1.12.2015

IN WHICH WE DISCUSS RESOLUTIONS

(should one of my resolutions be to keep this mirror more clean?) (probably)

Happy New Year! The dentist appointments have been scheduled. We're knocking them back one at a time. I'm seeing my fertility specialist in a few weeks to re-discuss strategy (one of these days remind me to write a post about how trying to get pregnant while fertile-challenged is basically just solving a rubics cube of scheduling). I've spackled together a cleaning schedule that'll keep this place spotless without depressing me overly much (vacuuming! somehow vacuuming is the worst!). I'm making it to my yoga class here . . . one of these days. I feel really good about things! It feels like January! Fresh starts! I have even been making a list of goals for myself! I almost never make New Years resolutions for myself, but this year I've been really into it for some reason.

What's that you say? You want me to share these resolutions with you? Well, hey! Let me share these resolutions with you!

ONE // This is the year that I am going to master Meal Planning. Capital M Capital P. No no, I mean it. My goal is to have a healthy dinner that I prepare, from scratch, on the table at a reasonable hour, at least three times a week. Brandon has requested that these not cost an arm and a leg, which means, sigh, no lobster (I am allergic to lobster, do you believe this!?). Money-saving, healthy dinners, I am aware that this is the simplest and most basic task a stay-at-home-mother should have mastered already. I know, I know it. We'll let it go.

TWO // Continue to simplify. Between the capsule experiment I did last year, the everyday challenge that is living calmly + peacefully in this open loft space of ours, and our slower, more holistic lifestyle in Brooklyn, I've gotten a little bit addicted to simplifying, organizing, and living with less. Airy and lovely. I hope to extend into other areas of my life as well. And you know, it feels like an accomplishment, the level of peace + calm I feel every time I walk into my home, and it should. I'm going to take more pride in the housekeeping that I do, because it matters. For a hot minute there I'd forgotten to make room on my list of acceptable satisfaction sources for nest fluffing.

THREE // I have a book coming out this year! So I'm putting my head down and going to try and focus on, well . . . that stuff. Like this blog for example! For the first time in my decade of blogging (ouch), I'm attempting an editorial calendar. Geez that sounds nerdy. Basically this means that every time I walk around and think to myself "hey, that'd make a great blog post!" that I actually make it into a great blog post. Hopefully great. But you never know. I don't know why this seems so daunting to me. It feels like eating cheese after finding out I'm not lactose intolerant, when really I wasn't ever lactose intolerant to begin with, more that I've been lactose . . . intimidated? Also. There are things I've missed writing that you may or may not have missed reading: like my Forever 21 posts. I try not to shop there, not even for fast fashion reasons, but also because of, well, flood gates / open, yadda yadda yadda, but I so miss writing those posts. They were so much fun. Should I bring them back? Would that seem overly disingenuous? Or maybe JUST RIGHT disingenuous? ;) And link roundups to interesting things I've been reading.  Remember when I used to do link roundups on Fridays with my Babble posts? And beauty posts. Topical things. Stand-alone essays. Gosh, I've been lazy in here. Here goes nothing.

FOUR // This is going to be the year we tackle eczema, so help me Bob! This will require torturous Aquaphor application before bed and a bit of experimenting with our diet during the day. It honestly sounds like the hugest headache to me, but Huck! You don't know it yet but your life is going to be so much radder without eczema! (Gosh, why are boys so happy living with the dumbest irritations rather than put some effort into something? Only four and already he thinks he knows everything. I will have my way on this one, you turkey!)

FIVE // Move More. Since moving to Brooklyn I tend to feel far less stir crazy than I did when I was living in Manhattan. Which is wonderful! But I'm losing steam on the staircases lately, and the days when I come home sore from having the city underfoot are lately few and far between. I've realized I miss walking, and the time it affords me to think things through and marinate on stuff. I have plenty of reasons to be out, I just need to remind myself to go out and stay out once I'm there. Take advantage of this city while I have it! You know, buy the groceries in person rather than ordering them online. Like today! Today I am going to go TO THE DRUGSTORE to get my Vitamin D supplements, rather than go to Amazon Prime. Pats all over my back right now. 

SIX // Take a biology class. This is because, some day, when my baby period is over (not yet! NOT YET!) I hope to get my Lactation Consultant Certification and spend all my days helping boobies and babies make magic. It'll take approximately 500 years to get there at the rate I'm taking it, which is really okay with me. I'm super hoping to be too distracted by a baby sometime soon to get around to it, so, just the one online biology class. That'll do. 

