I’ve thought a lot about generosity of late. I strive to be generous (in my thoughts and in my words,in what I have done and what I have failed to do, the Catholic girl in me wants to chant, not in an act of penance, but in an act of edification), and I admire generosity in others so much. So today’s list will be about generosity, particularly generosity shown to me.
Look at those eggs! My lovely student Teresa brought them to me (fresh from her adorablechickens) this week with an open-hearted generosity that reminds me how fortunate I am to know my students.
Ann Wood‘s free patterns. I am always willing to pay for patterns. I want to support designers and makers whose work I admire. Yet there’s a generous sweetness when a designer offers a pattern to the world, sharing the joy of making something to delight.
Free Writing Support. My dear friend and mentor Joyce Hayden offers Writing with Joy, a free writing accountability hour. If you are a writer, you will love this low-pressure group. I have joined a few times and it has been so productive. She writes on Zoom from 7-8pm eastern Monday-Thursday and anyone who wants to set that time aside for themselves, is welcome to join her on Zoom and spend an hour working on your project. To join, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.She sends links for the week on Sunday evening…you join at your convenience..every night, once a week, once a month! Give it a try!!!
I’d love to hear how you’ve been generous lately or about someone you’ve noticed being generous. Can there ever be enough generosity?
Two years ago, Neal bought me a t-shirt that really made me feel seen. It reads “Steady Habits USA”and is from Hartford Prints. Connecticut, if you don’t know, is nicknamed “Land of Steady Habits”. As a person who believes deeply in the Flaubert quote “[b]e regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work,” I have cultivated many habits. Some stick for a long time, others develop and shift. Today I’ll share three of my current faves.
Yoga. I practice some days for 10 minutes, some days for 90. Most days I do a home practice with Yoga with Adriene videos. I invested a few years ago in a membership to her site, and I’m so happy to support her work. I have practiced every day for over 1,500 days. I know my chain will one day break, but I love and crave time on my mat every day.
Five-year journal. With the nice round number at the start of the year, I figured I’d keep a little record of how the decade unfolds. It’s been fun to jot down thoughts about the day before I go to bed every night. Since the journal is pretty big, when I go away, I just write my entry in whatever notebook I have with me and transfer to the “official” journal when I get home. I think this will be pretty cool to review in 2025! (ok, can I just say typing that number seems SOOO futuristic?!?)
Morning Pages. Over the last 20 years, I’ve done this practice, habit, ritual–it is a bit of them all– on and off, primarily on. It’s a great brain dump on waking up and a helpful way to work out problems in my writing, teaching, relationships–any part of my life, really. After a different morning writing practice for about 18 months, this year I’m back at the morning pages and enjoying them.
Ok, this is one more than three (and it’s Thursday, not Friday, which would alliterate with four and be far more clever than, say, Four on Thursday), but I’ve got the picture up there, so I have to connect to it, right? Hand stitching. I’ve been embroidering every day since the start of the year, but I have also been trying to add in some other daily stitching–knitting, crochet, hand sewing…anything to give me a moment of creative peace as I finish out my day.
How about you? What rituals, habits, practices do you find yourself enjoying?
There’s so much to love about February: my sister and I celebrate our birthdays, the slog to spring seems manageable, the extra minutes of daylight finally seem to make a true difference. And since it’s Three on Thursday time, here are three more things to love in February:
This weekend is the Great Backyard Bird Count! Citizen science rocks my world, and this is one of my favorite activities to support science!
Our witch hazel is blooming–the first flowers of the year in our yard.
The extra day this year (and month) falls on a Saturday, which has led me to declare Leap Day is going to be a day to explore things I rarely make time for, especially smack dab in the middle of the semester. I’ve got some plans cookin’!
What are you loving in February? What (and who) ever you’re loving, I hope you have a festive Valentine’s Day and terrific weekend!