The Year of Cultivation (and the New Name)

Hey World,

First of all - Cheers! It's 2017!

I sat down and tried to write this post at least a half dozen times, but each draft never quite captured what I wanted to share. I knew I didn't want to talk about what all happened in 2016, because I (randomly) do my annual recaps in the summertime. 

I also knew I didn't really want to talk about what 2017 is going to hold, because we're only 4 days in and I can't really be too certain about anything (other than the fact that we are definitively out of food in the fridge & this season of the Bachelor is definitely going to be dra-ma-tic).

At the same time, a new year is a lot like a fresh start because it feels new. Every time you write the date, you have to make sure you put a 7 not a 6! It's that kind of different.

So for the remaining four months of my Powersheets, and the rest of 2017, I want to really harness the quote above: creating a future that is kind -- to myself, my family, and to others. That's why I'm keeping my Powersheets word "cultivate" and extending it into the rest of the year! 

It's a year that will come with renewing, rejuvenating and deepening friendships and relationships as I approach the three year mark of living in Tanzania (!).

It's a year where BG & I think seriously about giving back to others consistently, not just with our time, but also financially, to organizations which we believe positively impact the lives of others.  

It's a year where I will increase my efforts on thinking diligently about what I put out into the world -- spreading positivity and good vibes at work with my team, at home with my family, and on social media. 

It's a year to close the book on things that pull me down, which means finishing my MA thesis (come hell or high water!) and making payment plans for my student loans, and spending free time on activities I love or are interested in (calligraphy, anyone?!). 

It's a year to continue chasing the dream: creating a happy married life, building up a nest-egg of savings, plotting adventures to new places, and taking steps to make the 'impossible' more possible.

Finally: 2017 is also the year of the new name. I talked about changing my last name earlier, but what I didn't share then, and have told hardly anyone, is that I added a middle name during all of the legal changes as well. Aside from my given middle name of Lynn, I added my mother’s maiden name as my second middle name! I am now officially Marisa L.B. Grimes, and couldn't be more in love with my new identity (and now the cat is out of the bag, you'll be seeing it around!)I really feel like my new name holds such weight in this new chapter of my life, and I am excited to see how 2017 will be a memorable first installment! 

Okay, seriously finally: I wrote this a few years ago in an annual recap post, but I love it so much I want to share it again:

I hope your year is a life lived with intention. 
I hope it's 12 months of contentment, or working towards it. 
 52 weeks full of personal fulfillment and growth. 
Finally, I hope this year is made up of 365 days you are grateful for. 

I wish you nothing but the best for 2017, and I sincerely believe it will be great! And if you ever need a snail-mail pick-me-up reminder, don't be afraid to ask :)


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