Happy New Year!


It seems like such a large number. Wasn’t it just a little bit ago that we were all worried (or not, depending on our personal feelings) about Y2K? Yet here we are, well into the second decade of the millennium.

Teacup with ball of tea

Today’s tea — jasmine globe tea, composed of green tea, jasmine, and amaranth. It unfolds beautifully in the cup, and has a delicate flavor. A perfect contemplative drink for starting the year.

This is going to be a bit of a rambling post, as I’ve several things on my mind.

First, the blog:

I will be continuing to do the Merry-Go-Round Blog Tour posts once a month, on the 2nd. This month (tomorrow) will be about my goals and plans for the year.

The Bodyguard of Lies serial will continue posting on Tuesdays until it’s finished (late October, I think), at which point I will put the complete novel up for sale. If there seems to be interest, I will then start posting its sequel.

I used to do gratitude posts on Monday. I’m going to go back to doing that; it’s a nice way to start the week off.

Second, my hair:

What? That deserves its own spot in my post?

Well, as you may recall, I started off last year by dyeing my hair green. It stayed mostly green through the year, although there was a week or two of teal in there as I switched dyes and worked to get the color right. I’ve also been letting it grow out — it’s just below my shoulders now (like 1/4 inch, so really just below), which is the longest its been in a while.

I haven’t decided what I’m doing with it this year. I’ve considered keeping it green, doing it a different color every month (hey, I can match the holidays!), going with a vibrant fuchsia, putting in rainbow stripes . . . No decision yet.

I like playing with my hair because nothing’s permanent. Hair always grows out, so I can change the color or length (or curl, although I don’t think I’ll ever try a perm again; I’ve never been happy with the results) without any long-term consequences. (Yes, this is one of the fringe benefits of being a freelancer. I don’t have to worry about my employer’s dress code!) So my only limitations are it has to be fun and I have to think it’ll look good. (My daughter might like it if I tried cotton candy pink hair, but that shade would look hideous on me.)

I’m open to suggestions, if anyone has any ideas.

Third, work:

Work’s been quite busy of late. There’s the on-going copyediting gig (civil engineering articles), the book on psychiatry that I’ve been waiting since 2013 to be able to index, and an assortment of …For Dummies titles that I’ve been working on for the past couple of months, and on into this month.

This is, quite frankly, awesome. You might think so much work would mean I’m unable to write, but in fact, it makes it easier. I’m one of those people whose mind spins in circles when stressed — so not being worried about when I’m going to have more work or when the money’s going to show up helps me focus, so I’m actually better able to write (not necessarily write better, although I’m working on it). It also gives a bit more structure to my day and says, “Hey, if you don’t get the writing done now, you’re not going to have time to do it,” which makes me more likely to sit down and write instead of puttering away the day. (This is why, even were I to become a best-selling author, I don’t think I’d give up my freelance work. Structure is my friend.)

Fourth, the theme of the year:

Theme? Well, last year, when I posted about coloring my hair, I half-jokingly talked about turning toward growth. Specifically, I said,

I’ve switched from twilight to growth. Or perhaps I was blooming, and I’ve deadheaded the old blooms to encourage production.

I wrote more about it in my morning pages, about how I wanted to grow in all kinds of ways, as a writer, in my work, as a mom . . . and I think I did pretty well with that as my focus.

I’ve had other themes: 2011 was the year of No Excuses, and in 2012Β I did my gratitude posts but also focused on finishing things.

This year is a year for connections. I want to interact more deeply with my readers, which means continuing the newsletter as well as being active on social media and responsive to e-mails, but it also means looking for opportunities to meet new people and forge new bonds. That might even mean I come out of my shell here at home and get more involved in my community (in whatever time I have to do that). I’ll let you all know how it goes in December.

Fifth, my wish for all of you for the new year:

May your year be bright and brimming with hope fulfilled and dreams lived. May your health improve, your joy multiply, and your good intentions prosper. And may 2015 be your best year yet, with each year to come building on it as a foundation.

Happy New Year!

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  1. For the hair: braids? a mohawk? πŸ˜€

    • I’ve done a French braid a couple of times in the past month. My two problems with longer hair are that I don’t like it in my face and it’s on the thin side, so it can look ratty if I just leave it down. (Which I guess means we’ll see whether I keep growing it or not.)

      A mohawk . . . I don’t think it would look right with my glasses. πŸ˜‰

  2. A lovely post, Erin. As to your hair, I do so like fuchsia but I keep it constrained to my shirts. I hear you on the long hair issues. Mine is thick rather than thin but when it gets too long, it strangles me in the night and annoys me in the day. I use those little plastic grabber clips to hold it off my face and braid it at night. Well, mine’s a wee bit past my shoulders…like mid-back…so you have a ways to go before you should need the braids at night.

    I like the concept of annual themes. Good luck with your connections.

    • I keep my hair pinned up at night because otherwise, I sometimes wake up with green spots on my cheeks (especially in the first couple of weeks after I dye my hair). πŸ™‚

      And thanks. πŸ™‚

  3. Happy New Year!

    And happy new hair, whatever you decide to do with it. πŸ™‚

  4. Ashe Elton Parker

    Happy New Year. Good luck making the connections you want.

    Why not do your daughter’s hair pink?

    • Thanks, Ashe! Happy New Year!

      I think 7’s still a little young to bleach and then dye hair. We do have hair chalk for her that we use sometimes, and I’ve used spray hair color on her for Halloween (and green for the St. Patrick’s Day parade).

  5. Lots of things going on with you this year. Good luck with all of it. I like the idea of gratitude posts. I may try that on the occasional Monday blog. Thanks for the idea.

  6. Sigh. Don’t get me started on hair. I told Mr. L I’d let mine grow after I retired, and I tried. Really. I hated it. I apologized and got it cut. The problem is I don’t mind it long in the back, but I can’t stand it when the bangs get in my eyes and when the hair on the side of my head gets on my face. Which leaves me to an 80s-era mullet or short hair. Since I don’t like that style well enough to endure the ridicule that brings, I’ll keep the hair short. As for color, I like watching the gray strands work their way in naturally.

    • I keep mine pulled back in ponytails most of the time, or pinned back with combs because I’m not wild about it being in my face, either. My daughter wears hers long and loose, and I just don’t understand it. πŸ˜€

      Hooray for knowing what works for you!

  7. Happy New Year!

    I’d definitely go with rainbow stripes, myself. That would look amazing with a french braid, I’d think!

    • Happy New Year, Nicki!

      Hmm. The French braid is a thought.

      Actually one thing I was thinking of was braiding the hair before dyeing it, so the color would wave through with different intensity. Thinking about it.

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