A New Year, a Blank Page

My two youngest bought me this Typoflora planner/diary/journal for my birthday and it’s just perfect. It’s been years since I’ve had the ‘right’ one of these that suits my style of relaxed planning and space for reflections or just recording snippets of a day. I love that this is nature focused and isn’t too large – and it came in a hardcover keepsake box. 🙂

I was surprised to see this phenology wheel; something I tried to start in the past but never got past dividing the circle properly. A Phenology Wheel is a circular journal or calendar that encourages a routine of Earth observation where you live. Phenology wheels have been popular in Charlotte Mason circles for the study of nature but some that I’ve seen are just so artistically beautiful that the average person is discouraged from any attempt to start one.

There are a couple of places that break the process down to make it more do-able: Nature Study Australia, Raising Little Shoots.

2023 – a blank planner and a resolve to make time for God’s word and being faithful in prayer in this new season. Psalms 42 & 43 expressed it well for me:

‘As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God.
My soul thirsts for the living God.
When can I go and meet with God?

By day the Lord directs his love,
At night his song is with me –
A prayer to the God of my life.

Send forth your light and your truth,
Let them guide me;
Let them bring me to your holy mountain,
To the place where you dwell.’

‘When can a go and meet with God?’
In rereading For the Family’s Sake by Susan Schaeffer Macaulay, I read again how we can make going to God a duty and not a joy. Choosing the best time for giving full attention to God, seeking HIS kingdom first is the key to this. She shares that reading about Charlotte Mason’s daily practice helped her in this when she was a very busy mother looking after her family as well as being involved in the L’Abri ministry.

An early walk this morning took me over a carpet of jacaranda flowers 💐 and a close encounter with one of my favourite birds – the brown cuckoo dove. Some loveliness to begin a new year. ❤️🌸

Brown Cuckoo Dove

17 thoughts on “A New Year, a Blank Page

  1. Thank you for sharing these thoughts on a blank journal and also taking and giving your best time, not your leftovers, to God. I found that interesting and encouraging in Susan’s writing too. It also appeared in the biography I read last year of Charlotte. I have a new journal too and so far I am using my early mornings to write but Iris did get up super early today. She likes those trees too and calls them the Purple Trees. I love the Dove photo. Two days ago I spotted a bowerbird nest with lots of blue plastic and Mrs on the nest. I stopped and watched for quite a while and would have liked to draw it but I’m hopeless. I’ve never seen a phrenology wheel. I wouldn’t even attempt it, I’m that bad at any type of art. Happy New Year!

    Liked by 1 person

    • We’ve had a bowerbird making a nest not far from us. I’d never seen one before but when I saw all the blue bottle tops and other bits of plastic, I guessed what the bird was. I was surprised that the male & female are so very different from each other. You would think they were completely different types of birds.
      I’m on the lookout for that bio secondhand – it’s just a wee bit expensive to buy new!

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      • I saw a bowerbird nest when touring a garden in the Blue Mountains years ago and the owner gave us a lot of info on them so I knew what it was and was so excited. They remind me of blackbirds in how different they are, the males and females. I know what you mean about the book budget – I saw the price and saved for a while and then felt very happy with my purchase, but yes, the ouch factor!

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  2. Happy New Year, Carol.

    Thank you for sharing your inspiring posts. Journals are the best gifts.
    I think I remember reading about phenology wheels, but I had not had a visual of one. The link you supplied had beautiful examples. I would love to try one one of these days.
    I agree…our first moments are the best to give to God. It has taken me years to make a habit out of it, and now I long to begin my day w/ time alone w/ Him first. Even when my husband was home for three months during our move, I learned to journal my prayer time bc I was never alone; and while we were on the road for several days during our move, and I needed to have my conversation w/ God first.

    Liked by 1 person

    • If I can I like to walk while I have a prayer time. I tend to be less distracted than I am at home. My husband has been working from home for the last two years and it’s certainly changed the dynamic!
      May 2023 hold all that’s good for you & your family!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, I do the same too now that my hubby is home and working 24/7, with an international business and zoom meetings. Plus I can fully concentrate. No toddler distractions or anything else.

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  3. Lovely thoughts! I haven’t seen a phrenology wheel so I’ll have to look into it. Your journal looks wonderful! I love journals. In fact, I have a journal addiction so it’s not good for me to see any type of journal, lol! And isn’t it interesting that we know to seek His kingdom first but it’s so hard to do it. My plan this year is to read through my Bible completely. It will be a big challenge for me to keep up with regular reading but I’m determined to do it. All the best with all your plans for 2023: personal; schooling; time with God; etc.!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Cleo! Oswald Chambers said:

      ”A warning which needs to be reiterated is that the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the lust of other things entering in, will choke all that God puts in. We are never free from the recurring tides of this encroachment. If it does not come on the line of clothes and food, it will come on the line of money or lack of money; of friends or lack of friends; or on the line of difficult circumstances. It is one steady encroachment all the time, and unless we allow the Spirit of God to raise up the standard against it, these things will come in like a flood.”

      So true!
      All the best to you, too, in 2023 🙂


  4. And happy new year to you!

    Your journal with the phenology wheel is already so lovely I don’t think I could write in it 😉 , and if they come more beautiful than that!

    May your new year be full of good books, that get read, and written (?) on .

    Liked by 1 person

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