watch and be amazed

Last week our six-year-old wanted me to see how accomplished he’s become at fixing his own bed. Before he had struggled with wrestling all those winter layers into place, but now wanted to me to see how well he can do it. “Watch and be amazed,” he said in his most dramatic voice.

I watched and was amazed – at how much he’s changed since August 2010. It’s rather gratifying – yes, even amazing – to watch one’s children grow in their skills and talents. It’s a shame that I don’t pause more often to be amazed, to be thankful for abundant blessings.

As I reflected on the past year, there have been many reasons to “be amazed.” I’m especially thankful for

meaningful work that gets me out of the house enough to prevent boredom

the 800 books people gave to share with refugees

our two part-time salaries, which have consistently provided enough money to pay all the bills – plus some extra to rebuild our emergency fund

my column on local food

the little free library

thoughtful, generous friends and family who have offered encouragement and support of many kinds throughout the past year

things to do someday

Instead of New Year’s resolutions, I’ve decided to finish up lots of things I’ve been putting off too long. Most are smaller tasks I just don’t get around to in an average day.

So far in January, I’ve cleaned the top of the refrigerator, finished the rug for the bathroom, and negotiated a lower rate for our trash service. Up next: adding some new vegetable side dishes to my repertoire.

What’s on your list of “things to do someday?”

related post: garbage

Looking back and looking forward

Happy new year. The new year is as good of an excuse as any for a fresh start. It’s also a good time to look back.

Professionally, I’m pleased to have gotten a good start at freelancing. But one of my goals for the coming 12 months is to give myself a raise by finding some better paying gigs. (When I calculate how much per hour I’m making on some of my assignments it’s shamefully low.) I also wouldn’t mind more opportunities to tutor/coach writing.

Have you got any resolutions? What would you like to accomplish in 2009?