I’ll bet you didn’t expect a Mindfulness Monday post this week, did you? If you’ve been following my mindfulness journey, you probably know that last week, I decided not to go any further with the meditations in the book. As I said last week, though, mindfulness is not just about meditation; it’s about being fully present NOW.
This week as I was trying to get my Christmas decorations up and making my to-do list for all the things I need to do, I realized that as much as I love Christmas, for the last few years from the week before Thanksgiving until Christmas day has been just one big blur of “getting through.” I went from one thing to the next, praying for strength to just get through this next event, chore, whatever, and I didn’t take the time to really stop and appreciate the small joys each day brings.
I decided that this year, I’m not going to let that happen. For a time of year that I love so much, I can’t let it become just a list of to-do’s or get-throughs. Between the decorating, baking, traveling, and hosting, I am going to take the time to really savor the sights, sounds, smells, feelings, the memories we’ve made and the memories we’re going to make — everything about the Christmas season. This week, I really took the time to enjoy the decorations I put up. They’re nothing fancy; in fact they’re a mishmash of everything we’ve collected over the years, but almost all of them hold some very special memory.
This nativity is the one decoration that is dearest to my heart because it’s a physical reminder of why I celebrate Christmas — the birth of our Savior. This set is over 25 years old – it came from Home Interior way back in the day, and other than having to glue the shepherd’s face back on due to an unfortunate accident many years ago, I think it’s held up remarkably well.
This is part of my newer nativity set that we have in our family room. I’ve been looking at the Willow Tree nativity sets for years, but they were always so expensive I just never got one. Thanks to Amazon, I was able to buy it a few pieces at a time. Now it spreads across almost the whole mantle and I love it!
These two remind me of the time I spent in the country of Turkey. The first year we were there, we had severe flooding in November. Somehow one of the drainage pipes on the roof of our apartment building got stopped up and even though we lived on the fourth floor our apartment got flooded. Almost all of our tree ornaments were ruined, so we had to start over. This bell and bird were some of the first we bought.
I painted these guys over 15 years ago. I don’t know exactly why I’m so attached to them, but they just make me smile every time I look at them. It’s probably because I did these while my son was still fairly young and excited about Christmas.
Sometimes mindfulness can be something as simple as being intentional about how you go about your day, how you pay attention to what’s going on around you, or how you make observations without judgement. This year, I intend to be more mindful each day so that this “most wonderful time of the year” doesn’t pass me by without me noticing.
Do you have any day-to-day mindfulness practices? Please share!