SEVEN // Write more. I want to sit myself down and write about the day I just had, every night, before bed. (I also want to pick up some fiction writing but I am not making that a resolution.)

Whew! Are you making any resolutions this year? It feels like a resolution kind of year, doesn't it? If you're making any I want to know yours too! Spill it so we can all remember the things we forgot we needed to work on this year. :)

38 comments :

  1. I've made several loose resolutions, but nothing terribly concrete. Instead, I'm focusing on one word for the year - "evolve". I'm going to apply it to each area of my life and see what happens. Hopefully it'll be really positive and I'll end up a whole heap better at the end of 2015. We'll see. Good luck with your resolutions, Nat! I'm sure you'll do fabulously.

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  2. Good luck with them....sounds like you're going to have a very filled 2015!!

    http://vodkaandarose.blogspot.co.uk

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  3. Good Luck with your resolutions Natalie!!! I don't make resolutions, I always fall flat on my face... Lol.

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  4. yeah!!! 2 is where it's at. Fully support all the goals, but numero 2 has my heart most. (p.s. one of mine is to comment more on blogs I read every damn day--how'm I doing? great, right??)

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  5. love this!

    www.amoderngypsy.blogspot.com

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  7. Seriously, I have some super recommendations for the whole eczema situation if you're interested. I'm not one to offer too much unsolicited advice, mostly because I hate getting unsolicited advice myself, so if you're keen on receiving a few little tidbits, I'm happy to oblige. Cheers to the New Year!

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  8. two recipes that belong on that there meal plans of yours because they’re FAB and they both use several of the same ingredients, making them perfect to make within the same week (plus the quesadillas freeze beautifully): chipotle lime shrimp tacos (http://lrennie.blogspot.com/2014/06/tzatziki-chicken-salad-and-chipotle.html), and black bean quesadillas (http://www.budgetbytes.com/2012/02/hearty-black-bean-quesadillas/)

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  9. meal planning. good luck! i think it may not tidy itself up by the end of the year- it takes practice and there are only so many weeks! please post about how that goes- i think it's one of those things where every bit of knowledge helps.

    one of my resolutions is baking bread. so far- jim lahey's no knead was a success. (http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/11376-no-knead-bread)

    happy new year!

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  10. I'm taking biology this semester! I'm incredibly nervous about it because science and I have never really gotten along. We're also working on meal planning because I'll have night class and I told my husband that means he has to feed me. We'll see how it goes. Resolutions are to stop accumulating stuff-y stuff and actually study and be kinder.

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  11. Yes yes yes! Bring back the beauty experiments and the forever 21 posts and the link round ups. Bring it all back, girl!

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  12. Good luck on your fertility! -Hanna Lei

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  13. i looooove meal planning! and the girl i turn to the most for fast and easy and healthy and delicious food is melskitchencafe.com. just a little tip!

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  14. I've actually been reading your archives for fun lately and I've totally been nostalgic for the old beauty and forever 21 posts! I love those. Also, making frozen meals is the way to go if you have freezer space. Andddd super random question, but will your book be available for the kindle?

    Good luck with the resolutions!!

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  15. My resolution last year was to simplify, which was a follow up to my 2013 resolution of not buying new clothes for an entire year. I'd like to think that I was able to put a giant check mark next to my simplify goal (although I must admit that I've sort of felt entitled to purchase nicer things when I do feel like they are necessary). This year, I am focusing on living Wholeheartedly, which is a concept created by Dr Brene Brown. She is fascinating and I highly suggest reading her books-- Daring Greatly is my favorite.

    Here's to a new year! Good luck on your resolutions!

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  16. Way to go you!! I made no resolutions as well, I just can't seem to keep them and at the time it seemed utterly overwhelming! Still my goal has to been to keep the happiness and enjoyment I enjoyed in the previous year going strong this year too. I feel good about it, overall. Good luck with the eczema- continuous medications or ointments are always a huge fail for me.

