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Deuce Cities Henhouse

Looking Back – Looking Ahead

So, I usually don’t do New Year’s resolutions, or year in review type posts. Most years I usually feel pretty satisfied looking back, but this year, I feel like I really conquered some big things and I have some big goals for next year too.

I’ll start with the accomplishments from 2013 I’m most excited about.

Weight Loss / Life Habits
The 2013 accomplishment I am most proud of changing in my life is my weight and health. I knew I was unhappy living with my extra L-Bs, but I didn’t realize how unhappy I was and how much I devalued myself because of it. Obviously, the weight wasn’t the main issue – my self-confidence and self-appreciation were all tied into the same problem.

This year in June, it really hit me like a ton of bricks that I was unhappy with my health and my weight, and even though I always knew how to go about losing weight, it became really clear to me. I realized that if I just made a commitment to exercise and watch what I was putting into my body everyday, that there was no way around it, I would lose weight, and I would be the happier healthier person I knew I could be. It began instantaneously, I was committed, the switch had been flipped, I was going to do it, there was no other option. It was my Forrest Gump-running endlessly across America moment, but instead of runn-ing, I walked, and I walked, and I walked.

I love walking! At first I just walked at a regular pace and made sure I got a few miles in, but as time went on I started to walk faster and faster. Now I am totally one of those crazy-looking power walkers, but I don’t care. I love it, and I hate running, so there. Over the summer and fall I walked between 3 and 4.5 miles every morning. I discovered that Lake Harriet is an amazing place and that it makes me happy to be near it. A walk around the lake makes the entire day better.

I’m not a saint when it comes to eating healthy all the time, and I’m sucker for a few beers or cocktails on many occasions, but I’ve learned so much about making healthy habits – having the CSA this summer really taught me to make healthy choices that I continue to make in my life now.

I am still walking every day, you guys! It’s one of my favorite things, it’s brought a lot of peace to my life, and it has become something that I yearn for when I don’t get out for a day or two. These days (it’s -12º as I type this) I’ve had to take my walking indoors, and have been getting up at 5:30 am to get 3 miles in at the gym before the kids wake up. The gym is not as enjoyable as walking outside, but I still need to do it, and it still makes me feel good. I can’t wait for March and daylight savings and early morning lake walks again. I even started doing yoga, which has helped a lot with my anxiety, something that I’ve always struggled with.

Here’s the stats, Since July 1st I’ve walked 1,133.13 miles, have lost nearly 25lbs, and my legs are cut like knives. I feel pretty tyte about it. The best part is that I’m going to keep this habit up, hopefully for the rest of my life.

Here’s a little kitchen sneak peek for ya

Okay guys, I know I haven’t posted about the kitchen yet, but it’s coming, I promise. This was my first really big home improvement project. Everything else has been pretty simple and I’ve spent most of the time just making my house look prettier. This was the first real DIY renovation.

I’ve learned so much throughout the course of the project. First, I learned that you can figure out how to do big projects yourself, if you’re willing to do the research and put in the elbow grease. I figured out how to remove old backsplash, repair drywall and plaster, tile, grout and caulk, replace electrical switches and fixtures, use a circular saw like a bawse, and install counters and cabinets. Most of all I’ve learned to follow through on big ideas. There is nothing better than walking into my new favorite space in the house every day and knowing that I personally made it better.

Quality Fam Time Life/Work Balance
It only took 6 years or so, but I feel like Jeff and I have finally made it through to the other side of “The Struggle”. Having kids is an all-consuming lifestyle choice, as many of you know. We had our first when we were 26, at the same time that Jeff was just starting grad school. This meant working opposite schedules so that little Finn could have supervision at all times. It was so insanely crazy, and then you get even crazier and add another human being (Gus) onto the pile, and you extend your intense times by another couple of years. Having our youngest turn 2 marked a big milestone for us – he was now old enough to be trusted out at restaurants, he can climb in and out of his car seats on his own, he can entertain himself, he talks, he’s funny, and he loves to play with his bro. Our life is much calmer and we are able to slow down and just enjoy being together. Our schedules are now pretty normal, and we are finally at a place where there is a bit of a cushion and we can afford to have some life experiences together as a family. It feels so good to have made it through to the other side. I am so thankful that we made it here.

