(Kiev, Ukraine - June 2010)
Here are my goals for the new year (in no particular order)...
1. Spend more one-on-one time with each individual child. This doesn't include our school time during which I spend a lot of time with each kid individually. This is fun time. Play time. Whatever-they-want-to-do time.
2. Practice more grace-based parenting. Especially in the area of how I speak to my kids. I need to replace harsh words with encouraging words. I'm not talking about deserting discipline. No way. I'm talking about weighing the words that I speak before I let them roll off my tongue. I've definitely spoken too many unnecessary ugly words during my years as a parent.
3. Spend more time outdoors. Not a problem during the warmer months, but definitely a challenge for this warm-weather-loving gal during the cold, snowy months here in PA. But, truth be told, I have noticed how invigorated I feel after spending time outside in the cold air. I feel more connected to God when I'm out in His creation. Time outdoors is good for my mind and my soul.
4. Spend less time on the computer. I have identified the need to set for myself a "plugged-in" schedule. I think it will look something like checking my email, facebook, and a few blogs first thing in the morning (but only after my quiet time with God) and then giving myself an hour in the afternoon after the schoolwork is done to update my own blog. No checking email or facebook updates throughout the day.
5. Be more intentional about creating. But I have realized that I need to go about this differently than I always have in the past. I've always tended to think of taking time to create as selfish, me-time. And I've always thought of it as something to do ONLY after all the "grown-up" tasks are done. Which means that I rarely got to pursue creative activities. But Who gave me my creative side? None other than the Mighty Creator Himself. And creating/crafting/writing makes me feel invigorated and more alive.
6. Along those same lines ~ create alongside my children. Show them the importance of creativity in their lives. Show them the importance of expressing the talents and gifts that God has blessed them with and encouraging them to use them for His glory.
7. Save more. Spend less. The second half of 2011, I found myself making purchases with less thought and intention. And I spent more money than I should have spent. This year, I want to weigh each purchase carefully before finalizing it. I want to get back to my frugal roots. I'm thinking maybe each Thursday here at Making A Home may turn into a "Thrifty Thursday" during which I share what I'm doing or what I'm learning.
8. Tame the paperwork lion. What can I say? Paperwork is my organizational downfall. As organized as I am in the other aspects of my life, paperwork pretty much gets the best of me. I NEED to fine a system and use it.
9. Recycle. This is something I've been wanting to do, but I've been putting it off. But we are called to be stewards of God's earth, and I definitely don't think that contributing to the already overfilled landfills is being a good steward. Plus, this will be a really good lesson for the kids too.
10. Be more of an encourager to others. I really do enjoy encouraging others, but sometimes I let my busy life get in the way of taking the time to do so. This is going to be the year for actively seeking opportunities to encourage.
And then, of course, there's the exercise more and eat healthier goals, but I'm not giving them their own number because those are every year goals and are kind of cliche, you know???
Shall we toast to a year of more intentional living?
I'd love to hear your goals...