Didn’t see that coming did ya? Neither did I, and it all fell apart so gracefully. It’s was about a month ago when I began to feel a tug at my heart every time I walked by it, so I knew this was coming. It’s like God always gives me a heads up before anything big is going to happen, and I was pretty quick to follow suit this time.
I was asked to take on a project by my guys over at Zen Habits, and it was an overwhelming thought at first. They want me to assemble, pack up and mail 24 gift boxes for their Fearless Mastery program participants before the end of September. Our house is less than 1,000 square feet, but I’m a big believer in, ‘you have everything you need.’
The space was there, it was just being used as a coffee bar. I took a day and moved coffee paraphernalia piece by piece to it’s new location near the kitchen. How did I know this was divine intervention? Because it all fell together seamlessly, and it’s better than before.
I bought a candle. That’s nothing new, I know, but it’s taught me well so far.
I posted a picture of it on Facebook. Not surprising for my friends either, but that’s not why it was posted. It was to tag the local business owner who I purchased it from. She’s one of my people who feels like sunlight, and adds to my world. By her inspiration I changed the tagline of my Blog this year to ‘Never Settle. Don’t even think about it.’
To be inspired, surround yourself with inspiring people. Their energy alone feels light sunlight.
I’ve been eyeing these candles for a while. They’re like art, so the price feels more like an investment than buying a candle. My friend who owns the shop said, “Once the candle burns completely out, the artist will refill the bowl with another candle, and I could even choose a different scent.” That candlemaker/artist has no idea what she’s in for!
When I brought it home, the instructions said to let it burn all the way across the first time. I did and blew it out, but have lit is several times since, each time allowing it to burn to the edges of the wooden dough bowl. This morning, I forgot it was lit and it burned for hours. When I walked by, this is what I saw.
Most all of the wax melted and you can see the beauty of the wooden bowl. There’s something strangely satisfying having a flame sitting in wood, but not catching the wood on fire. This candle reminded me to get down to the raw beauty of it all, it helps to walk away, forget about it and let it burn.
I got a new phone. This may not seem earthshattering to you, but for me it’s a bold move. The phone I had was perfectly alright, and it’s served me well for years. My favorite part of that phone was the camera because it took pretty pictures, or so I thought.
The day I bought this new phone I wasn’t looking for a phone. I was online paying my internet bill, and saw an advertisement that might be helpful in my workplace. I called to ask a few questions about their phone service and the customer service rep told me about it. Before I realized it, she was asking about my phone, and offering up better options. Honestly, she had my attention with two words. Samsung Galaxy. Her name is Tamika, and she said, “Ms. Holmes. I’m not leaving until we find you a phone you’ll love.” She was true to her word, and spent 45 minutes going over every Galaxy option. She wanted to know what’s most important to me in a phone, and I told her, “The camera to capture moments.”
Two days later, the phone arrived.
It looked huge compared to the phone I was using, but it also looked thin and sleek. It didn’t seem to have many apps, but I didn’t know at first to swipe the screen up instead of to the left. It has five cameras instead on one, but I just wanted to point and shoot, so at first I thought maybe I made a mistake getting something so new and technologically savvy. I guess they are called a ‘smart phone’ for a reason, but I didn’t want it to be smarter than me. That’s when I pulled up YouTube and watched a few tutorials on how to use the phone before making a decision.
As the years flow by, it’s best to stay in that flow. Of course we long for the simple life of our youth, but when technology is involved, it’s not all that simple, but there’s good news! We can learn. To keep an open mind and heart in this day and age, and never stop learning. Don’t be afraid of new my darling. Find a YouTuber to show you how to use it.
It was a cloudy day, so there was no sunlight, but look at the difference! You can count every stitch of the bedspread in the second photo. Utilizing the limited amount of natural light, I found it interesting that it picked up every shadow. The old phone sorta whitewashed everything. Which photo speaks to you?
Embracing the new involves letting go of something old. I know people who miss the flip phone, but those phone were made for phone calls, which was how we stay connected back in the day. Technology is here to make life easier, but it looks hard to use. It’s really not when we’re willing to learn. My daughter says it looks like an iPhone, how dare she. 🙂
Thanks to Tamika educating me, it’s a keeper because I do love my new phone.
