Happy New Year, everyone! I hope you welcomed 2020 in the perfect way for you whether that was a night out on the town or cozied up at home. We opted to stay in this NYE and have a quiet and cozy little night at home. We put the boys to bed, snuggled up with some Prosecco, and listened to some good music while the year changed from 2019 to 2020. It was perfect for us and exactly how I wanted to start out this new year and decade! It brought me pure joy...which is my word of the year for 2020!
I spent a lot of 2019 angry, sad, and tired. I finished out the year on a high note of being very happy and refreshed from giving birth to Finn, but if I'm being totally honest, most of the year was not like that. So this year, I want to continue down the path I started at the end of 2019 and focus on the joy of life.
First off, I want to bring joy to those around me. Whether it be a stranger that I smile at to brighten their day a little more, to my closest friends and honing in on their love languages. One of my personal strengths is reading people and understanding them, but doing so takes time. I want to take that time to really focus on others to bring more joy in to their lives. Most importantly, Caleb, Kai, and Finn. They bring me more joy than I could have ever imagined so I want to ensure I am doing the same for them each and every day.
I also want to bring myself more joy. I know from personal experience you can't just be happy at the snap of your fingers. Trust me, I tried that a lot in the last 2 years...it doesn't work, at least not for me. It takes time and sometimes it takes help. I struggled with postpartum depression and anxiety for awhile after giving birth to Kai, so I have promised to be honest with myself that if I start to feel that way again, I will seek help sooner rather than later. It's never something you want to admit...that something's wrong, but it's so important for not only yourself but for your family, too. At the end of the day, if I take care of myself mentally, physically, and spiritually, I will feel joy. I don't need to do big, grand, fancy things for myself, I just have to take care of myself and allow myself to be who I am. What I've learned is when you finally love yourself for who you are, that's when you will finally be happy with your life. I want to make sure I am always in a place to feel that way and truly feel the joy in life. So I'll be focusing on doing whatever it is I need to do to bring myself all the joy in the world!
I hope you start this year out focusing on whatever it is you need to do to feel joy and better yourself, as well! Share with me in the comments some of your resolutions, mantras, and words of 2020!
Happy Monday, dear friends! I can't believe 2019 is almost over. Is it just me or did this year fly by!? This year has been a crazy one for the books years for us. We started out the year with a one year old and now we're saying goodbye to it with a toddler and a newborn! At times it's seems like a lot but having Finn in our lives has also given me so much drive and focus. He is exactly the REFRESH I needed this year. He has given us so much love and joy already and I'm so grateful I was able to spend this year focusing on my time with Kai and preparing for Finn to join us. I've been able to let go of so much negativity that has been weighing me down and have been able to move on from the complicated emotions that 2018 brought. I'm truly looking forward to what 2020 is going to bring for our little family, but I'm so grateful for 2019 and the growth that happened during this year. I started my dream job this year, had such a powerful birth experience, and gained a lot of confidence in myself as a mother and woman. Let's take a walk down memory lane of this refreshing year!
I always look forward to a new year and a fresh start but I will be a little nostalgic for 2019 though. It's time to say goodbye though, so cheers 2019, it's been refreshing!
Remember way back in January when we had all these words, goals, and resolutions for 2019? Yeah, how are we doing with those? I'll speak up and go first, NOT SO GOOD... To be completely honest, I forgot what my word of 2019 was. I picked refresh for a reason and it was because 2018 was a very difficult year emotionally. I needed a refresh in so many ways yet I've somehow sunk in to a whole deeper than I am tall. Here's what's been going on and how I finally came to realize all of it.
I am truly overwhelmed right now. I'm 34 weeks pregnant and don't feel prepared at all to have this baby. Sure the nursery is put together, the clothes are washed and folded, and I have a list of what I need to pack in my to go bag. But there's some other things that I just can't seem to let go of like putting up bump dates on this blog and booking a maternity shoot. Especially the maternity shoot. You may be asking why I'm so obsessed with this. Well to be frank, I've done a shitty job of appreciating this pregnancy and documenting it. Once I go in to labor, it's over. There may be no photos to look back on to remember this time. Sure I can backdate some blog posts for bump dates, and I do plan on doing that but still, it's not the same as going along with the journey. I know I need to give myself a break but at the same time, I'm wasting time on unnecessary things that have brought a lot of negativity to my life. I'll spare you the details but just know that social media is such a life sucker. Anyways, just because this hasn't been the easiest pregnancy, doesn't mean I want to forget it. So there's that. Next, I feel so buried at work. I should be wrapping things up so I can hand things off for when I go on maternity leave, yet somehow every day I walk away with even more work on my plate. I'm in this struggle of wanting to do a good job and proving that even though I'm pregnant I can handle all of it...well I'm at a break point to where I almost can't anymore. Then there's this looming date coming at the end of the month that I am oh so dreading. The reason why 2018 was so hard. If you've forgotten or if you're new around here, October 25th of 2018 was the day my wonderful dad passed away. I've always promised to be honest here, so here it is, I am still so angry about it. I think I've overwhelmed myself with baby things and work things so that I don't have to focus on it but the reality is the day will still come. This event in my life robbed all of us of some wonderful things and I still feel like it's unfair. First and foremost for my dad. He had to spend the last months of his life in the worst way possible. He had to just look at his grandson from afar and never hold him. He couldn't eat anything for months. It breaks my heart how cruel that is. It robbed my mom of seeing Kai crawl around, going out and doing things with all of us, and most importantly coming home to her husband who she loved so dearly every day. It robbed Caleb, Kai, and I from having all last summer of adventures together and with Kai's grandparents like going to the zoo, road trips, the beach...even just family BBQs in the backyard. My dad never got to take Kai to a Cubs game. This was my dad's dream. To take his grandson to a baseball game. We had to spend our weekends sitting in a hospital pretending not to feel this hurt and anger. And you know what, it's still there. Maybe even more because now grandson number 2 is coming and my dad will never get to meet him on this Earth. The crushing realization of that is so devastating to me. I should have been working on letting go of this anger this year and focusing on positives. I should have let this anger out long ago but I've done the opposite and now I have to deal with it with a big ole baby bump, a mountain of work, and a lot of lack of sleep.
