Word of the Year 2023

Greetings and Happy New Year my beloveds! Did you even notice I took a little sabbatical over the holidays? No worries… here I am back in your inbox for another week and another brand new year!

If you’ve been following along, you’ll remember that I no longer subscribe to resolutions or goals at the beginning of new calendars, but have adopted the practice of picking a #wordoftheyear. You are welcome to check past posts or my Pinterest board dedicated to such endeavours. Here are some links:

And so the time has rolled around once more for a new word to embody my feelings and actions for 2023. Are you ready for the reveal?! Here it is:

REFRESH

Perhaps many of you are feeling it this year as well. Refresh. Not “freshen” or “fresh” but “Refresh” as in — again. Here’s the definition I found in Oxford’s dictionary:

re·fresh

/rəˈfreSH/

verb

  1. give new strength or energy to; reinvigorate.” the shower had refreshed her”

Sigh. That’s where I am feelin’ this year is going to go. It’s the kind of revamp your computer and “refresh” your screen kinda thing. When you have too many tabs open and everything is slow and sluggish. Covid has done a big number on so many of us and I’m feeling we all need to hit the refresh button!

It’s like you’ve been working hard in the hot sun and you finally sit down for a second or two to cool off with a fresh lemonade… but it’s not always sweet. Sometimes you need a little spike to quench the heat. It’s the same in life. You need a cool-off that clears the palate without adding the fillers or sugar coating. A little shock value to reset and refocus. It’s only then that we can carry on with the hard work. It’s what I am manifesting this year. A refresh.

It’s shaping up to be a full year for the Mitton crew and some big changes are coming down the pipes: two of us have milestone birthdays, I am so going to dye my hair, and the kids are getting older and flexing their wings ready to fly from the nest. Will the hubby and I survive? Are we ready for the next stages? Will he like my hair? Refresh.

The Bible refers to this state of “refreshing” after an extended period of lamenting. The time of sitting in ashes and fasting is followed by a time of “getting up, washing, eating a good meal, dressing in clean garments” and moving on with life! That’s what I wish this year to be. There is a time for lamenting and feeling sad… reflection even. Then, there is a time to scrub yourself clean from the past and go out into the world ready to face the next step! Refreshed.

“REFRESH” photo by: Tadeusz-Lacota (Unsplash)

Are you with me? Will mittonmusings change? Maybe. Will life change? Certainly. It usually does — whether we want it to or not. I’m ready for the Refresh this year! Join me to see how it all pans out!

Fresh. Then Refresh.

Whew! It’s been a week. We’ve spent the last six days up north, house sitting for friends who have an even greater zoo than we do: Chickens, bunnies, dogs and more! Plus my kids, and a restless husband who thinks holidays must include several walks and trail exploring, makes for a busy, but full week of adventures! Not to mention our new (currently untrained) puppy added exhaustion to the list. Chores were to be done and early morning walks were on the agenda. No wonder farmers are in such great shape! However, we also spent some time just chillaxin’ on the porch reflecting in the sunshine. It was a different kind of ‘vacation’ – and perhaps many of you have experienced similar days during this pandemic. A forced rest, even.

The youngest of the Mitton crew lapped it up. She’s a lot like her mama — animal lover with a keen sense of devotion, and less inhibition and worry than I do now that I am older (and know more than I should). She was definitely in her happy place! Baby bunny cuddles and dog belly rubs are this girl’s zone. One of her favourite things to do was check the nesting boxes for chicken eggs. Poor birds were disturbed several times a day, as she hoped to discover their treasures… it was a bonus if the egg was still warm! One day we discovered the perfect egg. I know, weird thought… but really. It was the perfect egg shape, with rounded edges and ever-so-slight point at the top. A beautiful tan colour, dappled in a smooth textured shell with a few darker specks to give it just the right amount of shade. If I were a painter, it would be a perfect still life subject, nestled against a lightly stained wood grained table… but perhaps that’s not your thing. Just work with me, okay?

The perfect egg… what a treasure!

Nonetheless, the discovery of “the perfect egg” had me thinking about God’s provision. His treasures, given to us in nature. Rich colours of flowers and sunsets, the smell of morning dew, the ruggedness of flint rock cliffs, the softness of my new puppy’s fur. As we devoured fresh eggs one morning this past week, we talked about whether “fresh eggs” were different tasting. My verdict is yes, most definitely. Fresh always seems better! If you google “fresh” the top ads are all about food. Next come “natural based” skin care products…. and then something in Fortnite? That seemed a little off topic, but whatever. Summertime is an explosion of freshness! My socials are filled with farmer’s market produce and your country lakefront cottage pics. It seems like holidays are the perfect time to renew and refresh.

If you look up the definition of “fresh” and it’s similar based “refresh”, you’ll discover a myriad of definitions: not stale, pure, new, or recently come into existence. Even bold and brassy, as in don’t get “fresh” with me, young man. Interesting, eh? I recently embarked on a 5 day study/devotional on Refreshing. A big part of that “refreshing” is rest. Our physical bodies need that rest to recoup, recover and refresh. Our spiritual souls need that renewal again, too. It’s exciting when a piece of scripture becomes “new” again, isn’t it? Like fresh oxygen breathed in, our souls need a good cleansing every now and then as well.

a quote from my new devotional study

I’ve missed some of that worship as we’ve been isolating. It’s hard to have deep conversations and rich discussion via a webcam. Radio praises aren’t the same as revival concerts where fellow believers are singing from the heart, and straight up to heaven! But God is still very much present, and very much behind the scenes, preparing our hearts for revival, renewal and refreshment. Perhaps many of you have been forced to “rest” right now. To reflect on what is important. Maybe others of you are looking to “refresh” and start anew. I think it is a God thing. This desire to reflect and gather perspective. To assess and refocus. Then you are able to appreciate small treasures, and reflect on the simple things that God gives us — like the perfect backyard chicken’s egg.