Sunday, January 2, 2011


Let's face it January sucks!  The holidays are over, the cold has set in, there just seems to be nothing to look forward to except a long stretch of winter.  This is the month I usually struggle the most.  It's been brutal in the past.  Long days of very little energy and depression so oppressive that it's all I can do to get out of bed. 

But for some reason a switch has flipped inside me this year. I have hope and lots of it.
There is a grittiness I feel inside...a resolve.  I have goals and projects to work on and I feel strangely happy:)

My theme words in the past have been "be" and "bloom". I went through a phase of trying so hard to be something that I was losing who I was entirely. Then this past Fall I felt God telling me there was a bloom a comin'. And I believe with all that's in me that I have bloomed. I had so much I wanted to achieve and birth forth and those things are coming to pass. Which is incredible.

When I think of what I want with this new year it is without thrive. I want to be healthy and at my best. I'll admit I'm a goal setter. Every year I make lists and vow to do this or that. They seem silly to most, but for me a goal is THE only way I achieve anything. If I'm not focused it does not happen.

I have goals to get more organized, take better care of myself, balance my time better, get on a routine, learn my camera...gain a little control. The only way to achieve any of those things is to stay focused and work at making new habits.  These cold dark days are a perfect time to put one foot in front of the other and see those lists become a reality.

So my question is...what do you want your word to be?  What hope can spring forth in this often difficult month??

Let's make a decision to beat January and decide to flourish, grow and THRIVE together!

Have a blessed day.

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  1. HOPE.
    it'd be a novel if I started trying to explain my we'll just leave it at ...I know that the Lord is producing the ability to HOPE in his deep work in my heart.

    I have felt so strong in some areas of my heart that I wasn't even sure if GOD himself could heal those areas.

    I have HOPE that he will.

  2. Becky, I love your word! And I think it could be the word that fits for my phrase . . . yes, I have a phrase this year! My goal is to "live life to it's fullest, filled with gratitude and a joyful heart". So, you see, that sounds like thriving, doesn't it! But I decided this year that a phrase was less limiting than a word!

    And I have to say, I love January because there are fewer things going on, the weather is yucky, and I get to spend many more precious hours in my studio, creating, and that makes me happy!

    Happy New Year, Becky in GA

  3. AAAH! You had me with the red barn! That scene looks so entirely magical. Hope you had a beautiful holiday!

  4. what a fun day in the snow you all had. great photos becky. love the one of you with the beautiful red barn in the background. i hope 2011 brings you many blessings and great joy. xo.

  5. Love this post, and love this word! I was just writing yesterday about that melancholy January feel. I don't want it to seep into my soul this year. mid Jan. - mid. Feb. is my worst time. I'm trying to embrace the cold this year, keep heading to the gym, and keep my little brain tackling projects inside the is to thriving in 2011!

  6. Becky, first of all I think you are making great use of your new camera. :-)

    What do I want to be? Well, sometimes I JUST want "to be". I asked that question years ago in a meeting where people were tasked with helping me and others grow spiritually. Lame? Maybe. But that's a question I've never forgotten.
    While I KNOW Christ wants us to grow. Goodness the tree image is all over His Word. At the same time sometimes I simply want to rest and meditate and listen. Maybe that time is growth? Probably.

    I'm recovering from a week of no sleep and 1100 college students so I'll have to think of your question more.

    Have a blessed sabbath.... I'm in my pj's about to listen to my church on livestream. How very 2011 of me. :-)

  7. Thrive...I like that. And your images are winter and pristine and such beauty!

    I do believe you are thriving.

  8. Usually my January word is "Survive". I want to do more then survive this year. I want January to feel memorable and accomplished. I will force myself out of bed early every day.

  9. Becky I love this word for you! You are thriving, we can all see it :) I love your photography, I can see the change. You are capturing moments and they are precious.

    My word for this year is Hope.


  10. Becky, I have been on this same path recently, Becky. I would have to say my focus is helping my family thrive. I want them to thrive in their friendships and school. I want to thrive in my marriage. I want us to thrive as a family together. I know that my attitude and direction is the key tomuch of this. I am thriving to be a better person.

  11. My word(s) would have to be "Let Go, Let God." I tend to look back when I should be looking forward.2010 was the hardest year for me yet in my adult life, and as much as I'm thankful its over I am even more terrified of what 2011 will bring. I'm learning to trust that God has a plan and to let Him take the lead.

