achieve joy through chocolate

December 28 – Achieve. What’s the thing you most want to achieve next year? How do you imagine you’ll feel when you get it? Free? Happy? Complete? Blissful? Write that feeling down. Then, brainstorm 10 things you can do, or 10 new thoughts you can think, in order to experience that feeling today.

Well, I’m really into letting go of the need to achieve. My goal is to have no goals. And, anyway, I am already free, happy, complete and blissful without achieving anything. However, it’s hard for a goal-oriented gal to let go of all goals. I would like to read more books in Spanish in order to improve my vocabulary. I also intend to practice yoga and mindfulness meditation every single day of my life. That is all.

December 27 – Ordinary Joy. Our most profound joy is often experienced during ordinary moments. What was one of your most joyful ordinary moments this year?

Some of my most joyful ordinary moments involved impromptu hangouts with my next door neighbors, Phil and Debbie. They are sixty year old grandparents who raised their family in rural Maine and then uprooted themselves and moved to Guatemala to try something new last year (2009), at the same time I did. They are cool parental figures, wise friends and fun, generous neighbors. I am so grateful to live next door to these amazingly kind people who tell great stories and invite me over for dinner incessantly.

December 26 – Soul Food. What did you eat this year that you will never forget? What went into your mouth & touched your soul?

Chocolate. I was in Xela this summer, staying with a Guatemalan family. I was a little depressed, content to lie around and read Spanish novels all day long. One day, I went with my Guatemalan mamá and learned to make chocolate from cacao beans. The process was exhausting and I barely even did anything! That chocolate truly melted in my mouth and I could taste all the love and work that went into it. I will never look at (or taste) chocolate the same way!

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