I hope you all had a fun (and safe!) New Year's Eve yesterday. I had a low-key dinner with my family before playing board games and watching the ball drop in Times Square on television. I ended the night wrapped up in lots of blankets with a mini Law & Order: SVU marathon. I also took some time to write out my resolutions for the new year. I love the process of deciding what goals I want to achieve in the year that follows, even if I don't end up accomplishing all of them. Like many people, I struggle to keep up with resolutions for longer than a month or two, but I still hold onto the hope that this year will be different and that I will make significant progress with each one. So in keeping with the tradition, here are my resolutions for 2013. I plan to share my monthly progress with each of them this year.

1. Make healthier choices. // In years past, I have written down more specific health-related resolutions, such as "lose 30 pounds" or "go to the gym 5 days a week". It is no surprise that I was never able to keep those resolutions. They never work out well for me. So, I hope that something less specific will challenge me but not make me feel like a failure when I don't see a certain number on the scale. My plan is to make specific changes in my life rather than reach a specific goal. I want to drink more water, eat more greens, eat less sugar and red meat, try going to yoga classes, and put my gym pass to good use.

2. Read twelve non-school-related books. // With the exception of the few books I read last summer, I have really only made time to read books for classes since starting college. It has been difficult for me to justify sitting down and reading for pleasure, something I have always loved, when I have an unfinished assignment hanging over my head. This year, I really want to take the time to read at least one book per month that has nothing to do with my classes. I am planning to start with Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple and Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.

3. Stick to the "One Little Word" challenge. // It was created by Ali Edwards back in 2007, but I first read about it last summer. It is a challenge I immediately fell in love with and knew I wanted to include in my list of resolutions for 2013. This year, I decided to choose "balance" for my word. The past semester was my most stressful one yet and I have a gut feeling that the next one is going to be even more overwhelming (... and incredible, too). On top of a lot of college-related responsibilities, I also have some health problems that are brought on by stress and I want to maintain strong, healthy relationships with my family and friends. I can't think of a better word than "balance" for the year ahead of me. I know 2013 has the potential to be one of my best yet, but I am going to need to find a way to not only balance my responsibilities but also find balance within myself in order to make this year a great one.

4. Complete a "365 Day" challenge. // This is one of the more challenging resolutions I have on my list, because consistency is not something that I have always been good with. I am better now than I once was, but doing a challenge that requires me to work at it every day is going to be tough. At first, I was certain I wanted to do something related to writing - writing in a journal everyday, perhaps? But I have this complete and utter fascination with photography. I have always loved experimenting with it and learning more about it. So, I have decided to take 365 photos this year. I thought about getting more specific, maybe choosing a certain subject, but I think just taking 365 photos will be enough of a challenge for me. I will be sharing them on Instagram, but I will also be holding on to the originals to edit and share next throughout the year.

5. Learn how to better manage my money. // I have never been great about managing my money. One of the main reasons for that is because I am a big impulse buyer. If I see something I like and think I might use, I usually end up at the cash register with it in my basket. This year, I want to start keeping better track of my finances and making better decisions about how I spend and save money.

6. Complete a "Four Simple Goals" challenge each season. // In the past, the wonderful ladies of A Beautiful Mess have shared four simple goals they want to meet during various seasons (posted here and here). I have always loved those blog posts, so in addition to my resolutions for the year, I am hoping to choose four simple goals to meet each season. I am planning to post my four goals for January and February by the end of this week.

I am so excited to start tackling this (long) list of resolutions. If you post your resolutions on your blog, feel free to share a link to it. I would love to see what you are going to accomplish in 2013.

Cheers to an amazing new year full of possibilities!

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