Turning 40, 50 Races and 1001 Books

Greetings from the land of the living!

After setting Monday Jan 6 in my planner as “the day I officially start my new life” (because December is just a great big free-for-all glittery, sparkly peaceful chaotic party) I spent the first part of the day walking and talking with friends but the evil, sneaky, nasty, hateful virus-who-can’t-be-named (influenza shhhh) attacked me that night and didn’t let me out of his grip until early this morning.  (AND YES of COURSE I got a flu shot, sometimes it just isn’t enough for several different reasons, but this post really isn’t about how you should get a flu shot.  Although anyone who has ever GOTTEN the flu would agree with me that you should).  Anyway.

Happy 2014!!!

I am so glad IT is here and so glad YOU are here and so glad to have energy to type this out.  I was going to purposely NOT write the first week of January anyway, not because I don’t love all the “resolutions” and “let’s get started” and “it’s a new year, a new you” posts, because I do! I do! I just decided not to be seduced by the “shiny new year” promises and set myself up to feel like I had to have something monumental to say!  Which I do and I don’t.

I have lots of monumental things to say- like “HELLO I DON’T HAVE A JOB, A PLAN, AN INCOME OR A SCHEDULE”- Yikes!  But also, I am LOVING not having any of those things and am absolutely certain this is what this year is supposed to look like (for now at least).  (Insert reminder for all the worry-ers here again that I did save up for and plan for this, that P is totally supportive and that we have plenty of money in savings- you know who I’m talking to….)  I do have some part-part-time work lined up (aka locum tenens) in an adorable little town near here, I’m planning to start my online fellowship in Integrative Medicine (as soon as I can get the post-911 payment to kick in- don’t even ask),  I’m staying involved with the ethics committee and clinic at our hospital and am able to volunteer for some things at church and in the community that I wouldn’t be able to do otherwise- all “non-monumental” things I am very excited about.

In this year of the unknown- of more flexibility and spending time with friends and family and being open to opportunities and of trying new things, (as well as the year I turn FOURTY!!) I did write down a few “things” I’d like to do.  I’m calling them things because they are more themes or focus points than goals and some of them may take much longer than a year.  I realize we all have our “things” and I’m sharing them for accountability, but also because I’d love to hear your “things” and ways I can be a part of them- so share below pretty please?

My 2014 Things:

Themes: WORDS and INVITE
1. Writing: I’m going to focus my blog in a little more.  My whole purpose of this space was to focus on gratitude and well…..”cupsrunningover” as that applied to my life in my faith, family, friends, running (and coffee in those cups).  For the last year or so I’ve been sensing a more focused focus that I want to just be more intentional about.  I wrote a little about it HERE and a little HERE but here’s the chase (I’m cutting to it).  I know I am most strengthened and energized when I am using my words to encourage other people.  It is definitely my spiritual gift if you care about/understand what those are and instead of feeling prideful in saying that I’m embracing it and am determined to use it more.  I have seen what the power of encouragement does in my life and in others’ and I am committing to being more intentional about using my words to encourage; if they can’t encourage or speak truth kindly, then I’m going to try to just keep them in my mouth.  I hope that will come through here as I’m writing and I give you express permission to call me out if I’m falling short on that goal.  Deal?

Also, I have a book (or two or three).  It (they) are in my head. (I know I know everyone has a book, but I do too).  I almost have a title for it, which I figure is a start.  Or maybe that’s the end.  I don’t know but I am going to work on it.  I am committing to writing more regularly this year overall and am (finally) starting a writing class online this month taught by my inspiring friend JEFF GOINS.

2. Travel: My goal this year is to go on at least one trip each month to see friends and/or family.  I’ve already got at least one trip for each month except June, August and October (pending the Marine Corps Marathon lottery Tracy and I are crossing our fingers for!) and I plan on filling those in shortly.  One will definitely be a trip to Colorado Springs, but I’m waiting until the fall for that so I can combine a “three-for”….Along that “invite” theme (and incorporating a “budget” theme), I’m using SW miles and I’m pretty much inviting myself places (including to sleep on couches!).  I am super excited about all the trips in line so far and will tell you all about them because I’m going to use them to do more writing this year (it’s true, it’s true).  If you have a reason and/or a great time that I should come and visit you (and a couch) let me know and I’ll try my best to work it in!

