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This is yet again, another post on making goals.  But as it involves those short-term goals, it should be the last of it's kind for at least several weeks if not several months.

After reading a chapter from the Stress and Relaxation Workbook last fall, I set out with a list of my ten top priorities in life:     fragonard-91063_1280

  1. God
  2. My Marriage
  3. My Children
  4. Health & Safety
  5. Homeschooling
  6. Writing
  7. Friends & Family
  8. Comfortable, nice clean home
  9. Financial Security
  10. Fun & Relaxation

The list is not necessarily in order- with the exception of #1 and #2- which are ALWAYS #1 and #2.                    marriage-478318_1280

With these priorities in mind, I developed a list of long-term, medium-term, and short-term goals.  While I've always been one to make a list of goals here and there, I've never thought about making sure they coincided with my top priorities or putting them in as clear of subcategories as long-term, medium term or short-term before.  So I started these lists last fall with this post.   It blew my Resolutions from 2014 out of the water because it was much more organized, concise and showed a definite correlation to all of my priorities and gave me an overall picture of how to go about accomplishing those BIG goals in little steps.

With the New Year approaching, I had a new sense of how to go about making those New Year's Resolutions.  My resolutions aren't really resolutions (a firm decision as to whether to do or not do something) but really GOALS.  They are the short-term goals (goals that can be accomplished within a few weeks up to one year) that will lead to the eventual ability to obtain those medium-term and then long-term goals.

So now- after a week or two of serious thought- here are my SHORT-TERM Goals of 2014- which of course can always be revised or updated as needed so long as they still coincide with that important list of priorities above:

1.   God  (Develop a union and closeness with God)

  • Set aside a minimum of 20 minutes for morning and mid morning or early afternoon prayer time (total)
  • Develop a morning prayer habit with family
  • Develop an evening prayer habit (set a copy of evening prayers inside current book I read at bedtime as a reminder!)
  • Develop a habit of saying Pre-Communion prayers with family on Saturday evenings.
  • Say the Jesus Prayer at various times throughout the day
  • Orthodox Reading - Read a book pertaining to Orthodoxy 1-2x a week other than devotion time
  • Attend Vespers services at least 1 time a month

2.  Marriage (Having a strong lasting relationship with my husband)

  • Establish a habit of a weekly date time (Every Monday and at least one extra activity every other week)
  • Read Love & Respect together and complete Workbook
  • Continue habit of reading together whenever time allows
  • Establish personal goals with my husband

3.  Children (For them to know I love them and to be a good Christian model to them)

  • Establish a habit of a weekly game night (quality, fun time)
  • Read with my oldest son at least 4x weekly
  • Read with my youngest at least 3 books daily in addition to our bedtime stories
  • Call my daughter at school weekly and text several times a week

4.  Health & Safety (REAL food and healthy environment)

  • Find Paleo websites/blogs with easy meal plans
  • Work on a new Monthly Menu Outline plan to make menu planning easier
  • Begin Freezing Meals so there is always at least 3 complete meals within the freezer ready to go!

5.  Homeschooling

  • Continue reading about and researching the Charlotte Mason method
  • Work on course descriptions for my son's transcript records
  • Work on developing a Home Ec course plan (we've decided to form our own)
  • Think over how to incorporate some Charlotte Mason methodology into my older son's coursework
  • Copy the Liturgy Book for my youngest son and highlight sections that he will now be expected to be at attention for and follow along

6.  Writing  (blogging and manuscripts)

  • Post  a minimum of 3 posts per week - with an eventual goal of 4-5.
  • Work on manuscripts at least 2x weekly, at least 3-4 hours (total), increasing in a few months.
  • Do writing exercises found in books and blogs on the craft
  • Read other blogs and comment on 3 per day

7.  Friends & Family

  • Make a list of friends and family I wish to maintain better contact with
  • Call (or text if they or I prefer) a minimum of 2 from the list each week (or have coffee if person is available to do so!)

8.   Comfortable, Clean Home

  • Use organization website to make plan of action to stay on task with minimum stress
  • Maintain morning and evening routine checklists
  • Declutter/Minimalize - read more on being a minimalist and make 1 new goal to work on every other week

9.  Financial Security

  • Create a system for organizing receipts to make my husband's job of maintaining checkbook and budget system easier
  • Add 'record receipts' to my To Do list at least 3 x week

10.  Fun and Relaxation

  • Game nights ( a repeat-  it's great to kill two birds with one stone! Unless of course, it's a real bird....that I wouldn't do)
  • Coffee Dates with Friends - I love to do this but for some reason it's hard for me to initiate....that introvert thing I guess...
  • Work on creating a list of small (short in duration) things to do that will put fun/relaxation into my days!

 

So there it is!  My current short -term goal list.  As you can see, some of them should be very easy to implement-  the goal there is to make it more of a HABIT while others may take many months or even the whole year to actually accomplish.  Either way, I will keep this list posted in my household binder where I'm sure to come upon it weekly to read over and remind myself what I'm to be working on and revise when and if necessary.  That can be to add more, take away any that are successfully obtained, or simply revise the number or frequency, etc.  If you want to see the long-term goals that got this started, go back to the original post last week.  The middle-term goals are here.

Do pray for me that I may stick with the plan and make progress, no matter how imperfectly it may occur!

