New Year’s Resolutions

Are you starting to think about what you’d like to do or change in the new year?

Do you have any new goals or ambitions?

I’ve begun to think about these and have a couple ideas.

I’m wondering if I write them out loud, if it’ll help make them stickier.

I have two right now.

My first one is to clean out my mouth. I have a potty mouth and it would probably be good for me to give it a good sweep. I don’t know why I like to swear, but it isn’t pretty. On one level, it feels like a big release to me. When I swear, I think it let’s the frustration out. But then I feel badly for saying bad words and being a bad example. So I’m going to try being more polite this year.

My second goal is to meet people where they are at. I tend to have high expectations of my friends and loved ones. I get disappointed easily and sometimes only see my point of view and struggle to understand why others act the way they do when I think their behavior is different than what I expect. This is dumb! I want to be able to accept whatever people have to offer and not judge. I want to see things from their perspective and be more open and accepting of what is so that I can enjoy their gifts and time shared with me instead of wondering why they don’t do what I want them to do. I’ve begun practicing this one and I love the results so far. Being accepting and not judging is awesome for everyone and creates stronger connections. I love this.

So what about you? Wanna share what you’re thinking about for next year?

Happy New Year in two more weeks!!


Day 100

Day 100 – Today was a busy day. This is an image of my desk which captures a little bit of my messy little world. It has my new Dutch book, dreaming of my first trip to Hawaii, a few Dropjes, my paper organizer that I still love, my Stella & Dot clutch/purse that carries my wallet and essentials and can be easily transferred from tennis bag, to car, to school, etc., fun sunglasses, and lots of papers! But back to my busy day…

This morning I had my first dutch lesson with Ilse. Finding Ilse was such a cool story. I was playing tennis with a friend and I mentioned we were moving to Holland. She asked if I knew Ilse and that she taught Dutch. I told her I had met Ilse at our church and had seen her at school, and riding her bike all over town, but I didn’t know she spoke Dutch and hadn’t really talked with her much. But the next day I saw Ilse at the Kindergarten playground and reintroduced myself, explaining my story and now the rest is history. She agreed to tutor me and today was my first lesson. She came to my house for an hour+ and we chatted in Dutch while drinking tea and coffee. I learned the alphabet and dipthongs, and practiced asking questions and used lots of repetition. My brain really had to think and I loved learning something new, even though it was challenging. The other cool thing about Ilse, is that she introduced me to another woman who is also moving to Amsterdam with her husband and 4 kids. I love how our little world is so connected. My new friend and I met a couple weeks ago and introduced our kids and will hopefully be neighbors in Amstelveen soon. I love my friends and how we’re all connected.

While Ilse was hear tutoring me, the gardner came to remove our favorite tree that has been infested with a nasty bug called thrips. This made me really sad because I loved this tree. Is it weird to love a tree? But really – it had character and was architecturally beautiful with great “bones” and has been with us for 11 years. But the tree had been dying for the last several years. I have great memories of C climbing to the top and J finding a middle branch to sit in and read a book. It used to provide a great shade canopy over our patio for our many BBQs and potluck dinners, but recently it just provided shadows. With the tree gone, our patio is very bright and the yard looks so much bigger. I guess that’s a good thing.

J was home from school today with a fever and double ear infection. I’m thankful that I was easily able to bring her to the doctor and get antibiotics for her within a few hours. This is one worry I have moving to Holland – will we be able to have as good and quick health care there and will I be able to communicate with the health care professionals? I guess I better keep practicing my Dutch.

And the sun was shining brightly today, so little C was able to go out to baseball practice this evening. I’m hyper aware of the sun shining and that my son gets to play baseball and that he probably won’t get to play in Holland. I’m aware of the changes that are coming and I feel a bit melancholy, even though I want the changes that are to come, I don’t want them to get here too fast. In a way, it makes me enjoy what is even more. I like that.

At the dinner table tonight, we talked about our 100 days left in the states and what we want to do before we leave. We came up with 3 more plans: 1) Big C decided that he wants to have his birthday party be a movie and sleepover party. 2) Little C came up with a guest list for his Laser Quest party and 3) We decided and booked tickets to Colorado to see Jeff’s grandparents and family before we move. It was a lively discussion and felt good. But now I’m exhausted. Hopefully tomorrow I’ll get to play tennis and “relax” a bit!!

Good night. Sweet dreams. Tot ziens! – A.