3. Running: I have a couple of running-related goals this year that I am really excited about.  We are returning in two weeks to run the super (awful) cool ORCAS 25K.  Starting with that race as my 1st, I’d love to run a race in all 50 states.  I’m not setting myself a time limit on this one or any other rules, so I’m looking forward to just seeing how that plays out. I’m hoping some of them are combined with number 2 above.  I have committed to running my first 50K this year, after being sidelined the last two years, and I have the opportunity to do some running-related writing as well.

4. Reading: (“Word” theme- get it?) Last year I made a real effort to read more and I did.  This year I am making an even stronger effort to read more books and less random articles and internet-related items.  (Yes I do realize the irony of that since I am writing that on a blog post but my feedly is going nowhere).

As I was working on this post, I got a notice from my friend RACHEL at Under the Tapestry  who was contacted by her friend NICOLE at Brashbiochemist (who I don’t know and haven’t met- cool huh?), about participating in this really cool reading project.

You may have seen this list before?  Well, the three of us are going to rotate selecting a book off the list (randomly or intentionally- picker’s choice) and read it and discuss together in some format.  We’ll keep a record here (it’s a public google document, you can use it too!) and we’d love for you to join in if you want?  Maybe there will be a virtual book club or a private group set up somewhere at some point- I’ll let you know.  For now, you should check it out because I think it’s going to be fun.  Book number “one” is really number 814 Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Master of Ballantrae and it’s free on kindle.  So let me know if you want to play, and if you have a blog and want to discuss- the more the merrier! (Caveat: In the last year I’ve finally given myself permission to stop reading a book if I just don’t want to finish it for whatever reason, so if it makes you more excited about the idea, I’m continuing that rule with myself here because life is short and I love to read (and I currently have 193 books on my kindle app)).

I have so broken every single blog-writing rule in this post.  In my defense, I just said I was going to write more, I didn’t say I was going to be a professional blogger!

I hope to “see” many of you in one format or another this year- on the run, in the airport, on your couch, in our book group, or any other cool way we might cross paths.

Happy 2014!  Do you have any themes to share?

Doesn't this just make you feel like there's a great big year out there to step into?
Doesn’t this just make you feel like there’s a great big year out there to step into?

11 thoughts on “Turning 40, 50 Races and 1001 Books

  1. Joan Muench January 11, 2014 / 9:46 am

    Encouragement is a great gift and we are all in need of it,especially the body of Christ. Use it liberally. ( 1 Corinthians 14:12 ) Love Grma

    • Dawn Muench January 16, 2014 / 7:46 pm

      Awww- love you too Alene my inspiring friend!!

  2. Karen G January 12, 2014 / 11:41 pm

    Love this blog! I don’t know “blog rules”…it is just fun to read! I read the 1001 books book list, and, sadly, have only read about 20….wow! I may attempt to read with you….but I may have a hard time keeping up with that, our book club books, & my Bible…but it might be fun to try! 😉

    • Dawn Muench January 14, 2014 / 1:51 pm

      Karen- I love you- you’re the best! Please play with us b/c it is certain to be more fun if you do! We haven’t even mentioned time rules….and I’m currently reading about 14 books so I hear you! I agree- fun to try!

  3. Susan Stilwell January 14, 2014 / 4:12 pm

    I’m so excited for what 2014 holds for you, Dawn! And I hope it includes a couple of visits with me 🙂
    (Praying you’re on the mend, too!)

    • Dawn Muench January 16, 2014 / 7:45 pm

      Susan! Yes of COURSE I must see you! I haven’t known you a year and we’ve already got two international trips under the belt 😉 we set the bar high!

  4. Mandy January 20, 2014 / 1:16 am

    I am hoping for one of those months of travel! Mostly just thankful for your encouragement. Wish I could join you in all your exciting adventures, but I’m content to get coffee and a run and some prayer time!

    • Dawn Muench January 20, 2014 / 7:17 am

      Yes to all of that! I love “traveling” to your house 🙂 Mandy!

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