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Blog Post #22 - Happy New Year! 

Book | Memories | Soul | New Year | Stories | Traditions | Senses

Wednesday, January 1, 2020 by Kristen (Kurivial) Hug 

“You have to go out into the world, away from your desk and your home, open your senses. Smell, listen, touch. Take in all sorts of experiences... You must absorb it all, into your brain and also into your soul...Something magical happens when you open yourself to the sights and smells around you. You create a memory.”

These words from the book “Meet Me in Monaco” a Christmas gift from a dear friend captivated my soul and evoked many a memory. The first that comes to mind on this New Year’s Day is the memory of the years of ringing in the new year with the cousins by counting down with those in Time’s Square 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1, clicking our glasses together, then grabbing pots, pans, and wooden spatulas and rushing out the front door. Together, we would bang on the pots and pans and scream at the top of our lungs, “Happy New Year!!” I’m sure the neighbors loved us ;-) But I loved the experience. Even the cold couldn’t keep my spirits down. It was such a moment of camaraderie and celebration and it is one of my favorite childhood memories.

As an adult, I am struck by the simplicity of this magical moment all achieved via pots and pans and I’m drawn back to the quote I shared in the beginning. “You have to go out into the world…” just step outside your front door and sense the adventure that awaits. “Open your senses…” see the sights, smells the smells, hear the sounds of nature’s symphony. “Take in all sorts of experiences…” avoid the urge to turn to the TV, and, instead, play a game, master a new skill (I learned how to use a sewing machine and although I’m terrible, I’m having the best time!), learn another language, attend an event you normally would not, do things that are difficult, but absolutely worth it! “…absorb it all, into your brain and also into your soul.” Don’t let those magical moments pass you by because the real magic of it all, is the magic of the Creator, the One who brought all of this beauty into existence.

So as we begin this new decade, let’s open our senses to all that God might be saying in the simplistic moments and memories. Through pots and pans, and the subtle beauty of life, in the gentle falling of the snow, in the shimmering of Christmas lights, in the church bells that chime marking the passage of time, let's sense His ever present Presence.

As a priest once said to me during reconciliation, our experiences lead us to truth. So get out there, experience life, uncover the truth that God made you, He loves you, He knows you, and He wants this to be your best decade yet! Happy New Year!   

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