Our rainy winter weather here on the Central Coast brought forth a lovely springtime with gorgeous green hills and blooming flowers everywhere. Now here we are saying goodbye to spring, well almost because it ends June 20th, and waving hello to summer. This quarter has been a busy one, one full of learning, of waiting, of heartache, and of joy. Today I am joining Emily Freeman as she invites us to share the big and small lessons of the last three months. Here I go!
What I Learned This Spring:
1. I have a thing for the sky and find myself looking up all the time.
I often exclaim, “Look at the sky!” I scroll through the photos on my phone and see so many of clouds, sun rays, and blue skies!
2. I realized I feel better about my day if I write down things “I did” rather than a “to-do” list.
I learned this little trick, so as I go about accomplishing tasks, I write them down. I still have a mental list of what needs to be done (and I sometimes jot them down) but this way, I don’t berate myself for what I didn’t do, but rather see all that I accomplished.
3. Planning time for reading ensures it happens.
As my “to be read” book stack began to pile up, I wondered why I wasn’t reading often enough. I sat back and thought about my days/weeks, and a light bulb came on! If I didn’t make a plan in my day/week for reading, it would get pushed aside for more pressing matters or lazy nights of Netflix. However, reading is like a balm to my soul, and I knew I needed to allow more time for it to happen. I asked my husband what he thought of making Tuesdays and Thursday reading nights, and so it began. I am reading much more now. Here is what I read this spring: (Some of these books were advanced copies I received for book launches.)
- The Little Book of Hygge: Danish Secrets to Happy Living
- Coming Clean: A Story of Faith
- At Home in the World: Reflections on Belonging While Wandering the Globe
- The Magnolia Story
- The Sweet Life in Paris: Delicious Adventures in the World’s Most Glorious and Perplexing City
- Rhythms of Rest: Finding the Spirit of Sabbath in a Busy World
- A Family Shaped by Grace: How to Get Along with the People Who Matter Most
- Whispers of Rest: 40 Days of God’s Love to Revitalize Your Soul
I also noticed I only read non-fiction during the “school year.” I save up all the fictional books I want to read for summertime 🙂
4. Noise-canceling headphones are a lifesaver!
Because I am a highly sensitive person, I sometimes retreat to my office, close the door, put on my headphones, and listen to soft music. This is especially helpful when I am trying to write or concentrate. If I am on overload, any background noise such as the T.V., conversation, dogs barking, etc. can be bothersome. I use these wireless headphones and love them!
5. Jazz music is my jam.
Until my younger daughter began playing in a jazz band, I didn’t think I preferred this music genre, but now I listen to it often. I enjoy Smooth Jazz, Big Band, Contemporary, Latin, and Swing. We have attended quite a few concerts, and each time I am so impressed by the talent, the rhythms, the melodies, and the beautiful sounds of the different instruments.
6. The old guys knew a thing or two.
I added two new books to my morning routine that were written long ago. The first one, The Seeking Heart by Fenelon is comprised of beautiful selections of his teachings and letters written in the 17th century. The second one, The Valley of Vision, is a lovely collection of Puritan prayers and devotions. Both books are worth their weight in gold!
7. I want to keep my mind young.
“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.” Henry Ford
I have always known I will be a lifelong learner because I soak up new information like a sponge, but I wasn’t aware how excited I would still get when learning new information. I still thoroughly enjoy conferences, seminars, workshops, online tutorials, etc. In March
I attended a Preaching and Teaching Workshop taught by Christine Caine and also realized I learn best from passionate teachers.
8. I never expected I would enjoy listening to podcasts as much as I do.
I know that I am a visual learner so I always dismissed the podcasting trend, believing that it would not be something I could handle. Thankfully, I was wrong. I have gotten hooked on listening to them while I get ready in the mornings, while on longer drives, in the morning as part of my quiet time, or on a walk. Some of the podcasts I listen to are informative, some soul-filling, some are just for fun.
9. Making new, solid friends later in life is something I hadn’t anticipated.
Recently, I have made a few friends which I have grown very close to, and I didn’t see it coming. One has become very much like a sister, and the other is someone I can count on for an encouraging card or text at just the right time. Both are very dear to me, and I am so thankful my heart keeps expanding to love more and more.
Now it’s your turn! Tell me what you learned this spring in the comments below. I can’t wait to hear!