That’s over with.
And it is all a blur . . .

Am I talking, specifically, about . . .
(a) The Holidays?
(b) The Advent Calendar?
(c) The Root Canal?
(d) The Blog Break?
(e) All of the Above?

And, yes. Of course. The answer would be (e).
All. Of. The. Above.

Maybe you remember that before I launched my advent calendar on December 1, I felt like I had run out of things to SAY here on the blog. Well. After essentially taking about 6 weeks away from “normal” blog posting, I now have P-L-E-N-T-Y of things to tell you about! So much pent up blog fodder! A plethora of potential posts.

But today, I’ll start with this . . .

“Begin as you mean to go on . . . “

I hear this phrase all the time as the new year rolls around. I’m really not a superstitious type, so I don’t actually believe that there’s really anything TO that phrase, but it is a nice notion for the start of a new year. It’s so very . . . open to interpretation. I like to think of it applying to our lives in very broad strokes. As in . . . I’m hoping to pay attention to my health, so I’ll begin the new year by going for a walk and eating a healthy meal. Or . . . I’m hoping to spend time making things in the new year, so I’ll begin by casting on a new project. That kind of begin-as-you-mean-to-go-on.

And it’s all well and good. If the beginning of your new year is relatively . . . calm. And flexible. And you have some control over what you’re doing.

But what if . . . you’re beginning the year with something unpleasant that you can’t really do anything about. Like, say . . . a root canal? Because, well. Surely no one wants to “go on” with more dental work, y’know? Or any low-level, pre-root canal stress-and-dread leading up to the procedure. NOT my idea of a good way to begin anything, let alone a whole new year.

But that was me.

Luckily, like I said, I’m not superstitious, so I know I’m not doomed to a year of dental dread and anxiety just because my new year started out that way. But it did get me thinking. Because we can’t always “begin as we mean to go on.” I mean, sometimes we begin the year with something crappy; something we really can’t control. Impending dental work or medical procedures. Or the flu. Sadness. Grumpiness. Sickness. Overwhelm. There are so many ways we would prefer . . . not to go on with.

So. First of all, let’s just stop with the pressure to start-as-we-mean-to-go-on. Or, at least as it applies to New Year’s Day. Because . . . we can actually start-as-we-mean-to-go-on ANY old day. New Year’s Day is not magical. We can “start” anything on any day we choose! (In fact, the original quote by Charles H. Spurgeon was this: “Begin as you mean to go on, and go on as you began, and let the Lord be all in all to you.” It didn’t have anything to do with the new year, and everything to do with, well . . . a more biblical interpretation.)

Further, if your new year didn’t quite start the way you’d hoped it might, and you’re feeling kind of bad about it, well. Just try reframing! For me, I realized (as I was sitting in the dentist chair), that I was beginning the new year . . . By caring for my health. By being brave. By trusting a trained professional to take care of me. By keeping my sense of humor in spite of a crappy situation. By resting and recovering.

It could be a lot worst than that when it comes to starting-as-I-mean-to-go-on.


Okay. So maybe you’re wondering where I got that blurred shot at the top of this page?
Or maybe not.
But it’s a pretty funny story, so here goes . . .

I make it a point to not blog about people I don’t know (or even people that I do know) and places that are not mine to share ever. But I decided I’d make an exception last month. Sadly, I lost my nerve and had a major camera fail. So all you get are . . . blurry photos.

Anyway. My neighborhood puts together a pretty good showing when it comes to Christmas lights. Some of my neighbors go a bit . . . over-the-top and crowd their yards with all manner of things. Some are more minimalist (me included). Some even go as far as having professionals install their displays (I know. . . ).

And then . . . we have the Leg Lamp House!

I absolutely apologize for the quality of this photo. It was dark. I was using my phone. They could see me out there. I was sheepish about taking pictures of someone else’s house. Although I would argue that anyone who puts up TEN Leg Lamps (count ’em. . . there are TEN!) (don’t miss the two outdoor Leg Lamps on the front porch) WANTS to be noticed; is BEGGING to be noticed. AmIright?

Anyway. EVERY front window of their house sports a full size Leg Lamp (plus the two on the porch).

I mean . . . this is Total Commitment To A Theme.

When I could see I was incapable of taking a decent photo of the spectacle (and it truly IS a spectacle), I put my phone back in my pocket . . . and got the blurred shot you see at the top of this post. Just think of it as hundreds of shining Leg Lamps! (Because that is what it is.)

(And if you’re my neighbors and these are your Leg Lamps and you happen to be reading this . . . well. I hope you won’t mind my sharing your most spectacular light display. Your Leg Lamps bring me such joy! I drive by/walk by every chance I get, and I direct all my visitors past your house, too.)