A Shift in Goals

In August 2020 I made a 101 in 1001 list. I actually worked pretty hard on it and put a lot of thought into it. But life has been unpredictable for the past 18 months and my priorities have shifted. Many of the goals aren’t as important or achievable as they once were… So I’m going to press pause on the 101-in-1001 and shift to a 35×35 schedule.

I’m planning to reuse some of my unachieved goals because there are quite a few I’d like to see through… just not all 101. So here is my revised list for my 35×35. I have a few years to accomplish these; I’m currently 31. I think.

  1. Re-read HP 4, 5, 6, & 7 illustrated versions; as available
  2. Stop biting my nails FOR GOOD
  3. Stop scrolling in bed
  4. Create a home master list
  5. Build shade/covering for back deck
  6. Landscape backyard
  7. Change out kitchen dishes & glassware
  8. Finish paying off credit cards
  9. One month shopping ban
  10. Open and contribute to retirement
  11. Perfect the art of pie making
  12. Scrapbook marriage years (6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12)
  13. Celebrate our 10 year anniversary with a fun trip
  14. Find a church home
  15. Adopt a family for Christmas
  16. Visit Disney World with K&M
  17. 4 new NASCAR tracks
  18. See the West Coast
  19. Travel to an all-inclusive again
  20. Take M to Williamsburg
  21. Go on a girls’ trip
  22. Visit Nantucket with M
  23. Stick to a gratitude journal every day for a month
  24. Leave 5 inspirational notes for strangers to find
  25. Write a letter to 40-year-old-me
  26. Go white water rafting
  27. Visit a National Park
  28. Meet a blog friend in person
  29. Leave a 100% tip for good service
  30. Finish our wedding book
  31. Invite neighbors for dinner
  32. Plan/host a block party
  33. Paint a picture
  34. Take photos of the same location through all 4 seasons
  35. Spot a shooting star

Some of these are big, some are not. Even with the ‘demic going on, I think I can achieve many of these. You can find this list under the tab at the top of the page (35 x 35).

Any big goals you’re working on this year (or in the next 4)?

-Aud

What I Read…

It’s the first Show Us Your Books link-up in the new year! (Lots of love & appreciation to our hosts, Jana and Steph!) I’m currently in the middle of four books right now, but I have two ready to go for today.

I started/finished one last year, then finished the second one in 2022.

The title sends you to GoodReads, the “buy it” goes to an affiliated link on on BookShop!

Off Season by Jennifer Weiner | Horror/Suspense | ★★★/5
This was a strange one… It’s a short story and one that almost reminds you of The Lottery by Shirley Jackson. It was quick and definitely creepy, but it felt like it was missing something. I’m not sure what I was wanting, but it didn’t fully deliver.
highlight for trigger warning: animal violence

A Season for Second Chances by Jenny Bayliss | Romance | ★★★★★/5
What a way to kick off the year, right?? There wasn’t anything mind-blowing in this cute little novel, but I didn’t have a single complaint. It was slow and cozy, not too much spicy in the bedroom department (which never bothers me but I know some people dislike that), and the characters were lovely. Honestly, it’s a perfect fall-to-winter read. Apparently I’m a Jenny Bayliss fan!
Buy it!

Moo Reads

The child is o.b.s.e.s.s.e.d. with reading. And no one is mad about it 😊
*titles go to an affiliated link on BookShop!

Little Blue Truck’s Christmas by Alice Schertle
M has the first page memorized. We love the lights on the last page the most, though!

Little Excavator by Anna Dewdney
Again, M has certain parts memorized. We love all the construction sounds in this one.

Home for the Holidays by Sesame Workshop
I wasn’t going to give M this one until next Christmas, but she saw Elmo on it and we’ve read it every single night since. It’s a beautiful book with a bunch of different winter celebrations in it!

I didn’t tackle any books for Erin’s Challenge so I’m not including that this month. I created an account on The Story Graph, though. You can follow me or be my friend here.

What did you read?

-Aud

Amazoning in the New Year

Hello all. I love shopping small & local, but the convenience of Amazon wins out pretty often in my life. And I’ve finally stopped being lazy and registered for an affiliated link (woo!), so I will earn a penny or two for M’s piggy bank*.

*her piggy bank is actually a fox

Most of these items are Christmas gifts, but some after post-holiday purchases and some are things I ordered for myself. As I mentioned, I make a tiny profit from sales through these links 🖤

New Books for M

Olya shared a bunch of marked down books on her IG last week. So naturally I stocked up for trips, holidays, birthdays, and just-becauses.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas | Home for the Holidays | Decorate A Christmas Tree | The Monster at the End of This Book | The Nutcracker

Gifts for the Critters

We like to spoil our pets and other people’s pets during the holidays. The vegetable squeaky toys were a big hit with our neighbors’ 6 month old puppy!

Automatic feeder | Doorbuddy | Buddy Biscuits | Chew Toys

Stuff for M

Both M’s big birthday gift and big Christmas gift came from Amazon. She got these awesome stepping stones for her b-day and this kitchen for Christmas. Both have provided hours of entertainment!

Stepping Stones | Step2 Kitchen | Sesame Street buddies

Stuff for Me

I decided to stop scrolling in bed and the easiest way to do that was to charge my phone across the room at night. But my phone was my alarm clock… so I needed a new one. I opted for this sunrise-simulating one. Way less $$ than a Hatch, but it’s actually been really nice.

