Friday, February 01, 2013

Breathing a Sigh of Relief....Hello, February!

ust a few somethings I picked up to go into the girls Valentine Mailboxes this year. 
I woke up this morning knowing that it was February the first, and you have absolutely no idea how happy that made me.  It didn't matter that it was still butt freezing cold outside (back to subzero temps for the next few days), or that we got another million inches of snow overnight.  What mattered is that it is NOT JANUARY ANYMORE.

Now that it is February, I begin to crawl (or claw) out of hibernation.  I'm looking forward to our new mailbox tradition that we began last year, because it's fun to see the girls excited about something.  I'm looking forward to flying out to my brother's wedding in mid-February, because it will be nice to get out of  the north pole (pray that the flight gets out) for a while.

I've been wanting to blog about a few things here and there the last few weeks and have simply been unable to find the time.  However, due to my new abundance theme, I am grateful for my lack of time.  It means I am spending less time being depressed in bed, because I have things to do and places to go.

(Insert smooth transition into the next, sort-of related topic which I am too lazy to figure out right now.)

Last Friday, I watched a live masterclass given by world-class mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato.  I was very inspired by it in my professional life, but she said something that resonated with me in ALL areas of my life, and it is exactly what I was trying to say when I chose my word (Abundance) for 2013.

"I prefer to spend more time strengthening my strengths rather than conquering my weaknesses (within reason)."
                                                 ~Joyce DiDonato
Do you not LOVE that?  She was speaking about her strengths and weaknesses as a musician and performer, but this is how we must approach life.

So, in the week since watching that class I have thought mightily on what my strengths are.  For instance: I have very perfectionistic tendencies.  Rather than see that as a weakness, I am choosing to see it for the strength that it is, without letting it become a weakness.

I cannot keep my house perfectly clean right now.  It is a virtual impossibility with four other, much-less-perfectionistic-where-the-house-is-concerned people living here.  But, I can be perfect in a few areas, and I chose my office, my bedroom, and the living room.  This is not overwhelming, and those are areas that tend to get out of control really fast while I am worrying about the rest of the house. 

The kitchen just doesn't stay clean unless we decide to fast for three days.  So, I am allowing myself to be okay with a less-than-perfect kitchen.  Instead, I am going to be perfect at doing the dishes for a half-hour every day when I get home from work.  Sometimes this equals getting them all done, sometimes it doesn't.  It all depends on what the Maestro decided to make for dinner or breakfast.  But I can stay on top of it, I am still being "perfect" when I put in my 30 minutes, and I can walk away from the rest.

The list goes on, and encompasses more areas of my life than just housework, I promise.  But I am finding that by focusing on my strengths I am happier.  Maybe because I'm letting my weaknesses, and the inner voice which constantly recites them to me, fade into the background.  I don't know.  But I'm happier, and that is a good thing.

So here's to strengthening our strengths.

And here's to February!

Here, here!
Lara Neves
Lara Neves

Lara is mom to three daughters—two teens and a tween. She loves to share her parenting and homemaking triumphs and failures here at Overstuffed! She was diagnosed with Lyme disease in 2015 and has been fighting it ever since. When she isn't working on her mother of the year award, you can find her reading, singing, or taking photos.


  1. So glad you are feeling good, February is my least favorite month so I am hunkering down for the long haul.

  2. February also brings the retun of Smash! Something else to look forward to!

  3. How cute! Valentines Day is so fun because it isn't so involved as Christmas and stressful! Chris and I were laughing at Target tonight because a section of V-day stuffed looks like it was designed by guys. Maybe they're trying to broaden their horizons? Who knows.

  4. Thank you for this blog post! My friend, who is the 3rd picture on your top row (sweetheart with the brown hair and warm smile)sent me here after my most recent post.

    Love it! You've got another follower.

    Jeri (Hey, Nellie!)

  5. Thank you for sharing this! I love the quote. I, too, hate January and look forward to February every year.

  6. This is what I'm trying to do, too. I'm a major perfectionist and it's been really hard to let go of the "all" and work on a "little at a time." But I feel happier accepting certain things and just making it through.

    Hooray for February!!!