happy new year!

It’s Sunday night…the house is quiet…everyone is sleeping. It’s cold, and so my hot chocolate is especially enjoyable! I haven’t taken the pink trees down yet. So I am still enjoying the pink glow as I sit here with the lights out enjoying some quiet. It feels like I haven’t had any quiet in awhile…I have been way too tired to stay up late for my usual ‘alone’ time.  We have so been enjoying our ‘holiday’ week. everyone is off school, so the kids have had friends to play with everyday… happy kids=happy mom! (most the time). Although yesterday I totally bummed them out by making everyone WORK all day cleaning house. It takes all of us to get the job done, and occupy the babies so that Capri isn’t un-doing all that have been done as fast as we do it! do you ever have that experience when you sweep, and there is so much dirt on the floor, that you wonder how you have been living in that ? lol… and I did my 2 VERY LEAST favorite tasks: clean out fridge and clean showers. Despite the fact that I HATE doing both… they are the thing that I LOVE having clean. So I guess that is it’s own reward. Everything smelled so nice and clean… that is until this morning. So, yesterday eric got me a Chinese crock pot. Of course, I have no idea what the settings are, and I supposed that I shouldn’t have assumed that they work just like my crock pot at home… cause as we were heading out the door for church I dropped some chicken and bbq sauce in the crock pot and set it for 4 hours. … meanwhile, we went to church, eric and I had been  asked to speak today…so I guess I was more concerned about that, than the crock pot situation…as we got home, the house seemed smoky and it smelled like something was totally burning. Who knows what setting the crock pot was on, well- HIGH I guess… LOL. But the chicken was burned to an absolute crisp. I was so bummed about the STINK; even more than the fact i had to figure something else out for lunch. So, I switched gears, defrosted more chicken and made some yummy chicken tenders, and whipped up some banana bread in my new mixer! I popped it in the oven as we ate, and right after dinner, I went to put Connor down for a nap, and wound up laying down and .. you guessed it: BURNED the banana bread. UGH. More stink. I hate that! because you kinda get used to the burn smell in your house, and you don’t really notice it, but then when someone comes in , you know it totally reeks to them! Chuckle. I wonder how long before it won’t smell bad in here! I have been burning my cucumber melon gold canyon candle…and so now it smells like burned cucumber melon.
Tomorrow is New Years Eve. 2008. I swear, it was just barely the year 2000 when we had our generator ready, as there was that twinge of a concern that maybe everything would come to an abrupt halt as the new millennium rolled over. Can that possibly be 8 years ago? I can remember what I was wearing… and what we were doing. Time does fly. I have been doing a lot of thinking about 2007, and what I hope for in 2008. I love the whole ‘fresh new start’ thing that comes with a new year. I want to make it awesome. I want to live it to the fullest. I have a few things that I want to really make an effort to truly improve in. one of which is that I want to do a little better PLANNING and Preparing. I am such a last-minute-fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants girl… but I think that it’s time for me to plan a little more carefully, in effort to be more efficient with my time. I have been carefully evaluating how I can get more from my meager 24 hours in a day! It just seems to never be enough! So clearly, I must get more from those 24 hours.
I am not going to attempt to assume what 2008 will bring. I have learned to expect the unexpected…but what I did learn from 2007 is that no matter what it brings, it’s important to LIVE each moment. To be conscious, and purposeful…and present.
Tomorrow night we are having a bit of a party here… we have reserved our clubhouse, and invited some families to celebrate a new year of opportunity, a new year of hope, life, growth, adventure, challenges and certainly a new year to remember…and so here’s to 2008… I wish you a Happy and wonder-full New Year… may it be all that you imagine, hope and dream it to be! …………………..we’ll be one of the first to welcome 2008 here in Beijing…it’s going to be great.

PS… if you are interested in coming to see me here in Beijing… Jim West is announcing a China tour that we have designed especially for scrapbookers!  Fundamentally, this is a trip to Beijing…including all the fabulous sights, tastes and experiences you can ONLY get here in Beijing. the scrapbooking part is just a little gravy on a once-in-a-lifetime deal. You don’t have to be a scrapbooker to come! but we will be creating a rockin’ travel journal… and i will personally show you what i have come to love about this place!  i am already working on cool things to share that will capture the essence of Beijing for your travel log and stuff that will make your scrapbook of this memorable trip truly unique. Jim will be posting the details, the itinerary  and all other info on his site Monday: www.scrapmap.com…be sure to check it out! this is such an amazing destination.

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