So now that I’ve looked back, I have to look forward. Like I said, I’m not one for resolutions but this year, I’ve started to stack up a few. Putting these 2014 goals out there ON THE INTERNET is another way to hold myself accountable. By making it public, it makes it real.

Cleaning Records
My dad, a big time audiophile, is going to be happy to hear this one. Jeff and I have a pretty decent record collection and have really filled it in over the last year or two by investing in some key jamz. With that said, we totally treat our records like shit. We’re notorious for having late night dance parties where records get thrown about and nothing gets put back properly for days. That stops now! We have promised that we will put our records away, dust and clean them, and start treating them like they are our favorite earthly possession. Cause they are.

General Do-Gooding
Charity. Do on to others, the golden rule. Uh, we gotta start doing that more over here, because right now, I feel like we don’t do it at all, and that is not tyte. I want to get the boys involved in doing something that gives back to their community. They need to understand that it’s not all about Mario and Legos. We need to start giving time and money to places that take care of the poor in our city and on a bigger scale places that take care of our environment and our world. This needs to happen.

Social Media Anxiety
As a blogger that loves her blog and spends most of my time thinking about it, working on it, and tailoring it to be just how I want it, I should probably give a shit about networking and hanging out there on the big old internet. Not as a popularity contest, but as a way to give this blog that I love a chance at being read by other people. This is a place for me, and all the things I love and care about, but it’s not as fun without you guys here to share with me.

For someone who puts herself out on the internet multiple times a week, you wouldn’t think I’d be afraid of talking on the internet on Twitter and Facebook. But I am. I totally am. In real life, I have some good-old social anxiety issues. I’ve been known to look for exits in new social situations and my palms get sweaty and my heart races out of my chest. That reaction doesn’t stop at the internet. Here on the blog its different, because it’s my personal space, but out there on Twitter and Facebook it’s scary. My face goes flush every time I get close to posting something, I worry about people judging me and naysayers, I know, I am a scardey cat. I need to do better, and spend more time reaching out to all you guys, who have been awesome and spend time here, reaching out to me through comments. I like you guys, and I want to hang with you out there, on THE NET too. So if you feel like it, follow me along, I’ll follow you back, and we’ll all be friends, cool? I’m scared, but I’m gonna do it.

Hope you all had a sweet 2013, and Happy New Year, you guys!

in My Life
33 comments… add one
  • Shannon December 31, 2013

    Hi, I’ve been the silent follower for the past year I think? I love your house and the fact your in Minneapolis (grew up in the cities and recently moved back). And you’re totally inspiring my future dream house. I started walking to work (a bit over a mile) in the fall and still am in the cold! I wasn’t expecting my body too change much from the short hike, but my legs are so much better! Knowing someone else noticed the same from just walking helps me know I’m not delusional. I’m awful at online networking too but I would love to follow your pursuits! Happy New year!

    • Scoops December 31, 2013

      Hey Shannon,

      Thanks for leaving a comment! Yeah, Minneapolis is the best isn’t it? Even if it’s -10 on new year’s ever, whatever, right? It’s all part of the charm.

      Walks just make sense for some of us, and they totally have an effect. Good easy exercise!

      Thanks for saying “Hi”!

      Happy New Year!

  • Elizabeth December 31, 2013

    Just so you know, your blog immediately became of my favorites! I started following when you had a Sneak Peek on Design Sponge. I want to comment on everything you do in spastic, excited run on sentences (I have a few times), but I’m also a big weirdo when it comes to anxiety and being social in any way, shape or form ;) We are at a totally similar place in life, which is why I enjoy your posts so much!! …I also have 2 small kids, stay home (DIY’ing/decorating my life away) and watch a friend’s little son. My husband and I are renovating a totally quirky 1920’s bungalow room by room. Happy New Year!!! I can’t wait to see your finished “new” kitchen! (We finished ours last year.) Your style and ambition is a million different kinds of awesome! …Oh, and I also think it’s amazing that you do all that yourself…my husband is a construction dude, so I leave all the dirty/hard work to him! You are rather inspirational :)

    • Scoops December 31, 2013

      Elizabeth! Thanks so much! I am the queen of run on sentences, if you haven’t noticed, so please feel to include yours run-ons here too ;)

      It does sound like we have mirror lives, only I wish I had a handy husband to boss around when it comes to the hard stuff.

