What’s Saving My Life

I recently discovered that Kendra Adachi has a podcast! I’ve been a big fan of Kendra’s work at The Lazy Genius ever since I saw her YouTube series for her book, The Lazy Genius Kitchen. I love the way her brain works: she is smart and systematic, but always makes sure that when solving problems, we name what matters and customize any solutions to us personally. I couldn’t adore her philosophy more if I tried, especially since it really mirrors my own approaches to business & productivity coaching. There are no one-size-fits-all answers, because the answer depends on who you are and what you care about. I could go on and on, but the point is that I love Kendra, and now I love her podcast too.

One episode title caught my eye as I was scrolling: What’s Saving My Life. In it, she explained that this is an episode she tries to do quarterly to share all the things making her happy, helping her feel more grounded, or making life easier overall. By acknowledging what’s saving your life in this season, you are appreciating it and feeling gratitude, and you’re also sharing things that might save other people’s lives, too! Of course, I was instantly enamoured of this idea and immediately started thinking about what’s been saving my life in this particular season. It is a very fun exercise, and I think also gives a great snapshot of what life looks like these days. I’m going to try to do it quarterly from now on, and each time I’ll share ten things that have been making life better lately. Here we go! 10 things from the past quarter-ish that are making life easier.

Protein Coffee

I got this idea from Sarah at Go Clean Co. who shared that she struggles to get enough protein in the morning and sometimes forgets to eat breakfast at all. I likewise don’t like making breakfast, but I’m cranky and exhausted if I don’t eat anything, so enter: protein coffee! She makes hers with a milk frother, but I have been shaking mine up in a blender bottle (just make sure to let the steam out after the first few shakes!) and it works like a dream. I find that I don’t need any added sugar or cream, and it works great with both vanilla and chocolate protein powders. Easy, simple, and makes the mornings a little bit better.

Souper Cubes

Mike sent me a Lee Valley email newsletter (beware, all ye who wish not to spend money, unsubscribe thee hence!!) featuring these things, and I immediately purchased them. I got the two-pack of the 1-cup size and have already used them to freeze chili and soup into perfect little cubes that stack up nicely in freezer bags in the freezer. I particularly like that they’re frozen in individual serving sizes because my biggest issue is figuring out what to have for lunch and accessing it quickly. I have plans to fill them again tomorrow with mulligatawny. Yeehaw!

Eufy the Vacuum

All my friends already know that I am truly, madly, deeply obsessed with our robot vacuum Eufy, who I found on Facebook Marketplace for a mere $50 cash. It was one of Go Clean Co.’s top picks for robot vacuums because it’s very effective, very slim, and not very loud. And we love this thing. We have not vacuumed since we got it, and our floors have never looked better. It gets stuck sometimes and it bumps into walls a lot like a little drunk robot, but we feel very fondly towards him and he makes life easier every single day. I am not exaggerating when I saw it is the best $50 I’ve ever spent. (And yes, obviously we put googly eyes on him.)

DayStamp

A recent discovery, this little habit tracking app has been saving my life since the very end of 2023. I am using it to track my daily habits of meditation, exercise, writing and flossing, and I love so many things about it. It can track unlimited habits, which is great because many such apps max out at 3. It’s simple and clean and customizable, so I can add emojis and colours to make it more personalized. And most importantly, it offers a little widget for my phone’s homescreen so throughout the day I can quickly be reminded of which habits I haven’t done yet today, and they’ll grey out as I complete them. I cannot wait for the end of the year too, because they have a really cool-looking colour grid for each habit, showing how many times you completed it.

StrongLifts

This app/program has been making it easier for me to get into weight-lifting without feeling intimidated or overwhelmed. It is an extremely simple but well-rounded program that has you do five sets of five reps for 3 exercises per day, on alternating days. This makes it super-simple to follow along and (for me) to stay consistent with it, because it never feels that daunting or super long to complete. You can read an *extremely* comprehensive explanation of why the program is designed this way here, or just download the app here. I only have dumbbells at home so I don’t always increase by the amount the app tells me to, but that’s okay! I’m still growing in how much I can lift, which is pretty fun.

Free Swimming

The rec centre near my house has free swimming nights every Monday, and I’ve been really enjoying them! I have always loved to swim, but haven’t done it too much in recent years except for fun in the summer months. It feels good (and also hard!) to get back to swimming lengths and treading water. It’s such a good workout and feels so good to come home and bundle up afterwards.

