1. 27 Wild(er) Days with Laurie Wagner, my teacher and dear friend. “I’m bringing the Wild Writing practice to you at home through a series of short videos that will arrive in your inbox each day for 27 days. In each video I will share some delicious aspect of the practice that has served me for the last 30 years, as well as read you a poem and give you a jump off line to get you started. From there you’ll write for 15 minutes, and then boom, you’re done.” Laurie is offering this self-paced Wild Writing opportunity at a discount — from January 3 – 7, you pay only $27 (on the 8th, the price goes back to $49). Also from Laurie, Twenty Four Tamales For Christmas and a Few Things You Learn Along the Way.
2. Stressed? Instead of distracting yourself, try paying closer attention. “When something sad, stressful or hurtful happens, so many of us look for a way to distract ourselves from the ensuing pain and discomfort. It may seem counterintuitive, but an effective way to manage our negative reactions to life’s stressors actually involves slowing down and paying very close attention, says Jon Kabat-Zinn, the founder of mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR).”
3. Why Therapists Are Worried About Mental Health in America Right Now on The New York Times. “The Times recently asked mental health professionals from across the country to share how their patients — and they themselves — are coping with the coronavirus crisis.”
4. How volunteering can help ease loneliness on The New York Times.
5. Resolutions for a Life Worth Living: Attainable Aspirations Inspired by Great Humans of the Past. “Life-tested wisdom on how to live from James Baldwin, Ursula K. Le Guin, Leo Tolstoy, Seneca, Toni Morrison, Walt Whitman, Viktor Frankl, Rachel Carson, and Hannah Arendt.”
6. Good stuff from Seth Godin: Choice vs. convenience and Don’t waste the good days. That second one in particular hit me hard. I’m trying so hard to allow for that kind of focus, to shift my effort in that way, but it is HARD, (or rather I make it hard).
8. From respair to cacklefart – the joy of reclaiming long-lost positive words. “We have been bombarded with negativity recently; but the English language is a treasure trove of joyous vocabulary.”
9. Merry Christmas, Happy New Year: A Stop-Motion Music Video Tells the Warm and Fuzzy Story of Woodland Friends. In related news, A Moving Stop-Motion Short Reveals the Power of a Family’s Cooking Traditions.
10. Wisdom from J Clement Wall: “Maybe the lesson to learn from the year that has passed is one that we all already now. We have to make this moment count. No matter what came before, or what happens tomorrow, we have to live the moment we’re in, yeah? Pick north in this moment. Be kind, be mindful, make art, hold hands, be proud, be happy, be sad in this moment. Then do it again a gazillion times because our lives are made of these moments and nothing more. They are what we have. They are everything.”
11. A New Year’s Blessing on Lion’s Roar. “Zen teacher Karen Maezen Miller offers some words to help us all start the year off right.”
12. Wisdom from Elizabeth Mattis Namgyel: “Let’s be fierce in our commitment to value and utilize even the most challenging circumstances as a way to deepen our understanding and cultivate compassion for others as well as ourselves. Let’s continuously find creative and skillful ways to serve living beings and this precious planet, our home, and look at life around us as the rich ground for awakening from self-absorption. If we can do this, how can we possibly lose?”
15. Writer’s Resolution, 2022: The Necessary Act Of Selfishly Seeking Joy from Chuck Wendig on Terrible Minds.
19. Moments of joy from 2021 from NPR. “It’s true, 2021 was not easy — but moments of joy, humor and appreciation were as much a part of the past year as were its challenges. In case you missed them, take a listen to some of our more fun and relaxing moments of 2021.”
21. 10 Insightful Tips From People Who Prove It’s Never Too Late on The New York Times.
22. The Dogs of 2021 (video) on Instagram.
23. The guerilla gardeners of TikTok. “When green space became essential during the pandemic, these intrepid gardeners realized there wasn’t enough of it.”
24. Nine Badass Black Women Who Are Changing the Workout Game. In related news, When it comes to exercise, ‘all movement counts.’ Here are 4 tips to make it a habit and Sometimes You Have to Hate Exercise Before You Can Love It Again on The New York Times.
26. Melding Two Crafts, Caroline Harrius Embroiders and Cross-Stitches Ceramic Vessels. Using various methods of non-traditional stitching/sewing to make art is my current obsession.
28. The Most-Rejected Books of All Time (that eventually got published).
30. This Year, Try a New Approach to Wellness. Because this: “Something that I’ve been thinking about lately is just how different we all are. We are all at vastly different places in our lives and in our journeys with our bodies, food, self-care, etc. And the process of learning how to best care for our bodies, minds, and spirits is long, complex, and unique to us.
The truest truth I’ve found is that we’ve got to experiment. We’ve got to try things on and feel them out in our own bodies and minds. I believe that the process of learning how to listen to our intuition is the key to this. We do have deep wisdom within us and it can guide us if we let it. ” Amen.
31. Recipe I want to try: Marry Me Cookies.
34. On the Years When Jane Austen Couldn’t Write. “An Illustrated Look at the Effects of Worry and Uncertainty on a Literary Icon.”