  12. You're inspiring, lady! Trivia- when I look at the pictures of you and your hubby together, the closeness and love comes through the screen of my laptop. You guys must be an awesome couple, because my laptop hasn't done that before!

    * I like the idea of blooming in January. Perhaps I'll go sit in my greenhouse!

  13. I agree thrive and grow together! January and Feb are usually rough for me too but like you said so much to do and keep busy:O) Love all the pics in the snow, have a great day!!!!!!

  14. this post is so good and ironic cause I'm posting on my "word" today! this year my word is "breathe"...just step back, and take it all in...insteading of driving myself so crazily to meet goals and cross off my to do list...i'll explain more later in my "word" post :)

  15. Becky, what a lovely post. It brought me to tears. Your photos are incredible and the music was perfect. Love you! Thank you! For such a blessing today!

  16. Becky, I am just loving your new photographs! You are really capturing spectacular shots .... beautiful pictures of you family ~ The sun and the white snow brought many memories of my childhood in Michigand and skiing days in Big Bear and Mammoth ~ so pretty!

    Not sure of my word yet ~ but "energy" seems to keep whispering to me. Happy New Year and keep sharing your new love of photography xo

  17. Your photos are looking so amazing Becky! I love your word. I don't know what mine would be...I was drawn to the word "flourish" when I saw it in your post, so maybe that would be my choice.

    Hope you have a blessed and joyous year ♥

  18. Love your blog and LOVE you ATTITUDE!!!

  19. I love it Becky! It is a great word and I hear ya about January! So long and drawn out but I hope, just like you, to find news things that make me happy no matter what the weather brings. I think that this years word for me might be "exhale". I just want to live, love and and be able to see things in my life while letting go of whatever stops me, to stop holding my breath and being so tense and uptight about things.

    You pictures are gorgeous, you are doing really well with your new camera!

  20. Becky. I love your blog. And your pics. And the bangs (My daughters and I got bangs this fall too!) And your paintings : ) My word last year was hear in the scriptures before Christmas that while John the Baptist had ZEAL, Mary PONDERED. Well, I tend to have lots of zeal for a lot of things (that's part of the problem!) so I chose to PONDER more. I even created a piece of art w/ that word at the center. PONDER really worked for me. This year I am choosing SIMPLICITY. It sounds so simple (!) yet as I continue this journey of trying to figure it all out, I realize I get so bogged down and distracted w/ "stuff" (not just material things either) and I want to get down to basics...with my prayer life, with my relationships, with my family's overall health, with the house, and my new found art hobby : ) etc. Ok, done rambling. Gotta get ready for church. God bless YOUR day~ Susan

  21. Becky, I love that word! I might have to share this word with you. When I was thinking about a word for me, LIVE is all that came to mind. But now that you have said THRIVE...that's it!
    I love the play time in the snow. Sadly, it warmed up a little too much here in Iowa, and most of our snow is gone now. I am looking forward to our next snow fall!
    God bless you and your family during this new year.
    Oh, and if you ever have the urge to send someone barn scene....this farmgirl could love one! (Or if one is for sale.)

  22. Oh man. I love that red barn picture. Sure would good as a painting....hmmm..who do I know who paints???

    I don't have a word yet, for the year anyway, right now all I can think of is "recover".

  23. Such great fun pictures.
    My word is "improve". Hmmmmm that can mean so much.

  24. My word is "enough". I always feel I am short of something. Confidence? I'm not sure. Am I good enough? But this year I want to live the saying "I am enough." I want to do fun things for myself. Go places I have never been before even though I may not have anyone to go with me. Wish me luck! I do thank you for your inspiring blog.

  25. I'm so glad you 'blooming' this month. I love the winter, and gray, rainy days. I'm strange that way...

    I think you know your camera pretty well already; you take amazing pictures! Loving the red barn, btw.

    I'll let you in on a little secret. Because so many people struggle with this time of year, I'm doing a giveaway on my blog tomorrow. Tune in and take a chance!

  26. i think we're on the same page...i connect with your goals. i think the last few years i had things to take care of. bridges to burn. now that i've put them all to rest i can see things more clearly...2011...i'm liking this has a posotive feel to it!

  27. What a great word! I've also been thinking about what my compass will be this year. There are a few I'd like to hang on to, but I keep coming back to "heal". Everything else will fall under this umbrella. The last few years have been a little rough, and I think I just need to focus on getting to a new normal. :)

  28. I love you blog and love this post! January is so dreary. I'm so glad that you have found hope! I love your word. Have a great New Year!

