I welcome the new year whole heartedly. I often feel ambivalent about new years and the concentration of attention on resolutions and change. However, this year, I find myself embracing the opportunity to implement some changes, updates, and upgrades into my life.

2014 was a fairly good year. We did a little traveling – I finally saw the spectacular beauty of the Grand Canyon, spent a lot of quality time with friends and family, did a few impactful updates to the house that have made it a space where we enjoy our downtime, as well as entertaining friends and family, overall the work year was solid, and Cole has grown in ways that still surprise us – his new found desire to spend time alone in his room in typical teen fashion…wow!

With the advent of the new year, I have the urge to continue to become healthier. Thus far, that includes the purchase of an under the desk elliptical machine, as well as a standing desk so that my normally sedentary work day can become a more challenging to me physically.

I’m also keen to explore some new recipes to add grains and more fruits and veggies to my diet, and eliminate some of the processed products as well as sugar. Sugar seems to be the evil element as we age, not only internally, but it also ages our skin more rapidly. I still have weight to lose (managed to lose and keep off 23 pounds in 2014…hoping for more of the same in 2015), but overall wellness is my main reason for updating the meal plans. I can feel the difference in my body, well being and energy when I’m eating cleaner, and leaner. My immune system is stronger and my moods more stable.

Having a living, breathing backyard garden is something that will help with that. We built some raised beds last year but have yet to fill them with soil so we can start planting. 2015 promises to be the year of getting our gardening on. We’ve grown veggies in pots and various spaces in our yard over the years and have been inspired by our homegrown crops to create wonderful meals from our produce. To be able to have a seasonal selection of crops to be inspired by is a dream. And the idea of tending to and nurturing them strikes me as a wonderful way to relax and spend a little time outside (I’m in an office all days with minimal outside exposure during the week).

I’m also looking forward to experiencing Cole growing. He seems to be in a physical period of growth at the moment. The last couple of weeks of 2014 have had him sleeping a lot more than usual and also a bit grouchier. Both signs of physical growth. I’m interested to see how he expands on his independence and to see how his interests grow this year.

Of course there are countless other upgrades that I hope to make practice of – being better organized, being more thoughtful and kinder (especially to my husband who has the unfortunate brunt of my moods whether he deserves it or not – most often not), reading more, revitalizing my French (we intend to take Cole to Paris for his 8th grade graduation), writing more, being braver about putting myself out there (where exactly there is, I’m not sure, but I know I’m not there, yet)…

I am entering 2015 with optimism, hope and an overall sense that the year will be meaningful. To me, that includes some real change and overhaul.

I wish health, happiness, and hope to everyone in 2015. And a good dose of love. It makes everything feel that much more attainable. Happy New Year’s!

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