IMG_3286 New year overview 0801

I am good at knowing what needs to done, even when it’s none of my business. Like how a hotel could be more friendly, how a store could be more efficient, how a church could be truer to it’s calling, how a relationship could be better, an organization more cost effective or a house better organized. Easy, and as I have experience and knowledge in all these fields, I could even be right.
I am not good at waiting to be asked though, as I seem to think the rest of humankind is different from myself and want unsolicited advice as soon as they stumble a small step form the ideal course I think they should stay on.

Then, when I see my own life from a distance, like from the other side of the world, things become clearer, failings more visible, actions more important, in short, an overview makes me think I have more then enough to improve in my own life.

It does not make what I believe others could do less important, it just makes me sure that the best kind of overview is when we take time ourselves to step aside, just for a moment, and remember the big picture. Not so much the how as the why. If that is the reason for our new years resolutions, we have to make them. If our resolutions is just adjusting steps, tweaking and polishing without really knowing or caring where we are going, then we might as well not care. If we do not know where we are heading, or where we want to go it does not really matter does it?

Happy trails!

We have been living in a fairytale for a year, today we are leaving, going back to Norway. New job, new and old obligations.Things do do, expectations and possibilities.

It is sad to leave, but great to take only good things and blessings back from a whole year. To be able to say, this has been a year with only happy memories, marvelous!

And then, it is truly a blessing to have a good life to return to.
IMG_3277 to leave it 9januar

Ninehundred and twenty, a sobering thought on stuff

Los Angeles stuff

Los Angeles stuff

I hate to drive, in traffic that is. I love to drive on tranquil mountain roads, with no one about and where I can turn over and take pictures wherever I want to.

I hate noise too. I love to sit peacefully in my car and have hours for thinking, singing, praying and talking to myself. So if there was a way to go from Santa Barbara to Los Angeles without seeing other cars, without hearing other noises, in peace, I would do it, at once. As it is, it isn’t.

So I drove down to Gardena yesterday to pick up my husband who was taking his motorcycle down to have it shipped to Norway. As I was there I handed in the papers for our household goods too, and sat down with my diary while waiting for him.

I guess it was the time and place that induced these sobering thoughts in my mind. I was going to ship 20 boxes, what we had accumulated this year. When we lived in Indiana it was 32, from the Netherlands it was also more than thirty.

When we married 32 years ago, we had next to nothing, well perhaps 10 boxes each. I remember sitting on one of them looking around in our empty apartment when the doorbell rang. Our first-floor neighbor had seen what we carried into the house and told us there was a stove we could have in the basement, if we wanted to. It worked fine, then we got an old sofa and we were good. For a while. We are not spendthrifts, but things keep being needed. Allowing for 10 boxes for the four children and ten each for Stig and me, it would add up to 920 boxes over these years, at this pace. Of course neither cars, motorcycles,beds,stoves nor sofas stay in their boxes, but you get the picture, a continuous stream of stuff.

To be taken care of, washed, polished, mended, looked after, moved and replaced, and to be used, 920 boxes or thereabout. Even worse, if I literrally boxed it all, and placed it on a big floor, the air would be filled with items fluttering and flying from box to box or just playing around. As we kept the big stuff out of this equation, one could easily say that each 6 cubic feet box had 50 things in it. Which in short would say that we are trying to find our way among 4600 items moving more or less aimlessly about.

The truth is still some boxes apart from this nightmare, and yet…even if I keep recycling, reusing, giving away and take care, it all boils down to this:
I hate to drive as the traffic is so heavy, and I pay people to add to the traffic by moving my boxes, by buying, by having it made.
I love silence, but make somebody else suffer traffic noises and add to them so that I can have my stuff.
Somewhere and somehow this does not add up.

Seems there are room for many new year’s resolutions, I just need some peace to think it through. Perhaps I should go for a drive?

life without stuff?

life without stuff?

Who’s there?

These last weeks have been weeks of extreme tides, King Tides. It happens when the orbit of the moon, the pull of the water, the equinox of the sun, the tilt of the earth all work together at their most extreme. Thanks to Linda, who told me about this, I have been wandering and marveling in the low tides for days.

At the average tides, I can sit on the shore and watch dolphins, whales, seals and pelicans. Now, they are further out, but I get to see why they love to roam close to shore. Teeming myriads of sea anemones, sea urchins, cliffs covered in shell and schools of tiny fish. But only at the extreme stress of king tides.

Perhaps it is like that for humans too? At times of extreme stress, the tiny, but vital and real motivators come out in the light. We are on the edge of a tide now, with moving overseas, with me establishing my new firm, with my husband getting back to work, and all other obligations that needs to be handled.

We are doing fine though. I think part of it is because we have learned through 30 years together that these periods of transition is just that. Not who we are, or want to be, but who we are when we are vulnerable, exposed and really out of our element. As with the tide pools. What we see are not meant to be seen, what we see are life forms struggling for their life, gasping in the air, longing for water. Fascinating, yet to be treated with utmost care.

The lesson of the tide pool will be my New Year Resolution this year. Not only to go with the flow, but to look for who we are when  we are at our best, to forgive, to understand. But most of all, to marvel at the resilience and the amount of stress we are able to go through…..as long as the water will flow back, life returns to normal, and the tide will stay within its limits, one day.

IMG_3354 tidepool wide 7januar

On the twelfth night of Christmas

IMG_0091 5.januar

Now it is time for Christmas in Russia. The mightiest singers we ever heard were the Moscow patriarcate, the twelve singers filled every nook of our big cathedral in Trondheim. A year ago we got to visit Russia ourselves and hear several wonderful singers, the harmonies are different, you can hear the wind howling, the snow blowing and the softest whisper of the grass growing on the tundra.

Over Christmas I will share the words of my favorite Christmas songs and my favorite winter pictures.
All pictures at Indexyourlife are mine, if not otherwise stated.

On the eleventh day of Christmas

IMG_0158 ladeste

Mine are riches from your poverty

from your innocence, eternity

Mine, forgiveness by your death for me

Child of sorrow, for my joy

We went to Royal Albert Hall for a concert and got a surprise, singalongs and a choir of 500 singers from the whole country, it was uplifting and fun! We sang gospel music, the audience in this video got to sing the great tune and profound words in Calypso carol!

Over Christmas I will share the words of my favorite Christmas songs and my favorite winter pictures.
All pictures at Indexyourlife are mine, if not otherwise stated.

On the tenth day of Christmas

IMG_1125 3.januar

One day at the time
Tomorrow may never be mine

Listen as Tennesee Ernie Ford puts our new years resolutions in perspective, not really a Christmas song, but a simple tune for every day.

Over Christmas I will share the words of my favorite Christmas songs and my favorite winter pictures.
All pictures at Indexyourlife are mine, if not otherwise stated.

On the ninth day of Christmas

IMG_1104 2.januar

This Flow’r whose fragrance tender with sweetness fill the air,
Dispels with glorious splendor The darkness everywhere.

True Man yet very God;
From sin and death he saves us and lightens every load

Stay quiet and listen while Tuva Syvertsen sings “Det hev ei rose sprunge” or “Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming”

Over Christmas I will share the words of my favorite Christmas songs and my favorite winter pictures.
All pictures at Indexyourlife are mine, if not otherwise stated.