Joy List Monday -- Not Quite in the Swing of Things

First week of the new year has come and gone, but I don't yet feel as if I've gotten into the swing of things. The year feels messy (or maybe that's just my studio). I feel slow.

I was feeling a bit down on myself and then I realized that it's all part of the whole. I need to be PRESENT for the messy and the slow. I need to be present for the crabby and frustrated. Life, as always, is a work in progress.

roses, flower arrangements, pink roses, joy, Anne Butera, My Giant Strawberry

Let's be gentle with ourselves as we navigate this year, ok?

I'm not yet sure if Joy List Monday will continue as a weekly feature here on the blog or if I'll just post my lists once a month. Instead of pressuring myself to make a decision, I'm letting myself be content in the undecided.

What are your thoughts? Are my lists a good reminder for you to stop and savor the little things? Do they help you to focus on gratitude?

Joy List Monday: 
a weekly ritual
a reminder to stop and pay attention to the little beauties and graces that make life magical and to set aside time for gratitude each day

My Joy List this week:
  • Finding discounted roses and lilies at the store
  • chickadees calling outside my window this very moment
  • sunshine, sunshine, sunshine
  • finishing crocheting a scarf and possibilities for my next project
  • rediscovering the piles of fabric in my closet
  • soup, bread, togetherness
  • painting, even when things don't go "right"

I hope your first week of 2018 was a good one. I'll be back on Friday talking about sketchbooks.


  1. Really good point about being gentle with ourselves and being present for the messy and the slow. I recently found a gratitude/joy list I started in 2015, but never finished. It was nice to relive the memories. I'd definitely like to continue list-making this year!

    1. Hi,
      for some reason I can not write a comment. I am trying here. Yes, I enjoy your Joy Lists when ever you share, no need to do weekly, I enjoy them anytime and all the time.
      Love, Carla

    2. Hi, Megan. It's always a delight to look at old lists, isn't it? I know it's important to work hard and be disciplined, but it's maybe even more important to be gentle with ourselves. If we can't be supportive and encouraging to ourselves, who can?

      Wishing you a wonderful 2018 filled with many lists of gratitude and joy!

    3. Sorry you were having trouble, Carla. Looks like that try worked, though.

      I was always so happy to see your lists on your blog. Made me happy that my gratitude and joy was spreading!

      Wishing you a joy-filled year!

  2. I love your Joy Lists whether you do them weekly or monthly. I have a gratitude practice, but it's not always in written form. Yours reminds me that I need to write them down!

    1. Whether you write them down or are just aware of them, either way is nourishing and helps us to SLOW down.

      I hope your 2018 is filled with gratitude and joys!

  3. I enjoy your joy lists Anne and they are a gentle reminder for me to focus on the little things in life that might otherwise go unnoticed.
    I am feeling a little blue right now and am conscious that I should be more appreciative of what is around me.

    1. Hi, Simone. I'm sorry to hear you've been feeling blue, but I think it's common in the beginning of the year. We get so excited about all our plans and then we realize that it's going to take a while to actually make them happen. At least that's the case for me.

      Hope you're finding lots of little joys to celebrate today!

  4. Hi Anne. Boy, I can relate to the slow start in the new year. I told Dennis recently that "I can't seem to get my motor started." The good news is that I am, indeed, being gentle on myself. Consciously making an effort to savor each day and to "be present". I think many of us are feeling the later. A need to focus on being present. To slow down the pace and just enjoy whatever the day brings. Even in those things that are painful we can find joy, if we embrace the possibilities for change and growth that come from them. Your joy lists always make me smile, and I truly believe that finding you through Carla's blog and then making my own joy lists changed my life forever. Although these days I don't do joy lists on my blog, per se, I do know that I'm much more aware of the joyful things that are in each day, and I believe that has spilled over into all areas of my life. So thank you for sharing your heart here and encouraging others to slow down, live in the present, and enjoy a life of discovery. Whatever you decide to share, Anne, you will bless others as you always have done. Hugs, Nancy

    1. Hi, Nancy. I was hoping that the year would start out a little more energetically, I was feeling so good about things and thought that maybe I'd miss out on the January Blues. Ah well. Sometimes we need to just go with the flow.

      You are so right that even in the painful times joy can be found. Being present and paying attention is so important.

      I'm so happy that I first stumbled upon your blog. It's so interesting how people's paths cross and entwine in this online world. It's brought me so much joy and inspiration (and encouragement) over the years.

      Sending you hugs and gratitude, my friend.

  5. It looks like I will also join the list like you did for this weekend, love it.


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