Here’s to 2016! (Make Your  Own Toast)

 

“It is equally important to end things as well as you begin them,” my yoga teacher explains about mindfully finishing the poses of our class. This concept could be applied in many ways, I think to myself: our hellos and goodbyes, meals, encounters with friends. Taking time to finish a thought or activity before dashing off to the next one…

Whether this year was a fabulous one or not, (perhaps you’d like a “do-over”), as 2015 comes to a close, may we embrace its lessons, and prepare our souls to release the old and receive the new.

“Make your own toast,” a friend reminds me, as a life analogy for making good choices and creating a vision of what I want 2106 to bring.  “Or someone else will make it for you, maybe with soggy bread, or not the grain bread you like, or with the wrong toppings.”

So, here’s to 2016, and make the most delicious toast possible!

Cheers,

Tracy

2014 Word: Safari

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Celestial Gift, New Year’s Day

Is it too late to say Happy New Year in February? The first part of the year has flown by. Our family closes 2013 in a new country, having celebrated our first Christmas with a few tears of homesickness, but mostly joy and gratitude for our new lifestyle, friends, and adventures.

It’s summer here in sub-saharan Africa, as polar storms cover the U.S. with heavy snowfall. My mind recognizes the heat, but my body wants to go into winter hibernation. I feel fortunate, however, to have hot sun after a long rainy season, where villagers rarely had dry clothing, and heavy rainfall washed away the leaves, stones, and dirt used to fill potholes the size of bathtubs.

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The rains brought gorgeous, dense and verdant foliage, and in our “surprise” garden, (not knowing what former tenants planted), new flora and fauna bloom and delight us. And, recently, a migration of hundreds of white butterflies fluttered through the tree canopies in our back yard, tumbling in erratic flight patterns like white rose petals falling from the sky. I see movement in the bushes, too, sometimes…is that scampering shadow a mongoose or a huge monitor lizard? Africa constantly feeds our imaginations and keeps us guessing.

Like New Year’s, my birthday is always a time to stop and reflect about the past year, and what’s to come. I received a philosophical birthday wish last week from Dalton, who fills our car at the Engen Petrol station. He jubilantly wished me many more years ahead, and told me to remember, ” Life First.  Problems Later!”  I couldn’t agree more, Dalton. Thanks!

In little nooks and crannies of time since New Year’s, I’ve made it a priority to start going through a slowly accumulated pile of excerpts highlighted in books, articles torn out of magazines, and lists of podcasts, website references, and blogs to peruse. A few messages keep recurring:

  • re-educate yourself to listen and trust the inner-truths
  • follow your intuition, and if it’s really your intuition talking, (your idea or activity) it will lead to a feeling of greater aliveness and power
  • choose how you want your day to unfold, and where you put your energy (not on negativity and all things soul-draining)

I’d love to get up every day and set positive intentions. I suppose it’s like exercise: you just have to get into the habit. Are there days where your head hits the pillow and you wonder where the day went, and how you never found time to X-Y-Z?

Several blogs I enjoy have mentioned choosing a “word for the year.”  What is the word I want to represent 2014? Several words and phrases resonate: authentic. centered. letting go. permission to create. But I think my word for the year will be Safari, as it has connotations of exploring, forging new paths, and discovery.  Which word, image, or quote would you choose for your year?

A quote that speaks to me:

What in your life is calling you?
When all the noise is silenced,
the meetings adjourned,
the lists laid aside,
and the wild iris blooms by itself
in the dark forest,
what still pulls on your soul?

In the silence between your heartbeats
hides a summons.
Do you hear it?
Name it, if you must,
or leave it forever nameless,
but why pretend it is not there?
Source: “The Box”, Terma Collective

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Wishing you an amazing soul safari in 2014.

Cheers,

Starry

Clean Slate

Starry’s Journals: Filling Up the Pages

The start of a new year: Tabula Rasa, Clean Slate.  What will fill up the blank pages in 2013? The writer Zora Neale Hurston’s quote comes to mind, “there are years that ask questions and years that answer.”

This year, instead of committing to new years resolutions where I am competing with myself, trying to challenge and push myself and set impossible goals, I’m striving to be more of a human be-ing than a human do-ing, (which is not easy for my type-A personality). My soul seems to be whispering that it needs time for slowing down, and letting go; instilling peace, acceptance, wellness, and wholeness…A year to practice living in the present, with days that overflow with joy, playfulness, and laughter.

May your 2013  “blank pages” be filled with abundant happiness. Cheers!