20 Reasons to Already Love the New Year 2020 (Okay, Just 5, but Same Energy)

2020 is HERE!

Happy New Year! You’re probably just as excited as I am to ring in 2020. To get into the celebratory spirit of things, I’m listing 20 simple reasons to already love the New Year 2020. (Okay, when I started this post, I was overly ambitious. In reality, I’m sticking to 5.)

1. This is simple. It’s 2020. Who doesn’t love a repetitive number for a calendar year?

2. A full year of pun fun is on the way. May we all have clarity and 20/20 vision this year. *wink, wink*

3. 2020 is a leap year. What fun! (Okay, so maybe I was too ambitious when thinking about these reasons, but it’s a new year – and I’m no quitter.)

4. We’ve been given another chance, another fresh start in life – however symbolic it may be. Let’s make the most of it!

5. It’s up to us treat this year as one filled with opportunities, second and third chances, and undiscovered blessings – many of which we don’t even yet know about. Look forward to them.

Image of Happy New Year 2020 with golden letters and confetti with a pastel pink background

Source: metro.co.uk

2020 Resolutions & Goals

If you’re like me, resolutions may not exactly be your thing. Instead, I like to create goals & go from there. When viewing Love & Life as a journey, not a destination, it certainly feels like a more relaxed, self-accepting approach.

One 2020 goal of mine is to write more books.

Because I also have a business to run, that means that something’s got to give somewhere. My family comes first, so that’s no-negotiable. I’ve mentioned before that atinaatwood.com will be modified this year; one modification will be the frequency of my posts and engagement on social media.

In order to prioritize the continuation of my Holiday Heartbeats series, I’ll be spending more of my blogging time to, well, write. (When I put it that way, it does make sense, doesn’t it?)

For those of you who subscribe to my mailing list, no worries. You’ll be the first to receive chapter shares, get exclusive sneak peeks, and tantalizing cover reveals!

Gif of actor Bill Murray standing, smiling, and applauding enthusiastically
Source: GIPHY

Have an amazing New Year and may your positive visions this year always be 20/20!

Sending Love & Light,

Atina

©Atina Atwood 2020 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series and a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, writing. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Merry Christmas! The BEST Holiday Gift of the Season is Teaching My Child How to Give

If you haven’t yet gotten your fill of sweet Christmas stories, check out these deals for discounted Holiday-themed ebooksHis Epiphany is among them. Find more Holiday romance here.

Frohe Weihnachten!

The following is a segment that I’ve recently shared with my mailing list subscribers. I’d also like to share my experience with you:

Our family celebrates Heiligen Abend (Christmas Eve) and Christmas Day, so our little one is truly enjoying the best of both worlds. It’s wonderful to honor family traditions, and it’s especially freeing to celebrate in our own little way. The Holidays are becoming even more beautiful as we create new traditions with my Little One (now that he’s starting to understand what all of the hoopla is about!).

It’s been especially satisfying teaching him the importance of giving. As the years progress, I’ve noticed that it’s not always going to be easy to get my child to understand how truly blessed we are. Of course, at this point, a little toddler really shouldn’t be focused on, well, anything, so I guess I still get a pass.

Nevertheless, it was a real treat the other day to buy one simple present for another child that my son had selected – and then remind him that the present was NOT for him.

Okay, you may be thinking that I was a sadistic mother at this point, but hear me out. It’s so easy to tithe and toss donations towards organizations that support what my family and I believe in, but with a click of a button, my child doesn’t see or feel the impact.

He doesn’t understand the concept of money beyond the fact that he likes the paper in his green crocodile bank, and every now and then he gets some of that paper to stuff inside it.

When he selected the toy he thought was the most exciting, naturally, he wanted to keep it. He wanted to play with it like any normal child would. Although he understood from the get-go that the toy wasn’t for him, he didn’t give up hope that I would change my mind and let him have it.

It gave me the perfect opportunity to talk about the act of giving – and how it’s important to give things to others that we would want for ourselves. At home, I demonstrated the open-palm/closed-palm mentality using his toys, and then I left the subject alone.

Over the course of a few hours, he constantly looked at the present, asked about it, and wanted to role-play that he was the child receiving it. (On the one hand, it was amusing to see how he found a way to achieve emotional gratification, and on the other hand, I felt so privileged to witness how he processed his feelings!) I reminded him that giving can actually make you feel really good. To demonstrate, we baked brownies (with LOTS of sprinkles) to give to his preschool class the next day.

The following afternoon, an amazing thing happened. This time, he wanted to pretend that he was the person giving a present, and I’ll tell you, the Grinch has nothing on the size that my heart grew in that moment.

