All Out or All In?

As we head toward the end of 2012, I tend to spend a bit more time reflecting on what the past year has held.  It usually begins with the thought “what – the year is already ending??”  Then, I tend to think back over the highlights of times I told myself that I’d get this done by the end of the month, or finish this project during the summer.  And maybe like you (or maybe not like you), I still stare at that project every time I walk into my home, garage, bedroom, kitchen….you get the point.

One thing, though, that this year has held has been a refocusing of our family time.  Both Dean and I felt very strongly at the beginning of the year that we could not go “maximum capacity” during the day every single day as we had been doing.  We had to save some of our best energies for the evening and the time we were together as a family of 5.  This meant that hard decisions had to be made to strategically invest the time of our days.  So now, at the end of the year, what results have those decisions produced?


One thing is that we are not an “all out” family anymore.  Our name isn’t on every volunteer list, our kids aren’t at every possible activity, and we aren’t striving for that next elusive goal of achievement to our family name.  Rather, we are playing more games together, hanging out together in the living room just talking, and simply allowing each of us the time to gear down and simply “be” without the added pressure of going and doing.  (And to be honest – where else will our kids learn it is okay to simply “be” – our culture doesn’t teach that anymore).

I must say, it has been a good year with this end goal in mind.  There are moments I think we should do more of this and that, but then I remember  that these children I’ve been entrusted with and this husband I have been given … they are some of the top priorities that deserve the best of my energy.  The reality of college coming to our oldest in only a few years seems to clarify a lot of things for us- namely she will be out of our nest soon, soaring on wings of her own and flying the path created for her.  I never want to look back and say “I wish I would have spent more time getting to know her…” and experiencing the regret of everything else taking all of my energies, leaving none for those closest to me.

What about you – what do you reflect on at the end of each year?  Ready to make some changes for 2013?


5 thoughts on “All Out or All In?

  1. Family times are the best times. I can have no more fun than I have sitting at the dinner table with our kids. That’s more challenging now with 2 out of the nest and our 3rd sure to follow in a couple of years. Good for you for finding a way to build memories together!

  2. Very well said, Daughter. Your father and I are very proud of the choices you and Dean have made in life and with family. BTW, I’m still recovering from the Minneapolis girl weekend…great memories. Love, Dad and Mom

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