It’s Friday! Oh Happy Day! It has been quite a while since I’ve written for my Oh Happy Day gratitude project. You may recall that I started as a way of making the TGIF statement my own — as a way of consciously incorporating gratitude in my life so that the TG wasn’t just a silly acronym. In my experience, there is no better cure for stress, worries or a case of the down-in-the-dumps than heaping dose of gratitude. The joy that comes from taking stock of the blessings you have right in front of you is powerful.
I learned that lesson from my 6-year-old this morning. Again.
We were walking into school and discussing the day. I couldn’t remember what extra activities he had on Friday. Was it art or music? Little Drummer Boy was quick to confirm art with this commentary…
“I love art. And PE. Because we get to play with hula hoops.”
[insert Mommy smile here]
“I can do magic with the hula hoop. Do you want to hear about it?”
Who in the world could resist hearing about magic with a hula hoop. From MY spectacular first grader. So, of course, I gave him a resounding “yes!”
Little Drummer Boy proceeded to explain. [You’ll be happy to learn that his first grade teacher confirms he is indeed a drummer boy. In math.] He told me how he could roll the hula hoop and make it come back to him. I asked in amazement if he had a magic command to make this happen. He said “no,” that he could just do it. There’s my little magician, all happy and full of expectation about the possibilities of hula hoops and magic on Friday.
I couldn’t help but compare his enthusiasm to my own begrudging thoughts when I first woke up this morning… Ugh. It’s time to get up. I’m so tired today. I’m just not excited about anything today. Sigh. And a plethora of other dumpster attitudes.
Today is Friday. When I think of LDB and his PE tricks, I’m reminded of the magic to be found in each day. In THIS day. This day is another gift with the privilege of three little hearts in my house. Baby Girl dressed in pigtails and her brother’s torn jeans and plaid shirt for “farm day.” Bug all aglow with jets flying toward “vegetable soup” day with saltines in hand. And Little Drummer Boy. With the hula hoops. This day is another gift with the privilege of doing something I really enjoy. And getting paid for it. It’s a day with the privilege of choosing my steps, big and small. Of setting my own schedule from my own little office in my own blessed world. It’s another day with the opportunity to let my best self shine. To do my own bit of magic. To live according to what matters to me. For Friday is TODAY. And at this moment, TODAY is the only day I have to live. The only day.
So, I think I’ll search down a hula hoop. And it’s magic.
Oh Happy Day!
It’s been a while. I wish I could say that my absence from the EJ world was intentional. I did actually take a planned sabbatical from the Plop! blog, but not so with EyeJunkie. Unfortunately. It was entirely accidental. Or sidestepping. Or maybe even robbery.
Rather than a more noble intentional break for deeper focus and refinement, I’m sad to say that the source of my posting fast falls more along the lines of relinquishment. It’s true. It’s a result of my own lack of attention, my own pushing aside of something I enjoy, my own crowding out. That’s why I’m tempted to call it robbery, and I’m the primary suspect.
You see, I really enjoy writing and journalling and all the chronicling of life through words that comes with it. So, why hasn’t it been part of my days for virtually all of this summer? It would be easy (and perhaps simple) to blame it on busy-ness, work stress, or even too much authentic life. But, that’s not it. That’s not genuine. The fact is I’ve relinquished it. I’ve let other priorities supersede my own, exchanging something that matters to me for the ever urgent and perpetually earth-shattering wants of others. I’ve robbed my own time and priorities and enjoyment and paid them in service to something other than mine.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m one of those folks who happens to think putting others first is a worthy endeavor. I happen to enjoy the “urgent” calling of “Mommy” and such. The “urgent” newspaper ad or umpteenth email or 37th corner dust bunny, not so much. When I see the cost of giving up something I’ve always enjoyed, something that helps me boost control and creativity in other areas, something that makes me better at the things I’m desperate to do better, THOSE urgencies just aren’t worth it.
I’ve been learning lessons. Again. It’s up to me and no one else to order my life in a way that matches with what brings me daily fulfillment and joy. I can leave it in the hands of “urgent” needs, but I inevitably come up short on the joy end. And the daily is worth striking a hard line with joy. I don’t want to wait for joy. I’m spoiled that way. I want it now. For, a life of joy is made up of small joyous moments too fleeting to relinquish.
So, I’m writing again.
Setting the tone for MY life is my responsibility and my privilege. No one can take it from me without my permission. And today’s answer is “no.”
Postage stamps have always fascinated me — often such intricate design in such a small thing. They are the quintessential design project… text requirements, size requirements, and the need to effectively honor, commemorate, communicate, highlight or showcase the specific theme eloquently in a mundane application. Cool stuff!
This summer, the US Postal Service released its Pioneers of American Industrial Design set featuring a collection of early modern product designs — icons which are now engraved in our culture. From the press release…
Faced with decreasing sales, manufacturers turned to industrial designers to give their products a modern look that would appeal to consumers. Characterized by horizontal lines and rounded, wind-resistant shapes, the new, streamlined looks differed completely from the decorative extravagance of the 1920s. They evoked a sense of speed and efficiency and projected the image of progress and affluence the public desired.
Nice. Evidence great design can be achieved in tiny spaces. And the opportunity to add beauty to simply opening an envelope. [Get your set here.]
Do you ever feel like the porcupine in a warm and fuzzy world? Me too 😉
I read in a biography of Walter Anderson, the Mississippi Gulf Coast artist/painter, that his mother required he and his siblings to spend some time every day drawing and writing. He seemed to credit that experience with keeping his vision clear — or at least keeping it truly his. When I talk to my 6-year-old about his school day in the afternoons, I find that he does the same. And I’m constantly amazed at how vibrant his imagination is at this stage in his life. Since an imagination is something that shouldn’t be wasted, I thought I would give it a try — digital age style.
I’m experimenting with my iPad Sketchbook Pro app, which could become a habit.
September 11, 2011
September has me thinking “Back to School” and I found these great alphabet products in my “love it” bookmarks. Inspiration emerges! Nothing makes a statement better than bold, black letters. (and who can resist the color of chip board? I can’t)