I see the posts on social media. The year of the rat. The year of the dragon. The year of the tiger. Over the last couple of years, I have selected a word to sit with me and guide me through the year. One year was music, another was joy.
Two years ago, inspired by my friend Jen Livengood, I had the year of flowers. On the first day of each month, I bought myself cut flowers. It was fun to go to the store and select a bouquet of flowers, most less than $10 and have them in my house. I love to live with plants and flowers, and having a vase of flowers on the kitchen table made me incredibly happy. I would enjoy them for a couple of weeks, and when they had wilted, throw them out and have a week or two where I missed them until the first of the month when it was time to get some more. I kept that resolution all year long. It was fun to mark the seasons by what flowers were available in my grocery store. The tulips come in the early spring, and by late summer, the giant sunflowers are available.
I decided that this year, 2021, is going to be the year of groundings. I need to feel grounded to the earth. Living next to a park and green space has helped, but I love to hike and didn’t do that last year, so I plan that in 2021. I moved to a new town and new university last year so continuing to get to know my new digs will help me feel grounded and put down roots. I also like the word groundings because it reminded me of when I was grounded in high school.
Being grounded in high school meant spending more time with my family at home, spending a whole Saturday cleaning out and organizing the closet, and having to find other ways to connect with people. I foresee some of that this new year as well.
Happy new year to you and yours; if you have a word that guides your year, share it with me in the comments.
I teach future art teachers at Emporia State University. Here is what is going on in my classes.