...is change really needed within another year for us or are we to rather glimpse...
...more further into our true authenic selves as evidenced within our daily lives?
If there's one reliable truism within the world of Preppydom and all-things-W.A.S.P...."change" isn't always a welcomed New Year resolution, restitution or reasoning as to how to approach yet another year which now lies ahead of us.
Words us Preppies do embrace with enthusiasm are ones such as: traditional, generational, classic, tailored, appropriate, historically-accurate and such....keeping things relatively the same from one generation on into the next is the predominate worldview of any dyed-in-the-wool Preppy. Having to reinvent oneself either completely in one fell swoop or in stages seems as alien to a true Preppy as would be an actual alien spaceship landing onto our houses' rooftops and Santa showing up as some spaceman with super-galactic space toys heaped into a big silvery goodie bag hoisted onto the shoulder of his astronaut-looking duds. Egad indeed!
Hmmm, "change" and "Preppy"......this seems a bit too much on the oxymoron side of defining our personal lives, lifestyles and decision making however....."fine-tuning" and perhaps a better-defining of ourselves, yes, we can embrace this kind of New Year's refocusing.
For some years now, I've chucked the usual New Year's "Resolutions" listing for rather utilizing the usually quieter winter month of January to mull thoughtfully over various "refocusing", "refining" needed (or just desired) within my own life for the year ahead.
Some years this has resulted in radical redefining logistics such as our two, as of yet, h.u.g.e....lifestyle moves both literally and figuratively: first from Charlotte, NC out to ski town Park City, UT and then after my mother's passing, moving back home to the Lowcountry environs of an island off the coast of SC in order to help my father out.
All throughout this however, anyone who saw us where we were living and who walked into our houses could tell that yes, this is still the Lachlan and James we know and that's just how Preppies are within their lives... consistently classic to their upbringings and families' traditional parameters. Some Preppies may be may be more sportier than others, some may be focused more philanthropically than others, some may be in the news and others eschew any kind of public notoriety for themselves, some may be living in family homes passed down through the generations and some may be living in modern city lofts, some may be more formal and some may be a lot more casual but overall, the traditional structuring of Preppy Parameters are still seen throughout the various seasons and chapters of Preppies' lives.
I've been thinking about this today as I've been reading New Year's Resolutions, Changes, To-Do's from new items, magazine pages, Facebook postings and such. I'm sure that this stems directly from my personal Preppyness but honestly I've never felt the need to do a complete "Change Over" on my physical self, personal style, current life situation, current relationships or whatever though I have actually within the past few years, let slide away from my life those "frenimies...so-called friends who are really just toxic debbie-downers" and that was one of the best quietly-active refining decisions I have done to date. Now as to my hair colors and various hair cuts throughout the years, yes, there's been lotsa' fun changes here and there but all within what would be considered essentially still-Preppy. Throughout the years of Mall-Hair n' Mullets, Punk, Grunge, Boho, Goth, Stripper-stylin', Gamine Starlets and such...none of that influenced me one bit as to my overall look and personal lifestyle actions or reactions. I'll let Hollywood, fashion magazines, the music industry and reality shows radically change-up other folks...
That being said, I did back around our 5th wedding anniversary which was during the Spring of 1996, consciously decide to begin living a more thoughtfully-environmentally centered existence and as much more authentically, simply, sincerely, spiritually as I can. This was one of the reasons we totally stepped away from the Charlotte Yuppie Preppies rat-race that surrounded us in our first years of married life and thus so, happily divested ourselves from a whole lotta' "stuff" in order to move out to the mountains of Utah to an adorable and, at that time, still so real-ski-bum place as was Park City.
For James and I, our authentic-Preppy-parameters definitely includes spending large doses of our lives within small, resort-like historic towns which are surrounded by nature you can literally walk out your front and back doors on into....whether to ski or hike on the mountain or to kayak, fish, hike and hunt on a barrier island. And in the future, this may include walking out the doors into James' family farm's fields and woods.
"Know Thyself" is one of the great inner axioms the Ancient Greeks gave us to mull over the centuries with..."To Thine Own Self Be True" is another one of those.
Where to "Find Thyself", thy true self may be as closer to home and much easier to realize as one would guess. Who needs how-to's from gurus, books, magazines and even blogger ramblings when evidence as to who you really are,what you really are personally drawn to within this daily journeying we call our lives is actually............ directly in front of you.
Just this afternoon while thinking about this before writing this post, I went around the island house here and snapped a few of in-situ vignettes which are "totally me"! As in, I put this stuff there, I live with it daily (well, weekly as I also am in-town at the cottage as well some days) and obviously I use, am attracted to, enjoy these various items placed on a windowsill, my bedside table and a little Art on a Teacart space I carved out of part of the diningroom for watercoloring.
Looking at these pictures, it's fairly obvious that for this individual named Lachlan, aka ole' me, things like Nature, Art, Travel Mementos like a small bust from Paris, a very sentimental raku vase from Australia, copious Books, Antiques and Family Things such as small watercolors by my Great-Grandmothers (who were painter friends), handed-down pearls and so on are all what make-up who I am today and will most likely still be in the future. It's also evident that I like color tones such as peony pinks, celadon green, creams, dark woods, buttery yellow and spots of gilding in gold and silvery tones. I also tend to "layer" as in books stacked, plants grouped and a photo I took of a butterfly on daisies in the garden of Anne Hathaway's cottage in England being placed in front of a Lowcountry watercolor by our friend Nancy Ricker Rhett.
This New Year of 2011.....rather than try to completely reinvent yourself and your lifestyle surroundings.......how about taking a good peek into who you really are at-the-core through the lens of a camera taking pictures of how you actually live?
You may be pleasantly surprised and quite satisfied, you may be energized to tweak a little bit more of your life as you're living it or you may be shocked into real-change action but at least you'll be moving within an authentic direction instead trying to totally change for change itself.
Happy New Year everyone and Happy Authentic You too!