fitness · new year's resolutions

What month is your personal “January”?

January is far too full of “new year, new you.” It’s chock to the rafters with dreary diet resolutions and it’s already not a great month to begin with. Lots of people have been throwing around other suggested starting dates for new fitness goals and plans. December has often resonated with me. I have a bit more free time and the gym is basically empty.

Here on the blog we’ve tried making the case for a few different starting months.

So is December the best month for new fitness plans?

See december is the new january

December 1st or January 1st? I know which I choose

Or maybe it’s November?

Sam’s five November resolutions

The case for September

September is the real “new year” – what does this mean for your routines?

Happy New Year! (September is the new year for academics)

On back to school and starting as you mean to continue

Or maybe it’s February?

Maybe February is the new January: a case for showing up (late) to the challenge party

Starting the New Year today

January is fired as the month to start new things. It’s all about February now! Join us…

Resolutions pinned to a tree. Photo by Unsplash.

How about you? Which month is your fave for re-upping your fitness commitment?

fitness · new year's resolutions

Catherine’s no-buying-until-July plan: how’s it really going?

Like a number of the FIFI bloggers (and of course inspired by Mina, who did it first and showed us all how it’s done), I have been on a no-buying-clothes plan. I started July 1 (after a flurry of late-June orders of jeans). It went very well, and even felt relaxing. I could look all I wanted and not have to stress about did I really need this or that? That question was already answered– no, I didn’t need it, and I wasn’t going to buy it. I found my online browsing drop as well. All this was to the good.

Come January 1, I decided to re-up: no clothes buying (with some exceptions: underwear, bras, replacement of much-needed items, etc.) I mean, why not? My closet and chests of drawers were still pretty full. Cleaning out my closet revealed some clothes I had ordered but never worn, which was kind of like delayed shopping (or something). So I was good to go for the next six months, right?

Koala saying um... I... well... uhhh...
Koala doesn’t know what to say exactly. Neither do I.

Honestly, it’s not that bad. But I did buy some things. Two pairs of shoes. Here they are:

The first purchase was because my sister and niece have these (in different colors), which I borrowed and wore over the Christmas holidays. I didn’t even hesitate– I ordered those suckers right away! The blue Dansko clogs were a different matter. I was, well, bored and unsatisfied with my work footwear. I wanted a pick-me-up for my feet. After several instances of abandoning online shopping carts, I finally did the deed. And honestly, I’m super happy with both of these purchases, despite the double transgression.

What does all of this mean– for my no-buying plan, for me as a person?

For my plan, I’ve resumed it. Yes, I admit, once I breached the online credit-card-use barrier, there was an initial “oh, what the hell” response. But I’m not an all-or-nothing person. By that, I mean that I know that adhering to the nothing-part of buy-nothing is pretty hard for me. But, buy-almost-nothing has been much easier than I thought. Yes, I have been doing more online browsing lately. I think that’s a function of late-winter doldrums rather than actual desire for more clothing. So I’m letting myself do that. The nice thing is, I haven’t bought anything. That feels good to me, and it feels like the right thing for me– resticking to the no-clothes-buying plan until July 1.

I’m thinking about how this pattern relates to my physical activity and other self-care resolutions. Two things come to mind, First, since all-or-nothing plans don’t suit me (maybe they don’t suit most of us), a some-of-something plan might be better. Second, I’ve been having trouble sticking to my exercise plans during February and March (except during spring break visiting family). Doing a little activity has been the most I’ve been doing. Well, okay then. Noticing what’s easier to do and when it’s easier is helping.

Hey readers, how are your all-some-none resolutions and plans going? I’d love to hear from you.

fitness · new year's resolutions

Getting Outdoors in 2023

I’m not sure where the month of January went, but it seemed in a hurry to get there. Time flew right by, at least for me. In the spirit of New Year, Same Me I added very little to my plate related to challenges or resolutions. I picked my WOTY (create) and set some yearly goals that support my vision for the year.

Through that process (and this blog) I came across one new habit I wanted to add to my life. It takes me a long time to build a habit, and so I try to avoid stacking too many new ones together at the same time. The new habit I’m trying to adopt is Gretchen Rubins “Go Outside 23 in 23” – the goal of this challenge is to spend 23 minutes outside every day in 2023.

My plans are a little less grand. I’m not someone who does well with an “every day” challenge. I miss a day or feel overwhelmed trying to shoehorn something in and then get resentful and annoyed at whatever the task is. Or disappointed with myself that I “couldn’t even get that little thing done.” So I’m taking a more gentle approach to this outdoor habit/challenge.