I realized this all within a matter of 24 hours. I went from just being so done with this pregnancy, to having anxiety about going in to labor from all the stress I'm harboring, to just coming to terms with I need to make some personal well being changes before I truly get to my darkest place. Then I remembered my word, "REFRESH." I'm not mad at myself for forgetting it, just honestly disappointed. When I think of this word, I feel so light and positive. It brings me a clear head, which is 100% what I need right now. I already purged some negativity that has been dragging me down tonight. I'm sitting here writing a blog post (crying, but still writing) because it brings me joy. Once I'm done rambling and I set this up to be posted, I plan on turning the lights off, no TV on, and hopefully getting a good night sleep. I've let go of the house needing to be cleaned and all the laundry to be folded. Honestly, Caleb is 100% capable of all those things and just because he might not do it exactly like I would doesn't mean I shouldn't just let it all go for the time being. Because I truly don't have the capacity right now to do every single daily chore that I use to do. I can barely bend down, I struggle to breath sometimes, and I'm just tired. But that's how it is when you're 34 weeks pregnant and I need to recognize that. This is the season of life we're in right now and there is so much good in it. I get to feel this beautiful baby inside me, see him grow, protect him, and have an excuse to just prop my feet up and have some things done for me. It's quite the blessing!
So it's time for me to refresh my thoughts, get some sleep, say no to the non-essential things, and truly take care of myself. I hope you all are doing the same and remember what you set out to do at the beginning of this year, too. We picked these words, resolutions and goals for a reason 10 months ago...let's keep it up and finish out 2019 strong.
Let's talk about self love, beautiful friends. There is so much that falls under these two small words and it is so important. I've truly fallen in to the movement of self love. Since becoming a mother, I've never loved myself more. I'm so grateful for my body, my motivation in life, and just who I am as a person in general. Because of how I finally feel about myself, it has led me to take much better care of myself lately. I know I've said it many times before but we are remarkable. Think of all the things we do now and imagine how much more we could do if we treated ourselves with genuine love.
Self love is deeper than a feeling though and it's more than the awesome phrase "treat yo self." I truly believe it's the actions we take to care for ourselves so we can continue those feelings of love for ourselves. While yes we deserve to treat ourselves often and I always believe in having something to look forward to, it's more important to do things on a daily basis to show yourself love. The best part about that though is that it's different for everyone. For me, it's waking up early, meditating, and reading a book while sipping my coffee. It's getting my work outs in during the week as a way to keep my body strong and get a mental break from work and Kai. (Trust me, Kai's wonderful, but I'm a better mother if I get a break from him a few nights a week.) It's doing my skin care routine every night. It's getting 8 hours of sleep at night. There is so much I try to do for myself on a daily basis to show myself love and I'm not going to lie, not every day is perfect. Far from perfect to be honest. I tend to get mixed up in that "treat yo self" trap of binging on candy and Game of Thrones instead of going to the gym and having a salad with dinner. While the first option is fun, it's actually not showing myself the true love it deserves.
Self Love Ways
These are just some of the ways I try to instill in my life for showing myself love. Like I said, it's so different for everyone but if you're looking for a place to start, pick out a few of these points and try to incorporate them in to your daily life. You deserve it! You are so beautiful, strong, and wonderful. Love yourself first and foremost and you'll be able to love the world better!
What are some ways you practice self love? I'd love to hear from you guys so we can keep adding to this list for everyone to try! Leave me a comment on this post or on the Tiny Tribe post about self love! Have a. beautiful Wednesday, friends!
Welcome to the first Tiny Talk of 2019! Woo sorry it's been awhile friends. I've honestly been kind of lost in this fraction of the blog. I have so many topics I want to discuss with all of you but there's something missing in the Instagram Live aspect of it and I've been trying to put my finger on it but just can't. I can't seem to find a good time to host them that works for everyone. I know plenty of you watch it later because I get so many awesome messages from you! Do I start a podcast? Do I try Facebook Live instead? I'm not entirely sure where to go with the live chat part of our Tiny Talks, so for now, I will just be writing up some posts and sharing them with you here + putting up a post in The Tiny Tribe to go along with the topic. We can work on adding the chat back in later, but I need you all to send me your ideas!
