Thursday, January 2, 2014

Twenty Fourteen

I usually make New Year's resolutions. I love the idea of a new year, a fresh start, a chance to reflect on the past and dream about what the future holds. But, like most people, I rarely ever keep my resolutions for more than a week or two.  So last year I set goals for myself instead: things that I wanted to accomplish in 2013. And ya know what? It worked. Calling them goals, rather than resolutions, seems to have helped me get 'er done (for the most part)! 
Let's revisit:
1. Continue to blog at least 2x a week. Although I didn't always get to post two times a week, I kept up with blogging. I remember hitting a rut in early spring because I was pregnant and not sharing it yet. It's so hard to write about your life when you're keeping a huge secret! Once the cat was out of the bag blogging was back in full force.

2. Continue to hone my photography skills. Definitely did this, but could have done even more! See, I took a photography class a while ago and the teacher (who was awesome) advocated for shooting in aperture priority mode. It worked for me in a bunch of different situations (mostly when I was outside with tons of light) so I just left my camera like that and got comfy. Then over the summer, I noticed most of my images were coming out blurry. After blaming my 50mm lens, the camera and my own eyes, I finally realized I needed to get back to basics and shoot in full on manual. Once I did that, I was golden. Sure I still get blurry shots and not so great ones, but the focus issues were much much less frequent. 

Also, after talking to some awesome friends, I realized that having focus issues with the 50mm lens is very common. So, for Christmas I asked for a 35mm (f1.8) lens and my husband got it for me. I've only used it a handful of times so far, but I love love love it! I can't wait to practice with it more.

3. Patience. This is something I'm always working on. But I can honestly say that in 2013 I made some great strides. And I owe a lot of that to my little Nicholas. More on this soon.

4. Make progress on my novel.  This was the only goal I didn't make any progress on at all. But, I'm not counting it as a total loss because I did do a lot of writing this year. This blog helped me realize that writing is one of my true passions and that I should focus on it more (hence the goal for 2013). In that vein, I started writing for Daily Mom this year and it has been an awesome experience so far. I know that everything happens for a reason, and writing for Daily Mom is where I'm meant to be right now.

5. Get this house organized! Once again, thank you Nicholas for helping with this one! We got the office in order which was one specific area we wanted to focus on. And then we moved on to the other bedroom, which is now Nicholas's room. We still need to work on the basement, though.

6. Continue to make my family my priority. I can definitely say I did this one in spades! There isn't anything more important to me than my family. Being a mom is a crazy ride and I love every minute of it. We made amazing memories with Gia and then in October we welcomed a new little person into our lives. I can't wait to see who he'll become and make memories with him!

Now onto this year's goals.

1. Get back to my pre-baby weight.  I gained about 29 lbs with Nicholas and I have 8 lbs to go. I didn't worry about my weight at all through the holiday season and I'm glad I didn't. I love cookies and candy and all the yummy goodness that comes with the holidays. Now though, it's game time. We are going to Jamaica in a month and I want to look ok. So I joined Weight Watchers and I'm hopeful. I have had success with it in the past and I'm ready to get back to feeling good about my body.

2. Continue writing. I'm purposely being general here because I want to see where the universe takes me in regards to my writing. My novel, Daily Mom, this's all fair game. So, I'll continue to write, and look for even more opportunities!

3. Organize the basement. This is the last area of the house that really needs help and I want to tackle it this year!

This year I'm also picking a word. I first heard about the one-word resolution challenge on Laura Lippman's Facebook page (she's an author that I love. If you haven't ready any of her books, get on that. Start with "What the Dead Know". Thank me later.) The idea is that you choose just one word to describe & define what your main resolution is for the year. I thought a lot about my work. I thought about "non-judgmental" or "patience" again, or just something simple like "love".

But...I decided on

I get stressed more often than I'd like to admit. Most of the time it's about little things. And just the other day I read something that basically said if you're worrying about something, you're not living in the present. (I wish I could find the exact quote...) That really struck a cord with me. I spend a lot more time that I'd like to stressing about things that I shouldn't worry about. So this year I'm going to work on letting it go. So, relax. That's my word.

What's yours?

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