Monday, April 1, 2019

No Foolin'

In spite of being super slack in the blogging department lately I've managed to sign up for the tenth annual April A-Z blog challenge. I always enjoy this particular exercise and it usually gives my blog the little oomph it needs to keep sputtering on.

It's not necessary to have a theme, but I know me and know I need a jumping off point if I'm going to write 26 posts in 30 days (no Sunday blogging in the A-Z). I've participated in five of the ten A-Z challenges and every year I say I'm going to write a few posts ahead of the launch date and schedule them to publish. What actually happens is I blog on the fly, and that's likely how this year will play out too.

Let's get crackin', but first my theme. Keeping it short and sweet, and I'd like to think simple except I'm sure I'll manage to complicate it somehow.


That's my theme. It's also my word for the year and I want to dig in a little. My plan is to write about things that delight. Also going to write about a few things that don't because I like to find the silver linings.

A is for Anticipation

I know it's the year 2019, but I'm still using a paper calendar. I'm a big fan of the week at a glance format, and love flipping the page to a new week or month to see what's waiting for me there. That app on my phone doesn't provide the same level of satisfaction as a planner whose pages I can turn, fill up, and re-visit does.

While I do love making plans and looking forward to seeing them materialize, I also take great delight in glancing at the week ahead and discovering a day with no plans on the calendar. It's possible the sense of anticipation I feel for a day on the horizon that's all my own ranks right up there with my birthday.

It seems we live in an age where we don't want to wait for things. We want what we want and we want it now. For me anticipating an event, special occasion, visit with a loved one, an extra special longed for gift, or a trip somewhere fabulous sometime in the future is a huge part of the pleasure those things bring.

I was always that mom who when their daughter said she wanted a new 'fill in the blank' told her to "put it on your birthday list" or "ask for that for Christmas".  Looking forward to new things and new experiences is for me, an integral part of the enjoyment of those longed-for things and experiences.

Hubs and I were talking recently about Saturday morning cartoons when we were kids. While I don't remember a lot of the specifics what I do remember is how much we looked forward to Saturday mornings. We didn't have our favorite programs available 24/7 and there was something about having to wait for your show from week to week that made watching in your pjs feel more like a deliberate experience and less like mindless viewing.

Anticipation brings delight. Not all the time of course (think anticipating a call from your doctor, your CPA at tax time, or a dental procedure scheduled in a few days time), but mostly when I hear the word I think happy thoughts. Good things. Something to look forward to in the near or distant future makes my heart zing a little.

Christmas. A holiday booked months in advance. A visit three months from now from a grown child living many states away. When my daughter leaves our home for a cross country flight back to her own it helps to know when that next visit will happen. Anticipation starts brewing almost as soon as she's out the door.

I like thinking about spring travel in the middle of a long winter, and while I think we've gone a bit overboard on all things Christmas, the month of December is filled with anticipation of the very best kind.

Don't even get me started on babies being born and babies getting married.

I know there's a flip side to anticipation. I know sometimes we can build up an event or looked forward to moment to an unreasonable level, then spend the actual event feeling disappointed and melancholy it hasn't lived up to our mental hype. I think we have to learn to manage anticipation and expectation without becoming Debbie Downer. We all know a Debbie Downer, dont' we?

I like to look on the bright side. I want to wear the rose colored glasses, see the glass as something more than half full. I love having something to look forward to and savor the sense of anticipation that comes along with making plans and living life.

Less Eeyore.
More Winnie-the Pooh.

"Well", said Pooh, "what I like best," and then he had to stop and think. Because although Eating Honey was a very good thing to do, there was a moment just before you began to eat it which was better than when you were, but he didn't know what it was called." A. A. Milne


  1. Great start to the challenge Joyce.

  2. You always manage to get my imagination going with your writing. I “delight” in reading here!

  3. Do you know the old song Anticipation by Carly Simon? I always sing it to myself when I see the starts of my peonies peep up from the ground...and again when the green tight bulbs are waiting to burst into gorgeous, fragrant flowers. (You inspired me to take this challenge. Considering the fact that I'm not generally spontaneous and haven't blogged regularly in a year...well, I guess there's a lot of anticipation, huh?)

  4. I'm looking forward to your delightful A-Z Challenge this month!! Anticipation really is 'the best' part of anything good! :)

  5. So good to see a post from you. I've missed you but know your wagon is loaded with the upcoming wedding and all your many travels. Enjoyed this first A-Z post and looking forward to the rest.

  6. I agree that anticipating certain events (positive ones, of course) add to the joy of it all and I, like you, can really get lost in it. Great post, Joyce!

  7. I was just thinking how you must be getting excited for the wedding! My favorite anticipation is to have trips booked to see my girls and this month there are two trips on my calendar. First, Pittsburgh this weekend!

  8. I can't go without my calendar on the wall and one in my purse too! I LOVE the days with no plans!! I don't get many these days with doctor's appointments and PT, etc. At least you are usually busy having. So true about the Saturday cartoons and how now everything is almost always available to kids. I love the anticipation of trips and holiday's. Babies and wedding are the best. Love the Winnie the Pooh quote.

  9. Anticipation! From as far back as I can remember, I always had something out in both the near and far future to look forward to. Often it was only something small and even insignificant, but worth anticipating. I still do that although its more of an unconscious act now. You expressed the joys of anticipation so beautifully and I can't wait to hear all about the big event later this month.

  10. I love the anticipation, too! Now tell me, did I miss out on something somewhere? Is the photo of your daughter from the last or is she having another baby boy?

  11. What a lovely theme - Delight! I love it.