I am once again surprised that with all my regular posts and online sorts of chatting, I managed to neglect my faithful little blog at the end of the year. I don't know if this makes any sense, but I always feel a sense of sitting with a good friend when I come to write here. It's ready to listen, and the way I write and pause and read, it often gives me feedback in those second thoughts and revisions. So when I get too busy to get here to post, I feel a little like I've neglected a good friend. But like a truly good friend, there is no judgment, just a welcome page ready to listen again.
|the Gratitude Jar, with last year's Mandala puzzle|
|A nice, big pile of Grateful!|
On New Year's Eve afternoon of this past year, I first took a moment to be grateful that I had a very full jar to empty. With a nice cup of coffee and a few sugar plums, I emptied the jar and started reading back through my year. I had already been thinking about how I might want to commemorate this years worth of Gratitude, and while I was reading I was imagining mosaic collages and mini-origami projects. As I was pondering this, I picked up a slip that said "got to see Karen Crane!", which is a happy moment in itself as she, like my blog, is a good friend I don't see as often as I'd like, but when I do it's immediately comfortable and free of any guilt for our mutual absence. But I digress - another happy memory that came to me in thinking of Karen, an artist and Art Therapist among many other dazzling talents, was that of another visit she made when we made Mandalas. Nothing fancy, rather quickly done and that was that, but mine still hangs in my studio and I often doodle in a similar way when I need a momentary meditation. I immediately saw how I could capture the spirit of my year of Gratitude while enjoying a full meditation on each entry as I recorded them into a Gratitude Mandala. It also gave me the opportunity to sharpen some of my colored pencils, so I felt incredibly efficient as well as indulgent in spending a couple of hours writing in a growing circle.
|My 2015 Gratitude Mandala|
I see that my last post was just before I made my annual pilgrimage to Sandbridge Beach, so here are a few images of other events of the last quarter that also made the Gratitude Jar. I know I'm not listing everything, and perhaps that's another reason to be grateful! Here are a few:
|Ploughman's Lunch by Budy Finch Catering, on my pots!|
|A giant bucket of Gratitude|
|Me in the Sandbridge kitchen, with one of many glorious salads |
in the foreground. Picture by Laurie McCarriar.
|A benefit to mostly overcast mornings at the beach: |
incredible reflections of sunrise in the clouds.