      Happy New Year to you too!

      • Elizabeth January 1, 2014

        I’m also fairly certain that we live in the same neighborhood of S Mpls…and no…I’m totally not a stalker ;) Maybe we’ll run into each other sometime!

  • Courtney December 31, 2013

    Just want to say I love your blog – you have a way of inspiring while keeping it real at the same time. Your kitchen looks fab, congrats on all of your incredible life changes and I look forward to more of your posts in 2014. Thanks & happy new year!

    • Scoops December 31, 2013

      Thanks so much, that’s a really sweet thing to say, “a way of inspiring while keeping it real” – I think that could be my motto. Happy New Year to you too!

  • Anne@PotatoCakeVintage December 31, 2013

    Your kitchen sneak peek is gorgeous!! So impressive. (Also: amazing styling!)

    • Scoops December 31, 2013

      Thanks! My good pal Nicole Ripplinger (of Middle North Creative) was in charge of all the styling, I was just her photographer and assistant ;)

      Happy New Year!

  • Molly December 31, 2013

    Congratulations on a successful 2013. Your commitment to walking, weight-loss and kitchen makeover are all amazing and so inspiring. Keep up the good work and kick-butt in 2014!

    • Scoops December 31, 2013

      Thank you Molly! Happy 2014 to you!

  • Katie J December 31, 2013

    Got a little weepy eyed reading this, Scoops. Happy New Year to you and your totally tyte fam. We love you so much!

    • Scoops December 31, 2013

      Happy New Year to you too, you crazy lady! Can’t wait for our NYE facetime sesh taking place in about 1.75 hours!

      Love you guys.

  • Lori December 31, 2013

    Happy New Year! I started following after your feature on 6th St. I’ve commented a few times too (which gives me total anxiety, but you answered each comment like we were buds, which was just great!). I’ve enjoyed following along with your walking and weight loss and the kitchen remodel. The fact your kitchen was a process is so refreshing! I started a blog for my business (as a designer) but am terrified to post anything because my little rental is not all that gorg right now. I made my mind up earlier today to say to hell with it and go for it. Just try to be real and maybe show people that for most of us, your house won’t look like a show house right after you move in. I’m just scared of putting myself out there…so I feel you on that :).

    Hope you have a great new year and I’m looking forward to following along. I’m seriously giddy over any future garden posts :)

    • Scoops January 2, 2014

      Hey Lori! I’m glad to hear you posted on your new blog. All my favorite blogs are ones that start out with nothing and show the process of putting something together and making it amazing. I think it’s good that you started at square one, and your readers will like to know that they followed along from the beginning and saw it all the way through. Good for you!

      Happy New Year to you too! I can’t wait for the garden posts, I can’t even let my brain go there yet – too soon.

  • Erika December 31, 2013

    I’m super impressed with everything you do! I hope 2014 is another great year for you and who knows, maybe this will be the year we actually meet in person?! I can’t wait to back around that old lake now that I’m not preggo…I’m gonna look for you!

    • Scoops January 2, 2014

      Hey Erika! Yes someday we will meet in person and it will be cool. I hope your year is fantastico too! That little Francois is so adorable, and I am so jealous of your 3 boys – that’s so amazing to have all those brothers! I used to think I would want a girl, but after having the 2 boys, I don’t know what I would do with a girl, there is something just so special about brothers. Congratulations to you again, and I’ll keep my eyes peeled for you out at the lake!

  • carol pulitzer January 1, 2014

    Scoop, thank you for this. I’m 67 and the switch still has not flipped; that doesn’t mean I’ve given up. This post is inspiring, I’m going for a walk.

    • Scoops January 2, 2014

      Yeah Carol! Do it, walks are a great way to just make your day feel better, whether you get out all the time or not!

  • Belinda January 2, 2014

    Congrats on an amazing year! Love checking in on your lovely home and cool ideas. I have made a New Years resolution to do more to get our home finished… well a few rooms hopefully including updating our 4.5 year olds bedroom to be more ‘big kid’… mainly inspired by your blog! Would love to see more of your boys room especially that amazing bunk bed.
    Much love and sunshine from Australia :)

    • Scoops January 2, 2014

      Hey Belinda! I hear you guys are having a heat wave down there in Australia – stay cool! Good luck on your big kid room – sounds like a good (and fun) resolution. I’m in the process of working on our guys’ room too, I don’t have a huge budget for it, so not a lot has changed besides adding the bunkbed. I’ve recently started reorganizing the space and purging the old little kid stuff. I’ll post on it soon, so I can share with you – even though the changes won’t be that dramatic! Happy New Year!

