We have a ritual in our family, to see in the New Year. It doesn’t require staying up late or drinking lots of alcohol. It’s a simple concept, but a powerful tool for setting up for the New Year.  I read somewhere. a long time ago that it is very good for families to have & create traditions that help to give a sense of belonging & meaning to our lives, & this is one of them… the initial idea came from the Learning Connexion, in Wellington.

dscf0910 dscf0892 collage-2012

We each make a  collage of our hopes & dreams, goals, disciplines, things we’s like to bring into our lives. All you need is a big stack of magazines, which you can get cheaply from the Op Shop. You do need to be selective though & get ones with good quality paper, & avoid the bitchy Women’s gossipy mags, they are really negative. You need some big sheets of paper, or you could tape together some sturdy A4s. Decent scissors & a glue stick, much better than PVA as the paper doesn’t buckle. We put a big  double sheet on the living room floor, pile all the mags onto it, & go for it. You’ll need a good couple of hours to complete the process.

Firstly browse the mags & pull out any images, colours or words that catch your attention, try to let this be an intuitive process, so don’t think about it, & especially don’t limit your choices. When you have run out of mags, or have a big enough pile of pics, spread them out & start to put them onto your paper. We’ve found by trial & error that it’s good to cover the whole page with big broad pictures to start with, so you don’t get left with lumps of white. After that layer up the images & words into an image that pleases you & covers all the areas of life you want to focus on. What is most interesting is looking at your own & each others collages & seeing the patterns, the hidden metaphors, the symbols etc.

Geoff & I pin ours up in our bedroom so we can look at them first thing in the morning, positive thoughts & focus. I have about 5 years worth of collages, I like looking back over them & seeing how my priorities change from year to year (don’t forget to put a date on the back).


We wish you all many blessings for the year to come, & may each of us, in our own quiet ways  bring about peaceful & gentle change, in the words of Michael Leunig:

God, help us to change. To change ourselves & to change our World. To know the need for it. To deal with the pain of it. To feel the joy of it. To undertake the journey without understanding the destination. The art of gentle revolution.