  29. I love that photo of the Red Barn!!!

    Happy January, only 2 months til Spring!!! ;)

  30. I love that photo of the Red Barn!!!

    Happy January, only 2 month's til Spring ;)

  31. My word is smile! it reminds me that something so simple is so beautiful and can make a huge difference

  32. Deliberate. Life goes by so fast with so many changes. I've been working toward this goal for a good while, and I may be able to begin to accomplish that trait this year. Making the most of each day, focusing, and making choices with reason and purpose instead of letting time slip through my fingers in chaos. -- michele

  33. Thrive. I needed to read this post today. It is all about figuring out how to thrive even when it's cold outside. And inside.

  34. This is exactly my sentiment. January is the hardest month for me. I love the promise and the clean slate, but some times it is hard to be motivated in January. This class looks like just the thing to help and I thought of you when I saw it!

  35. You got it! Thanks for the nudge to embrace January....

    Have I mentioned I love your new banner....especially the cute girlie with the sassy bangs???

    Meet you out on Lake Minnetonka soon? We have some snowshoe-ing to we embrace January in Minnesota together! Ha, ha, ha!

  36. Simplify...that is my word for 2011. I love reading your blog. It always makes me feel good.
    Your music picks are awesome!
    Sending wishes to you and all those you love for peace, health and joy.
    ♥ Alicia

  37. First of all love your pictures! You are getting really good with your camera. I might steal your word...thrive! If you think about it, anything you would want to do this year, you would want to thrive at it, right? I also have to giggle because living in SoCal we have the mildest winters and as I'm looking at your pictures we are actually getting some, well we call it snow, coming down right now, it's so pretty. Hope your winter isn't too long.

  38. I'm laughing, because I just posted on a similar theme, about having hope.... girl, we are TWO peas!! Two peas, I tell ya!

    I want to come cross country ski with you. I LOVE cross country skiing... was that photo you guys? I haven't done it in YeARS, but I LOVED it as a kid!!

  39. My word is Rest. It came to me at church this morning! I want to rest in the Lord and trust him and not get too worked up over the little things that do not go my way.

    Happy New Year! I enjoyed all the great pictures in this post!

  40. My word for this year is ABUNDANCE. I want to remember how abundant we are in every aspect, no matter what the circumstances or difficulties.

    You know, I can only imagine how difficult it must be in January (living in FL), but you sure do make it look pretty with your amazing photos :).
    I have only recently discovered your blog. Your artwork is absolutely lovely and charming. I LOVE your work. Maybe I'll be fortunate enough to have one hanging in one of our rooms one day :).

    Happy New Year to you and your family :).

  41. Wishing you a happy & blessed 2011...a year for you to "thrive"!! Love your word:) I struggle through the cold months, too; so, this year my word is CHOOSE...choose to be happy, choose to see beauty, choose positive thoughts over negative, and so on. Now, I just have to hold myself to it;)

  42. Great shots ~ great word!! Love this post Becky ~ it makes my heart sing! xo

  43. oh my my my my... look at those pictures!!! -kelle hampton would be proud! ; ) i love the pic of you and your honey. i also love the pics of the chicks.

    i feel like i'm in a similar good frame of mind. my usual discontent has turned into sweet contentment. i love how the Lord changes us like that! so, my word is CONTENTMENT. no matter what comes my way this year i want to be content in the Lord!

  44. I most certainly need to beat the Januarys (and the Februarys too). Thrive is a GREAT word and I pray that you to just this year and reveal God's glory. I'm thinking my word for this year is simplify...I'm still praying about it. Have a wonderful January Sweet Becky.

  45. Oh, yes, yes, YES. I'm with you on the January thing. I'm doing my best to hype myself up for it. :) Thrive is such a great word, Becks! Can't wait to be along for the ride.

  46. i have a stirring in my heart so much going on i dont quite know what word i want to choose,i do know however i want to find it:) i want to define who i am as a person,i want to startliving for me and not for anyone else.I want to be a confident, strong,leader for my children i want so many things.I have such a hard time during January Idaho is just blah when you dont love the snow,but i am gonna try and embrace my craetive side for once and try and stop feeling like nothing i do is good enough,thanks for the inspirational post:)

  47. Becky, I find myself waiting for a new post from you and once again I was in awe. Thanks for the great pics and I am thinking the same thoughts, I just don't know how to put it to words as well as you. I want to thrive also. Thanks

  48. I love your word! I hope you thrive from the beginning of this brand new year!

  49. "Thrive", that is a great word for 2011! Mine is possibilities.

