Another year…

Tomorrow is my birthday! And I’m really excited with the way that this past year has really shaped up and is projecting me into the future. Here are a couple of things that I am reflecting on as I log another year in the books:

I am only capable of so much

The past few years were especially difficult for me in a lot of ways. And I was left drained and emotionally unavailable to even check on my own well-being. But as I’ve been spending more time spiritually thinking about who I am and what I’m capable of, it has been tremendously helpful to realize that I can allow myself grace and understanding. I don’t have to feel bad or guilty if I can’t get everything done every day. I can only handle so much, and if I can’t, that doesn’t mean I am “less than” or a failure. I’m just human.

Where I am now is not where I have to be forever

I am reading a book right now about the success habits of millionaires, and it is actually really enlightening. One of the best things that this book has had me do is to reevaluate where I am in life and how I got here. Then, it asks me to rewrite that story, change it to the one that I want to take forward with me into the future. It is startling in some ways to see how different my mentality about my role and responsibilities are compared to where I want to be. I am moving towards the next chapter of my life by realizing that I am completely in control of my life. It’s super exciting just to think of it that way.

What about you? Does your birthday make you reflect on things? How do you move forward to the next year?

And now, here are some gift ideas based on things I’m currently loving. Maybe you can conveniently share these with a loved one when your own birthday rolls around:

Happy Planner and notebooks

I may be slightly obsessed with these. The fact that I can customize them, move pages around, and not have to worry about binder rings not aligning correctly over time is amazing. Plus they’re so pretty! Not to mention there’s a rabbit hole full of pretty planning stickers designed just for these planners and notebooks. I use the vertical layout and separate my life into Work, Personal, and Writing sections to help me stay organized.


These are cheap and work well. They’re not waterproof, but otherwise, I love using these because they’re fine tipped and allow me to fill up my planner or journaling pages. I also use this set because you get a ton of colors, making color-coding or separating notes into easy to find chunks a lot easier.


I was so pleased with the vibrancy of these watercolors. They’re not super expensive and you get a ton of shades. I use these to splash color on my journaling pages or just to doodle/paint whenever I need a creative outlet that isn’t in the form of words.

iPad case/keyboard

I use my iPad for all of my writing and blogging. This case has been instrumental in making sure I can transport, protect, and produce no matter where I am. It comes with a Bluetooth keyboard that worked for months of daily use before needing to be recharged. The case also stands up in landscape mode, allowing me to use the screen’s real estate effectively when writing and using Scrivener.

Insulated cup

It is summer. And I am one of those lucky Californians who deals with 100+ degree temperatures every day now. This cup has been super helpful in keeping my drinks cold for a loooooong time. I use it for iced coffee and protein shakes as well as just water or iced tea.

Atlas Obsucra

I posted about this a while ago on Instagram, but it is a true treasure trove for story fodder. From unknown places, obscure items, and just great information that I wouldn’t even know to look up in the first place, I sometimes just turn to a random page and try to incorporate whatever is on that page into a story as an exercise.

Thanks for stopping by!

*post may contain affiliate links in which I may receive a small portion of qualified sales

Published by Leslie

I'm an author, teacher, wife, and mother of three who just finished an MFA program and is working on a YA fantasy novel.

One thought on “Another year…

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