1.03.2012

IN WITH THE NEW



tomorrow we're flying to utah for brandon's poppy's funeral. after a month or so of quickly dwindling health, poppy left us last week to join his wife on the other side. we're so happy for poppy, though we'll miss him terribly. in my faith we believe that the next life is a continuation of this one, that we will live with god again, and that the families we create here on earth will continue on in heaven. poppy's death isn't sad, it's a celebration. he was 92. what a blessing.

i've been wondering a lot what it would be like to be in poppy's place this past month. after living a long, full life, what kind of preparations do you make at the very end? what kind of resolutions do you seek? what are your loose ends, how do you tie them up? i read this fascinating article linked in a tweet the other day and tried to imagine what i would regret in my final weeks. all the time i spend feeling inadequate and worried about what people think of me, probably?

i wish i had let myself feel happier, is number five in that article. what a horrible thing to regret.

a few years back, as i was driving home from work, i had a silly thought that suddenly turned straight genius on me. i realized that all i really wanted was for my life to be beautiful. i wanted my home to be beautiful, i wanted my thoughts to be beautiful, i wanted my feelings to be beautiful. i wanted to create beauty in my life. if it was worth doing, i wanted it to be done beautifully. life didn't seem beautiful at the time, but i wanted it to. it was silly and shallow, until suddenly it wasn't. god created for us an insanely beautiful world. beauty around every corner. music, art, science. all beautiful. and loving families, a passion for learning, and a sense that we can have an impact on what surrounds us-- to me, that is beauty. and holy, for sure. so i stopped considering that desire shallow. i started to think of it as a way of honoring god, who is the one who created beauty to begin with, after all. 


i feel like i do have a beautiful life. but there are many things i'd regret, if i were called up today. things i'm sure i have complete control over when it comes right down to it.

so, at the start of this new, beautiful year, here are a few of my wishes. 
here is what i wish to resolve.

2012

X i'd like to learn to live without fear of embarrassment, or of judgement. i want to live purely in the moment, effusively and wholly. i want to believe that i'm enough just like i am. i'd like to kick low self-esteem and worries of inadequacy right out the door, finally. i'm going to be thirty this year and i feel really ready for it. i suspect that turning thirty will feel freeing. like, i'm a grown up now, so knock it off. this is who i am. take it or take it. AND SHOVE IT. no, don't shove it. okay, shove it, but only if you want to.

X oh dear heavens, i'd like another baby. (a girl this time? can i make requests?) it's scary for me to admit this out loud. i'm scared to even think it. i'm scared of another hard slog, and i'm afraid my body will fail me again. i don't know if i'll be strong enough to go through all that again. but that's what i want. i'm ready to admit it and i'm ready and go for it. (i think)

X i want for brandon to feel, every single day, how much i love him. i want it to be a tangible thing he can hold onto as he falls asleep at night. i want for there never to be any question in his heart.  

X i want henry to grow up knowing that i love him to the ends of the earth, that he is perfect just as god made him, that i support him no matter what, and that i WILL crack down on him if he acts a fool. 

X i want to eat more rice krispy treats. like, whole pans full!


i have a really good feeling about this 2012 business. 
i saw a little note on instagram : "it will be whatever you choose."
i'm ready, and i choose for it to be beautiful.

68 comments :

  1. Those are such beautiful goals/resolutions for yourself. I saw that article on twitter as well. Read it and loved it. Its a great way to reavaluate your life and what you want out of it.

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  2. That, my dear, was truly lovely. Wishing you a wonderful 2012 with cookies aplenty and happinesses small and large.

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  3. Happy New Year Nat. Good luck with baby making...even if it is hard it will be worth it (and at least you have Henry to distract you this time).

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  4. it's true. happiness is a choice. beauty is a choice. giving into fear is a choice. i love your first one, and i love what you say about brandon. so important for our spouse or significant other to know that. and yes, it's ok to crack down on henry if he acts a fool. but with you and brandon to raise him i don't see that happening very often. happy 2012 - it sounds like you have great plans!

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  5. Your goals are wonderful. I wish you a happy new year. And, by gosh, that Henry is a cutie.

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  6. Cheers to all of these great rezzies, but most especially the first one! I was just telling myself if I could kick the habit of perpetually holding my accomplishments up against others, I'd be much happier and more likely to be a better person. Here's to 2012, your handsome men, and finally getting that adorable Lovin girl you've been dreaming about since 2006!

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  7. Thanks for that, Nat...your resolutions brought tears to my eyes. They're all things worthy of contemplation & I wish you the very best of luck with each and every one.

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  8. Lovely goals! I too need to live without fear. I'm working on that...but it scares me. Ha

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  9. Thanks for the daily dose of happy thoughts. Sometimes you come across a few choice words or a photograph that give you that inspirational pick-me-up but with your blog it's happening all the time and I'm really grateful. Thank you.

