Saturday, July 1, 2017

Beginner's Guide to Joyful Living--Day 1


~ July 1, 2017 ~
Since the end of March, I've been struggling with my garden. Maybe the problems are age and infirmity; or maybe I've got too many petunias.Whatever the reasons, I'm determinded to keep my flowers alive.
It's the same with blogging. My mind overflows with ideas and plans, but the body flops onto the sofa with a heating pad. Maybe I've gotten puny; or maybe blogging has gotten harder. The result is the same: frustration.

Frustration tends to stamp out creativity. 
Frustration leads to cobwebs in the brain and blog.
Am I alone? 
Am I the only exhausted person in the room?
Are you creative but exausted?
Just an itty bit? 
Have you lost your place in blogging?

I sorted my options. What do I love? What can be eliminated?
What is my goal?


Goal: to identify a passion that makes a difference in one person's life.

Today, I will try to do what I can, when I can. And it will be enough.
Whatever I manage, I will carve out a quiet moment and be happy as a bee on a blossom.
And I hope you will, too.


42 comments:

  1. You are not alone! I always start the day with big plans. Somehow my body just doesnt seem to keep up anymore. I am only 62. I blame my bout of shingles last year for really taking alot out of me. I still dont feel up to par. I like your last few lines. I aspire to be happy with whatever happens.

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    1. We're almost the same age (I'm 63). I hope you feel better and better each day. I have been trying to garden in the early morning when it's cool. By 11 pm, the batteries fizzle.

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  2. Oh I can so relate. Sometimes I have a million ideas and tons of inspiration. Seems like time, money, motivation and energy are all part of why it doesn't all get done. So just do what is possible and not worry about the rest.

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    1. You inspire me, Marty. Moving to a new house is daunting and exhausting, but you've made a beautiful home. ((hugs))

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  3. I love to blog, but my husband has developed health issues and I am taking on more jobs around the house, yard and managing our finances. You are right about blogging changing in the last few years. I do try to get one post published a week, but it is getting more difficult each week. I know I can read blogs and enjoy the beautiful photography. I am 76 and I want to enjoy each day to the fullest. Reading, cooking and gardening are my favorite things to do each day. Oh. and I pray all day to have patience and love for others.

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    1. I agree. It's vital to take time for simple pleasures. They really aren't that simple, after all, but life-affirming. xxoo

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  4. It is difficult to sit with a plan and follow it religiously. I find it tough.

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    1. I've been streamlining, and wow--it's harder than I thought.

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  5. My oh My, You certainly are not alone with your described feelings of exhaustion and frustration. My garden, simple as it is, has become my main priority in my day to day life. Since I live alone I can get away with whatever I choose to do with my hours of the day. I truly dislike that my house is not in order like in the past. Acceptance, Is a hard word to swallow sometimes. My garden is my therapy and I truly concentrate on Gratitude even though the world around me can feel very foreign and scary at times. I especially love the last photo with the bees. It looks so vibrant and the thought is beautiful. Take good care of yourself and enjoy the weekend. Mary

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    1. Acceptance. It IS difficult to chew. I haven't had a moment to take pictures (except for blurry pictures of a zooming puppy), and I'm using Canva to make posters for the blog. It was either quit blogging altogether or find something easy (and legal).

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  6. Omigosh, I could have written this! My solution is to do what I want to do when I feel like doing it and be content with that. That is especially true of the blog which I want to enjoy doing rather than feeling like it's a job?

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    1. Even though blogging isn't a job for many of us, it can still feel like one. I can't understand it.

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  7. I had a good friend who had a disabling disease, she described her energy in terms of "spoons" as in she only had so many spoonfuls of energy per day, and would carefully plan how she would use them. I often find that if I am careful with my "spoons" and accept the fact that I get tired, it's much less frustrating...

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    1. I love that concept..."little spoonfuls."

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  8. You aren't alone. I'm 62 and at about 2:30 every afternoon I feel like I've hit a brick wall. I don't have a blog of my own, but I've been an avid reader of them for years. They have changed so much in the past few years that it's almost overwhelming just trying to navigate through the ads and pop ups. Hardly anyone has single page blogs anymore and some pop thru so fast I don't have time catch what I want to read. There also seems to be a trend among some of the bloggers to show constant changes to their rooms just to have something to post about. It amazes me to think they have that much energy and that much money. One more thing and then I'll get over my rant, but I really am tired of the white, white, white trend so popular. It can't be practical and it shows little imagination. I've seen some post a picture of a vase of flowers and say "See how the flowers add color and texture to the space." Really? And stop painting all that beautiful wood furniture!

