Reflecting on 2015
Babying my baby boy



Hello 2016, come on in and make yourself right at home!

I love to greet a new year and after the intensity and sleepless nights in 2015 I am even more eager to jump into 2016. The boys are at great ages and I already feel a shift happening in our lives from a "someone always needs something right now!" phase of parenting to "hey I think we can handle this (most of the time)!" phase of parenting. And we are hopeful that soon we'll have two boys sleeping through the night consistently (even if they wake up in the 5 am hour...) which feels like a game-changer.

Chris will be on sabbatical during the fall which should have a relaxing effect on our whole family (since he won't have the usual teaching and meeting demands). Plus sometime in the next few months I will finish nursing Cedric and will end three and a half years of continuous pregnancy and/or breastfeeding (I can't believe it)!

Which brings me right to my theme of 2016: The Year of Kelsey.

It's a little cheeky but I am serious about earmarking time and money to invest in myself. I recognize that I do a lot and pour myself into parenting and working and maintaining relationships, all happily so, but I have a sense that investment in myself will go a long way to being able to continue to bring so much energy to my relationships and endeavors. 

I've been looking forward to some of my 2016 goals for a while knowing that 2015 wouldn't allow for much outside of just trying to find routine. And so I'm happy to share what I'm planning to accomplish in 2016 for The Year of Kelsey and otherwise:

+ Create a capsule wardrobe of quality, timeless pieces.

I've been thinking about this since I was rotundly pregnant and very far away from being able to fit into a wardrobe that would fit me for years. Our endeavors in simplifying plus the fact that I really don't enjoy shopping for and thinking about clothes have me eager to work on this. I'll share more about how I plan to create my capsule wardrobe soon which includes trying out Stitch Fix!

+ Create a capsule skin care and make-up routine.

At 32 it's time to get really serious about taking care of my skin, including sunscreen (we get 300 sunny days a year here!). I want to find quality products and a simple routine that make my skin feel great. And then I want to not have to make decisions about skin care and make up for a while because, like shopping for clothes, it's not a place where I want to spend much energy. As I do some research and make decisions about the products I will buy I'll be sure to share, and I'd love to hear your tips! I'm particularly interested in products that are cruelty-free.

+ Go on at least three creative field trips.

I first heard of the concept of creative field trips through Elise's podcast and I love the idea. I firmly believe you must fuel your creativity and that's what these field trips will be for. One might be to see a museum exhibit, or to go somewhere interesting and write. I'm not sure yet what I'll do but I know that the point will be the experience and not necessarily producing anything at the time.

+ Take a solo trip.

About half way through 2015 I started to look forward to the end of pumping and as an encouragement decided that I would treat myself to a solo vacation of at least two nights once I finished nursing completely. Since July 2012 I have been continuously pregnant and/or breastfeeding and when this chapter of my life is finished I want to set aside time to celebrate everything my body has gone through and entering the post-baby mothering years.

+ By the end of the year, eat dinner all together at the table more often than not.

Currently we do eat dinner together each night, but it's gathered around the kitchen island and rarely at the dining room table. As the boys get older I'd like to shift our dinners to the table.

+ Save $20,000 in an investment account towards paying off our mortgage.

In 2015 Chris and I set a goal of saving $100,000 in an investment account over the next five years with the goal of paying off our mortgage and giving ourselves significant financial flexibility. We achieved our goal of saving $20,000 in 2015 and we hope to do the same in 2016. We have potential travel plans that might challenge our savings goal but I think the mark of a good savings goal is that it should hurt at least a little bit so we're going for it.

HAPPY 2016, friends! I'd love to hear what you're planning for 2016.