Monday, January 6, 2014

New Year, New Chapter

I love the start of new things ~ new books, new art journals, new decorating projects, new adventures, a new journey, and right now, a new year. I found myself in the last few weeks of 2013 greatly anticipating the arrival of 2014. I am ready for the new-ness. I'm ready for a fresh start. I'm ready to put some old stuff away ~ things that have been weighing me down, things that have made me feel stuck, things that have been getting me down. It feels like the past few years have been heavy years and I'm tired. I'm weary. In some aspects I've lost heart and hope. I'm ready to move on; ready to be refreshed; ready to have my heart and my hope restored; to have my attitude and my energy renewed. At some point in the past few weeks I made a decision to simply choose to make 2014 a different year, a better year. I don't know how. I don't have it all figured out. But I am determined. I have decided that it's just time for things to change. I am realistic and practical, I know that it won't happen just like that, with a blink of an eye or the snap of my fingers. It will take time and will probably be a slow process, but every journey begins with taking the first step, and this decision to choose is my first step.

This year I am making it a goal to bring more people into my journey, into my struggles, into my joys, into my life in general. That has been part of my struggle over the past few years, I managed my pain and my trials by retreating. A few years ago I discovered that I am really more of an introvert than an extrovert. My extroversion was more a survival mechanism than a part of my wiring, and just possibly I swung too far into seclusion as I discovered my introverted tendencies. What will bringing people into my journey look like? Again I don't have it all figured out, but there are a few steps I plan on taking: 1.) I'm going to test a spiritual direction group with a few other ladies and, 2.) I'm going to explore the collaboration of art/creativity and spiritual practices by doing a group or class at church and on my blog. That's all I've figured out so far.

Some of the creative adventures I've decided to embark on in 2014:

  • My word for 2014 is BE. Part of the change I want to see in the coming year has to do with both being myself and being very comfortable with that and with being my true self ~ the me who is shaped by her relationship with Christ. For me to "BE" means to live fully ~ fully dependent on God and fully living out of who I am. That means living more out of who I am than out of what I do. It's recognizing and believing that my "doing" flows out of my "being" and not the other way around. So in 2014 I want to focus more on being ~ being me. Once again this year I am participating in Ali Edwards One Little Word 2014 (OLW 2014) hoping that the prompts, challenges and structure will help me stay connected with my word through the year.
  • I am participating in The Documented Life Project (Doc Life) led by one of my favorite artists, Roben-Marie Smith, and a few other ladies. It is a creative altered planner project that I am "altering" to fit me and what I want to do this year. So I am following the groups challenges and adding in highlights from my week as well as incorporating my OLW 2014 into the project. I have altered an old dictionary for my project journal rather than the Moleskein planner that many in the group are using.
  • Another thing I wanted to try more of this year is collage so I am trying to make a collage a week and placing these in my Doc Life journal as well.
  • I will also keep an art journal in addition to my Doc Life journal for everyday art journaling.
Well, I think that's enough for the start of my year. It will, of course, include a continuation of my exploration of contemplative spiritual practices and Bible study! Below are some pictures of the projects I've started:

My Doc Life project journal
monthly tabs
weekly calendar pages

Collage week 1 

OLW 2014
There are links to The Documented Life Project and One Little Word 2014 in the sidebar on the right.

What do you plan to do in 2014?

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