Friday, 17 January 2014

New Year Resolutions.

Resolution is such an intimidating word when you think about it. Requiring resolve. So what does it say about my resolve if I've already broken one of these resolutions (totally not giving up which one although you can probably guess!)? I guess I'm a work in progress, like many if not most. At some point last year I read something along the lines of 'balance is just prioritized choices.' It really is. On the evenings I get a great workout...something somewhere isn't organized or put away the way I'd love it to be. When I go to bed with a clean house, chances are I'm frustrated that I didn't get to work on one of my 10 projects (at least) I have going on at the same time. And on the evenings I bake, forget it...everything else is on the backburner (but my house smells delicious). It's not a balancing act at all but really more like a Tug o war. I'm fine with that, with a little bit of everything, as long as my family is at the forefront. They have my days. I have a very clear-cut vision of how I want things to be for my family, how I want the girls' childhoods to play out--not so much exact events because hello! where's my crystal ball at?--but traditions, values, memories that I hope they'll carry with them forever. Make it count. But in the vein of trying to make a few changes, and with the neverending goal of being more patient, more kind, and more mindful: 

1) Exercise at least 4x a week. This can even be a quick 15 minute pilates youtube video for goshsakes. I'll count that even though I'm sure a lot of people wouldn't. Or it could be a run which I'd rather...but sometimes, even getting out for a run can be feel daunting.

2) Finally put all the pictures, videos, baby books in order. I'm putting this into the universe as one lump sum resolution but really it's about making slideshows, starting a yearly 'yearbook' tradition where I'll print out all the year's favorite photos, and finishing the almighty baby books. All of that, lumped together, has been one big albatross around my neck for the last six months and I really want to use the first half of this year to get it under control. And come up with some sort of system to not let it get this overwhelming again.

3) Make a sunflower house for the girls this summer, as outlined in this awesome book which I've only begun to scratch the surface of and devour.

4) Go camping two times. That'll already be double the amount we went last year. Steve's the apprehensive one--even though we've been with Mila, we were wanting Dani to be a little more mobile. I've already made reservations for early summer at a local spot to get our feet wet (literally! gonna do some canoeing finally) and then am hoping for somewhere elsewhere in Florida/Georgia. 

5) Read two parenting books that have been sitting on my dresser collecting dust. The Five Love Languages of Children and Siblings Without Rivalry. I'm not a huge parenting book person but I think I should give these two some effort and time. 

6) Go on ten dates with my husband this year. This year we'll have been married ten years. How'd that happen?! At any rate we owe it to each other to start spending more time 'dating.' It's all too easy to get caught up in the day to day stress and feeling overwhelmed and broke from house stuff--and suddenly you're turning on each other because dang these kids we created are amazing but they are also emotionally and physically so so much . 

7) Keep doing some things I already started last year but try harder at them, like planning activities for the girls in advance and reading to the girls at the table when I finish rather than jumping up to do dishes, clean up etc. I'm a huge, HUGE believer in open-ended play and I think Mila's imagination is juuuuuuuuuust fine (trust me). But it might be nice to do some low-key, no pressure planned activities to help nurture other interests. It's easier said than done: 20 minutes of carefully thought-out preparation only to hear "I'm not going to do it." "But try. Just try!" Super frustrating...which brings me back to the whole more patience, more kindness thing I prefaced all of these resolutions with in the first place. 

8) Really try to be more thoughtful with my friends and family. I have such thoughtful friends, really, they're the best. The kind of friends that bring over chess pie because, well, they know you love pie. Friends who see a magazine article about making felt crafts in a magazine and actually mail it to you. Like mail in a mailbox, not email! And Marmousch, well, she's the queen supreme of thoughtfulness and inspires me daily. I want to make more of an effort to do thoughtful gestures for all the amazing people in my life, things just because that say I'm thinking of you. 

So I'll leave it at that. There's other things I would like to do--I'd really like to finally knit a big blanket this winter (that's more a matter of being able to afford my spensy yarn) like I crave yearly; I want to travel more, enter some fun races, yada yada. And who knows, maybe this will be the year I finally do something with all those quilting squares! And (but?) of course there's renovations for all our house goals (another post). I have a feeling house stuff is a definite to happen. It's not just me doing it so already that's easier. These resolutions above, though, those are my babies. I have to see them through from start to finish, holding myself accountable. Said in my most confident voice, I've got this.

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