Sunday, January 02, 2011

This Year I Resolve to... Enjoy Life's Small Pleasures

My guilt-free New Year's Trifle

I reduced my New Year’s Resolutions to one word or phrase over the last couple of years. In 2009 my word was “simplify” and it is still a daily goal for me. Last year I resolved to make “the best choices” knowing they are not always the easiest ones.

As years go by it is apparent that it is rare to experience “the best year ever”. Good health, prosperity and happy relationships require ongoing perseverance and in spite of our best efforts, we will not experience success in all areas. Life comes in a mix of good and bad, and events will happen which are beyond our control. I am glad I do not know what is ahead for me in 2011. It is enough to live one day at a time.

So this year I resolve to take time to notice and enjoy life’s small pleasures. I bought an inexpensive kit of pre-cut wood to make a small platform bird feeder. Juncos, Doves and Cardinals are some of the birds who do not really like the perch feeders in our yard. Yesterday I glued the pieces according to the instructions before nailing them together. Even with a pattern and the right materials my feeder is not perfectly constructed. There are a couple of bent nails which went off course due to knots in the wood and my poor aim with the hammer. But the feeder is functional if not perfect and the birds do not mind the irregularities in the structure. 

I too am far from perfect and realize that my efforts to achieve “perfection” in this life will certainly fail. I am a work in progress and have some bent nails and knot holes, but it is possible to be useful and fulfilled just the way I am. Words from 2 Corinthians 4 are printed on a plaque in the bathroom. Our treasure is in fragile jars of clay and while outwardly we may be breaking down, inwardly we can be renewed each and every day. That renewal comes through God’s life in us and an attitude of gratitude, of giving thanks in all circumstances.

So I wish everyone a Happy New Year and hope you discover the joy in life's small pleasures.

January 1st was dull and rainy but I enjoyed
  • building a feeder
  • watching the birds at my new feeder
  • having tea and trifle with two of my daughters
  • talking to my other daughter and mother on Skype
  • seeing the movie The King's Speech


  1. I believe that life is all about the small pleasures. I don't think a lot of people realize that.

  2. It is a blessing that we do not know what lies ahead.I have learned in new ways,just how important it is to cherish each moment and live life with love and peace.

  3. I love your resolution! Your post was inspiring. There is, indeed, much to be grateful for when we take the time to appreciate the simple joys that are in each day. Happy New Year!

  4. Life Really is about the NOW. It's all we have.

  5. Ah yes, one day at a time - enjoy the simple pleasures. That is how I've been getting through these last few months. I love that scripture - fragile, deteriorating exteriors but the inner man, renewed daily until one day - our final transformation! I would have never thought I could look forward to that day but more and more .....

    I always think it is in the simple, little things that God proves Himself to us over and over. It is how we can face the big things when they happen.

  6. I love this post. It's grounded and mindful and thought provoking.
    I really wanted to do a New Year's post but my thoughts were too fragmented and disconnected and I didn't know how to piece it all together to make it something worthwhile!
    This read is exactly what I needed!
    Thanks :)

  7. Hear, hear.
    I echo your sentiments. And, I think, people who can take pleasure in small things are far more likely to experience contentment than those who only delight in big things. Big things too often disappoint; small things rarely disappoint.

  8. Thanks for the kind wishes. And I hope that the small daily pleasures find you frequently and bring you great joy and happiness this year.

  9. Ruth,

    Your post brought me to tears. It's exactly what we all need... to simplify and enjoy the small pleasures.

    I'm enjoying your crafty skills for the birds :)


    Happy New Year, Ruth!

  10. We can ALL stand to learn these lessons Ruth. Love your sweet feeder.

  11. This is a lovely post Ruth, mindful, present, and hopeful. I wish you a great new year and am pleased to have "found" you via blogging!

  12. Often, small pleasures are the best!
    Happy New Year to you too, Ruth.

  13. The trifle looks so yummy, and an extra treat to be able to have that with your daughters:)
    How serendipitous - the motto "simplicity" I have for Christmas!
    Wishing you a great New Year!

  14. Seems like almost everyone had a rainy New Year. We did too. YUM - that trifle looks scrumptions!

    Simplify and enjoy - I like that.

  15. It's a good thing I can't see the future. I'd worry way too much. Your resolution is a good one. Small pleasures are the best.

  16. Trying to simplify has been something I've been working on too.
    Thanks for the New year message and Happy new Year to you as well.


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