A new year.

2012 was, in an extraordinary number of ways, very kind to me. I got a new job in a tough economic period, and one where I've learned a lot, at that. I traveled to New Zealand and spent a month eating eggs benedict anywhere I could find it, then hiking up the nearest dormant volcano I could find to burn off all that butter.  I spent time with friends from all over the world. I made new friends, I kept in touch with old friends. I soaked up time with my family, and made trips to Seattle, Portland, Eugene, and San Francisco.

In other ways 2012 was a little cruel. I had my heart broken--by circumstance. For a lot of the year I felt like I was in a holding pattern, waiting to reach the next link in a chain that simultaneously made me incredibly happy and awesomely terrified, and left me crashing at my parents house (womp womp).

When I worked on cruise ships in 2010 and 2011, I had a trick for getting myself up and at 'em for a long day. As I was getting ready, and then as I walked to the mess/photo lab/gallery/gangway, I would repeat, nay chant a three word phrase.

"Fresh and peppy. Fresh and peppy. Fresh and peppy."

Even when I was feeling a little rough after staying in the crew bar too late the previous night, or just wanted to sleep another 4-6 hours after my alarm went off, that refrain fooled me into thinking I was indeed fresh and peppy. To this day, when I get a message from my manager at the time, he asks me if I'm still fresh and peppy.

So this morning, when I read Elise's post on her one little word for 2013 (she chose brave), I knew immediately what my word would be. And while peppy is a pretty fun word, it's a bit one-note. Fresh it is.

Because hey. Fresh pairs perfectly with peppy. But also with perspective. And food. And page. And I feel like it (at least loosely) applies to the other resolutions I have for this coming year. Which are as follows (in no particular order.)

1. Make the bed every day. I never got the hang of that one  (and please don't blame my mother. I was a stubborn lil' one.) I read recently that making your bed regularly is one way to be happier at home, and I think everyone could use a little more happy.

2. Work actively to improve my posture. Everyone looks better when they stand up straight. And the best way to improve your posture is through strengthening your core, which is why I stopped by Crossfit Oxnard (right across the street from work! How convenient!) to talk to the owner/coach Joe about ways I can get stronger this year. I love the idea of supporting a local small business run by a veteran.

3. Continue to eat well and make healthy choices. Fresh food just tastes better. And it's so darn pretty!

4. Keep a journal. (Oh hey, that's #4 on the happy list along with making my bed!) I have journal entries scattered around in a the several dozen notebooks on my bedsidetable/desk/bookcase/floor, but I'd like to really make an effort to keep them in one place. When I was traveling a lot, I got in the habit of buying a postcard and making a quick note on it: who I was with, what we did, what we ate, what we saw. It was perfect, and I'm in the process of putting them all together into a book. Now I need to find a similar way of chronicling my current (and admittedly less exciting, but still important) day to day life.

5. Knit a sweater. Which will keep me looking....fresh...? Okay, I'm stretching it a little on that one. But really. I love knitting, and I'm looking for a new challenge. I've made hats, and scarves, and a baby blanket, and binary coded tapestries for god's sake (I'm not kidding), but I haven't yet made the jump to proper garments. It's time. I'm thinking this pattern, from a favorite web-haunt of mine, Brooklyn Tweed. Or maybe this one. Or this one.

P.S. More inspiring words for a productive new year from Elsie Larson. Seriously, I want to be her when I grow up.


  1. You are truly a witty writer K!!
    Love, your fav reader, Traci

    1. My ONLY reader for now, but forever my favorite :)