Happy New Year friends! 2015 was quite a ride, but I’m happily sailing into 2016. I don’t know about you, but I love any excuse to start fresh. January is such a perfect time to tune up intentions and goals for the year. We’re a week into it by now and I’m inspired for what’s to come. I love that feeling. The snowy image below was taken back in November on Joe’s birthday, the weather has delivered a strange wintery mix this season, but this is the general feeling of January in Chicago.
While I don’t necessarily make official “resolutions,” I definitely like to freshen up my habits and reassess goals. There are a few general things that I always seem to do/focus on at the turn of the year. Here’s a general run down of some of the action.
- No Alcohol – We always take a break from drinking alcohol for at a least one month, often longer. This is great for so many reasons; we save a lot of money, we are more productive in the evening, our sleep improves, we eliminate basically all of our useless extra calories (I’m not a calorie counter!), and if or when we decide to partake again, we take it slow. It’s a nice reset and detox in general.
- Physical fitness – As winter sets in and days get darker, we tend to eat more heavy foods and inevitably physical activity lulls. Once the holidays pass, it’s time to start moving more every day and get out of the slump. This must be the #1 resolution for most, and for good reason. If you are feeling physically out of whack, everything else is going to suffer from it too. Anytime is a great time to get back to working out! Just over one week in and I haven’t missed a day…. let’s see how long I can keep it up ;) I don’t expect I’ll be able to workout 365 days this year, but 3-5 times a week would be awesome.
- Declutter – I’m pretty much always decluttering and getting rid of things in our house, but especially in December things seem to fall off track. By the time January rolls around it’s so nice to refresh our living space. We usually start by eliminating the most obvious unnecessary items first and do a general deep clean up along with it. We have already donated several boxes of books and other random items this year. Of course there’s always so much more to tackle, but once you get the wheels turning, it’s so much easier to keep on moving. It’s especially therapeutic this time of year.
- Take care of business – I love to take time to prioritize projects and get to work on making them happen. First I like to focus on my studio space and set my intentions for existing projects. Then make decisions to release stagnant or uninspired projects from my to do list so there is more room for the important things. As a project oriented person, working to bring an idea to life feels incredibly rewarding to me, no matter how big or small the task may be, it just feels good carry out the visualization and watch it take form. Off to a good start this year.
- Kindness – Perhaps this one should be listed first, kindness is a muscle that should always be flexing, inward and outward. It can be a little too easy to be self critical, I often catch myself being too hard on myself. And what’s that going to achieve? Nothing more than some extra stress. So I’m working on improving my positive self talk. With so many unknowns in life, it can be tough to trust that we’re heading in the right direction at times. I want to work on naturally owning my journey and being proud of who/what I am right now. It’s so important to remember to be kind and gentle to yourself along the way.
Nothing too ground breaking here, it’s just a nice reminder to take note of yourself and pay attention to what’s going on. Always a good thing! I don’t feel there’s a need to feel pressured into making new years resolutions (& sticking to them!), just think about what you need to do for yourself and then make some magic in the best way you can. Speaking of magic, I’ve never seen moss like this in December or January, but this is how our patio is looking this winter!
So far I’d say 2016 is off to a great start. I am totally inspired and knee deep on making things happen. That feeling when you should be sleeping, but secretly you wish you were still working on your current project….
I’ve been working on a few new jewelry designs and making more necklaces to add to the existing lines. But my biggest focus has been on improving my jewelry photos, and photos in general. I have created a new tabletop lighting studio set up in my living room that is a huge help. Game changer. I’m so excited to give the Etsy shop a full on makeover! Coming so so so soon!
So I’ve had this blog/site for quite a while, but I’m still working on shaping it to be what I imagine. I know it’ll always be a work in progress and that’s fine, I want to keep on filling it with up with variety of ideas, interests, and images. I have been working behind the scenes on a few things that I will be sharing as soon as possible. My new photo set up is going to help tremendously with this. I have been struggling with lighting all winter, most of the hours I have for working on blog stuff is at night (darkness starts at 4pm during Chicago winter!), so capturing images for posts is more challenging without enough daylight or at least bright light- which we don’t really have in our home. Another major issue solved with the new set up! Yes!
So much more to share- stay tuned my friends!
Thanks for stopping by and reading through some of my adventures here on Meanwhile B, I hope your new year is off to a delightful start. My wish for you is that you find joy in the present moment and spend time doing what you love.
Here’s another snap of life from this past month, the lone purple flower just living it up, even if it may not be the exact right time of year for it. Happy 2016 everybody!