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Giving thanks for - chilly mornings, communities of writers, pretty notebooks and journals, lovely fabric, candles, the glory of early morning darkness with stars shimmering to welcome the day.

Outside my window - the sun is coming up and it casts a rich, warm light on the wood rails of our deck. It seems to enhance the colors like a good photographer can do with photos. Oh I do love the crisp, chilly mornings of September. 

Clothing myself in - lightweight sweats and a long sleeve shirt recently purchased from Sam’s Club. I think I want to go back and buy a couple more in different colors. They are comfortable and warm without being too warm. Socks, because my house slippers keep making my feet stink. Oh bother. Keeping house - I glanced over the list of things I want to accomplish on Mondays and most of them are already done - all but the dusting and bathrooms. And I just don’t want to do those things!! I still want to hire professionals to come regularly and get that done. They can do some other things while there here too. :-)

I hope to finish getting one small area of the house that has been waiting patiently on me to unpack and put it away. The landing is where my computer is and where I hope to be doing a bit more work in the future.

Keeping it simple - After I had one intense pity party the other day, I have calmed down and understand some things about myself more clearly. I hope that this understanding will help me keep things simple. Mostly that means just taking one day at a time and realizing that all the things I want to write about are truly my life in progress. Knowing that defines my audience, my sources, and inspiration. What else is there? I need to keep in mind that in order to write a good life, I have to live a good life. Ultimately the audience is me, my family (mostly as legacy for when I am gone), and those who might want a glimpse into the life of a pretty typical family. That’s pretty simple, wouldn’t you agree?

To be fit and healthy - a little progress. Just simple choices. I do feel more confident and hopeful than in recent years about the one thing that could hinder my future health and currently affects my energy and endurance, which is of course my weight. Stay tuned... Pondering - What life might be like if my husband could actually retire and we could enjoy our days together. Even if it meant he retired from his current position and we worked a small business of some sort together...

Listening to - mostly trying to establish some sort of routine with the podcasts that follow. I really enjoy them and the number that I want to listen to are increasing so I want to be conscientious about fitting them in when I can.

Adding to the playlist - I believe I mentioned before that I was inspired by one of those podcasts to create a playlist for seasons and holidays, etc. I am exploring Spotify versus iTunes before I start putting too much effort into that project. In the meantime I’m just enjoying some new genres of music. We often forget how much we enjoy music when we are away from it for a while.

Reading - not much fiction. No wait, fiction not at all. I am working on assigning days of the week so I can read from a variety of collections and be okay with knowing I can’t read everything everyday. I suppose if I decided to take a complete hiatus from television I could do so much more reading. But how to convince my family to allow me the space to do this? I have difficulty reading while the tv is blasting in my ear. I don’t know if ear plugs would work, and honestly sometimes I’m just too tired in the evening to stay awake and read. 4:30 AM mornings are so important to me that I am willing to forgo the evening reading. For now. 

Watching - Harry Potter! It’s one of several marathons we do around here. It’s just the time of year this starts to naturally happen.

Loving the moments - after a spontaneous gathering of most of the family at our house the other night, my daughter texted me and told me that it was good for her soul, that having more family there was really… joyful. The past year or two we have struggled with the challenges of the chaos several extremely active toddlers/kids and a problematic relationship between one of our daughters and her husband brings to the table when we all gather. The dust is starting to settle a bit and we are taking our first gasps of oxygen and realizing just how much we have missed each other and our gatherings. I think we might be starting to tiptoe our way back into a new normal that will bring us all back together again. I hope so.

Planning for the week ahead - I just ordered my new planner for 2021. It’s never too soon to do that, right? I love the planner that I have used now for the past two years. So often I find one I love and get used to only to have the format changed completely or be discontinued. I grabbed this one for a third year (hopefully something doesn’t change unexpectedly) in a row.

I created a graphic to share my menu for the week with one of my groups. Maybe putting it in a pretty graphic form will increase the chances that these meals will actually be made… by me… here for our family. 

Words worth sharing - “It won’t always be this way.” Did I already say that last week? I think I might have. Well, in either case, it’s saving my life right now. I need the reminder that what is hard right now will not always be, so hold on, and what is good right now will also not always be (necessarily), so hold on loosely. 

A prayer for today

“Father, thank you for this day and whatever it may bring. 
In case I forget to tell you, I had a good time!
Please help me hear you; help me know I am hearing you.
May I please have the measure of peace, joy, and wisdom that is mine to have today?
No more, no less.”
Thank you

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