2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

How are you, friends? Have you all survived the post-holiday blues? January has been a little rough over here. We had a cold snap that lasted for two weeks straight where the temperatures didn’t rise above freezing at all. It was painful to be outside for even a couple of minutes. We’ve had several snow storms already and another one forecasted for this coming week. I am doing my best to embrace the winter and appreciate the ability to slow down and hibernate. It isn’t always easy though. I am happiest outside and I miss being able to take daily walk with my little loves.

At the end of 2017 I wrote a lot about how I had been reflecting and I shared a little bit about my hope and plans for 2018. And yet, I feel that there is a huge chunk of reflection that cannot take place until well after the holidays have passed. There is so much hustle & bustle at the end of the year and it’s not until a little ways into January, that my mind can truly slow down enough to process the enormity of the year that has passed.

2017 was a whirlwind for me in so many ways. I moved house twice. I made dramatic professional changes. I ended relationships. I began relationships. I broke and I grew and I transformed. It was a year of painful upheaval, of allowing myself to break open completely and stare hard at the contents of my soul. But at the end of the process, when I looked inside of myself — fully broken, fully raw — I found myself again. Everything that I thought that I had lost was not lost, it was sleeping. I woke up.

Every trial that I withstood in these past several years suddenly seems so worth it because I remembered who I am.

Sometime in November, I decided that I needed to take a break. My year had been so full and difficult and rewarding, and I felt myself become complete worn out. I was tired emotionally, spiritually, and physically. I took a break from everything. I allowed myself to say no, over and over and over again. I let go of any expectations that I would have normally held myself to. I almost didn’t get a Christmas tree, but then fate intervened. One thing that I never got around to was making Christmas cards. It made me sad because Christmas cards have been a favorite tradition for me since Roman was born, but I gave myself grace.

I gave myself grace over and over through November, December, and into January. It’s what I needed and I deserved it. We all deserve it. Giving myself grace is going to be an ongoing theme for me from here on out. I’ve spent a lifetime beating myself up over silly things, things I have no control over, and things that are not my fault. I am ready to stop that now.

So here you have the photo shoot that took place about a week before Christmas and the Christmas cards that never quite made it onto paper. And guess what? I don’t feel bad about that at all. Maybe next year.

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

2017 Christmas Card // livelovesimple.com

Lots of love, my dear friends. I can’t wait to see what 2018 has in store for all of us! xo

One thought on “The Christmas Card That Never Was”

  1. I feel like I’m surrounded by (blog) people who are undergoing internal changes – maybe positive energy does draw positive energy. I don’t know.
    Great post and I love your photos – it’s very warm and the facial expressions – even the dog – are beautiful. You’ve got the right idea – giving yourself grace, saying ‘no’.
    Hang in there.

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