January 1, 2014

Another Year

A fresh new year has arrived, and although I have made it standard practice to wait until February to really start anew (it always seems there's too many lingering obligations in January to jump right in), I am laying out my resolutions in advance. Looking back over the past few years here, I have failed miserably at fulfilling my goals. Oh well, other things were accomplished. I am hoping to have some more focus in 2014, and make some of this stuff happen!
  • Garden! garden, garden, garden... I have grand plans for a summer filled with homegrown veggies. Our August baby put a big dent in our garden plans last year (although James did do a great job keeping it up). I want to start seeds indoors and have a master plan by the end of February. In the spring I'd like to build a gate.
  • Meal plans. I love to cook but I am terrible at planning out our meals for the week and I spend a crazy amount of money on groceries. I don't expect to be too strict with meal plans, but I do need to have at least a rough strategy when I head to the store. I also hope to get back into posting more recipes here, and some organization in our kitchen will help me find the time to snap a few pictures of our food each week.
  • Sleep. Yeah, this is the problem that just never goes away. Now not only am I still an insomniac, but I have a baby who wakes up with a bright smile ready to start the day at 3AM. No joke. Not sure how to make this one happen, but it had to make the list.
  • Me time. I truly take almost no time for myself, and when I do have a moment I usually end up playing on my phone or taking a shower (the luxury!), so it ends up not feeling special. I'd like to try to take 90 minutes twice a week to do something deliberate for myself; yoga, knitting, reading a book... anything except screen time.
  • Us time. Realistically, we just aren't a couple that's going to have a regular date night at this stage in our lives. For better or worse, I'm not comfortable leaving a small baby with a sitter or friends, so aside from when we visit my mother and hit the town... at least one of us is home bound after 7PM. With that as a given for the time being, I'd still like to set aside at least one night a week where we have a real 'home date'. No chores, a few candles, maybe some lipstick, a fire, some real conversation. We do have nights like this, but not nearly enough!
  • Sun porch makeover. We have a little glassed in porch space that I want to do a mini renovation on this spring so that it can act as a play space in the warmer months. I am thinking plywood floors, chalk boards, a swing,  fun storage, and I had wanted a sand table but Little Smith wasted no time correcting me that he'd like a train table instead. Got it!
  • Style. Clothes, hair, and makeup (what's that?) are not a big area of interest for me. I'm not going to go nuts on this, but my family recently gave me a big photo album dating from the '70s to present, and I was so blown away my how pretty everyone looked as young mothers; great simple clothes, great hair. I still have a little less than ten pounds of baby weight hanging around and I'm starting to think that might just be me now, so I would like to make a few steps to feel better about my appearance. I think this is the year where I take at least one day a week to not put my hair in a bun or a ponytail. A little more effort in this area is something I really need.
  • This here blog. I have been struggling with keeping this space up since the start of my nausea filled pregnancy. Now that I am gaining some confidence with juggling the two babes, I want to get back into posting more frequently. It might not be 5 days a week, but at least 2 plus portraits (if I decide to do portraits in 2014, still not sure).

As usual, my list is ambitious, but I hope to actually tackle these things this time around. You'll notice that there really isn't anything that involves the kids, not that they aren't tremendously important, but I feel like that is the one area where we are actually good about being thoughtful and deliberate in appreciating our time, so more of that in 2014! 

This past year was very good to us, a new baby, a new job for James, preschool (and the first time being left with anyone that is not a family member) for Little Smith. I expect this year will be quieter, a time of steady growth and improvement for our little family. Thank you so much to all of you who check in with us, whether you offer occasional words of wisdom and encouragement or just read silently, we feel the support. 


  1. Dear Lily (was that your name ...?), still reading your blog, still enjoy it soooo much! While reading your todays post I thought: hold out! My daily life became so hard when my babygirl started to crawl ... I had never expected that. Just like your husband mine had to keep up our garden and rebuilding our little loft while I was struggling two kids! But now - luckily - we've got two nurserys and a beautiful garden! When Leni started to walk around in our garden I immediately planted some flowers which hopefully will bloom in spring! And in March I will grow veggies with both my kids! Can't wait for that! In February Peter will be in kindergarden, everyday, a big change in my life ... just the thought of it feels strange, not having my boy with me. so, keep going, hold out, every new day is a new experience, enjoy every moment because time goes by so fast. greetings from germany, TINE

    1. Such wise advice, thank you! I know you're right, I'm probably totally underestimating how much work it will be once the babe is mobile, newbie mistakes. I still really really want to make that garden happen, I guess we'll see how swamped I feel come spring :)

  2. I love the picture. Our bed looked like your picture this morning (except my kids aren't babies anymore :) ) Happy New Year!

  3. I think these are excellent goals, Lilly! Very similar to my own this year. I look back on when my boys were little babies like Ruby, and frankly I never really left them either. Breastfeeding and lack of sleep make everything a little more complicated. Just know that it does get easier. I am finally feeling like I am crawling out of a hole, ha ha! The "me time" has to be the hardest one for us, but I am getting there and it really does make a difference in my mental health!

    Happy New Year, and beautiful picture!

  4. I just found your blog this past week through instagram and as I am a stay at home mom with a just turned three year old and an 11 month old I relate to so much of what I have read so far!
    Great resolutions, I share your me time & us time ones. For some reason I find it impossibly hard to take any me time...my kids nap at the same time for about an hour every afternoon but 95% of the time the baby falls asleep on me and I'm so tired I just end up surfing on my phone like you say. I miss things like reading good books & crafting so much but lately it seems more trouble than its worth to gather materials etc when I'm constantly interrupted. I did just buy a series of yoga classes so determined to figure out a way to that a least once week while my husband has the kids.
    For our five year anniversary in September we made a pact to go out once a month EVERY month, we made it three months but then the holidays got in the way. Like you we have never left our boys with anyone but my mom & a lot of times it seems like more trouble than its worth to get everything situated beforehand but we do have so much fun once were out!
    And I highly recommend meal planning (dinners anyway) I do it once a week and its such a relief to know what to make each night, I don't know how I ever cooked without it. Don't think it helped with expenses at all, cooking three meals a day from scratch adds up but we think its worth it to eat real food.
    Good luck!

  5. I feel very identified with the entire list. A lot of strength and good luck

  6. This is a great list, and I think you are wise to focus on goals for yourself and James. We parents naturally devote most of our energies to taking care of the kids. We have to remember to focus some energy on ourselves!

    P.S. I think my extra weight around the middle might just be who I am now too. After all, my youngest is 9! ;)