    Your photos are outstanding!!

  50. I always struggle with January... I hate the holidays being over. I love those pictures where you can see the snow glitter. Is that where you live?! With that great big space of snow and the barn in the background? Incredible.

    I'm feeling a bit of anxiety at getting things together this year- like there is so much I want to do and I don't know how to start.

    I've had an attachment to the word thrive since having cancer. Everyone always talks about surviving but it never seemed enough. I don't want to just survive- I want to thrive.

  51. great word choice, becky!

    i also find that when i have goals and dreams to pursue it helps to keep dark days at bay. hope the new year finds you blooming all the more, friend.


  52. Love your word Becky! Mine is "perspective" because I often lose it! January will be over before we know it. Hang in there my friend.

  53. Look at you bloom girl- your photographs are amazing. It is evident that you are thriving, look at all the beauty you have created in this place of blog.

    Happy new year Becky.

  54. To live without fear. Fear of failure, fear of not being good enough. This past December instead of Christmas we celebrated my very young SIL's life. Christmas will be this Saturday for us. We were all too sad to do it 5 days after he left us. But through the process of preparing to lay him to rest I learned so much from him. He lived a lot of life and without fear. He made people laugh and he was a goof and he tried new things.
    So in honor of Steve, I want to try living without fear of.....?

  55. Becky, *all* of your photos are gorgeous. They are so bright and tack sharp! I loved looking at them.I do not knw what camera you now have but I don't think that you have to learn much about it. :)

    I chose my word for this year about 2 weeks ago and have yet to blog about it. Last year my word was hope. This year I have chosen the word peace for many reasons.

    We, in NH are very blessed this year. We have only had one snow storm so far and that was on December 26-27. I think we got about 8 inches of snow. Since then we have had 40 and 50 degree weather with some sunshine so our snow has melted away quite a bit. I am hoping that is a sign that our winter will go by quickly this year. I'm sorry that your having so much snow. We have had and will continue as of tonight to be back into the very cold. keep smiling that beautiful smile that you have. Only a few mnoths left of winter. :)


  56. Girl, you WILL thrive. I just know it.
    You inspire me, I love your honesty.

    My word, oddly enough, is survive. We don't have the oppressive weather down here, but I understand the depression thing all too well.
    Just working on surviving these days.

    Beautiful post, I hope you rub off on me. :-)

  57. first of all...OH MY WORD>>>i LOVE your new header. the white barn & the girlie in it red hunters? i love it!!
    actuallly i'm guessing that cutiepie farmgirl with bangs, no less, is YOU! so cute!

    amen on thrive

    bravo on fabulous images too

  58. Awesome choice of a word! Lovely pictures. I absolutely love the one with the red barn!

    My word for 2011 is ***charity***

  59. I'd say you are
    well on your way
    with the photography
    thing, friend.
    Had "the word"
    convo with my family
    last week and decided
    mine is FOLLOW, as
    in follow where the
    Lord wants to take
    me this year. Probably
    sounds passive to many,
    but for me, who really
    likes to feel in control,
    follow seems perfect,
    this year. Looking forward
    to thriving this winter
    through our fun activities!
    xx Suzanne

  60. I love your word. I am still searching for mine!! :) Beautiful pictures, Becky!! I love them!

  61. Stay WARM girlie!!! It's tough to thrive in minus 27 weather. You can DO it!!

  62. girl - your photos are fabulous. I just love them!

    LOVE your word...THRIVE. So fabulous and perfect for you.

    I posted about my word today: Relationships. I am so excited to start this year!

    hugs - T. xoxo

  63. i am working on my word for this year. love your word and your new outlook on jan. in MN. it can be a long month, the only saving grace for me is my birthday is this month!

  64. My word is Faith. I want to rely on it and grow in it in 2011. So far 2010 gave me a great start. I'm trying to burn into my heart & soul - walk by faith, not by sight & God keeps putting phrases about faith everywhere for me to see. However, walking by faith not by sight, is one of the hardest things I have had to do! I have a lot of work to do this year :) I think baby girl Ollie Faith will help when she arrives :)

  65. My word is Celebrate : )
    Celebrate my baby turning 11.
    Celebrate my family because they are just perfect for me.
    Celebrate Jesus because he loves me and never gives up on me even when I am ridiculous.
    There are so many things to celebrate. I am thankful!
    I smiled so much about you and your camera. I can tell you are completely and totally in love with it!

