The New Year is a time of reflection. Last year I wrote this post and, in summary, really wanted 2016 to be about living an authentic, creative life. It was a year about my mind as much as it was about my body. (We all know the drill come January 1st… More toned, less flab. More greens, less booze.)

As with every year, I’ve learned a ton about myself. I’ve grown. I’ve made mistakes. I’ve vowed to do better only to mess up the same way the very next day. I’ve forgiven myself. I’ve been both easy and hard on myself. Some insecurities have been squashed and others have deepened. I’ve traveled, cried, laughed, and danced. A few relationships have been tested but, thankfully, they have passed the trails. Overall, I think this year has been more of an evolution than anything else…

Towards the end of the year, I started to feel more “nestled” into myself. I started to recognize a lot of things that make me who I am. Some of these things I love. Others need a bit of rewiring and tweaking before I am happy.

For example, I’ve learned that I have a hard time saying “no.” I have a tendency to shy away from transparency. Even if I know I don’t want to do something, it’s not my first inclination to say so. For whatever reason, I feel like I owe an explanation for not wanting to partake. This is frustrating for both me and people I make plans with because as soon as I commit to something I don’t actually want to do, I feel anxiety about it (not good for me) and then, inevitably, end up canceling or flaking (not good for my people).

In 2017 I want to be more true to myself. It will take a lot of reminding, but I know that it is reason enough to say “thanks but no thanks!” simply because it’s not what I feel like doing. Life is just too freakin’ short to dole out time because of “duty” and obligation. (This is all within reason, of course. Birthdays, special life events, etc. still require showing up!)

This year, I also want to concentrate on and – most importantly, enjoy – the journey! Far too often, I’m more occupied with the destination. The end goal. The timeline and the lists and the mental clutter that consume my mind. For example, Mike’s family is still in town and yesterday we came home from a weekend away in Santa Rosa. As with all vacations, the bags, laundry, and general To Dos were piled up when we arrived back at our house. In typical fashion, I was unpacking and frazzled the second we walked in the door.

While I was organizing my refrigerator, everyone in the family decided to go for a walk. At first I declined to join, thinking of all of the things that still had to be done! As Mike kissed me goodbye, he told me to call him if I changed my mind. And what do you know? midway through cleaning the bathroom counters (because yes, I get distracted with other chores as I’m putting stuff away), I was like, what am I doing? All of these To Dos will still be here after a family walk. So, I called Mike and met everyone midway through their walk.

Merging into another family is hard work (especially if you have a mind like mine) but that’s the journey. It’s what is happening right now and it’s important to me to be present for it. One day Mike and I will be married and we could label it as “the detestation” but it won’t be. Not really. We have these marks on our life maps – like marriage and babies and new jobs – but they are just that; markers on the path. They do signify important events on the journey but they are as much as the destination as the next one.

My point is, I’m learning that the momentum – the daily push and thrust forward in time getting us to the next moment – is as important as the milestone itself.

So this year, I want to focus on the now. The momentum. The little things we sprinkle our lives with in-between the big moments. Like having a cup of coffee or really savoring those first few sips of wine. Or splurging for the expense chocolate and having a bit each day. Taking the long way. Walking.

Fully submerging myself in whatever the weather currently is and being really happy about it. Raining cats and dogs? I want to cozy up with a good book and my softest blanket. Hot as hell? I’ll be grabbing a glass of bubbly water with lime and sitting outside in the shade of a tree.

I want to be present. Cook often. Stretch everyday. Bring brightness to the world.

And love. Love, love, love, love, love.

** Note this blog went through a rebrand and is now veg vibes; which aligns better with the direction I organically gravitated towards. It’s all about your vibe **

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