Wood cut sign that says "breathe" in script

My Word of 2019

When did choosing a “word” to define the upcoming year become a thing?

Perhaps it has been something people have done for years, like vision boards and New Years Resolutions, but this is the year it has crept into my conscience. Truthfully, I wasn’t going to pick a word at all, until today when one bubbled to the top of my brain.


It’s a word that is undoubtedly inspired by the last month, with much of my free time spent getting organized. I’ve never been one for New Year changes or resolutions. If anything, with kids it’s often September that is time for the fresh start. But this December something shifted as if I needed to get our house, and myself, ready for the coming year.

Ready for what? That’s a good question – but to quote Bert the chimney sweep from Mary Poppins:

Winds in the east, mist coming in,
Like somethin’ is brewin’ and bout to begin.
Can’t put me finger on what lies in store,
But I fear what’s to happen all happened before.

It started with our personal finances, which I took over managing in early December – shredding years of paperwork and evaluating everything (spending, saving, borrowing, planning) got the purge started and since then no part of our home or finances has been spared my attention.

In the past four weeks, I’ve ripped through boxes and crates, organized plumbing supplies and bike parts, vacuumed up pounds of sawdust and cobwebs, slimmed down boxes of memorabilia – and generally driven everyone (specifically my husband) crazy.

With each bag of trash that has left our home, I have felt lighter. Inspired to clear out more. And determined not to bring more junk into our house, and into our lives.


To find a way to simplify our lives so I can focus on what’s important. So I can find space to breathe. So I can clear space for inspiration and creativity. So we are ready for whatever this year brings.