Wild to think that 2021 only has a day left. The year has flown by at such a seemingly rapid pace my mind is still struggling to truly understand how it could have followed 2020, they seem so unrelated in some ways and yet 2021 was born completely of 2020.
Much of the day was spent wrapping up goals and tasks better done in 2021. Tomorrow will see the end of a year long goal, so pumped to put the checkmark next to it! Throughout the day my thoughts kept drifting back to random events throughout the past year while also thinking ahead to 2022.
I paused for a bit and went into my photos from this year. My mind is blown with all that we’ve done and all that’s happened in the past 12 months! How did we live that much life in the last year? Crazy!
Tomorrow I’ll see if I can talk the family into going through all of our pictures from 2021 together. There’s a bit of magic in going through the pictures from the past year. Each one gives the gift of memory, a moment frozen in time to go back to.
So much more of 2021 to unpack before it is gone, more planning for 2022 before it begins. I’m glad I started wrapping up 2021 today, there’s a lot more to it than I initially remembered!
For the second straight year we spend a night in the woods to wrap up the year. While it wasn’t quite as close to the last day of the year as it was last year there’s no question that we’ve started a bit of a tradition. Fingers crossed for keeping it up again in 365 days or so.
The nonstop snow, crazy wind, and freezing temperatures only made the camping all the more memorable. We had so many laughs all day and night long. There were a couple of times in the middle of the night when all three of us happened to wake up at about the same time and jump right back into conversation and laughs. Quite honestly, I don’t remember ever having so much fun packing up gear on a frigid morning. The entire time was a blast!
Spending time with my boys in the woods like this is amongst my very favorite activities in the entire world. This camping trip was another memorable experience I am very grateful for. We’ll keep laughing at the memories for years and years to come, especially moments like when we attempted to make popcorn over the fire (spoiler alert, it didn’t go so well). I am thankful they share the passion for the outdoors and can find the beauty and meaning in being out in nature.
Busy day filled with excitement. We were largely going in different directions all day long, but everything just kind of came together for an epic end to the day.
After an awesome yoga session with Becky I sat on the couch and turned on the TV – something which doesn’t happen to often. As luck would have it Dominic also sat on the couch and put some pictures on our laptop. With him sitting there I loaded up an old favorite comedy from the early 2000’s. Gavin eventually joined us to catch the back half.
We sat on the couch and laughed our butts off, it was awesome! Spending time together laughing at jokes we’re sure to repeat over and over again was a great way to wrap up the day. We may not have had a ton of time together today, but the time we had was greatly enjoyed.
I’ve often written about nudges, those little inspirations that seemingly come from out of nowhere to lightly push or direct me towards a specific action or thought process. Today I felt one, went right along with it, and was rewarded greatly. They seem to appear most often when I’m about to avoid something and head in a slightly different direction. The nudge is a fantastic and gentle course correct which seems to help me better live into the person I should be. Without detail, the nudge was spot on again today and I’m glad I heeded it.
When I started thinking about the nudge today I kept thinking that it most likely came from the steady diet of books I’ve been reading recently. In many ways it was drawn up right out a couple of their playbooks. This was a very effective reminder of how important it is for me to keep a healthy mental diet. I am more likely to act in accordance with what I’ve been mentally consuming, it is critical I devour the right books.
Our drive back home today was amongst the most peaceful of all time. Each of us were pretty chill and off in our own thoughts (or devices) and it was a stark contrast to the activities of the past weekend. Having time to largely enjoy the sound of silence was a great way to chill after an excellent night of Christmas festivities with a very large family.
Before hitting the road we spent some extra time at Ken & Mary’s. No agenda, no specific reason, just some bonus conversation time. We had a great time just talking about anything and everything as we all chilled and relaxed. The bonus conversation was a wonderful way to wrap up the holiday season with their family.
Tonight we’re chilling on the couch, just the four of us, watching A Christmas Story and joking around. We’re sharing stories, laughing, and having a blast together. Frozen food for dinner, popcorn as a snack, and a little hot chocolate – exactly what the doctor ordered 😉 This is the best way I could imagine finishing up Christmas night.
LOL – I know, I sound like a broken record. Same type of blog multiple times in the past week. What can I say, I know what I like? 😁👍
Today becky and I got a great hike in on some snowy trails. In addition to the usual beauty of the woods we were treated to various animal tracks in the snow. Deer, rabbits, and squirrel trails were everywhere. As we went deeper into the wood we found some coyote tracks that were fresh from yesterday. Further along the path we found tracks that were much fresher and and were atop the coyote. Turns out they were bobcat tracks, how cool is that?
After our hike I went out with Ken and the kids for some four wheeler riding on the trails. The rain started just as we headed out and we spent the next hour or so riding in the woods in the rain. It was wild! Thanks to some rainproof clothes I stayed dry and warm while having fun watching the kids drive each other around on sleds through the trail.
Nothing like a long walk in the woods, especially in the sun on an unseasonably warm day. This afternoon we had the opportunity to hit some of Ken and Mary’s trails. While the boys zoomed through the woods on four wheelers with their cousins we wandered the trails with no set destination. What a wonderfully relaxing way to start sometime off!
Before we left town I paused and struggled to decide which book to bring along with. I kept leaning towards some of the more dense reading I’ve been doing, but I knew I was forcing it rather than going with my gut. At the last second I happened to notice If It Bleeds by Stephen King. In an instant it was packed up in the car.
My brain needed to get some space and relax. Reading it has felt like the right decision for sure. I was quickly rewarded more than I’d imagined possible. Imagine my surprise when I came across a paragraph which helped offer advice to a challenge I’d had. Without getting into too detail the paragraph was more specific and detailed than I could ever have thought possible. It was truly uncanny. Leave it to Stephen King to surprise me yet again!
A while back I started using the WeCroak app to get several quotes throughout the day to remind me to be present and alive in this short time I am blessed to have. When I saw a quote that really hit home for me I took a screenshot and saved to go back to for future reference. Once in a while, and more often recently, I go back through the album of those saved quotes and review them.
Through reading and rereading the quotes I’m starting to get the at a deeper level than I initially did. The more I go back to them the more I catch myself recalling them during my waking hours without the need of a reminder. They keep helping me hone my thoughts and values while reminding me to stay present.
Such a simple practice, taking a screen shot of great quotes. Maybe next year I’ll start writing them so I have a physical copy to go back to for review. I can see taking them out in the solitude of the woods to read and think on while surrounded by nature. Somewhere in that peace they may take an even deeper root.
Once again I’m amazed at how the universe seems to work sometimes. When there is something specific I need to hear, need to witness, or need to have attention drawn to it seems as if there is a never ending supply of that very thing… if I remember to watch and listen closely for it.
Today I found comfort and understanding from an unlikely source. A nugget of wisdom that helped me see I wasn’t alone. A conversation reminding me of purpose. Quotes leading me toward me growth. Thoughts pushing me towards where I want to go in the next twelve months. Reminders of the blessings I have to be grateful for. Opportunities to live into the type of me I should grow into.
All I need already surrounds me. I must remember to listen, breathe, and surrender to it rather than assert my desires onto the present. Before I ask for what I want God has already provided what I need.