Thursday, November 29, 2012

Happy Birthday to Me

"Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go."
~ T. S. Eliot

On November 23rd I celebrated my 31st birthday! And my blog turned 1. One year of blogging! Woohoo!  I know this because I began this blog as my 30th birthday present to myself. It was an experiment of sorts. I can't say it's been successful~but it wasn't success I was looking for. It was about taking a step out and doing something for myself. Putting myself out on a limb. Which is wonderful because it led to me beginning my little art business. Which, again, wasn't about success either. It was about gaining confidence in myself. Taking another step a bit further out on that limb. It gave me enough confidence to begin to socialize a bit (I've been a "desperate housewife" of sorts for years, living out a self-imposed ostracized life.) leading me to my group of prayer friends. These are people I could be totally me with. People who knew my past, who knew my struggles~no holding back, no posturing~ and still accepted me. Within  in this group, I met a good friend who lent me a helping hand in taking another step towards doula work~assisting with her in my first birth in the role of student doula. It was with this group of friends, Team McArthur was born, quenching my thirst for charity, my fourth vow~serving others around me with love. And from there sprung the branch of my art business called Art Charity. Being able to socialize once again, led me to local Meetup Groups such as Ten Moons' Birth Circle group, Warrenton Waldorf-Inspired Homeschooling group, and an Aware Parenting group~yes, more putting myself further out on the limb and meeting new people. And from here, let me tell you, the view is spectacular.

What an absolutely beautiful year it has been for me.

It has been my best year yet. Out so far on this branch of mine~from here I will either fall or fly. I think it will be the latter :) And besides with God at my side whom shall I fear, right??! I have high hopes for what year 31 holds in store for me. I coined what is now known as "Project 31". It is my list of goals I have set for myself this year. It mostly consists of 4 major categories:

A) Self-sustaining lifestyle/skills
B) Holistic: Head, Heart, Hands
C) Attitude of Gratitude
D) Contemplative (everything with God) ~but of course!

My subcategories are:
#1) Food: whole foods, healthy, unprocessed, lose excess weight (once and for all. Big prize if I do~my brother will go on a hike with me on my beloved Appalachian Trail come spring if I can lose 30 lbs in 6 mos. Already lost 5!! Only 25 more to go.)
         -buy local
         -buy organic
         -learn to grow
         -learn to can

#2) Conscious living: know where my food comes from, know where my clothing comes from, know where my products come from:
         -buy local
         -buy handmade
         -Make by hand

#3) Sewing skills, knitting skills, crochet skills, etc...

All this will be a progression~little by little over the course of the year; no do or die attitude, only a nice gentle flow towards change. I keep a little journal of skills I'm learning and/or have researched and objectives I accomplished that day.

Baking bread in the kitchen yesterday (see already working towards my goals ~objectives: unprocessed foods, made from scratch ;) with my daughter, Anna (9), who has a birthday herself in a couple of weeks as spurred her to do her own 'Project 10' and joining me in this journey!

And you may have noticed my new blog design. I figured with my blog turning 1, it needed a new look :) The picture is from the Appalachian Trail, a reminder and encourager of things to come... I've been doing more hikes with our little Waldorf homeschool group as well and am finding so much solace in the woods and nature, I thought I'd bring a piece of that to my blog. So raise up your glasses and lets say a cheers to a new year of life and a new year of blogging!!