Biggest lesson from 2018. I don’t know what the future holds, and I’m OK with that. I’ve learned to live more comfortably in the in-betweens, the valleys when you’re not quite sure whether you’re on fallow or fertile land. I wrote a bit about this on my 34th birthday last June, and my father called me after and told me that he had the exact same revelation around his 34th or 35th birthday. Maybe this is a wisdom that comes only with age (and the heartaches, heartswells, and heartbreaks that attend it).
Biggest regret from 2018. I wish I had figured out a way to visit my sister in London (P.S. — a bunch of her gorgeous pieces are on sale right now!) and my brother in Billings, MT. We needed a year to stay put after the chaos of 2017, but I regret not making the effort to visit them, especially now that my sister is relocating to New York and that it seems unlikely I’ll see my brother and his family in 2019. I recently heard on the news that one common trait among “happy people” (however they define that…) is that they make ample time for loved ones. I wish I’d done the same for these two in 2018.
Biggest achievement from 2018. This blog took off. I am deeply flattered by your readership and proud of the space we have created here together. A reader recently asked for tips on how to improve her writing. I first wanted to say — “when you figure that out, let me know; I’ll take those tips, too.” But then I reconsidered, seeing that my reply smacked of false modesty — because I do love some of the writing I’ve done here, and I think that some of the pieces from 2018 are among the best I’ve ever written. Others are like open-mouthed sobs: catharsis in action. I still cry when I re-read my post on the death of one of my best friends. I didn’t know I carried the weight of her death so close to my heart after all of these years. And I feel weepy when I think of my grandmother and how she kept time. Meanwhile, this post was among my most controversial posts and I felt like I was going to throw up after I published it; I am both ashamed of it and proud of it, and it’s probably small potatoes to most people but it required no small act of bravery on my end. Anyway. This blog — this writing — is my greatest achievement this year.
P.S. I already know what 2019’s will be: the birth of my son.
Favorite memory from 2018. About 34 different memories of mini flooded into my mind, but I have to say that I think I’ll remember something different when I think back on this year: watching Mr. Magpie return to himself. I hope I am not hurting his feelings by saying that I missed him. But I missed myself, too; we were not ourselves for the winter of 2017-2018.
Number one resolution for 2019. Be present. The photo above captures the mood I’m after. No one walks around with her hands behind her back unless she’s committed to living in the moment, observing the minutaie around her. (Also — no cell phone on her.)
Favorite 2018 fashion purchase. I got a lot of wear out of my SZ Blockprint caftans. I paired them with my Hermes Oran sandals and huge sunglasses like every other day of the week. So comfortable and breezy while chasing mini around, and still chic!
Top goals for 2019. Deliver a healthy baby in May (that’s more of a prayer than a goal — it’s in God’s hands). Be present, patient, and compassionate in my roles as wife and mother. Figure out our housing situation — to buy or not to buy?! Write more. Read more — and read widely. Spend more time in a posture of gratitude. Wear sunscreen every single day. Possibly publish some of my fiction here on the blog…
Top lust list items for 2019. A four-bedroom apartment. HA. In all reality, I dream of all the things here regularly, but when we do move, I am sure I’ll be preoccupied with whatever new furnishings said move involve, as the intent is to upgrade to a three-bedroom apartment with more space. From a fashion standpoint, I have my eyes on a couple of labels right now: The Vampire’s Wife (I love the line these dresses walk between elegant and funky — how fantastic is this? or this elegant gown?), Acler (this is so sophisticated for an evening event, and this is dreamy for a summer wedding), and Ganni (can’t stop wearing this, and I have this on my radar in the event of a formal occasion while pregnant). I anticipate I’ll be looking closely at their collections this year.
Currently in your Amazon cart. This foot peeling mask, on the recommendation of a reader, this white noise machine, these reusable makeup removing pads (still on the fence about the magic eraser), more Ziploc vac pac bags for clothing storage, and a rom com in book form.
P.S. I’d be intrigued to hear your answers to any or all of the above, but especially your number one resolution for the year. I’ve seen a bunch of people sneer at the concept of new year resolutions — they’re impractical! they set us up for failure! it’s such an arbitrary practice! — but I love the notion of taking time to think about something I want to be better at. If “resolution” is too scary a word, think of it as an “intention.” What’s yours?
P.P.S. I want this mug so badly but refuse to pay $4.95 in shipping when the mug itself costs $4.95. There’s a CB2 on the UES but then I’d be paying $2 or so in subway fees each way. So…it works out to be the same. I’m in a cul de sac here people. What to do, what to do…
P.P.P.S. Mr. Magpie gifted me this cookbook for Christmas and I LOVE IT. I made the french toast on New Year’s Day and it was RIDICULOUS. It’s such fun, loud party food book. It’s decidedly NOT Mr. Magpie’s style of eating — for starters, he’s a purist (“pad thai with bacon in it?!? THE HORROR!”) and he has a refined approach to menu design (ahem, he made beef wellington for Christmas dinner). I love how crazy and fun her recipes are, though. I’m going to use this for my girl nights in, when I have my gal friends over for TV and wine (or not wine for me right now, but ya know.) Also — more great cookbooks and our favorite kitchen gear.