The Lazy Genius Podcast

I already mentioned this one up top, but I have been loving the show as a whole so it deserves a mention! As I said, Kendra’s way of approaching problems really resonates with me, and I have been enjoying catching up on the backlog of episodes about everything from holiday downtime to division of labour to being a lazy genius about audiobooks. I just like her no-nonsense approach to figuring out what matters most to you in a given subject or season, and finding ways to customize your life and habits to support that. One of her principles is “live in your season”, which I just absolutely love. Finding solutions for the season you’re in is a genius idea, and one I wish I’d known more actively last year in a particularly tough season. Highly recommend giving the show a listen!

Dinner Candles

Since we moved into our new apartment at the beginning of November, we have had candles for dinner almost every night. I was inspired particularly by Elise Cripe on this, who recently thrifted a vintage match holder/striker to mount in their dining room to make dinner candles easier each night. Actually, writing this is reminding me that since we put away the Christmas candles this week, I have yet to put new tapers out for the table! Must remedy immediately, because nightly candles just makes life feel a little more special, which saves my life in this dark season.

Clementines

I have a big bowl of clementines on our dining room table and one on our coffee table, and every day it makes it easier for us to eat more fruit and get more vitamin C. Mike almost always gives me a piece of the one he’s peeling, I always have one after lunch, and we usually have one as a snack while we’re watching TV at night. When people come over, they often have one too! They’re fun, easy and delicious – and cheap. Since tis the season, I can get a big crate of them for almost nothing, and they make me happy for weeks.

Street Art

I’m not going to lie to you, lately things have been feeling a bit dreary, especially since we took down the decorations and the sun has only shown itself like once in two weeks. It’s grey and it’s cold and there is not much growing right now, so my daily dog walks tend to be a bit dull. Except! Our new neighbourhood has a whole bunch of hidden murals in its back alleys, and I seem to discover a new one every few days. Seeing that burst of colour and beauty makes everything feel a bit brighter, even if it’s cloudy and overcast. They light up my morning, and I love posing Bruno in front of them as a souvenir.


Okay! Fun! I love this concept and I love this list. Looking it over, I feel a sense of joy at all the little things that are carrying me and making life better in this particular season. It is really nice to take a moment to appreciate each of them, and to realize what really does make me happy. It’s a good reminder to not stop doing what works (aka, go get those tapers right now! go back to swimming on Monday!) and to continue looking for small things to brighten my days.

PS. This reminds me of my birthday favourites lists! Here are my favourite things from when I was 29.

2024: Strength

Illustration by Morgan Harper Nichols

By now I’ve shared quite a bit about the past few years and how I’ve felt throughout them. In short: not great! When I think back, what stands out the most to me is my overall feeling of fragility. Of not being sure what small thing was going to make me break down in tears, or of feeling utter despair at even the most minute setback. I often felt unsure I could handle a small uncertainty or try a new thing without it rattling me.

I hate that I’ve spent so much time feeling this way, because this is really not how I think of myself as a person. I grew up going on adventures at overnight summer camp and taking on singing musical theatre roles and bossing my younger sisters around incessantly. I was not delicate! I’ve always been a big feeler, but I’ve also always been confident. Even when I was nervous about something (examples: backpacking Europe by myself, moving to Korea for a year and Ecuador for another, starting my own business), I’d feel the fear and do it anyways. I knew I wanted to be the kind of person who did those things, even if I wasn’t sure I was that kind of person. Surprise! By doing the things, I became the kind of person who did the things.

Baby Steph in Italy, 2009

Until I wasn’t anymore. Until a pandemic and toxic neighbours and a crazy puppy tore through my life like a hurricane and deposited me in Sad Town, USA. I lost myself, and for a long while my confidence was shaken and my resilience felt practically non-existent.

As I shared in my Year in Review post, I’m in a better place now, but I feel like my muscles of confidence and resilience have atrophied more than I’d like. I’ve held onto several bad habits from The Dark Years™️, like hibernating at home instead of adventuring, or hitting the snooze button non-stop every morning, or mindlessly scrolling all night instead of reading a gosh-darn book. They’re relics of a time when I felt like hiding and/or numbing, which I don’t want to do anymore.

Instead, I want to show up for myself & my people. I want to rebuild my confidence and feel more resilient. I want to be less thrown off by small things, and more equipped to tackle big things. At the risk of sounding like one of those “Become Your Best Self!” people, I really do want to get back to feeling like my best self. I want to remind myself of my own strength, and offer that strength to others.

