“Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made of.” – Benjamin Franklin

The long January is upon us.  January always seems to me to be the longest month. I don’t know if it is the calm after all the holiday galas and joy.  I don’t know if it is the short days and early unending darkness starting to take a toll.  Or it could be that January is the only month that does not have a celebratory holiday in the mix.   Some will argue that New Year’s Day is a holiday, but if you are living it up on New Year’s Day, please let us know when and where.   Of course there is Martin Luther King Day, but that is more a day or Service and rightfully celebrated as such for the cause he embodied.  No, it is apparent to me that January has no celebration to break up the gray.  Why they took the Super Bowl from poor January and gave it to February, who is already so rich in celebrations for its short little time, is beyond me.
So I live through January and try to focus on goals and good and great plans for the New Year.  Time itself always makes my mind spin.  Years fly by, but waiting in line at a retail store seems to take forever.  I think about time and timing so often that it is one of my mainstays when I am in my thinking zone.  Timing is everything.  Some people say luck.  I say timing is the core of life, for good and bad occurrences.   Think of how many instances would have been changed by a minute or sometimes a second.  I realize the butterfly effect is timing of sorts, but it isn’t the same thing.
I have learned as I walk this earth that time is the most precious of any gifts.  Time with loved ones.  Time with friends.  Time doing the activities and dalliances that make you happy and give you peace.  If you have time, you are doing swell.   That is why when everyone is hurrying and frazzled and out of sorts, I want to tell them to take the time.   The old expression take time to smell the roses is great.  But I say take time to plant the roses if that is what you love.  Take time to bring the roses to someone you love.  Take time to scatter the roses all along the path you take (that one is more allegorical that literal).   Roses are symbolic of so many things, but taking the time to do with your roses what you may is my point.  Even if it just taking the time to gaze and relax while admiring their beauty.
At any given time, our time will be up here.   I try to live each day of my life enjoying my time, while doing anything I can to make the time of those I love a bit easier.  There are many ways to give a little or a lot, time after time.   Try not focusing on your challenges and take the time to look outward and take in the rest of the world.  The world can be a harsh, confusing place.  Fritz gets wrapped up in the whys sometimes and the hows – “Why is this happening?  How could this happen?”  And I try to redirect him to the reality that we really have no control over the unjust or sad jabs and pummels life gives us.
But I can control how I spend my time.  I choose to spend it laughing and quite loudly.  I spend it loving fiercely and loyally.  I spend it looking forward and trying at all times not to look behind.  I spend it doing all that I love with who I love.  My hope is that you will do the same.  For if we have the greatest gift of all which is life, we have the time to make it count.  Here is to 2014, may it be the year you have the time of your life!