742. What's next for this blog plus a look at what's gone before

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Last weekend, as an historic April blizzard dropped 18 inches of snow here in Minneapolis, I spent many hours on my laptop moving my blog from the site where it's been for 14 years over to the blog's page on my newer website, The Livelihood Project. (Here's the link for the blog over there.) I haven't closed the old website yet but likely will before year's end, redirecting the URL. As I moved content, I had the chance to revisit some posts I hadn't read in many years. While I didn't transfer over every single post– some of them just need to fade away–I was pleased that many stood the test of time.

Please bookmark the new site and plan on visiting it. If you are a subscriber, you'll soon get posts mailed out from the new site, through Mailchimp, but I still need to do a bit more work to transfer the mailing list. If you don't already subscribe but would like to, click this link. It will also give you option of subscribing to my Dear Reader newsletter as well.

Given that I just took a fresh look at my 740+ posts, I thought it would be fun to choose a post from each year beginning in 2004, a time when blogs were still a new thing. These posts really aren't "the best" but somehow caught my attention now. The links go to the posts on the new site. If you're curious, enjoy!

2004: Day one (the first post)

2005: Comic books as a work of providence

2006: The eye that blinks

2007: When the lights go down

2008: Pick a day, any day

2009: Grace on the floor and in the theater

2010: Mystery at the table

2011: Report from a funeral

2012: The art of work

2013: New Year's intentions

2014: A rule and writing

2015: The person(s) behind a book blurb

2016: To be a person on whom nothing is lost

2017: The free and the brave and the kind

2018: An ordinary day on repeat


[Photo: taken of the undulating bench designed by Gaudi at the Park Güell in Barcelona. It was the first photo header I had for this blog.]

702. The duty of delight

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The Spring 2016 issue of Comment magazine has an essay by visual artist Christen Borgman Yates, “Justice, Beauty, and Habits of Waiting.” The essay emerges from a review of a new book: The Justice Calling by Bethany Hanke Hoang and Kristen Deede Johnson.

It was an ink and graphite drawing in the piece that first caught my eye, and the pairing of the drawing with its title that held my eye and my thoughts. This image of a woman, head tilted back and to the side, with a smile broad enough to match the finest piece of good news has the title, “Having Considered the Facts.” Usually facing the facts is a grim sort of task, but here Yates reminds us that there are also facts that delight, and perhaps these are the facts that supersede all others.


You can see the full image of the drawing at Yate’s website at this link (scroll down). I hope you'll click around on her site and enjoy her other work as well. You can also read her full essay/review in Comment at this link. I particularly liked what she wrote about Dorothy Day and her commitment to “the duty of delight”


[Photo: Upper: taken of bee balm on the campus of the College of St. Benedict in St. Joseph, Minnesota earlier this summer; lower: taken of page from Yate's Comment essay/review.]

668. New Year's intentions – 2016

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At the risk of boring some of the long-time readers of this blog, I'm once again posting my list of New Year's intentions, as I've done twice before. I hear from readers that this list has been meaningful and that it has been borrowed, adopted, adapted, and printed out. May it be helpful and welcome yet another year.

The list is largely the same as I when I posted it last year but for a few changes. As before, I use the word "intention" rather than "resolution," because it implies something to work toward, move toward, rather than something at which you either succeed or fail. Part of the reason I like to revisit this list – need to revisit this list – is because these are things I still keep moving toward myself. The process is lifelong.

Here's what I'm intending:

  • Experiment more.
  • Create more; consume less.
  • Trust more; worry less.
  • Read more; write more; watch less.
  • Write more of what lasts longer.
  • Waste less time.
  • Spend more time in "creative idleness".
  • Spend less; save more.
  • Pray more, including for the people who read the words I write.
  • Use more paper, lots of paper.
  • Use a pen more, a keyboard less.
  • Love more.
  • Talk less but say more.
  • Figure out how patience and urgency co-exist.
  • Hope always.
  • Cook more; eat less.
  • Start sewing again.
  • Play the piano more.
  • Pursue truth, beauty, and goodness at every opportunity; realize every moment is an opportunity.
  • Stand up straighter.
  • Speak more often in the strength of my own voice.
  • Find the way to do what needs to be done; sit quietly and wait for the Lord.
  • Accept paradox.
  • Pray more, pray without ceasing.
  • Hope more absolutely.
  • Be more available to and vulnerable with God and others.
  • See the signs, ask for signs; be more willing to step into the unknown.
  • Use less; have less; give more away.
  • Shorten my to-do lists.
  • More intentionally be a conduit for the flow of God's grace to the world.
  • Be silent more often.
  • Pray more fervently for safety coast to coast but live less fearfully.
  • Remind myself as often as needed where true hope lies.
  • Start fewer projects but finish more of those I start.
  • Be encouraged.
  • Be excited.
  • Hope more purely.
  • Be more attuned to the burdens of the people I pass on the street as well as those with whom I share a table or a home.
  • Love God with ever more of my heart, soul, strength, and mind.
  • Thank more.
  • Eat less sugar but more dark chocolate.

I'd love to hear some of your intentions. If you want, you can share them in the comments below or on Twitter (@NancyNordenson).


[Photo: taken of berries and bare branches this week at the American Swedish Institute.]