Making Each Day Count

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Private garden in Colonial Willliamsburg

Last Friday’s Six Word Friday used the word “count”, touching on a topic I’ve been thinking about lately:

Making each day count is hard.

So many of my days have a gray sameness to them.  The gray, rainy (and humid) weather isn’t helping, but it isn’t just that.  With much effort, the garden got cleaned out and planted, and some of it is already dying.  The tomatoes are growing just fine, but are infested with some bug.  The hollies are infested with a scaly mite.

The new windows are finally FINALLY done, but the new mini-blinds are not.  It will be at least two more trips to get that finished – once to replace a set that was manufactured wrong; the second because the order was short a set of blinds.

We’re eating out too much because we’re too tired and busy.  Work is into the usual routine for this time of the year – working on audits and getting numbers ready for tax return preparation (I need the federal return to be done first, but I have a whole series of things that need to be ready before then or we can’t do the state income tax returns that I’m responsible for).

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Snapdragons at Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens

But I don’t want my days sliding off into oblivion.  Quite frankly, that’s no fun.  I did that several years ago and at the end of the year, had little memorable to record.  I was really unhappy with that.  It’s easy enough to let just happen.  Lack of attention, lack of caring, and just not noticing anything except what’s right in front of me all contribute to this.

Can I do better?

Yes, I can.

I wrote in my last post about taking a break and just enjoying some fresh air.

I’m not doing as many field trips this year, but we are planning a longer trip and some short weekend trips.  Daily photographs are fun, but after a while there’s nothing really new to record, at least at this time in my life.

I’m not posting in my blog as frequently, but I am writing with much more frequency in my personal journal.  Surprisingly, I’m doing it by hand.  I haven’t done that for nearly 15 years, when I started doing it on the computer.

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Camellia’s decorating a fence in Colonial Williamsburg

But mostly, I can make sure to enjoy the small moments each day brings, from someone who smiles nicely at me in the parking lot or makes chit chat in the elevator.  It’s seeing an eagle circling over the James River as I’m talking to my boss.  It’s going to a local seminar and laughing afterwards with people I’ve gotten to know in the local tax community.

It’s noticing a sale for a bouquet of 100 roses and sending it to my daughter to thank her for a lovely time when I visited.  It’s cooing over a beagle who got his teeth cleaned and is still groggy afterwards.  It’s my husband pointing out that the peony is finally in bloom.

Making each day count is hard on some days, but it makes life so much better to make the effort.

Discouragement Life Lessons

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I am a backyard adventurer, philosopher and observer, recording my life in journals and photographs. Visit my blog at

22 Comments Leave a comment

  1. I figure it all gets done eventually, so I planted one plant this morning and weeded one bed. I will plant some seeds tomorrow. One moment at a time and make the most of each, just like you are doing. Wise woman.

    • You’re so right and I have to keep reminding myself that if I just keep up with it, eventually it gets done. I got some really good decluttering done last year and have done well with keeping it up. I don’t know that it will ever be as done as I’d like, but it’s slowly improving. Thanks for stopping by!

    • Thanks Maria! It is beautiful, but it’s not mine. They’re maintained by professional gardeners at Colonial Williamsburg and the Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens. My own gardens look nothing like that!

  2. I’d love to get outside and walk–if the rain will ever let up. Can’t complain, though, everything is growing well this spring. I need to get back to some of those daily exercises in writing, pastels, etc.

    • The rain has really made it dreary. It was wonderful having such a nice weekend – I thoroughly enjoyed it. And you’re right – everything is growing well. The lawn and trees all look good.

      It’s hard getting back to a routine after being gone. I’ve gone through it myself and eventually you get back into the groove again.

  3. Nancy – I truly loved this post & really needed to hear this advice today!! Thanks for your insight & wisdom. I miss working with you & getting to interact every day.

    • OH WOW! I had no idea you were following my blog – thank you! I miss you too. Sitting by you was one of the best things about working there. I’m glad my blog inspired you. That’s why I keep doing it.

  4. and just one day at a time….your garden is beautiful, that alone is good reason to smile! Keep looking for the good things in life – you’ll find them, I promise.

    • Thanks Becky, although that wasn’t my garden. The pictures were from Colonial Williamsburg and the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden. My own garden is doing poorly – I think the hollies are killing it.

      Thanks for the excellent advice – I will keep looking for the good things. It makes for a much better life.

  5. Nancy – I think that you are among many I know who have had that kind of winter and spring – I know I have. Seems the stresses have multiplied and have nudged the times of joy out of the way. I have been giving myself a good talking to and have a plan to make small changes to find my way back – I am taking my walks again and choosing to do the little things that bring me joy. Hugs to that sweet breathed beagle boy and hugs to you! K

    • I think you’re right, Kathleen – it seems a lot of people are struggling with it. My work environment definitely contributes. We’ve lost a lot of good people the last few years, burned out from all the travel and overtime. I’ve been sorry to have so many leave. For myself, I’m really working at keeping a good attitude and having a good life, regardless of what’s going on around me.

      The beagle sends hugs back to you. He wasn’t too happy when I said I wasn’t asking for treats. He gets plenty here.

  6. Making an effort is the name of the game. It is easy to let life just slide by, but so much more rewarding when you find little pleasures in each day……..keep it up, enjoy the ride…….love, Mom

  7. Despite the problems noted, your garden looks lovely! I particularly like the photo of the flowers flowing along the fence. Like a number of things in life, it’s worth the effort. :)

    • Beth – you are so kind! I’d started to label them and didn’t. The pictures were taken at Colonial Williamsburg. My own garden is doing poorly. I took some pictures to share in a later post. I think the holly trees are killing whatever I put there.

  8. Life is so damn busy and stressful nowadays isn’t it? And the routine gets so ho hum, but life is too short for it all to be stress and routine, so I have been making sure that I do the things that I love (lately that has been reading, reading, reading :)) whenever and whereever I can, and I try not to worry so much about “life”. And I laugh as much as I can :). I love your attitute – enjoying the small moments. That is so important!

    • Thanks for the note! You summarized it very well (and I really meandered around before settling on what I was trying to say). I really struggle with not settling into a ho hum existence – it’s so easy for me to do and then my days feel gray all day and all night. Enjoying the small moments helps a lot to avoid that. You’re right that it’s important to savor them.

    • I would agree that it’s hard to handwrite a journal these days (for me). My hand hurts if I write too long and I usually can’t get down everything that I want due to lack of time. My handwriting is also a lot worse – I’m not sure if I’ll be able to read some of it. I’m debating if I want to type up what I’ve done the last few months and go back to doing it on the computer. My biggest gripe with the computer is that inevitably when I have only 20 minutes to write, 15 of it will be taken up with Microsoft updates. And of course, it’s not as portable as a notebook.

      Thanks for asking the question – it’s a good one. And thanks for stopping by!

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