I recently read a poem by C.S. Lewis that goes like this: “If you want to get warm you must stand near the fire: if you want to be wet you must get into the water. If you want… More
For awhile now, I’ve been itching for a record player to play my favorite music on. I wanted to tangibly be connected with the songs, and I was overjoyed to unwrap one on Christmas morning.
My parents felt extremely nostalgic as they showed me how to properly use it and care for it, and I sat by the player and watched the records spin and stayed in a blissful trance.
Some other amazing and thoughtful gifts that I received:
-A locket with my initials engraved on the front
-The Illustrated version of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
-A collection of all the Harry Potter books in paperback
-A scarf from Italy
-A cross-stitching kit
-The new Pokemon game (thanks to my brother)
-Lush bath goodies
-A new watch
(and tons more)
I’ve been looking through all of these things lately and trying to use them and enjoy them. Sometimes after Christmas is over, I find that I forgot a lot of gifts or put them to the side. This year, I’m trying to use them all.
I decided that I was giving myself a gift this year: the will. I want to give myself the will to go out and do whatever it is that I feel like doing, or want to do, or should do. Life is too short, that is that realization that I have come to. Does that sound cheesy? Oh well. I don’t want to miss out on things because I was too lazy to seek it.
This brings me to my favorite quote from one of my favorite writers:
“If we wait until we’re
ready, we’ll be
waiting for the rest of our
The breeze, the blast
The wind, the cracks
The twigs, the ice
The freeze is nice.
An open road,
A heavy branch
Weighed down with snow
Across the ranch.
The icicles are intricate
Like lacy thoughts, they’re intimate
The glistening warms this heart of mine,
I dream often of winter time.
The one thing that I hope for myself in the New Year (besides the list that I previously posted about) is that I continue to evolve. I think about the past, about the versions of myself that I used to be at other times, and I am happy with where I am now. I’ve continued to grow and to not be afraid of where change might bring me.
It is such a beautiful thing to keep evolving, to never stop being curious about things.
I find that far too often, curiosity and creativity is squashed, but if you chase the things you wonder about, your life can be so much more.
And I don’t mean evolving in a Pokemon way, but, I suppose that works too. I think my plans to continue this pattern is to not have a pattern at all, but rather, to live spontaneously with a general path in mind. I have already started a few new ventures that I am excited to share very soon, and I am in love with the way they are shaping up.
What are your thoughts on change and growth?
-Tell yourself that everything will be ok (because it will)
-Be mindful about the words you use to others
-Take more chances
-Find more beauty in the world
-Breathe (and keep going)
-Go out and find the magic that is hidden in unknown places
-You are good enough, just keep doing what you love
Maybe some of these things are lessons to yourself for the New Year as well. I thought I would share what I jotted down last night when thinking about 2017. 2016 was tough, but those of us who are still here will need to make it through another year. Let’s start it off right, with an optimistic view and hopefully champagne. I wish anyone reading this a very wonderful year. Let’s enjoy it together.
“There are far, far better things ahead
than any we leave behind.”
C. S. Lewis
I got this beautiful book yesterday for Christmas and I cannot put it down! Lang Leav is one of my favorite modern poets, and this book is beautiful. It has even inspired me to try my hand at poetry. I’m not sure how good that is yet. Maybe some will be shared on here eventually.
I have been thinking a lot about inspiration lately. Creativity seems to shrink for me when there is a lot of outside distractions. The holidays obviously pose a threat.
But there is the hope of the future that keeps me going. Winter is my favorite season, and even though the holidays have passed and our lives need to continue without gifts and lights, we can continue to enjoy the rest of this season. There is so much beauty and quiet in the environment around me now that the snow has settled and the trees are bare.
I am very much loving this in-between time, this lull that exists in the middle of Christmas and the new year. It feels insulating, like we still have a little bit of life to live this year before we start new. I love that feeling, and I am so happy to wrap myself up in it like a blanket.
Shirt- American Eagle
Boots- Old Navy
A little side note, I have a lot of plans for the new year! I am starting a story very soon and I am overjoyed to finally be rewriting it. I’ll also be starting a nature journal. I’d like to post some of that on here. I might fool around with some video content as well which might show me gathering some things for the journal. Let me know if you have any good ideas in regards to that!
