Thankful Thursday

Happy Friday Eve ❤️ I actually don’t like calling it that because I think it slights Thursday, but oh well.

I’m linking up with Rebecca Jo today with a gratitude list.

Family that’s always available and willing to watch Moo. We’ve had some weird, inconsistent weeks lately so M has spent quality time with family. I don’t take their flexibility, patience, or proximity for granted.

My Freelance Job. On a whim I applied and was hired for a freelance position with a local news website that is specifically aimed at moms. I write informative campaigns, not opinion pieces. It’s nice to flex my writing muscles and put my spin on every day topics and news.

Bristol the Pistol. Bristol turned 2 last month and started (her second attempt at) obedience school this month. She’s a Husky-handful through and through, but she’s a good girl. And she is incredible with M. Moo is testing limits and in an aggressive-love phase, but Bristol is a champ.

The B to my D. Both of my best friends are marrying the loves of their lives this year 😊 My best friend Aubrey is tying the knot in SEVEN MONTHS and just asked me to be a part of the wedding party. She and her fiancee have a combined wedding party- only people they both know and love. I am so damn honored to be one of these people. I’ve known Aubrey since we were 10 and seeing her with Megan makes my heart so happy. Once she’s hitched, Aub, Kayla, and I will officially have all been in each other’s weddings 🖤

New Book Club. I love my blog friends and I LOVE being in a book club with my blog friends. In the time of corona I will take any safe get-together I can find, but it’s 100xs better when it’s with my internet friends.

What are you feeling grateful for?

Things That Go Better When I Slow Down

The world is in a forced slow (shut) down but that doesn’t mean we’re relaxed or living slowly or enjoying each moment. Chances are you’re mostly freaking stressed.

Me too. This isn’t a blog about that.

Instead, I have found some specific day-to-day things that seem to go a lot better when I just slow the heck down and refrain from “forcing it.” And I included some unrelated baby pictures from our social isolation.

Doing my hair

When I put M down for a nap or bedtime

Baking

Dog walks

Scrapbooking

Math

Building furniture

Planning a trip or vacation

Packing for a trip

Clipping my nails

Editing a blog post or article

I’ve tried speeding through all of these tasks and things have gone terribly awry. This is a tested list. Lol

What tends to go better when you slow the heck down?

My Favorite Person

Today is K’s 32nd birthday. We took this week off and away from work. We’re attempting to relax and forget about the craziness of this time of year.

I’m willing to skip book day for K’s BIG 3-2 bday, so check in tomorrow for a special Wednesday book post! (I met K when he was 18. HOW THE EFF IS HE 32!?)

I’m keeping it short and sweet. Here are a few of my favorite things about Kyle:

  • his love of dogs
  • his generous, giving heart
    (he seems like a tough cookie, but he’s so giving)
  • he’s a natural with babies and kids
  • he & my dad hang out all the time
  • his car knowledge
  • his vehicle skills- he can drive a truck & trailer, a manual vehicle, a semi truck, a motorcycle, etc.
  • the way he talks about me when I’m around AND when I’m not
  • his subtle protectiveness of me & my feeling
  • he is a feminist and doesn’t ever question my (or any other female’s) ability to do something because I’m a woman
  • I have never seen him show off (or “flex” as the kids say) to prove his manliness
  • he understands that after a social weekend I just need to be alone
  • he knows when to tease me and when to lift me up
  • his love of history and learning (despite not being a reader)
  • his grilling
  • his nose
  • he’s loyal to the core
  • he is honest and doesn’t resort to flattery or brown nosing to gain someone’s approval
  • actually, he just doesn’t give a damn about seeking approval
  • he listens and pays attention
  • he works hard to keep our marriage fair and healthy and top priority
  • his business mindset and professional drive
  • his acceptance of failure and mistakes- his own & others
  • his promptness
  • he is kind, even when he doesn’t want to be
  • he goes out of his way to make me feel loved and happy

Alright- that’s enough. Happy Birthday, Kyle. I love you today & every day.

 

 

2019 Resolutions

I love a fresh new year.

K doesn’t get into the hype of it all, but I do. And I set enough goals for the both of us. Lol. I kid. Last year was nuts and out of control and I feel lucky that everything ended up great. I’m sure experts would shake their heads at this next declaration, but I want a little more control over 2019.

We do so many things by the seat of our pants. Big spending decisions, last minute vacations, business moves (granted, the business is where we have the most control- sometimes we just end up utilizing that final hour). This year I’d like to be on top of this stuff.

I already think 2019 feels good. We have multiple work trips planned, a few weddings on the books, and an idea or two for vacation and home improvements and the like. We kicked off the new year with family and friends, & I’m determined to keep this excellent year on track.

I’m linking up with Kristen since these resolutions are, in fact, what’s new with me.

Sometimes I do a word for the year, sometimes I do goals. This year it’s resolutions (a.k.a. pretty much goals).

Read 40 books.
I pushed for 50 books in 2018 and I didn’t get there. I don’t have any issue lowering my goal so it’s attainable and, therefore, motivating. I think I’ll hit 40 without an issue.

