Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Thoughts as I welcome 2020 January 1, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 5:00 AM
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Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


TODAY THE SUN rises and sets on a new decade, 2020. That number sounds so surreal to me, someone who came of age in the early 1970s, at the end of the Vietnam War, a time of unrest and discord, of young people raising their voices.

But has anything really changed? The sun still rises. Discord still exists. And if it didn’t, I’d worry.

These are certainly trying times. But every generation has faced challenges. The difference now is the instant speed at which we become aware, how close our world has grown (or maybe not) due to technology, how rapidly untruths spread. I remember my mom telling me once how frightened she felt following the attack on Pearl Harbor. As a nine-year-old living in rural Minnesota, she had no concept of place, of distance. She thought the attack occurred only towns away.

I am, of course, simplifying the differences between yesteryear and today. One could argue more points about the ever-changing world. And I likely would not disagree.

But at the very basic, we are all just human beings with wants, needs, desires, hopes and dreams. For some those are grand and far-reaching and social media attention grabbing. For others, life is less complex. I, for example, am content with a quiet life, with loving and being loved, with serving others, with experiencing joy in everyday moments, with finding delights in the simple. A sunset. A sweet, “I love you, Grandma.” A good book. A Sunday afternoon drive. A hoppy IPA from a local craft brewery. Chats with friends after church.

In 2020, I desire more of those moments that frame a life of contentment. I desire, too, more time with my adult children and their families; I’d love for all of us to spend a few days together. I pray for improved health for family members.

Whatever happens in 2020, I am grateful for another year. To live. To love. To write. To photograph. To be the best person I can be. To treat others with respect and kindness. To show care and compassion. To listen, an art that seems in short supply in a me-driven world of talking over others. To empathize and make a positive difference whenever and wherever I can. Thank you for being a part of my life, for embracing my creative endeavors and for all you do to make this world a better place.

Happy 2020, dear friends!


© Copyright 2019 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


14 Responses to “Thoughts as I welcome 2020”

  1. What a lovely post, Audrey! And what a beautiful photo you chose for this! I’m so glad you are here. Happy New Year my Dear Friend. ❤ ❤

  2. Virgil Says:

    Well said Audrey. Thank you for being one of my very special and understanding friends. Praying for you and your family a blessed New Yesr.

  3. Happy New Year my friend. Blessings to you for all those things you wish for and more 🙂

  4. valeriebollinger Says:

    Audrey, this is beautifully written, and expresses my sentiments for the new year. Thank you for sharing your gift of writing. I am grateful to know you.

  5. When I took my courses in communications the very first concept was in order to be a good communicator you must have a sender, a receiver, and get feedback! In this day and age there is not much of that that fits the communication basic model. Hopefully we all can do better in the next decade of being good communicators.
    Best wishes Audrey, with continued blogs that bring your world in Minnesota to the entire world.

  6. Jenny Woldum Says:

    This is truly lovely, Audrey…and a gentle reminder of what is important in our lives, and the need for peace and love and understanding and tolerance. Thank you…and Blessings in your New Year!

    • Thank you, Jenny. We all need to pause sometimes and think on these things, to focus on the core of what matters most.

      A most joyous 2020 to you and your beautiful family, Jenny! You all have always held a special place in my heart.

  7. Susan Ready Says:

    Your reflective comments are spot on. Wishing you the best as we enter a new decade full of hope, a promise of adventure and perhaps some peaceful moments.
    Happy New Year

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