In my last post, I promised to share my goals for 2013. And I warned y’all, I mean business this year! Even if I don’t accomplish all that I list here, I’m going to give it my darnedest. I’m going to TRY! So without further ado, here goes (in no particular order):
- Plant a garden. Since we got married, Marty and I have lived in a townhouse, a loft, and a condo — none of which had outdoor space for our use. We now live in a tiny rental house but hey, it has a YARD! And we are allowed to use a certain area for gardening, and I’m so STOKED to do this. I’m thinking I want to try my hand at tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, green onions, cucumbers, zucchini, green and red peppers, and…not sure what else. I will take any/all suggestions on this!
- Create a vanity table area in our bedroom. This has honestly been a dream of mine since I was old enough to form thoughts. My grandma had one, my mom had one (and doesn’t now, but I miss hers!), and for heaven’s sake, I WANT ONE. My grandma always had her lotions and jewelry and picture frames and just special items on display. My mom had the same, including her perfume (Anais Anais) on a lace doily, and a blue hairdryer tucked in the right drawer (the things you remember from childhood!). I don’t mind getting ready in the bathroom, but I’ve always wanted this special place to sit and get dolled up, applying makeup and curling my hair while listening to music, being surrounded by fresh flowers and pictures of my beloved and my babies. I’ve pinned several ideas on Pinterest, but I love looking at this image for inspiration:
Now, this is way too girly — even for me — but it has all the right components: soft lighting (but still strong enough for makeup application), feminine colors, a great chair, and so forth. I can’t wait to get this project completed!
- Get a part-time job. One that I really, really feel good about doing. Marty and I have discussed this and I’d like some extra money for doing things, like the project I just mentioned. However, I really believe that my primary job is to be at home, raising my kids and taking care of my house, so whatever job I get has to feel worth the sacrifice of time away, and it must be limited in hours to what I feel comfortable with. I realize that this is not just a tall order, it is a skyscraper. But — I’m on the hunt and thankfully, I’m in no hurry. I have the luxury of being picky so I’m going to be!
- Read at least 2 books a month. I’m in a little book club and we tend to read about one book a month, so the other one shall be up to me (although I have choosing power for the book club, too). I think 24 books in a year is about right for my schedule, though I wish I had time to read far, far more.
- Get on a good cleaning schedule with my house and stick to it. I have already devoted hours upons hours in 2013 toward this goal. My thought was to get my house sparkling and organized from top to bottom, then maintain it on a daily/weekly schedule, as written out in my dayplanner. And can I say that I’m kinda proud of myself for the progress I’ve made? My pantry and a couple of closets are organized; I have to finish in the kids’ room and the master bathroom, but I’m more than halfway there with the overall organizing. I’m almost completely done with the major clean, so starting next week I’m going to begin my “maintaining” effort.
- Write blog posts as often as I can, and stay current reading my friends’ blogs and other blogs that inspire me (and don’t shame me or make me feel inadequate!).
- Go on a date with Marty at least once a month, and twice if we can swing it (and get childcare). Between Christmas and New Year’s, my parents offered to watch our kids for us one night so we could “run away.” Well, we ran straight to the theatre to watch “Les Mis” and oh. my. stars., was it an amazing experience. I bawled like a baby into my popcorn napkin and was a sloppy mess by the time the movie finished, but I could honestly have sat through another screening immediately after. If Hugh Jackman doesn’t win an Oscar for his performance, I might boycott the Academy Awards for the rest of my life and unto eternity, Amen. But I digress. Marty and I had just the best time, and we really love having the chance to focus on each other and hold hands and just be in love. Big priority here, date nights!
- Be dedicated and stay committed to our financial plans. Which are a bit loosey-goosey at the moment, but they do consist of paying off our debts and saving money (duh). We are still working out the specifics, but we have already saved more money than usual for any given month, and we’re about to pay off a debt that’s been bugging us. Yay!
- Learn to sew. This is a biggie. My friend needs a partner for a sewing class, and I’m still debating it. I’d like to learn in a class, but I don’t want to spend the money, especially when my mom has a machine and could teach me, but she’s so busy and kinda short on spare time. So, like I said, still debating. But I see so many great — and supposedly easy — projects on Pinterest: a Christmas tree skirt, dresses and jumpers for Lucy, skirts for me, doll baby clothes, aprons, table linens. Yeah, I really want to do this!
- Host tea parties. That’s right, tea parties! I’m growing a collection of pretty china, and I love getting together with girlfriends, and remember, now I have a yard. I would love to set up a table, brew some tea and coffee, make some fun little desserts and a fruit salad, and have some girls over. Maybe girls who don’t necessarily know each other? I can’t tell you how many times I’ll be watching a period-piece film or show (Downton Abbey, anyone?) and think, I really wish I could live like that. Well, this is an idea I had to insert some old-fashioned elegance and beauty and fellowship in my life. (Let me know if you’d like to come to one; I’ll put you on my list!)
- Host playdates, at least one a month, for my kids. And of course, go to playdates as often as we’re invited. I love playdates. It’s probably my favorite thing about being a mom of kiddos this age.
