Did you make resolutions? Mine is to not get pregnant. But seriously........
Each new year rather than making resolutions for some sort of drastic change that I know won't happen, I like to meditate on words that I would like to be a major theme in the new year. This year I want to focus on gracious living, completion, and intentional listening. Overall, I want to absorb all of our blessings [even that which does not seem to be] and be thankful. I want to be gracious with what we have been given as a family as we show hospitality toward others. I also want to more freely extend grace toward others, even when it has not been shown to me. I aspire to complete projects. I have several crafting/sewing ideas, many of which I've already purchased supplies, that I just haven't started. Maybe I should start them and focus on finishing next year? Just kidding. I want to be a more intentional listener. There's a lot to learn from just listening and not talking. I long for quietness so that I can minister better by keeping my mouth shut. Just because I know things or think things doesn't mean I need to advertise it.
This year I set realistic goals for myself that I hope to achieve.
*Read more. Having a little one doesn't allow much "me" time, but I have time to read a few chapters as I nurse. I'd like to do a book a month, but maybe I can do more. So far on my list?
The Money Saving Mom's book that will be released next week. I really enjoy learning about budgeting, etc and cannot wait to get my hands on this.
Girl Hunter. I don't think I could ever actually kill an animal but I do love learning more about where my food comes from and want to take a bigger role in it as a consumer.
One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. I feel this will be a great help on my quest for a more gracious [and grateful] life.
*Get back on the fitness high road. Kathryn is now almost 10 weeks old, and I've only lost half of the 52 lbs gained during pregnancy. Considering that I already had a few extra pounds before I got pregnant, I've got about 30-40lbs that need to go. I believe all things in moderation and as long as I'm exercising I should see great results. I'm cleared now for regular workouts. I plan to ease into it but hope to partake in a step aerobics class at church and maybe even do one of those Couch to 5K programs [although I loathe running].
*Eat more fruits and veggies. The #1 way I hope to do this is by integrating the green smoothie into my life. It's a great way to get 2+ servings of fruit and 2 cups of leafy greens without even trying. Brown Eyed Baker has a great recipe that I'm going to start with. Do you have one that you'd like to share?
*Stick to a Bible reading plan. It's so easy using the YouVersion app on my phone.
*Pray more for my husband. I've seen some calendars/charts floating around online [example]. This will be a great visual reminder for me that I could keep in the kitchen for specific ways to pray [and a great visual for him to know that I'm praying].
*Have Bible study with Justin. We haven't really ever done this well as a married couple but we hope to begin anew. There's a great marriage devotional on my YouVersion app that we plan to begin. It's only 15 days or so, but it's a great place to start.
*Become a prayer warrior for my child. Here is an example of a prayer calendar for moms. It's easy to pray that she takes a nap but I want to do more.
*Treat Justin like he's my husband not my child. Yes, I know men can sometimes turn into a second [and even bigger] baby that your actual baby. BUT I don't want to have the kind of relationship with my husband that is akin to parenting. I do dumb things all the time and he doesn't talk down to me like sometimes I do to him [double ouch]. He's human just like me, and even though Kathryn has sort of changed the dynamic in our family, I want us to continue to be in love and seek after the same things together that we did when we first got married.
*Complete our household notebook. This is a book that will have our family mission statement, daily calendar, meal plans, shopping lists, etc. Call me a nerd if you want but I am excited about having this!
*I want to serve with Justin as much as possible, but I do know that I've had to step back now that Kathryn is here. I will continue to help in any way that I can from home.
*Invite each staff family from our church over to our house between now and June [if their schedules allow]. We have been here for a year and a half and never had anyone over that Justin works with. Shame on us! So, if you're on staff at our church and reading this, watch out--I'll be coming your way with an invite soon!
*Pour into the college students we minister to. I think we do a pretty good job at this, but there are several students who are kind of on the outside, so to speak, that I want to make sure are included. Now that we are settled with KG I hope to get back on track to inviting a couple of them over every Sunday for lunch.
*Justin wants us to get involved with a local ministry. There are a lot of hurting people in this community. I'm not sure what that will look like, but I'll follow his lead.
*Continue to pay down debt [student loans, hospital bills, etc].
*This is the year that we cancel our TV. Seriously, $92 a month to contribute to my laziness? There are less expensive ways to find entertainment, and I'll be excited to share with you just how that comes together.
*Give above and beyond our tithe. I feel that more and more we need to recognize that none of what we have is really ours. We are so, so blessed and we need to take more opportunities to bless others locally and globally [especially now that we won't be paying Direct TV]. I so want to sponsor a child through Compassion and look forward to doing that soon.
What are your goals/hopes for 2012? I plan to get started on mine right away...just as soon as I take down the Christmas tree. Happy New Year!