Hello! I can’t believe it is already the end of January — this month has felt really long and really short at the same time. I started out the month still on my “adult winter break” from work and am ending it already have taken both my first work trip and first personal trip of the year. The year is off to a great start for me already, and I am excited for the good times to continue from here.
The weather is incredible today — it’s in the 50s and I was able to get in a long walk outside for the first time in ages. Since it’s been cold, I have been going to the gym in my apartment building four or five times a week — got to get those steps in! — but I much prefer walking outside. I love the fresh air and the change of scenery, and it’s good time to think, talk on the phone with my mom and sisters, and catch up on my favorite podcasts. I don’t know about y’all, but I find the treadmill so boring. I do it because I love the health benefits and always feel better after getting in a workout, but I, for one, am ready for spring and longer days so I can resume my after work walks.
I love pulling these life lately posts together, so I hope you enjoy — and I hope your year has been off to a great start! x
BABY’S FIRST BOTOX —
I talked about this over on Instagram Stories, but my Christmas present to myself was getting botox done for the first time. This was something I thought about for a long time, and I am really pleased with the results! I was interested in getting it done given I had started noticing fine lines on my forehead even when I wasn’t emoting. I also think I started to notice these lines much more than I might have otherwise because I spend most of my workday on Zoom calls looking at myself — when I was going to an office prior to the pandemic, I was in just as many meetings, but I didn’t stare at my face all day.
I had mine done at Integrated Dermatology on K Street by Nicole Masson, who is the PA I see for all my non-cosmetic dermatology needs as well. She is the one that found my hemochromatosis last year, so I really trust her, and I knew I personally did not want to go the med spa route for botox. I am not taking chances on my face!
For my first time, I did 25 units on her advice — 15 in my “eleven lines” area and 10 on my forehead. It took about two weeks to fully set in and should last between three and four months. I will definitely be keeping up with it!
MY FIRST WORK TRIP OF THE YEAR —
Earlier this month, my team convened in New York City for a big 2023 planning session. While we did a lot of hard work, we managed to have some fun, too! We were lucky enough to get a tour of The Ned Nomad, a gorgeous hotel and private member’s club. It recently opened after undergoing a major renovation and it is stunning. We saw several style of guest rooms, and I would love to stay there someday — it was so luxurious and cozy, and they thought of everything guests might need during their stay. We also were able to get a tour of the private members-only area and had a wonderful team happy hour there — as soon as we sat down to enjoy, they handed us champagne coupes, so you know I was in heaven.
Afterwards, we ate dinner at Cecconi’s, a great Italian spot connected directly to the hotel. We shared everything family style and it was all so good — the whipped ricotta, meatballs, tuna tartare, fresh salad, warm bread, and plenty of pastas. If you’re looking for a great restaurant in the NoMad area, I would highly recommend it — they also had a beautiful bar if you just want to stop in for a cocktail.
GETTING ORGANIZED FOR THE YEAR —
While on my aforementioned “adult winter break,” I spent a lot of time getting myself organized for the year — and there are certain things I always do at the top of the year to set myself up for success, so I wanted to share a few in case they’re helpful:
Update my Password Manager: several years ago, I set up LastPass to help me safely store my passwords and make it easier for me to enact the best practice of having a different, strong password for every login I have. Usually in January, I go through and make sure all my passwords are added in LastPass (sometimes they just get saved in Safari), delete any old passwords from accounts I no longer need, and change any passwords it recommends. For the latter, LastPass has a security checkup tool where it will tell you which passwords might have been compromised and help you automatically update any passwords you have been using for a while.
Save My Important Information: within LastPass, you have the ability to store your credit card, banking information, and important documents — like your Passport and Known Traveler ID — in encrypted notes. It’s always a best practice to have a “backup” of this information, and I love storing it on LastPass because it’s secure and I can access it on-the-go. Once a year, I go through and make sure everything is correct and update what needs to be updated — like new credit card expiration dates, and things of that nature.
Login to My Social Security Account: assuming Social Security will still be around when we retire, it’s important that they have your accurate earnings record as that impacts what benefit you will eventually receive. Your 2022 earrings record will be updated once you file taxes, but I always login at the top of the year to ensure everything looks as it should. (As an added benefit, I always find this exercise super rewarding — it’s cool to see how my salary has grown in the ten years I have been working full time!)
Backup My Photos: I backup my photos to Dropbox throughout the year, and have a developed a system to keep them extremely organized. I have a main folder for each year, subdivided into months, and then within each month, I make a new folder for each event, trip, or what have you that produces a batch of photos. I also then have a monthly folder for all the random snaps I take on my iPhone that I want to save. Once or twice a year, I go through and back my Dropbox up to an external hard drive on the off chance anything should happen to my photos in the cloud. It’s probably not necessary, but it gives me peace of mind knowing everything is saved in two places.
SPENDING MORE TIME AT HOME —
After the craziness of the holiday season, it has been so nice to have a s l o w January — I’ve been keeping my weeknights extra precious and rarely scheduling plans, which has been a nice change of pace at the top of the year. When I think back to how I structured my life pre-pandemic when I was routinely out of my house from 7am to 7pm most days, I genuinely don’t know how I did it!
I’ve been rewatching Suits and The Golden Girls most nights after getting a workout in and cooking dinner, and I just feel very content with a slower pace of life right now. I also make sure to keep my Sundays as a total reset day — I don’t make plans, I sleep in without an alarm, and I usually start the day off with a good book. It’s quickly become one of my favorite forms of self care, and I am excited to keep it up throughout the year.
That’s a little look at my life lately — I hope your year is off to a great start!