I’m aiming to spend 23 minutes outside on MOST days in 2023. And by 23 minutes I really mean some amount of time I wouldn’t normally spend outside on any given day. My lowest time spend for January was only 5 minutes, but it was a struggle that day to get those minutes in and so I am counting them.

So far I’ve got a fairly good split of 23+ minute days and days in the mid-teens. And more than a few days of 0 minutes. I love winter, but I’m not a winter sports person, therefore my outdoor winter wear is fairly limited. January in New England was a mixed bag of bitter cold, downright balmy, and rain. So much rain. I also ushered the new year in with a nasty cold that refused to take leave, so spending longer than necessary in the cold, wet weather didn’t seem wise on some of those days. All told I checked off 16 days in January that I added outdoor time into my routine.

Rubin recently made a blog post titled “Tips for Going Outside in Cold or Wet Weather” which included strategies from podcast and social media followers to get more outdoor time into their days. I was glad to see there were many folks taking compassionate measures and modifying in ways that best suited their lifestyles. Some comments shared:

– determining what temperature is too cold (“23 in 23, above 23 degrees”)

– heated socks and gloves

– investing in comfortable cold weather clothing, such as a snowskirt

– turning a garage space into a recreation area where the doors can be open even on inclement days

– spending time looking outside from a sunny window when it isn’t feasible to get outdoors

This habit appealed to me as someone who works from home quite often. I also have a home gym where I do most of my fitness-related activities, and overall I was feeling like I needed more fresh air and time in nature. Last year we added more outdoor space onto our home, and I want to build my practice of spending time outdoors and enjoying those spaces more.

Are you doing the “23 in 23 challenge” or something else similar? Any tips for getting outdoors on those days where you just don’t want to put pants on (I just layer up in my pjs and go stand on the deck with a warm beverage)?

Amy Smith is a professor of Media & Communication and a communication consultant who lives north of Boston. Her research interests include gender communication and community building. Amy spends her movement time riding the basement bicycle to nowhere, walking her two dogs, and waiting for it to get warm enough for outdoor swimming in New England.

new year's resolutions

It’s Ditch Your Resolutions Day!

That’s January 17.

“January 17 or Ditch New Year’s Resolution Day is popularly thought to be the day when a large number of people abandon their New Year’s resolutions. Ditch New Year’s Resolution Day gives you an excuse to forget your New Year’s resolutions.”

We’ve written about it before. Check out the blog post from two years ago. I love the alternatives it suggests.

To that list I would add one more. You can change your resolutions. Maybe you’ve made a resolution about exercise but it’s sleep you really need. Then change. It’s all okay.

It’s the day to ditch your resolutions

fitness · habits · Happy New Year! · new year's resolutions

New Year, Same Me?

Every new year’s season we face the onslaught of marketing telling us that a “New Year, New You” is possible. A few years ago a friend and I started saying this phrase sarcastically, which then morphed into “New Year, Same Me,” sometimes with a few curse words added in for healthy measure.

As someone who tries to adopt a growth mindset in most areas, I really struggle with both ways of framing the new year. I’m not going to become a “new” person. And I’m not likely to stay the same, either. I hope to grow and change in ways that meet the current challenges and joys in my life. I don’t want to feel “stuck” with my old ways of doing things, but I am not going to be a new person at the stroke of January 1. I’m not going to get fitter, leaner, or smarter at the stroke of midnight.

Photo by Jess Bailey from Unsplash. Rose gold pen resting over an open yearly planner book.
Rose gold pen resting over an open yearly planner.

And yet there is a strong pull to believe that could happen, thanks to the layers upon layers of marketing that tell us it could be so. And then there are the headlines! Oh, the headlines. “It takes 21 days to build a habit” “Resolution-makers unlikely to stick with resolutions” “Resolution-makes do better with habit-building than those without resolutions” and on and on they go, each one contradicting the next.

Here’s what I know about me… your mileage may vary – I like the fresh hope a new week/month/year bring when thinking about habits or changes. I like to pause and reflect on the previous time span, thinking about how I met (or didn’t) meet the goals I put forth, what things brought me joy, and what changes I could make to get more of those experiences. I like to dream up fun ways to challenge myself and new experiences I could share with my loved ones.

