by Marisol B.

I just finished reading my dear friend Anna's post on simplicity and authenticity for 2014. Her words encouraged me to share my own thoughts and aspirations for MMXIV.

For a few months now, the word pulchritude has come to mind. Its pure definition is beauty; great physical beauty and appeal, and I have been reflecting on how I wish to live up to that standard within my own life, in the simplest and most immediate details.

In my journey for sharing beauty and investing time in the purpose behind beautyfound, I have forgotten to take time for the little places where pulchritude is necessary. Whether it is a closet, or a cabinet; not apparent to the average guest, I am reminded of the importance of maintaining a sense of order and discipline in the most intimate of places.

The above includes my own soul, as every thought, word and action stem from the beauty beneath.

I would like to spend less time in vanities and more time in real and meaningful beauty.

A flower does not concern itself with useless matters. It only concerns itself with being a flower, to the extent of its own aesthetic and origin. Humans on the other hand, lose or regain dignity and beauty in the measure they grow or decrease in virtue.

We are each made more human, with each opportunity for growth.

I also love Anna's thoughts on cutting excess. On the first day of the year, I decided to reorganize a bathroom cabinet and found many products that were unnecessary and underused. I would like to maintain a realistic sense of what is truly needed. Lara Casey shared an excerpt of the book Margin, by Richard Swenson, which helped reflect even further:

"Everything we own, owns us. We must maintain it, paint it, play with it, build space in our house to put it, and then work to pay it off. Perhaps if we had fewer things, we might have more time....

Recognize unnecessary possessions for what they are: stealers of divine time. At the beginning of every day, we are given assignments that have eternal significance _ to serve, to love, to obey, to pray. Instead, we squander much of this time on things that soon will leave us forever."

I will make 2014 count, as I strive to live up to a standard of beauty that brings forth love, compassion, and service as a result. I want to answer the subtle and loud ways in which I am called to grow more beautiful and true to my mission and purpose.