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  10. I too like what you said about your hubby...and yes a good mama cracks down on their kids when they act a fool! lol love how you put that!
    www.thehazelstreetdiaries.blogspot.com

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  11. This is beautiful Natalie! Those are some good resolutions. Much better than mine! Same every year... "go to the gym", "NO REALLY go to the gym", "I'M REALLY GOING TO DO IT go to the gym".

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  12. What a great post! Here's to a beautiful 2012!

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  13. Beautiful. And I know what you mean about turning 30. I think that whole freeing thing happened to me (a whole big year ago). I only wish I hadn't waited 30 years for it! I see some of that "shove it"ness in my two year old girl (as two year are often known to possess), and even though it can be challenging sometimes, I want to grab her and tell her to never let that go!! I don't know how the world sucks that fiestiness out of little girls, but I want to make darn sure she (and her little sister) holds on to as much of it as she can. You know, except, in a more refined sort of way. Like with less flailing and stuff.

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  14. Ah! You made me tear up! I loved the entirety of your striving to make life beautiful. I love that your posts are both inspiring and make me laugh at the same time. I know many people who struggled to conceive with their first and had a much easier time with the second, and I hope the same is for you - you should have more babies. AND I loved your comment about your Holbs. I'm done rambling - but this was one of my favorites.

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  15. A beautiful post! Cheers to a beautiful 2012!! And I would also like to eat pans of rice krispy treats. I think that would be good.

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  16. Thank you for sharing this post! I loved it with my whole heart, and it brought me to tears. We struggled getting pregnant the first time, and so when it {finally} happened, and we had our two little babes safe and home, I told myself that I would do my best to be happy with them and not ask for more. But I got a feeling, too, that more would come. And one is on his way. I wish you the very best easy time getting pregnant again, and I'm so glad you shared your faith with us.

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  17. Thanks for the beautiful post - a window into a beautiful person. Just started reading your blog and love it! Faith is the surest way to have happiness in everything... Hang on to it as it will never steer you wrong:)

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  18. Oh! This post was so beautiful... I really needed to read something like this today :) I saw a commercial the other day (for nokia?) and it said.. 'tomorrow the sun will rise and set, the rest is up for grabs'. This is my 2012 motto. I need to keep in mind that I am in control of what kind of life I want to lead, and my feelings & thoughts.

    I love the pics of Huck walking. I think he is seriously the cutest kid ever, I die seeing his pics on Instagram! x

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  19. thanks for this post! so good. very needed today!

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  20. This is good. So good.

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  21. that was a beautiful post :)

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  22. Love this post! I don't enjoy resolutions so much, but I definitely have hopes and dreams. :) Happy New Year!

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  23. How wonderful for Poppy that he now gets to rejoin his beloved!

    Beauty is such a wonderful goal. I've recently come to the same type of peak in my life as well, and love the way you've expressed yourself here.

    Finding joy in the everyday is what keeps this little mama ticking, and heading into the office instead of snuggling up at home with the boy. Some day... *sigh*...some day very soon. But for now, I choose the joy, and the beauty, in every moment I get to spend with him.

    Isn't being a mom the best!!! It hurt to have to wait so long, but it was soooo worth it.

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  24. Thanks for talking about beauty in life, about how it seems shallow but isn't. I wholeheartedly believe that the Creator made us to see beauty and to create beauty; but gosh, sometimes I need a reminder.

    Thanks for being that for me today.

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  25. i met an old man the other day in a gas station who kept complaining about how he lives in "the slums," and all he could talk about was how he used to be rich and fancy. i felt sad for him that he was still so bent on immaterial things in his old age. i hope i value different things when i'm at the tail end of my life.

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  26. Thanks for the inspirational post Nat! I really appreciated your thoughts on beauty. Here's to a beautiful 2012 full of love (for ourselves and family) and baby girls for both of us! Oh and please please please never stop writing the wonderful things that go on in that brain of yours. :)

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  27. My favorite post yet.

    The other day I listened to a talk given by someone I can't even remember. They quoted the scripture "Men are that they might have joy." This hit me hard - like DUH! Of course! I am here to experience JOY!! It never hit me that way before, and now my outlook has completely changed. Your goals are awesome. I love this time of year!

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  28. This is one of the best goal lists I've read. I'll jump on board with the tangible love and the no fear living and another baby. Love your blog (and huck looks great walking!)

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  29. What an awesome post! Thank you for reminding us about what really matters. I do believe it is our job and responsibility to be happy in this life, even on days when it is not easy.

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  30. Beautifully written! I think those are things that most human beings struggle with: insecurities, worry, fear, doubt. Be YOU and release all of those things when they creep into your thoughts. Your blog is truly a treat. Bless you and your sweet family during this new year!

