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Goodbye 2013/Hello 2014

The past 3 or 4 months have been so hectic, so crazy and so wonderful that I just haven’t had a chance to do any blogging.  So I have a lot of making up to do.  I will say that I am so excited about this New Year and am looking forward to all the opportunities that it will bring my way.  I can honestly say 2013 was probably one of the most challenging, stressful, at times downright awful years that I have ever been through.   But as the not so great years usually go, there were also many, many good things that happened too.  And I feel it is learning from the bad and keeping faith in the good that has set me up for an incredible 2014!

I will admit that I am not good at making (or keeping) New Years’ Resolutions.  I sometimes call them good intentions instead of resolutions just to take the pressure off me to actually follow through.  But last year I made a resolution (or good intention if you will) to read the entire Bible.  And I actually did it!  All the way to December 31st I followed through.  Not only was it so comforting to me during the past year but I have realized that I can actually follow through with a resolution!  So coming off a year with a successful resolution, I am trying to put forth the effort to really make 2014’s happen.  I have tried to use what I have learned from the past year, and by doing so, have come up with the following 2014 Resolutions. 

–          Never quit before the miracle.  I love this quote!  And don’t get me wrong, I’m not expecting miracles to happen around every corner.  What this means to me is to not give up.  Just keep the faith.  And of course, it just depends on what you think a miracle is.  For instance, right now, we are trying to keep our Great Pry, Balto from wandering off all over the county.  We must do this for his safety, consideration of our neighbors and to settle my nerves!  We are trying to secure a large area of the female alpaca pasture but every time we come up with a new plan, he is out in minutes.  I am really trying not to give up, but for me, beating Balto at his own game will truly be a miracle!!!

–          Spend as little time as possible around negative, hateful, deceitful people.  Make my exit as quickly as possible and never, ever feel bad about it.  You see, there have been days over the past year where it has taken all that I have to put a smile on my face, have a positive attitude and a calming demeanor.  Yet I feel like I have spent a year dealing with too many spoiled, angry, selfish people.  I don’t know if I noticed it more this year because I was not in a good place or just what the problem was.  But I have decided that these are not the type of people that I enjoy being around and will do what I need to in order to remove myself from those situations.  I will not allow others to bring me down to their level.

–          Take better care of myself.  This one is so easy to write down and so hard to do!  Develop an exercise plan, eat better, just generally make healthier choices.  I would really like to learn to meditate.  It seems my mind is going a mile a minute all the time.  This is bad and good as sometimes I spend too much time worrying about things, yet other times I feel this is where my creativity comes from.  But whatever my mind is thinking about, I need to find a way to shut it down and let it rest occassionally.

–          Take my camera around with me as much as possible.  My family gave me a new Nikon Camera for Christmas and my birthday and I can’t wait to get busy with it.  I just need to get in the habit of keeping it handy more in order to get that great shot!

–          Blog consistently, be myself and provide more informational content.  I have so much to get you caught up on!  I want to set up a blog schedule for myself and use the farm blog so that others can enjoy the farm as much as we do.  I hope that you can follow along with us on our journey through all the good times and bad, successes and mistakes.  But I also want to share my passion a little more…..let everyone in on my latest projects and perhaps provide a tip or two.  I love nothing better than finding out that I have inspired someone to try something new, so make sure you keep the comments coming.  We can all learn from each other.

Well, I think that is all I can handle for 2014.  I better get busy.  Happy New Year!

GoodBye 2012 Hello 2013


Photo by Ashley Givens

Photo by Ashley Givens

I have been thinking about doing a Goodbye 2012/Hello 2013 post for some time, but until the last few days, I guess I just haven’t had the heart to get it done.  Jeff lost his job just a couple of weeks before Christmas and it seemed to send our world reeling!  But we are doing better now, feeling stronger, more positive and ready to take on 2013 for whatever opportunities and challenges it has in store for us.  We still have the same goals for ourselves, our family and our little fiber farm, but we will just have to work smarter, leaner and be more creative.  I just finished reading a book called The Feast Nearby (Mather, 2011).  It’s a wonderful book of essays & recipes, the author’s year-long journey of preparing local, seasonal home cooked meals, all while facing a radical life change and healing her heart.  In the book Mather said “I elected to be grateful even for life’s challenges, because we often don’t grow without a push” (Mather, 187).  While we feel like we were pushed (maybe even shoved) into a 2013 of uncertainty, we will count our blessings every day and see where this new year takes us.

As I looked back on 2012 I realize that we have a lot of reasons to celebrate.  I am pretty anal about some things, for example my month-to-month to do list, broken down daily with tasks assigned to each day.  Sounds crazy, I know, but with everything we have going on, it keeps me on task better than anything else I have tried.  Sometimes when I look at my To Do List it seems like I am never able to get enough done.  But I have to tell myself to look at the big picture, an entire month or even better, an entire year. When I look back at that big picture, it is amazing what we have accomplished in our first full year on Parsons’ Prairie Farm.  Look for my 2012 recap post tomorrow.  Happy New Year!

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