04 January 2008

see what the new year does to me?

something about the new year always makes me think about them.
though i've never really done anything about them.

this year, however, was different.
john and i sat down together on new years day and discussed our goals for the following year.
some were ambitious. (john's work goals will definitely keep him busy)
some were necessary. (start saving money for elijah's education)
some were silly. (travel to spain! france! brazil! all in one year! ha...right. but it is oh-so fun to dream.)
but all were appropriate for our lives and where we're at right now.
we wrote them all down and set a date to look at them again.

goal-setting is a good exercise for me, i think.
it's not something i really did in the past.
sure...i thought about it.
everyone does.
but i never actually wrote them out.
probably because i was afraid i'd fail.
which we all inevitably do...
but that's not the point.
the point is the process...
the trying...
the betterment of self.

in order to help keep myself on track this year with my goals...
i decided to be a bit vulnerable and post them here.
coming up with this list of goals was on one hand, relatively easy for me...
but on the other hand...it was ridiculously hard.
there were so many things that just came spewing out of my head once i started thinking about it that to be honest, i was completely overwhelmed.
i decided that in order to do this right: i had to be specific. realistic. and a bit optimistic.
i also had to leave out some things just because they're things i should be doing anyways.
like drinking plenty of water.
like not driving while talking on my cell phone.
like going to bed early enough to be rested when elijah wakes me up in the morning (or even to wake up before him! there a thought...).
like praying without ceasing.

you know.
the usual.

so. here's my non-usual, slightly optimistic, hopefully realistic list of goals for 2008.
  • exercise daily. by this, i don't mean, go to the gym and sweat my brains out on the treadmill. this just means take a walk with elijah every day. go to yoga once a week. maybe a ballet class here or there. just do something. everyday.
  • eat healthily. now...some of you who know me better than others would say that i already eat very healthily. i buy mostly organic foods, i always choose whole wheat over white, etc. etc. etc. but eating healthfully is an ongoing process i think and really comes down to daily choices. yes, i do buy organic food. but am i really utilizing the bounty that i have available to me? i was perusing the produce aisle yesterday at the grocery store and realized that there is a whole section of produce that i can't even identify. so, that's something i can work on...adding more fruits and vegetables to our family repertoire. trying out new recipes instead of always relying on the same six standbys. eat less processed foods (like chex mix...oh, it is my undoing!) things like that. do-able things.
  • finish one scrapbook layout per week or four layouts a month. this is a minimum. hopefully, i will be complete many more than this...but remember, i'm trying to be realistic here. and this...i think...is realistic for me. i am happy to say though that i've already reached my goal for this week...and almost for the month as i've completely three layouts this week alone. i'm working on a 12 month wall calendar for my scrap-room and i'm already starting on april. very cool. when this storm stops and i have more light by which to photograph, i will share january's page with you.
  • submit scrap layouts to magazines. this goes along with the one above. i've had many people tell me that i should submit my layouts to different scrapbooking magazines (creating keepsakes and simple scrapbooks are the two that i like the best) and i've just never really done it. it's not hard. they have a section on their website where you can upload your jpeg image and boom...you're done. they also have several contests that i plan to enter this year as well...although one of the deadlines is in february and i have yet to even start thinking about it. maybe i should put the calendar on hold for a few weeks and get started on that. especially since i'm going to be gone for eleven days this month...
  • organize photos. ugh. this just hangs over my head. ever since i switched from a pc to a mac back in may, i haven't really found a good system for organizing my photos. and it's driving me crazy. i really noticed the necessity of this when i was doing my "look back in pictures" post a few days ago. i had the hardest time finding the pictures i was looking for. also, i discovered that i have about five copies of each picture hidden in various places on my hard drive. not good. so yeah...this definitely needs to happen. and soon.
  • open etsy.com store. etsy.com is a very cool place where people like me can display and sell their wares. the cost is minimal and the rewards are many (hopefully). the only problem with this goal is that i don't really have any "wares" as of yet. so. i'm shooting for an opening date of 1 march. that...i hope...is realistic. check it out sometime. there's really a ton of fun, funky, handmade-with-love kind of stuff on there. and it's mostly reasonably priced too. when i do open my shop (and i will!), i'll post the link here for your viewing (and purchasing!) pleasure.
  • follow a budget. this is a hard one for me. i like to spend money. it's true. but, i set out a reasonable budget that i really think i can follow. i just have to do it...and not be careless with my spending, like i have in the past.
  • reduce our consumption of "stuff". this is a biggie...that john and i both are praying a lot about these days. we looked at each other one day and said "where did we get all this STUFF?" seriously. it's ridiculous. and it needs to stop. both john and i wish we could just sell this huge house and buy a little dinky one somewhere...live way below our means for a while. get out of debt. *sigh* it's the american dream right?
and a few more goals/resolutions that don't need any (much?) commentary:
  • have a weekly date night with my hubby (even if we don't leave the house. popcorn and a movie anyone?)
  • pray together as a family
  • have a play day once a week (even just walking to the park for a couple hours...something done together!)
  • read together nightly as a family (right now this involves reading "i am a truck" while elijah plays with the pages...*sigh* someday it will be the chronicles of narnia...i hope!)
  • recycle more
ambitious? yes. realistic? i hope so.
here's to a productive 2008.

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