I also know it takes me way longer than 21 days to build a habit. The last habit I intentionally adopted took me 6 months to adopt, and another 2 months before it felt like a natural part of my routine. Sometimes I do better with starting on a “new” block of time, but other times I’ll just randomly start a “streak” on a Tuesday afternoon and keep it going for some period of time.

I know I only have the resources to focuses on one or two new things at a time. I cannot drastically increase my fitness time and my writing time simultaneously. I can’t take up a winter outdoor activity without updating some of my outdoor clothing and gear, which may conflict with a “low-spend” resolution. I do better when I can plan some of these conflicts ahead of time. Maybe I’ll do a low-spend period with the exception of outdoor gear updates. Or I’ll decide in advance that I want to prioritize my writing over anything else when I run short of time and/or energy. My brain likes knowing what the plan is before the conflict happens, even if the plan doesn’t always get followed as written.

All that is to say…. I’m both overwhelmed with possibility and exhausted by the same. I’m embracing the quiet and cold season to reflect and rest. I’ve chosen my word of the year (create) but I haven’t really landed on what that means just yet.

How about you? Do you have plans to become a new you? The same old you? A mildly different you? What is your plan for the new year?

Amy Smith is a professor of Media & Communication and a communication consultant who lives north of Boston. Her research interests include gender communication and community building. Amy spends her movement time riding the basement bicycle to nowhere, walking her two dogs, and waiting for it to get warm enough for outdoor swimming in New England.

advice · fitness · goals · habits · motivation · new year's resolutions · planning · self care

Go Team 2023! Decide on Something Small

Before I begin today, I’d like to remind you that you do NOT have to make changes, start resolutions, or make new year plans. If you feel drawn towards those kinds of things, that’s cool. If you hate those kinds of things, that’s cool, too.

And, if you are a resolutions type of person with your plans for the year all set up and you’re working away at them – go you! We all need to find a way that works for us and keeps us feeling good about ourselves as we move forward. In your case, today’s post might be good to have in your metaphorical back pocket in case you need it one day.

Meanwhile, I’m over here with no actual plans yet, just a vague sense of wanting to improve my overall well-being through movement and rest this year.

I know that will take some planning and some up-front work and experimentation but I need to do some thinking and writing and research to figure out the details.

And I’m ok with that. In fact, as I noted in a recent post, I am in Planuary not January right now.

If you are also in Planuary, or just if you are still deciding what you want to do, or if you know what you want to do but are still getting in gear to do it, I’d like to invite you to decide something small.

By that, I mean to pick a little something that is at least somewhat related to a direction you may want to move in. (That might be the vaguest sentence I have ever written. Bahahaha!)

This isn’t about deciding on Step 1. It isn’t about keeping yourself busy. This is a way of anchoring the space you created yesterday.

So, for example, I know that I want to strengthen my core this year. And I know that any exercises for my core will help. I also know that I will need to get specific at some point or I won’t actually follow though.

But I don’t have a plan or strategy *yet.* Right now, I just have a sense that this is a direction I want to move towards.

So, yesterday, I decided that since on most days I can exercise in the evening, I would create mental space in my evening routine for exercise.

And since I don’t have a plan in place, anything would do for now.

So, I picked 5 core exercises I like and did 5 reps of each one.

It was a manageable amount. It had defined parameters (i.e. it was clear when I was done.) And it felt like I did something useful for my eventual plan.

I didn’t have to overdo it. I didn’t have to create a huge framework for future fitness. I could just decide on something small that would move me in the right direction.

And it is something I can keep doing while I decide what ELSE I want to do.

And I’d like to invite you to give this a try.

Whatever you are mulling over right now, decide on a small version to try. See how it feels, physically and mentally.

If it felt good – stick with it while you figure out what’s next. If it was too tiring or if it felt bad – adjust things for next time.

Note: Judging from my personal past experience, there’s a decent chance that your ‘something small’ will only seem small in comparison to your envisioned future result. When you try it, you may find that your ‘something small’ was actually fairly big. If that’s the case, don’t despair – just go smaller.

And, of course, please be kind to yourself in the process. Making plans, making changes, and trying new things can all be challenging, tricky, stressful processes. If you find these things hard, try to give yourself time to adjust and to recover – you need what you need and trying to ‘tough it out’ may just make things harder. Sure, we all need to persevere and push through sometimes but we can’t stay in that mode all the time.

Here’s your gold star for your efforts today whether you are working your plan, working on a plan, or working towards considering working on a plan.

