It’s mid-January now. Most people’s New Year resolutions are already starting to fizzle out. But ours are just starting to pick up steam… and it’s exciting!
Drew NEVER usually has New Years resolutions. He hates New Years as a holiday (says it’s stressful. Grinch.) and he says resolutions are a waste of time. But this year was different for some reason, and he is very serious about eating better. YAY! I am completely on board, so we decided that we are just going to do our best to eat clean as much as possible. Clean eating isn’t a diet! It’s not about eating more or less of anything, limiting yourself, or losing weight. It’s just about trying to be mindful of where food comes from, eating a variety and picking things that have been minimally processed. Right now the fridge is full of beautiful fruits & veggies, lean meats & cooked quinoa just waiting to be tossed into a salad or a stir fry.
Our other joint resolution is financial. Granted, it was totally MY resolution, and I forced it on Drew, but it’s something I can’t do alone! I decided that we need to be more calculated with our budgeting. It’s very hard to find extra money anywhere when you live in an expensive area and you have two children in daycare. But we keep waiting for this “one day” when we will have more money to put aside for emergencies, education, retirement, and even real enjoyment! We have so little of it right now, that when we do have an extra few bucks lying around, we’re more apt to get Chinese take out or go to a museum instead of putting it away. And while it is DEFINITELY important to find space to enjoy yourself (especially when you have kids!) I am choosing to look at the big picture. SO. We invested in Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University. And I. Am. GIDDY.
It’s a series of videos and CDs that explain methods, reasons, and best practices, as well as a money guide, workbook, a progress chart, and lots of other fun and helpful things. There are a total of 9 “classes” you take through the DVDs. Drew and I will be attending “class” in our family room every Tuesday night for 9 weeks. My greatest hope is that after all of this, Drew and I are equal partners in handling our finances and that we have a clearer vision for how to make our dreams come to fruition.
Now, in full transparency, there is a small downside. Apparently Dave Ramsey is rather “church-y” and tends to tie lessons into gospel. I was put off by that at first, but I have several friends (including a few atheists!) who have completed the course, said it’s absolutely life changing, and that the god stuff is easy to ignore. One of the lessons encourages tithing, for instance, and my friend who is totally against organized religion uses that additional money to support her community instead. It’s all about making things work for you. So I’m still super pumped. Drew, not as much, but at least he’s along for the ride.
My final resolution was to take care of me. To really invest in myself. I always said “oh, I will carve out some me time here and there” but then never did it out of guilt. Either my family needed me in the moment, or there was something I needed to do to support my family (like dishes, laundry, etc). I still fully intend to take care of my family as much as I always have, but I will be an even better, stronger, and more loving caretaker if I am happy and not running on fumes. Drew is actually the one that started me on this path. I have always wanted to do adventure sports (paragliding, rock climbing, caving, etc). Drew, on the other hand, has no desire to do things like that- so I’ve always put it off. I talk about it a lot, but I was starting to think it would never actually happen. And then for Christmas, Drew got me this:
Just because he doesn’t want to join me doesn’t mean he doesn’t want to support me! So this spring I will be soaring over Mount Zion with Colorado Paragliding!!! I am ecstatic. And I realized that the same philosophy can filter through the rest of my life. No one is going to tell me to enjoy myself, take care of myself, make myself happy… but they WILL support it. So I have signed up for a yoga class! It will meet every Saturday starting at the end of the month. I have also decided to invest time in reading again! I was once a voracious reader, but doing chores after the kids go to bed usually left me too tired to concentrate on anything. I’ve decided to give up some of my evening cleaning routines in favor of books. My first is the Alchemist. I’m not finished yet, but I am completely in love. This was the PERFECT book for me to start with, as I am currently seeking my own Personal Legend! And I have promised myself to take the chances, opportunities, breaks, and respites as they come to me. I’m feeling better already.
Shortly after making my last resolution, I read this post by Erin Brown (who I recently fell in love with):
I’ve always done my best to schedule my self-care time around my family’s schedule. I didn’t want my needs to “disrupt” my family. You know whose expectation that was? MINE. And honestly, sometimes I probably got a little grumpy when I didn’t wake up before everyone or squeeze it in the right place because, you know, “they wouldn’t let me.” Except that was all in my head. The super woman complex is mine. So is the letting go of it.
Lately I’ve been going to the gym after waking up and a comfy time. I’ve been jumping out for a quick run here and there. I just finished some restorative yoga while my family is chillin out in the house. Turns out my family is totally supportive and can survive without me. It might take some adjustment at first. You may have to be very specific about what you need (30 minutes to grab a run/20 minutes without interruption in the bathtub/whatever). But it is important you ask for it and important you give it to yourself.
You deserve your own time. Your family deserves a well cared for parent. And your kiddos learn so much about self-care from how you care for YOU. xo
RIGHT?!?!!? It showed me I was on the exact right path for me and making just the right decisions. Don’t get me wrong- life is already so very good. I am lucky and blessed beyond measure. But things are about to get even better.