February is almost over – and its been such a busy month keeping the house clean and ready for potential buyers to view.
This year I’m focusing on life through the lens of happiness – my #WOTY. I’m recording my monthly activities using this mnemonic GREAT DREAM – 10 keys to building a life of happiness and fulfilment.
Giving (Do kind things for others)
Our local SeniorNet committee is arranging some practical help sessions for anyone who needs support to complete the Census forms online. I have been busy organising venues and people to assist. Apart from being helpful to others, it should be an interesting day.
Relating (Connect with people)
This month we joined a community meeting to share ideas for future access into our damaged roads following the extreme weather event we experienced in August 2022. It was a volatile session at times as people vented their frustration, and yet, there was also a great sense of connection with and between so many people. Relating with others gives a sense of power in uniting together for a common cause.
We decided on a day trip to Nelson to attend the home and garden show. We hoped to get inspiration and information for our new home. Whilst we were there, we met up with some of our old neighbors whom we hadn’t seen since our early parenting years. It was so good to have a chat about what they were doing, what their children were up to, and yes, even how many grandchildren we each have. How did those years go by so quickly? Such strong connections were formed as we struggled with the joys and tribulations of parenting. It felt good to share those happy memories together again.
Exercising (Take care of your body)
I got plenty of exercise in the few days when we were dog-sitting our grand-dog Flick. She is a very cute Jack Russell terrier.
I took Flick for walks on the beach every day at low tide or brief walks around the garden if it was raining or the tide was too high. She refused to walk on the wet grass though. Precious pooch! Maybe I should dog- sit more often as it is an enjoyable way to exercise. She certainly made herself at home – and yes that is a laundry basket she chose for her bed one night.
Awareness (Live life mindfully)
“There is a positive connection between art and mental health—artistic activities such as sculpting, painting, or drawing are known to lower stress levels and promote mental calmness. Creating art takes your mind off of your everyday life and provides a relaxing distraction.”
And so …. I continue to practice mindfulness through my daily drawing or sketching. I’m currently exploring neurographic art.
Trying Out (Keep learning new things)
“There’s no age limit on the learning process, given good health. The theory side is straightforward and everyone learns how to draw using the same methods. It’s a new skill and you can learn it. You can progress and get better at drawing.“
I’ve been trying to improve my skills at sketching body parts – eyes, hands, mouths and ears.
I’ve discovered this is quite a challenge so back to the Pinterest and YouTube tutorials I go.
The only thing is I do get distracted and meander down many rabbit holes. My Pinterest boards are getting rather larger and even more diverse.
Direction (Have goals to look forward to)
A goal for this month was to spot the comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF).
I spent an enjoyable evening under the stars searching for this Comet. Discovered some time ago this is called the ‘Green Comet’ and is also known as the Neanderthal comet as it was first passing Eatth around 50,0000 years ago. I didn’t find the comet but it was fun trying. It’s now heading off in another direction and won’t be back for 55,000 years! That may be a tad too long to wait around. I’ll have to seek a new direction to look up to amongst the stars.
Or maybe I’ll just stick with sunsets.
Resilience (Find ways to bounce back)
When life gives you lemons, make lemonade – or so the saying goes. And it is so true.
There are plenty of lemons, limes and lemonades ripening in our citrus orchard this month. We are enjoying the boost of extra Vitamin C in hot and cold drinks -and of course the limes go well in my gin and tonic. I hope that makes me more resilient (and happy) too.
Emotions (Look for what’s good)
This month I have been looking for good ideas in house design, storage options and furnishings. There are many things to consider when planning and preparing to move house. I have felt both confused and excited; and at times, quite frustrated. Will we build or should we buy? So many choices.
So many emotions as I let go the old and embrace the new. Letting go of all those old redundant clothes in my wardrobe was indeed therapeutic. I’m looking forward to filling that walk-in wardrobe with some bright and colourful new clothes. Bright colours make me happy.
Looking for what is good is more positive and healthy than dwelling on the negatives.
Acceptance (Be comfortable with who you are)
This month I have indulging in my love of reading even more often than normal. As my kindle battery is giving up, I have to use the kindle app on my phone instead. The only problem with that is that I keep getting updates on how much screen time’ I have each day (and night). It almost makes me feel guilty and yet, then I remember how reading is such an important and valuable pastime.
Meaning (Be part of something bigger)
Quiz night at the local tavern again:
I always look forward to being part of the friendly banter within and between the teams. We have a lot of fun, and twice now we have nearly won. Second prize (out of 4 teams) isn’t too bad for us. Its better than being fourth! Whilst it may not really be being part of something bigger, it is a highly social evening, and I get a night off cooking. We are eternally optimistic that we will win, our team name is The Optimists!
They come for coffee – or so we thought……. A very good friend of ours from our tourism business days brought his clients to visit us for coffee. They wandered the beach, they went swimming, they ate lunch, and some did actually drink the coffee. I think the picture is self explanatory, We had such a fun afternoon and wonderful conversations.
Overall February was a big month – oh, and we got an offer on our house. Watch this space.
It must be time for more GREAT DREAMS.