Do you have any similar goals?

Is there anything in my list you  would like to see written about in a future post?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Who doesn't love books?

Okay, I realize there are a few but those are just crazy people....lol... actually, I believe  those people were just  never given the right books!  My true passion for books started with this one:

That's  how I started my post from last January in which  I made a list of the books I wanted to read  in 2014- you can see that list here.  With the end of the year fast approaching, I wanted to review my list- determine if I still want to read the remaining books that I never got around to reading or finishing, and make a new list for the upcoming year.

All of the  books from my 2014 list have been the main photograph of this blog all year. I went through and marked off all the books I actually did read- here they are:

NEWBERRY MEDAL BOOKS: 

And I just finally started reading last year's winner -  Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures by Kate DiCamillo!

HOMESCHOOL SOURCES:

THE WRITING CRAFT:

  • Writing Picture Books: A Hands on Guide From Story to Creation by Ann Whitford Paul (Still Working on this one!)
  • 2014 Children's Writer's & Illustrator's Market
  • A Family of Readers - The Book Lover's Guide to Children's and Young Adult Literature (Still Working on This!)
  • Honey For A Child's Heart - The Imaginative Use of Books in Family Life  (Still Working on This One Too!)

ORTHODOXY:

  • The Orthodox Study Bible - yes, I've already read it 🙂  But the bible is a daily must no matter how many times one has read it
  • 2014 Daily Lives, Miracles and Wisdom of the Saints (Fasting Calendar by The Orthodox Calendar Company)- I've used this periodically, but failed, I'm afraid, in reading it daily as intended.

 

OTHER FICTION:

PICTURE BOOKS:

  • TOO MANY TO LIST!!

Of Course, I DID stray from the list.... 

  • The Busy Mom's Guide to Romance by Heidi St. John
  • Who Moved My Cheese by Spencer Johnson
  • Clutter Free With Kids by Joshua S. Becker
  • Grain Brain by David Perlmutter  -  I'll be honest- I haven't completely finished this one either- but I do LOVE what I've read thus far and highly recommend this informative read.
  • The Emotionally Healthy Woman - I haven't finished this one either - I'm reading it with a wonderful group of women and thoroughly enjoying it.
  • Love and Respect - another one I've recently started.
  • Unglued - a great book by Lysa TerKeurst that I am actually rereading as I've mentioned in some posts.
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkiabn (a reread for me, a read-aloud with my son)
  • A Christmas Carol - Our Current Read-Aloud that we are sure to finish within a few days!

I have truly loved most of them.  There was only one or two that wasn't necessarily what I hoped it would be.  And I'm eager to finish the ones I'm reading now and move on to more.  So I'm thinking of starting a list now for 2015 - not that I think I NEED one to read- I just like having an idea, something to keep me from buying EVERY SINGLE BOOK I SEE that interests me- because if I don't have a list- It's very tempting to do just that.

books-389392_1280 book store
I would never bypass a good bookstore though-booklist or not 😉

 

What Was Your Favorite Book This Year?

Are there any that fall into my categories above?  Are there any other books that you would recommend for my To Read list for 2015?

 

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I woke up at 4:30 this morning.

Panicked.

Yikes.

There's only 9 Days Left?? Seriously?

Well, what I told myself would be my stress-free year of the hustle and bustle of December (okay, I admit it- I always shoot for that goal...) is probably the worst year ever for serious planning and doing it all (shopping, meal plans, etc. )stress free.  I have 9 days left to buy presents for my family & friends and figure out all of our plans, etc. and still somehow hold onto that holiday spirit and keep focused on the reason.

2014-12-16 06.16.36

So as I sit and write this post, I tell myself:  I will NOT come UNGLUED.  I will NOT come UNGLUED.

I realize I need to not only get busy online and order some things to put under our tree and give to others we love,  I also need to relish that part of the reason this month hasn't been all that organized is that I have taken some time to relax.  I've had some extra family time, time with my husband, time to travel and bring my daughter home from college and time to write some pretty good posts at the beginning of the month.  So these  past two weeks were productive - just not in getting my holiday plans and shopping done.

But now that the season is upon us with just 9 days left and trying not to panic, I need to figure out how to still get all that shopping done (under deadlines to get it all here on time since most of my shopping is done online as I can never find what I really want in the malls of Williamsport and it's just so much less time consuming to do it online anyway), plan our family time, travel time and yes, meal and yummy food planning and everything else that comes up ( a funeral, grocery shopping, household tasks and so on and still stay focused on the reason.

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So some things need to go.  🙁

It looks like the writing is the thing-

I've already not been able to work on the great ideas for posts I had for this December - guess I'll write those ideas down in a notebook for next year- but it is what it is. So please excuse me while I try to stay sane for the next two weeks and may not get around to posting much, or writing much at all.  It's disheartening really- after all the motivation I got from PiBoIdMo to not have had ANY time the last couple of weeks to even pick up a manuscript or even write down a single idea since December 1.   But I will try to stay upbeat about the great idea list I have written down from November and will do everything I can to get back on track for the new year -  which means I really should at least look over that resolution list and goal list I developed last year and truly think about what my priorities are to get me back on track.

In the meantime-

I hope YOU are staying focused on the REAL REASON for this holiday season.

What do YOU do, in the midst of panic and time crunches,  to stay focused on the reason?