This has been a hard year. Really hard and stressful in a lot of ways. And it's not over. But when I found myself at home again this fall and not working like I had planned, I felt drawn back into scrapbooking. Which led me to take Ali Edwards' photography class "Lens of Joy." It's not a technical class. It's a class designed to help you find your creative voice through photography and it just called to me.
One of the things that Ali talks about in her class is that she uses her camera to help her find joy, even in the hard or stressful moments. And that got me. I can't control the difficult things going on around me but I can look for the joy in them.
And so I've been looking for joy in the hard moments and decided to write a few things that are bringing me joy this week just in case it speaks to anyone else.
1 - The joy in saying "yes" to my kids. Emily texted me from Target begging for me to buy her an album. I've had to say "no" to a lot of things but this was one thing I could give a different answer for. And yes, we love the album!
2 - The joy in the newly-fallen snow we got yesterday. It's early, it was unexpected, but it's so beautiful.
3 - The joy in having the ability to be home with my kids when they are sick. My heart aches for all of those parents who don't have this choice, including me many, many times.
4 - The joy in being someone that my children share their passions with. As much as I feel like I don't want to hear one more time about how awesome Band XYZ is or how AMAZING so-and-so is at solving a Rubik's Cube, I'm so grateful that my kids want to share everything that they love with me.
5 - The joy of being present, of being here to watch them grow up. I've had a lot of health problems this year, but none of them are terrible or remotely life-threatening. They're just not fun to deal with. And not everyone is that lucky. This past week, I've heard terrible news about three different people who have impacted my life in some way. They are all facing extraordinarily difficult health issues and my heart breaks for them. So how can I not find joy in simply being here with my kids?
So go and look for the joy this weekend! It's there, I promise. :)