Season’s Wishes

In this season of endings and renewals, I’d like to offer my wishes that in each of us we see:

The End Of:

Hatred

Fear

Intolerance

Injustice

Cruelty

Hypocrisy

Want

Greed

Injustice

Despair

And the Renewal Of:

Wisdom

Understanding

Respect

Hope

Peace

Compassion

Justice

Rationality

Williamsburg, 2010

Williamsburg, 2010

Williamsburg, 2010

Williamsburg, 2010

May 2013 see us setting forth on a better path.

An End Of Year Thank You To My Readers

Well, I for one am not surprised—the world is still here. That’s not to say a meteor couldn’t strike in 2013, but I wouldn’t bet on it. Maybe now we can go about our lives and strive to make the upcoming year and those that follow the best they can be.

As I move toward my part in that goal, I’d like to start here by giving heartfelt thanks to my readers. I’ve now been blogging for just over a year, and I would never have made it this long without your help.

Thank you 2

Image credit: Microsoft clip art

Even though we haven’t met outside of cyberspace, I feel like I really know some of you because you leave lovely comments on my posts. Some of you have even reblogged them or shared them on other social networks. I can’t begin to tell you what a wonderful feeling that is. Despite my belief that Earth’s doom is eons away, I’m pessimistic about humanity’s long-term survival. But when I see so many wonderful comments from readers and the support we offer one another, some optimism creeps into my life. How could I not be thankful for that?

Other readers are more elusive. I know you’re here because my blog views show you are (despite WordPress eating so many of them with the Reader—even the “new” stats don’t show those). Of course, a few of those views are the result of dubious search-engine results. How a search for “俄罗斯,” which I learned is Chinese for “Russia,” brought someone to this blog is beyond me. I’m guessing the “silent” readers might be shy. Or they aren’t the commenting kind. That’s okay, I understand. I follow some blogs where I rarely, if ever, make my presence known. But whenever I see more views appearing in my stats, I’m thankful for those, too. Someone stopped to spend a few moments to read what I’ve written? How could I not be thankful for that?

It’s a busy time of year for many of us, so I’ll keep this short and close with hopes that the end of the year finds you happy and well. Thank you again for all of your support!

Williamsburg Wreath 2009

Williamsburg Wreath 2009

So The Dog Didn’t Eat My Blog Views — WordPress Did

Maybe you’ve noticed this. You upload a post and a few minutes later, the “likes” start coming in. But wait—your stats page doesn’t show any views for the post. Where did these “likes” come from?

Blog-savvy readers know the likes originate in the WordPress Reader. Readers can read posts and leave likes without leaving the Reader. (Wanna try saying that ten times fast?) Only if they comment will a view appear in your stats.

Excuse me, but this makes no sense. Continue reading

Stepping Out Of My Comfort Zone

It was my birthday this week. And there comes a point, when, as the day approaches, we ignore the number and instead reflect on where we’ve been and where we’re going. I think that’s the best time to make resolutions for the next year. To me, there’s something more personal and “obtainable” about the goals when they start on a meaningful day rather than an arbitrary one like New Year’s.

So earlier this month, that introspection set in. (Well, more than usual. Introverts are typically big on the introspection thing.) And my subconscious informed me it was time to step out of my comfort zone. “But how?” I asked.

You see, I’m not someone who’s good at making huge changes or decisions on the spur of the moment. (Although the decision to accept a job offer and move to Maryland 7 years ago was made in an afternoon….) I’m a good Libra that way, even though I don’t put any stock in astrology. But surely I could handle some tentative baby steps outside my normal box, right? Maybe get a fresh look on the world?

Maybe “steps” and “look” were literally the key. Because after years of buying walking shoes that looked like these:

Could these be any plainer?

And clothes with colors like these:

Could these colors be any “safer?”

I bought these new walking shoes:

And these new pants:

I may not know much about fashion and style, but I promise I won’t wear the new shoes with the new pants.

Some of you might laugh at such a small change. But it’s a big one for me. Bold colors attract the eye, and I’m not one to draw attention to myself. But today, I’ll wear these pants to DC. Will anyone notice? Point at me and laugh? I doubt it. But I’ll be thinking it. I’ll be stepping out of my comfort zone. Baby steps to be sure. But I’m taking them. It’s a start.

How about you? Can you try new things on the spur of the moment? Or do you need to think long and hard before you do?