One Little Word 2009 & Giveaways


I am so excited to embark on a new word for 2009.

My word is nurture.


For me, especially with a new baby on the way within the next month or so, I have been thinking a lot about nurturing. It's such a soft, slow, gentle word.

There are many things in my life I would like to focus on nurturing this coming year. Our new baby girl. Simon and the transition to big brotherhood. My relationship with Chris. Photography. Patience. My business & this blog.

I am also going to be conscious of nurturing myself during this time of major transition in our lives.

There is something very special about this word for me. It represents slowing down, simplifying, and pinpointing what is really important to me in my life (not just the next 365 days). I am nervous and excited and so looking forward to what is to come.


The idea behind the one little word concept is to give yourself something to focus on throughout the year. As I stated in my newsletter back in January 2007, "A single word can be a powerful thing. It can be the ripple in the pond that changes everything. It can sharp and biting or rich and soft and slow."

Also from that same newsletter:

Can you identify a single word that sums up what you want
for yourself in 2009?

It can be something tangible or intangible. It could be a
thought or a feeling or an emotion. It can be singular or
plural. The key is to find something that has personal
meaning for you. This is not your mother's word or your
spouse's word or your child's word - this is YOUR

One little word can have big meaning in your life if you allow
yourself to be open to the possibilities. And here's one thing
that is totally interesting: sometimes a word will pop into
your brain and it will not make any sense to you right now.
Give it some time. Let it percolate a bit. I have often
found that our hearts speak to us in very unique ways.
Maybe this is a word you need to hear but just aren't ready
for it yet. Again, be open to the possibilities.

I can't wait to see all the words for 2009.


To celebrate the new year I have three very special giveaways - all directly related to this project. Two beautiful pieces of jewelry and one piece of art to celebrate your word.


Lisa Leonard Designs
Giveaway: One custom Word of the Year Necklace
Special for AE readers: 20% off Word of the Year necklaces with the code "myword" at checkout
Meet Lisa | Shop Lisa


Liz Lamoreux Soul Mantra Pendants
Giveaway : One custom Soul Mantra Pendant any size or design
Special for AE readers : 20% off Soul Mantra necklaces throughout January. Enter code "one word 2009" in the notes to seller and the discount will be refunded to you through Paypal.
Meet Liz | Shop Liz


Stephanie from Homegrown Hospitality
Giveaway: One 4x6 black or white frame with hand drawn doodle in color pallet of your choice. The doodle can include "The Word" or "A Name" and a favorite quote, verse or scripture.
Special for AE readers: Stephanie is donating $5 from the sale of each doodle to Autism Speaks.
Meet & Shop Stephanie

To be entered into the drawing today please leave a comment with your word for 2009. It's totally fine if you are still thinking about it - if that's the case just leave a comment with some of your intentions for this new year. Comments will be closed on Thursday, January 1st at noon Pacific with the winners posted shortly after.

A safe and Happy New Year to each and every one of you.

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1940 thoughts

  1. Shawn Stewart-Maddox says…

    Hope to find balance for the new year!

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  2. alece says…

    my word for 2009 is shalom.
    i've grown up hearing it means "peace". but it doesn't. literally, it translates to: "nothing missing, nothing broken". the POWER of that phrase has wrecked my life. in a good way.
    God desires me to be whole, complete, fully satisfied. and while i don't see it or feel it or even at times believe it, i am seeking my shalom in Him.
    i even just got it tattooed on my wrist two weeks ago so it would serve as a permanent visible reminder to me...

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  3. ruben says…

    Nice way to make a new year's resolution concrete.

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  4. Lisa says…

    My word for 2009 is FRESH. I'm not sure it fits in with all of the other inspiring words but, for me, it is. I just love that feeling of being organized and having things clean. It gives me a sense of well-being. I can't say it's always that way, but I try and plan to do so even more in 2009. So the word FRESH came to my mind last night as I was thinking of what I like:
    FRESH sheets
    FRESH fruit & vegetables
    FRESH air
    FRESH magazines (always gotta get the one at the back LOL)
    FRESH flowers
    FRESH ideas
    FRESH scrapbook supplies
    and for 2009...
    FRESH start

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  5. Cheryl says…


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  6. Ana F. says…

    Hey, Ali! Happy New Year!
    My word for 2009 is LIVE. I am going to have a lot going on this year, moving is going to be the first one. I want to really be there, everyday. I don't want to rush things like I always do and wait for tomorrow.

