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My Christmas Gift To Me

(From Christmas 2013)    PMS, a full moon, and Christmas aren’t a good combo. Even with a whole lot done, I felt incomplete and irritated at everything this past week. Not feeling the ho ho ho in the holiday tone. Here I had a beautiful baby, everything to be grateful for, and I felt resentful. What?stroller smile

I want to judge it and yet I can’t when it may be telling me something needs an adjustment.

I’ve been feeling more jazzed than ever to move ahead on my blog. Take the next step. I planned to use all the pictures I’d already taken, enjoy an afternoon or two of all out creativity and take more pictures. I’d have blog posts for days.

Then life happened to me. A ton of “do-this-befores“, baby interruptions, and regular chores. When I missed my dental cleaning appointment, I had a fit. I would not be writing all those blog posts I’d intended to. The timeliness of them had passed anyway. I still had no help with the baby. And all the “Making Big Blog Plans for 2014” posts was making me feel crappier.DSC02394 - Copy

By yesterday, 4 days until Christmas, I was saying, “I think I might need some time off.” Time to contemplate 2014, paint my fingernails, read a magazine, create time and brain space. Relax. Be. Breath.

I keep thinking of a scene in the Color Purple where Oprah’s character Sophia drives her mistress’s car to visit her children. She hasn’t seen them in a heartbreakingly long time. It could be the holiday season. Only when they get there, the woman freaks out. Sophia has to drive her away unable to spend time with her loved ones. It’s heart wrenching. And familiar. To be within reaching distance of the one thing that will make you happy and have to leave it.

closet shot

I desperately need creative time. I know I went and had me a baby and that is what it is. There are ways around this attention conflict. Expectation adjustments are up to me. Meeting my needs? Up to me. Letting things go that are standing right in my way? Up to me. Do your best, let go of the rest.

My present to myself will be to list out my responsibilities as if they were expenditures and overview my task budget. I may be spreading myself too thinly. And diluting my potential for greatness I feel capable of. I suspect I may just need my own permission to be great.

(And for a little Christmas Picture Prettiness, check out my final Christmas Decor Extravaganza post from last year.)

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Go Gently into Christmas

I am not that person putting up her Christmas tree on Thanksgiving. In fact, frankly I need it to be December before I can let Christmas music into my head via my ears. I believe in easing into Christmas.

I want the time to build the anticipation. Get the tree and light it. Then decorate. And enjoy it for several weeks before I strip it and ditch it’s crunchy lifeless body into the brush pile at the dump. I don’t want to be so sick of the tree or merriment that come December 26th, I’m done. I believe in savoring a little Christmas magic through to New Year’s Day.Go gently into Christmas on Shalavee.com

Yes, I used to be the gal who used Christmas as a way to torture myself with all that I was incompetent in. I could use the non-existent Christmas cookies and lack of money as a great reason to hate myself or the season. But I soon learned that making Christmas a bad thing was just unpleasant. And it wasn’t about me anyway. It was about the people who I loved and the charity of the season.

These days, I have become super proactive in certain areas such as creating and sending the Christmas cards out early, so that I can be leisurely about the creative Christmas stuff I enjoy. The tree and house decorating is no longer torturous because I take my time and do it for me. Same for the meal planning. Other people enjoy these creations but they are all my excuses to play.Go gently into Christmas on Shalavee.com

Any effort is enough effort. If we keep our sights on the joy of community and the delight of lights and comfort of family and home, we will get all the Christmas we need. We raise appreciative and grateful children when we model that behavior. And enough is truly a state of mind.

 

I am rounding up some former Christmas posts I feel are definitely worth rereading and will repost these evergreens throughout the rest of December. Hope you enjoy them again, or for the first time, and perhaps I’ll be jumping in to post a peek into my decorating as I go.

If you enjoyed what you read, please subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

The Subtleties of Shifts

Life’s best asset and worst downfall is that it takes its sweet time. That it is relentless in its expansive pardoning of our mistakes. Every day is a new day to start over seems like too much wiggle room for screw ups. But it also means that the daily monotony can lead to imperceptible shifts. Stuff that would pass you by unless you were wise enough to go looking for it. Or someone else pointed it out to you.

Developing your mindfulness is a way of gaining another eye on your life and yourself. Being able to hold on for a beat more and instead of launching into reaction, to take a look at yourself and what you are about to do and perhaps choose something else. This is shift.

And then there’s just the blindness we end up when we’ve got our eye so hard on a prize that we truly want but don’t believe we will ever have. And we totally disregard all the progress that we have made because winning means a goal met and not the stuff in between. All or nothing thinking plagues me still.The Subtleties of Shifts on Shalavee.com

Of recent, my computer had a behavior problem after its operating system got updated. And for a week now, I just assumed it ate my sticky notes, the little pretend post it notes on my desktop that hold some of the profound thoughts and understandings I have come across of recent. And now that they’ve been suddenly returned to my computer, I clearly see a shift that happened for me in the past six months.

And that shift was about valuing myself.

Here’s most of the quotes on my sticky notes.

I love and accept myself

I respect and honor myself

I can achieve anything I desire

I believe in myself

I deserve to be loved and respected by those around me

 

Even knowing that

you have the power

to change things

changes things. -Me-

The Subtleties of Shifts on Shalavee.com

 

Your task is not to seek for love,

but merely to seek and find

all the barriers within yourself

that you have built against it.

~ Rumi

You will be your own destiny and your own reason why.” -Me-

 

There are days I drop words of comfort on myself like falling leaves and remember that it is enough to be taken care of by myself.” ~ Brian Andreas

Fear is the cheapest room in the house. I would like to see you living in better conditions.” — Hafez–

I am struck by this shift in the value of myself. Was that what I was working on for all this time? Yes. Did I recognize how much I had begun to truly own that shift? No. The daily doing and expectations that we all subject ourselves to can truly bury the important stuff. If we aren’t giving ourselves the credit for the work we’re doing, it’ll feel like we’re standing still. If we keep raising the bar, we never see how much we’ve risen to meet it.

The Subtleties of Shifts on Shalavee.com

We are all moving, maybe at a slug’s pace, but moving all the same if we are doing the work we need to do to make this happen. The change in perceptions and the feelings we experience will take as long as they take to deliver us there. But in the end, we will arrive and, if our eyes are open, we’ll see we have endured the most amazing slow ride to get there.

Want to read more about Shifts?

Craving the Shift

The Shift : My Decision to Not Be Sucky

Awaiting the Shift from If to When

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest  too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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