For more than a decade (wow, that sounds old), I've been picking a word to use as my focal point for the new year.
Some years (ok, most) I've ended up with more than one word, as a second word emerged during the summer.
Last year, I focused on unplug as a way to remind myself to step away from the keyboard and instead take time for myself.
I challenged myself to read 12 books - one book a month. While this may not seem like much, for the girl who used to read a book a week, it was daunting.
I had to force myself to stop, unplug from the noise around me, and instead take time to dive into the written words.
I read novels recommended by Grove teachers, memoirs I found in random ways, and a few "old favorites" from years past. I'll admit I have a stack of to-be-read books sitting around our house.
Right now, I'm meandering through a book I picked up in 2016. I got part of the way through then, but now seems to be the right time to let it sink into my soul.
This year, my word is delight. It came to me in a random way last month, as I began to ponder how to begin 2019.
At first I was skeptical. But as I let the word marinate in my brain, I realized delight is a perfect word for me.
It not only means to "please (someone) greatly," but it also includes to "take great pleasure in," or "a cause or source of great pleasure."
It's a chance to not only take pleasure in the gifts around me, but to have a chance to provide pleasure of some sort, to someone around me.
For me, this may mean buying a box of Tootsie Roll hot chocolate for a friend, because of their love of all things Tootsie Roll, or writing a note to someone who has meant a great deal to me.
It also means stopping and taking delight in the world around me. It also means finding new ways to feed my creative soul. To take delight in how God has made me, as a unique and individual person.
While I'm not one for resolutions, this year I'm finding ways to take delight in scriptures. Each night I'm reading the daily verse from the YouVersion Bible app, and jotting it down in at least three different translations.
I'm also following along a second reading plan, which focuses on specific verses relating to a monthly theme.
With each plan, I'm giving myself permission to sketch out the image that comes to mind as I read the verses.
It's a different way to take delight in the words, their meaning and how they impact my life.
Which ultimately, is the most important thing. I'm taking delight in what I'm doing, seeing, creating and learning.
What are you doing in 2019? How can you take delight in what you see and do this year?
Kaylea M. Hutson-Miller is the managing editor of The Grove Sun and Delaware County Journal. Have an idea for a column or story? She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 918-786-2228.