I have a small
confession to make...while I am a voracious reader of books and magazines, and
while I know there is a wealth of interesting information published on
newsprint, I am not really a newspaper reader or fan.I will skim though the headlines of the Red
Deer Advocate, and breeze through the Bashaw Star, and occasionally I will even
read an article, but by and large, if there is something of interest, usually
someone else has to point it out to me before I’ll read it.
So, in a way it is
not only ironic that I have published a newspaper for 15 years, but that I was
even given the opportunity in the first place, AND that I accepted it!
In December of 2001,
as I had some free time opening up in my life, I offered to help Linda Van
Ringen - editor of the newspaper which was then called Chautauqua News.She countered with the offer for me to take
over the newspaper.Definitely NOT what
I had in mind at all.She gave me a week
to think about it, and I hung up the phone and started dancing around the room
in excitement.I had no idea why the
idea appealed to me, how I was going to accomplish it, or what the future had
in store, and I had a short deadline to get my first issue of The Chautauqua
out in mid-January 2002.
Fifteen years later
I still can’t really say why the paper appeals to me so much, only that it is a
not only a unique creative outlet, but also a creative challenge as I strive to
make it something that even I would enjoy reading, and I hope that you enjoy
And to add to the
challenge there are still some days when I have no idea how I will accomplish
getting an issue together and distributed - whether it’s been due to
technological troubles, quickly learning a new skill, or my health situation, I
could not have managed without my friends and various helpers through the years.
Lastly, I don’t
know what the future has in store, but I hope to be around as long as I can.I sincerely thank you all for your support - without
your submissions, and willingness to continue reading The Chautauqua ,I wouldn’t
be able to keep doing this.Thank you so
We have recently experienced the Winter Solstice with the longest night of the year, then Christmas, and New Year’s, and today (January 6) is traditionally known as Epiphany, commemorating the visit of the Magi to the Holy family.
Epiphany signifies an illumination.
But in our lives today what illumination do we need?
In a way, we have too much illumination of different varieties.
We are surrounded by too many artificial lights which blur the line between day and night, extending our waking hours.
We have too much information coming at us from all sides and in multiple formats, that attempts to enlighten us on anything and everything under the sun (and beyond the sun!).
If anything, we need less illumination and more darkness.
Humans used to live closer to nature and its cycles, and unfortunately, particularly with the advent of the Industrial Revolution and subsequent discoveries and technological advances, we’ve lost touch with that vital aspect of our lives.
We want to go-go-go and be constantly on like the sun, never resting, never pausing, never slowing down. We try working longer and longerhours without breaks for meals, movement or just to rest. We cram so much into our days to try to extend them as long as we can. If it was possible, some would like the day to last longer than a mere 24 hours.
But we’re not designed to race around endlessly like the Energizer Bunny. We’re designed to wax and wane like the phases of the moon, and cycle like our day/night and the seasons.
Our bodies are more energetic at certain times of the day, and we naturally require rest at other times. We function best on cycles of 30 - 90 minutes. We naturally want to slow down when the weather gets colder and the days get darker, and be more energetic when the sun is shining.
This new year, instead of doing more, decide to do less and give yourself a chance to rest. The greatest growth and activity in nature always follows the darkness and rest of winter, and so it is with us too.