One Little Word, Resolutions & a Poem

I’m not a fan of trends; I never have been. Always, it seems, I’m outside the box with trends such as colors, styles, books, or hobbies well before or after it is popular with the general public. My deep teal green kitchen was painted 5-7 years before everyone had teal on their walls. Once the color became popular we moved on to something else. My preference for books and movies sometimes arises well after they have hit their all time highs with others. I never seem to be “on cue” with everyone else. And, as I’ve matured, I’ve learned that it is okay for me to be this way and I actually prefer it. So, as you can imagine, I’ve had some trouble with making new year’s resolutions over the years. I’ve never really made them and when I do, they fall by the wayside like most. I think part of the reason is that my resolutions have been weak or ambiguous and not fully inspiring commitment on my part. When you are resolute, you are steady or determined, according to Merriam Webster online dictionary. Oxford Languages defines this adjective as admirably purposeful, unwavering, and determined. A resolution is a firm decision to do or not to do something, again according Oxford Languages.

Nicholas Cage does a fabulous job thinking through the word resolute in the popular movies National Treasure and National Treasure: Book of Secrets. Our family re-watched both films over Christmas week. If you don’t remember, you should watch these films again.

My husband resolved to be more positive in 2021. Up until last night, when insomnia struck me again, ushering in the new year, I had not made any kind of resolution.

All this occurs at a time when many in the education and writing communities are picking their One Little Word for 2021. Again, like making a resolution, I was weary of this trend and for years stayed away from it. Then, two years ago (2019), I picked the word reset. It was the year my husband retired and I think that had something to do with my choice of word. However, I did not pick it until July of 2019. Last year, I picked the word cultivate. I chose this word in January of 2020 and it was just as I was trying to blaze my own trail in environmental education. My intent was to cultivate clients, physically cultivate a small prairie, and cultivate my own knowledge of things that would make good lessons or make me a better steward of the land. By the end of January last year, I was scheduled to see over 1500 students in different venues. Well….you know how that story ends! My cultivation was greatly affected by the pandemic, in which we still find ourselves fighting.

When I started seeing other blog authors post about their “new” one little word for 2021, I felt a familiar resistance. But, as I laid in bed last night, urging sleep to overtake me, I think I found something that I could resolve to do and also be my one little word for 2021. It is the word grateful and my resolution is to be more grateful in my daily life.

The difference this year is that I truly feel the need to be resolute in my choice. I need to live more gratefully for all I have and all I am. Nothing should be taken for granted, not even a word choice.

So, in 2021, I resolve to be more grateful and have this word guide my actions this year.

Today is Poetry Friday. I offer a poem I found by BJ Gallagher in The Gratitude Power Workbook by Nina Lesowitz and Mary Beth Sammons (2013). It’s called Weather Report and I thought it was fitting for me as an environmental educator, living where there are four glorious seasons, and striving for more appreciation of all I have in this life!

Weather Report

“Any day I’m vertical

is a good day”

that’s what I always say.

And I give thanks

that I’m healthy.

If you ask me,

“How are you?”

I’ll answer, “Great!”

because in saying so,

I make it so.

And I give thanks

that I can choose my attitude.

When Life gives me dark clouds and rain,

I appreciate the moisture

which brings a soft curl to my hair.

When Life gives me sunshine,

I gratefully turn my face up

to feel its warmth on my cheeks.

When Life brings fog,

I hug my sweater around me

And give thanks for the cool shroud of mystery

that makes the familiar seem different and intriguing.

When Life brings snow,

I dash outside to catch the first flakes on my tongue,

relishing the icy miracle that is a snowflake.

Life’s events and experiences

are like the weather –

they come and go,

no matter what my preference.

So, what the heck?!

I might as well decide to enjoy them.

For indeed,

There IS a time for every purpose

under Heaven.

Each season brings its own unique blessings.

And I give thanks.

© BJ Gallagher, in The Gratitude Power Workbook (2013).

The Poetry Friday for this first day of 2021 is Ruth from the blog at There is no such thing as a godforsaken town. Click the link to participate or just read some more awesome poetry! Thanks, Ruth!

6 thoughts

  1. I’m there with you about picking words. Resolutions seem tedious at best, however, we have our students pick a word at the beginning of the school year. I toyed with picking my word in August, but am still a “new year, new you” kind of guy (damnit all).

    I loved the poem too! 🙂

    Happy New Year!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I enjoyed reading about your path, taking the time to be reflective and owning it! And the poem, including one can choose one’s attitude, is wonderful. Happy New Year with all the things to be grateful for!

    Liked by 1 person

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