    www.hollandsreverie.blogspot.com

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  17. I'm looking into Lactation Consultation too!! I love nursing, I'm still nursing my 2.5 year old. I had the most amazing LC and she was such a god send, I'd love to be that for someone too. Poor Huck! Eczema sucks. If you want some advice, here's mine if not, that's cool. We each have our own views on health, mine are very holistic but not everyone's are. I highly recommend avoiding food allergies and taking lots of probiotics! A good friend of mine's son is 2 and started suffering from eczema just a few weeks after he was born. He would have open wounds the patches would get so bad. Her western doctor prescribed hydro-cortisone, which in my opinion is the devil. It only manages the condition superficially (and not every well at that), it doesn't address the root cause of the problem--the gut. She switched to a naturopath and never looked back. To address this problem correctly you must find out if there are food allergies, cut them out completely and then strengthen the gut through probiotic supplements. She found out he's allergic to eggs, dairy, soy and peanuts. Because he was an infant and only nursing she had to alter her diet, no eggs, no dairy, no soy and no nuts. She started giving him probiotic supplements and cod liver oil (but has now switched to algae because of the mercury in fish) and his skin improved 100%! She also never bathes him with soap. He is now a happy, healthy, 2 year old with not a patch of eczema on his skin! AND, here's the kicker, he is also no longer allergic to soy! Good luck, hope you find a solution that works for your family!

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  18. All of those rock, especially the simplifying/minimilising one. As a child who had dreadful eczema, and who resented the treatments as much as, if not more than, the disorder, if he's actually ok with it all there's no need to push the treatments? (I speak as the mother of 2 who understands that a child has no comprehension of what they actually need, and if he's suffering, I am so glad you are on it. My mother, who grew up with eczema in post-war Britain, when there was no unharmful effective treatment, maintained that belief. The first time I was given steroid cream as a teenager was a genuine turning point in my life; but I have now 'outgrown' it, and I hope Henry will too.) I also love the lactation consultant idea - I breastfed 2 kids to past the one-year mark, and my local breastfeeding support group got me through it with no. 1; no. 2, it was the community midwife who didn't just say 'oh, you've done it before' but listened to me when I said 'she DOES NOT WAKE UP and is not feeding enough'. Anyone who's there to help is to be applauded. And I sincerely hope there is a no. 2 baby in your future (mine took hope and time and several miscarriages) - that's my NY resolution for you and your family xxx

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  19. Eczema ... let me tell ya. My baby had it and it was a pain for her and for me. I followed the doctor route, which meant, creams that took the pigment from her skin, sleeping tablets to stop the scratching in her sleep....ugh. and then, one day, when she was around 5, I walked into the health food store (I'm Australian) and I saw a jar labelled ... Eczema Cream... why not I thought. Within 15 minutes of applying it, the redness was almost gone and it didn't itch... amazing. We just applied it every time a rash appeared, which wasn't often, and eventually that darn thing disappeared. She is 38 now and has had one bout around her eyes that I know of. From my experience, you will find the magic right where you least expect. Have a great year, I love your blog.

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  20. It completely feels like a resolutions year. This is the first year ever (that I can remember, at least) that I have been excited about resolutions. Good luck with yours! Simplifying is definitely on my list as well.

    sprucesandstones.weebly.com

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  21. My kids' eczema has been eradicated by Lush's Dream Cream. We tried everything. This stuff was magic.

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  22. GO YOU!
    mine are: 1. more and more and more yoga! 2. Use my kitchen more. for dancing. . . and cooking, I suppose. We just moved and my kitchen is aaaawwweeesooooome. Cheap, real, meals here I come! 3. We'll call it training, but I don't like that word. We're rock climbers and neeed excercise and protein, yo. 4. West Coast road trip, because I'm twenty and I can. 5. Sexual Assault Awareness in Ogden, Utah (www.walkingwithteal.com).

    Oh, New Years, you do stuff to me.

    May your 2015 be bright.

    erika wynn

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  23. Giiiiirl, everyone's going to tell you their magic cure for eczema, and their intentions are amazing and pure and lovely, but the thing about eczema is it's like snowflakes - no two are the same. No two cases are alike, and no two treatment plans will be alike. My husband and daughter both struggle - my daughter was covered head to toe for the first year a half of her life - and the only advice I will give you is this: find a dermatologist and an allergist that you desperately love. If you walk into a doctor's office and they give you a printed out sheet and say, "here's how I treat every single eczema patient and it works," walk out. It's a process for everyone. It does take time but you guys will work it out.

    Ok, I lied, here is one more piece of advice: if Huck is a sleep scratcher, like many eczema-afflicted, try using Scratch-Me-Not flip mittens at night. It keeps scratchy fingers away from raw skin, and they make up to size 6T. Lifesaver. http://www.scratchmenot.com/ They don't pay me, they are just wonderful.