This title has been sitting in my draft folder since last October. I wasn’t sure what it was for then, but today it seems appropriate.
Being dated late October, I’m guessing it was about fall and the grand finale of the flowers bloom. This year I had some flower beds created in the front yard, so I can witness even more bloom. The front porch has quickly become one of my favorite places to be.
I’ve decided to take some time away from Blogging and enjoy the journey. There is a book or two that long to be written and my creative side wants to be let off the leash. Julia Cameron writes in The Sound of Paper, “We are too busy living a life, to have a life worth living.” It’s time to enjoy the here and now, but this site will remain in my absence. I didn’t want to leave you wondering.
Here’s the grand finale of memes. My darling, I hope that whatever you choose to do with this one beautiful life, you go all in.
I’m being drawn toward the draft folder, so I’ve dedicated the month of December to cleaning out drafts. If you see a random post that doesn’t quite go with the flow, you’ll know Barb finished a draft. 🙂
A full draft folder used to feel overwhelming. There are no stacks of paper piled up on my desk because it feels like clutter, but the draft folder felt like stacks of paper, so once it piled up, it was sorted through.
Some were trashed, but most were published. There were posts sitting in there for years, but that’s when the old rule that works in all areas of my life came into play. “If it hasn’t been used in a year, it’s probably not gonna be used.” December is a good month to declutter.
Think of drafts as stories waiting for their Writer to return. There are six drafts in my draft folder, but if you’re reading this, it went down to five.
I’ve felt it gnawing at me for a while, but this week it became crystal clear. I’m determined to keep the portions on my plate in balance, and there’s new opportunity just over the horizon.
It’s been challenging to keep my plate clean, because I’m a doer, but I want to give God plenty of room to move. There are times when we don’t see Him move in our lives, and wonder where He is. Even God needs room.
I’ve been thinking about the Taylor Swift documentary I watched earlier this year. There was this one thing she spoke about that jumped out at me, and it’s still on my mind.
In 2016, she took a year off.
Just disappeared from the public eye for one year.
To me, that sounds like freedom.
In a card for my birthday last October, my daughter wrote, ‘This is your year!’, and she’s right, but there’s so much more I want to experience, and accomplish. I hope she writes that in every birthday card from here on out.
After going through my archives, I thought I’d be rejuvenated about Blogging, but instead, there’s a relief in it. There’s no pressure to Blog everyday, or every week for that matter. Now I know, I went through them to be happily satisfied with what’s here, leading up to this day.
Thank you for walking alongside me on this path, but it’s time to step over to a new one. There’s so much freedom in letting go, especially with people, places and things you love. I wish for you to receive every bit of goodness God has in store. May you learn what it feels like in your bones, to be free.
I just logged off of work, to come over here, and finish this post. This is my happy place, but I tend to make work my first priority. I’m Finding That Balance, to prioritize the meaningful.
Going through my archived posts, was one of the best things I’ve ever done. A year ago, I deleted photos from media to free up memory. That worked, but it also left broken links in the published posts. My God knew that would bother me just enough to have to go in and fix it.
I started at the beginning, (2014) and read almost 500 posts.
At first it seemed overwhelming, and a lot of work, but at the end of 2018, I was pleased with what’s here. In 2017, I caught the first glimpse of the voice I have today, but it took another year to relax into it. I didn’t have to read many posts from last year or this year, because I found my voice, and am using it.
I saw how many times I almost quit Blogging.
I saw the struggles I’ve had with social media.
I saw so many moments within those archives, but I also saw gradual growth by prioritizing the meaningful.
Other Blogger’s posts I had shared were no longer active. Even if I decided not to Blog anymore, I’d leave this site here. The 30 day challenge took on a whole new meaning while reading 30 straight posts. Won’t do that again. 🙂
On another note, I’m two weeks into the self trust cultivator, and will stick with it two more weeks, and reassess after 30 days. I already see myself no longer putting things off for a more convenient time, or tomorrow.