    Reply 0 Replies
  7. Nora McMillan says…

    Hi Ali, I love reading your blog every day. Love all your great ideas and creativity. You are very inspiring to me!
    I did the one little word in 2007: BALANCE
    Last year, 2008 it was: BE
    This year it is: FITNESS
    Having a word did help me focus on what was meaningful to me throughout the year. Of course it got lost in all the daily shuffle from time to time but then I would bring it back to the forefront. I made little booklet journals with the word on the front and made little notes to myself in the journals. I'm going to do one for my 2009 word today.
    FITNESS in both physical state, emotional health, and choosing what is right for me every day.
    Thanks again Ali! Looking forward to hearing about your new baby. (I'm a Women's Health Care Nurse Practitioner and work with moms and babies every day. I hope your birth goes smoothly and quickly. A baby girl, lucky you!)
    Anacortes, WA

    Reply 0 Replies
  8. Karlynn says…

    Happy New Year!!!
    My word for 2009 is ENJOY ...i really need to focus on my family and life and not just work and stress. I really want to ENJOY this year; the good, bad and the ugly of everything, I just want to ENJOY :)

    Reply 0 Replies
  9. Cheryl says…


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  10. Michele says…

    My word for 2009 is Joy.
    I want to refocus on the most important relationships and activities that truly bring myself and others through me, Joy.

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  11. leslie says…

    hi Ali.
    i didn't know you knew you were having a little girl. yay, congrats!
    my word for this coming year is NOW
    with our pending adoption it has been way to easy to keep focusing on the future and then 'when it happens' instead of enjoy the NOW where i am so blessed already.
    I'm focusing on the now this year with hope for the future. But now has to be what matters most... its all we are really guaranteed.

    Reply 0 Replies
  12. pen* says…

    happy, magical new year! wishing you so much joy with all the excitment of your new arrival!
    my word for 2009 is {be}
    thank you for inspiring this wonderful tradition.

    Reply 0 Replies
  13. Colette says…

    EMBRACE! When I mentioned this to family/friends, they laughed- said it sounded like I wanted to spend the year hugging others (not such a bad idea) but I was thrilled to see your first commenter also choose embrace!
    I take it to mean embracing who I am while embracing the idea of improving to become a better me.
    thanks for this inspirational activity-
    last year's word was faith and I loved having a "word of the year"

    Reply 0 Replies
  14. Teresa says…

    Hi Ali -- Thank you so much for this. Last year my word was stronger...little did I know how much I would need it throughout the year. Having it made a huge difference. This year I'm going in a different word is joy. I want to put things in the past, relax, think positively and live in the moment as much as possible.
    Best wishes to you and your family in 2009.

    Reply 0 Replies
  15. Candi Summers says…

    My word for 2009 is going to be Joy. I have had a lot of Joy stolen in 2008 and I need to just move into a more joyful, less stressful place.

    Reply 0 Replies
  16. Jane Thorpe says…

    Hi, My word is 'courage'. I have changes I NEED to make this year and I know I am going to have to find the courage and strength to make those changes this year. Thank you. Happy New Year!

    Reply 0 Replies
  17. Pat says…

    My word for 2009 is CHOICE. It is my choice to do housework or be lazy; to nurture myself or ignore myself; to spend time with family & friends or withdraw. My choice is to be the best I can be and to encourage others to be their best.

    Reply 0 Replies
  18. Kathryn says…

    My word for 2009 is the same as 2008 - it's something I'm still working on - "deliberate." Making better choices by thinking things through and being "deliberate."

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  19. Donna says…

    Happy First Day of 2009!
    For the longest time I've been in and out of my dungeon of resentment not knowing the reasons why. It's not a place I enjoy being in so I consciously made myself become aware of what causes my resentments. I realized that almost always I decide it's another person's fault/doing. To be rid of resentments, I need to become accountable for things in my life.

    Reply 0 Replies
  20. Sharon says…

    Happy New Year.
    This is my first year choosing a word. I think it will be REALIZE for 2009.
    -be fully aware or cognizant of
    -understand: perceive
    -make real or concrete
    -give reality or substance to
    Realize how lucky and blessed I am.
    Realize that life is beautiful even when things aren't going smoothly.
    Realize my potentials, my dreams.

    Reply 0 Replies
  21. Shalae says…

    VALUE. I want to make sure I give the things I value the most in my life the time they deserve.I also want to eliminate those things from my life that have no value. What are my values? All questions I'm ready to explore during 2009.

    Reply 0 Replies
  22. Heather says…

    Happy New Year everyone! My word for 2009 is moments. I've been learning a lot lately about being in present and how life is made up of one moment after another. That happiness is not something that can be achieved but something experienced only in the current moment.

    Reply 0 Replies
  23. Sue says…

    My word for 2009 is SERENE.
    –adjective 1. calm, peaceful, or tranquil; unruffled: a serene landscape; serene old age.
    Synonyms: peaceful, placid, tranquil, calm, halcyon, quiet, untroubled, august, bright, clear, collected, composed

    Reply 0 Replies
  24. Elizabeth says…

    my word is LIVE. Live in the moment. Live for now. Life is too short to worry about things that have happened or will happen down the road. I've spent much of 2008 worrying about way too much. I am determined to do better at living in the present in 2009, and enjoying every minute.

    Reply 0 Replies
  25. Sarah says…

    I am considering either peace or health for my word this year.

    Reply 0 Replies

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