The temptation to make a matrix is almost overwhelming, but it is possible to over-engineer these things!! So, let's just go and see how it develops!
Our year was filled with many blessings, and I can think of no better way to start this than to give thanks for my rock, my partner in crime, the guy who puts up with my many foibles with a knowing grin. 2021 marked 30 years of marriage, and the adventures continue - hiking, skiing, camping, traveling.
Together with Man with Hat, I logged 105 miles of hiking, including three back-country camping trips. Trust me when I say it was downright difficult to choose one picture that represents the beauty, solitude and glory of Montana. In the end, I chose a photo that was taken by my nephew the day before we started our epic back-country camping trip in the Belly River. The picture below is in Glacier National Park - Hidden Lake with Bearhat Mountain in the background.
Did I mention 2021 was filled with blessings? In early August, #1 Son received the long-awaited news: he landed a job, a nuclear engineering position within the Idaho National Laboratory. I jumped up and down for joy; he has been in job search mode since May 2020, and all of us were thrilled for him that his patience and perseverance paid off! On December 21, just in time for Christmas, he was informed that his security clearance came through and that he would start work on January 17. Praise God!
It is inevitable, with adult children, that they will develop lives of their own, and family vacations get more challenging to arrange. So, we jumped on the chance to be together in Santa Fe in October. Each of us had our favorite aspect of the trip - Bandelier National Monument for Spousal Unit and me, Los Alamos for #1 Son, Mexican food almost every night for The Boyfriend.
But I think it is safe to say that the trip will be forever remembered as the site of The Engagement!
2021 was not all wine and roses. On April 28, my Mom went to heaven. I was so fortunate to spend time with her a couple of weeks before she died, and it was cathartic to write this post in her memory. Since then, she often crosses my mind. I miss her, and it makes me sad that she won't be here to see #1 Daughter get married. Mom, I love you, and I take some consolation in knowing you are watching over all of us!
One of my brothers had a heart attack in November, and I traveled to Ohio to visit him in the hospital. He is home now, but has a long road to recovery. Maybe it's an inescapable aspect of getting older, or maybe it is down to COVID, but it seems we hear more frequently about friends and family with serious illnesses, or worse. As I wrote in my December 5 post, "Life is not simple, or predictable. At any moment, life can turn upside down. I can't take any pleasure in the fact that it's someone else who is in the hospital, but I can count my blessings every day."
With that in mind, I turn my attention to 2022. How will I make the most of this year that lies in front of me like freshly fallen snow, untracked and ready to be explored? Some things are given, such as reveling in time with my Dear Neighbor Friend - skiing, walking, kayaking or chit-chat over a coffee.
I will probably do some cross-stitch. At last count, I have one project underway and at least six others to choose from! I also hope to try my hand at Spanish Blackwork.
I will continue volunteering - the 63rd Whitefish Winter Carnival kicks off formally next weekend. You'll also find me at the North Valley Food Bank, the Whitefish Historical Museum and serving as co-leader of the Flathead Chapter of Citizens' Climate Lobby!
You can be sure I will be outdoors, whether it is in the garden, hiking or kayaking. Who knows what new critters we will see? Each year we get a few surprises, such as the pygmy owl that crashed into our windows in June (and survived).
Sounds busy, doesn't it? Of course, contemplating a New Year is not just about WHAT we plan to do, but HOW we plan to do it. I thumbed through my prayer journal from the last 12 months, and the following words spoke to me: gratitude, faith, understanding, "do not be afraid", forgiveness, mercy, compassion, patience, discernment, good cheer, encouragement, letting go. A tall order, to be sure.
"Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around." LEO BUSCAGLIA
"If the will to walk is really present, God is pleased even with your stumbles." C.S. LEWIS
I hope and pray that, together, we can experience joy, thankfulness, compassion and good health throughout 2022. Happy New Year to you and yours!
Welcome to Mosaic Monday, a weekly meme where we get together to share our photo mosaics and collages.
Please include at least one photo mosaic/collage in your post.
The link will be open from 1 p.m. Sunday until 11 p.m. Tuesday (U.S. Mountain time).
Remember to add the link to your Mosaic Monday post and not the one to your blog.
Please link back to this post so that your readers will be able to visit and enjoy more wonderful mosaics; taking the MM blog button from my sidebar is an easy way to link back.
As host I will visit every participant and leave a comment so that you know I stopped by.
Please try and visit as many other blogs as you can, especially those that join in later, so that everyone's creativity can be appreciated fully.
Thank you for joining in today and sharing your mosaics with us.