2017

2017


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You know, I was never one for resolutions. I remember always talking about things that would be beneficial in the new year, but hardly implemented them. Why should you wait for a date? For me, it’s the fact that I am addicted to fresh starts. That’s the reason I make so many new Facebook profiles and why I always attempt to “start fresh” on relationships or posts I make.

2016 was full of wonderful memories as any year would, but also a lot of anxiety and worries. It is all about balancing the scales though, am I right? Let’s reflect, shall we?

The most important and substantial occurrence this year was the birth of my first-born child. She has been the light of my life and has provided me with so much joy since day one. You can already tell that she’s going to be a grand adventurer like her mama. Just today, she ventured off into a dark, small space to explore. She ended up panicking and getting stuck between the couch and the recliner but that’s beside the point. She loves meeting new people and she loves going to new places. Who said you can’t travel or explore the kids without kids? I am too busy breaking that mold to care about unnecessary opinions. Anyway, I have enjoyed getting to know her and becoming her mother more and more every day. I love watching her master new skills and going overboard for all her firsts. Her first Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and many other occasions have brought me such joy. I love dressing her up, bringing her around family and friends, and simply watching the joy of my child radiate among us.

One of the most exciting firsts I’ve shared with her was taking her to Disney World in August. For a 6-month old, she was ecstatic. She met so many people and she kept a gummy smile on her face the entire duration. She acquainted herself with people behind us in lines and she kept calm during all the multi-hour waits. She managed to stay happy and continue her normal napping and nursing schedule throughout the entire 12 hours in 90-degree Florida heat. I have a post that explores our magical day, if you want to read about it. Her meeting Snow White and the dwarves will forever hold a special place in my heart. It was as if the whole world stopped for my baby girl in that moment.

Now onto my favorite pastime: travel. We ventured off on two big road trips this year. There are posts about both of them as well. Our first trip was in July. We went to Savannah, Georgia and Asheville, North Carolina. We talked the quirky streets of Asheville and marveled over mountain views. We indulged in quite possibly the best food we’ve ever had at a Himalayan restaurant. In Savannah, we took a long stroll through the parks lined with oaks dripping with moss (and our sweat). We fell in love with the quaint and charming nature of buildings, people, and shops.

Our second trip in October was to New Orleans, Louisiana, Shirley Arkansas, and Memphis, Tennessee. In NOLA, we had beignets and covered our smiling faces with sugary powder. Our daughter stuffed her face with some savory jambalaya while dining at a breezy outdoors jazz venue. The men playing their brass instruments truly made the entire experience. In Arkansas, we spent a lot of time with family we hadn’t seen in decades. We drove through mountains bursting with oranges, reds, and yellows. Fall had made its beautiful grand entrance just in time for me. Lastly, in Memphis we walked through the halls of the most famous late Elvis Presley’s dwelling.

We also made smaller trips to St. Augustine, FL for my 24th birthday (yes, 24?!) and another to Delray Beach, FL for a Japanese floating lantern festival where we had okonomiyaki (yum!) and dango for the first time.

I also got to experience a new perspective all thanks to my soul sister M. She helped me grow into a true form of myself and to embrace my inner free spirit, modern-day hippie self. We went on late night adventures with just the moonlight to guide us, we stopped caring so much what other people think, and we even decided to go to a spur of the moment concert. Somehow we ended up covered in glitter, being offered booze before we even made it in, and ending up on all kinds of Snapchat stories at a Kesha concert. And let me tell you, we have both had an admiration for the glitter queen for as long as I think we’ve met.

I am thankful for another year of friendships, love, and being there for people.

My husband and I will be married 7 years by the end of next year (as this week was our 6th wedding anniversary). We have been on nearly every adventure imaginable, have crossed many state lines, and have encountered the biggest adventure yet: raising our daughter. I laugh with him until our bellies hurt and we eat Taco Bell like we’re putting someone’s kids through college. He’s still my best friend.

My best friend and I are going on our 11th year as best friends. What a time it has been for both of us. I’ve watched her blossom into a happy person in a relationship with a wonderful man. They actually got engaged this year, too. She watched me become a mother and has been there for my family since.

Then there’s simply a blessing in spending another year with my mom, grandma, brothers and sister, my dad, my niece and nephews, and simply everyone who has made 2016 a memorable year.

These are the same people who have pushed me and made me believe in myself when it comes to my writing. I started my career in writing and have been freelancing for a few months. Although I’m taking a small break right now, minus one client, I am very thankful I’ve been able to do what I love and actually be decent enough to make money from it. Not to mention the feedback and returning clients. It makes me feel good to know someone enjoys my words that much to want more. I’ve always had an issue with self appreciation and could not tell you how many times I’ve resorted to self doubt. Even now I still do despite receiving many (currently unanswered) invitations to interview from clients needing proofreading and infotexts for their companies. I’m just glad I made that leap and I owe thanks to another fellow blogger who inspired me to branch out. Thanks, B. Good luck on your newest endeavors as well. (Follow parenthoodrant.com)

I’ve also nannied for many new and old children who are always the light of my day. There are hard times but I wouldn’t trade it for the many days of “I love you” and “you’re the best babysitter ever.” Days of pure joy and smiles on children’s faces are why you do it.

With 2017 only nine measly hours away, I would like to go ahead and outline my goals for this year. I am determined to make this year my year. I have so much excitement building up for new opportunities in this coming year.

– Become a better you. Not just emotionally and mentally, but physically. This year I will get my eating habits and weight back to pre-pregnancy, and even better than that. I will cut out junk food, large portions, multi-meals, and tone the eating out way down to once a week or so. I plan on exercising and getting to a point of self love and loving my body. I also plan to have a savings fund readily available for when we attempt to go out. That way, when we feel like eating out, the money that would have been spent on burritos will officially be in a savings account.

– Embrace yourself and be a better free spirit. That’s self explanatory. I will stop worrying so much, breathe the OCD and anxiety out, and breathe the good vibes in.

– Less fake relationships. More friends. Weeding out those who don’t care and display it time and time again. More memories. Be more giving. Say yes more. I’ll strive to be a yes woman this year.

– Be an even better mother and wife. Excel with loved ones. I will spend more time with my daughter this year and cherish our play time better. I’ll play more, worry less. Because in the grand scheme of things, bills will always be there. Financial worries will prevail no matter what. But your children won’t be small forever. They grow really fast. Family won’t always be around, so cherish them. Just stop stressing. Cuddle your dogs harder, play with your kids more, call your parents more.

– Travel more. This year I’m making big plans for my adventurous side. God willing this will be the best year yet.

– And on that note, I will be reviving Flowers and Wanderlust to its former glory. I recently found my business cards in a drawer while on a mission to declutter for the sixth time this month. It made me think back to when it was really bursting with potential. I will make more of an effort with posting weekly at least. I look forward to taking on all of the things I love but with a stronger passion this year, and with a little dark haired beauty calling me mommy. So one day she can see how important dreams are and how pursuing your dreams is the best thing you can do for yourself, besides love and experiencing new things every day.

Honestly I had many more before I actually sat down and gathered my thoughts. Apparently I forgot. This is a good start though I’d say. I simply want experience and memories, alongside improvement this year. I want to be the best role model I can be for my baby Z.

Happy new year! ❤

 


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