My plate of life has open space which is new. As I ponder refilling it, it’s time to prioritize the meaningful.
Last November, I went to the lake near my home and sat down to just stare at the water. I knew there was too much on my plate, but had forgotten, I’m the one holding the spoon.
My daily life was full of unfulfilling acts. Life is designed to be fulfilling, but my actions were fulfilling a need in others, and draining me. It’s been a gradual process beginning in January.
I sat down at the lake craving calm. This stack of rocks was sitting to my right, and I wanted my life to be as Zen as this moment. I wondered where the rocks came from, but saw it as a divine appointment. They were sitting there, so I would see them. In the stillness, I heard three words, ‘Scrape your plate.’
I was raised in an era where I was responsible for everything I put on my plate. At dinner Mama would watch as we scooped out large portions of mashed potatoes, or took one too many slices of ham. She never forced us to eat everything she offered, but she expected us to eat what we took out.
Before leaving the table she’d say, “Clean your plate.”
She was never angry if I didn’t eat everything, but she wanted me to learn the value of her time. I learned to take out what I knew I could eat, and go back for seconds if still hungry, but I lost that lesson somewhere along the way. We control the spoon.
I’d help clear the table, and Mama would open the kitchen trashcan, point to it and say, ‘Scrape your plate’.
There’s a balance to life, but also a timing.
As soon as the new year began, I knew what needed to be scraped. Some people would be upset, and others disappointed, but I’d get through it. Anything I laid my hand to that wasn’t fulfilling got removed from the plate. By the end of June my plate was clean, except for my one job taking up adequate space.
And I haven’t picked up another spoon. Finding that space.
This dining room chair offered a spectacular view of the front yard. A warm breeze was blowing, and I noticed the Whirligig, with it’s one side spinning. It’s double-sided, but only one side of it spins. The other side stands still.
My daughter reminded me that the Whirligig fell over in the yard once, so it must be bent. I’ve tried fixing it, to help it spin to no avail, so today I took a more gentle approach, to observe.
I didn’t see anything majorly bent, but it was off balance.
I saw it as two sides of life. Sometimes it’s moving rapidly and spinning freely, and other times if feels as if nothing is happening, and it’s still. I studied one side, and the other, then noticed this difference. The side that spins freely, has some extra space.
Where one set of circles end, and another set begins, there’s a gap. I put some space between the circles on the non-spinning side by gently separating the ends. It began rocking back, and forth, like it could finally breathe and find it’s balance.
Putting space between our thoughts, creates pause between our actions. There’s a balance. If we move too quickly after the thought, it’s an impulsive move. If we keep putting it off, it can fall into procrastination, or soon be forgotten altogether.
I’m using the self trust cultivator to move more promptly with my thoughts. If it seems like a good idea, or something that can easily be accomplished, I do it and it becomes a part of the done list.
But I had to create space first. Up next, creating that space.
We’re slowly getting our life delivered to us, instead of going to public places. Bath and Body Works came in the mail, and my mail lady walked it up to my front door. (It wouldn’t fit in the mailbox) She does that with a lot of our packages, no matter the size.
She laughs when I squeal over the package.
Opening the box, I felt a nudge to give some away. It was just lotion, but it was my favorite lotion, and this scent has been retired. I’ve worn it for years, and it’s become my smell, but why would God be prompting me to give a bottle to my mail lady?
We don’t know each other very well, and I didn’t know if she would like something so girlie, but I was willing to take a chance on it.
I wrapped a bottle of the lotion in a note, placed it in the mailbox and went for a walk.
About halfway through my walk, I looked up to see the mail lady’s car coming down the road. She was beeping the horn to get my attention, and I walked over to her car. Her window was rolled down a bit, and looking inside, I could see she was rubbing her hands together. The smell of the lotion floated through the open window.
She was so excited! She thanked me and said, “I never buy myself girlie stuff like this!”
When God gives us more than enough, we can give it away. This feels different than giving something away I don’t use anymore. With it being out of the box new, it’s more like sharing.
Finishing my walk home I remembered, sharing is caring.