So my word for 2024 is Strength. As with most of my words, this one kept appearing to me as the year came to a close, along with other ones that felt aligned. Strength, strong, resilience, stamina, discipline, embodiment, fortitude, endurance. Challenge, practice, tough, core, spine, habits, routine. Dig deep, stand tall. As my mom always says, “Strong like bull.”

These words have an edge to them. They aren’t gentle and comforting, as many of my previous words have been (ex. soften, grace, abundance, embrace). They ask more of me. They remind me that sometimes the more compassionate, kind thing to do is bring in some structure, some discipline, some accountability. Being lax is not always being loving. Sometimes, you need that strong mama bear energy: do no harm, but take no shit.

Really, I’m choosing this word because I want to constantly be reminded that I’m stronger than I think. When I’m tempted to fall back into patterns that don’t serve me, or crumple when confronted with a challenge, I want to remember who I really am, deep down. And not just remember, but also create myself anew. There are places where I have always lacked strength, and I’d like to actively build up that strength for perhaps the first time – in my boundaries, in my biceps, in my bedtime routines.

One thing I love about strength is that it’s not binary, something you either have or you don’t. It builds up gradually, and it fades away steadily if not in use. We all possess various strengths and lacks thereof, but we always have the choice to build up our strength layer by layer, day by day.

Strength

  • the quality or state of being physically or mentally strong
  • the influence or power possessed by a person
  • the capacity of an object to withstand great force or pressure
  • the emotional or mental qualities necessary in dealing with difficult or distressing situations
  • a person or thing perceived as a source of mental or emotional support
  • bravery in dealing with difficulties

Synonyms: Courage, tenacity, fortitude, power, vitality, effectiveness, backbone, steadiness, health, anchor, spirit, vigour, virtue.

Intentions

  • Body: Quite simply, I want to get stronger! I’ve been weight-lifting at home lately with the StrongLifts program and it’s helping me discover the joy of strengthening underused muscles. I also need to get help & support with my back, which has been giving me problems and pain for years. I know the solution will involve literally straightening and strengthening my spine, which feels like a metaphor if there ever was one.
  • Mind: I have let my meditation & gratitude practices slip dramatically since the pandemic years, and I’d like to reclaim them. Meditation especially, because it helps me become less reactive and always brings me new ideas, two things I sorely need. I’d also like to reduce distractions, minimize multi-tasking and seriously curb my social media usage. To strengthen my mind, my focus, and my creativity, I need to limit the things that weaken them.
  • Reading: On a related note, I’d like to strengthen my reading practice! Over the past few years, I’ve tended to avoid challenging books in favour of nourishing romance that brings me delight and joy. To be clear: this is great! In my opinion, there is no moral hierarchy to books, different genres serve different needs at different times. BUT. I also like to read books that push me, that change the way I see the world and introduce complex new ideas, and those have been lacking in recent years due to my burnout. This year, I’d like to strengthen my focus and return to deeper reading.
  • Habits: I am also really excited to strengthen my habits in 2024. I’ve chosen four to track throughout the year: meditation, exercise, writing, and nightly flossing. I’ll be using DayStamp to monitor them, which offers a very cute visual report each month and year, plus a widget for my phone to show me what I haven’t done on a given day.
  • Community: We’ve just moved to Hamilton, and I’d love to spend time this year cultivating my community. One way I plan to do this is by starting a Cookbook Club locally, an idea that utterly delights me. I am lucky to know several friends in the city who I could deepen my relationship with, and some new online pals I’d like to meet up with. Plus, I’m living only about 20 minutes away from my mom, stepdad & grandma, who I adore. I’d like to host more gatherings & dinners, meet up with friends more often, make regular plans with my sisters and find the local entrepreneurial community here in Hamilton. When I lived in Toronto I had a very vibrant community, so I’d like to find it again in my new city.
  • Relationship: Mike and I are in a good place right now, but I want our relationship to become even stronger. For us to communicate better, strengthen our friendship, fight less and have more fun together.

And as my friend Sonja always says: more will be revealed! I’m curious to see how this word (like all my previous words) surprises me in ways good and bad. My friends and I often joke that when you choose a word, you also choose its opposite because that always seems to be the case. But I prefer to reframe it this way: when you choose a word, your attention gets drawn to all the ways that you are currently blocked from accessing that feeling or state. All the yucky stuff holding you back comes to the surface and needs to be dealt with before you can feel strong, or energized, or however you’d like to feel. So this year, I expect I’ll be shown where I am weak. I will likely feel weak on my way to strength. But that’s okay too, it’s all part of the process.

