As we prepare for a new year, most of us have decided on one or two resolutions.

Some are planning to live healthier lives; others resolve to have a better self-care routine; and still others are seeking to prioritize their time better.

Of course, you can never go wrong living a healthier lifestyle, and to be honest, most of the resolutions that we set are beneficial in some way or another. However, for myself, there is a quiet but resolute commitment that I am making.

This year, more than ever, I am determined to enjoy every moment that I have with my family.

After caring for a family member with dementia, our family is facing the reality of how fast things change and how important it is to make memories together while there’s still time.

There are so many things that demand our attention and keep us pulled away from the sanctuary of home and family, including work demands, social obligations, or the long to-do list that never seems to get done. Time truly is a thief!

This year for myself and my family, I am planning to carve out intentional time for meaningful shared experiences. In a world where screens seem to dominate our attention, I am choosing to be fully present, listening to and sharing the stories that shape our family.

In the hectic lifestyles that we lead, the simplicity of just stopping to savor the moment in time with the ones you love is priceless.

There is an undeniable joy that comes from even the smallest things. Perhaps it’s the laughter shared around the dinner table, a weekend camping trip, or just being present in each other’s lives.

This resolution or commitment will go beyond just our home, for in nurturing our family bonds and making meaningful connections, we lay the groundwork for strong families, which in turn lays the foundation for a strong community.

As you prepare for the new year, writing down your resolutions, I pray that you will join me in making a promise to the people who matter most. I pray that there will be many memories made and many laughs shared. I pray that every moment is filled with love and the joy of just being together.

Time won’t slow down, but we can.

Ashley Carter is a wife, mother, and grandmother living in Elmore County, where she and her husband run Farm to Table Living and Carter Farms. Ashley serves as Controller and Executive Assistant at 1819 News. She is currently working on an inspirational book of short stories. To connect with the author of this story or to comment, email

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