Sunday, January 5, 2014

Welcome to 2014 – for Better or Worse?

All told, 2013 has had its challenges. Professionally - I, along with most small business owners, have worked harder than ever to make up for the economic challenges we’re facing (overcoming!). Personally - my youngest is getting married next year, so my 2013 has seen a lot of check writing, compromising, and ultimately backseat taking (not my favorite position when my ever-so-helpful opinions are right there on the tip of my tongue).
So I’ll admit that as I wrap up 2013, I’m not waxing sentimental about saying goodbye to this year. Maybe I’m, ahem, old enough to be over the false hopes of new year = new start.

Come January first, I plan to show up for 2014 with the best intentions. I want to join the positive, enthusiastic crowd. The first of the year is an opportunity to renew our commitment to do better, to do more, to change. Making the decision to TRY is what starts us in a positive direction.

So I’m trying. The challenges of past years don’t vaporize as you ring in that New Year. While we’re drinking champagne and pretending we know the words to Auld Lang Syne, things look pretty rosy. The problem is we haven’t popped a cork yet, and I fear I am already in the trees of the forest of best intentions.

That’s not okay with me. Next year brings a big celebration for our family! Brittany’s wedding is the Hyde event of the decade, and we’re adding a great new son-in-law to the family. We have been planning for the go date of March 1 for over a year now. My first 2014 resolution has to be to make the final two-month wedding push a positive and enjoyable experience for my family – and me!

So, to make that happen, here is what I drafted for my original to-do list:

  • Not gripe when my loving husband puts his foot down and makes me stick to our budget. 
  • Not tell my daughter how her wedding should look, smell, be recorded, or be scheduled. 
  • Not complain when family members tell me they cannot make the big event. 
  • Not be hard on myself about those last five pounds before the final fitting for my dress. 
  • Not worry about every last detail – no matter how earth shattering (in my mind). 
I quickly noted the “nots”. I hadn’t created a to-do list. I had a not-to-do list. Having read somewhere that negative resolutions don’t work, I set about writing a second draft. My positive, enjoyable list needed to be more, well, positive and enjoyable.

Second shot:
  • Respect the money – and the man who shares my checkbook (and who may possibly have a healthier perspective on how much one should pay for fondant flowers). 
  • Realize that my full-grown daughter has been planning HER wedding for two decades. I can trust her to make the best decisions and keep myself in check for two short months. 
  • Send video snippets of the wedding to friends and family unable to make the trip. The wedding is not a “must be present to win” proposition. 
  • Five pounds? I’m a grandma. I need a lap upon which to plop the little ones. 
  • About those nagging details…in the history of weddings, has there ever been one without a hitch? Do what we can ahead of time, laugh off what shoulda/coulda been done after the fact. 
So that’s my first sixth of the year – the rest of the year, I resolve to really look beyond myself and my “stuff.” I am so lucky to have such a great family, such wonderful children and a truly fantastic husband. I work with great people who do wonderful work and pull together to create FAMILY Magazine.

So all to-do lists aside, my Resolution is to value my friends, co-workers and family and to show them how important they are to me. I will hug my children more often, kiss my grandkids ‘til they object and dance with my husband every chance he gives me.

Life is good, life is grand. It is going to be a positive, enjoyable year!

I wish you the same! Happy Parenting in 2014!


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