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in december…

November turned out to be a relaxed, alarm-clock-less month, starting with eight days in the Florida sunshine and ending with two weeks of downtime. I enjoyed every second of it – quiet mornings at home drinking pots of tea, working out at noon, catching up with friends, mornings minus the crazy commute and straight up just reveling zero adult responsibility (you know… working, showering daily, brushing your teeth).

Amid the restfulness, my November goals panned out like this…

#joblove. Finally. I start my new gig on Monday. (And, that’s all I’ll say here.)

Media free day. Well, I’m sad to say that other than an hour or two here and an hour or two there, this never really happened. Why, oh why, is it so difficult to disconnect for a measly hour?!

One thing. While I didn’t write down what I was grateful for all 30 days, 1THING was an great reminder of the little things I’m grateful for… laughter, quiet time, community, home, morning trail runs, honesty, patience and authenticity. Recording my gratitude daily will continue indefinitely – and may even appear on twitter every evening.

Sleep more. November nights were blissfully long, and I’m more rested than I have been in a long time. An adequate amount of sleep each night makes all the difference in my energy levels, daily food intake and mood. Now, I just need a new pillow…

Kombucha creations. I had every intention of brewing my own ‘bucha this past week, but thanks to feeling a little under the weather, I wasn’t able to pick up my SCOBY from Dave.

Read more, cont. Unfortunately, the second half of Brené Brown’s Daring Greatly hasn’t seen light of day – too antsy to sit down and read something heavier this month – but I did enjoy The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff (Winnie the Pooh is wise) and Paul Arden’s Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite (his way of thinking… YES).

Slow down + focus. Through constant self reminders, I’m becoming more aware of my attention span. While I’m still bouncing between tasks, I’m staying focused on each one a little bit longer each time. I’ll take it, even if it’s just in increments.

No more processed + portion control. Our table has been full of fresh produce + homemade goodness this month! A few favorites: roasted beets (from my parents’ garden!), roasted Brussels sprouts, chicken butternut squash spinach quinoa stew (recipe soon!) and roasted red pepper (I had no idea this could be done) goat cheese alfredo. Y.U.M.

So, December… back to reality! Here’s what’s twinkling…

Read more, cont. The second half of Daring Greatly is already underway. Also this month: Iron War by Matt Fitzgerald.

Getting crafty. Maybe it’s the cooler temps, Jessica’s fabulous Prime & Polish pop-up shop, or because my sister is pregnant (so excited to be an aunt!), but something in November inspired me to dust off the paint brush and sewing machine. I have some really cool projects lined up, and I can’t wait to share them with you come January.

Flexibility. For as regularly as I practice yoga, you’d think I’d be quite bendy. Turns out, I often have trouble touching my toes. Nothing a little legs up the wall, five to 10 minutes a day, can’t help.

Simplify + say no. Between holiday parties, Christmas gift shopping and catching up with everyone you know, December is a hectic month. While I love all its sparkle, it also stresses me out. So, this year, I’m simplifying by making gifts or purchasing local. And, to further de-stress, I’m learning it’s ok to occasionally say no… to holiday happy hours, dinner out every single weekend night and to activities I just don’t want to do.

Media free day. Let’s try this again.

Kombucha creations. Let’s try this again, too.

Sun salutations. In addition to two or three yoga classes at CorePower a week, there will be at least 10 sun salutations to ocean waves, every single day. Centering and calming. Bliss.

Explore the city. Can you believe I’ve lived in MSP for 4.5 years and have yet to go to the Holidazzle parade or the Minneapolis Institute of Arts? Yeah, me neither. So, Nick and I will be doing both this month… can’t wait to see China’s Terracotta Warriors exhibit!

How about you? What are you goals this month? How do you stay sane amidst all the holiday craziness? Any other places I should explore? What books should I be reading?

12 Comments Post a comment
  1. My goals really revolve around something similar to your “Simplify + Say No” goal. I want to get through this hectic month with minimal stress 🙂 I have a feeling that all of my other goals will stem from that!

    December 1, 2012
    • Start with that, and everything else falls into place 🙂 Hope your December’s filled with stress-free holiday cheer!

      December 3, 2012
  2. Can’t wait to see what you are sewing+crafting!! 🙂 I, too, have not been to the Holidazzle Parade, but we plan to go this year too!

    Also, I have a Kombucha bottle for you to add to your collection when you are ready to make yours..

    December 1, 2012
    • Maybe the four of us should hit the Holidazzle together! New tradition?

      Picking up my ‘bucha starter tomorrow!

      December 3, 2012
  3. This is just what I needed to read on this cold, rainy, Saturday afternoon.

    I am stoked for a new month and a new year.

    Erin, like you, I want to get better at saying “no” this holiday season to things that I don’t want to do while making more time to unplug and focus on the things that enrich my life aka yoga, walks with friends, home-cooked food goodness, and creative endeavors like more writing and painting.

    I love that you are making and purchasing local gifts this christmas.

    Have a good weekend girly and congrats on the new job!

    December 1, 2012
    • Your December sounds PERFECT. I would love to see what you’re painting!

      Thank you, lovely! It was a good first day 🙂 Hope you had a fab weekend!

      December 3, 2012
  4. I was wondering how your media free hour went this month. I don’t think I could live without my laptop! My big goal is to avoid holiday weight gain and stay zen!

    December 1, 2012
    • Oh, it didn’t :-/ It is SO hard to disconnect! Working on it again this month, though 🙂

      Your goals are totally doable! I need to work on those two as well!

      December 3, 2012
  5. Courtney #

    Just wanted to let you know that you inspired me to start writing some monthly goals and reviewing how they go….some really cool things have been happening since I started! Thanks for sharing yours. Writing goals helps dreams become reality! #dreamchasing:
    “Follow your dreams. They know the way”

    December 2, 2012
    • #dreamcrushing #goalcrushing awesomeness! I’m so happy to hear that! Big things happen when you write them down, share them and see them everyday 🙂

      December 3, 2012
  6. MIA (Minneapolis Institute of Art) is wonderful! So is the Walker if you haven’t been there yet! I love the BAFTA Awards that they show in December! Went last year and will be going again this year!

    December 2, 2012
    • The Walker is fantastic! The ad awards are a tradition my grad school girls and I do every year… can’t wait to see them on Thursday!

      December 3, 2012

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