(Hee. Have I given you an eighties-tastic earworm now?)
So, friends, Romans, bloggerbuddies…what do you believe in?
What fuels you, what inspires you, what keeps you going in the dark times, what makes the good times even better (and no, Wiwille, you can’t just answer “beer”! :-)). I’ve been pondering this theme myself for a while, and here’s what I’ve come up with (so far). Think of it as a little minimanifesto, Claire style.
I believe in family. As quirky and unconventional as my family may be, I love them dearly. Our extended family we rarely if ever see, but do you know what? That’s OK. Because our gang of five get on so well. I’m so proud of my parents and all they’ve achieved, how hard they’ve worked, and how proud and supportive they are of us kids. I adore my sister Sian, in all her stubborn glory, and I just know she’s creating a lovely life for her and my brother-in-law-to-be, Chris. I think my brother Peter is just the coolest – kind, clever, and blessed with one of the darkest sense of humours I’ve ever encountered. I’m so blessed to have a family like mine, and I just hope that as we all grow up (eventually ;)) we can stay as close. I can’t wait to hang out with the whole gang come July!
I believe in love. I’ve always believed in love, and I’ve been lucky to see it manifested in so many places in my life – through friends and family, and now through my wonderful boyfriend. The kindness and thoughtfulness he shows to me each and every day is just stunning…I truly have no idea quite how I managed to deserve a man as wonderful as he. He *literally* makes me smile every day. And giggle just as much. And occasionally go ewwww, when he and Dave are having a ‘burp-off’!
I believe in beauty. Just the gorgeous beauty of our world, and the way it’s everywhere, all the time, if just we stop to look and see. Starry skies, trees waving in the breeze, old people drinking tea and laughing together, the crispness of a new writing pad, the smell of cookies baking, the ground after it rains….
I believe in friendship. I can say, hand on heart, that I have some of the best friends in the world. They are such blessings to me – they make me laugh, they spoil me rotten, they support me when I’m down, they listen and share and care and they believe in me so fervently. I never ever ever get tired of telling them all how ace they are. Ladies and gents….you really are! Whether they are my friends IRL, through the blogosphere, or a bit of both I am just so priveleged to have such awesome folk to call and consider my friends!
I believe in Jesus. I may not go to church regularly – that’s a whole other post. I may make some moral decisions which make more conservative types raise their eyebrows (but I’m of the belief that that is *their concern* – my choices and lifestyle are between my God and me), but when it comes to the crunch I am a Christian. I pray daily for the people I love and care about, I know my Bible, I try to live by it and my choices are certainly informed by my faith.
I believe in peacefulness. The power of quiet. The beauty of stopping. Prioritising well being and peace and stillness. It’s a skill I’m acquiring more and more….I love the gentleness and calm.
I believe in kindness. Oh man, how I love kindness. Such power from one emotion, one drive, one urge. I love to be kind wherever I can, and I think since I’ve truly started indulging in this passion of mine I’ve become (in some small way) a better person (although heaven knows I’ve a ways to go!). I’m guided by a need to be kind, and I think kindness is just wonderful – the power to help, to nurture, to make someone smile. I also love all the kindness I see around me, each and every day.
I believe in learning. Well, I’m a teacher, it was going to feature somewhere! I love helping others to learn, and I love learning myself. I’ve even made myself a little list of skills I want to learn (sewing, Spanish) and improve (photography, dancing, French, cookery, singing, scrapbooking). Plus I love reading widely and learning from that…there’s so much to explore! Oh, and the occasional bit of chicklit, of course…
I believe in charity. And for that matter, giving. Whether it’s my more zany schemes (such as lopping off my hair or losing weight for good causes), or just the day to day sponsoring and collecting and trying to help, I like to give back. It’s one of my dearest desires that one far off day, when my student loan’s paid off and I actually own a home, I’ll be able to give 10% of my earnings straight to charity. That’s the goal, that’s the dream. The giving extends to charity, but also to family and friends – I love sending cards and gifts and treats. What a power – to make someone smile!
I believe in looking after yourself. Sleep, fruit and veggies, water, exercise, not being too hard on yourself, remembering that sometimes things go wrong. And that’s OK. Looking after myself is a new thing for me. I’m getting good at it!
I believe in creativity. Writing, singing, dancing, cooking. Whether it’s writing a blog post, learning a new song, drawing a cartoon (badly!) for a friend’s child, or baking cookies, I love the chance to create. While sorting through some papers the other day I found not one but two stories I’d started then abandoned because of workiness…once I’m down in London, at least once a week (probably while the boys are watching a football match that doesn’t interest me as much – I’m fast turning into a Newcastle and non-league fan, but can leave the big 4 for the main part) I’m going to hole up and work on these… I have other crafty creaty thinsg planned too…
I believe in silliness. When I think of how much of my time I spend laughing, I know how lucky I really am. Giggles and in-jokes and belly laughs and goofy grins are sprinkled across my life like hundreds-and-thousands on a cupcake. Mmmm, cupcakes….
Phil, Mlle Wilson and I, dancin’ up a STORM!
I believe in rest. With that in mind, I’m off to do a few last chores, and then snuggle up in bed.
Good night, all.