A drawing of a gold star on a blue background
Image description – a cartoonish drawing of a happy face gold star with big eyes and blue eyelids. The background of the image is overlapping blue lines and the corners are blue blobs.
advice · fitness · goals · habits · motivation · new year's resolutions

Go Team 2023! Make Space.

Hey Team!

I know you are probably saying, “Didn’t Christine say that she was done with the Making Space series and getting started on the Go Team series? Why is today’s post called ‘Make Space’?”

You’re right, I did say that. And it is true.

We’re done with the Making Space series for now and this is, indeed, the first ‘Go Team!’ post.

However, it’s ALSO true that before you can add new things into your life, you need to make space for them or everything else is going to get jumbled.

Note: For the record, it’s TOTALLY ok not to be taking on anything new or changing anything up this month. Some people *like* the whole new year ritual but if it makes you feel pressured or upset? Ignore it completely. Please be kind to yourself, no matter what.

You don’t need a huge idea.

You don’t need a crystal clear plan.

You don’t need to make sweeping, drastic changes.

You can just have a vague idea, a mere suggestion of a direction that you *might* want to move towards and you can begin to explore it by considering how the early, smallest steps might fit into your life.

For example, if you want to begin a meditation practice, you could ‘make room’ today by deciding what time of day would make sense for the smallest version of your practice.

Let’s imagine that you will start with 1 minute of meditation.

Where can you reliably find 1 minute most days?

When boiling the kettle? When sitting in your car before going to work? Right before your lunch? Right before bed?

Maybe you’ll want to give that one minute practice a whirl today but maybe you can consider your efforts to make space as your practice for today.

For most of us, changing or creating habits often depends on small, steady movements forward (and a few steps back and then moving forward again) rather than trying to magically transform ourselves in an instant.

It’s ok to count every part of developing your habit as part of the habit itself.

There are many steps involved in making change and the more steps that you can celebrate, the better.

Good luck! Be kind to yourself!

Go Team!

Here’s your gold star for your efforts today:

a drawing of a gold star happy face outlined in green, surrounded ​by gold and green dots
Image description: a drawing of a gold star happy face outlined in green, surrounded by gold and green dots.

covid19 · Happy New Year! · motivation · new year's resolutions

4 “Old Year” Resolutions for the New Year

New year’s resolution web articles normally help readers to set and achieve their big goals. This year, some authors—including Christine, Catherine, and Natalie at FIFI—have shifted to encouraging smaller “micro-resolutions” or to changing our approach altogether. The author of this article from The Atlantic claims that resolutions aren’t “vibe” for 2022, and instead encourages folks to reflect on “small good things” that reveal why our goals matter in the first place.

Working from home last year during the COVID-19 pandemic, I’ve started a few random habits that motivate me to help me care for my health. After reviewing this article on the “small good things,” I realized that these are behaviours I’d like to carry over from the previous year because they connect with things I value.

So, here are four of my “old year resolutions” for 2022:

#1 Sun Salutations – D&D Style

D20 on a yoga mat
A die with 20 sides on a yoga mat.

Because I work at my desk all day, I need to stop and stretch. But I find stretching boring. So, for my stretch breaks I’ve started doing sun salutation sequences while regulating my breath. But how many cycles do I do?

I also like to play games. So, when I get up for a stretch, I’ll roll a D20. Whatever my roll, that’s how many repetitions of the asanas I do. I get a needed break from sitting and the die roll connects with how I value games and keeping exercise fun.

#2 Empty and Refill Station

Over the years I’ve tried so many ways to drink more water–setting a timer, drinking a glass of water at every 3rd hour, toting water bottles around with me everywhere, using flavour crystals, etc. Nothing seemed convenient for me (my value) to work.

This past year, I discovered that I will have multiple glasses of water in a day if I drink them…right after my pee break. So, I keep a water glass in every bathroom now, because while I’ve already got the faucet on and am washing my hands, I might as well fill’er up. I also wash the cup now and then with the soap!

#3 The “Hungry Enough” Apple

Because I enjoy snacking, I normally don’t wait until I am hungry to eat. Snacking has been made easier during WFH. But I have a sensitive tummy, I will snack mindlessly until I start to feel sick.

Then, I remembered the “hungry enough” apple (or any fruit equivalent) to avoid over-snacking, a tactic I learned from a past colleague. Now I keep a piece of fruit on my home desk, and if I am “hungry enough” to snack I tell myself to eat it first.

