Last year, I heard about one word resolutions from Gretchen Rubin’s Happier podcast. Rather than a series of long aspirations, select just one word to sum up what you hope for the coming year. Last year, I selected the word “Read.” I read voraciously as a child, but as an adult, I realized that I was rarely reading – maybe only four books a year and those were usually books I needed to read for school. I wanted to read more, but to do so, I needed to make some changes.
I decided on a two-pronged approach. I would try to stop working on things for school or this blog at nine each evening and read for an hour before bed. In addition, I discovered Overdrive downloads from my library to listen to while driving or on my long walks to and from school. (My daughter does not consider audiobooks to be ‘reading,’ but I beg to differ.) The strategy worked. I read or listened to over fifty books in 2016.
Having had such success last year, I decided to try another one word resolution for 2017. I settled on “Light.” I wanted to be lighter physically, having crossed a line on the scale that was unacceptable to me. I’ve sworn off desserts and I’m diligently keeping a food log. The numbers on the scale are beginning to move in the right direction, but I’ve got a way to go.
I I also wanted to lighten up our master bedroom. Our room has a western exposure, so it’s bright in the afternoon, but in the morning, it’s a little gloomy. When we moved in two and a half years ago, we added a new light fixture in place of the ceiling fan and changed the curtains to something livelier. But the paint was still quite dull; the Manchester Tan that is such an easy neutral in the rest of the house is a light-sucking choice in our bedroom.
I knew it needed to be changed, but I dragged my heels – moving our bedroom furniture was going to be so cumbersome, picking the right paint color is a roll of the dice, and we didn’t like the quote we got to have someone tackle the job for us. I’m off from school on Monday, so I started the paint job when I got home from school on Saturday. We went with a very light yellow, more like French vanilla ice cream than a daffodil – Down Comforter by Valspar. I actually quite like painting; it stays done! And to add even more light, I have my eye on a cheval mirror in a local consignment shop to reward myself when I’m done. And moving all that furniture took far less time than I imagined.
In French, there are two words for light: léger (or légère when referring to feminine words) to describe the weight of an object or la lumière, which means “the light.” I’m going to keep working on both senses of the word light in 2017.