It's been Christmas wrapping paper and 5 chocolate oranges (at least) since my last confession. It's been 2 days of wearing only pajamas, 1 Christmas eve day of flying through the city visiting friends and family as well as Candy Cane Lane.
But now we look forward to New Year's. To new beginnings. To happy endings. To the confessional--
Becoming Emily Dickinson--
I confess I'm always a little melancholy when the Christmas season is over and there is no longer Christmas music on the radio. I know many people are quite happy to be putting away the decorations, tossing the tree, but I like these winter moments of being at home with sparkling lights.
I also think part of me enjoys that the weather is so bad (wet & cold here in the Northwest) so it's okay to stay inside and read. I don't have to tend the garden. I don't have to deal with the outside world of landscape, weeds, or lawn.
In the winter, it's okay to be Emily Dickinson in my upstairs room waving to the children outside. I actually enjoy staying in (almost too much) and sometimes I can see my future self as an old woman in a white nightgown sitting by myself reading and the thought is not scary to me, but oddly comforting knowing how much I like to be home and staying in.
New Year's Possible Guidelines -
I confess there is something wonderful about a New Year approaching.
Maybe it's the knowing that we can start fresh. I know that every day can actually be a fresh start, but this feels more official. A new date, a new year, a new calendar. I enjoy looking back at my year. And I also appreciate looking forward at what can I do differently or better.
I confess I actually like writing resolutions, though I've never liked the name "resolutions" as it's too stuffy for me, so I tend to refer to mine as New Year's Suggestions. There's less pressure to perform that way if you see them as "possible guidelines" or "suggestions" as they become something one cannot actually fail at. I mean, who wants to start the year by screwing up?
The Organized Poet (is not an oxymoron)--
I confess I love opening new calendars and organizers for the new year.
It returns to organizing and New Year Suggestions for me, to start fresh with new habits to make things easier on me in the long run. It's my Capricorn nature to be organized and for a long time, I wished I was much more spontaneous and whimsical, as I imagined poets, writers, and artists to be, but now I have learned to like my practicality, to appreciate that I'm disciplined and careful.
No, you won't see me with unbalanced checkbook, dying my hair blue, or forgetting to show up for reading. As much as I'd love to be the cool poet with the jet black hair drinking my 10th martini dropping the F-bomb in thigh-high boots, I'm more likely to be the one who wore corduroy and went home early to read or get some sleep and dream about the cool poet in her thigh-high boots. Love me for my To-Do lists, for my ability to organize my books alphabetically by the poet's last name, for my Huey Lewis theme song life-- "It's hip to be Square"-- even if it's not, don't let me know that.
The Organized Poet Shares Her Very Boring Life of Lists--
And I confess, if you're wanting to get organized or need a new calendar, here are my two favorites this year...
2011 BusyBodyBook Personal & Family Organizer -
I am currently using this book, which was designed to help you keep track of all your family's activities (each family member gets their own column & you can write where they are or what they need to do each day) except I use mine to keep track of my different projects. I have columns that say "Writing," "Crab Creek Review," "Personal," "Home," and 2 blank columns I change weekly depending on what I'm working on.
I started using this last year and love it. Every Sunday night while watching Amazing Race, I organize my week and what I need to get done.
A Working Writer's Daily Planner 2011: Your Year in Writing
***This will be my first year with calendar on my desk. I plan to use it to keep track of what poems I'm working on and notes on my writing projects, inspiration or ideas.
And I confess I wish happiness for each and every one of you in 2011. You have brought me much happiness and satisfaction with this blog and if I could dish out happiness to you like ice cream scoops, I'd give you extra helpings.
To a whipped cream New Year's with sprinkles, wafer cookies and chocolate sauce!
And if you're gluten and/or dairy-free, I wish you an acceptable alternative. . .