2014 was a big year for our little family. A couple weeks in, our baby officially became a toddler, which brought a whole new set of challenges and joys to our experience as parents. A few months later we bought our first home and moved from a neighborhood that we’d known and loved for nearly seven years to one about which we felt positive but uncertain. There was a lot of work to be done during those first couple months in our new place and an adjustment period as we settled in and explored the neighborhood. I also attended my second market as a vendor with my Babywares, completed my largest custom order to date, and then decided to set B&R on the back burner for a while. As the summer wound down, I finally made the long-considered decision to close one chapter and begin writing a new one when I launched this blog. It was a year of many changes, lots of kicking up dirt and waiting for the dust to settle.
As we go into 2015, we know we have a lot ahead of us again—some big decisions, potential changes—but our footing feels stable. We’ve fallen in love with our neighborhood, there is artwork on the walls of our home, and our sweet little boy will soon turn two.
In the spirit of reflecting and looking ahead, I’ve been thinking lately about a few things that I’d like to do or start doing again in the coming year. Most of these things have been on my “list” for a while now, and I’ve no doubt they’ll require a bit of extra thought and planning, but I’m hoping that the calendar reset can be a springboard for me. And since I know that I’ll need to work towards these things, I’m thinking of them more as goals than resolutions. It’s all about progress.
Here is some of the progress I’m hoping to make in 2015:
- Read more books about veganism and plant-based nutrition.
I love information. I love learning new things, understanding old things more deeply, and challenging my thoughts and opinions. This is actually how I became vegan; I learned new information that challenged my old beliefs, weighed and attempted to form arguments against that new information, learning even more in the process, and ultimately leading to a well-considered decision to change my lifestyle.In making this change, I realized there was a wealth of information that I simply didn’t know and a shocking amount of misinformation that I’d always accepted. I became hungry to learn even more and have accumulated a pretty decent knowledge base over the past few years. But I don’t know everything. So, one of my goals for the next year, and really the future in general, is to delve into more of the literature on both plant-based nutrition and veganism.
- Watch more documentaries.
This is very much related to my goal to read more in that I hope to learn new things and deepen and challenge the knowledge that I already have. It’s one thing to know information and understand the how’s and why’s by way of words, but it’s another thing entirely to see. And I’m not just referring to shocking slaughterhouse footage. Listening to someone tell their story, seeing their face as they do, is a whole different experience from reading it on paper. Film allows us to connect in a poignant, visual way to places, people, and narratives that we might otherwise find ourselves very removed from. I want to see more.
- Get back to bulk cooking.
I used to have this really slick system in place that would allow me to prep a week’s worth of meals (sometimes more) in about the same total time that it might take me to prepare a fairly complicated meal one night. It took some planning and organization beforehand, but the result was totally worth it. I know that getting back to this will save me a lot of stress, cut our grocery budget, keep us from having to resort to takeout, and give me more late afternoon/pre-dinner time to spend with Roman. Once I get back into the swing of it, I’ll be sure to share my method and tips here.
- Return to a regular yoga practice.
Before I became pregnant with Roman, I had a daily yoga practice that I absolutely loved. I found so many benefits in yoga—physical flexibility and strength, yes, but the practice also helped to quiet my constantly buzzing head and made it easier for me to deal with challenges, adapt to sudden change, be present in the moment, and see things in a larger context outside of myself. It made life easier and made me a calmer, better version of myself. It’s not realistic to think that I’ll be able to resume a daily studio practice any time soon, but I know that even a two or three classes a week will have significant benefits.
- Take more time for myself.
One morning a couple weeks ago we found ourselves out of coffee, so I ran out to grab some from a local café while Chris stayed home with Roman. I felt the swift movement of my legs as I crossed the street, a lightness as I hopped over the curb on the other side, and I realized that it had been too long since I’d been out of the house by myself, sans stroller or dog. Going to yoga will certainly help in this area, but I’d like to find other ways to sneak in some solo time as well—even if that just means stepping out to snag a cup of coffee.
So that’s my short list for 2015. Do you have any goals or resolutions for the coming year?