Monday, November 16, 2009

calm + bright

2008 dec daily collage, originally uploaded by jmk photos.
I'm about ten days away from starting my 2009 holiday daily book. It's ready to go, and all my supplies are assembled in one pile (well, maybe two or three piles to be honest).

I first learned about this idea from Ali. Her idea is this: document each day from December 1-25. Keep it simple. Focus on images and words. Create the book and base pages ahead of time. Gather your supplies. Enjoy the process and the season.

Last year I decided to create one of these albums. A few photos of it are pictured above. I didn't create the foundation or gather my supplies beforehand, however, and I quickly learned a lesson for this year: make the base ahead of time. It equals more fun time thinking about one day at a time.

My 2008 album documented Dec 1-30. I learned another lesson: I'm more interested in the month before Christmas. It will always include my birthday (Nov 25) and most of the time Thanksgiving as well (which is my most favorite holiday).

The most important lesson I learned was how to more fully appreciate and give thanks for this time of year. Although I've dramatically reframed my view of being single over the past few years, I still struggle a bit with being single from Thanksgiving to New Year's. Making time for creativity and reflecting on the gift of each day in December made an incredible difference in holiday experience last year. I realized there are some traditions this family of one would like to keep honoring, and that there is room for new surprises if I am present and open to them. The discipline of really observing each day carried on into the rest of 2009. And I'm grateful for that. I highly recommend a project like this. It can be in any form. . .a blog. . .from re-purposed paper. . . with a lot of glitter. . . with all pictures, or with one. . . from whichever dates you'd like during the season. . .with whatever words you feel like writing. I felt such a sense of accomplishment and creative awe as I read my 2008 pages a week ago. For that alone it was worth taking the time to smear some glue stick over paper.

So, my new 2009 little holiday book is ready to go for November 25. . . and it will help me with another creative project I have in store for the next year of my life. More to come on both next week.

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