Thursday, January 1, 2015

Goals for 2015


Another year upon us! Hard to believe, isn't it??? If you've spent much time around here, you know that I am a sucker for planning goals, making charts and checklists.... and then forgetting to follow through three months later.

This year, however, I'm taking a new approach. The system I've planned should help me to a) actually remember my goals, b) follow through on them, c) keep accountable, and d) stay motivated. If it works, you will hear more about it.

I think that I mostly struggle with knowing how to format and structure goals. I've tried other people's charts and systems, but they don't quite seem to fit me. I know the areas of my life that I want to change, develop, and improve in. They honestly haven't changed much in the last 3 years or so... but I need a better plan.

Here are my goals for 2015. I'm thinking I'd like to post semi-frequently {monthly? quarterly?} with updates on how I'm doing. Several bloggers I read do this, and I can see how it would help in keeping me accountable! We shall see.

Personal Goals.

  • Read 65 Books. I read 51 books in 2014, with seasons of reading constantly and dry periods in which I didn't read anything for weeks. I figure that if I try to read more steadily and less sporadically, replacing my smart phone with a book in the little down moments, I could make a lot more traction.
  • Intentionally Connect with Extended Family. Niall and I have family around the globe, quite literally. From the west coast of the United States, to the midwest, to Ireland and Australia, our siblings and parents are all over. I am a horrible long-distance communicator. I also happen to hate talking on the phone. In an effort to connect more with these loved ones {who are worth it!!!} I intend to mark birthdays and send cards {or at least emails}, and to email or text pictures of the kids once a week. Because something is much better than nothing.
  • Organize and Display photos. Who does this anymore? In the digital age it can be really tricky to safely store and back up files, order prints, and put together albums. To achieve this one I plan to continue using Groovebook {a service that prints 100 smart phone photos in a compact flip book every month}, and make 4 Shutterfly photo books this year {with all of the coupons they email, you can get gorgeous archival quality scrapbooks for less than $20}. 
  • Nest. Reading The Nesting Place last year very much inspired me to focus in on my home. Not only do I want to declutter and organize our space, I want to make it homey and unique to our family. I've been waiting too long for the "perfect" place, or for things in our rental to be nicer before I really decorate. Just going for it, one little step at a time, will help me to enjoy the place I am living in right now, as is. I have lots of little, more specific goals and projects in mind that fall under this category. I doubt it's something that I'll ever feel I've arrived in, but it is something that I want to focus on this year.

Parenting Goals.

  • 40 Weeks of Literature Based Learning with S. In an earnest attempt to begin preschool at home, I plan on focusing on one book a week, and doing corresponding activities {math, science, art, etc.}. Nothing huge, just an hour or so while W is taking his morning nap. I know she is young enough that it doesn't have to be official, but I'd like to do fun learning activities together {and I know she'll like it too!}. I've been talking about this for too long. Now it's time to go for it in earnest! 40 weeks gives me 16 of leniency. We'll begin with the books I covered in 31 Days of Great Books for Preschoolers, interspersed with more seasonal material, and go from there. 
  • Read Through All of the Caldecott Books with S.
  • Read 12 Chapter Books to S.
  • Scripture Saturate our Home. If I really believe that God's Word contains all that we need for life and godliness, I need to get serious about teaching it to my children {Deuteronomy 6:6-8}. This will include greater consistency and content in our nightly family Bible times, more hymn singing and listening throughout the days, and continued memorization of Scripture and catechism, among other things. 

Marriage Goals.

  • Go On One Date Per Month. Because one is better than zero. We've talked about this for so long, but only now do I feel like it might be possible. The kids are getting older, and the Lord has blessed us with a few single ladies who I can trust and are willing to babysit. Hoorah!!
  • Finish 3 Books Together. Because that's the number of books we've started reading together in the last 4 years but haven't finished. This year. I really love reading together, but our default tends to be t.v. Time to change up some old habits. 

There are also a number of good habits I'd like to develop and bad ones I'd like to break, but for the sake of making smart, realistic, time-sensitive and tangible objectives, this is where I'll leave off.

Do you make New Year's Resolutions? What are your goals for the year? The more accountability and encouragement, the better!

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