Tuesday, January 3, 2012

New Year Reflections

Are you tired of hearing about New Year's stuff yet?? I thought I'd take today's post and share with you some reflections of 2011. I am a firm believer in learning from things I've done, both successfully and with epic failure and everything in between, learning from experiences, learning from others and mindfully trying to make my and my family's life better.

2011 was a year of firsts. Many of these were because my youngest was old enough to "do" things so we got to "do" family things. Here's my list of firsts:

1st family vacation/plane trip (Hello Wisconsin!)
1st family waterpark visit
1st family camping trip
1st time staying in forest service cabin w/ family
1st time I haven't spent part of the year pregnant (since 2006!)
1st time leaving husband and children for a mom-only vacation (Hello St. Louis/Chicago!)
1st full year of being self-employed
1st boudoir photo shoot (ooh la la!)
1st time playing Bunco
1st burlesque class
1st show with my Carlia Creations business
1st time using cloth diapers
1st time choosing to wean my child
1st time back in size 7/8 (since 2005!)
1st camper I've ever owned (thanks Baxley's!)
1st time seeing friends in 4 years, 8 years or even 12 years
1st time not seeing my brother and his family all year :(
1st time hiring an attorney
1st time couponing for real
1st time making money b/c of coupons (yippee!)
1st time using fondant for cake decorating (love it!)
1st time being hired to bake/decorate cakes
1st time sending my child to (pre)school

We were blessed with a year of health and happiness. My husband had a good year with his business and was fortunate to find work in the off season. I'm so proud of him for building the curbing business and doing the right thing when it came to helping homeowners who had problems from the previous owners' errors. I love that he can barter his trade work with folks who also have their own businesses. Although this may be the leanest year financially for us, we are rich with love and family. We don't live glamorously, but we have all we need. I am SO LUCKY to be able to spend the day with my kids and share our home with other children. We are surrounded by large supportive and loving families and wonderful friends with growing families of their own. Nikki has become such a family dog and lover of children, despite the pouting she did when we first brought our oldest home from the hospital.

I don't generally make New Year's resolutions as I try to be a changing and evolving being. I try to better myself throughout the year and things that may be important in January may not be as important in June. I have set some goals for myself and my family this year. Some may come easy, some will take work. I hope all of you have ideas for yourselves to make your lives better. I encourage you to look at last year and think of 2 things you did well that you'd like to continue doing and things you failed at that you want to learn from and do better. I know I ask my readers to do things from time to time, but I want everyone to live up to their fullest potential. It's in all of us! Happy New Year to all! Cheers to a GREAT 2012!!

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