Today I’m sharing my thoughts on ushering out 2014 with some new “do beautiful things in 2015” hospitality ideas.

Do Beautiful Things in 2015

Happy New Year, Friends! I never thought 2015 would be here so quickly, as it feels only yesterday we ushered in 2014!

How fast the time has gone since I first married Paul, we raised our three kids, now our youngest child is graduating high school this year. Empty-nesting, here we come! It’s almost my 9th year of blogging on RE, and I’m grateful that through my blog I can have a (tiny) bit of impact on others too. This is why I love to share food, the importance of relationships and hospitality, connection–and try to make my life count in a positive way.

2015 goals.

I’m not a big goal setter, because I’ve learned that setting goals and not hitting them can be really frustrating. I’ve learned to focus, pray, prioritize, and recalibrate the things that are not working. I’m going to step up my exercise, create some new healthy recipes (yay!), make a list of friends I need to go see (particularly the elderly), and spend time with the people that I really want to interact with this year. I volunteer for my husband’s non-profit, The Protectors, and my husband and I plan to take off in our VW Westfalia for a few road trips, get our daughter off to college in the fall, and do beautiful things with our lives. Yes, do beautiful things with our lives. Last year we lived out a dream of going to Africa to share Paul’s freedom from bullying message with the Tanzanians, a very beautiful experience.

Do beautiful things in 2015.

This is where hospitality comes in!

My husband and I have a fairly large community of friends, and we don’t take it lightly that we are blessed in this way. I know so many of you have had incredible losses of loved ones, job changes, battles with cancers and health, and really difficult painful life challenges. I get email after email from readers with broken or distorted relationships–people feeling lonely, too busy, or they’re in the rat race of life and they don’t know how to reach out to others. We all need each other!

Secret to joyful living.

I can’t be more serious than to say that one of the secrets to joyful living is reaching out to others. Creating community around your table, in your home, and feeling the power of food in connection and meaning. It happens when you take your mind off of yourself, get interested in the lives of others, get involved in something that impacts and changes the world we live in, do something different, try something new, learn to cook, and create your own happiness. We’ve all heard it many times–love God and People.

Don’t be a victim.

I like to encourage for the new year, people to take ownership of their lives rather than being victims of it. (They never invite me, they never reciprocate, we don’t belong, I don’t know how to cook, my home is not up to par, we have too many kids, it’s too expensive to share a meal with others, people aren’t interested in our life). And to become a person who emphasizes the positive, with new experiences, more connection–and to do something meaningful and beautiful with your life.

Yes, do something beautiful.

The bigger your community gets, the more inspired your life will become, the less you’ll think and worry about yourself, the happier your or your family will be.

So, yes, Abby is graduating high school and the boys are finishing up college. But guess what? They are happy, happy kids. They love people, they see how their mom and dad prioritize “healthy” relationships.

Healthy versus toxic.

Now’s the time to get the toxic relationships out of your life and create healthy relationships, so you can mature and grow and do the beautiful things you are called to do! We often talk about healthy versus toxic. It’s a subject for our physical health, spiritual life, relationships, and even hospitality!

The beginning of the year is when we think about the year ahead–what we want to change, who we want to become—it’s the season of hoping, planning, and wishing. Wishing is good, as long as we make room in our lives for our wishes to come true. One thing that comes to mind for me is when I hear friends say they wish they had time to be more hospitable. Hospitality is not that hard, and actually I believe it’s required of all of us.

Make 2015 count.

Make 2015 the year you embrace hospitality and do something beautiful with your life!

I’m inspired by my readers, comments, private emails, letters of encouragement, emails of success. Please keep them coming in 2015, I read every single one that comes my way.

Do you have 2015 hospitality goals you’d like to share?

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