August 11, 2023
my word of the year (and what it was last year!)

In the spring of 2022, I was sitting at a press dinner and we were asked to think of an intention we would like to bring into our lives. At that time, we were finishing

In the spring of 2022, I was sitting at a press dinner and we were asked to think of an intention we would like to bring into our lives. At that time, we were finishing the construction of our new home, a project that at that time, had been ongoing for almost two years already, and I was definitely itching to feel settled. We had been living in a rental home during the building process, and then had to move into a new rental for just one month before moving into our new house because the lease on the original rental had run out. This dinner was during that second rental era!

Prior to that, we had bought and sold house after house, so the chance to “settle in” never really happened. It was fun though! We love a new project, so it was all by choice and welcomed. Yet, I can see how feeling settled was high on my intentions list because at that time in spring 2022, the home we had just finished building would be the EIGHTH place we’ve lived since we were married EIGHT years prior—ha! (And some of those were with two children, a cat, and a dog in tow!) I’ve always loved to move onto the next project, but at that time, I just wanted to get somewhere and stay… for good.

So, back to the dinner. It was at HART, by the way, and Hart is so wonderful about always putting meaning into her beautiful jewelry. We were each kindly gifted a necklace that Hart would be making using gemstones stones that coordinate with the intention each of us chose.

After a lot of thought, my intention was roots.

Putting roots down. It goes beyond feeling just settled, but actually putting real roots down in not only our home, but also in our community. To be involved with our children’s school, our church, treating our house as if it’s our longterm home and not a stepping stone for us, planting roots within friendships… to me, the intention of putting roots down can extend pretty far. I wanted my children to feel this, too.

And that is how my word of the year for 2022 became “roots.”  Hang with me here.. we will go back to this, I promise!

We spent the summer moving into our new home, meeting neighbors, scheduling play dates, trying out a few new churches, picking out schools for our children, and ultimately making our house a home. (A lot of projects included!)

At the end of the year, in late November 2022, I get this text message from my beautiful friend Cleere, who so kindly wrote to say she was praying for me and the word “roots” came to her mind, after I had not spoken about this being my intention for the year at all!


I mean… wild, right?!

For Christmas last year, Brandon gifted me a charm for my bracelet and it’s a tree with roots exposed. I can definitely say that 2022 was the year of us putting down our roots. Finally.


At the start of 2023, I started thinking about my word for the new year. It wasn’t a rushed process, but just something I started to consider and I knew it would come to me eventually. As I began thinking about the feeling I wanted to exude this year, the word “gentle” kept coming to my mind.


And what timing this was, because now that were feeling settled after a few years of constant stress, gentleness is what my mind, body, and soul needed above anything else. When you think about it, that word can go pretty deep. Gentle with what I eat, fueling my body with nutritious things that are gentle on my body. Gentle with my parenting …make no mistake, I still mean being firm and disciplined, but I also want my children to think back on their mom and feel that I was always gentle with them, always providing a safe and comforting space for them emotionally and physically. Gentle with my work by not taking any workload to the extreme or allowing things to completely overcome me in stress the way I’ve done in the past. Gentle with my marriage—trying to consciously keep my tone, requests, and ways of saying things in a way in which I would like them presented to me. Gentle with exercise so that I can restore my body rather than make it feel depleted. Gentle with my scheduling and not overpacking it with to-do’s for our family. It has been fitting that this word came to me in the same year we found out we were expecting our third baby.

To me, the word gentle is just a nice way of saying “kind moderation.” Doing anything in a kind sense of moderation… that’s what I mean. Nothing is perfect, there will always be slip ups, but just always trying to get back to that moderate zone has been my goal. This is a huge work in progress!



I turned 34 yesterday and I think it’s a natural feeling to examine your life and where it’s going. And as I did that, I still feel the word, “gentleness,” at the forefront of my thoughts. In many ways, I feel like I’ve done a great job exuding this word this year. In many ways I’ve failed miserably. But just like the idea of manifestation, by keeping something in your mind constantly, you’re subconsciously working towards making it a reality without even realizing it.

Do you set an intention each year? This is just my second year of doing it and I have to say, I really love it. Maybe I’ll get a new charm each year that represents my word, so that I’ll always have that reminder with me as the years pass. I definitely recommend setting an intention in your life and watching what happens!