Musings + Essays

An Intention for the New Year.

By: Jen Shoop

*Image via Jenni Kayne.

Do you set New Year’s resolutions?

For the past many years, I have skipped the resolutions in favor of a word of intention. Most years, I have elected the word “grace” or its sister “gentleness.” Gentleness with others, with myself. I would give myself middling marks in this effort, but at least the word represents a clear beacon, a north star, against which to measure and orient my movements.

This year, I’ve chosen the word “flow” as my 2023 intention. As in: let things happen. Let things breathe. Accept and accommodate. Sometimes I feel I screw myself up into the wildest of contortions dodging an emotion or ducking from an interaction. This year I just want to sit in the middle of it all. If it comes, let it come. If it goes, let it go. I recently heard someone share the analogy of a pond vs. a stream — a pond can grow murky and mucky with stagnation. Things sit and rot and stew. A stream, on the other hand, is ever-clear, ever-clean, as it is in constant motion. I’m after the cleanse of movement.

There are so many examples I could point to (including ones far meatier than the proceeding), but a narrow and physical manifestation I’m sure many of you will relate to: have you ever been at a party or at a school event, and you see someone you know (sort of) and you have that moment of internal conflict about whether to proactively go and say good morning or sit there fidgeting until you make eye contact? And sometimes the other person won’t make eye contact? Or you feel for some illogical, anti-social reason like you want to busy yourself with your phone or bag? I’m tired of that. I am resolved to make eye contact and say hello and dispel the fraught moment. Or not, and make peace with not saying hello. I want to move through my day with fewer flinches and hesitations. I am inviting a shift from the dot-dot-dot of a morse code to the fluidity of a cursive. Unwind, be open. I don’t know where this intention will take me, but I have a hunch it will release me from things I need not carry.

How about you? Do you have a resolution or word of intention for 2023?


+In case you need a permission slip to let something slide today.

+A different kind of flow.

+What is the hardest part of your day?

+What does it mean, to answer for yourself?

+When did you meet your best friends?

Shopping Break.

+Love this festive red sweater dress — $60!

+Perfect to pair with this red-trim crystal embellished clutch from Pam Munson.

+At the last minute (just under the wire) ordered these tartan jammies and this matching nightgown for mini and micro to wear on Christmas Eve / morning. They are an extra 60% off the sale price and will arrive in time!

+Fun addition to your front door.

+This modal cashmere turtleneck looks heavenly (so soft!) and is available in tons of colors at a great price. Perfect heavier-weight piece to wear in the depths of winter under nap dresses.

+I’ve seen several chic women wearing this Tuckernuck dress this holiday season at various events — it is even better in person than online and I regret not buying it myself.

+I did just treat myself to these feathered pajamas to wear to a holiday gathering and then on NYE (with velvet platforms and a big headband!). I have been eyeing them for years but finally found them on sale at Saks!

+These sherpa ballet flats for a little lady are beyond precious. (And chic!)

+These absurdly luxurious pajamas are on sale for 60% off.

+My favorite layering turtleneck from Ulla Johnson (you can see me in it here) is on sale for 40% off here and here.

+OK, this chic textured cardigan looks like it’s designer — Toteme meets Celine — but is under $200.

+Cutest gift for a little lady.

+Chic high-waist coated denim on sale for $110 — have heard you should take your smaller size as these run a bit big / have a fair amount of stretch.

+I dream of these Barbie-core platforms from Prada. SO epic.

+Fun NYE dress — would work with bump.

+Love these fur-trim cashmere gloves.

+Somehow this Wiggy Kit dress is 70% off — love the idea of layering over a turtleneck for winter months.

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