The blue light glasses & cheetah flats were practical and beneficial purchases. The bag was purchased as a snack/toy travel bag for M. I actually keep it in my car right now, but it’s a great bag! Big, sturdy, tons of pockets!

Alarm clock | blue light glasses | cheetah flats | travel bag

We still have one more Christmas to go to, so I didn’t want to share ALL the things I’ve purchased. I’m linking up with Tanya for Prime Purchases.

What did you buy this month from Amazon? (Or Etsy! Or your local store!)

-Aud

Bring on the New Year – 2021 Recap

Let’s walk 2021 to the door and maybe lock it once they’re gone… It wasn’t the worst houseguest we’ve ever had- we didn’t kick them out- but I’d be content if they never came back. Ya know?

Honestly, this year was more difficult for me than the dreaded 2020. Events were held, but it was a risk to attend. I felt itchy and wanted to take M to explore… but things aren’t quite right yet. We had a pretty slow and quiet year. (2020 was wonderful with an infant/baby… so much alone time and bonding and no where to be. Social distancing with a toddler is… rough.) We tried to do a family vacation but our vehicle broke down. Then I had not one, but TWO canceled trips later in the year. Sigh. It wasn’t my year to travel. M was sick quite a bit, too, but none of us caught the big C19, so I’m grateful. (Hand foot and mouth wasn’t a walk in the park for any of us, though. SHEESH.)

Anyway… there were good moments, too. We added kitties to the (office) family. We added a car to the garage (& now we need a bigger garage). K and M both had necessary and beneficial surgeries. My two best friends got married (to other people, lol). And we went on some great camping trips. We are healthy and comfortable and all together. I can’t complain much.

I’m looking forward to 2022, though. I’m putting it out there in the universe. Lord, give us a good one 🖤

On to the photo collages…

New Year’s Day | M can walk! | 🖤 | K’s surgery | Bristol is 2 | A trip to FL to love on Aub | Snow Day | Valentine’s Day | Joining A&M’s wedding party!
A visit from Aub | Kayla’s bachelorette party | Kayla’s bridal shower | bed head | K’s bday | St. Patrick’s Day | camping at Bristol | dirt racing at Bristol | Easter
Mowing with Dad | new scooter | visiting Dad at work | 8th wedding anniversary | Fridays with Andria | sick baby | rehearsal dinner | Kayla’s getting married! | Kayla’s wedding
camping with friends | Memorial Day | Mid Ohio racing | welcome Mac & Cheese! | splash pad with F&C | Father’s Day | bike rides | 4th of July Indy Cars | ear tube surgery for M
farm visits | K behind the drums | Frankenmuth | Boyne Falls, MI | family | spa weekend with Aub | 🖤 | DCI in Indy | science center with friends
Labor Day | rehearsal dinner | Aub’s getting married! | Aubrey’s wedding | county fair | fall festival | my bday camping | pumpkin patch | new car!
gender reveal for Kayla | Halloween | PASIC in Indy | Christmas trees | Thanksgiving | Moo turns Two!| Kayla’s baby shower | Christmas | lounging before the new year

Looking back through my pictures to make this post is such a happy experience for me. Now that M is in the picture, it’s wild to see her growth over 12 months. But to be honest, K and I grow significantly every year, too.

What were your favorite moments of 2021?

-Aud

What I Read… in 2021

Very OK with saying “goodbye” to 2021. Hopefully there’s more health, wealth, and reading in the new year. Honestly, just the first of those three would be fantastic.

Number Of Books You Read: 20
Genre You Read The Most From: Thriller/Mystery

*Last year I read 13 books, so I like the way I’m trending. My GR goal was 15 so I reached that one. Next year we’re upping it to 20.

best-YA-books-2014

1. Best Book You Read In 2021?

We Are the Brennans [Tracey Lange] & Malibu Rising [Taylor Jenkins Reid]

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You’d Love But Didn’t?

Bringing Down the Duke [Evie Dunmore]

 3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?  

The Great Train Robbery [Michael Crichton] – I thought I’d like it more…

 4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read?

The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina [Zoraida Córdova]

 5. Best series you started/sequel/series ender of 2021?

Finally finished the Cursebreakers Series- A Vow so Bold & Deadly [Briged Kemmerer].

6. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

I usually say thrillers are out of my wheelhouse, but I read quite a few this year. I read a nonfiction race/social justice book, though, and that was a first for me: White Fragility [Robin DiAngelo].

 7. Most action-packed/thrilling/un-put-down-able book of the year?

I honestly couldn’t put down We Are the Brennans.

8. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2021?

Book Cover

9. Most memorable character of 2021?

I find myself thinking about the characters in Malibu Rising fairly often.

 10. Most beautifully written book read in 2021?

I really loved reading The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina.

11. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2021?

Definitely No Bad Kids [Janet Lansbury] and One and Only [Lauren Sandler]

12. Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2021?

Off Season [Jennifer Weiner] – 26 pages
A Vow so Bold & Deadly – 408 pages

13. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

Marimar & Rey (The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina)

14. Favorite Book You Read in 2021 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

Malibu Rising

15. Best Book You Read In 2021 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:

The Wife Stalker [Liv Constantine]

And now the graphs…

What was your favorite book of 2021?

(Thank you for hosting this link-up, Steph & Jana!!)

-Aud