Hi Friends! I’m Natalie Mason. I live in Charleston, SC and I am mom to Sterling 12 , Frances Moon 8 and our mini golden doodle Dolly.



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Goodbye 2020, Hello 2021

Jan 4, 2021

2020. Wow, what a year. I think in hindsight it still sort of feels like a dream to me. 2020 also felt like permanent Groundhog’s Day to me. On NYE I remember thinking, whew, I am glad this year is over, then as Evans and I went through some old photos on my phone I realized that while it was a weird year we made some pretty wonderful memories.

We laughed, we had impromptu boat days with friends since everyone was working remotely, I celebrated my 40th birthday one week after the world shut down for Covid, we cried, we ate and drank way too much, we ate more family meals together, we had fun date nights at home, I really amped up my nightly skincare routine, we learned to wear masks and accept them as our new normal, we learned to home school our kids, we learned that phone calls aren’t the same as in person but they are still important, we took short trips to Kiawah, Amelia Island and Highlands just us 4, we got a DOG (love our sweet Dolly), we rode bikes and took more walks, we watched way too much Netflix (I so miss Schitt’s Creek) and the kids had way too much screen time- but we survived!

I think what 2020 taught me most was to slow down, to have more gratitude and to appreciate the little things and special moments with family. It taught me it is ok to feel uncomfortable and down, weird times make you feel weird. Also that I am not alone in these feelings and anxieties I have, so many others feel the same way. It taught me to take each day, day by day. It taught me to give myself grace and to take it easy on myself (a battle I still struggle with) It taught me that I thrive on a schedule and need to implement that for myself daily to be the best me. It taught me that we don’t pay teachers nearly enough (don’t even get me started on Sterling’s 4th grade math that had me perplexed and stumped). It taught me healthcare workers are amazing and go above and beyond their job. It taught me everything doesn’t have to be picture perfect- that it is ok to have Christmas Eve dinner in loungewear and do what makes my little family happy. It taught me that even through pain and sadness life can still have such beautiful moments.

I will treasure 2020 for teaching me those things however I look to 2021 as a fresh start. I love a New Year and get really inspired entering into a New Year. I told my Dad last week that I was going into 2021 with very low expectations, and he said you need to change your attitude (he tells me that frequently-haha). I thought about it and he was right, the power of positive thinking and training your mind to see the good instead of bad truly works. It is something I work on daily. If I wake up anxious, frustrated, or overwhelmed I try and count to 5 with deep breaths and then name 5 things I am grateful for, it helps reset my mind. I think resetting our mindset is really important for this New Year.

In the New Year I don’t ever make resolutions, I think it is setting yourself up for disappointment however I like to set small goals for myself. I wanted to share a few things I want to change/improve in the New Year. Will I accomplish all these probably not but they are reminders of ways I want to improve.

– be less hard on myself as a parent, I beat myself up daily feeling like I am failing as parent and it is something I want to change. It consumes me at night before I go to bed rethinking how I could have been a better parent that day.

-stop comparing my life to others. Comparison is the true thief of happiness.

– tackle things I have been talking about doing for years- ie set up a spreadsheet for budgeting and taxes. I wait til the last minute to do taxes each year and if I did it monthly going forward it would make my life so much easier.

-drink more water and less wine (quarantine really upped the nightly wine intake)

-less things for my children and more experiences

-some form of exercise 5 days a week

-take more time to read

-more random acts of kindness as simple as paying for someone in the drive through behind me.

-I want to get back to church and a family Sunday ritual of that

-plant a small garden

-pickle my own veggies – I say these last two every year and never do them but maybe this year!

I also want to say a sincere thank you to all of you who read my blog and follow my family on instagram. Thank you for taking the time to tag me in recipes of mine you make, to DM me, to leave comments it all truly makes my day. I started this blog 10 years ago as a creative outlet as a new mom to Sterling and I pinch myself everyday that I am still doing it and we have this awesome community. Thank you from the bottom of my heart I love you guys! and lets all manifest that I get my act together and come out with my cookbook, 2021 is the year.

A few quotes that inspired me for 2 0 2 1

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  1. Mere says:

    Happy New Year! I’ve been a longtime reader and am carrying many of these 2021 goals with me this year, too. I loved this statement, and I’m going to remind myself of it: “weird times make you feel weird.” haha, man, 2020, what a ride!
    Wishing you all the best – we love posts like these from you!!! Cheers to 2021!

  2. Vivi says:

    “Weird times make you feel weird” and that is NORMAL. Well said. Happy New Year!

  3. mandy myers says:

    Great post Natalie!! Happy New Year!!