It’s Labor Day, and the start of the school year tomorrow for most students in Rochester. Caleb started kindergarten in Illinois two weeks ago. September has always seemed like a second restart to me. I’ve been living with my One Little Word for eight months, and the list of intentions I wrote in January.
It’s a good time to reassess. Actually, I started the process in August when I became frustrated with my ability to get to some of the projects I love and have committed to, and printed out a new copy of my tracking sheet. It’s rather amazing how well this works for me.
I finally finished my #100DayProject, and only sketched once after that. My card making fell into a string of days when I made sure to have the cards I needed for August and early September.
And finally, at the end of the month, I got going on Project Life. I was nearly a year behind, but have finished all the pages for 2016 and have the title page for 2017 completed.
A lot of advance planning for the next several months is also done. I gave up on my Christmas Journal, and decided to include the holidays in the Project Life album. I think that’s probably the path of the future as well. The mail brought a package from Gossamer Blue this week. They had a Half Price sale so I bought one full kit as well as a Life Pages kit. This is only some of the goodies. I put away the stamps and several other items before I thought to take a photo.
Exercise was the biggest improvement. I scheduled a meeting with my personal trainer and started a new routine at the gym. That plus walking meant that there were only a few days in August that I wasn’t active.
Journaling didn’t happen, and it’s on the list for September. I’m trying a new eating plan which I added to the list for September and a 4 week shopping ban---only groceries, gifts, and necessities. I’ve had some serious issues with my feet, and have purchased several pairs of good shoes which allow me to wear new orthotics which were prescribed by the orthopedic surgeon. Somehow that seemed to give me leeway to go on a shopping spree.
You can see that I only missed one day of reading, and it paid off with seven books read in August, possibly the most I’ve ever read in a month. Two of my favorites were theology-based, but I can recommend two novels.
The first is our September book group book, A Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit. It’s a compelling story of a young man who parks his car on a dirt road, throws the keys on the dashboard, and walks into the Maine wilderness. The next time, he emerges is 27 years later. How and why that happens is the plot of the book, but much of what I loved was the author’s inclusion of the research and history of solitude. How is it that one person can thrive on total solitude, but it drives most people crazy? (Sometimes literally.)
The second book is Gail Godwin’s Grief Cottage. It’s a ghost story of sorts, but also a meditation on loneliness, solitude, memories, and grief. I've long been a fan of Gail Godwin, having enjoyed Father Melancholy's Daughter, Evensong, and Flora, among others.
We’ve had a busy weekend. We were invited to a lovely Shabbat Dinner on Friday evening, entertained two couples here on Saturday, and went to a Fantasy Football picnic yesterday. Today has been very quiet, but there are more good things coming in the week ahead.