Welcome to 2024. For me, it’ll be the year of Strength. What will this year be for you? 

If you’re curious, you can explore all my past words below:

2013: Reach | 2014: Abundance | 2015: Grace | 2016: Light | 2017: Embrace | 2018: Flow | 2019: Energy | 2020: Devoted | 2021: Soften | 2022: Present | 2023: Sustainable

One Second Everyday: 2023

I’m so delighted to share my 1SE video for 2023. This is my seventh year completing this daily video project, and every year I do it I am beyond grateful to have this time capsule of my life. Those who know me know that my memory is fairly abysmal, so having little glimpses of what daily life looked like each day helps me remember and appreciate.

In every year (and every yearly video), there are lots of boring days where nothing much happens and you’re going through the motions. The challenge is to find what’s special about that day, or see something in your life in a new way that makes it feel special. And worst case? You capture the boring moment, and when life moves on and your everyday life looks completely different, you’ll be grateful for that snapshot. At least: I am. I always am.

So here is my life in 2023. Not always easy, but steadily building towards something beautiful.

xo
Steph

PS. This is the app I use to create these videos! If you’re curious you can watch my previous videos here: 2016201720192020, 2021 & 2022.

2023 In Review

For me, 2023 was the year of rebuilding. I’d had such a difficult time (physically, emotionally, pandemically) over the previous few years that in many ways, I came into 2023 at my absolute lowest. I have a photo I took of myself on New Year’s Day at some random rest stop where I look absolutely miserable, even though there was no “reason” for being so sad. Actually, the reasons were many: we lived in a home and city I didn’t love, it felt like I never saw my partner, I was mostly single-parenting an energetic dog, and most importantly, the chemical imbalance in my brain had been thrown off to such an extent that I was sad almost all the time.

And thus began my quest for getting help. Not long afterwards I got in to see my doctor and got on anti-depressants (bless them, truly) and started therapy again. It was a slow process, but when I think back on 2023, I see myself moving through a long arc towards getting better. As I write this at the end of December, I can gratefully say that I feel exactly like myself again. My mind is clear, I can see the good stuff again, I can feel gratitude again. I have energy for all the little things that once eluded me, like chopping broccoli and going swimming and writing this blog. We now live in a new home and city that we both love, and it feels like Mike and I have had more quality time in the last couple months than in the last year combined.

So hey! Hi! I’m so glad to be back. I’m so grateful to be rebuilding my life, one good habit/book/routine/meal at a time. And I’m grateful for all the goodness I still experienced this year, despite how much of a struggle it was for me at times. I’m ready to close the chapter of this year, but first I’d like to honour it. Here we go.


January

The most important things that happened in January were the steps I took regarding my mental health. Like I said above, this is when I found a new therapist and started my medication. It was otherwise a pretty dark & sad month, but those actions alone helped me feel a little better almost immediately. My therapist encouraged me to let my family know what I was struggling with, and I was so moved by their support and love. But mostly, I hibernated: made some soups, celebrated three years with Mike, dealt with way too much snow, and took care of my Dad’s dog for a couple weeks.

February

The month started strong with a sweet little staycation in Stratford, which was absolutely delightful (hot baths, great doughnuts, cute cafés, oh my!). Sonja and I started going to the gym together on Wednesdays, mostly because of the treat of the sauna and hot tub afterwards. Katie came to visit and we had a few great days together eating apple fritters and talking incessantly. I also spent a lot of my time preparing and feeling anxious about our upcoming work trip to Kenya.

March

Kenya sounds like a dream, right? But we were there shooting a weeklong Indian wedding, and I was still feeling so fragile, so it was a mixed bag. It was hot and tough and physically demanding and quite stressful…AND it was pretty magical. It was incredible to see giraffes on the side of the road or zebras outside your tent, to get to know another culture, and to be surrounded by such gorgeous flowers and landscapes. I absolutely loved it there, and despite the challenges (of which there were many!) it was 100% worth it to get to experience such a wonderful country. That trip took up the first half of the month, and the second was spent settling back in, staying cozy, and getting used to the endless cold & snow again.

