Thursday, January 5, 2012

this week's adventures in motherhood: birthday resolutions

I turned 31 on Monday. I used to think that being in my early thirties would be unbelievably depressing because there was no way that I would accomplish everything I wanted to by then and, let's be honest, it's no longer cute to be "finding yourself" when you have obvious crow's feet.

(See them? Yikes!)

Having L has made my transition into full-blown, can't-pretend-about-it-anymore adulthood a lot easier to bear. And I'm already starting to realize how much she is changing me for the better. In previous years, I would never have been happy with the totally low-key birthday I had this year and was always bummed that people were too busy getting back to work the day after New Year's to do much celebrating with me. But this year? LOVED it. A few extra minutes in bed, snuggles with L, Indian food for dinner, and even getting to make my own birthday cake (which sounds terrible, but spending the afternoon baking was just what I wanted to do!) while my husband watched our daughter play in her new Jumperoo.

(poke and pour ginger cake recipe can be found here -- it is to DIE for!)

So one of my birthday resolutions (I call them that rather than New Year's resolutions -- I know, silly, but it matters to me somehow) is already accomplished (or at least I'm making pretty good progress towards it!). Take that, 2012!

1. Learn how to embrace the beauty and wonder of today rather than wishing it would hurry up and be tomorrow or somehow get back to what it was like yesterday. (okay, I can't really cross this off yet, but that felt soooo good.)

2. Start my Etsy shop. For reals this time. This means making a list of all of the minutiae that have been holding me back and then working my way through them -- and writing about it here to keep myself honest.

3. Figure out what in the world to do about whether I am going back to work next fall. (This might be a little bit of an unfair resolution, as I'm required to do this by February whether I like it or not -- but, again, crossing things off a list is so cathartic!)

4. Write a letter to my grandmother every week. She doesn't have a lot to look forward to each day due to her struggles with Lewy Body Dementia and she used to send me the most wonderful letters and packages so I want to return the favor while I still can.

5. Learn how to use my brand new DSLR so my blog looks the way I want it to. (Have I mentioned that my husband is super dreamy? Thanks for the best present ever, J!)

6. Purge our house of all of the things we don't need. Just like with #2, this is going to require a lot of smaller steps first, but I am determined to get it done.

7. Go on a trip with L that isn't just to our parents' houses. And go on a trip without L. (gulp!)

8. Make some meaningful connections in my small town and in the blogosphere.

9. Have a lot more moments like these.

10. ??? What else do I need to be working on in my life? Keep me honest and let me know!


  1. This past September I turned 33 and FINALLY came to terms with the fact that I was in my 30's, like it or not! I love the list of things to do and I should probably be working on my own! Happy Birthday!

    Also, your daughter is adorable!

  2. Girl, those aren't crows feet. They're awesome laugh lines. :)

  3. Oh, and I'm so with you on #6. Our goodwill pile is looking CRAZY right now.

  4. I'll be 36 this year, and I think it's totally fine to still be finding yourself well into your 30s and beyond. I hope to never stop learning and growing, no matter how old I am. Although, it's true that I am increasingly forced to admit that I'll probably never make it to the Olympics. ;)

  5. Aww, thanks for the support, ladies. You're right: I should call them laugh lines!

  6. Happy Birthday! I hope B. and I will be able to split the cost of a DSLR for a joined anniversary present this year... our old little digital camera just isn't doing it for us anymore.

  7. You're 31 years young - still young enough to dream and try new things!! My mom is such a great teacher of this philosophy to me, her daughter who wants to know everything now and have things turn out just the way I imagine them to NOW. She was 35 when I was born, and is still learning new things about film editing and production at age 60. She decides she wants to learn it, and then goes and learns it!

    All that said, the world is your oyster. And blogging is such a great way to find those dreams and learn how to make them your reality. Keep it up! And love the post by the way!

  8. Love the goals! I'm glad you had a wonderful birthday!

    And your daughter is just simply precious :)

  9. So glad you had a fabulous birthday! I am all about the low key celebrations--baking, sleeping, and Indian food sounds perfect!

  10. If I could add one thing to your list for #10 it would be for you to embrace the beauty that YOU possess!

    You are such a beautiful, accomplished young woman. Getting down on yourself about something as little as crows feet seems silly compared the beauty in you and your life!

  11. Thanks Sara -- that's exactly what resolution #1 is about, and I feel like I'm totally on my way there! I'm loving who I am and where I am with life at the moment -- such a nice feeling :)

  12. Great pictures and happy belated birthday!! I felt the same way about turning 30 (then 31, 32...) but you're right, having a little one really gives life a new meaning and purpose.

    Good luck on your birthday resolutions! I seem to make really huge ones that never happen, so maybe making smaller, attainable ones will make me feel more accomplished. :)

  13. Such a great post. Happy Birthday to you! I like the idea of making resolutions for birthdays. And I love the list you've compiled. I can echo the "learn to use my DSLR" resolution for my own life. Oi veh, it's certainly a process! :) Thanks for sharing!! xoxo