the gift of time

This post was inspired by the Lula Louise free printable 2012 calendars - there is a beautifully designed series of three to choose from, and my close friends will be recipients of them, as I cannot think of a nicer New Year's gift! Last year, I had oodles of fun with the Lula Louise Sketch-It Calendar, which I filled in with collage. (As a side note, Lula Louise became one of my favourite blogs with this reversible tote pattern.)
But the topic of this post is time, and my musing has to do with the fact that I am feeling immense stress at this time trying to juggle my work obligations with socialising.
Connected to this are two problems:
(1) learning to take it easy (it can be hard to find the balance between accomplishing proper work, and yet doing so gracefully; hard to adapt the Chinese adage do more by doing less)
and (2) prioritising.
Time must be set aside for friends. I have written before about how my favourite scientist, J.C. Maxwell, found time to visit his ailing neighbours, while he was decoding the secrets of electromagnetism.  Maxwell had so much greater a mind than mine, this is why he can help me find my way.
When he visited his neighbours, as his mind unravelled - away from all his experiments - he would often come up with great ideas. He would detain his friends in the hall, chatting, unaware of the fact that he was holding open a door, and letting all the cold in, for which he would be scolded by the lady of the house (an anecdote committed to posterity in one of his poems). He just focused on getting on with good work, and being mindful and caring to those around him, like writing letters to his wife every day he was absent marking exams, rich with theological observations.
Today, I read the following advice: Attempt to let go of expectations and learn to share yourself with the world and the people who love you - leave the haters behind you
Time is a gift, we should impose no expectations on it.
It is a gift we are given, and like craftsmen, we have a choice of how we use it. When things look gloomy, we can use our imagination to shape it up - like what we do to an art project when we invent creative solutions to cover up our mistakes (and usually something better emerges). When things look gloomy, we can also remember our goals in life, like to not fall into the Wonderland-holes of negativity, but to magnify that which is wonderful - to share, and to bask in the gifts that other share, like this nifty calendar of Beth's.

Elements: calendars: Lula Louise;
glitter circle, stripy paper and bows: pugly pixel.

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