April

I love April because things start to feel alive again: the weather is warmer, it’s my birthday so I see lots of loved ones, the flowers start blooming, and things just feel brighter. This past April I did some delightful things: visited the Butterfly Conservatory, went to see Rent at Stratford, went to Red Lobster (IYKYK). I also hosted The Slowpreneur Retreat for the first time with delicious meals cooked by Sonja. It was a cozy, productive weekend full of good food and good energy, and it was so much fun to support such cool entrepreneurs at the most picturesque cottage. At the very end of the month, we headed to Almonte for a cozy, rainy ‘Nurture Nurture’ – the personal retreat I do twice a year with Sonja and her sister Moni. We dove deep and talked through sticky stuff, and it was so nourishing.

May

Every May, we host Nurture and it is full of magic. This time, it was Springlike and warm, so warm we could (briefly) do a cold plunge in the lake and sit outside for staff meal! We had a wonderful weekend making beautiful tote bags and eating delicious food, and I was very grateful for the togetherness and sunshine. When I got home, I got into sewing again and made the Capstone Hemlock top, which was a lot of fun. My friends Or & Ryan came to visit which was lovely, and Sonja took me on a surprise birthday daytrip to St. Mary’s which was cozy and delightful. I took a lot of photos of flowers and spent most of my time trying to keep Bruno out of the mud.

June

At the beginning of the month, I went to New York for a few days to spend some time with Katie before her daughter was born! We took it pretty easy, but a highlight was going to the Bisa Butler exhibition and swimming every afternoon. When I got home, it was a quiet month. I did a bit of landscaping (reluctantly), a bit of doodling (happily), and a bit of writing (excitedly). June was when I started writing my book Slowpreneur, which is going to be a guide to running an intuitive & sustainable business. I was also still into sewing! I did another version of the same top, and started cutting out fabric for my baby quilt for Katie’s daughter. Most importantly of all, Bron and I (FINALLY) went to see Hamilton the musical. It was amazing.

July

One of my very favourite months of any year! July is so festive and fun, with so much going on. Movies in the park, beach days, ribfests, swimming, hammock-swinging and reading, spending time at my mom’s, and being outside as much as possible. Notably this month I had a photoshoot with Creating Light Studio and it featured my sweet partner and my dog which was tons of fun for all of us. Mike and I also took a daytrip to Hamilton and fell in love with the city, which would prove fateful in just a few short months. At the very end of the month, we surprised my Dad by renting out the entire Little Prince Cinema in Stratford and watching (what else?!) The Mummy in our own private theatre with unlimited popcorn. Absolutely delightful.

August

We were on the move again, back to Romania for the second year in a row for Mike’s cousin’s wedding. We were shooting the wedding which was a bit of a disaster for us (picture 38 degree heat, the wrong footwear, a language barrier, heavy cameras and no food the entire day and you’ll begin to understand my internal state), though the couple were very happy! The rest of the trip was wonderful though, we visited the beautiful city of Brasov, went up to a cabin in the mountains with one of the most gorgeous views of my life, and finished by getting to explore more of Bucharest, especially the old town. We ate a lot of delicious things and it was a beautiful experience. When we got back, I spent the next couple weeks just recovering and enjoying the lovely weather, and we finished off the month with a beautiful community event I helped co-host at a nearby farm to celebrate the end of summer.

September

We started the month with our second-annual trip to Almonte for the Barron River Canyon trip to Algonquin and Sip & Sip 2023. This is quickly becoming one of my fave weekends of the year because it’s just so FUN, especially the second part (drinking, snacking, and floating down the river on inflatables for the whole afternoon!). Also in September, I hosted a Community Picnic for The Profoundery‘s 3rd birthday party and had so much fun connecting with everyone who showed up. Most importantly of all, halfway through the month we went to see our first (and only!) apartment in Hamilton and secured it just two days later. It was a huge relief to have this next step in our plan figured out, and the packing and decluttering began. My dad started coming by the house nearly every day to fix it up (we’d been renting from him, and he was readying to sell it), so the house was a bit chaotic right up until we moved.

October

I finished my baby quilt for sweet Roisin just in the nick of time to deliver it in-person on a quick trip to New York in early October. I wasn’t there long, but it was long enough to fall deeply in love with this adorable baby and help out Katie as much as possible. It’s always hard living far away from one of my best friends, but when she has a newborn?! Exponentially harder. I was so grateful for that visit, even though we were in prime packing time. When I got home, we continued the whirlwind of getting ready to move which was very hard because we had acquired a LOT of stuff over the course of a year, mostly inherited from my grandma, who had lived in the house before. At the end of the month, I took another break to head to our second-annual RBG Reading Retreat. My book club and I had a lovely weekend up north amongst the changing leaves with perfect weather, delicious food, matching sweaters and lots of time for reading. Delightful.

