Sit . Sip . n . Be .

BE fully present. BE loving.

It’s a New Dawn. It’s a New Day.


New Year sunrise

Happy New Year 🙂 . I don’t have any big, or little, goals for the New Year, and I’m curious to see how it goes. I’m just extremely grateful I’ve finally woven some good things into my daily routines (see list below) that have stuck with me; things that contribute to my current level of well-being with health issues (with their ups and downs). So, I’m going to keep on truckin’.

My M.O. (modus operandi) . . . my same ol’ same ol’ . . . is currently working for me well enough and I’m happy 🙂  . Maybe it helps that it’s taken me years to adopt nourishing routines, which keep me healthy and out of the woods. So, I’m stickin’ with ’em! Stress isn’t a friend to autoimmune issues, and New Year’s resolutions sometimes cause stress. So, I’m just gonna BE; be happy with the good I’ve already got.

Sure, I still have PLENTY of opportunities to bring me to loving conclusions for my health conditions, which are asking (sometimes screaming) for compassion. Sometimes it’s hard (!), you can read that story next week, and I don’t always do it very well. But giving loving attention to my health issues that are asking for compassion is kind of a new language for me . . . more expansive than I previously thought. And, I’m learning it! I had learned some of this loving language on my own over the years and thought I was fluent, but nope. Thankfully I’m learning more loving vocabulary, from Jessica Flanigan at AIP Lifestyle. She’s brilliant. I’ll be fluent some day.

Hmm. Now I’M curious about my M.O., since I don’t give it much thought anymore (a good sign that these routines are habits, me thinks). So, I’ll make a list below of what I do daily (I do miss some days since I’m human), and maybe there’ll be something here that you like:

  • SIT.SIP.n.BE fully present every morning, and do my ‘Right Now’s’
  • BE with people I love in person, over the phone, sending texts or snail mail letters (preferred).
  • Send daily Ho’oponopono’s to every aspect of myself and others: apologies, forgiveness, gratitude and love. Once when I was in Hawaii, some women at church told me how much Ho’oponopono helped them and their families, so now I practice it and it’s truly lovely! A nice time for this is during meditation, yoga or during body work (like a massage).
  • Abhyanga most mornings with attention to each chakra. I learned this at an Ayurvedic workshop years ago, and it’s benefits are myriad.
  • Stick to the AIP Paleo diet (with the few reintros I tolerate). I’m learning that something inside of me needs compassion, and my food sensitivities are an avenue to get me to that loving conversation with myself. I’m learning to be grateful for this. And, BTW, I’ve been a champ at AIP Paleo (w a few reintros) for three years now!
  • Recite “Prodigal Prayer” daily (a poem I wrote and I’ll share it with you, if you ask in the comments below) + pray real prayers with Heavenly Father morning, night, and in between. God’s grace enables me to endure and find joy. He is the definition of LOVE. This would be nice to have first on the list, but I’m just dashing down these routines as they come to mind.
  • Fifteen-Minute Pages, i.e. writing for 15-minutes every day. If memory serves, I think I got this idea a few years back from Lance Larsen’s excellent talk “Coaxing the Muse: thoughts on the creative process”. I still have the hard copy from the magazine on my coffee table, if anyone wants a photocopy (just ask me, and I’ll send you one. It’s only available now by audio.)
  • Replenish my sleep deficit. I go to bed nightly at 10 p.m. Years of insomnia made this one necessary, and it’s helping. My incredible integrative doctor, Jeanne Drisko, M.D., has taught me a lot about this and so many other specific things about my health issues.
  • Be alive to beauty. As in, “I never saw an ugly thing in my life: for let the form of an object be what it may—light, shade, and perspective will always make it beautiful.”—John Constable, English painter. This attitude helps me notice and SEE a lot of cool things and people.
  • Make stuff. My mom nudged me back into knitting this winter, so I’m finally getting back in touch with my Inner Knitter. It feels great, so great, to make stuff. I have ideas for more things to create, which makes me excited to wake up in the mornings.
  • Avoid environmental toxins like the plague (like perfumes, and public bathroom air fresheners. I hold my breath a lot in public; discreetly, I hope 🙂 ). This habit keeps me out of the doctor’s office for those weekly I.V.’s I used to get.
  • Love the word ‘LOVE’. Just that, alone, goes a long way, and love starts wedging itself into other things, like thoughts, words and deeds. Man, I’m still a far way off from finding balance, but some days I get close.
  • Laugh. I’m incredibly imperfect (!), like we all are, and for some reason it seems hilarious; hilarious that I ever thought I should be otherwise. I’m glad I can laugh about it. Believe me, I’m still hard on myself plenty, but it’s not worth worrying about. Laughing with oneself is a MUCH better option.

