This time of year, I often start to feel jaded, as though my 2006 shininess has rubbed off and all things, including me, need a bit of a spit and polish.
Certainly, today, the unpredictable weather outdoors and the unpredictable child indoors didn't help. There are great clusters of old leaves in every corner of the garden, and similar piles of rubbish cluttering my mind. I'm melancholy, in the way that I used to be as a child. Lonesome (though I was one of three) and longing for company.
(Ah, my child wakes. I can hear the Bim quietening her with a gentle 'Ssssh'. I tap the keys more lightly; pray she will lull back to sleep. Enough demands on my frayed self for one day).
Taking a quick back-check, I realise that the year's tail-end often causes me to pause like this. I'm usually exhausted in December, finding a small drop of juice for Christmas, then collapsing for the final week - only to emerge re-energised by the actual and symbolic hope of a new year.
And this year I'm going to follow the example of my very good friend Luke. A true lover of life, Luke has always said he sees no point in giving anything up for the New Year; that's so negative. His advice is to take something up instead. How's that for positive thinking? And it doesn't have to be just one thing, either, the more the merrier, I say.
So let's have a think, as the days reach their darkest, and there is promise of light and newness growing from the old - think of 3 things, 3 things we want to take up in 2007. The more wistfully longed for, the better. The more previously procrastinated over, the better. I'm going to take time to write mine down over a glass of mulled wine one late December night sometime soon and will share them forthwith.
Join me in fulfilling three dreams.