These ten questions, from Holley Gerth, have been a part of my new-year reflections for awhile now. As to why I'm posting about them now, in mid-April? I've mentioned a few times recently that I've been really slow musing on the year just past and am trying to do so before it's really too late. (Pretty sad, isn't it? It's already "really too late" in most people's thinking.) Again, if you don't want to hear even one more word about 2020, feel free to skip this post. I won't blame you one bit -- I'm just writing these posts for my own information and remembrance. Here we go:
1. What went well this year?
This was 2020, after all -- the year of the coronavirus, during which nothing went as expected. And yet we were still able to accomplish a lot in spite of it. While churches were closed, we developed a new Sunday routine which included a special, leisurely breakfast; Sunday School and worship service online and an afternoon routinely spent with family.
We also managed to fulfill some responsibilities (selling land for my dad's trust and getting his home completely emptied). We took a trip to national parks out West with family; did a lot toward making our little cottage livable; did two sugar fasts and a lot of walking; and took several lovely getaways here in New Hampshire, even including a couples' retreat.
|From our trip to some western national and state parks in summer 2020|
I was thrilled to be able to make a number of handmade gifts for birthdays and Christmas this year. I read over a dozen books (that's a lot for me!), kept up somewhat with my blogs, and stayed current with my Sunday School lessons and Bible study in addition to doing several Scripture writing challenges throughout the year.
|From our getaway to Deering, New Hampshire in October|
|Cleaning and then painting the kitchen cabinets at the cottage|
|Kids in the rafters as we worked at renovating our little cottage|
|From our getaway to Pittsburg, New Hampshire in September|
2. What did not go well?
Everyday life was somewhat frustrating, with coronavirus restrictions at every turn. Dental needs went by the wayside. For much of the year, thrift stores were not accepting donations; transfer stations (aka town dumps) had reduced hours; hazardous waste collections and document-shredding events were canceled. All of these factors complicated the cleaning out of my childhood home, but we were eventually able to do most of what we needed to do. I had also thought this might be the year we would declutter our own home once and for all, and be able to get the housework on a schedule, but with all of the complications mentioned above that didn't happen. Hopefully in 2021! We have a good start!
3. What do I want to do the same this year?
I need to sell a final piece of property for the trust. We want to do a lot of work on our cottage and we also hope to make fasting from sugar a more regular part of our lives. I hope to continue walking a lot. We had planned another trip out West to see family, and have in fact already completed that trip as of April 6.
|The main reason for this visit: baby Rosemary!|
|Family pic from the last night: local granddaughter Julia, who went with us, is at right|
4. What do I want to do differently?
I want to do more crafting and more reading. Completely declutter the house and get the housework on a workable schedule. Do much more blogging. Get much more serious with my Etsy shop. It takes time, but must be done.
5. When did I feel most in my "sweet spot"?
Sunday School lesson preparation and teaching; getaways with my hubby; time with family and friends; crafting, blogging, journaling, planning.
|Getaway to Back Lake, Pittsburg, NH|
| View from a covered bridge while visiting friends in Vermont|
|Another from our getaway to Deering, NH|
6. When did I feel the most exhausted and drained?
Dealing with difficult people and restrictions concerning the virus; coping with difficulties resulting from political fallout.
7. What did I say "yes" to that I wish I had said "no" to?
At first I couldn't think of anything. But then I remembered that photo shoot my son-in-law talked me and my hubby into, at Coral Pink Sand Dunes. I'm just not photogenic. Enough said. But the sand dunes, seen below, definitely are.
8. What did I say "no" to that I wish I had said "yes" to?
I couldn't think of anything in that category.
9. What helped me to stay close to God this year?
Having a consistent quiet time and prayer life. Relying on Him for wisdom and strength to handle the "pandemic".
10. What did God teach me that I want to live out in the coming year?
He reminded me that He is always in control -- that even when things look out of control, they never have been, and never will be, out of His control. I can trust Him through everything. I feel that He also taught me -- or maybe reminded me -- that relationships with Him, with my family and church family, and my friendships with fellow believers are incredibly important and take precedence over any government orders to the contrary.
So there you have it .. a few reflections on 2020. I do have one more post that I'd like to write on this topic, but we will see.