Welcome, 2014!

I’ve mentioned that this time of year is extraordinarily special for us- in addition to the usual series of holidays to celebrate, we have our wedding anniversary and both birthdays thrown in! All of our revelries are smooshed together, from late October until January 3. Despite the mayhem it inevitably brings, I savor this time of year. For me, each new year represents hope and promise, a blank page to fill with adventures and challenges and laughter and tears. Another year of this life, which is a short and precious gift. How will I live it?

Last year, I chose to forego traditional resolutions, which so often are just items on a list, something that makes us cringe as months pass without crossing things off successfully. Instead, my goal was to work toward being the best version of myself that I could be. Did I succeed? Sometimes. I missed the mark sometimes, too, but tried to accept those failures with grace and grow from them. As I ponder this, I realize that my 2013 goal was not one that could ever be checked off as “complete”– it’s an ever-evolving challenge to continue to grow as a person and contribute things of value to the world.

And so, as 2014 creeps up behind me, my intentions remain the same: be my best ME. Here’s how I hope to do it:

Keep learning. My brain has so much more room in it, and I want to fill it up!

Keep exploring. Every time I visit somewhere new, I gain a broader understanding of our world (and always have fun!).

Keep moving. I spent much of 2013 on the hiking trails near home. Constant physical activity has been great for my body and mind.

Keep progressing. What a shame to stay in the same place, just because it’s comfortable! I’ll be intentionally stepping out of my own (safe) little bubble often.

Keep caring. I’d like 2014 to be the year I give regularly of myself to others, whether it be volunteering, providing support, or just listening to a friend in need.

Keep trying. When I’m feeling defeated, I’ll whisper to myself: “Stay positive. Don’t give up…”

Keep perspective. Big picture! I’d like to learn to give myself a break- don’t sweat the small stuff.

Keep an attitude of gratitude. Above all, this way of life has helped me keep my chin up through lost friendships, our baby-making journey, professional struggles, and general insecurity this year. No matter what it throws my way, life is good– and I’m grateful.

I’ll be ringing in the new year at a place dear to my heart with John and Cholula. I can think of no better way to thank 2013 for its blessings and embrace whatever lies ahead, together.

Welcome, 2014. Let’s do this.

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