This year, Christmas is involving a lot of family members. We have people coming from across the country to celebrate and join us. I wanted to put together a really beautiful setup that would reflect the whimsical nature of our decor with the woodland scenery where we live. We accomplished this with a fresh garland put down the center of the table and then adding lots of wood elements. The pines are my favorite type of tree, so we have lots of pinecones and little evergreen elements sprinkled around.
Last night, as I was Christmas shopping at the mall on December 23rd (like a crazy person) I was overwhelmed by the commotion and crowds and laughter and yelling. But there was a moment when I looked around at all of us there inside of the mall and realized that each person was individually part of Christmas, all of them taking part of Christmas shopping and existing there with the rest of us, but they were inside of their own world. That was what I wanted to portray this year, a separate world for each family celebrating, coexisting happily while they take part in traditions.
That was why we put a little pie dish cover (we didn’t have a bell jar) over a big slab of wood and filled it with a tiny winter world. We pulled out some fluff for snow and filled it with tiny trees and houses and lights. Even as we were enjoying our night, there was another little world on the table, reminding us that there can always be something separate and special about Christmas for each of us individually, another little place that we can go to where we can find joy amongst the chaos.
I was very happy to be working with fresh greens again like we did for Thanksgiving. My mom always knows where to get the best plants and florals for decorating. Believe it or not, this is only one of our tables. We have two others that are filled with people as well. All of it seems very messy and unpredictable and maybe even stressful, but it is also part of existing. There is beauty in the fact that we are making memories with one another, and we can choose how we handle those memories.
I wish anyone reading this a very Merry Christmas. I hope everyone’s holidays are filled with as much wrapping paper, with as much chaos, and just as much love.
The best thing to remember is that the whole rest of the world is taking time during this season to gather together for one reason or another. This is a special time, a time where our planet is glowing out into the atmosphere. We are lucky to be alive, and we are lucky to be connected with each other.
I think I’m also getting pretty lucky this year with a new record player.
Give someone you love a hug today, or tell them what they mean to you, or maybe even do the dishes. One of those things will get a good reaction. I’m looking forward to a few days off. Let’s enjoy them together.
“Sometimes you will never know
the value of a moment until it
becomes a memory.”
-Turn off electronics
Just do it!
I use a hot water bottle or a heated blanket. This completely relaxes me on a cold winter night.
-Turn on Christmas lights
This is the season of light. I truly believe that. When the sun won’t stay up in the sky as long, it’s great to get into the routine of turning on your (hundreds and hundreds of) Christmas lights.
There is something beautiful about lighting up an interior with little twinkles everywhere. I have lights up year-round, but there’s obviously way more right now.
I got these beautiful LED’s that look wonderful around minimal holiday decor.
-Catch up on TV shows
The nights are cold and the energy gets focused inside of the home. Because of this, sharing stories with families and friends by watching movies and TV shows is comforting and exciting. Some of my favorites right now are The Crown, Parks and Rec, and The Office. The warmth of being by the fire and drinking wine and hot chocolate with people you love is irreplaceable. It’s one of my favorite parts of the season.
I also MIGHT keep watching Pretty Little Liars since I have to recap before the last season.
-Scroll on Tumblr/Pinterest
This is where I break the electronics rule.
-Spend time in front of the fire
I suggest cuddling with a pet.
-Get ready for bed
This involves taking off my makeup and brushing my teeth, cleansing, moisturizing, etc. This can sometimes be the hardest time of the night for me. I often get so tired that I don’t feel like doing anything of these things and would rather just crawl to the bed.
Lately I have been using my Clarisonic to buff off any lasting makeup before bed. I think this is really effective at getting rid of dead skin as well, and I have an abundance of that with the chilly weather. The cleanser I’ve been using is so silky and smooth that my skin feels so fresh after. I follow up with a night cream.
I end all my nights snuggled up with extra blankets. There is a beautiful thing about staying warm in the middle of a freezing night. I just moved my bed next to my window, and I love waking up to beautiful snow on the ground. That tends to motivate me to get some sleep. The wintry morning awaits.
What is your night-time routine?