Christmas Dish and New Year's Resolutions

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

So I'm back! I made it out alive! How was everyone's Christmases? Mine was surprisingly good, despite the arctic temperatures and the fact that I spent all of Christmas morning on Skype. Two of my brothers are back home in Canada, while one lives in Africa and one is in England. It was a very international Christmas for us. Seriously, my children have become so tech savvy. Sometimes, when I'm at my laptop my little two year old son comes running over to say hi because he's so used to seeing his grandparents, uncles and their dogs on the screen. I don't know whether that's cool or just the slightest bit sad.

ANYWAY, time to dish on how our husbands did! Mine did awesome. If you'll allow me to totally husband brag for a moment, mine is a very good gift giver. I swear I'm more excited than the kids on Christmas morning because I'm like WHAT DID YOU GET ME. This year, he put a bunch of presents under the tree. Then, he reserved my three big presents and brought them out one by one, each time letting me think that it was the grand finale. But in my house, it's not the grand finale until Jae cries.

And CRY I DID. I had been asking my husband for a long time for a plain wedding band to wear on a daily basis. Don't get me wrong, I love my engagement ring / wedding set, but I liked the idea of having something just plain to wear with a tee and jeans, you know? So he took that and ran with it. I think every woman should get the experience of getting a gift in a little blue box. When I was skyping with my brother, his BRAND NEW fiancee saw the box and yelled "TIFFANY'S!" And I was like yes! You understand! lol. Anyway, the band isn't completely plain... it's beveled at the edges and engraved with T&Co logo and date and I'm in love.

The other thing that we did for each other was FINALLY get rid of the 1980s couch that was sitting in our loft and replace it with a new leather set. Seriously. On Saturday I parked myself in the recliner and got through about 450 pages of my new book. YAY!

Christmas was the usual gluttony-filled morning for us. We stayed up way late the night before because we had bought our kids both a water table and a small four wheeler. I made a deal with my hubs that I would put together the water table if he did the four wheeler. The four wheeler came out of the box assembled. I, however, was stuck plumbing the stupid water table. And then the kids didn't even notice it sitting there on Christmas morning. Neat.

*Shudder* the aftermath. Christmas has since been eradicated from my home and everything feels very sparse and spacious.

I love Christmas, but I also love when it's over. It seems like everyone has been talking about how New Year's is such a fresh, new time. I don't know about you, but I actually don't like resolutions. I have a friend whose family starts the year off with a really bad habit, like watching TV for five hours straight or eating candy for breakfast. Once you start the year off so terribly, everything else is a good choice from there, right? But I do believe it's a good time to make a few goals for yourself. OBVIOUSLY mine are going to be appearance related, because I am shallow like that.

Let's talk goals. The first? How about giving yourself some time? If I hear one more mom say she doesn't have any time for herself when her daughter walks by with an elaborate updo complete with ribbons, bows, flowers and a small bird, I am going to go crazy. If you want more time for yourself, give more time to yourself. Your child won't die if she has to wear a ponytail to preschool once in a while.

Let's also not feel guilty about spending that time. Moms live in this whole underworld of guilt and shame 24/7. You're not active enough, you don't pay enough attention, you pay too much attention, the house isn't clean, your 18 month old son isn't reading, I KNOW. But it's not all going to get done today, so slap on some mascara once in a while without feeling like you're ruining your family.

Stop comparing yourself to other moms. There's always going to be someone more put together and better organized that you, but you're pretty awesome too. And there's probably someone who hates YOU for being so perfect, and isn't that a warm fuzzy feeling inside?

Find something that you love about yourself. And I'm not talking about the stuff your mom told you that you were good at when you were 10. I mean something that you really, truly love about yourself, that you can be proud of. Then cultivate it and use it. Perfect your pot of chili, take the best pictures, crack jokes or run a marathon, whatever. Become reacquainted with yourself every so often. Sometimes I get so wrapped up in being the mom-Jae, the wife-Jae, the writer-Jae, that I forget what it's like to be just Jae.

Even if you aren't a resolution maker, it doesn't hurt to try and make this year better than the last. Yup, the economy sucks. And yes, Brad kept a girl with VAMPIRE TEETH on The Bachelor Monday night. But that doesn't mean 2011 can't be awesome.

And! If you do make resolutions, remember that by this time next year, they'll be broken and you can start again. Oh how I love a second (and third, fourth and fifth) chance.

Anyone else want to add to my list of resolutions?

Oh yeah... no more mom jeans.

Or harem pants.


Kari said...

ooh! i love the couches! good choice.

mushbelly said...

Loved this post. Seriously Jae - you have a way with fashion - but maybe even more, you have a way with words. You are funny and witty and smart and I love reading your blog. So good job. I love the part about finding something about yourself that you love and cultivating it. Good advice. I'm on it.

Also - what book did you read 450 pages of on your comfy and beautiful new couch?

Jae said...

Mush! Thanks for the kind words. You rock. I hot through half of Ken Follet's new book, Fall of Giants. Love him! Super epic... I have like, 100 pages to go... the thing is a 1,000 page doorstop.

stephanie said...

Great post! I intend to get dressed {and cute!} at least every weekday. Between a toddler and being 5 months pregnant I just don't put forth the effort I used to but when I do I feel fabulous! I definitely need to spend a little more time on me :)

Jae said...

Stephanie, the days were I get dressed and put forth a little effort are always so much more productive for me! lol. Like, if I sit around in yoga pants and sweats I just want to lie on the couch and watch back to back Say Yes to the Dress for three hours instead of working.


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