Sayonara, 2014!

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Good morning, lovely readers! Can you believe it’s Christmas? This year has really flown by. I wanted to take to my blog to wish you all a happy holiday season, and to let you know that this may be my last post of 2014 (not making any official promises, because I still have a post being reviewed, but still). I will be visiting my boyfriend in Florida for two weeks, and in effort to be present during the trip, posts will be few and far between.

I am still very much interested in having a couple of guest bloggers appear on the scene while I’m on vacay! Please email me at mali@mostlymidwestern.com if you’re interested. 

Before I go, I thought I’d take a moment to reflect on the past year. I began my blog as a resolution, back when I was blogging as Musings by Mali. I wasn’t strongly committed to blogging and took a long accidental hiatus, but since rebranding and switching to Mostly Midwestern, I’ve been posting at least once every week. I’d call that a success!

Some of you may have been following me at the beginning of the year, when I first embarked on a fitness journey. I had some great success at the beginning of the year, but lost my way at the end of the semester. Still, in the first few months of 2014 I felt that I really committed myself to my weight loss resolution, which is more than I can say for any other year (and I’ve been resolving to do so for as long as I can remember). In 2015, I plan to rededicate myself to those goals and challenge myself to stick with a consistent workout plan longer than I did this year.

We lost our family dog, Dali, of 15 years in February, and I can’t begin to explain how much I miss her. I really have a hard time thinking about her without getting teary-eyed. She lived a full and wonderful life, and I was fortunate to be with her in her last year. I don’t pretend to know what dogs are thinking, but after reading the “10 Canine Commandments”, the tenth being “go with me on difficult journeys; never say, ‘I can’t bear to watch it.’ or ‘Let it happen in my absence.’ Everything is easier for me if you are there”, I knew I had to be there with and for her when she left us.

After Dali passed, I didn’t think I’d be ready for another dog for quite some time. About two months later, however, Otis came along, and he’s brought an unimaginable amount of joy into my life since May. The house is just too quiet without a pup around.

2015 is going to be a year of change and excitement. I’m on track to graduate in May, and will be moving south shortly thereafter. This year, instead of resolving to lose weight, I want my resolution to be this: live a healthy lifestyle and learn to (at least) like my body. I often think about how much time I spend critiquing myself and how damaging it is to my self esteem. This year, I hope to do something about it, and I’m determined to learn to love myself in the process.

My other resolution is to be present. I read Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty this year, and this quote from the book finally found a way to describe how I often find myself feeling.

“As Jane looked around her, she felt that dissatisfied feeling she often experienced when she was somewhere new and lovely. She couldn’t quite articulate it except with the words If only I were here. This little beachside cafe was so exquisite, she longed to really be there – except, of course, she was there, so it didn’t make sense.”

When I find myself somewhere beautiful or in a situation I want to remember in great detail, I have to remind myself that I’m there. I don’t know if there’s a “cure” for this feeling, but in effort to be more present, I want to spend less time capturing the moment (ya know, for my Instagram) and more time being in the moment. A picture is worth a thousand words, but a memory is invaluable in comparison.

Merry Christmas, happy holidays, and a wonderful new year to each and every one of you!

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