Where is the community service, you ask? The exercising? The blah, blah, blah? It’s there. I do little bits of it, but the list above is what has gotten me to a point where I CAN do those things, and no longer feel like a hermit!

This morning I watched the first sunrise of 2016 (see photo), and it was a beautiful time to SIT.SIP.n.BE fully present with the start of this new year. I thank God for the beautiful world He created. Last night, when the last glowing dot of orange sun plunked below the horizon, all of us on the beach clapped; a sweet way to say goodbye to 2015. We go back home this afternoon to snow and 20º F, so my mornings aren’t going to be quite as balmy. I’m happy to hunker down at home, though, be with family, knit, read, cook yummy things and keep healing. And, of course, bundle up in the mornings to go SIT.SIP.n.BE fully present outside in the snow every day.

Yikes, I’m hungry for breakfast now. Note to self: ask kids what meals we liked last year at Aphrodite Café in Vancouver (to get ideas of new things to cook at home). Something about local venison & blueberry sausage, big salad, chia seed pudding, and gluten-free rhubarb pie for dessert?

Anyway, wishing you a lovely New Year. May you BE fully present with yourself, your loved ones, and feel remembered in the midst of your unique challenges. May you send yourself lots of love. You deserve it.

❤ Gwendolyn


Author: Gwendolyn

Welcome, friend! I am an American writer, based in Utah. SIT.SIP.n.BE is a blog I created to share my passion for slow, simple living, and the importance of camaraderie. Since 2005 I have dug deep and unearthed rich things about life, self, God and others as I've lived with autoimmune disease. In spite of occasional darkest days, there are compensatory the-light-is-so-bright-I-have-to-squint moments that are utterly joy-FULL ... bursting with fulfillment and gratitude . Life can be fulfilling even with what some call limitations. Loving conversations, healing conversations, and learning conversations ARE possible with self and God.

6 thoughts on “It’s a New Dawn. It’s a New Day.

  1. Happy New Year to you, Gwen, from a bunch of Rigbys in North Carolina who just enjoyed a third-year New Year’s Day brunch together. A good start for us. Hope your year is wonderful and joyous.

  2. Well, hello Rigby clan! Nice to hear from you! Your annual brunch sounds like a neat tradition. Much love to you all, and Happy New Year. xo

  3. Love it! Happy new year….

  4. Thank you so much 😊

  5. I loved reading this! It’s incredible that you’ve been able to have the persistence to make all these things routine.

  6. I am slowly reading and enjoying your blog! It seems that we’re discovering a lot of the same things about enjoying the moment. I like some of your ideas and may add them to some of the things I do. I’m so glad that you’ve rediscovered knitting! Since I was a little girl, I have also enjoyed handwork. During college, when I was knitting a sweater, I remember a friend of ours commenting that it seemed such a waste of time because I could buy a sweater for cheaper than I was knitting it (good yarn is not cheap!). I explained to her that it wasn’t one bit about the economics, it was about my divine need to create! For the past few years I have enjoyed knitting hats for all my family and nieces and nephews. My fingers have been itching to pick up counted cross-stitch again. It’s been about a decade since I finished my last piece.

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