Archives for posts with tag: new year

Happy 2017, smagik readers! 

On NYE morning, I woke up in a motel in Kingman, Arizona, half way between NM and LA. New Years Eve. 2016 for another few hours. And, as I sat eating my complimentary breakfast, all I could think was “I didn’t realize leaving my comfort zone would be so uncomfortable.” Ha! That possibility had honestly never crossed my mind. Not until I was home for Christmas, loading up my car with things to take to LA, saying goodbye to family, and driving across the desert, again. 

When I arrived in LA, it was drizzling and chilly as I made the fifteen or so trips up and down 48 stairs to unload art, dishes, shoes, files, Christmas presents, one Buddha statue, and a shelf from my car. Once unloaded, I stared at piles of things deemed worthy of bringing west. Wow, now what? “Just keep going,” whispered a voice. 

While home for Christmas, I became aware of two distinct voices raging a sort of battle in my head. One was loud, screaming, scared, gripping, wanting only to stay safe, secure, and to know how everything was going to turn out. The other was a faint whisper that told me to keep going and to trust that I was being guided. And for much of the trip, the screams were winning. It was only after my first panic attack in ten years, late at night on Christmas night, that I realized how quickly and urgently I had been operating for the past few months and that it was time to get quiet, slow down, and come back to the whispers.  

When I slow down, tune in, and keep myself very, very present, it is easy to trust in the adventure and timing of my life. When I move too fast and try to manhandle the universe into doing things exactly how I want them done, WHEN I want them done, panic ensues. 

So, here I am in my fairly empty but cute apartment, sharing walls with strangers for the first time since college, exploring a new neighborhood, and trying to just make one decision at a time. All I know is that this feels right for the time being. I needed to mix things up and I succeeded and I have to trust that I will continue to succeed. 

Because I find there to be the finest of lines between fear and excitement, I choose Adventure as my word for 2017. When handed choices, obstacles, and situations, I plan to make my decisions from a place of “what is the adventurous, and therefor trusting, way to do this?” It builds upon my 2016 word of Faith, around which I know I still have more than a few lessons to learn. I trust that by bringing Adventure into the mix, I will choose fun and joy more frequently, keep myself present, and practice having Faith that I am being guided through the fog. Onward! 


I wish all of you a joyous, happy, present, fun, healthy, prosperous, and adventurous year!! Make it great! 

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My life is present to a crazy degree at the moment. Bring the plants inside, it might freeze tonight. Put away the Dia de Los Muertos decorations and altar. Make something delicious and healthy to eat for dinner. I have no plan past the end of the week. No future trips, no jobs lined up, several creative projects floating in my mind, but none begun yet. 

A few weeks ago, while waiting for the subway in NYC, I sat on a bench and thought about my 2015 so far. At the end of 2014, I chose joy as my word for the year. I wanted fun, spontaneity, adventure, and to go with the flow. And, it came to pass. Somewhere along the way, I made an agreement with myself that, in exchange for control, I would say yes instead of no. I let go of preconceived notions of how it would be,  chose love over fear, adventure over safety, and time off over money. 

And, what a wacky ride it’s been. 2015 has repeatedly taken me by surprise and is a hard one to sum up in words. I have managed to (repeatedly) surprise myself, which might be the biggest relief and joy of all; Hip hop dancing, 12 second long videos, jewelry design, cliff jumping, a beak dancing class, new friends you feel you’ve known forever, Room 617, TSA security to enter the hotel, loading a wardrobe trailer in Times Square, loving Tayolr Swift’s latest album, feeling ready to go back on location if the opportunity arises, cizing it up at lunch, discovering pot helps me sleep, and a hammock.. None of these were anywhere on my radar back in January. 

With a little under two months to go, God only knows what is to come or how this one will end. But, if it’s anything like the first ten months, there’s nothing to worry about, as long as I continue to choose adventure over control, love over fear, and say yes. 

PS, I thought the plant in the picture was dying when actually all it needed was to be put outside against a south facing wall for the summer. Rain, sun, fresh air. It’s very much alive. 

Top Ten Lists are abounding this week and Smagik doesn’t want to be left out… Best books, best movies, best apps, best and worst of everything, so… Here goes-

Smagik’s Favorite Discoveries of 2014:
(In no particular order)

1. Amsterdam
2. Tin Type Photo App
3. Markmanson.net
4. Dan Armor Cidre Brut
5. Serenity
6. Buti Warriors
7. Cassandro, El Exotico
8. Muertos Y Marigolds Parade
9. Improvisation
10A. Miso poached pears at Yokiyo
10B. Hanx Writer App for IPad

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Can’t wait to see what 2015 has in store!

It’s been a year of lessons, floods, introspection, things coming from left field, and of learning to let go, to laugh at myself, and to trust. Really, it’s been the exact opposite of the extroverted adrenaline high that was my 2012.

I should have known when I bought a calendar on Etsy.com which proclaimed that 2013 would be “the best year ever,” that I was setting myself up for trouble. I really wanted the excitement of 2012 to continue, but it was soon obvious that 2013 was to be about landing back in my life, examining, and moving forward from there. I had to learn to trust myself and the universe when I had no idea where I was being led.

In one of my first smagik posts, I wrote that I’d chosen “centered” as my word for the year and that I’d have to wait until the end of the year to see if that was an appropriate choice. Well, be careful what you ask for! The universe will not simply bestow the feeling, but will hand you the situation in which to practice that which you say you want.

For much of the summer and fall, I felt that I was in a little rowboat, trying to make it through stormy waves of emotion I’d never experienced before, heading towards an unknown destination, trying not to capsize. Trying to stay centered.

Turning down job offers, I took writing classes which had me plumbing my depths for material, unsure where any of it would lead. Submitting work and heading to El Salvador for surf camp, I crossed two items off of my bucket list.

As I sit here, on the last day of the year, I think Wow. It actually has been a good year, just not in the ways I expected it to be. It had some great highs and dark lows, but here I am, feeling truly more centered than ever. Watch what you ask for!

And so, as a friend likes to say, “keep it simple, stupid.” This year I’m choosing Happiness as my word. Keeping it simple. I’ll report back in a year!

Happy 2014 to all!

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