My gosh, I can't believe how close Christmas is! Normally we do a round trip to Brisbane and back to Toowoomba on Christmas day, but we're thinking of spending it at home this year. I've read some great ideas for alternative Christmas plans, and I like the idea of not making it about gift giving. I'd rather have a big meal with family, talking about our year gone and plans for the next one.
I must admit, I have a dream that one Christmas we will feed the family on what we grow in the garden. Probably not going to happen this year, but hopefully it'll be closer next year!
Since this is a Reflections post however, I would like to start a new year's resolution list that I've been contemplating during the past month.
1. Keep working on the garden with a sense of achievement. I saw a butterfly land on our lemon tree recently to lay an egg. To me this is an achievement. Not because we built the retaining wall the lemon tree is planted above, or because of buying the plant and putting it in the ground. The achievement comes in seeing it be embraced by the natural systems around it. As a gardener, that butterfly paid me the ultimate compliment by choosing to lay it's eggs on our lemon tree.
2. Keep plodding along despite the economic hardships. Every morning I hear the rooster crow and see the finches swooping on the back lawn for breakfast, I am reminded that where there is life, there is hope. No-one asks the finches where they will find their food or sleep for the night, but they KEEP returning every morning to find their bounty and sustainance. The animals here have so much to teach us about perseverence.
3. Make my kitchen the nerve centre of the home. I struggle a bit with my kitchen. It's a gorgeous, open space in which wonderous meals can be cooked. But I don't lavish the appreciation on it which I should. I don't think I've organised it very efficiently. This will be one of my projects to accomplish next year - starting now, by getting my pantry in order.
4. Find joy in my husband's smile and in our mistakes. It's not hard to look around our place and remember the moment Dave and I decided to build something. Although some wouldn't notice it, we do recognise the mistakes made along the way and how we can do it better next time. In all our struggles building stuff, I have to say it's been my husband's sense of humour in the face of Rome falling down around our feet, that I remember the most. At the time I don't think I appreciated it, but when I look around now I see that quirky smile looking back at me, somehow knowing it would all turn out alright in the end. I want to appreciate that smile more in the moment, than in hindsight.
5. Learning to borrow rather than have. This has been one of my biggest realisations of late. It occured to me if I suddenly died tomorrow, I couldn't take the house or land with me. I couldn't take the fruit trees or the hard work. That's when it dawned on me that I didn't "have" the Bushland project, rather I was borrowing it for a time. Somebody else will have to borrow it after us, and so on and so forth. I want to learn to approach more things in life as a borrowed work to be passed on to someone else - because the "having" part is really a selfish work for the ego. Like the native animals I see constantly borrowing the land for a season, I too want to mimic them and not "have" it for myself.
This is just a very small list which I'm sure will grow well into next year. Hopefully, like our vegie patch!