It’s the first week of 2019. Beginnings are my favorite. I love fresh starts, Sundays, and a good plan to get started on just about anything. The first week of a new year generally gives me a ton of delight. But this new year feels a bit different, a bit heavier, less like a clean slate and more like a muddy weighted step in the thick sludge that is Transition.

My family, myself, my business – we are all squarely in the midst of big transitions and life feels messy. And beautiful. And full of possibility, too. But also hard.

Yet, I want to create the marker, somehow, here in this blog space (as I have done since 2005!), that a new year has begun and I want to recap the gifts, the struggles, the leaps, and the fullness of 2018.

This will be my 13th year doing these yearly recaps. Holy smokes!

The early recaps (2006-2009) show my life unfolding from hospital social worker to newbie artists and all the ups and downs of fully being in the FLOW for perhaps the first time in my life. There’s a lot of drama in those years, divine happenings, knowings, fearlessness and confidence.

The middle years (2010 – 2012) reveal my journey into new motherhood, navigating a growing business, challenges with confidence, remodeling a home, and settling into (and often struggling with) my creativity.

The later years (2012 – 2015) reveal a woman in her late 30’s coming into herself, depending on her spiritual practice, and learning some hard truths about what it means to live through hard stuff while keeping her heart open.

The current-ish years (2016-2018) show a woman entering her 40s, more and more dedicated to her self-care, her spiritual practice, and her knowings. They reveal many recalibrations and shifts as life unfolds with a fierce commitment to alignment and harmony and light and joy. Good stuff. Life in progress stuff.

I am proud of all of these years. And I’m so glad I’ve captured some of their pivotal moments in these recaps.

For those of you interested, you can take a look at the recaps below:

2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
2012
2011
2010
2009
2008
2007
2006

Today’s recap is for 2018.

Here’s a recap of your highlights and lowlights, 2018:

My word for 2018 was Rise. It was a really good word and carried many meanings, especially at first. Yet, as the year began to unfold, it took on one super clear meaning. All the burning it down and renewal of 2017 led to countless new plantings and seeds that just about covered the entire landscape of my life – new creativity seeds, where we wanted to live seeds, how I wanted to run (or not run) my business, how we wanted to live (simply), and so on. 2018 was the year that the new seeds began to come up out of the soil and Rise. It required so much patience, determination, and brave choices toward the light of alignment. A really good year.kelly rae roberts bird divider

I worked out a ton – especially the first half of the year,  relishing in the  confidence it instills, the discipline it teaches, the strength it builds. In the end, working out gifted me vibrancy. I do it for the progress, not perfection.

I continued to unlearn as much as I could. And dismantle some stuff too. I wrote about finding, and then losing, and then finding confidence.

I snuggled endlessly with Amelia Apple Bottoms and Lulu Butterbutter Bean.

I wrote about the hard soul work that is Putting Yourself Out There and how belief work is REAL, especially when we’re looking at ourselves in the mirror. I asked you a question and was gobsmacked by the responses (in a good way). Thank you.

I kept my Wear Your Joy™ practice going strong, and taught others to do the same. I decided I was worth choosing and encouraged others to choose themselves, too.

I gathered with friends, many times throughout the year, for radiate sessions, tea, girlie weekends, and heart centered conversation.

My heart burst daily being a mama to True over and over again.  I thought a lot  about motherhood about boys (and hoped my mothering provided safe spaces) and I worked non-stop on my self-compassion practice.

I had an up and down relationship with Instagram. Sometimes I loved it. Sometimes I did not.

Oh yes, and I built a tiny studio in my backyard!

I made dozens of new paintings, including this new favorite. I danced in the studio, and delighted when my art was turned into needlepoint. I also did a few happy dances when I signed a contract for a large stationery line.

I went on a few hikes (before injuring my knee), drank a ton of green juice, and learned how to up my veggie cooking game.

I shared my first painting ever (don’t laugh!), and set a road map in place for my future, including the process of rebranding KRR.

I got my pictures taken by an extraordinary duo.

I launched many new gift products (including this sweet stuffie for my kids line) with my long standing partner, DEMDACO and launched a self-kindess course that has been received so well (thank you!).

Celebrated my mom’s 70th and my dad’s 72nd. Counted my blessings when they let me, John, True, and our two dogs move in with them while we built a home.

I traveled and taught painting to some of the most amazing women I’ve ever met. I also traveled to Mexico for a family vacation that went all wrong (we all got very sick).

Co-taught Hello Soul Hello Business: The Retreat in California. One of my favorite teaching events, ever. I also had an article published about the importance of self-care and entrepreneurship.

I lovingly asked people to unfollow me and organized a little protest. And shared the truth about my anxiety story.

I shared a childhood memory of being seven and another one when I was six and decided I could walk myself home from school, thank you very much.

I found all sorts of love, just about everywhere. Including in John. And passion. And beauty. And astrological readings.

I launched an offering all about monthly self-care. This is going down as one of my favorite offerings, ever ever ever because even our messes are worthy of care.

I worked outside as much as I possibly could. I also began to recalibrate, and seek more of what I’m after: Freedom. Clarity came rushing in about the next season of life.

And then the big big announcement (and decision) was made: we are moving. 

Began to switch things up, creatively.

I wrote about my experience of downsizing, selling our stuff, selling our house, and all the things that come with big transitions and moves and what that has meant for business, too. Deep Breaths. And holding the vision.

I grieved the loss of my nephew. I can still hardly believe he is gone.

Began daily group video check-ins with two of my besties, which added immeasurable joy and value to my everyday life.

Made a really big decision and retired both of my painting courses, as well as several other offerings as a way to make room for new offerings. Practiced exquisite self-care during the transition and also struggled, big time.

And finally, we broke ground on our new home, in our soon to be new city.

Kelly Rae pic and signature

Hi, I’m Kelly Rae Roberts! Before I picked up my first paintbrush at the age of 30, I was a medical social worker. I followed my whispers and started playing with paint, and everything changed.

I’m now a full-time artist, author, and Possibilitarian who helps women explore their creativity, nourish their souls, and build thriving creative businesses.

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