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Friday, January 6

simple joys for January...

...make this the year you snap lots of photos...golden sunsets, laughing children, smiling grandmas, glowing faces 'round the campfire, that first juicy tomato, plump pumpkins, and snowy days of quiet beauty. Capture those moments you want to remember.

...start a new hobby. What have you always wanted to do? Is this the year it can happen? If not fully, then read, read, and read some more until you're practically an expert on what you'd like to do. Whatever it might be, the beginning of a new year has us filled with great expectations! Wise words
from Sir William Osler  tell us,

"No man is really happy or safe without a hobby,
and it makes precious little difference 
what the outside interest
may be...

botany, beetles or butterflies, roses, tulips or irises;
fishing, mountaineering or antiquities 
- anything will do so long as he straddles a hobby and rides it hard."

I spent a year reading up on chickens, coops, and all the how-to's to of beginning. Then, before I knew it, we were on our way home from the feed store with 6 little peeps in a box! Dreams do come true.

...take stock of things. Check food storage expiration dates, kids outgrown summer clothing, papers that need sorting/filing, socks that mysteriously seem to disappear, and wire coat hangers that somehow always seem to multiply. Start the year off, one room at a time, or even just one drawer at a time, and sort, give away, set to order. Donate clothes that no longer fit, corral wire hangers and take them to the dry cleaners, bundle newspapers for recycling (or roll them to make great fire starters), and file away important papers where you can find them. 

...when you take the Christmas tree outside, tuck it in the corner of your yard as a winter hiding spot for birds. Hang birdseed bells and suet cakes on the branches...the birds will be so grateful.

...the weather outside is frightful, so snuggle up by the fire, make popcorn, play board games, stir up some chocolaty cocoa, and watch favorite movies. Then, just so we don't forget all the fun of being kids, build a snowman, whip up snow ice cream, go on a wintry hike, have a snowball fight, and speed down
a sledding hill!

We' re launching a new year, and yet as the wind whistles through the pines and I see swaying branches outside my windows, it's natural to reflect on the past. While being richly blessed the past year, we also remember the loss of a loved one.

So we began January with favorite traditions, and now to consider what we'll do with the time that lies before us. A clean slate, a fresh start, a new calendar. How much fun, laughter, work, and personal growth will be put into this year is up to us.

May we all have a new year filled with blessings.


  1. Beautiful pictures! Best wishes for a blessed new year to Windy Meadows Farm!

  2. Beautifully written reminders for a fresh start!

  3. I too am ready for 2012, having like you experienced loss in 2011. Jan. always fills me with excitement of a fresh start & thoughts of cleaning out, organizing & simplifying. I saw your comment on a blog & noticed you also are from a farm in the "heartland", so thought I'd stop by & say "Hi." We don't have any snow here though...haven't had much more than 1 or 2 inches this winter...craZy!

  4. And are you reading about bees this January?

    Happy New Year!


    PS. Beautiful photos!

  5. Andrea, actually I had the thought this week that I'd better dust off my favorite bee book and refresh my memory...how did you know?! There's so much to learn! -Mary

  6. What a great post. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and making some of us think about 2012 in a different light.


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