Read Through My Own Books
As a sub-category to my book goal, I’d like to get through some of my shelved books- both electronic and physical. And then get rid of the ones that I just don’t like.

Work on my marriage habits.
Recently I read a book called It Takes One to Tango (recommended by Stephanie) and I listened to The Life Coach School Podcast: Episode #165 “How to Be a Good Mate” (recommended by Lindsay). I have a very good marriage with a really great guy, but I know there’s room for improvement- especially after reading/listening to these resources. So it’s something I’d like to be conscious of and improve upon.

Keep a gratitude journal.
Bloggers Chelsea and Steph and Rebecca Jo swear by the gratitude lists/journals/lifestyle. I know I have the ability to stick with something like this- I did a year-long journal for Kyle once- but I never push myself. This year, I’m going to try it.

Budget.
I’m not sure how or to what extent, but we don’t track our money well. We both have lofty financial goals we’d like to achieve and obviously that won’t happen unless we get serious about our spending and saving.

Work on sticking to a consistent schedule.
This is a multi-step resolution. And I don’t see myself improving in all these areas, at least not all at once. But these are my major focuses:

  • Sleep schedule
  • Exercise schedule
  • Cleaning schedule
  • Meal planning

And that about does it. I know some of these are spelled-out goals (like the # of books and the journal) and some of these are a little vague (like the budget, ha), but I like to have a little wiggle room in my future.

K and I need to be better about giving ourselves permission to CHECK OUT. He carries the weight of eight employees and multiple business deals and abc and xyz. He’s terrible at checking out- unless he’s totally burnt out. And a burnt out Kyle is NOT my favorite Kyle. I really want us to take steps toward handling the stress, taking some breaks, and not feeling guilty for keeping US a priority.

Now tell me about your goals or resolutions or word(s) for 2019! Let’s talk about our vision for the year and how we can keep one another on track!

**I freshened up my blog for the new year. I updated my picture (finally) & I cleaned some stuff up. Feedback, please- is the font too small?

Like I said, linking up with Kristen for What’s New With You?.

How To: Achieve Goals

I inadvertently started a “series” last summer when I wrote a post called How To: Host a Garage Sale. (I’ve also done less formal how-tos on meal planning and “getting” happy.) I’m not an expert on anything, but sometimes I find tips that work pretty well for me & I get the nerve to share them.

With 2019 right around the corner (and my winter goals laid out last week), I feel naturally inspired to make & meet some long term goals. How can I make my life better? How can I make life better for others? What are some changes that I can enact to improve my quality of life and my happiness and the impact I have on the world?

Deep questions.

Let’s take a pretty common goal and use it as an example for most of my tips:

Losing weight/Getting healthy

  1. Break it into smaller goals. Instead of declaring a ban on ALL sugar, start with cutting out pop (or soda for you not-Midwesterners) or refuse dessert. Instead of cutting all carbs, start with avoiding bread, then slowly add in pasta, etc.
  2. Spread out the lifestyle adjustments. I know some people can quit things cold turkey or dive head first into a new habit. I cannot and I fail when I try. I like to implement something for a week or month, then add onto that. Walk a few miles every morning & lift weights for a month. Then add 15 minutes of the elliptical in exchange for that time on the treadmill. Build up your intensity. Essentially ease into the cold water, don’t just cannonball into the pool.
    (Funny enough, I DO just cannonball into pools. I hate easing into it.)
  3. Invest money. If you’re a number cruncher or penny pincher, invest some cash money into your goals. Get the gym membership, sign up for the yoga package, etc. I know there are inexpensive ways to work out or organize your life or read more, but if you HATE getting no return on your investment, force yourself to earn that return.
  4. You don’t have to be an expert. I like to feel 100% confident when I do things. If I’m feeling self conscious, my anxiety creeps in and I abandon ship. I had NO idea how to do a rowing class and I was the slowest/weakest/most out of breath human in the room after my first class. (Still am, lol.) It was terrifying to move out of the introductory class into the main class with all the pros. I don’t like being the last one across the finish line- but you have to start somewhere. I go to the “big kids” class and I am the slowest rower and I don’t die of shame. So that’s a start. (Same with barre now. YIKES.)
  5. Ask others for their support (or doubt). I appreciate support from my husband when I’m trying something new. I feed off of doubt from others. Take what you need from those who love you and don’t be afraid to ask for the tough love if that’s what kicks you in the pants.
  6. Remember why you started. If you’re working out, maybe it’s because you want to feel healthier. If you’re trying to organize, maybe it’s to achieve peace of mind at home. If you’re aiming to write every single day, maybe it’s to finish the novel. Just make sure you’re doing whatever you’re doing for you.
  7. Setbacks are ok and normal. We all fall off the horse or skip the gym or each an entire sheet cake. It’s OK. You’re human and humans sometimes go off the rails. Refer back to #6 and make the decision to keep. going.

I’ll say it again: I’m not an expert. I’m a professional amateur at procrastinating and making excuses, though. I fail over and over; it’s human. These are just some tips that work (85% of the time) for me.

What to you do to achieve your goals? Are you a cold turkey kind of person? What tips have worked for you in the past?