Sunday, January 06, 2008

Looking Forward-2008

I start this post and I take a deep breath. This year holds so much in it. I read last year's new year post, and I try to think about what has changed. My many blessings are for the most part still in place. My Dad is healthy, we have the luxury to live a sustainable lifestlye in our community, and I have a wonderful family. I've lost a dog, added a job, and let's face it, a few of those lost pounds back. Well, nothing stays the same.

2008 is going to be back to basics for me. Someday Gardens took a lot of time last year, and it's bound to take even more this year. My workload with my paid job has doubled, and it's going to be a rather big year with lots of responsibilities there. If I weren't so passionate about interfaith volunteer caregiving, I would quit, and find a way to do without that income. As it stands, I feel called to continue my work. Somehow though, I need to be able to balance those responsibilities with the other things that matter.

I want to get back to cooking more often. Yes, there's convenience food out there that's organic, but with all of the extra packaging, expense and the added fat and calories, there are lots of drawbacks there. It will still be around as an occasional fall-back, but cooking has to take priority again.

I want to spend more time just doing little things with the kids--reading, playing, gardening, hiking, but giving them my full attention. Bird will start school this year, and it's going to be such a huge change. I want to give her my time while I still have so much more with her, and make sure I take advantage of the time I'll have with Sprout this summer. Public school is as hard as we thought it would be, and if I want to continue to have them hold our values dear, I need to exemplify that and be there with them to drive it home.

With the extra income from my second job, our budget got a little loose. Everyone gets one new outfit a season, tops. Material accumulation needs to get checked. We cut the kids off from their occasional new toy in early Fall, and it made their holiday gifts a lot more exciting. I want to stick with that this year. We need to cut back on eating out and coffee out and focus on saving up for our Someday.

I have to take time for me too, but healthy time. Knitting, reading, gardening, have all fallen by the wayside as I find myself stressed out with work-related tasks. With the elections coming up, I know I'll want to get involved with politics again, and I want to make time for that. I did get a lot of canning done in '07, but I hope to shoot for even more this year.

It's a lot, and it's rather nebulous, but I don't find it overwhelming. I think I'll be happier once I feel that I'm back on track. Right now I tend to just get overwhelmed with work and zonk out from things like relaxing with the kids, knitting, cooking. Yes, those things take time, but they're the things that I value, the things that make me happy, and I think I'll feel clearer once I refocus. I wish you and yours peace of mind and happiness in the year to come.

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