Sunday, January 9, 2011

New Year's Inventory

At ten days into the new year, I thought it might be time to see how I did on the resolutions I made the previous two years.

Last Year's Resolutions were based on the verse my daughter M. has tattooed on her wrist.: 
To wonder at beauty
stand guard over truth
look up to the noble
resolve on the good

I think it's the first thing I've been the best at. Beauty, it seems to me, is everywhere. If my eyes are open and I'm paying attention, there's always something to wonder at.

As for the truth, I try to think it and say it. And write it.

The noble, when one can find it, is easy to look up to.

As for resolving on the good, I suppose the phrase has a couple of interpretations. I don't always see the good in a given situation. I'm prone to complaining about the bad part of things. The downside often captivates my attention.

In 2009 I resolved to:
1) finish my MFA---check! 
2) keep in touch with friends---I don't think I did particularly well with this one. In fact, I completely failed completely in some cases.
3) work harder at what I need to learn---My brain still has a lot of teflon-coated spots.
4) tell my children I love them every time I see them and in every phone conversation---More often than not, I succeed at this. It's really not hard to remember.
5) Call my mother more often and visit her at least 4 times a year---I only made it to the east coast 3 times in 2009. But one of those visits when on for weeks because my mother suffered complications when she had a tumor removed from one of her lungs. I did better in 2010 with 5 visits.

This year I resolved to say thank you whenever it's due and to be more attentive to my friends. I started on New Year's Eve by giving the friends I saw that night a bookmark I made. The message I wrote on it is this:

 I raise my glass to you, and on my lips are sighs of thanks.
Thank you for the tea and roses, for red wine and your company, for beer in green glass bottles--in your living room by the fire, in the shade of your patio, walking next to you on a path as parrots call overhead.
Thank you for the phone calls and invitations and patience and words of encouragement or for just listening.
I believe fervently in love as a force beyond all imagining. I believe I have been borne across deep rivers in your arms.
In 2011 I will call you more often than you call me. I will cook, lay feasts upon my table and bid you to eat. I will fill your glass as you have filled my heart.

I hope to have a little dinner party every month or so. Or a bigger party. 
We've got to drink up this champagne.


Elizabeth said...

Since I missed the party, may I have a bookmark? And when is your birthday? And, finally, can we have lunch more often together?

Jules said...

Where's my bookmark?
Never mind, just let's think about the lunch thing...
Your place or mine?

And next time in Arizona, check out high tea at the Biltmore
with your eldest grand-daughter

Anonymous said...

I came here from Elizabeth, she thought I could use the support. The bookmark that you wrote, beautiful.