I am NOT suggesting that others should police their food consumption in any kind of way–everyone’s relationship with food is their own and I fully respect that. However, I’ve found that I feel better when I eat fruit before other snacks, even though fruit is not my first snack choice.

#4 Permission to Feel Comfortable

I have about 6 pairs of dress pants in my closet that I used to wear regularly for work, but they have not seen the light of day since the COVID-19 pandemic started.

At first, I reproduced my time-consuming rituals and put on uncomfortable clothing items in order to “dress for work.” But after many months of WFH, I have started giving myself permission to be more comfortable. I still make myself presentable for a professional work environment, but at my desk I use a heating pad, aromatherapy, and stim toys that help me to manage my fidgeting.

I am fortunate enough to have the space and the freedom to adjust my clothing and working environment, but comfort while working was a value I never knew I had until recently.

Making Evolutions, Not Resolutions

These are small behaviours I stumbled on over time that have become helpful habits for my health. They are evolutions, not resolutions, that I hope to keep this year and as long as I can because they reflect what I value.

What “Old Year” resolutions do you hope to keep or maintain in the new year?

221 in 2021 · habits · Happy New Year! · new year's resolutions

A serial overcommitter tries undercommitting

I’m a serial overcommitter. I’ve always been bad at not having some sort of side project going – at least one. But last year, I really overstretched, and it showed. Having a baby/toddler at home, going back to work full-time, and doing an MBA on the side would have been difficult in normal times. Add a pandemic, and it became a recipe for constant exhaustion. Don’t get me wrong – I’m not trying to glorify “being busy” (quite the contrary)! I’m not burnt out either, not in the true sense of the word. I’ve sailed close to it a few times over the last year and a half though – too close for comfort.

As a result of my overcommitment, I didn’t exercise nearly as much as I wanted. In fairness, some other factors also conspired against me achieving my “221 in 2021” goal – the pools were closed until May due to Covid, I caught a few of my son’s daycare colds, etc. I made it to just over 160 and was honestly a bit disappointed with myself. But I’m trying to take a page out of Christine’s book and go easy on myself this year (see also: here. Christine is really killing it!).

A picture of a kite flying in the blue sky. This is the ease Bettina aspiring to this year.
Photo by Sigmund on Unsplash

My new year’s resolution this year is to try undercommitting. I’m nearly done with my MBA – I just need to finalise my thesis/field project, which is nearly finished, and take a few more online lectures. The only things I want to do more of this year are reading (which also fell by the wayside last year, mostly because I’d normally fall asleep after a couple of pages) and exercising. I’ve joined 222 in 2022 and we’ll see how I do this year. Here’s to hoping the pools stay open, but I also want to bike, run and hike a lot, which will be easier as the days get longer and my weekends free up from MBA coursework. A bit of yoga every once in a while would be nice too, but what did we say about overcommitting?

How about you – are any of you trying to commit less this year? And how are you planning to do that? Let me know! I’ll keep you posted how it’s going for me (I’ll confess I was very close to making a monthly check-in commitment on this here blog. But I won’t. Ha!).

fitness · mindfulness · new year's resolutions

Kim and Mina’s year of living… poetry

Ah, the “new year”. Time to brow-beat yourself into saying you will do a bunch of things that do not really appeal but that you have a vague sense are “good for you”, insofar as the media has said so. Count down the days until the “new routine” begins to fall apart because… well, because it’s not what you really want or need at this moment, right?

Moira Rose says: ABSOLUTELY NOT.

Resolutions, “new you”s, all that stuff: it’s absolute BS, friends. It’s clickbait; it’s a way to sell you stuff. (Under capitalist patriarchy, it’s almost ALWAYS about selling stuff, esp to women and others taught repeatedly from birth that they are not sufficient in themselves. RESIST THIS. It’s also good for the planet to resist.)

If you want to make a change for you, AMAZING. If you think things are actually moving along about as well as they can possibly move, for now – stay in motion, friends. Stay in motion.

But, if you’ve got a bit of an itch: why not try something completely different, just because, well, it can be a lot of fun to shake things up and see what shakes down as a result?

This was our accidental decision, way back in January 2021. Mina is a big fan of the Word of the Year (#WotY); Kim is a fan of taking down the Christmas tree on 1 January, vacuuming, and then pretending like nothing ever happened. But last January, we got to talking about ways to mark the passing of the seasons, of time, and about how to stimulate ourselves in ways we knew we wanted to be stimulated.