  66. Okay Becky, you have me going every which direction today!!! I have so much I wanna comment on...I hope I can get it all out! First off, I am so happy you are not dealing with the seasonal blues like this time last year. That makes me smile real big. And the pic of your girls together on the perfect. I just love it. I LOVE YOUR CAMERA!!! Please tell us again which camera and lens you use....the pictures are amazing. And I love bangs on you. You are just glowing.....much love and many blessings to you and yours in 2011!!!! And if I had to just pick ONE word. (HARD!!!) I am more a statement kinda gal....but, I think I would pick....TRUST!!!! I need to just TRUST in the lord more...and know this is where HE wants me/us...yep. TRUST!

  67. and you will thrive and you are thriving! And you'll be organized! I'm happy when you're happy. So glad that the winter is going better for you this year! And girl, you have bloomed!!!

  68. I have projects planned too! I have 7 different life categories and a huge list for each category for 2011. !!! They are tangible highlight them off the list tasks though so I will hope to see lots of highlighted action soon. ;)

  69. I'm ADVENTURE this year. If we are following hard after God, how can it be anything else? So I am incorporating adventure into my life to shake me out of my comfort zone and remind myself to take chances in life.

    You are definitely blooming! And I agree, January usually does suck, but I have so much hope this year!

  70. It is wonderful that you find yourself happy and thriving... blooming ... this January!! =) What a beautiful post! I have been visiting randomly since spring?? I am always glad when I do!! You have a beautiful spirit.

    In the last decade our little family has been through many many medical trials... and as God grew my heart in the midst... I stopped planning ahead... I started living for the changes so quickly... My life phrase became ~ Seize the Day... Seize the precious moments God grants us and Live, Laugh, Love, Trust and Hope! =) I named my wee little blog a year ago Seizing My Day because that is my Word. =) I never want to look back and regret... I want to remember Every Day is New Years Day... everyday I am blessed to wake up and Seize the Day... even in the midst of trials ... there are beautiful moments to Seize! Every Day I want to live life to its fullest... so If I catch myself getting down, getting grumpy, looking at my glass half empty... I remind myself to Seize My Day... a day given to me by a Beautiful Loving God! Many many years ago God worked in my heart to Surrender... Surrender myself to HIM every moment of every day... He wants so much to live in and through us all... if we surrender ourselves to His Holy Spirit...He Will Do Beautiful things in and through us!! That is where I want to be once again... not only Seizing My Day but Surrendering My Day to Him!! oops... thinkin out loud... but it turned out beautiful... reminding me to Surrender!!

    Bless you for having such an open heart in this crazy land of blogging! =)

    Are you cross country skiing right out our back door??!! (envy envy!! it has been WAY too long since I did that!) =)

  71. wow. i love this. i love the energy, the holy "vibe" in it (can i say that?) ... and there is SO much love in that photo of your husband squeezing you. i too feel i am going to bloom. it hasn't happened yet, but soon. and what would this mean, if we hadn't known pain, first? may God bless you this year, dear friend. ((thank you so much for prayers...))

  72. Hey girl. I'm stickin' with the word "Do." again this year - I'm so excited I was blessed by a special delivery from Melody herself from The Brave Girls Club - she dropped off a kit for their 6 week on-line seminar. I wanted to share that with you because I remember I told you about my weird way I found out that my husband and her husband are friends and also you went to Brave Girls Camp - I'm looking forward to 2011 as a year of do (ing) lots of things I've been just thinking about - so instead of just thinking about them I'm going to DO. them and be Brave!!

  73. I was just telling my mom & husband over the weekend how much I love this time of year.

    It's a calming time of year for me of rest and relaxation and hibernation. Our schedules are so busy all year, but after the holidays, it slows down. We've seen our family and friends at the holidays, no one is motivated to do much (or has the $ after the holidays!).

    For me it is a time to enjoy my home and my family and to live a little simpler life.

    My mother-in-law got us a beautiful sign for Christmas with a barn and a cow that hangs by our front door now that says, live life simply.

    That is what I plan to do.


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