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    1. I don't care for the pop up subscribe boxes. If I want to subscribe or follow, I can figure it out. In early 2017, I made a decision to stop putting my (interior) house on the blog. I'm not a designer, and I have nothing of value to offer. Besides, I love creating ugly vignettes. :-0

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    2. I wondered why I hadn't seen the insides of your home lately, my friend... just reading comments and catching up at the moment, but I'll share my thoughts ;)

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  9. Blogging is not for everyone admittedly. It's odd, but I've never gotten frustrated, but I have had a little disinterest at times. Truth be told it helps motivate me to go out and take more beautiful photos of nature. And I love nature. So in many ways blogging for me is a form of medicine for my soul. Carol

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    1. Carol, your love of nature shines through your photos. Nature is a balm.

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  10. I can't even begin to imagine what bloggers who monetize must feel like, when sometimes it'a all I can do to water annuals in a day and be happy the plants aren't dead. To constantly change things just for the sake of subject material and have to photograph, write about it and then be stuck with it all piling up....exhausts me just to think about it. I enjoy reading and visiting bloggers, but am sure glad it's not a job. I am hosting family for the 4th and can't even get excited about pulling out all my collected things to use, let alone trying to whip up some of the great recipes I see. I have some things out around me that I enjoy daily, and that's good enough for me. Suddenly 60 feels suddenly even more liberating than 59. {smiles}
    I still thank you for your weekly party you host (maybe that feels overbearing, it wouldn't surprise me if so)...it is a wonderful place to come and view beauty and inspiration, even if I don't catch the energy enough to get my get up and go going.

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    1. I told my son that I don't mind aging--I've earned my wrinkles and sags--but I really dislike the ailments that crop up after 60, especially the diverticulosis. Argh. I MISS EATING TOMATOES, and raspberries! As for the whirlwinds of modern blogging, I enjoy the inspiration, but in some instances, I get tuckered out just standing on the sidelines. If looking at a post makes me tired, then I'm truly over the hill. Ready for the crypt. But no, can't let that happen. So, each day, I set the table with a wild, weedy bouquet, mismatched dishes, and cloth napkins. I don't take a picture. The point is to live in the moment.

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  11. The pic of the lady with cobwebs describes how I feel. I don't have a blog but asked God to lead me somewhere I need to be. He led me here. Since having back surgery in Oct 2016 I feel like the life has been drained out of me. I did enjoy floral arranging but haven't had the energy to clean my house much less make arrangements. At least I know I'm not alone. I struggle to get my strength back and am still in such pain. Would like to ask all you praying bloggers whom I enjoy so much to remember me in your prayers. Enjoy your site so much. Thank you. Linda

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    1. Sending up prayers right now, Linda--and I know that any blogger who reads your story will send prayers and healing thoughts your way.

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  12. You certainly are not alone. Blogging takes a great deal of time and it's changing all the time. For me, I cannot keep up with the technology . I decided recently to stop monetizing because that is what was exhausting me. I am blogging what I enjoy and yes it does take up too much time and sometimes I just have to do what i can do. I'd love to switch to Word Press, love to be on Instagram, love to build and grow- but the truth is I'm doing the best I can.. and I'm thanking for that. I am 66 and as one of my friends says- we just can't do what we used to do.
    Thank you for your insightful post!

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    1. Judee, I enjoyed reading your comment. I wanted to move my blog to WP, and I chickened out. I couldn't feel comfortable, and this added another layer of stress. I agree with you and your friend!

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  13. Every stage of life is about letting go of something we love & embracing something we may not want. I've learned when I step back & choose to be grateful in spite of the hard things I have to deal with I often find really good things among the hard parts that when nurtured can grow into something wonderfully sweet.

    I also have found I get so much more accomplished when I eat well & exercise. Why is it so hard to fit that in every day?!

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    1. Jenny, you have a healthy approach to life, love, and work. Just the other day I read a checklist for fatigue, and the first step was hydration. The second was to eat (something that nurtures the body). Love how you choose to be grateful. I'll remember that. Thank you!

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  14. Michael Lee, I will chime in too. I find myself in much the same situation. I have lots of ideas to share, but finding the time and energy to actually see them through to creating a post doesn't come as easily as it once did. I struggle with what to share each week. This week I planned to share something patriotic, but have yet to decide just what.
    And I too struggle with my garden. The summer heat has me avoiding going out to give my garden the attention it needs and deserves. I went out at 8:30 this evening to pull the dead, yellow leaves in the day lily bed. The beds don't look as neat and tidy as I want. I just can't muster the motivation to get out each morning to garden. As you suggest, I will do what I can, when I can, and that will be enough. ;-)
    I like this guide. Thanks, my friend!
    Happy 4th of July!

