Resolution 1: Become a more skilled and patient baker.
After three long weeks, Scarlet is back in school and I’m back to work. Luckily I can do things like bake all day and call it “work.” I’ve always been more of a “cook” and less of a baker, because I have neither the patience nor obsessive attention to detail of my cohort Jacinda (world’s best baker). Thanks to my resolution to become patient while learning my way around a packet of yeast, I’ve become obsessed with baking bread, which is totally contradictory to my resolution to eat better, but whatever. Fresh bread trumps all. I tried to improve upon my mom’s classic monkey bread recipe (seen rising above), and while I can’t say it’s necessarily better, I did put a fun twist on it, the recipe for which I will share next week.

I also finally got into baking no-knead bread that rises overnight, seen below. This is so simple and INSANE DELICIOUS with a crispy-crackily crust and thick, chewy insides. It’s a new staple in this house. Have y’all seen this type of recipe enough or would you like to see a step-by-step for my method?

Resolution #2: Begin reading the classics to Scarlet.
When I am not stuffing my face full of bread, this has been my favorite and most rewarding resolution. Scarlet is a voracious consumer of books, but at “four-and-three-quarters” she is not quite ready to snuggle up alone reading long form chapter books to herself. I decided that I would pick a classic volume that I think she could understand and replace one of her three bedtime stories each night with one chapter. We began with Frances Hodgson Burnett’s A Little Princess. These Puffin Classics are so beautiful, I am looking forward to collecting them all as we read.

I think next up will be Anne of Green Gables.

Resolution #3: Become a more skilled and patient eater.
I’m turning 35 this weekend, and feel it’s time to up my healthy quotient and work on a plan for my own longevity. Which, for me, really comes down to discipline. I’ve set myself up with a healthy eating plan (basically, I’m going the tried-and-true weight-watchers style route of eating a little less junk and a lot more good stuff while paying attention to everything that goes in my mouth). I actually started this one before the holidays and I’m proud to say I’ve dropped eight pounds since mid-november. Next up is sticking with the healthy eating, and getting a workout regimen in place. I must remember my own advice: Discipline in your mind, extravagance in your heart.
Easier said than done, but I have found that once you commit, it gets easier with each passing day. If y’all are at all interested in this, I could post more about it or maybe we could do some kind of club or circle of encouragement.

Resolution #4: Learn more about music with Scarlet.
I am tone deaf. It’s always been a great desire of mine to be able to sing, but alas I was not born with that particular talent. One year I will make it a resolution to really learn to sing, like in front of other people with sounds that don’t hurt their ears, and actually take lessons. I will, but not this year. As it turns out, my daughter is actually not tone-deaf and appears to maybe have some musical skill, or at the very least, musical leanings. So I want to take her to see more live music shows (she loves The Hollow Trees so much), to a children’s symphony performance, and listen to music more at home. My hope is that by this summer she may have an idea of what instrument she most wants to learn, and I can find a way to sign her up for lessons. In the meantime, this toy, a Christmas gift from her beloved Meemah, has been an AMAZING learning experience for both of us. It’s called the Symphony in B, and what it does it play a song using whatever instruments you put into the “orchestra pit” – so it allows you to understand what each instrument sounds like and what it contributes to a piece of music. Scarlet loves this toy, but I might actually enjoy it even more.
And just FYI, every two-year-old that comes over is obsessed with it. OBSESSED.

Resolution #5: Learn how to do eye make up.
This is a pretty silly resolution, but I’ve always wanted to know how to put on eyeshadow properly. I got this Urban Decay Smoked Eyeshadow Palette as a holiday gift and it came with a book of instructions.

I’ve been playing around with it, and I love it! The step-by-step illustrated instructions really, really help. Is it lame of me to post a photo of my smokey-eye practice session? And say that I am kind of impressed that I did this myself? If so, scroll down really fast.

I can’t be the only woman who never learned how to do her eyeshadow? Maybe I should do some videos for newbies so you can all laugh at my make-up-putting-on-face, ha.

Resolution #6: Clean out and organize my office/craft room/repository of crap.
THIS ONE IS DONE. OMG, if you follow me on instagram, you have seen some work-in-progress photos. Well, the work is done. All will be revealed on Prudent Baby in the coming weeks. I CANNOT WAIT to show you what I’ve done. There is literally not a single craft supply un-boxed, not a single box un-labeled, not a single stray brad, pin, or fabric scrap. I FEEL LIKE A NEW PERSON. This also means a new surge of creativity, and lots of new tutes to come on PB.

Resolution #7: Spend more quality time with the hus.
I have made no progress on this one yet. TBD…

Resolution #8: Spend more time outside.
It’s beautiful out there.

So there you have it, the inner workings of my mind for the beginning of 2013. I think it’s gonna be a good year. Wish me luck! If you want to see what my 2012 was all about, click here. Now tell me, what’s on your agenda for the new year?

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