Tips for a Happy, Healthy New Year


2014 is officially here. Are you ready?! I just hope 2014 doesn’t go as quickly as 2013…my mama heart might not be able to handle my sweet little boy growing that fast!

Whenever a New Year starts, I always hear about people making New Year’s Resolutions. While I do think that feeling like the New Year is a good time to re-evaluate your life and think about changes you want to make, I loved this post from my friend Holly on why resolutions won’t help you reach your goals. I think it’s important to be constantly making goals throughout the year, not beating yourself if you slip up, and realize that every new day is a chance for improvement, and that you can always change your goals. Life changes fast, and you never know what the next day will hold. With that said, I wanted to share a few tips that I’m hoping to implement throughout the year in my own life, that hopefully will help you get a good start to the New Year. At the end, I’ll be sharing some of my goals that I hope to accomplish this year.

  • Before you start your day, drink a glass of water with lemon in it. There are some seriously awesome benefits to drinking lemon water! Here’s another great article on the real benefits of lemons.
  • Call an old friend, or a family member, that you haven’t talked to in awhile
  • Have a social media fast. In a world that is constantly telling you to be connected at all times, it can be so refreshing to just shut everything off for awhile.
  • Make a goal to do some kind of physical activity a few times a week. This doesn’t mean going out and hiring a personal trainer. It can be as simple as stretching in the morning, walking a certain amount of steps, or doing 50 jumping jacks. As your endurance rises, you can adjust what you’re doing. Just remember — no matter how slow you go, you’re beating everyone on the couch!
  • Write down a list of all the things you like about yourself. If you have trouble thinking of anything, ask someone you love. Whenever you feel bad about yourself, look at the list and remember what an awesome person you already are!
  • Eliminate artificial sweeteners — anything containing sucralose, aspartame, splenda, etc….it’s just not good for you. I won’t get into it, but I guarantee if you eliminate these from your diet, you will feel better. Most products that claim to be “low calorie,” “zero calorie,” or “diet,” most likely have these ingredients in them.
  • Go outside — I’ve found that on the days that I’m feeling the crumbiest, just leaving my house and going for a walk makes a world of difference.
  • Read a book…a fun book, an informational book…whatever! Learn something new.

I also read this quote today in an article by Dieter F. Uchtdorf that I felt applicable.

We almost certainly will fail—at least in the short term. But rather than be discouraged, we can be empowered because this understanding removes the pressure of being perfect right now. It acknowledges from the beginning that at one time or another, we may fall short. Knowing this up front takes away much of the surprise and discouragement of failure.

When we approach our goals this way, failure doesn’t have to limit us. Remember, even if we fail to reach our ultimate, desired destination right away, we will have made progress along the road that will lead to it.

Now, for my goals:


If you’ve been reading Clarks Condensed for awhile, you know that awhile back, I started a challenge with some friends all about getting healthier. Well, the holidays came, and I just kind of stopped that. I know, silly. But I’m more motivated than ever to get back on the horse. I’ll talk more about this next week, but I’m starting the program. After researching it a good amount, it isn’t a diet plan, but something that teaches you how to eat, and is specifically designed for women who have had children. I’m really excited about it, especially because the meals are things I actually will eat, and I feel like I can easily follow it. Wish me luck (and if you have any questions about the program, let me know!)

Don't miss out!

Don’t miss our BEST posts, deals, and more!

You're almost there! Just enter your email below and you'll receive exclusive content, straight to your email. 


On another health related note, more than anything, I’d love to figure out exactly the problems Jack and I have. It’s been almost a year and a half since I went to the doctor, and pretty much, I’m more miserable than ever. As far as Jack goes, it seems like we’ve made a bit of a breakthrough, and when we control his diet, give him his medicine and his probiotics, he seems to do okay.


I feel very blessed that I’m able to be a stay-at-home mom, and that for the time being, Forrest is home a lot. This year, I’d love to take Jack to the park more and read him more books. He loves to play, so I need to get down on the ground even more and play with him. I hope to be able to go on more dates with Forrest. We often go on dates, but Jack is usually in tow…so it would be fun to be able to go out just the two of us more. I also want to make Family Home Evening and scripture study more of a priority in our family as well, especially since Jack is getting older.



Our religion and beliefs are central to our life, and I want to become an even better disciple of Jesus Christ this year. I hope to attend the temple more often, read the scriptures more, and more diligently serve in our congregation.


We are about to get into our second year of blogging, so I’ve been trying to think of what I’d like to accomplish in the next year. We’ve had a lot of success this first year, and I’m hoping that luck continues next year. Here are a few things I’ve been thinking about:

  • Doubling our page views, and all of our social media followings
  • Finish writing my eBook on pregnancy
  • Revamp our site to be more user friendly and to show off all the topics we write about
  • Attend a blog conference or two
  • At least double our blog income

Be sure to check out some of my blogger friend’s new year’s posts! Some of them shared recipes, others their goals for the New Year. You don’t regret reading them 🙂

Call Me PMC
The Haas Machine
Pint Sized Baker
It’s Yummi
Je suis alimentageuse
Wonky Wonderful
The Live-in Kitchen


All we ask is that you be kind. We welcome differing opinions, but any comments containing personal attacks, sarcasm, etc. will be removed immediately. Keyboard warriors aren’t welcome 🙂 All comments are moderated and may take time to be approved. Anything not pertaining specifically to the content of a post will be removed (including comments about ads).


Tags from the story


  • Okay seriously, where did 2013 go?! And I love what you said about your mommy heart not being able to take it. I totally feel you. My baby is growing up way too fast. I can't believe he's already 5 months when it seems he was born like a week ago! This is such a great post and I love Elder Uchdorf's quote and not being limited by our failures. So inspiring. Thanks Katie!
  • What ambitious goals! I hope that you are able to focus on one thing at a time and don't worry about doing it all. I've given up artificial sweeteners almost 6 months ago and rarely do I drink sodas and today I went shopping by myself and didn't check my email or SM for over 6 hours! It was great!
    • Haha, I'm the type of person who always loves to have lots of different things going on at once...I'm a little crazy ;-) But, luckily, I'm also the type of person who doesn't really care if I give up on a certain goal. lol. I think if more people would give up artificial sweeteners and soda, we'd have a lot less healthy problems. I gave up soda in high school and lost a lot of weight, and never looked back. We had to eliminate artificial sweeteners from jack's diet, and it proved to be a good decision for us all :) And way to go! I have to say, I love being able to just put away my phone, tablet, etc., and just get away. Glad you were able to do that today :)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.