Sunday, December 29, 2013

New Years Revolutions…

The tradition of promising oneself to turn things around or “make better” in some way or other in the New Year has a success rate of accomplishment that’s not thrilling. I’ve read that the two most frequent topics are dieting and quitting smoking.

Professionally and personally, history repeats itself when we set goals that are not realistic – thereby setting ourselves up for a fall. So this year, instead of either shrugging it all off or embracing intention, I’m setting my sights on achievable tasks.

In the December 29, 2013 Toronto Star™ section identified as Insight & Books, an article entitled Moving On struck a chord with me. The five stories offered “five perspectives on saying goodbye”. Everyone every day is moving on from some place or situation to elsewhere; at sleep time we say “goodbye today” and hopefully reawaken with clarity.

Having survived an unexpected career change and then an employment fizzle within the past 6 months, I came into the Christmas Season feeling quavery. Even my proverbial sense of optimism wasn’t sunny – in fact, I felt absolutely humbuggy! Quieting myself to seek and ask for answers seemed inconclusive – then “whammo”!

Saying “goodbye” to the old and embracing the new is my one and only New Years Revolution.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Keeping in Touch…

Greetings by e-mail are the trend now, “snail mail” is seemingly phasing out; and Canada Post™ has just announced that much of its door-to-door delivery services will be discontinued.

Season’s Greetings in the Inbox symbolize that the recipient is held close in thought, if not proximity. Newsletters used to be trendy too, but too often the enthusiasm outweighed the news, or vice versa. I used to write an annual update in rhyme, but my rhyme isn’t poetic of late; so the exchange of communication is quiet.

This Christmas season I received a truly beautiful animated e-card, no message, just a signature. It made me wonder immediately “what’s up?” – These folks are upbeat and outward bound! My efforts to compose an e-mail felt stilted, nothing to say from this end either that they aren’t aware of. I’ve heard it said that when we look at a person we may see, behind that bright smile, eyes that are sad…

In this Yuletide season when we want to reach out and connect, we should make time and do it. Across the miles or across town, we may never know how much it means to the recipient when the Inbox dings or telephone rings – just you ‘n me keeping in touch!

Saturday, December 7, 2013

The First Noel….

Respectfully alluding to a historical event that is celebrated worldwide, I am thinking now of every parent celebrating “Baby’s First Christmas”. Commemorative baubles for the tree are treasured adornments that are carefully stored and unwrapped with emotion every year. Sometimes a history of tree-trimming evolves as children become able to take part, homespun or school-crafted decorations are often included – special contributions.

When I was growing up, Christmas Eve tree-trimming was begun by my Dad, and it was sometimes a frustrating event when he couldn’t arrange the lights symmetrically the first time, or didn’t test them first – with disappointing results. Eventually my brother, sister and I were allowed to start hanging decorations. It was important that each strand of tinsel be hung individually – sometimes a tedious method for youngsters who were agog with lights and promise! I sometimes wonder if my Dad actually re-arranged everything after we were asleep…

In more recent years I have embraced the habit of decorating my own tree – each year with a different colour theme. It’s fun and can be really economical if decorations and specially-selected accessories are acquired slowly and during Boxing week clear outs when Santa has gone back to the North Pole! If you’re entertaining family or friends for New Years, simply remove the tree-topper and replace it with a glittered top hat from the Dollar-store® outlet or Dollarama®. Three, five or seven tooting horns can be laid across the branches too – it’s really festive!

Whether this year is your first, one of many or a specially-inspired yuletide, celebrate with enthusiasm and sparkle. Everyone can find fulfillment, however small it may feel, in marking this special Season as if it is your First Noel.