I really feel like goals are only as good as follow-through. So making resolutions and never talking or thinking about them again isn’t the best way to really move the needle.
For the past 5 years, I’ve posted goals every single month. And I liked that, but it felt forced.
So I’m mixing it up this year. I’ll still be talking about my goal to be kind – but I’ll also be sharing the good things that happen during the month, stuff I’ve loved and how I’m focusing on kindness. My plan is to do this at the end of each month. Really, this is just intended to be a modge-podge of what’s going on in my life.
January highlights …
This month has been full of game-playing, movie-watching and crafting. Plus, lots of progress on the house. So, a pretty good month overall. Here’s a few of my favorite posts this month:
Here’s what I’ve realized about kindness in myself – I’m actually way more kind to people in the periphery. It’s easy to be kind to the server at a restaurant or to the acquaintance you see at the store or a mom of Henry’s classmate.
My problem? Being kind to the people in my life who I see every single day. Because it’s easier to let my guard down. Because I know they’ll love me anyway.
In January, I tried my best to focus on kindness, especially toward Ryan and Henry. But when I messed up, got stressed out or upset, I also had to allow myself a little grace. I’m stubborn and I have a temper. These things take time.
Henry and I have been finding our groove in this tiny space in the middle of winter. I’ve found that being more patient and kind to my 3-year-old means he also responds kindly. We just both get along better when I’m focusing on kindness.
For Ryan, I’ve focused on curbing spending and making meals at home for us. This may not seem like “kindness,” but they are things that he cares about and things I don’t always do well.
I’ve also really been trying to nurture friendships and carve out time for friends I haven’t stayed in touch with. This has really recharged my battery and feels good.
I’m going to begin sharing books read each month. Partially because I love to see what books people love and partially because I think reading actually does make me a less vile person – thus leading to my goal of kindness. Maybe it’s convoluted. Find my full reviews on Goodreads. And the links above to the books are affiliate links on Amazon, in case you want to get any of the books I’ve read.
- Son (The Giver Quartet) by Lois Lowry (review on Goodreads)
- The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon (review on Goodreads)
- Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarity (review on Goodreads)
- Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult (review on Goodreads)
- The One by Kierra Cass (review on Goodreads)
- The Elite by Kierra Cass (review on Goodreads)
I’ve begun to listen to more podcasts and finding it really helps my brain feel less like mush than when I listen to the same four songs played on the radio. As I’m still relatively new to the world of podcasts, I thought I’d share some of my favorites during the month.
- Serial Season 2 – the new season is totally different than season one, but I’ve already been pulled in and have been interested.
- This American Life #545: If you don’t have anything nice to say, SAY IT IN ALL CAPS – This episode is a must-listen for anyone who blogs or works in social media for a living. The stories were all about what happens “when the Internet turns on you.”
- StoryCorps #453: Do-Over: Every single episode of StoryCorps has me in deep, cleansing tears. Like, good tears. But but I loved this episode most of all this month – all about wiping the slate clean and starting over.
- Reply All #50: The Cathedral: This book pretty much had me crying ugly tears for the full hour – the story of a one-year-old son diagnosed with cancer and how the family created a multimedia experience of the experience to process their grief and leave a legacy.
When it comes to kindness, I want to be the person who encourages and uplifts the talents of others. Here are a few things I’ve really been inspired by this month …
- Beautiful master bathroom remodel at Imperfect
- Lovely green and pink eclectic girl nursery at Welcome to Heardmont
- Handpainted sign at That’s My Letter
- Play party stands at Brooklyn Limestone (also created by That’s My Letter)
A few things that helped us make it through January with a smile:
- Hungry Hungry Hippos (This has definitely been a great and easy game for us to play when we are stuck inside.)
- Wooden Wonders Doctor Play Kit (This was a Christmas gift from Henry’s great-aunt and it’s Henry’s new favorite activity. Daily checkups everyone in the household)
- Davines Hair Refresher (The fact that I only wash my hair once a week is completely a reason to celebrate. This stuff is magic.)
- Fabric braided phone charger (If your chargers are always fraying or breaking, this is the perfect option. It is super durable and holds up to daily use. It’s also strangely pretty, as a bonus.)
Next month …
Next month, there’s lots to look forward to –
- Valentine’s Day (with Henry’s first classroom party).
- Our annual trip to visit my parents in Arizona.
- More house progress and closer to move-in.
I want to continue to focus on kindness to those closest to me – particularly working on my patience and putting aside the to-do list to spend quality time with my family.