We’re both writers, but both of us do lots of other stuff besides, stuff which often gets in the way of pen-to-paper. So we decided we’d send each other poems – every two weeks, on a Sunday, for the whole year. The poems could be long or short, they could be planned and fussed over or banged out on deadline because OOPS-nearly-forgot. The only thing they needed to be was our own, a snapshot of a moment, maybe, or the capture of a memory. Anything we wanted to express, anything we wanted to share, on that particular Sunday.

To mark the end of our year of writing poems to one another, we’ve decided to share our favourites – one of our own, and one of the other’s – plus a few thoughts on what the challenge meant for each of us.


My overarching memory of this challenge will be of haikus. I love the form (5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables – that’s it); I admire its capacity to capture one image, one tiny slice of the lives we’re living, arrested in stillness like a photograph. The haiku is also a handy container to have on hand for all those Sundays that get away from you, when it’s getting late and you realize that there’s a message from Mina in your inbox but you’ve forgotten to write your poem AGAIN.

This nifty orange haiku reads “Haikus are easy. / But sometimes they don’t make sense. / Refrigerator.” Kim did not write this orange haiku; she only WISHES she had written this orange haiku.

At the same time, though, the gift of this poetry exchange is contained, for me, in the promise of the haiku: to stop (even if only briefly), just breathe, then look at the world for a minute, maybe smile at what you see. To look, twice: to see a thing more deeply than a passing glance can offer. Most of my own haikus were composed in my head on my bicycle; as I was swooping through curves or punching a climb, I’d note and observe and begin to put smells, sounds, and passing glances together. It made the rush or the climb or the slog or whatever so very much, briefly, richer.

Many of Mina’s poems share a similar love of the earth and its blessings, alongside fear for its imminent destruction. Writing from the position of ultra-runner, mountain biker, and committed meditator she’d often reflect on the gatherings of a day outdoors. Sometimes, though, she’d ground herself in the lesson of the haiku: simply stop, stand still, look around, and take careful note – as in this, my favourite of her non-haiku pieces:

The reckonings through observance that Mina and I both practiced in our poetry also allowed me to reflect a good deal on my own strength this year, something that’s increasingly precious to me as I move through some major life changes. This year I realized I am in perimenopause: all the signs are turning up, not least of which are body composition changes that I struggle, at times, to accept. I’m getting older, even though the woman in the mirror is still a girl to me.

This year was also a tough one for my relationship, and not long ago, despite our love for one another, my partner and I decided to part. This was doubly painful for me because I’m a 47-year-old heterosexual woman living in a patriarchy. I ask myself, at my lowest: how many more chances might I have?

It can be very hard simultaneously to feel one’s strength and to hold on to one’s vulnerability – but being both strong and vulnerable is what it means to be human, to accept our responsibilities and our limits, too. This poem of mine, also from March, reminds me of this important paradox.

One of Kim’s poems, also from March 2021.


I want to write ditto. Everything that Kim said. And … I was soliciting ideas for my annual challenge last January, when I realized that so many of my challenges were about self-denial and discipline (don’t shop from Amazon, don’t buy any clothes, don’t drink diet coke etc…). I wanted a challenge to flourish for 2021. There was already enough pandemic deprivation going around. We came up with this poetry challenge. I had no inkling of how attached I’d become to the practice. Even when I forgot and dashed something off in 10 minutes, I was filled with pleasure. There was no grade, just the act of sharing and reminding each other of our creative impulse. Lovely.

Kim mentioned that she wrote a lot of her poems on the bike. I wrote many of mine in the liminal space between sleep and waking, also on runs and a few times during meditations. The haiku form was particularly beguiling. I offer one of mine here from 14 November 2021, that feels particularly aligned with our mission at this blog:

a surge of vitality/a race toward grace/how much longer will I be?

I hate having to choose favourites of anything, so the idea of one definitive, throw-down, hands down poem of Kim’s that I loved from our year was impossible. And easy. Because there were many. So, I chose one of hers that speaks to our mission here, too and takes a different form:

Kim’s fridge magnet poem from 6 February 2021

We’re still writing poems to each other, it turns out! We both so miss the challenge that sometimes, in the darkness of early 2022, we shoot poetry texts at one another across the expanse between us (aka, most of New York State and part of Lake Ontario). Here’s a final haiku from us, a summing up of our year in moments, snaps, and syllables:

The gift of poem/graceful challenge to create/2021

How about you, readers? What mindfulness or beauty-based hopes, dreams, or challenges are you cooking up for this coming year? Let us know!