Tuesday, January 7, 2014


Making a list of everything I would like to change or improve could take all of 2014. There's so much in my always-evolving notebook of thoughts. Some items appear repeatedly. Life goals - volunteer more, be a better wife/friend/sister/daughter/human being and to stop procrastinating on deadlines are always at the top.

But then there are finer points dealing with getting messy areas in order. That includes not only neglected corners of my home/life, but extends to time management and setting limitations. That's right, one of my big goals this year is to start saying NO to committees, requests, meetings or personal asks that really don't have my heart (or someone's I am close to). I want to devote myself to the causes, people and things most important to me and stop spreading myself so thin that I can't be truly effective at anything. I'm hoping to stick to it (at least just a little).

Having fresh flowers in the house lifts my spirit.  I visit the fantastic Import Flowers at least once a week.


Luckily, I have a head start on health and fitness. I went through a complete change late summer after leaving a full time office situation and have never felt better. I shed a couple of pounds, committed to (and continue) a 4 day per week training workout and completely overhauled my kitchen... and what I put into my body. In winter when we're stuck inside, there's always temptation... and even raw almonds have 900 calories a cup.. yikes! The key is to feel enticed, satisfied and entertained by food.

In recipes, I don't just look to diet, vegan or vegetarian titles. I love to experiment. Using cauliflower in place of whipped potatoes, spaghetti squash instead of pasta, big slices of jimica as taco shells and chunky grated vegetables in place of meat for gourmet sauces are just a few strategies. Check out my posts under the FOOD category and you will find several staples. A goal for me is to continue to experiment and to not regress.

The most effective practice I've found that keeps hunger and boredom at bay is always spicing things up. Adding jalepeno (I pickle my own), ginger, turmeric, cinnamon and other bold flavors makes a huge difference in both metabolism and enjoying every bite. Food is one of the true joys of life, and there's no way I'm going to consume something that doesn't taste great. The goal is to keep that in mind no matter what the situation.

I now whip up all of my own condiments, our house favorite is pickled jalepeno peppers from last season's harvest.
I really do find joy in the entire process of this type of thing, and the spices help on the 'body' topic.


Since leaving a typical office situation, I've been a bit scattered. Most of that ties to the fact that for the first time in 15 years, I am operating solo (as in no assistant, design team or creative coworkers). It's been an adjustment, but I am finally getting into a groove. A big factor is time with some of my most talented and idea-centric friends. I've loved not only having true, uninterrupted conversations, but learning about fresh topics. So, a goal for 2014 is to do more of just that.

For me being happy means being organized and on top of my schedule, tasks and household. Staying 'caught up' isn't easy, but it's something that truly helps in the long run. Every day I am going to make an effort to finish what I start to feel more calm and accomplished. 

I also want to be completely in the moment with whatever I am doing, and that's a tough one. Instead of ways to save time, I want to relish time-consuming activities like making a wonderful dinner, planting my own herbs or taking a road trip.

Definitely want to soak up more sunsets with Tim in places like this (Isle De France, St. Barths)


I want to feel less tied down, more free from devices. Don't we all? For me that means more travel, as so much inspiration comes from realizing just how small my personal world really is. I want to not only experience beautiful locales, but to visit friends in random places that I haven't made time for in the past. 

It also includes reading and following more blogs (check out my expanding blog roll for lots of new adds). Making this a part of my daily/weekly routine will certainly add to my level of overall satisfaction. I always discover so much -- from recipes and entertaining to the next trip to book from genuine people based on their journey. Reading more is always a goal in general, but the personal posts are what I want to read most now.

I also want to learn more about the path involving a cleaner life. From how to do my part in serving the environment to truly supporting those devoted to sustainable farming practices. This kind of thing really makes me feel fantastic, so I want to make it a focus and to educate myself more each day.

Whatever your goals, I hope that you reach them and that you continue to follow and share...