Hello friends! Welcome to the first edition of Fridays with Ann Marie. My hope is that this series will become a regular one where I share some things that are a little more personal to me.
Last year when I first launched Monograms & Pearls, I accepted a challenge from a dear friend to outline 18 things I’d like to accomplish in 2018. I remember I agonized over my list. I even updated it three times after I posted it. And to be honest, after all of that work, I didn’t even look at it again until this same friend and I got together over the holidays and talked about doing our 19 for 2019. I was so ashamed to realize that I barely accomplished half of what I set out to do.
So this crazy list making got me thinking about what my overall “word” for 2019 was going to be…I always love all of the January conversations about what people’s words will be. Last year, my word was “momentum” and I think I may have overshot the mark a bit with this one. To have momentum, it assumes that you are moving forward, right? In reality, I feel like I spent most of last year frozen. I had too many firsts come my way that I wasn’t quite sure how to handle…a sick mom, a daughter leaving for college, and a career that wasn’t moving quite in the direction I was hoping. My word should have been “stuck.”
Yet the amazing thing about the beginning of a new year, a new week, or even a new day is that we are lucky and blessed enough to have the chance to start over with a fresh slate and turn the page on a blah chapter. I woke up on January 1 and set my intention that 2019 will be different.
This year, I’m setting the bar at a little more accessible level by choosing the word “focus.” I think if I can keep my eye on the prize on the year ahead, great things will happen.
So before I share my 19 for 2019…I did make a list, my guru (and by guru I mean my incredible 18-year-old daughter Grace), I’m also toying with the idea of having a theme each month for my blog…at least for sure in the short term. This will help me keep a “focus” on my writing. For the remaining days in January, I’m going to undergo a “reboot” in all things: how I eat, what I wear, my skincare routine, my workout, what I’m reading, how I get ready for a trip, my faith life…you name it. This is “reboot” January (my theme) and I’m lifting up the hood on this 48-year-old self and planning to share what I find with you every step of the way.
On that note, let’s get started. Here are my 19 for 2019:
- Do at least one selfless act each day.
- Set aside a few minutes every day with each member of my immediate family.
- Plan one getaway with the hubby.
- Plan a girls’ weekend with my mom and sisters.
- Meet all deadlines!
- Work on Monograms & Pearls (in some capacity) every day.
- Learn how to really use my camera.
- Lose 10 pounds.
- Walk 10,000 steps every day.
- Join a book club.
- Spend quality time with at least one friend each week.
- Learn how to do a handstand in yoga.
- Place one story in a national magazine.
- Freshen up the upstairs’ rooms of our home.
- Make the basement a better hangout for our kids and their friends.
- Run the Chicago Marathon in 4:45 (or less!).
- Double the number of my followers on Instagram.
- Start and end each day with gratitude.
- Remember that it’s about progress, not perfection.
Okay, there it is! I’d love to know if you have such a list or a word for 2019. I find that there’s strength in numbers when it comes to these things and so much more.