Wednesday, December 30, 2009

sparkling reflections …

123108 seated figure With the holidays and a new job, I haven’t had a chance to post here recently. I hope to do a proper post on Thursday after work.

In the meantime, I took a look at last year’s New Year’s post and thought there might be some things you might enjoy from it:

A small sample of thoughts from that post:

  • See the Divine in all things.
  • Be comfortable with the chaos.
  • Practice aparigraha/non-attachment - letting go, releasing, non-clinging, without fear of loss or change. "...the yogi makes his life as simple as possible and trains his mind not to feel the loss or the lack of anything. Then everything he really needs will come to him by itself at the proper time." (B.K.S. Iyengar) Also Matthew 6:25-34.
  • Worrying about tomorrow squanders the joy of today.
  • Don't give energy to anything that you don't want to manifest in your life.
  • Remember that the world sparkles and dances with the Light of the Divine. We all carry that Light within.
  • Have a sense of wonder! Be ready to be surprised.

2009 manifested some chaos in my life, with which I learned to live quite comfortably. I learned to let go, to not fear, to not worry or feel loss. To trust in the Divine and believe that I would land where I was supposed to land. I tried not to squander the day, but to manifest joy in each day fully, taking walks each morning, making new friends, spending time in pursuits that I wouldn’t have been able to do if I’d been working. I lived in joy, seeing the sparkle and dancing with the rhythm of each day. I went to Mexico with my family and loved it. I wondered and was surprised. I was in a peaceful, gentle place this past year, and very happy that I’d set the tone in that last blog post of 2009. I hope I continue to carry these lessons moving forward into the new year.


Sunday, December 20, 2009

Winter Solstice, New Beginnings

Winter_Solstice water

“ … I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.” Phil. 4: 11-12

“Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever.” ~ St. Francis De Sales

~ ~ ~

December 21st is the Winter Solstice. It is the shortest day and the longest night of the year here in the Western Hemisphere. From December 22nd until summer, the days slowly increase in length and in light, until the sun’s zenith on June 21st, the Summer Solstice.

Tomorrow is a special day to honor new beginnings and a point of change in the rhythms of nature.

Tomorrow is also the day that I start a new beginning: I start a new job tomorrow.

I’m very happy to be starting on this next part of my life journey. And yet, there is a part of me that is reluctant to let go of these gentle days, spinning on their own time. Yes, I want to work and earn my own way again, but I also want to be very careful not to lose the lessons and growth of the last nine months. This time has been wonderful, moving with the natural rhythms of each day, walking every morning, out in the fresh air and sunshine, saying hello to others out, too. There will be many things that I will miss as I begin to move to a new rhythm.

But it’s time to do so, to move forward in a new direction. I will meet new people, learn a new job, contribute the value of my experience and work. And getting a paycheck will be nice and will help me rebuild my savings account again, and provide greater ease for me financially. I’m looking forward … and I’m cherishing what has passed. I do pray that the gentle lessons are now part of my being and that I don’t return to previous unhealthy work patterns. I’ll find a walking route to take on lunch breaks so I can be out in the air and sunshine. I will remember to honor the sacred in each day and in each moment. I will be content and have a calm spirit.

I hope you all have a wonderful Winter Solstice day!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

A little bit of sparkle …

121209 manger

Growing up, I always looked forward to getting our Christmas tree and setting it up. We didn’t do much other holiday decor; the tree was magnificent on its own, sometimes with a train going round the base and among the pile of presents gathered there. At my Tio and Tia’s house, my Tio created magical little buildings by hand from cardboard with doors and windows, the windows covered with a type of glassine for sparkle, and cotton for snow. As a single parent, the tree my daughter and I set up glowed in gold and crystal with lots of little white lights. I loved those lights because they tinkled softly as they blinked on and off. With her on my lap and my arms wrapped around my precious daughter, we’d have all the other lights off and just gaze at the tree together in the quiet of Christmas … tink … tink … tink …

For holiday decorating, I still prefer simple displays, just a little bit of sparkle, enough to mark the season, but not so much as to distract me from the focus of Advent. I haven’t had a tree in years; I’m allergic to real ones and even a fake one is more work than I care to do, rearranging furniture, moving things around. Instead, I just do a few simple displays.

The first to go up at the beginning of Advent: the manger and my advent candles. The manger’s on the new etagere this year, with tiny lights to light it.  As always, the angel hanging above falls if nudged even a little. Christmas tradition.

120809 advent candles close-upInstead of an Advent wreath, I gather the appropriately colored candles (three purple, one rose, one white) and place them on an oval glass tray with a bit of greenery, some sparkly ribbon, beads, gold ornaments and crystal gems. (Photo is from the 2nd Sunday in Advent last week.)

Those are the two most important displays for me. Everything else is just for a bit of sparkle. Lights on the etagere, garland and lights on the staircase, a glass bowl of rocks and shells to which I’ve added some ornaments and beads.

A simple, peaceful Advent as I await the celebration of the birth of a Savior.

   120809 etagere lights120809 staircase garland

121209 beach display

120809 ornament bowl







Peace and goodness to you and yours.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Filled with Christmas Spirit!

I am so filled with Christmas spirit I can hardly stand myself! I have no decor up yet, no baking done, no presents wrapped - and I'm filled with happy, exciting Christmas spirit from head to toe! Christmas is truly in the heart. (All that other stuff is optional.)

I love Christmas, yes I do! I love Christmas, how 'bout you?

Do you love Christmas music? I love to listen to it, dancing joyfully in my living room.

Here’s my Pandora Christmas music station, if you’d like to have a listen:

I love to play my favorite carols and music on my piano, lost in an afternoon of happiness. When I was a girl, my family would all gather around the piano and sing. Oh, what joy it would be to hear my mother’s voice for real instead of just in my heart when I play now! One brother and I would take alternating parts for Good King Wenceslas. When we gather at his and my sister-in-law’s house nowadays for Christmas, I play the piano in their home while the rest of the crowd is gathered in the family room and kitchen, providing background music for the celebration.

Christmas Angel

Christmas is about celebration, the celebration of the Gift, and the love of the Divine for each of us. I feel that sense of celebration in every fiber of my being these days! Happy, joy-filled, dancing in my heart and in my feet, my fingers dancing across the keys of the piano, my voice lifted in song. I love Christmas!