Close Your Eyes


Take a moment and try something with me. And I promise, only a moment, this excercise should take you all of 1 minute.

Take a big breath, exhale, and close your eyes. Now, picture your future. Remember only take  a minute or less. What do you see? What is the first thing that comes to your mind?

December flew by in a whirlwind of pine and peppermint scented flashes. It was one of my best Christmas seasons to date and I tried to lick up and savor every little moment. In fact, this whole year has been pretty spectacular.  On Friday, I posted about my top 5 memories. Yet, I’m finding myself in an all to familiar state of mind on this second to last day of 2013.

Where have I been and where am I going?

This week between Christmas and New Years provides amble time for reflection. Honestly, I’ve been pretty down these past few days. Call me out for being a baby, but I’m so sad December is over. You see, all of the anticipation, joy, and love that surrounds Christmas fills me with hope. Hope that the future is bright. Hope in the power of love. Even when I would be feeling knocked down at work, or when I would feel the stress of bills and money being tight, the thought of going home to my tree or looking forward to a family tradition or gathering would get me through the day.

I wallowed a bit more than I’d like to admit this weekend. With the magic of December fading away, I felt like we were getting stuck back in the daily grind. Ryan going back to his night-time law school classes (1.5 more years sounds both short and long), saving money, and getting through the stressful days. But like most good wallowing it allowed me to reflect and look ahead to the New Year.

Ah yes, that time when we all make grand New Years Resolutions. Well, I’m not a fan of New Year’s resolutions. They are empty promises. I think going to the gym on January 2 and then going again on February 2 will prove my point.

Instead, I like to keep things simple.  And by simple, I mean breaking down your life into what makes you happy and what makes you unhappy. Why not choose happy?

home ryan and katie

The question, “What are your plans for the future?” has the tendency to make my heart rate go up and my palms sweat. We are trained to look at our life in 5 year increments. Our future looks like a tall ladder with rungs marked with stages like “Graduate”, “Find your perfect career” “Get married” “Buy a house” “Kids” “Retire”. Really, none of us has a clue. You can’t plan out this life.

What you can do is have hopes. I choose to hold on to my hopes as I navigate through this messy life. My hopes are what make me happy, what get me through the day.

This is what I seen when I close my eyes and think of the future:

Ryan, myself, a dog, and an undisclosed amount of children (sometimes it’s 2 sometimes it’s 3) lying in a big bed with the fluffiest white pillows and softest white sheets you’ve ever seen. My vision is in black and white and we are surrounded by photos of family and dear friends.

That’s it.

Everything that is important to me is in and surrounding that bed. Plain and Simple.

Who knows when that image will become my reality. This year?  The next? Five years from now? Nevertheless, that is my hope for the future, that is what makes me happy. That image will replace my beloved Christmas tree, music, traditions. I choose to carry the joy and hope that Christmas brings with me through the year. What I see when I close my eyes will be my beacon – my north star guiding me to stay on track to my future. Why put off happiness?

Because, it’s time to face the music. Today IS yesterday’s future and I’m ready to choose happy, no matter what.

xoxo katie




  • I was just thinking how I want to download Little Drummer Boy on my phone so that it plays year round and reminds me of the joy, hope, and power that Christmas holds for us… Then you went and spilled my heart out onto your blog like no body’s business. Much love and adoration for you!

    • kwalshmac

      Thank you Amber – it seems a shame to only celebrate and remember all the hope Christmas gives us only one month out of the year. Why waste all that potential?

  • I don’t really believe in resolutions either, but I’m breaking my own rules and making a few simple ones this year. At least at this point in my life, it’s easier for me to make resolutions than it is to think about the future, because it’s so up in the air right now. Sometime in the next six months, hopefully my husband will graduate with his Ph.D. Hopefully he’ll find a job. Hopefully we’ll be moving. But we don’t know where or when or what any of that will be, and I’m tired of stressing about it. So I choose to be happy too, by not thinking about it. 🙂

    • kwalshmac

      Oh Allie, I hear you about everything being up in the air! I’m a planner and it is SO hard for me to let go. Like you, we have no clue where we will be in 2 years once Ryan is done with law school. Staying positive and having hopes gets me through – little accomplishments go a long way! Best of luck to you two!!

  • Christmas is so lovely and your right all the little traditions that come with it just make it all the more fun to look forward to NEXT year 😀
    I’m trying not to do resolutions but every time I think of what I want to accomplish in this new/next year leads me to thinking of thinks to promise myself I’ll do. But then I should be doing it anyway – why do I need a new year to make me change something…
    Lovely post!!! You could always do Christmas in July 😉

    • kwalshmac

      Thank you! Yes, it’s too bad we need this arbituary date of January 1 to make us make some positive changes – but alas traditions get us through the years, right?! I wish you only the best in the New Year! And believe me….I’m already picking out fun things for Christmas 2014! haha!

  • Such a beautiful post, Katie! Thanks for sharing.:) After all I’ve been through over the past few years, I don’t make new years’ resolutions. Life can change in the blink of an eye and we don’t know what the future holds so I’m living in the moment, the here and now. For 2014, I’ll be taking things one day at a time and doing whatever makes me happy! Happy 2014 to you and Ryan! – Donna

    • kwalshmac

      Thank you, Donna! That’s great that you live in the moment, I admire your ability to stay in the present. I try SO hard and somehow my mind always navigates to a year or two from now. I wish you a very HAPPY new year full of everything that brings you joy!

  • Pingback: I got to have a little RESPECT | A Beautiful Little Adventure()