- Host dinner parties for other couples/families. We’ve been living in our house since October, but we have yet to invite anyone over. Honestly, it’s just taken me awhile to get things situated, but I think we’re there. It’s time.
- Be healthy. Lose a few more pounds (not obsessively) or at least maintain my current weight. Do this by eating good foods and taking the kids on walks in their wagon. When I have time, do more reading/research on eating well (it’s becoming a pet subject of mine; for example, I’m interested in the raw foods aspect of a healthy diet. I notice that I feel better when I’ve had an apple or an orange or a raw carrot during the day’s eating.).
- As part of #13, get back into yoga! My sister Katie and I used to take yoga classes together and we always had so much fun, and it was a great way to build in sisterly time with her into my schedule. If you’re reading this, Katie, you’ve been notified. 🙂
- Establish and discipline myself into keeping a good bedtime and awakening routine. Maybe this is too much of a true confession, but I let my kids wake me up in the mornings, and boy, do I really abuse bedtime. I’m a night owl but it’s sort of spiraling out of control at the moment because I’m staying up until 1 and sometimes even 2 a.m. (what can I say? I like me time!). However, in an effort to not force a zombie mom on my kids in the mornings, I want to actually (gasp) set an alarm and make coffee and get the day going before they wake up. I know this won’t happen every day, but hey, it’s a goal.
- Become more active in our small-but-growing church. We haven’t joined it yet, and we’re not 100% sure that we will, but for right now it’s meeting our needs and we’re enjoying it, and I think there’s no better way of figuring out if a church is a good fit than by pitching in and/or getting more involved. There’s a Bible study I’ve been thinking about attending, and I feel I should help out in the toddlers’ class once a month or so.
- Keep on top of my kids’ photo albums. I compile a photo album for each year of their life (2 for the first year since there are just SO many pictures), and right now I’m almost caught up with Lucy’s and only 2 behind on Will. I love doing them and I love getting them at a deep discount by checking for Shutterfly deals online.
- Give my kids really great birthday parties. This is a goal of mine every year. I hate spending a whole lot of money so I start planning in January (both of them have summer birthdays), so that way I can pick up items here and there instead of having a huge expense all at once. This year I’m planning a rainbow birthday party for Lucy, but I’m undecided on Will’s. Maybe helicopters, or Thomas?
- Complete and begin potty-training, for Will and Lucy, respectively. Will is really coming along but there’s still a bit of a gap between him and the finish line. Lucy is very interested but not exactly cooperative at this point. I’d love for them both to be out of diapers by this time next year!
- Continue to save money, wherever, however, whenever I can. This kinda goes along with #8, but it’s a bit different because it’s all in the amount of effort I can put into it during any given week. Sometimes I feel like clipping coupons and following ads and price-comparing, and sometimes it’s just too much energy to spare. I’d like to do it more, so again, that’s my goal, but I’m allowing myself wiggle room on this one.
- Get more painting/decorating done in my house. This one’s a bit tricky, because anything we paint we are required to re-paint back to the original color upon leaving our house. So, I’m certainly not going to paint every wall. We’re leaving the bathrooms as-is, as well as the hallways and such. My kitchen has a vaulted wall, so I’m not doing that one, either, nor are we doing the half-wall that surrounds the kitchen (it’s part of a great room). But, I am thinking I need some color in my living room, maybe two walls in the master, and definitely the kids’ room. I really think kids’ rooms need color, don’t you? I have some ideas for their room but I’m scouting about on Pinterest to really clarify them. (Have you picked up yet that I’m a certified Pinterest freak???)
- Continue to build a good wardrobe. I’ve really started to shop more wisely, and by that I mean spending money on really good clothes that won’t wear out or whose time will pass all too soon trend-wise. For example, Anthropologie clothes are definitely not cheap, but I’ve noticed that my Anthro clothes really stand up well to wash and wear, plus I always get compliments on my pieces. Also, I think certain trends are not going away anytime soon, so I’m building a collection of scarves, puffy vests, and leggings for winter; and skirts, good tees, and sandals for summer. I would also like to say, my husband is an absolute gem when it comes to this. He loves to take me to Anthro, or Ann Taylor Loft, or Von Maur to look at the pretties, even if we don’t buy. He pays attention and he has given me a surprise sweater or two before. Yeah, he’s a keeper, that one.
- Force myself to do more “kid” time. Please don’t misunderstand this one. I love my kids more than my own life, but “play” doesn’t come easily to me for some reason. I have to fight the urge to jump up and get to the laundry or the dishes, or even just sit and Facebook while my kids watch a cartoon, but my kids love to have me do puzzles with them, or play tea party, or zoom little airplanes about the room. I make it a point to always stop when they request my participation, but I want to be better about initiating or joining them uninvited. They love that kind of attention and they deserve it. The laundry can wait, and I need to remember that.
Well, it’s a weird number to have, but there you have it, all 23 of my goals for 2013. Okay, maybe that does kinda go together? Anyway, I hope to share progress and updates here on each one. Stay tuned!