Tuesday, January 7, 2014

easing into the new year

Well, it's a new year. 2013 flew by, if you ask me. I'm eager for what this year will bring. Even though January is often the dreariest month of the year for me, this is probably the first time I've ever been so excited to have this month as a new beginning. I love new, fresh beginnings, don't you? These seasonal transitions or benchmarks like the end of the school year-- easing into summer. Fall always feels this way. And obviously, the month of January. I often will list possible goals, possibilities, projects, and experiences I want to create for the new season-- or year-- ahead. I like to think this way, instead of using the term "resolutions". Simple strivings instead of overwhelming pressures which starts out all gung-ho and then slowly drizzles into disappointment, let down, and feelings of failure.

I've been on a freshen up, clean up, "let's get organized" kick this week. Since I was in a very time pressured student mode last year, getting my business rolling in October, working on formatting and "publishing" my photo and poem book (I called it "Around the Year"; a gift of my heart to my loved ones at Christmas. I can't tell you the happiness I felt in seeing all my work compiled in a real life, beautiful book.) then ending the year with the hubbub of the holidays, now I feel like I can have the space, the breathing room, the time, and the motivation (I can't believe how truly motivated I feel right now) for many things that have been put on the back burner. Things-- more like chores--which have felt like big, heavy weights hanging over me.

So I've been wiping and scraping down gunk from drawers and closets and the Lazy Susan. Decluttering. Purging. Hauling off bags to the garbage bin and bags to donate to the second hand store. Purchasing a new simple planner for the year. Printing off new calendars to put on the fridge. Rethinking and putting things in new, more efficient places. Getting ideas off of Pinterest. (of course.) Cutting inspirational pictures out of some old magazines my mother passed on to me and creating a magnetic vision board for my sewing and creating room. (These were first cut out and contained in a "manifestation box" labeled whatever is contained in this box IS! Now, I want these pictures to become more of a visible, daily reminder.) Planning menus. Staying up late or waking up at five to read my books. Staying up late getting caught up on Downton Abbey. (Of course.) 

Oh, and I have to tell you about my favorite breakfast of late. Wow, I could eat this every day. (You could too if you are a oatmeal and chocolate fan like me.) 

Almond butter chocolate overnight oats from mywholefoodlife.com. (check it out. good stuff, here.)

Here's the idea: A handful of oats. A spoonful of almond or peanut butter. A spoonful of cocoa powder or cacao powder if you're getting all fancy. A sprinkle of chia and ground flax seed. Chopped up dates and bananas. A little sweetening like maple syrup or a few drops of liquid stevia. Almond milk drizzled over top.

Really, so good. I have yet to make the overnight version. Immediate make and eat is the way I've done since Saturday morning. (It's becoming an every day affair.)  I can easily last on a bowl of this yummy goodness until lunchtime.

And  a very Happy New Year to you, too.


  1. I have been doing the very same thing! Love to clean-up and clean-out! Thank you for the website link...I am a lover of oats as well.

  2. Oh, can I just say that I was disappointed with the new episode of Downton Abbey? I thought it was rather dull and predictable. Oh well. My only intention this year is to sew more, and I'm doing a fine job so far!

  3. I do love the opening of a new season, a fresh start. Organizing the home is always a part of January. I bet 2013 went by fast for you!