I have it! I have chosen my Word of the Year, 2024 and it is (drum roll) … Whimsy!
For me, the word whimsy evokes feelings of joy, playfulness and delight, all things that I want more of in my life. Whimsy makes me smile. There’s a lightness to it, a sort of enchantment, an unpredictability. Whimsy is quirky, wouldn’t you agree?
Whimsy has always had a place in modern culture. From Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland to Michael Godard, the artist who features olives, to the architecture of Antoni Gaudi, the whimsical has made its mark. It’s got me thinking – how can I bring more whimsy into my life?
The best way I know to bring more of anything into my life is to become aware of it. It’s kind of like when you get a new car that you’ve never noticed much, and suddenly everyone else has one too. And here at the beach bungalow, we recently hung a fun, whimsical wallpaper mural right behind my desk. It makes me smile whenever I see it. Suddenly, I’m aware of murals wherever I go.
While surrounding yourself with whimsy in the items you choose is a start, a whimsical life goes beyond literature and art and design. It is playful and spontaneous. It’s walking down the street and saying hi to everyone you see. It’s loving deeply and sharing surprises.
I used to use funny names when I would order at a café, just so I could hear it called when my drink was ready. I used to put little notes inside the books I returned to the library, so someone else would find them. But then life got a little too serious and I just kind of forgot to be whimsical. It’s time to bring it back. Here are some ideas I have:
- Play a clapping game with a child or another whimsical adult! (remember “3 Sailors Went to Sea, Sea, Sea”?)
- Put on your rain gear and dance or splash in the rain.
- Do paint-by-numbers art, only add your own special touches.
- Create a fairy garden.
- Hang whimsical art, or better yet, create it!
- Re-read Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, or Harry Potter, or anything you consider whimsical.
- Dress a little “differently” (Thrift Stores are great sources).
- Make some nature art in a public place.
- Make some whimsical stationary or cards and then send a letter.
- Drink your tea out of a fancy teacup (again, Thrift Stores).
- Make a chalk drawing on the sidewalk.
- Build sandcastles.
- Invite friends over for a tea party in your garden (and make it fancy).
- Climb a tree.
- Visit a place near home you’ve never been to before.
- Paint a thrift store table in a bright color and use it for your tea party.
Oh my goodness, I could go on and on, so many ideas! If you want to join me by making Whimsy your Word of the Year, 2024, it’s easy. Just look around you. And let me know what you see.
Happy New Year everyone!