I love the first day and last day of every year. On the first day, I pray, ponder, and formulate goals and game plans for the next year. On the last day, I pray, ponder, and reflect on the past year. I’m able to process what I’ve learned, and what I’ve done. Without those two quiet days of reflection, I feel out of sorts.
1. God answers prayers in amazing ways. You may end up praying for years for something. You may not know exactly what you’re praying for, and you may have absolutely no idea how the thing you’re praying about can happen. But God will work things for the good of those who love Him and have been called according to His purpose. I’ve been blown away by big and small answered prayers this year.
2. I have entirely too much stuff. When we moved into our new home last winter and spring, I carried load after load of our belongings to our new home. I realize moving a household requires many, many, many boxes. But when I look at our filled closets and basement, I know we have too many things. I’m on a mission to simplify and purge in 2013.
3. Life without computers is pretty dandy. Don’t get me wrong. I love blogging – and Facebook and Pinterest and e-mailing. But when I went on vacation this past summer and didn’t use a computer for an entire week, I felt like a new person. Since my technology-free trip, I’ve built in at least one day a week to stay off the computer.
4. Children grow up so unbelievably fast. Parents always told me that when my children were newborns. And I believed them. I just didn’t comprehend that entire years would fly by in the blink of an eye. My “babies” are now full-on children. I look at them and can’t believe how big they’ve grown.
5. I will always miss certain special people. Whether I’ve lost a loved one in death or just a very long distance move, there are certain people who remain in my heart. And when I can’t see or talk to them, I miss them terribly. There’s an empty longing only they can fill.
6. Sleep is overrated. I’ve finally fully embraced the fact that I’m a night owl. Because of this, I realize my greatest productivity happens when everyone in my family goes to bed. I have had some super late nights in the past year, but I’ve gotten so much done that my tiredness is worth it. For the record, I would be happy to sleep in to catch up on my sleep … but two children and an early rising husband typically prevent that from happening.
7. I am so out of the loop. I have no smart phone, no tablet, no e-reader. I realize that most people have at least one of those pieces of technology now. The funny thing is I’m so content with my pay-as-you-go cell phone, landline, and laptop. All three fit our budget perfectly, and I love feeling like I’m not tethered to technology. (Check out No. 3.) Taking a slow, simple approach to life and technology suits me.
8. Community is essential for bloggers. For the first two and a half years of blogging, I was content to be a Lone Ranger Blogger. Then I went to Allume. My perspective and approach to blogging has changed – particularly after gleaning so much from the Positively Real Media Group.
9. I am not a Green Nazi. My green approach is so relaxed, that it really doesn’t feel strange or stringent to me. I love how freeing grace is, and know it can be applied to healthy and environmental approaches to life. Life is too short to live legalistically, friends.
10. I like blogging! Really, I do! And I like eBooks. I have learned so much about traditional publishing in the past year and have finally released my desire to pursue it like I once did. It has been so freeing to embrace the path of blogging and eBooks. This circles back to my answered prayers – I’m thankful the Lord has been leading my writing path over the past twenty years. Each and every step (from magazine to newspaper to traditional book to blog to eBook) has been very fulfilling.
What have YOU learned in 2012?