Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Free Advice & Happy Holidays


I'm writing this on Christmas Eve Day and as always am amazed by what I've learned and what I cherish. 

This has been a year of transition for me and for the planet. It's an unsettled world and I think that makes it difficult to feel settled in every day life. Yesterday I came across somebody's advice about important things to do before you die and it got me thinking about my own advice.  

So here goes: here are the things I offer as helpful and important for a happy(ier) life. 

1. Never take the sky for granted. Look up and you are guaranteed to see changing sometimes gentle sometimes ferocious beauty. Guaranteed.




 2. Know what you appreciate. This is a new fence for our place in Provincetown. It has created an actual yard from a tiny plot of land. Every time I look at it I swoon. I can't say why, but I know the fence has made me happy.


3. Be on the lookout for your favorite colors and covet them. A scarf, a pillowcase, a window box: bring your colors into your life and let them soothe you.


4.  Time, place and circumstance determine when it's right to indulge guilt free and when it's best to be prudent. This is true of people as well as chocolate. 


5. Hold on to  people who matter and add festivity and support to their lives whenever you can. Send a card and decorate the envelope. Call more often when times are tough. Be a kind good person at every opportunity.


 6. Appreciate blessings and good fortune and recognize when you have it. 


7. Slush and tough sledding? Or simple beauty? This is the same principle as seaweed or starfish. You can't ignore the tough sledding and seaweed but there is always more. 


8. Loss happens. Longing hurts. Several years ago I thought my heart would never heal. Now I know that people and memories will always live on inside me. Seeing it this way has helped me immeasurably.


9. Things don't always need to be precise. Fog can illuminate and protect in ways that clarity cannot. 


10. Look to be astonished. Look and keep looking for anything that exalts and astonishes you.  Do you see the leopard in this photo? You have to believe there is a leopard to be seen, because there is. 

Tonight JB and I will share our table with good friends and tomorrow we will for the first time travel to our daughter's house for Christmas day. It will not be the Christmas we have had in past years and there will be new people at the table and changes in tradition and routine. But through it all we will share the day with four blessed much loved little children and I will see my Jessica secure and happy with her family and I will be grateful for JB in my life and I will look up at the sky and think about my new fence and …..  and….. and…..

Happy holidays, dear friends and visitors. Thanks for being on this ride with me.

love 
kj

23 comments:

  1. This is such a beautiful list it actually made me a little teary.

    Happy holidays to you and yours and wishes for a happy and healthy New Year.

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    1. Thank you and welcome, 8thday. I think we see things similarly and I see we have daughters we adore.

      Merry Christmas!
      Love
      kj

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  2. Such wonderful thoughts kj! Hope you and JB have a wonderful Christmas and an awesome 2014.

    Holiday blessings and Bear hugs!

    P.S.:

    #2. I always thought a fence was what you took when people insulted you.

    #3. Colours can be such hope-creators in peoples' lives.

    #7. Looks like our street right now.

    #8. Good Bear wisdom.

    #10. Can't see the Leopard, but I can see the Bear's head and paw sticking out from behind the left trunk of the tree.

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    1. Fab comments, mr bear :-)
      I take no a fence that you did not understand my fence

      The leopard is there to be found. I'm not aware of any bear, but you should know :-)

      I hope you enjoy your family and all the festivities

      Love
      kj

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  3. A perfect list, KJ! Have a wonderful Christmas! Here's to new traditions with loved ones. xox!!

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    1. Glad your day was hopefully zany and full, Pam

      Love
      kj

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  4. Thank you for the thoughts, especially #5. Take care and Merry Christmas.

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    1. I just read your blog and it sounds like a nice day. So glad

      Love
      kj

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  5. Thank you for this magical post and good advice.....
    And for your friendship!
    Have a wonderful time at your daughter's place. New traditions ;)
    We had Christmas dinner last night at my Brother's with my Mom and today Germain's children will come and we will celebrate with our kids here.
    LoveM

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    1. Thank you too, Marianne. You are a great friend

      We hada good day. We were a crowd. I love giving presents even more than getting them so lots of fun with little boys :-)

      Happy new year!

      Love
      kj

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  6. Thanks a lot for this beautiful and wise post. I will keep your good advice in mind!
    Jonathan Swift's advice is mine: Live all the days of your life.
    Enjoy Xmas, Karen!

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    1. Ah yes Wieneke. Love always xo

      Love
      kj

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  7. wonderful list. hope your day with jessica is divine. you are surrounded by love. suki

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    1. Suki, I hope you had cookies and chocolate :-)

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  8. Merry Christmas, my friend,
    Lovelovelove,
    Deb

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    1. Ditto likewise, my friend
      xoxo

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  9. I love free advice!

    Fences can make cozy places and it looks like yours does. It's beautiful. I'm sure you had a lovely day at Jess' and I think it's good when things change like this, when traditions shift.

    We are having a lovely time here, and I will see you soon

    Xoxomim

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    1. Mim, so glad for your sun filled lovely time and yes see you soon xoxo

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  10. Good advice for them willing to adapt to it.

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    1. Adapt is the key word, eh, mark? :-)

      Love
      kj

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  11. Lovely post.
    For some reason #8 is hitting particularly hard this year. Dunno...I see the leopard and funny but bears bear as well...

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  12. I loved the photo that went with number ten.

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  13. Lovely post... and thank you for reminding me to be grateful and happy...I am going to make something of 2014 and get out of the stagnation I have made of my home so I can come home and be refreshed just by being there instead of dragged down...

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