We’re headed to Kindergarten! 31 in 31 turns 5!

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We started the 31 in 31 group in 2017. Almost five years old. We’ve cried it out, we’ve potty trained. We’re coming into our own but still have a lot to learn. We ask insightful questions no one can really answer. 

My 31 in 31 group is about to attend our metaphoric kindergarten year, and I dare say we have the enthusiasm/jitters of anyone in that actual station in life. Have you met a kindergartener lately or remember when someone close to you used to be one? On his first day, my youngest son cried for hours before he laughed and played with his newfound friends the rest of the afternoon. I know this because his teacher called me at lunch to tell me he had finally wiped away his tears and was having a great time. God bless her. 

If you don’t know what the 31 group is, you can check out what group member Sarah Bonnette wrote about it for the paper two years ago when we resurrected the group post-January to handle the Covid lockdowns. Typically, we join forces every January 1st in an effort to pursue some creative, athletic, spiritual, intellectual, or otherwise overall beneficial daily practice– 31 somethings in the 31 days that make up the month. The core principle is baby steps. The core belief is that they will add up to something wonderfully meaningful. The core joy is each other. 

And it’s starting again come January 1st, 2022. As always, I’ll be doing one small painting each day for 31 days and posting it to my blog. Sometimes the paintings are eh. Sometimes they are pretty good. I’ve come to realize the former is a prerequisite to the latter and my greatest teacher. What a relief it is to know it is not only okay to stumble but essential!

All this is to say, if you are an artist (and ask any kindergartner if he or she is an artist, and I bet they will say yes), a seeker, a writer, a yogi, a musician, a runner, a walker, a cook, a doodler, a thinker, a poet, a do-gooder, any or all of the above, something entirely different, I encourage you to join our group. I am confident I am speaking for the entire group when I say, we would love to have you

Just click here, hit “join group.” Easy enough, right? Sometimes the hardest part is just starting. And if you want to check out my 31 in 31 from last year you can do so here. Making it into an ebook was one of my greatest tech accomplishments. 

And whether you are a fifth year member, brand new, or somewhere in between, let me know in the comments how you plan to participate this year. Are you an excited, school-supplies-all-packed-and-labeled kindergartner? An apprehensive will-there-be-legos-and-will-I-make-friends one? Let me know!

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Picture of Denise Hopkins

Denise Hopkins

December 8, 2021

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2 Responses

  1. I’m in! Just love this whole concept and what a great way to start a new year! A bit about me: I was born and raised in N.O. and like many natives lived there all my life (did live in Covington 4 years following Katrina, but my life was still based in N.O. so it never really felt like a move then), even went to college in N.O. My entire extended family with few exceptions all live in N.O. But last year 2 months into the Pandemic I decided to make a BIG MOVE to Bay St. Louis. While only 50 miles away the Coast is worlds apart and my only regret is that I waited so long to make this move – a silver lining to what was a pretty grim 2020. My theme became New and Different. This has become my criteria for finding a life worth living after 10 years of pitfalls, disappointments and a few traumatic experiences thrown my way. So, yes, I want to take part in 31 in 31 – and it will involve painting, which is something I tried (no, actually DID) 15 years ago, but I haven’t touched a brush in the last 10 years. I recently moved, and just the other day ran across my packed art supplies that I’ve been carting around for 10 years. Wistfully I mused about setting up a space to paint again. But didn’t do it. And now I will!

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