Well, we’re a week in folks!
Hope you’re all still basking in that *new year* invigorating glow that the beginning of January seems to always bring about.
At the beginning of each new year, I have a list of things that I do that help me feel refreshed and renewed. I do these things each New Year and they help clean out the clutter, stress, and chaos from the end of the year holidays and open up new space for new beginnings.
Before I hopped into my New Year Rituals, I threw a dope New Year’s party with two of my best friends and my fiancé!
Our apartments are right on top of each other, so we threw a “double decker” party. We invited lots of pals over and we popped lots of bottles of bubbles and confetti and glitter (still finding glitter on our floors).
(our front door)
We even ended the evening by singing “Auld Lang Syne” around our piano.
Like the stuff of movies, y’all. It was magical.
Once the glitter was (mostly) cleaned up and the bottles were recycled, I jumped into preparing for the New Year!
The first thing I do at the beginning of the year is a digital cleanse.
I unfollow accounts that “ghost” me, or that I just don’t interact with. I delete people from Facebook that I’ve out grown, or that frankly just annoy me. I clean up my desktop and organize my photos on my computer into specific albums (seriously obsessed with doing this wow). I empty out old Google doc files from my email accounts.
Lastly, my most favorite thing that I do is I clean out ALL of my inboxes.
Once I’m done clicking that delete button on thousands of old emails, I FEEL INVINCIBLE! It’s amazing to have an empty inbox and I somehow feel less stressed after clearing it out?
It’s like a weight has been lifted or something and it’s AMAZING. (I think I’m going to try to do this at least once a month in 2018).
After I’ve had my digital detox, I move into a new planner.
Physical planners are very, very important to me. There is something almost therapeutic for me with physically writing out and planning my days. It definitely helps me with my anxiety and stress.
I’ve had probably every kind of planner possible. I’ve had a basic desk calendar, I’ve had a Passion Planner, I’ve had a Kate Spade Planner, and I’ve had a bullet journal.
This year, I went out to look for a planner and came back with nothing that made me happy or excited me. So, I decided to go back to bullet journaling. Honestly, bullet journaling was really fun when I did it in 2016 for a bit and I’m excited to jump back in!
I’m totally going about this in a “rogue” kind of way, because the hardcore bullet journalists of the world will tell you all about the specific kind of notebook and pens they bought, but I just found a cute lined notebook and bought some cute lil’ stickers and I’m all set. Woo!
While I was working on my new bullet journal, I went back through my old planner from 2017 and I felt a little emotional. It was full of all of my notes, dates, and important projects. Looking back on the calendars from some of the months leaves me a little breathless. Like, did I really do all of that??? Go me! I highly suggest if you still have your planner from 2017 to look through it before you give it the Viking’s funeral it probably deserves. It’s like a diary of all of the things you’ve accomplished from the last year. It will give you a little dose of hope and encouragement for 2018, promise.
Before the New Year really kicks off, I love to declutter and reorganize the chaos that is my home.
I go through closets, bookshelves, makeup drawers, and all of the clutter corners of my home and I try to get rid of the things that no longer serve me, reorganize what I do have, and make room for new things. All together, I donated a huuuuge bag of books to one of our neighborhood free libraries (they’re these cute lil’ houses that are sometimes on corners or in neighbor’s yards and you just put books in them! Just like little free libraries for you to take books and give some back!). I have an even bigger bag of clothes that Kyle and I are going to donate. I even managed to reorganize our storage unit! Whaaatttt?!?!?
Luckily for us, some of our Christmas gifts helped us with this part of the preparation for the new year! Kyle’s Mom got us these dopedopedope clear containers for all kinds of baking ingredients and it’s upped our storage game FOR SURE.
Kole and Brittany (my future brother & sister-in-law!!!) also MADE us a mug wall for our kitchen and I cannot wait to get them over here to hang it up in our kitchen, because it will open up so much more space for us! And show off all of my precious baby angel coffee mugs!! You already know I’ll post tons of pictures once we get it up on the wall.
Basically, I just tried to dig into those “problem areas” of my home and clean them out a little. Preparing for the party definitely helped us to deep clean our apartment! It’s just a nice feeling to start the New Year with organized closets, a little breathing room from the clutter, and fresh sheets (for the cats to take naps on).
(P.S. The long lady on the left is our newest baby, Magic! We call her Madge. We’re obsessed and in love with her.)
About a year and a half ago, Kyle bought me a Swell water bottle for our anniversary. It’s stainless steel and painted to look like wood. It’s been THE ONLY water bottle that I have CONSISTENTLY used for an extended period of time. It keeps water SUPERRRR cold and it’s like indestructible and sleek and I’m IN LOVE WITH IT. However, I’ve taken this poor little water bottle through the wringer. It’s all scratched up on the sides (because I’m a klutz and constantly drop it) and a little dented on the bottom. Basically, this little water bottle savior needed a little bit of a break and I found another Swell bottle at Starbucks (for half off!) so I bought it. It’s again, the perfect water bottle, but floral this time!!
Of course on of my New Year’s goals or resolutions or intentions or whatever you want to call them is to hydrate more. Since I’ve had the Swell bottle that Kyle bought me, I HAVE NOT PURCHASED ONE BOTTLED WATER. I’ll repeat that: ME, EMMA RITTER, A SINGER, WHO LIIIIIIVES FOR HYDRATION AND THE CONVENIENCE OF BOTTLED WATER HAS NOT PURCHASED ONE PLASTIC BOTTLE OF WATER SINCE SEPTEMBER OF 2016. Like WHAT ELSE do you NEED?? I HIGHLY recommend y’all grab one.
Aaaaaaaand the very last thing I do before/during the New Year, is plan out what my resolutions will be. I KNOW that sometimes resolutions are a toxic thing for some people. Once upon a time, I was definitely one of those girls who would make resolutions to lose weight or to diet or whatever. I haven’t made resolutions to make myself smaller since I was 16. Instead, I see resolutions a little differently now. I see them as goals and aspirations to try and become a better me. While I have a list (watch all the Oscar nominated films, read more books by marginalized authors…), my main goal for this year is to create a morning ritual.
My fiancé is SUCH a morning person, and I’m sloooooowlyyyyy coming along to the idea of it and the enjoyment of my mornings. In graduate school, mornings were always kind of stressful, because I was exhausted from the night before and I’d over sleep and be pressed for time and feel gross and UGH, you know? My goal for this year is to wake up at a decent time consistently. I’m not completely writing out sleeping in (in fact I’ve already slept in a few times this year oops), but I’m aiming more for creating a sacred time for myself in the mornings that make me excited to get out of bed.
Right now, I’m dedicating some of my time in the morning to writing, reading, meditating, moving my body in a joyful way, and actually eating breakfast. I’ll keep ya updated on how it goes throughout the year, but I’m excited to utilize our cute desk/office space in our dining room more for these morning times.
HAPPY NEW YEAR, CRICKETS!
I hope you all had safe and happy holidays. Thanks for sticking with me for almost two years as I’ve bounced around from different blogging platforms and all that jazz. I really love sharing these posts with y’all and creating conversations and new friendships through this blog. Another goal I have for this year, is to post AT LEAST once a week. Sundays tend to by my heart days–so expect another post on Sunday (if not before).
Light & Love & Fresh Starts,