Monday, January 30, 2012

January goals update

Ok, so January is almost over.  Time to check in on my goals and progress this month....

I originally posted my goals for the year here. I have found that having my goals written down and reviewing them periodically has really helped me to stay on track. 

Reading -Finished the following books
  • Ten P's in a Pod
  • The Help (well, almost, but I will have it finished by Feb 1st!)

Education -
We are visiting the library every week, and Eli knows exactly where the Boxcar Children books are.  Although I'm still working on reading aloud to the kids every day, we have read Blue Hill Meadows, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, If You Give a Moose a Muffin, Eli Whitney, Uncle Jed's Barbershop, and Why Alligator Hates Dog.

The current library stack

We have not yet started the The Chronicles of Narnia, but it is on the iPod, and I think we will start it on our long drive to Orlando in February.

Personal Goals
  • Weight loss - I've only lost 1 pound since posting about losing the baby weight from the past 8 years, but considering that my husband brought home Krispy Kreme doughnuts one night, followed by the crazy idea I had to make homemade oatmeal creme pies the same week, I think I'm doing good to have not gained any weight this month!
  • Run a 5K - I've completed 2 weeks of training and there is a noticeable improvement in my endurance, although I am still in the very beginning stages of running and my speed leaves a lot to be desired.
  • Wake up at 6:30 on weekdays....FAIL!  I'm doing good to get out of bed by 7:15.  Maybe I should start utilizing the nifty little invention that sits beside my bed.  It's called an alarm clock, I think....
  • Freezer cooking - I had a "mini" freezer prep day chopping and freezing veggies to prevent having to take out 1 or 2 peppers, the cutting board and knife 3 or 4 nights a week.  Now they are already ready and I just have to scoop out what I need for each recipe.  It has worked great!  I also had one full freezer cooking day this month and loved it!  The "plan" I followed is pictured below.  I accomplished everything on the list, resulting in at least 16 easy to put together meals.  I liked focusing on one meat all day and plan to do beef when we butcher a steer in February or March. 

The freezer plan

  • New DIY projects - I've successfully made wheat thins, cheese crackers, oatmeal creme pies, hummus and bubble bath so far. I've also attempted pita bread twice now, and while my family loves the bread and I have made some great toasted "pita" chips with it, it never puffed up the way pita bread should, leaving the middle pocket.  Therefore, I can't really call it pita bread...maybe just round sandwich bread.
Oatmeal creme pies....put Little Debbie to shame

Cheese crackers....If you like baked on, crunchy cheese, these are for you!

Garlic hummus with "pita" chips

  • Involve the kids in cooking - They helped with several of the projects above, but I am still struggling with the frustration of having kids on the counter looking over my shoulders and 3 chairs pulled up to the counter (blocking every drawer or cabinet I need to get in)!  Eli and Maggie especially love to measure out the wheat that I need and then monitor the grinder while it is grinding.  
  • Go to bed with a clean kitchen - I've been successful most nights, but my wonderful husband has often helped out.
  • Praise music - I started out good the first 2 weeks, especially when I was cooking, but lately I have been listening on my own when I am out running or walking. 
  • Pray through our Christmas Cards - Inconsistent at best, but the funny thing is, when I was praying for each of the first four families, I always included the baby that was in the mommy's tummy, and when we were finished my kids said, "I didn't know Mrs. so-and-so had a baby in her tummy."  We then came to a family whose children are grown and have kids of their own, and my kids asked, "Does she have a baby in her tummy too?"
  • Reducing clutter - In progress....My specific goal for January has been to prepare and sort all the clothes for Kids' Market in preparation to move them out of the house the first weekend in March.  This includes all the remaining maternity clothes, baby girl clothes (and shoes, hats, bibs, socks, blankets, etc) newborn-5T, and all infant boy clothes that Cooper has outgrown.  A very big undertaking....  Although the clothes are still taking up 2/3 of my closet, almost all of them (that I have hangers for) are hanging and tagged.  I've actually established a system for "decluttering" that has worked wonderfully for the Kids' Market clothes that I will implement in other areas of the house later in the year and blog about as well.
About 1/3 of the Kids' Market....
  • Taking pictures - FAIL!  The only progress I have made here is ordering some hard copies of pictures we took last year.  I need to get on the ball before my kids are grown!
  • College Funds - up to date and in progress
  • Dining Room furniture - The plan is to look at furniture in March and probably purchase in April.

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