Tuesday, January 26, 2016

2016 Goals

Even though it is now closer to February 1 than January 1 I wanted to make sure that I spent some time considering my goals for the year.  Though I often fall short of the goals I set for myself, I've found that it has been incredibly helpful for me to really examine where I've been and where I want to be. Many goals are the same as in the past years; some because I didn’t complete them and others because they ought to continually be on the list.

Spiritual Goals:
  • Daily Bible Reading
  • Focused/Planned Bible Study
  • Focused Bible lessons for the kids. I have an idea to do some form of journaling with them, but we'll see how that works out.
  • Start using the Scripture Memory System with the kids (and me!) again. This system has been a great tool to learning Scripture, but I've really fallen short with it recently. 
  • Develop a deeper and more specific prayer life.
  • Make an effort to be aware of others’ needs, as well as how to help those in need. Overcome my fears of reaching out to speak to people (the introvert in me really struggles with this . . .).
  • Make an effort to encourage brothers and sisters in Christ.
  • Always be ready and eager to share the gospel.
  • Maintain and exhibit an attitude of joy that should be evident in my life because I am hidden with Christ (Col. 3:1-4).
House Goals:
  • Clean out the garage . . . completely . . . in anticipation of possibly converting our garage to a master bedroom. We've already gotten a good start on this, but there is still a lot to do, including many more trips to Goodwill!
  • Get the house organized, and purged of excess junk. This past year I read the book The Life Changing Magic Of Tidying Up, and it really opened my eyes. I started working through some of the methods in the book before we left for Paraguay, but didn't finish before we left. And once we returned from Paraguay things just seemed so crazy I never finished. I look forward to completing the process.
  • If/When we complete renovations on the house, clean out and organize thoroughly when we rearrange rooms.
  • Teach (and enforce) good habits to the kids for keeping their areas picked up. The kids have really been doing well with this lately, and Luke has even been helping out a lot more as well.
  • Keep up with Flylady’s daily assignments to help keep the house in a manageable state. 
  • Handle papers (mail, or otherwise) when they come into the home, rather than just piling them up to handle later.
  • Get one “house” project done each month (paint the front door, repair the floor, etc.)
  • This isn’t technically a “house” goal, but it fits here best: Keep our cars clear of junk and trash.
Health Goals:
  • Get back into a healthy eating routine. Prior to getting pregnant last year, I felt like I had finally figured out this healthy living thing (I'd lost weight, and even though I still needed to lose more, was really feeling great!). But between pregnancy and living in a foreign country for three months last year, my eating habits have somewhat fallen away. Time to get back on the wagon!
  • Exercise at least three times a week. Make it a point to walk more (for instance, like to pick up Ella from school).
  • Gain strength and endurance.
Family goals:
  • Eat at home more often, and actually plan meals for the week (it is easier to eat at home when you've planned!).
  • Cook dinner with the kids 1-2 times a month. I really want to involve them more in cooking, but I get stuck in this bad habit of not involving them because it is quicker/easier for me to do things myself (and dinner time always seems to be hectic around our house).
  • Try out a new meal at least once a month.
  • Cook a hot breakfast for the family at least once a week.
  • Stick to our budget, and look for ways to save more.
  • Evaluate/consider schooling for Ella and Troy next year. Ella was homeschooled for kindergarten, but has gone to public school this year for first grade. We've liked things about both situations and opportunities, but this isn't the post for that!
  • Get outside more with the kids.
  • Get down on the floor and play with the kids more.
Parenting goals:
  • Emphasize the concepts of respect and authority with Ella, Troy, and Luke.
  • Encourage Ella, Troy, and Luke to have the heart of a servant.
  • Encourage Ella, Troy, and Luke to be thankful.
  • Teach Ella and Troy to be aware of others around them, emphasizing humble hearts and teaching them that it isn't all about them.
  • Encourage Ella and Troy to follow Matthew 7:12.
  • Foster a good relationship between the kids (teaching them about sharing, patience, kindness, etc.).
  • Give Ella and Troy more responsibilities around the house (chores, etc.)
Photography goals:
  • Take more pictures! Pregnancy (particularly dealing with hyperemesis gravidarum, severe morning sickness, for my entire pregnancy) really does a number in my life, and photography is no exception. I often don't feel like doing much of anything, and picking up my camera was certainly not a priority when I didn't feel well.
  • Learn Adobe Camera Raw (I've always used Adobe Lightroom, but have been recently reading that Adobe Camera Raw might actually be the way to go).
  • Learn more about off-camera flash.
  • Learn more about Adobe Photoshop.
  • Learn more about graphic design.
Other goals:
  • Become fluent in Spanish. I really, really thought that after spending the summer in Paraguay, a Spanish-speaking country, that I'd be much further along in this journey. But I'm not (since our time down there, we've heard many people tell us that it takes most people a year in an immersion environment to become fluent). I did learn quite a bit when I was in Paraguay (and through Rosetta Stone leading up to our trip), but I have a long way to go.
  • Focus on having a optimistic response. I don't consider myself a pessimistic person (I don't have a negative outlook on life), but I do have a tendency for my first reaction to things to be very skeptical.
  • Exhibit patience towards all, but especially with the kids at the end of the day :) .
  • Work on time management, including getting up at a more consistent time in the morning, and going to bed earlier in the evening. This goal probably isn't going to really be feasible until Annie is sleeping at a little more predictable/regular schedule though.
  • Blog more! I've missed writing, and although no one may read it, I really enjoy it.