Down East 2013 ©
One more holiday to go! Then I can turn over a new leaf, try to get my weight back under control and get off the holiday treadmill of shopping and parties and red and green everything. My spanky is exhausted, and frankly, so am I.
On New Years Day, the whole gang, Celeste and Bud, Rita and Smitty, Betty and Pat, Dot and Tommy, Shirley, and Junior and me and Charlie have our traditional brunch at Celeste and Bud’s. It’s a low key affair, just good friends hanging out together, enjoying each other’s company: a great way to kick off the new year.
Then on to one of my favorite days of the year, January second. I wake up with that wonderful feeling of starting fresh, like I used to get as a kid after going to Confession. My goal for the day is to make a list of all the things I’m grateful for.
See, I keep a gratitude journal all year round, just like Oprah. Every day I write down at least five things I’m grateful for. You know, like I’m grateful for how pretty that cardinal looked on the bird feeder this morning, or that I didn’t have a second piece of peanut butter pie at the bean supper. But on January second, I make a big list. I work on it off and on all day. When I’m finished, I take that list, put it in an envelope, and write on the outside, “To be opened in case of an emergency. Love, Ida.”
Then I go into my craft room and tack it up on my bulletin board in place of last year’s list. I always read last year’s list to see how I’m doing on the gratitude barometer before retiring it to my gratitude file. I have lists going back about ten years, I think. That’s a lot of gratitude. Just seeing that envelope on my bulletin board perks me up. It’s comforting to know it’s there. If I’m running low on gratitude, I know I can go into the craft room, read my list, and top off the tank. That list is something nice I do myself.
I used to make (and break) lots of New Years resolutions: lose fifteen pounds, work out five times a week, only eat sweets on the weekend. (Yeah, right!) Now, I only make one. My niece Caitlin, who seems to have the inside track on things like this, says it’s more of an “intention” than a resolution. She says, “An intention is gentler. When you break a resolution, it’s done. But with an intention, you can lose sight of it, but that doesn’t mean it’s gone forever. All you have to do is refocus on it.” That works for me.
My intention for 2010 is to be a good friend to myself and others. That’s it. Now, I’m not talking about “working” on myself, my friendships, my relationship with my husband. I hear that from a lot of folks, especially people on television. Most of the time, they’re referring to digging deep and stirring up the muck, which in my opinion makes it impossible to see anything. I just don’t believe it’s supposed to be that hard.
To me, being a good friend means, well, showing up. I mean, bringing consistency, commitment and love to the table, for yourself and others. Depending on where you’re at, that may be harder than stirring things up, but it’s a heck of a lot more rewarding.
Thanks to all of you for showing up and reading my blog this year. My wish for you in 2010 is to have plenty of fun, friendship, and good times. Happy New Year, everyone!
That’s it for now. Catch you on the flip side!
(Listen to the podcast of Ida's column here. )