Tuesday, October 20, 2009


Very early in the morning for me to write a post. But when you're moved to do it, you must move, mustn't you? Don't hesitate. Just do.

My house smells like Christmas, the wonderful aroma of cinnamon, cloves, and allspice, all mixed together. I made my speculaas last night, a Dutch Christmas cookie that I always make at Christmas time. I'm getting in the mood early. My open house is definitely going to be the pre-Christmassy party I wanted it to be. A few days ago I made shortbread cookies, another one of my Christmas traditions.

This morning my thoughts have been turning, as they have quite often lately, to what I'm going to do after this open house. Yes, I've got Living Room work to do. But what am I going to do that's creative? What am I going to do to balance my life so I'm not just doing mental health work?

I've also been thinking of how I will make Christmas the happy experience it should be. How am I going to avoid depression this year? And the answer I've come up with is that I need to think creatively about what I can give. What can I do to give to others to make their life better? If I can stop thinking about what Christmas will do to me and think of it as an opportunity to creatively give in some way, I think it will be more than bearable. In fact, I will love it.

My prayers have been full this morning of requests to God to lead me into a creatively lived Christmas season - a wanting to do good things, not feeling I have to live up to certain standards. A looking forward to...not a dreading. I'm grateful for the good mood I have now and pray that it will continue. And prayer does help, doesn't it?


Wellness Writer said...

Dear Marja,
Your party sounds so nice, and isn't it nice that your house smells like Christmas without all the sad associations of depression?

In terms of creativity, have you considered getting back into photography? Whether you focus on children or some other subject, you're so talented, and I'm assuming it's a wonderfully creative outlet for you.

In terms of my plan for Thanksgiving and Christmas this year, I've decided that my husband, son, dog, and I will go to Santa Barbara (one of my favorite places) for Thanksgiving. I'm going to make the reservations today.

And, I'm researching a driving trip to visit relatives in Austin, Texas, for the Christmas holidays. Maybe new vistas with different relatives might be just the answer for me.

Just wanted to share.


shawnalyne said...

Amen! It does!

marja said...

Hi Susan,

Actually, I've been doing loads of photography. The party I'm having is the culmination of a big effort: making ca 175 notecards, 20 bookmark designs (8 or more copies of each design) and 27 framed prints. These will all be for sale at the open house. It's a fundraiser for a church ministry.

I also photographed a toddler a few weeks ago. Just delivered the prints last weekend.

I have some other ideas for things to do after the open house. I might try some more drawing and painting. Also, I'd like to further prepare for Christmas. I'm looking forward to looking forward to it for a change.

I think what I need to do is not worry so much about what I'm going to get out of it, but rather what I can give through it. What can I put into it? I'll see how that works out.

Your plans sound good too. It's all about changing the focus, isn't it?


marja said...


Good to hear your enthusiasm. Thanks for being there.


mmaaggnnaa said...

Hi, Marja -

A wise person once told me that the best way to get away from uncomfortable feelings is to take steps to make someone else feel more comfortable.

It sounds like that is what you are doing!

I'm so excited about your party! Keep us posted!

- Marie (Coming Out of the Trees)

marja said...

Thanks, Marie. That's what happens when you get older, like me, you get wiser about stuff. It's not so bad getting older. (Proud to be 63 1/2)

- marja