinnamon broom.  It has filled our home with its sweet, spicy scent.

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working out your passions

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The other night I had the privilege to sit in on a group discussion with some young adults.  Our discussion centered on this question.

What is something you’re willing to work for in life? (What is something that when you do it, it doesn’t feel like work?  Or even if it does feel like “work”, you have the passion and excitement for the end result.)

Passions for photography, cooking, running, music.  Passion to cultivate and pursue healthy relationships.  Passion to know God on a deep and personal level.

What these young adults shared blew my mind, but I was a bit jealous too.

In my late teens and early twenties, I had no sense of direction.  I didn’t feel there was one big dream or passion controlling my actions or pursuits.  School didn’t work out for me.  I fell into a bunch of different jobs, all of which were great, but none of which inspired a career.

I lived.  I worked my job.  I enjoyed great friends.  I went through the normal ups and downs of life.

It’s only been in the last couple of years that I finally feel like I’ve come into my own.  I’ve finally developed a personal sense of style.  I’ve finally decided what I want to be when I grow up.  I’m finally happy in my own skin.

I think of the young people in my life; some are flailing like I did and some are on a direct path to fulfill their dreams.

To those who are flailing: Try something new every day.  Talk to others about their dreams.  Cultivate curiosity in the world around you.  Pray for direction and guidance.  Ask others what strengths they see in you.  Take a career assessment test.  Take a personality assessment test.   Fail at something.  Seek. Try. Dream.

To those on their path:  Work hard, from the bottom up.  Don’t let anyone deter or distract you from where you want to go.  Learn and take in all you can, recognizing that you can always learn more.  Find a mentor.  Pray for direction and guidance.  Dream bigger than you already have.

But remember, life is a funny thing.  When you hit a milestone (be it age or accomplishment) and look back, the journey will probably be nothing you expected.

What I’m NOT Reading

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How do your reading habits go?  All in all the time?  Or, like me, in spurts where at times the words can’t seem to come fast enough and then other times, its torture to get through a few simple pages?  Right now, I’m stuck and can’t seem to get past the first 50 or 60 pages of any book.

I started “The Odds” by Stewart O’Nan awhile ago.  About a couple whose marriage is ending, and they are taking one last hurrah together, he hopeful, she appeasing.  Their communication is awful and both are keeping big secrets from each other.  They both bugged me.  Each page was a struggle for me, and I realized I didn’t care what happened.  I put it down and haven’t picked it up again.

“Love Lucy” by Lucille Ball.  I loved the preface written by her daughter, Lucie Arnaz, how they found the book and what it meant to her and family to have Lucy’s perspective.  I did start the book and have gone from her birth through early adulthood.  I think once I’m out of my slump, I’ll be able to finish this quickly.

“The Casual Vacancy” by JK Rowling. (I’m about a chapter and a half in.)  I’m not crazy about some of her language (she’s on par with Stephen King for using the F word), and I feel like I’m going to need a graph or flow chart to keep up with all the characters.  I will finish this book, but when?

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After attending the Southern Festival of Books last weekend, I have a long list of books to pick up and read.  The couple I’m most excited about are:

Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn

A Hundred Flowers – Gail Tuskiyama

The Great Unexpected – Sharon Creech

17 years

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This picture is on the bulletin board above my desk, my Granny Jo and I walking hand in hand.

She’s been haunting my thoughts lately.

Taking pictures of every holiday meal.

Giving shopping bags full of paperbacks to my dad every time we visited.

Being one of two people I’ve ever met who watched professional bowling on TV.

Always having Baby Ruth candy bars in her fridge.

But the haunting isn’t as much in how I miss her, but in all the things she’s missed.

She missed my big mistakes, but she has also missed my successes and joys.

She was spared having to watch the pain from my first marriage and subsequent divorce.

But she missed the restoration and joy that has come from finding my soul mate.

She saw me floundering with school and jobs in my early twenties,

But now has missed the excitement from finding a calling.

She met a few of my friends along the way,

But has missed meeting the women who have helped to shape me into who I am today.

She only ever knew me living in my parents’ home.

She has missed me moving 2000 miles away to establish a home of my own.

I looked it up the other day and realized it has been 17 years since we lost her.  17 years of tears and laughter we didn’t get to share.  17 pictures of Christmas Eve dinners she didn’t get to take.  17 boxes of chocolate covered cherries that she both loved and hated to receive.

The haunting thoughts are welcomed, dear Granny.  It helps me to remember the love and strength and joy you gave so generously to my life.

And I promise, pictures will be taken of all holiday meals.

Exploring the Blogosphere

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For the first time in my life I wanted to lose. I wanted to be a loser.
Sammy Adebiyi – Losers

From the way her eyes widened, I knew that she knew she’d done what her sister called a Big Bad.
Allure.com – Jennifer Weiner – The F Word

I have a whole wall of books written by fine people, and their words are beautiful, but none are like this book.
Thorns and Gold – One Book

What works in fear is to say I am afraid. I don’t mean this to tempt you to play the victim. I mean this to say tell the truth. Always.  Storyline – Donald Miller – In Life, Move Through the Fear Rather Than Around It

Literally THE funniest thing you’ll read today, maybe ever.
HaHas for HooHas – The fart that (almost) altered my destiny

I love the idea behind – The Giving Keys

A little perspective.