November

On the first of the month we moved into our new apartment, and it immediately felt like home. Mike and I kept joking that the place was “blessed” (aka the opposite of cursed), because everything just seemed to fit, we kept finding more closets, and we couldn’t stop discovering new things we loved about the home and neighbourhood. We also almost immediately started getting more visitors stopping by because we were closer, which made me incredibly happy. Halfway through the month I took a break from nesting and headed back to Nurture, which was cozy and lovely as it always is. Afterwards, I was thrilled to get home and back to our new life, where we’re creating lots of coziness and togetherness as much as we can. Another important addition of the month was Eufy, our new robot vacuum that I got on FB Marketplace for $50 and has changed our collective lives. HIGHLY recommend.

December

Which brings us to December! The delights of our new life here continued as I started going swimming at the rec centre every Monday, got a big beautiful Christmas tree for the first time, hosted a holiday party for my friends (where Sonja sang for the first time in years!), started reading and writing again, and gathered often with friends and family. Oh, and we definitely partook in a healthy amount of Donut Monster! This home feels cozy and warm, festive and welcoming, and it has been the absolute perfect respite to help me settle back into good routines and healthier habits. I am so happy with where we are right now and I truly feel – for the first time in a long time – like I can’t wait to see what happens next.


Firsts of 2023

  • First time being on anti-depressants
  • First time visiting the continent of Africa
  • First time taking care of two dogs at the same time
  • First time trying a heels dance class
  • First time having a CBD massage
  • First time creating an altar space at home
  • First time going to Choir! Choir! Choir!
  • First time going to a singalong movie (Mamma Mia!)
  • First time buying baby clothes
  • First time keeping a doodling sketchbook
  • First time successfully growing tomatoes without killing them
  • First time finding a bunny nest in our backyard
  • First time attending a ribfest
  • First time owning and using a hammock
  • First time taking Bruno for a photoshoot as a model
  • First time trying papanași
  • First time giving blood in over a decade
  • First time having a sourdough starter

2023 by the Numbers

  • Visited 1 new country in a whole new continent
  • Meditated for 3 hours and 42 minutes 
  • Approximately 2,602,815 steps walked
  • Read 77 books
  • Created 14 podcast episodes + was on 2 other podcasts
  • Did 17 strength-building workouts on StrongLifts

Favourite Books Read

My Word of the Year: Sustainable

I hate to say it, but as usual my word of the year fell out of focus for me somewhere around the halfway mark. This almost always seems to happen! I wish I was able to stay more connected with my word, but more often than not I lose sight of it somewhere along the way.

Still, I do think this was a year of figuring out what was sustainable for me. Where we were living was not sustainable in any way (commuting, costs, quality time, proximity to family), and our new place feels like the opposite. I feel like I could live here for years, happily. My routines with Bruno became far more sustainable the more that he grew up and matured into the goodboy that he is today, which has made life overall more relaxing. I learned more about what I have zero interest in sustaining (a garden) and what I do (my friendships). I saw where my routines are unsustainable (read: nonexistent) and started trying to find ways to build better ones like my new weekly swimming habit, my strength-building routine, and my sleep schedule. The pace of my work was very sustainable and calm, but the financial situation was not, so that’s something I plan to tackle in 2024.

Overall, I’d say this word was a solid touchstone for me. I like thinking about things in terms of how sustainable they feel for me and I think I’ll take that with me going forwards.


So there we are, that’s my 2023 in review. We’re ending in a much better place than where we started, and I feel more solid than I have in years. I don’t feel as wobbly or fragile, and I have more confidence in my ability to tackle new challenges. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still rebuilding. I need to figure out a plan for grocery shopping, and I don’t have a morning routine to speak of, and I still have back pain every day. But I’m working on it! I’m trying! I have the energy to try again and that alone is such a gift.

As I look ahead to 2024, I feel excited. I feel a sense of possibility and hope for what comes next, whether that’s at home as I create healthy habits and tiny family rituals, or out in the world exploring and connecting. I love the yearly traditions we’ve been creating and am looking forward to those happening for years to come. Roisin is growing up so fast and I can’t wait to spend more time with her. Our home is the perfect nest, and I am excited for more of our loved ones to come see it. There is so much goodness, and I can see it again.

As I write this it’s grey and rainy and cold, but the future is finally feeling bright. Wishing you a Happy New Year, my friends.

xoxo
Steph

PS. If you’re curious, you can see more of my year-end reviews here:

2022 | 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011

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