This is how I spent the first day of 2019—

in the peace and quiet of my childhood home.

Since there were only four of us celebrating the new year's eve, my sister and I decided to just keep the celebration as simple and stress-free as possible: We ordered food instead of preparing a feast that would have taken six to eight hours to put together, and focused on what truly mattered—that we are meeting the new year together as a complete family albeit, virtually. We said our prayers of gratitude for the blessings and trials of 2018, as well as asked God for the accomplishments that we wish to make this 2019. We watched some of the fireworks and I went to sleep entangled in an embrace with my dearest daughter.

Being the first to wake up, I savored the calming atmosphere that the house evoked, sitting quietly to enjoy the quaint scents and sounds while brunching on some of the remaining cheese and crackers and fruits with some flavored merlot. Afterwards, I played with S, The Dog Who Lived, until my sister woke up and we shared a good hour conversing over more cheese and crackers. The house began to come to life as soon as the mini-adults woke up and we had lunch then a good long siesta. Then it was dinner. For one who has been dining out in restaurants and relying much on Honest Bee deliveries in the past year, a meal of rice, sardine misua, and fried bangus (milkfish) gave so much joy!

I spent the last few months purging old personal items, bad habits, and unhealthy beliefs while de-cluttering all my physical, mental, and emotional spaces. Doing these things helped me re-discover my strengths and my (long overdue) dreams, and what I would like to do with my life. Simplifying enabled me to be resolute about my plans and the choice to move forward while being kind to myself.

Simplifying is a way of life. By choosing to simplify, I am able to live life with mindfulness, truly present in the here and the now, and making the most out of a most priceless treasure called time.

So after an exciting year of #coloringoutsidethelines, I shall now embark on a more solid, quiet, and stable one with #simplify2019.

Happy New Year!

With love, Joyce