At the beginning of this year, I decided to have a theme instead of creating New Year’s Resolutions. I called it my #yearofbeautiful. This is my summation post of that year, in blogs. As children, work, and life have become busier, I let this blog slip and I didn’t post frequently. However, I feel like the posts I did publish were quality. For me. Whether anyone else found something beautiful in them, I don’t know. If you did, feel free to comment and tell me!
I organized my #yearofbeautiful into three areas: feeling competent, living authentically, and connecting with others.
Here are the highlights of posts and quotes and things I’ve learned this last year.
- Daily Habit Tracker
I spent the month of September bullet journaling. It’s a trend, yo. It was fun. I had pretty pages. I took it with me to a seminar on sex and stress. My notes look cool. I also used it to create a one-page habit tracker for the month. What did I learn? I learned what things I never did once. One of those things? Go to bed by 11:00. … Set reasonable goals, people.
“Maybe by the end, it will be a gradient going from blank to lots and lots of turquoise. Bring on the turquoise!”
- Smothered mother
I started out by saying I was going to learn more about what it means to be authentic. Based on the number of posts, this was the area I liked learning about the most.
“Motherhood is beautiful, but there’s more to me than raising two small kids.”
- The transcendent mom
What makes work meaningful? This post grew out of an article by from MIT and I applied it to work as a parent, instead of an office job. I think it worked. It’s a post I could revisit often and remind myself of the meaningful mom job I do.
“I’m The Mom. I do things. I do transcendent things. I rock.”
- 3 ways to live authentically
Learning to feel accomplished and appreciated as a mom is a struggle. There’s not a regularly-scheduled performance review with my supervisor. This post shared three things I’ve learned that help me to feel like I matter as a mom in the midst of raising little kids: doing something for me, creating the world for my kids, and modeling my life after the life of the Savior. It’s good wisdom from a therapist, my husband, and a friend.
“…make a good list of things to do where your kids can see you alive. My list includes writing, doodling, and playing the piano.”
After posting this, Grandma DeeDee wanted me to know that she learned her grit from her mother. I wrote about the gritty, Carlquist culture. I should have focused more so on the gritty, Rich culture. Sarah Ethel Rich taught my centenarian grandmother her grit. She made my baby blanket. I keep it as a treasure.
“Understanding both grit and authenticity feels like understanding the entirety of an iceberg to me.”
- Family Narrative
This post is a subject I’ve talked about often with friends; I even shared some of my personal takeaways in the setting of my ward Relief Society class, as a participant. Also, it includes a gif of my son. You can’t go wrong with an animated gif. Didn’t we learn that with Geocities sites in the 90s? I thought so! If you haven’t read any of my thoughts from this year, read this one! Do you know your family narrative? Do you have kids and if so, do they know theirs? Teach them. Learn yours. Be strong because of it.
“If you want to create strong, lasting family relationships, develop a strong, lasting family narrative.”
- “How do you spend most of your time?”
I am often looking for ways to be better at socializing because it’s not an easy thing for me, although I thrive off of the right social situations (book club, soccer team, game night, etc). This post shared this question, which is a better way to get to know somebody than asking, “So what do you do?”
“I am awkward. It’s not a feeling. It’s a state. I am in the state of awkward.”
Finally, I’ll finish by quoting my husband who wrote this as a comment on my post at the beginning of this year.
“Who invented the comma splice rule anyway? Certainly not James Joyce, that man did whatever he felt like and got applauded for it; he was like the Florence Foster Jenkins of writing.”
And with that, my #yearofbeautiful is coming to a close.