I was inspired (as always!) by the positivity of Layla at The Lettered Cottage, with her recent post about choosing a "Word of the Year". As you know, I don't really "do" resolutions. But to look forward on the new year ahead as a way to recharge and rethink things a bit - now that, I do. :-)
As some of you may have noticed on one of my very rare Facebook posts recently (sometimes it's the only way to connect to the most people, whatchya gonna do?), we've got some exciting news in our humble little house. So, when looking forward to the year ahead, how could my "word of the year" NOT be...
Yep. I'd say that accurately describes what's to come in 2012. There are a few reasons that "life" just works for us this year, but the most important is the fact that we're bringing new life into the world this year. More specifically, early July (if all goes according to plan...and how often does THAT happen?).
I could have gone all one-track-mind and said that "baby" should be the 2012 word of the year, but for over half of the year, there won't be a baby in sight. (On the brain, sure. In sight? Nope.) Plus, I'm sure that, although the little one will be our "big news" (and the biggest CHANGE) this year, there will be other interesting occurrences that will definitely be a part of our "life". In a way, I'm sure the word "change" would have been an appropriate choice, as well.
Every cliche quotation or saying that uses the word "life" seems to be relevant. I've heard so very many times that "life begins when you have a child". As the joy of parenthood hits both of us, "life is beautiful" rings true. So, sure, all that's to be expected...and is making 2012 out to be the most important year of our lives so far.
But, there are a few other aspects of "life" that we're hoping to focus on this year, in addition to "the addition" - a lot of it is to make life happier FOR the little one.
One life change that we're already working on, big-time, is simplification. Life around this place has been pretty cluttered, especially when it comes to our clothes situation. That whole "you only wear 20% of your wardrobe" (or 10%, depending on what you read) seriously rings true. While we're not donating or selling 80% or 90% of our clothes (and accessories), I'm aiming for closer to 50% for my own belongings. We've currently got a pile growing in our upstairs hallway, which is daunting, but I'm hoping will feel therapeutic and uplifting to be rid of.
Our closet situation includes one in our office, one in our bedroom, and one in our guest room (soon to be nursery). Dave was using both the bedroom and office closets and I used the guest room closet, mostly because he wears lots more suits to work and has lots of other items to store that wouldn't fare well in the basement. He also has two small dressers in our room; I have a large one in the guest room, which we're finally paring down and moving into our room. It'll be a big game of "musical dressers", but I'm inspired that Dave already worked on emptying one of the dressers. We're gettin' there!
Oh, and we even did a big haul-and-donate from, of all places, our built-in area. I'm sure I'll be posting about the "after" of this space, but I've just got to share how ecstatic I was to be able to find a way to dispose of the unopened health and beauty products that I don't use (the non-environmentally friendly ones that I had stocked up on awhile back). Dave dropped off a box of items to Evelyn's House, which provides housing, education and care for mothers and babies who have become homeless. Seriously, I cried reading about the place - although it's pretty easy to get me sobbing over truly meaningful subjects lately. Hormones!
Along with simplifying how much stuff we have, we're adding organization solutions and will try to utilize the space we have better. I'm excited to set up an organizer in our basement (which Dave is in the midst of cleaning/Dryloking/painting!) that will give us at least another closet of organization. And while we hear that babies accumulate lots of stuff (let's rephrase that: when babies COME, stuff SEEMS to accumulate), our requests for baby items will be well-thought and with need and space in mind. We're already appreciative of whatever we'll receive, but hope that folks can keep these things in mind, as well. :-)
I'm hoping that 2012 will bring with it some inspiration and clarification as to some of the big questions in our lives, helping us to truly live life to the fullest and not take things for granted. We also hope to maintain balance in our lives in order to give our child (and future children) the best experiences that we can.
I know this post seems a bit vague in some areas, but when the future brings some unknowns, it can be a bit anxiety-invoking. Ultimately, the biggest philosophy I need to remember is that this is where life begins...everyday...and it's up to us to do with it what we deem possible and necessary. While thinking about "life" everyday could be daunting, I find it a reminder not to sweat the small problems and to truly enjoy the (small and large) good. Thanks for coming along for the ride!