    Lactation consulting! You would be so lovely at it. I hear you on the five thousand year plan, haha.

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  24. Yes on the Foreve 21 posts. I miss those. And yes on the Lactation Consult. You seem like you would be great at it. It's something that I would love to do when I'm too old for this nurse gig.

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  25. Oh, and skinny pop. That's like crack.

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  26. I love your fashion post! They are always super fun and accessible.

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  27. Aw eczema is not fun! My little one had it for TWO years before I finally figured out it was a gluten allergy!!! Ahhh I love gluten and she loved gluten, but alas, her gut did NOT like gluten. So I cut the gluten and about a month later no more rashes and we are still gluten-free two years later and still no rashes. :)

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  28. alright so i know everyone has their eczema cure and heres mine, that actually has helped lots of people i know including my family. don't use tide or any other harsh detergent when washing your clothes. you already might not and then in that case its probably a food allergy but if you do, stop now! my daughter had the worst eczema and i went to dr. after dr. and used every cream they gave me. finally someone told me to stop using tide and just like that she hasn't had any bloody scratchy eczema spots. best of luck!

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  29. Great post Natalie....number one is a beast....I have chicken marinating for tonight and I have Thursday planned and shopped for, I wish us luck

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  30. So happy that we'll have you back to posts on the little things, the big things, the Forever 21 things ( i was literally just wondering to myself if those posts would ever come back) I LOVE the Forever 21 posts because that's still my store, even though I'm 31. My friends don't even ask me where I get things from anymore, it's that bad. But, I like going in there because I know that I can afford almost anything that catches my eye. Anyway- it's nice to hear about your 2015 plans, they sound like good ones!

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  31. And also, I'm sure people tell you all kinds of crazy remedies for eczema but, look into a nightshade vegetable reaction. It's a common one believe it or not, and could be the cause of all kinds of yuckiness that peeps have to deal with. Might be worth a shot to try.

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  32. I'm so sorry about the eczema! It's hard enough to keep my 3 year old from constantly licking his lips (and then licking off the chapstick or Vaseline!).

    Also congrats on the meal planning! Back in September my best friend and I split the cost of a TON of groceries and scoured Pinterest for freezer meal recipes. It took all day, but in total we each got 18 meals (2x 9 different recipes). I'm actually still working my way through mine because finishing the meals coincided with the onset of morning/evening sickness for me and I could not eat stew or anything like that. My advice would be to go in on it with someone. Plus the prep is a lot more fun with a friend.

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  34. For the love of God---meal planning! Why is it so darn hard? You should share this! And beauty posts! Definitely beauty posts.

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  35. Cheap, healthy easy meals = slow cooker, these days you can do anything in there and all you gotta do is throw a few things in and let it do its thang

    It does feel like a year for resolutions, I haven't made any for many years and even when I did they seemed kinda unattainable from the start and were usually things that I didn't want to do but knew I should be doing. This year I decided to set goals for myself that are truly attainable and that I really want to do. Here goes:

    1. Study for my exams for my Post Graduate Degree in Education (I'm career changing at 31) well in advance so I'm not stressed come exam time
    2. Read my Bible again and find ways to make studying it interesting, meaningful and memorable
    3. Get moving more to reduce the insane amount of belly fat I have which is making me anxious about heart disease and diabetes
    4. Start a blog or in the very least start writing in a journal, I feel the need to document my life more and more for future offspring or just for myself to look back on one day
    5. Take more pictures
    6. Upload said pictures onto Facebook for friends and family back home to see (I live in China, my family and friends are in South Africa, it;s been a year and still no pictures of our life here have made it home)

    PS My brother had eczema as a kid and my mom swore by something called liquid parafin, a couple of drops in his bath every night and bam! eczema be gone!

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  36. YES YES YES!!! Forever 21 post would be welcomed back with arms wide open and a most gracious "hey natalie jean, you're awesome sauce" but really this small budget of mine would appreciate those posts. You have killer style and Forever 21 is a gold mine, waiting for just the right miner to come along (**ahem**) ;)

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  37. my baby had eczema and I switched his soap to california baby brand at target and away it went. hope its something easy like that for huck.

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  38. Was just at forever 21 and wishing I had some direction from you there! What to buy? What not to buy? I had no time to wander but needed something new. WWNbuy and all that! Bottom line, yes please on bringing back forever 21 posts and linking us all up!

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