  • jessica January 3, 2014

    Happy New Year! I have anxiety as well but I force myself to post on Facebook a couple times a week. It keeps me in touch with my loved ones and if someone gets snarky I just delete them as friends. HA just kidding…kind of. Anyway, I think you’re great and feel like we could be friends if we lived close. Hope next year is as amazing as the last!
    xoxo from canada.

    • Scoops January 3, 2014

      Happy New Year to you too! Anxiety is the worst, I wish I could just turn it off somehow, but I can’t. It’s nearly impossible to overcome too, but I am trying. Thank you so much for hanging out with me here on the internet over the last year, we would be friends in real life!

  • Jane January 5, 2014

    Your blog is one of my favorites! Happy new year!

    • Scoops January 7, 2014

      Thanks Jane! Happy New Year to you too!

  • Just found you today through Design Sponge, and I LOVE your voice! So happy to have found you. Keep up the awesome work!

    • Scoops January 10, 2014

      Thanks Abby, what a great compliment. I’m glad I have a voice that stands out to you, I try hard to write posts like I’m talking to all of my friends. Hope to see you back around these parts!

  • Helen Robinson January 20, 2014

    Just found you via Dana Miller at House Tweaking. Im based in the UK which just shows you that good style travels far! I’m a huge fan already and working my way thorugh your previous posts,very inspiring I must say :o)

    I’m loving your past year revelation about your weight and feeling unhappy in your skin…I have finally ralised that after having kids I need to do something to make myself feel better, let alone look better! walking is the way forward me thinks…..so off I go, le’ts see where it takes me.

    Looking forward to your next post muchly! x

    • Scoops January 21, 2014

      Hi Helen! Yes, I’m so happy for you! I think realizing that you want something different for your life is 99% of the battle when it comes to losing weight and getting fit. Once it’s a decision you have made for yourself you’ll be able to follow through. I know it’s hard to stay focused and motivated some days, but the more you do it, the easier and more natural it becomes. When I started walking, a friend told me it takes 28 continuous days to make a habit. I focused on that, and got through the first month. Before you knew it, walking daily became easy. You’ll feel so thrilled with yourself if you can get through that first month. I’m routing for you from all the way over here!

  • lydia January 30, 2014

    yeah! you rule! like helen up there i discovered your blog(s!) via house tweaking earlier this week. i found myself reading a bunch of your old ‘party’ blog and then i added you all over the internets – creep style. the things you write about and share are awesome. travel! midwest living! (i’m smack-dab between mke & chicago myself) beautiful 100 year old home! flowers! music! i love it all! HAPPY 2014 to you and the fam, looking forward to reading more! p.s. i feel you on the social media anxiety part – it took me about 4 hours to finally finish this note to you while i worked in other browser tabs today :]

    • Scoops January 31, 2014

      Ha, that is awesome that you made it back to my party blog! A little embarrassing for me, but at the time I really loved that funny blog. Happy to know a fellow midwestern old house dweller, and so glad you left a comment! I feel your anxiety pain, I won’t ever judge (that’s always my fear), so feel free to comment often and we will hang out on the internet!

  • Vanessa March 14, 2014

    Hey Scoops, I have anxiety too and it is such a waste of time. I mean that literally, the hours, minutes, days when I was so self-focused because of that. A waste. I am happy to report that it changes as you get older, sometimes I can catch and work with it and recover quickly. It is just a series of chemical reactions that take place in the body and when I say “oh, this change is happening, just feel it and don’t shy away” – then it’s over quickly. Some of the strength is gone. Finally, (and this is preachy) when I gave up wheat a lot of things shifted slightly in a more stable direction.

    • Scoops March 14, 2014

      I know, I am trying so hard. It’s been much more under control since I started walking, but there are def triggers for it, and usually wants it starts it’s so hard for me to get control of it. It’s such a horrible thing to live with, it’s nice to chat with others who feel the same way. Thanks :)

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