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    JANUARY: THE LEDGER

    JAN 1 // Ring in the New Year! Happy 2018!

    JAN 2 // Pick a word for the New Year. Read about mine here.

    JAN 3 // Set budget and savings goals for the new year.

    JAN 4 // Set 5 attainable life goals. Set 3 long term goals. Read this post on goal setting. Or scratch goal setting and set up systems. Watch this video about systems.

    JAN 5 // Clean up and organzine files and photos on your computer. Back up everything!

    JAN 6 // Organize your email inbox. Get your inbox to zero.

    JAN 7 // Clean up and organize apps and photos on your phone.

    JAN 8 // Read one new book. I’m currently reading How to Murder Your Life” by Kat Marnell. So dramatic, so juicy, so good.

    JAN 10 // Get your refrigerator to look like this.

    JAN 11 //  Pick out a new planner. Here are some great planner organization ideas I put together for you!

    JAN 12 // Clean up and stow away Christmas decorations if you haven’t done so yet.

    JAN 13 // Try a new workout class.

    JAN 14 // Cook way more starting now. Meal planning and prepping are great, but just getting started is the key.  It’s far more motivating after you’ve done it once or twice. I’m using these two cookbooks to source new recipes. How Not to Die + Eat Love Real Food. Reevaluate your current diet, and try to implement changes you know are necessary.

    JAN 15 // Celebrate MLK jr. day by doing something Martin Luther King-esque for the people around you.

    JAN 16 // Take care of any gift returns.

    JAN 17 // Prune the trees in your yard if applicable. Get rid of any damaged, crowded, or dead limbs. This starts the preparations for the coming season.

    JAN 18 // Check out your 2018 horoscope here! Mine was creepily relevant.

    JAN 19  // Plan a date night with your special person.

    JAN 20 // Try tracking your steps with a pedometer and see how much walking you are actually doing throughout the day.

    JAN 21 // Begin collecting documents as they come in the mail to prepare for federal and state taxes. Cross your fingers for a good return!

    JAN 22 // Begin preparing for Valentine’s Day, especially if you have children. Sort out dinner plans and/or reservations, book a sitter if necessary, and purchase valentine’s for your children’s classroom celebrations. You can never prep for these things too early because just like Christmas, they sneak up too damn fast!

    JAN 23 // Restock any cold and flu supplies you may have used up over the holidays or prior. Trust me on this one. I can’t tell you how many times Harlow or Lu broke out in a fever and baby Tylenol was nowhere to be found. You don’t want to trek to the store amidst the chaos, so stay prepared! That was a tough lesson I had to learn a few times last year. Eek.

    JAN 24 // Schedule your yearly physical, as well as any other appointments you can make in advance. Whip out that brand new planner!

    JAN 25 // Update your resume or media kit (if applicable).

    JAN 26 // Begin brainstorming or planning any family vacations or trips you’ll be taking this coming year.

    JAN 27 // Start monitoring your water intake. I can almost guarantee you drink way less than you think.

    JAN 28 // Create a 2018 vision board, or refresh your vision board if you already have one.

    JAN 29 // Take an e-course on something that interests you!

    JAN 30 // Evaluate the top three problems or issues you are having in your life right now and begin making moves in order to resolve or improve their current state.

    JAN 31 // Pull out your V-day decor, and maybe even chocolate dip some strawberries! Prepare for the month of love!

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    GETTING ORGANIZED IN THE NEW YEAR.

    Receipt envelope// I am borderline obsessed with these. I have a good stack of them going, but I’m not kidding, they come in handy in so many circumstances! I use one in my glovebox to keep my registration and proof of insurance (as well as a checklist of what to do when you get in an accident), I keep one in my purse to keep all of my important receipts, and I have another I use just for coupons which I keep clipped on my car’s sun visor. The options are endless, but I would definitely keep one in your planner for any important papers. I like the clear one so I can see what contents it’s holding, but there are a bunch of colors to choose from. Also, did I mention they cost just over a buck?! Don’t let the price fool you, they hold up super well, assuming you don’t overstuff them (I’ve had mine for years).

    Pencil pouch// I love these pencil/pen pouches because they are wipeable if any ink spills, and they can hold so much. They are also super fantastic for make up or as wet bags. Super durable, affordable, and come in three different sizes.

    Planner page markers// The planner I chose didn’t come with any tabs to mark my spot, so I picked these Magnolia ones up from Target, and they’ve been put to good use–plus they match the gold etched on the planner’s cover.

    Sticky notes// I don’t feel like these need an explanation. These are a must when it comes to planning, also great to use on your wall calendar for events that may get moved around.

    2018 Planner// I found this planner at Target, and I couldn’t find the hard bound one I have, but this is the exact replica of it, just spiral bound. I paid around $10 for it, and so far it’s been perfect. I like the simple look of the cover as well.

    Adhesive pen loop// I also added this to my planner to keep a pen attached to it for when I’m on the go.

    Mechanical no. 2 pencil// I have three pens/pencils I use. I love the no.2 mechanical pencils like this one. Paper Mate makes some pretty colored ones as well.