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    1. Sarah, I deadheaded my daylilies (Stellas), and I think I may have shocked them. I should have let them be. :-) I had been watering at dusk, and I found myself dreading it. I figured out that my energy is higher in the morning, so I've been watering at 7 am. It's cool and lovely. I also added a little sprinkler attachment to the hose, and that has made life easier.

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  15. I'm stuck, exhausted and frustrated

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    1. You aren't alone, Susan. But I'm thinking there's peace on the other side. The peace comes from the power of speaking out and speaking together. Wishing you a shining moment of joy!

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  16. I always find encouragement within the words of your blog. There seems to always be beauty for the desires of my heart. I believe most women can relate to your thoughts today. I just turned 63 a couple of weeks ago, and I know I certainly can. You know, simplisity helps me breathe, clear the cobwebs, and always, always makes me smile. I am learning that most of the time that is all I need. Thank you for your honesty. It is invigorating.

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    1. Sherry, thank you so much for your uplifting words. I have been thinking about this series for over a year, but I was afraid to be honest. You have encouraged me to keep going. Thank you!

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  17. I'll chime in by saying that I have always enjoyed your blog and will forever be a reader. I don't have expectations of any blogs I follow, just seeing a post is enough for me. I enjoy snippets of your life, and look forward to all photos that you share. As far as my blog, it has turned into a journal of my week. When I look back at my older blog posts and see they have been viewed over 12,000 times, it makes me smile and realize that I don't have the time and motivation that I had in my "prime". LOL

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  18. I've been gone too long haven't I? Life has been up and down lately and my blog visiting and posting and emailing have suffered. I feel a tad more motivated today, but honestly, I'm fricken' exhausted. I have so many things going on, none of which I want to blog about and even when I do have something, I forget to take photos lol Also, the posts I do have in mind don't seem to be as liked, which sounds stupid, since I don't make money from it, but I think people want to see more house stuff and honestly, I don't have much going on here. Mostly, I'm grumpy because of the heat. I can't get away from it. Anyway, enough bitching ;)

    That said... I hear you, my dear friend. We've been doing this a very long time and sometimes it's just BLAH, BLAH, BLAH... same old, same old. Funny though, I'm always inspired by your posts and I think this is a good one. A VERY good one. I'm off to read more.

    By the way, congratulations on your new bundle of puppy! Jasper is a doll :)

    love you

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  19. I feel the same way. I start out each day with a long to do list, all fired up and ready to go. Then, I slowly fizzle out. I turned 59 this year and I've really started thinking about what's important. I've gotten so hung up on the numbers with blogging, I've forgotten how to enjoy it.

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  20. You ladies have made my week. I will turn 60 next week. I had a hip replacement at 46. Since before that my energy levels have dropped drastically. I do what I can when I can as you already said. It feels so good to know there are others and I am not just getting lazy.

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  21. I'm sorry I'm so far behind following your daily journal. I'm behind following a lot of blogs and responding to comments--> read embarrassed. Summer is my very least favorite time of year as I do NOT function well in 90+ degrees combined with oppressive humidity. I well remember your temperature of happiness post, I think I commented that mine is 68 - 72 degrees. Early morning has always been best time of day for me energy wise. There's something therapeutic to me about deadheading, weeding and watering in the garden, but only when it's before 9 am. I can't seem to get motivated to turn on the oven for a recipe/blog post. I look back at our Novel Baker posts and think, "wow...how did we do all that?" I seem to wax and wane as far as motivation. I look forward to fall (my favorite season) so it will be easier to be motivated.

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  22. Oh my..this is so awesome to read all these comments. I too am tired and brain foggy and way too hot to do much besides just the essentials. I keep thinking my blogging want to will kick back in again but might as well accept it has just gone away.. I turned 64 in April and hate that I can't do all that I want to but my body wins out most of the time. Great post Michael Ann..
    Love,
    Mona

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    1. Mona, when I started this challenge, I felt sad and frustrated with the blog, but now, with only 3 days to go, I feel strangely invigorated (though I did manage to get sick smack dab in the middle of the month). It helped me really think about why I was blogging (sometimes it is so hard). If I do another challenge, would you like to join me?

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  23. You are definitely not alone, Michael! I have just committed to my fourth blog redesign (not bad for 15 years of blogging, I suppose). I have so many ideas, but I feel like whenever I sit down to write a blog post I get distracted. July was such a busy month, I'm working through your Joyful Living posts this month in August. I look forward to a bit of a fresh perspective, and to feeling more inspired.

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