As many of us get ready to open up our presents, I hope that you have a wonderful time appreciating these moments in the ways that make YOU feel most fulfilled and blessed. Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and my most heartfelt wishes for a Happy New Year!

Sending Love & Light,

Atina

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

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– Atina Atwood is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series (described as “sweet California Romance”) and a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, writing. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Happiness is the Key to Success

Love What You Do

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“Success is not the key to happiness, happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.” – Albert Schweitzer

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series and a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, writing. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Make Your Own Opportunities

Build Your Door

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“If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.” – Milton Berle

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series and a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, writing. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Thank You to All of Our Veterans

We See You

Today is Veterans Day here in the United States, and I’m happy to be one of many extending my thanks to those who have served. I want to use this opportunity to share a link to Charity Navigator.org that’s devoted to helping our veterans and their families: Highly-Rated Military and Veterans Organizations. This is simply a reminder that we can help in many ways, both nationally and locally.  A thank you to our veterans is great, but getting them food, a place to stay, and consistent medical attention is even better.

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“How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes!” – Maya Angelou

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series and a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, writing. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Victory Begins in Your Head

It’s All in Your Mind

Victory always starts in the head.

“Victory always starts in your head.” – Douchan Gersi

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series and a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, writing. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

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Is Your Dream Crazy Enough?

How Crazy is Your Dream?

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“Don’t ask if your dream is crazy, ask if it’s crazy enough.”
– Lena Waithe

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series and a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, writing. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

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Hold on to Your Dreams

Thank YOU!

First of all, I want to thank all of you who have supported me and my works, especially during the month of August, when I released my third book, Luck of the Irish! Thank you so much for downloading this third Holiday Heartbeats story (the longest and so far, my personal favorite). I’m so excited that this book is getting into hands around the world. What a dream come true!

Keep On Dreaming On

As an adult, when you believe a dream of yours, it can be difficult to hold on to that belief  – especially when many of those you love and respect quietly give you the side-eye for pursuing what seems to be a far-fetched dream. I’m thankful to have always had a family that supports my very, *ahem* unique perspectives and pursuits in life, and I’m blessed to have a husband who’s my biggest fan and motivator. Still, it’s hard to pull both inspiration and creativity out of the ether and consistently be productive on the daily. Doubt is constantly on the sidelines, poking its nose in places where it shouldn’t be. Combating negativity and creating anything useful aren’t compatible activities, so some days can be pretty exhausting. But I keep on crawling towards that dream, ever hopeful that soon I will walk and eventually run as I grow stronger.

Last month, more readers showed genuine interest in my work than ever before, and it miraculously affected my bottom line. I’m sharing this because I know that many of you reading this blog understand the struggle between living your authentic life as a Creative and also being able to put food on the table for your family and yourself.

So often, I battle with the guilt of no longer working a so-called traditional job by “choice”. Believe me, I’ve definitely been led to do this; even I can’t yet explain why. It’s exhausting running my own business feeling as though I’m wearing blinders, but by Grace and by Faith, I am slowly learning to feel my way around. Mentors are popping up into my life in ways that I may not have expected, but humbly welcome. Last month, I was awarded a grant to attend the Northern Hearts Conference in Toronto, Canada with the Toronto Romance Writers chapter of the Romance Writers of America! Good things are coming, and as I continue to learn and grow, just as I promised when I first came to the decision to work for myself, I intend to continue to share my ups and downs with you as candidly as I can.

There is so much that I want to accomplish, and the desire is still so strong, it’s often overwhelming. As a woman of Faith, I am convinced that I’m following my calling, but it’s hard to hear it over the discouraging silence that often comes back when reaching out. That’s when I’m grateful to those encouraging souls who remind me that just because I’m not hearing an echo doesn’t mean that my message isn’t resonating with someone. So, I’ll continue to reach out, thankful to all of you as I continue to explore Love and Life, one word at a time.

Sending Love and Light to all of you.
Luck of the Irish, Holiday Heartbeats#3, is now available. The first chapter is available for free on Wattpad. Read it here.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

 

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– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, writing. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

Motivated Monday

It’s up to you to set the tone.

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Sending Love and Light to all of you.
Luck of the Irish, Holiday Heartbeats#3, is now available.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, writing. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

#MotivatedMonday: Persevere​

Luck of the Irish (Holiday Heartbeats #3) is LIVE. Download your copy today.

Perseverance is failing 19 times and succeeding the 20th. -Julie Andrews

“Perseverance is failing 19 times and succeeding the 20th.” 
– Julie Andrews

Sending Love and Light to all of you. August is Support Indie Authors month.
Luck of the Irish, Holiday Heartbeats#3, is now available.

©Atina Atwood 2019 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. She is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.