    Sharpie marker pen// I love marker pens, especially for when I’m writing in fancy font. This pen is great because the sharpie ink lasts forever and it doesn’t bleed through the pages.

    Papermate Profile pen// Favorite pens of all time! That is all.

    Productivity planner// This is such a good resource to use alongside your planner. It helps you to prioritize your goals in a straightforward way while using the pomodoro method.

    Moleskine notebook// I keep this in my purse at all times–for any ideas that may strike, lists that need to be made, for my little ones to doodle in when I need to keep them busy in a pinch, and the list goes on. I’m a fan of the classic red one.

    Planner stickers// Just to add a little fun and color to your planner while still keeping everything super organized. I also love this option, and this option as well.

    Business card holder// Always keep your cards on you! You never know who you’re going to run into when you are out and about.

    Wall calendar// Everything at-a-glance. We have a wall calendar hung in our home’s “command center,” where we keep our vision boards and our family calendar. Everything everyone has going on goes on the calendar. No exceptions. This way there are no surprises, everything is in plain site, and everyone stays on schedule. We even write down when Luca has school or Miles or I work, even though they are  recurring events, but putting everything down, keeps everyone on the same page. It’s been super helpful for our family. I will note that I still put reminders in my phone for important things like doctors appointments and one-off events just to keep my head in the game.

    As you’ve read previously, my word of the year is “wellness,” and part of personal wellness for me is cleansing my paperwork, my workspace, and keeping up a neat & punctual schedule. These are some of my favorites to keep a productive flow, and I hope they’ll help you find yours as well! What is your favorite agenda or planner? I always feel so torn when I’m on the hunt for one. I’ve spent a lot of money on planners in the past only to use maybe 20% of it. So simple (and inexpensive!) it is! Cheers to all the fun things I’m planning for this year, I can’t wait to share them with all of you!

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    A LOOK BACK ON 2017 AND WHAT TO EXPECT IN 2018.

    I remember January 1st of last year thinking it would be a big year of “change.” It was an instinctual feeling I can’t really explain, but I just knew change was a comin.’ I didn’t know what type of change, thinking it would be a circumstantial change, career-wise and financially speaking. However, I never realized it would none of those things, but rather be a year of internal change, metaphorically speaking. 2017 was a huge year of learning, and owning up to previous mistakes. It was a year of self-care and relationship-care. 2017 brought its fair share of joys, but proved itself extremely difficult in my marriage as I shared a few weeks back. With Miles and I choosing each other all over again, 2018 feels pretty promising already. I look forward to sharing more about us in the coming year. P.S. Your kind responses and supportive words meant everything to me! Here’s a mini recap of last year:

    January: Finally got around to making this video of our trip to Italy and France. Continued working at getting back into my old pre-pregnancy jeans, and started taking better care of myself. Remodeled the blog to the way it looks now! And spent a lot of time outdoors as our apartment was sooo tiny!

    February: Miles and I celebrated sharing 4 years of marriage together. Luca started playing soccer! Put up my first make up you tube video. Harlow was officially on earth for as long as he was inside of me. Also contemplated another baby as well as what only having two meant for us.

    March: Decided we wouldn’t renew our lease in May. Started looking for places to move to…again.

    April: Found a home! Moved from Cardiff by the Sea to Carlsbad.

    May: Started working outside my home again, waitressing at the breakfast cafe I work at now. Harlow turned 1 whole year old! We threw him a puppy party! Finally felt back to “myself” again, since having Harlow.

    June: I turned 27 whole years old! Finally settled in our new home. Unexpectedly fell in love with Carlsbad.

    July: Celebrated Luca turning 4! He had a Dino birthday with a bounce house at the park!

    August: Luca started school! It was his first day of preschool, and it felt completely unreal to us.

    September: Continued nursing Harlow, despite what I thought nursing would be like.

    October: Saw Coldplay in concert just a week after the shooting in Las Vegas. Dressed up as a family for Halloween! We were Star Wars and it was SO much fun. See us here!

    November: Miles turned 31. I got to work with Folger’s coffee in a partnership! It was crazy! I never thought this place would ever become anything but an online journal, so everything beyond that is just bananas in the cereal!

    December: Wrapped up the year, wrapped all the presents, and had a wonderful holiday with all those I love.

    Last year, I focused on simplifying my life. Overall, I feel like I definitely simplified a lot of what I tend to get enthralled in. It was a huge practice, and I cut back on so much excess I thought I “needed,” but, in reality, didn’t. This year my word is “wellness.” I feel like there is so much internal wellness for me to focus on, both mind and body. I want to monitor more of what I put in and on my body as well as focus a bit more on the thoughts I let flood my mind. Sometimes I’m so concentrated on the external of everything that happens around me, my circumstances, and things out of my control, that I forget those things I do have control over– Things like self talk, diet, exercise, meditation, and spirituality. My wellness journey is always a work in progress, so being hyper focused on it will definitely help highlight it as a priority in my life. What is your word for 2018? You’re welcome to take mine or come up with your own, but just remember the why behind what word you decide on. The WHY is everything.

