As a writer-wanna-be, I enjoy reading blog articles and recently read a posting by Jennifer Connolly who writes the blog “A Well Styled Life” where she shares daily inspirations and style tips. In the posting titled Be Brave, she shares that she decided to not make New Year’s resolutions this year but to do something different which was to choose a Word of the Year.
She writes “Your word allows you to live it with intention. It inspires you to learn throughout the year. It’s not a “should” like resolutions, it’s something that “is”. It’s incorporated into your thoughts and actions. When you choose a word that authentically speaks to you, it has the ability to transform your thinking and actions.” (To read more about her Word of the Year, please go to http://www.awellstyledlife.com/word-of-the-year-intentions-new-year-resolutions/#more-1666)
I have given some thought as to what my Word of the Year could be…… a word that could change my thinking….. my actions….. what would be a word that would help define me and make my life richer.
As I have been reflecting on this, I have also been thinking a lot about my mother who died in 2004. My mother was a woman who was very complex and thus, she had many sides to her—one being that she was a woman who loved to find ways to celebrate life.
I have written in a previous post how my mother would love to go to Tiki Bars when she and my father were at events and have a glass of wine with him. She loved to go to places were there would be music and a piano playing. She enjoyed family celebrations and having nice dinners and using her china.
She tried to also create fun. One year Chris was going to visit my parents in their cabin in Dahlonega and he was going to miss his school fair. So, she created a fair for him complete with fishing for items. When I was an adult, we would go to the Burdine’s Tea Room in Miami for lunch and have a Bloody Mary and giggle over silly things.
One of the last pictures I have of my mother was taken about 6 months before she died. She decided to move to a retirement community and at the closing, she brought plastic cups and champagne to celebrate this new change in her life. I know it was a painful time—my father had died 5 years earlier and she was leaving the big house she deeply loved but she knew this was something she needed to do. The picture (which I have included at the end of this post) shows her and the two staff members raising their plastic cups in a toast to her new life.
Since beginning my new life as a single person, I have tried to follow her example.
When I began the process of having my condo remodeled, I had a picture taken of me and John and Joseph Elliot, my contractors, with plastic cups and making a toast. As it was early morning, we had to use orange juice instead of champagne but the intent was the same! I also have pictures of me after I moved in and another picture of the first Thanksgiving by myself…once again raising a glass to toast the occasion.
But my celebrations are not just about or for me. I recently got my braces off after 16 months. Dr. Enoch and staff have been wonderful and I felt we needed to have a “party” to mark this special occasion, so I purchased a cake from Gabriel’s and had them write a big “Thank You” on the top of the cake which I brought to Dr. Enoch and his staff at my last routine appointment.
I have tried to incorporate celebrations with my grandchildren—my granddaughter helped me celebrate my birthday last May with a picnic at my pool and the Gentleman Caller with Smiling Eyes (GCSE) and I had a special just-for-her celebration for her birthday….. complete with a shopping trip and her own party at my condo.
And regarding the GCSE, on February 12, we went to Taco Mac for lunch where we celebrated our two year anniversary of meeting each other at an Atlanta Outdoor Club Social ….. at that very same Taco Mac.
So, it seems to me that my Word of the Year is….. Celebrate.
It is a word that ties me to my family and my friends….. it ties me to my past, present and future. My goal is to consciously look for ways this year to honor and celebrate the joys of my ordinary life….. to not let them just slide by and get lost in the day-to-day routine of living life but instead….. to see with fresh eyes all the small bits of joy in my life and to celebrate them.
Celebrate….. these 9 little letters form a big word that says so much.
What do you want your Word of the Year be?
Anne Filer (in yellow) toasting her new life/ jfh and John and Joseph Elliot-January 2010/ jfh in new condo-March 2010/ jfh- Thanksgiving 2011/ Year Anniversary Celebration at Taco Mac-Feb 2015