Gathering school supplies for School Bags for Presbyterian Disaster Assistance and Church World Service.
I’m following the prompts from this site.
Here were my intentions at the beginning of the year. Let me review how I’ve done, so far.
RESOLVE (or better yet – INTENTIONS)
My diet this month has been a DISASTER. It started with snacks, etc., during the football games, followed closely by Big Al’s birthday (and his request for a Birthday Cake that I bought and then ate too much of).
Then, my wonderful daughter-in-law made a King Cake that I shared with the Monday evening social group, but lots was left over, and I felt like I had to devour it.
Finally, to top it all off, yesterday was our Annual Congregational Meeting and Potluck at church. I don’t know about anyone else, but I have NO WILLPOWER when I’m confronted with a potluck.
So I INTEND to crawl back on my lo-cal, lo-carb diet starting today. (I hope February will be better – as long as nobody invites me to a Mardi Gras Pancake dinner.)
I haven’t done any strength training yet this year, but again, I INTEND to. I HAVE added a weekly stretching class to my routine, so that’s something. It’s a shame that I don’t take advantage of the equipment that’s here at Franke Tobey Jones and available for me to use for free (or at least it’s included in my rent).
It’s January, so all I can do is lust over the pictures from last year, and dream of the day the soil will be warm enough to put in some tomatoes and squash and green beans.
I’ve also picked up Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, again, and I’m drooling over the thought that the Farmer’s Market may open in March, or for sure by April.
No travel is planned at this time, except vaguely to enjoy our trip to see the grandchildren in May. We are traveling more around Western Washington, though (no new places, unfortunately) because of some of my responsibilities with Presbytery. We almost got to Pacific Beach after a Presbytery meeting, but we both had commitments for the next day, so we nixed that at the last minute.
I’ve done a decent job keeping up with Headspace. In fact, if you are a regular reader of this blog you know that I spent all of January on The Search for Mindfulness. I hope you enjoyed some of my posts and pictures, and, maybe, were inspired to give meditation a try.
I haven’t been as regular with Tai Chi, unfortunately. I still make it to class at least once a week, but my church meetings seem to fall on Thursdays and that’s when one of my classes is. I am trying to schedule around it, though.
That’s where I am and what I’ve been doing for the past month. I hope I keep up with you better in February.
To attain peace, what one has to do is to seek that rhythm which is in the depth of our being. It is just like the sea: the surface of the sea is ever moving; the depth of the sea is still. And so it is with our life. If our life is thrown into the sea of activity, it is on the surface. We still live in the profound depths, in that peace. – Hazrat Inayat Khan
The only ones who can bring peace to the world are those who have found peace within themselves, “the peace which passes understanding” proclaimed by Jesus who also said “The Kingdom of God is within you” and “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.”
…practicing stillness gets us deeper and deeper into who we really are, beyond ego, beyond personality, beyond biography, beyond senses, beyond thoughts, beyond feelings…It’s definitely worth the effort to reach deep into this miraculous, mysterious and marvelous realm day after day, even moment after moment, breath after breath.
For the sake of my relatives and friends
I will say, “Peace be within you.”
For the sake of the house of the LORD our God,
I will seek your good.
When we persevere with the help of a gentle discipline, we slowly come to hear the still, small voice and to feel the delicate breeze, and so to come to know the presence of Love. — Henri Nouwen
Praise the Lord, sun and moon;
praise the Lord, all you shining stars!
Praise the Lord, you highest heavens,
and you waters above the heavens!
The soul is like a wild animal—tough, resilient, savvy, self-sufficient and yet exceedingly shy. If we want to see a wild animal, the last thing we should do is to go crashing through the woods, shouting for the creature to come out. But if we are willing to walk quietly into the woods and sit silently for an hour or two at the base of a tree, the creature we are waiting for may well emerge, and out of the corner of an eye we will catch a glimpse of the precious wildness we seek. – Parker Palmer
It’s worth it! It might be difficult, challenging, uncomfortable, even painful at times but … it’s worth it. Going deep into your mind, heart, body and soul requires courage and commitment. But it’s worth it. Not only for yourself, but for everyone, for everyone you meet, for everyone else too. For humans. For animals. For plants. For rocks. For oceans. For clouds. For stars in galaxies millions of light years away.
Let us accept the invitation,
from the Stillness,
taste its exquisite sweetness,
and heed its silent instruction.
— Paul Brunton in Perspectives
You who live in the shelter of the Most High,
who abide in the shadow of the Almighty,
will say to the LORD, “My refuge and my fortress;
my God, in whom I trust.”
Mindful living is an art. You do not have to be a monk or live in a monastery to practice mindfulness. You can practice anytime. – Thich Nhat Hanh
I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. – Henry David Thoreau
My heart is steadfast, O God,
my heart is steadfast.
I will sing and make melody.
Awake, my soul!
Awake, O harp and lyre!
I will awake the dawn.
I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples;
I will sing praises to you among the nations.
For your steadfast love is as high as the heavens;
your faithfulness extends to the clouds.
There’s one thing about living here in the Pacific Northwest, we have some of the MOST wonderful cloudscapes imaginable. My heart rises up with gratitude and praise in the presence of such magnificence.