    Things you can expect over here in 2018!:

    More personal posts: I found such a relief and support in my marriage post. It definitely encouraged me to post more about things I sometimes think twice about before publishing.

    More video!: I’m hoping to incorporate more video via my instagram stories and youtube channel.

    More travel: I want to make travel a priority this year, and can’t wait to bring my camera and all of you along with me!

    More interaction: I want to spend way more time interacting with you! I promise I will be better about DMs and comments!

    More wellness: It is my word of the year after all. I’ll be sharing way more posts on here about what I’m doing to feel my absolute best.

    & More posts overall: I made it a point to be much more consistent around here last year, and I want to try and keep with it again this year!

    I hope every one of you has a wonderful 2018 and I hope it brings you all you could ever dream of! Here’s to a healthy and happy 2018!

     

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    HAPPY NEW YEAR! 2018!

    Happy 2018! I’m watching Harry and the Hendersons, bringing the first day of the new year to a close. And now I’m also wondering, “what the hell does that say about how my year is supposed to go?!” May it be one for the books!

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    HAPPY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR’S EVE.

    This post has been in my drafts for days. I had a whole slew of posts lined up gearing us all up for the new year, but then I got hit with the flu, and man did I get hit hard. I felt like I had been hit by a semi truck. I’m pretty good with pain management, but this was something else. Dare I say I felt even worse than laboring and birthing 9 pound Harlow? It was bad. I must have taken 8 hot baths and showers in a 8 hour period to keep the body aches down. I couldn’t stomach anything, and I was useless. I didn’t even feel well enough to watch TV, scroll through my phone, or even sleep. It was terrible. I was lying in bed for the entire day, and at some points thought I was dying. Dramatic much? It hurt, to say the very least, but it did have some good that it brought. It was a huge reminder of how thankful I am to have my health. People, young and old, live with chronic pain, cancers, incurable diseases, and many other hurts, but I have my health and there isn’t a price I can put on that. I’m truly grateful for my well-being. And I am keeping all of you and yours in my heart and prayers now and in the coming new year!

    How is it NYE??? Yikes. It’s true what they say, time flies once you have kids. A few photos below from our Christmas! I hope yours was the best yet. I will have our yearly recap, and what to expect in 2018 up tomorrow (and the ledger too, of course)! And I may sound super “mom-ish” in saying this, but think about staying in and keep safe tonight. Pop all the bubbly and cheers to this new beginning, friends! Also, sorry for the grainy photos, my editing was well below par while I did this. Still recovering….100% tomorrow, I swear!
    Our “alberta spruce.” I cannot wait for the day when we get a real tree again, or at least a good fake that looks real, ha!Our stockings hung, and the advent calendar cleared out…The mini kraft paper wall!
    Our tiny kitchen and our favorite spot in it, the coffee bar.Our entryway.Seeing if Santa came!
    Checking if the reindeer ate their carrots we left at the front door…Opening gifts.
    Running around my dad’s warehouse.

    Another perfect Christmas, here and gone. I’m so excited for another year, and another chance to keep on keeping on, only this time even better than last ;).

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    MARRIAGE IS HARD.

    Location: going to the chapel

    Honest writing is authentic writing, no matter how hard. Sometimes I’ll write something down and get through the post only to delete it, fearing what people might think of me. I’ve been listening to Oprah’s super soul conversations on CD lately–(I know, are CD’s still a thing? Apparently so…) My bluetooth adapter decided to take a dive to the other side, and now I’m back on that 2003 CD lifestyle. Anyhow, Oprah. Good ol’ O. Oprah decided to blow my mind per usual within the first chapter of her audiobook. She was having a conversation about the book, “The Unteathered Soul” by Michael Singer, with who else but Michael Singer himself. I clearly need to read his book. It’s both Oprah and Chopra approved which basically makes it a bible. She was talking about separating the soul from the self. Separating the self from the spirit. Realizing your thoughts are separate from who you are. It was mind blowing. I could never explain it as clear as I heard it, but in that moment, I felt like I needed to be a little more me, more open book, and more soul bearing with intention. Give you all a little bit more of my true self.

    With all of that said, I’ve written super briefly before about the challenges I’ve been having lately–pretty much only letting you know that I’ve been having problems, and then stating I’d come back to talk more in depth. And here I am. I am showing up today.

    Marriage is a funny concept, isn’t it? I mean some even refer to it as the “institution of marriage” which in my opinion sounds downright awful. I never knew what they meant when they said, “Marriage is work.” Miles and I jumped into it, never really questioning the overall meaning or reasoning as to why people marry to begin with. It seemed like the logical next step for two people who had chosen one another, and at the time felt as though they’d be a fit forever. I vowed to grow with him, love him unconditionally, and to always, remember, no matter how far we may part from one another, I’d always find my way “home.” I meant what I said, but meaning what you say and practicing that meaning are two entirely different things. Read more

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