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  31. And this post pretty much sums up why I love NatTheFatRat. Beautiful. Your blog puts a smile on my face every day.

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  32. This is a really great post. Really, really great. And wonderful. And great.

    Thanks for being honest and real, Nat. I like people like you.

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  33. Such a beautiful and thoughtful post Natalie. And you are such a beautiful and thoughtful person. Thank you for sharing this today. What wonderful goals for 2012. Goals we should all aspire to achieve.

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  34. i love this post, and your neon pink pants.
    i hope all your new years goals/wishes all come true. especially the baby one. you make very cute babies!
    p.s. i know what you mean about fearing something, but at the same time having this strong secure feeling/confirmation that it WILL all work out.

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  35. this has got to be one of the best "welcome 2012" posts i've read.

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  36. You can have Tamsin if you want!!! Baby girl, all ready and waiting. Just 18 months older than your imagined baby girl. But who's counting?

    Just kidding--but seriously, I have to share a revelation of my own about Tamsin. As you may recall, Tamsin is my VERY VERY DIFFICULT child. Yesterday she screamed on and off every twenty minutes for an entire day, I kid you not, and even threw in some screaming at 3:30 am for good measure. I was completely out of patience and happy thoughts for Tamsin. And then at 10:00 pm last night I sat down to read a book, and I was suddenly overwhelmed by a vision in which all of Tamsin's awfulness and crankypantyness and her spankable little bottom were placed in their proper frame, and I could see that this hard time would last awhile, and then it would be over and I'd be left with a wonderful little girl. I literally felt for the smallest moment the happiness and laughter I would feel for this grown-up girl waiting for me around the corner. (Because Tamsin, though occasionally sweet, does not often inspire happiness OR laughter.) And then the moment was gone. But it was the most comforting revelation I've had in awhile--something I needed to put my current aggravations into proper perspective. And It came completely unbidden. God really helps us mommies out sometimes!!!

    I really feel it: 2012 is going to be a good year. And I'm really going to make my butt shrink and go to bed on time and stop making spontaneous purchases at Forever 21 this year. It's really gonna happen!!!

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  37. P.S. As to beauty, my friend, that is why I studied Humanities (you know, the major that inspires rude people to ask, "Oh...is that a major for people who don't know what to major in?" Um, no, it is not. But thanks for being rude.) Humanities is the study of art, design, literature, music, dance, and all things that produce beauty and testify of God. It literally fills my soul with light and expands my world. I need to find beauty in everything around me, even if these days that beauty comes as a picked-up house or some good music on while I pretend not to see all the toys on the floor. We ARE supposed to bring beauty and order and light to our homes--that's part of our calling!!! And a well-decorated, clean, and orderly home is the seedbed for even more beauty. Why else would our temples be so beautiful?

    This, perhaps, is the reason I finally forewent that awesome Art Nouveau absinthe poster I was eyeballing for my living room. It was beautiful, historical, and evocative, and matched my couch pillows. All pluses to a humanities major! But it also had boobs on it. So...I'm not sure a good Mormon girl intentionally advertises liquor and boobs in her living room. Too bad, really.

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  38. That very last little sentance made me cry! It will be what you choose. I feel like there has been a theme this year with new years resolutions. Every one wants to take out the fear in their lives and replace it with strength. Thanks for this essay. Its really beautiful and what I think all of us want out of life.

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  39. Ok we've talked about CLOMID before. I used it with my first after two years of emotional roller coasters. Then with the second I didn't want to mess around so the first month I quit nursing (my son was about 14 mo) I called my ob and got my CLOMID. Got pregnant with little miss Max that very month. Two CLOMID babies thank you! Then with this one I am currently gestating we were about to try again but I wanted to give it a few months before I ran for the CLOMID. I still didn't completely trust my body could do it. And when I went to Hawaii to visit my mom her crazy herbalist friend asked me out of the blue if I had trouble ovulating bc I looked "yeasty" to her and "did I know that a build up of yeast makes your ovaries like rubber?" no I did not, and I then informed her that I really don't get yeast infections anyway so how "yeasty" could I actually be?? She said you can be really "yeasty" and have no symptoms and if I would try her product that only she sells (here we go, this is what I was thinking) that u would be cured of having to use CLOMID. Well, for $30 some dollars I drank 4 drops of liquid probiotics and what do you know, I ovulated all by my very own self the first month I used it and the two months after. The third month I got pregnant. Crazy!!! My ob thinks I'm crazy. Heck, I think I'm crazy, but I know it worked. Best of luck in your baby girl making endeavors!

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  40. You are right on sister! Love your thoughts on beauty. And you are right, thirty is going to be awesome. I'm 31 and 1/2 now and though I can not fully describe the difference between my twenties and my thirties, it's there. I'm more comfortable, more satisfied with simple life...just all around happier. Good luck with all of your resolutions!