Alright so let's talk about Marie Kondo today. I absolutely adore her. I think she is so fantastic and I have been straight up Konmari-ing my house for the last 3 weeks. It feels amazing. However, I do have some reservations about all of it and I know some of you do, too. Just the other day I had my best friend say to me..."but I like my stuff" and my cousin sent me an amazing article about her philosophy not working the best for books, and I couldn't agree more with them. I think it's all about balance. So I wanted to weigh in on some pros and cons of Konmari here and see if you all can answer my dilemmas or if you think they are completely warranted...
PRO: You feel refreshed, lighter, happier
I certainly feel refreshed and lighter with less crap cluttering our home. I actually started clearing out our home before the new year because I had the last week of 2018 off of work. Then Tidying Up was released on Netflix on Jan 2nd! It was the perfect timing and gave me the motivation to keep going and taught me how to properly store things. It definitely works and I walk around our home now and smile at how organized it is and truly feel happy with the work Caleb and I have done.
CON: What about the middle ground?
I know I'm probably just making it up in my head but it feels like there's only two options with Konmari...get rid of if it doesn't spark joy or keep it if it does spark joy. My heart pulls a little at this because there are some things that "spark joy" and they aren't technically sentimental making it a situation like where do I keep these things and when am I going to use it but I'm not ready to let go yet kind of thing. Woo...know what I mean? Then I feel guilty! But why? That's dumb...like my best friend says...I like my stuff!
PRO: Organization makes me giddy
When things are properly organized in our home I actually feel giddy. I look at our closets and my heart flutters, ha! I've always been that way but our home has definitely lost a lot of it's organization since having a baby. I've really learned to let go of living in a way that everything needs to be in it's proper place but at the same time, if you let things stray too far from it's proper place it just gets out of hand. Then it takes forever to tidy back up. So I really like Marie's method of just putting everything back where it's supposed to be in bins, baskets, trays, etc, so that it stays easy.
CON: Will it stay this nice forever?
Ok so I wouldn't exactly call this a con but more of a question that can lead to. con depending on the answer. Will our closets and drawers and cabinets stay this nice forever? I have a hard time believing they will and then what? We have to go buy a whole new organization system? How many times do I need to Konmari our home in a year? No joke, it took me 45 minutes to fold and put laundry away the other day with her folding method. All I could think of is how that is all I am ever going to be doing during nap time. Today's load of laundry I think took me 20 min? So a little better but I feel like I was folding faster and maybe a little more sloppy? Which in turn if I keep doing it faster, will the folding not look as nice or will I just get better at it? I'm probably just overthinking it but with how much time and energy we've put in to this process I want our home to stay all beautifully organized! Am I alone in this thought cycle!?
PRO: Money + Donations
With the amount of stuff we're getting rid of we're going to have a pretty great garage sale this summer and hopefully make some good cash! I'm planning on selling a lot of my clothes on Poshmark, too, and all this money will be helping us pay off debt, woohoo! Anything we don't sell we will of course be donating, which always makes us feel great at the end of the day.
CON: But I like my stuff...especially my books!
So my cousin sent me this article from The Guardian and it dives in to how Marie's method about sparking joy with books doesn't make sense and I kind of have to agree. I'm kind of the middle zone where I think some people might be taking the "sparks joy" thing too literally but anyways, with books, I believe a home library is essential. I read every day. I read to Kai every day. We read with Kai every day. Books are very important to us. Some of them I've had for years and haven't read yet. Some I've read 10 times. To me though, none of that matters. The books I've read 10 times spark joy but so do the ones I haven't read yet. Heck, even the books I don't like or I'm not interested in still matter to me because what if they spark joy for someone else in my family? What if Kai eventually wants to read one of them? The books are staying...for us at least.
I've had a lot of moments of smiles and tears with this process. I've come across a lot of important things to me that I haven't seen in awhile that make my heart happy. I always save cards that people give me. No matter what it's for, I save it. Well I did decide to finally throw some away but there were some that really sparked joy that I couldn't toss in the trash. Like every card that had my dad's handwriting in it. Who would have thought I would never get another birthday card with that handwriting in it anymore? Old photos. Man I love looking at baby Caleb ha! We finally took apart the photo collages I made for my dad's memorial service, too. I honestly couldn't do it, so Caleb did it. He asked me to help in the end and it was honestly a gut wrenching experience. So I want you to know that you're not alone if you're struggling with going through your life because there were definitely moments that I wanted to just give up and not face it at all. Take breaks but also be so grateful for all the love, wisdom, and memories your home has. And definitely remember to say thank you!
Leave me a comment with how you've chosen to tidy up (or not!) these last few weeks. And PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE leave me a comment letting me know how you'd like me to proceed with our chat portion of Tiny Talks!
I’m Diana; curator & author of Tiny Dapper Fox. Here you’ll find posts on motherhood, home life, travel, & fashion/beauty as well as City Guides for places all around the world. Make yourself cozy and let’s be friends!
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