Monday, May 26, 2014

a time to remember

The whole earth is the sepulcher of famous men. They are commemorated not only by columns and inscriptions in their own country but in foreign lands also by memorials not graven on stone but on the hearts of men.

~attributed to the Greek general, Pericles and inscribed on the facade of the Auckland War Memorial Museum

Luxembourg American Cemetery and Memorial
Heartfelt gratitude and respect to all who have served to make this country what it is, and all who continue to serve to keep it free. A particularly special thanks to both of my grandfathers as well as the various uncles and cousins and people I know personally who have sacrificed their time and their lives for those of us here at home. God bless.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

spring cleaning.

I’ve been on some interesting journeys in the last year. For some of them I packed a suitcase, visited a beautiful locale for a few days and then returned to the comforts and stability of home and routine. For others I packed up everything I owned never to return. And then there were all of the emotional and spiritual journeys I’ve embarked on. Some of those paths I can look back on with fondness and new found enlightenment and some I’m still processing.

I’ve hinted at my new life status a few times but there is nothing like being jobless and living in your parent’s basement to make you question your purpose and direction in life, even if it was a conscious decision to be there!

I’m looking to May as a second New Year, another chance to set some goals and plan for progress in a new environment with new challenges and opportunities.

One of those goals is to re-visit the format of this blog. It doesn’t have a lot of structure--it’s sort of just a hodge-podge of everything all over the place. My posts haven’t been as thoughtful and well-written lately as I would like. I know my content has been very excursion based recently, covering all the escapades in Thailand and beyond but looking back I’ve noticed they’re rather bland and mechanical, many dashed off just to get the ideas down but without a lot of grace in the telling.

Is it still serving my needs? Do I need to re-vamp it with a new design, weekly features, a narrower focus? Or just scale back and not worry about posting so often as much as posting more thoughtfully?

There’s a lot in my life that is going through similar scrutiny, as you can imagine. I live very broadly but there’s not always enough depth. And while I used to pride myself on my varied interests and hobbies I’ve come to regret that I have very few things I can truly qualify as talents because I haven’t devoted a chunk of my life to any one thing. To create a cheesy metaphor: I’ve walked in the surf along a lot of beautiful beaches and enjoyed all the experiences along the way but I’ve never really learned to swim. (My scanty resume can attest to this, unfortunately.)

I’ve also accumulated a lot of stuff. When I left Utah several years ago it was only supposed to be for a short time. I shoved almost all of my belongings into a storage unit thinking I would be back in a few months. Eight years later they’re all still languishing in the 8x10 garage covered in an inch of dust only to be joined by all the stuff I brought back from Virginia. And it will all be there until I find a job and have a place of my own to move it to.

All this uncertainty and clutter, literal and figurative, is starting to get to me. I’m hoping to streamline my possessions, my thoughts, my goals, my schedule and routines, giving more full attention and deeper respect to the things I choose to keep as parts of my life. My key word for 2014 was “relationships” and I want to use that to help choose what goes and what stays. Things may be quiet around here for a while ‘til I get everything sorted out, but I promise I’ll let you know what I decide.

I’m curious though. Have any of you gone through a similar clearing out/starting over process? How did you decide what to keep and let go of? What would you have done differently? How long did your results/resolve last? Any suggestions as I embark on this journey?

And on a different but completely related note, anyone hiring?!   ;)