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  41. Ah Natalie! Thanks for that! You're my friend even if you don't know it ;) That was lovely

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  42. Could you send me a pan of rice krispie treats? They're my favorite. I could send you some delicious chocolate chip cookies in return. Happy New Year. I love the goals, especially the one about not having fear. Embrace 30.

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  43. You're starting out on the right foot. Beautiful post!

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  44. Beautiful post girl! I too echo your sentiments on having a beautiful life. Not one that's picture perfect because who really is, but one that is filled with purpose, joy, and wonder.

    And holla' for the babies of 1982! I hit the big ol' dirty thirty in November. I'm equally dreading/anticipating it. You've got a great attitude about it!

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  45. That post was beautiful and so are you and your life! I really hope when it's time for baby #2 it does happen for you without all the stress. Keep holding onto that faith and hope. You deserve it.

    "You are a lone reed. You are a lone reed, standing tall, waving boldly in the corrupt sands of commerce."

    XO

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  46. lovely goals. why is it that people (myself included) struggle with wanting simplicity and beauty in their lives? it's not shallow at all!!

    ooohhh a little baby girl. that would be entirely cute.

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  47. Yes.

    And may 2012 also bring you beauty you've not even imagined.

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  48. Firstly, I thought you and Huck were ice skating in the first photo.

    And next, well, I feel like you about 2012. I'm just turning 29, but I feel that "adulthood" comin' round the bend, and I'm ready to take it AND shove it. Or something.

    Good luck! And that beauty, thought, that is profundity. And I wish for your fecundity!

    Yes.

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  49. good thoughts, those! and huck's sweater is adorrrable!! : )

    i love how you see beauty in everything. and isn't it nice how knowing our loved ones are happy & safe w/ our Father makes it hurt just a little less that they're gone from our presence?

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  50. Your post inspired my only resolution this year - to act on those "promptings" that most of the time I think are just thoughts from my own head. Even if they are, who cares, right? I will treat them like they're not because they're usually beautiful thoughts.

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  51. Thank you for lifting my thoughts, and helping me think more positively (at least for a little bit.) I love that so often when I am doing reading your posts cheers me up. The rice krispy treats made me laugh.

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  52. one of your best posts of all time. and i have read every one of your posts. best of wishes for the new year!

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  53. Stupendous post. I think I'm going to run with this one and tell all my girlfriends. Natalie said "just be beautiful"! So many times I forget that it's that simple, to love and enjoy life and let it loves me back.

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  54. Nat -- I really love this post. Thanks so much for putting your thoughts out there. Usually I skim over other people's resolutions so I can think of my own uncluttered by other people's thoughts. But yours I'm glad I read. So lovely. Here's to a beautiful 2012.

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  55. these resolutions are so touching... may this be a beautiful 2012 for all of us!

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  57. beautiful Natalie, just absolutely beautiful.

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  58. Natalie, I completely agree with you by wanting everything to be beautiful. I used to feel guilty wanting to have a beautiful home or to look beautiful or to produce something beautiful... but then I heard a sermon once where my pastor was talking about service and how through cleaning a neighbor's yard, we weren't only helping them, but we were beautifying her yard, which is how God originally created things, as beautiful! So wanting things to be beautiful isn't shallow or vain, as long as we are seeking to create beauty to bring honor back to God.

    blessings! :)

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  59. Love, love, LOVE this post. It was so refreshing to read. Thank you for writing it.

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  60. I loved the quote "It will be whatever you choose." That changed my attitude today entirely, and I quoted it on my depression support blog! Thanks for sharing.

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  61. This is so amazing. What you just wrote reminds me a lot of the book I'm reading right now. It's called "Cold Tangerines." It's about a woman who finally realized the beauty this life had to offer and the gloriousness of what God created. I think you'd really like it!

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  62. THIS is such a beautiful post. So inspiring. Thank you for that. Happy 2012! :)

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  63. Hi aunt Natalie, it's Makayla. Henry is the cutest little thing.

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  64. ok nat, an entire blog post inspired by your writing!

    http://www.chroniclesofshe.com/2012/01/beauty.html

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  65. Happy New Year! My goodness, do you two make a cute pair. xo emma

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  66. I love your goals for 2012 too! I really need to blog mine before I forget what they are. Im sorry you will be in UT for a funeral - but - I am in UT too, was wondering if you were going to do any type of meetup while you are here to meet your Utah readers? That would be awesome!

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  67. I'm a bit late in telling you this, but this post brought me to tears. I absolutely loved it. The part about your revelation about beauty was just that: beautiful. And your resolutions are so inspiring. (And may 2012 be the year of more babies for many of us!!!)

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