Every winter (usually between Christmas and New Year) Aaron and I have "the talk" about what our goals are for the up coming year, next 5 and 10 years, and how we feel we did reaching the goals we had set for that current year. Sound familiar? If you remember, in January I did a post entitled New Ways for a New Year. It wasn't really a list of New Year Resolutions; rather, it was a composite of some changes I/we wanted to implement in our lives.
Well, it's now mid-April, and the year's almost 1/3 finished (amazing, isn't it!?!). I thought it was time for me to re-evaluate how I'm / we're doing. This way, I can feel good about any accomplishments, and know what areas still need some focus.
Goal #1 - We'd like to have the entire house painted by next January. Well, this goal is extremely slow moving. There are 15 rooms (plus hallways, stairs, and closets) to paint, and so far ONE has been painted. It's tricky painting with a 2 year old in the house, so we ended up taking a whole week to get it done - because we started after he went to bed at night. In order to finish this goal, we'll need to paint two rooms a month. I'm not seeing that happen. But, Aaron and I spoke earlier this week about painting, and hopefully we'll get started again in May. I think I have finally selected the colors for the three remaining bedrooms. That seems like a good start.
Goal #2 - I'd like to plant a vegetable garden. This one has finally begun. I posted earlier this week that we've broken ground, and that was soooo exciting for me! We were hoping to finish the garden prep by tonight, but have run into a snag. Last night I had to change my med site (the other site was developing 3 blisters), and so now I've begun another 12 days of pain. So, Aaron's shifted his focus on childcare, and helping around the house. We'll hope to get back to the garden by the end of next week. (It's sunny today, but supposed to rain the next 5 days.)
Goal #3 - I'd like to make one new recipe a week. Ummmm. I totally failed. I think I've made 4 or 5 new recipes so far this year. I guess that equates to one new recipe a MONTH. Hmmmmm. Gonna have to try harder. I DID however, finally organize my recipes (I've been wanting to do that since before we got married!). I'll do a post on that another time.
Goal #4 - I want to start reading again. A week or two ago, I was looking over my "New Ways" list, and feeling badly about how poorly I've done, so I added up the books I've read (cover-to-cover) since January 1.... FOURTEEN! That's averaging ONE EACH WEEK! It's been in spurts, but I guess I HAVE succeeded! (I doubt I've read 14 books in the whole six years we've been married - not counting since January, of course!) YAY - ONE "NEW WAY" has been successfully adopted! [Insert pat on back]
Goal #5 - I want to go deep. We've now lived on Dogwood for six months, and I'm slowly starting to make friends. Sometimes our conversations are about "things" and our personal histories, but they're beginning to get deeper. And THAT is exciting to me! I have a tendency to sound egotistical about some of my thoughts, and that's something I'm trying to change. But the more experience I get talking about my thoughts, the more practice I get, right? *grin* I've also done a better job of sharing some "thoughts" on facebook, and not only comments like "date night!". I think it really helps that I've started reading again - it's helping me start to think again. But maybe part of that is also because I tend to only read non-fiction.
Goal #6 - I want to spend money more wisely. Last year we instituted a severe spending freeze. That's the only way we could have afforded to relocate, and put down the deposit on this house. We're not in a strict spending freeze right now, because there's things we really feel we NEED to buy (like the lawn mower, etc.). But I'm doing a MUCH better job couponing, and not buying something at the store till it's on sale (and if it's sold out before then, I tell my self it wasn't meant to be). We keep praying about each purchase we make (or end up not making), so hopefully we're doing okay in this area. Though, (like most people) we wish we had more in our savings account than we currently do.
Goal #7 - I want to grow spiritually because I WANT TO, not because life forces me to. The last two years have been VERY difficult for me physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I grew by leaps and bounds because life forced me to (the alternative would have been to give up and die). Last year, alone I was hospitalized 4 times (each time in an ICU or Cardiac Monitoring Floor), that's an average of once every 3 months. And they weren't just overnight visits. My body has failed me time and time again, and though my family and friends do a fabulous job supporting me, they're fallible. I've HAD to reach out to God; there were times I didn't have strength to hold on any longer, and had to just let go and pray He'd catch me. And each time He was faithful, just as He promised! ... It's now been just over 5 months since my last hospitalization!
I haven't grown as much spiritually in these past 4 months as I have the past 2 years, but I'm definitely growing! God's teaching me that it's not necessary for me to depend on "books" and "Bible study teachers" to teach me - if I really spend time with Him (and my Bible), HE really WILL be my teacher! (Though it's awfully encouraging to me when I read something in a book and have already had that thought in my devotional time!)
I guess I'm doing OK on my "New Ways for the New Year" list. If you had asked me last week, I would have thought I was failing miserably. Guess some of the items really are becoming "part of me" rather than just a conscious effort. That excites me! Of course there's lots of room for growth and change. But the year's only 1/3 done! Now that I've re-evaluated where I am and where I want to go, I can get back on track again!
#55 - Get me off this mountain
8 years ago