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Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Goals for 2017

Every year I come up with a list of goals for myself, and our family, for the new year. I have read a lot about people choosing a WORD for the year and I really, really like that concept. I've thought on it a lot and have decided my word for 2017 is: PRODUCTIVE

Here's the definition of productive: "doing or achieving a lot : working hard and getting good results"

I debated beween intentional and productive but productive just resonates with me and I even say it out loud to myself as a reminder when I'm going down a non-productive path.

My days are busy and crazy. I'm usually doing multiple tasks at once with a list of several others to be working on. It's hard to always stay on task and remain productive in that task. I have found during times when I get a lot done and stick to a schedule that I FEEL better. I like that feeling of being productive and of knowing I got a lot of things accomplished in a given time period.

I want to be productive across the board. When I set time aside to play with my kids I want to be ACTIVELY playing with them. Productive in my play. Not sitting there thinking of the million other things I "should" be doing but be fully engaged in the moment, in that moment, and not allowing for any distractions. Soak in their stories, their joys, their giggles.

When I am working on the blog I want to be productive in it. Don't waste time scrolling Facebook or Pinterest, be productive. Stay on task. GET IT DONE.

Same goes for chores around the house, time with Zach, and especially time in the WORD. How often do we sit to study God's word and kinda zone out? Finally a moment to sit and the mind just wanders? I want to be productive in that time. Stay focused on HIM and limit those distractions.

I really am liking this as my word of the year. Last year was filled with a LOT of distractions. Lots of things on my mind that made it difficult to always focus on the tasks at hand. But I feel if I am focused on being productive in all that I do, that I will have more of that free time TO let myself think through things/process things. I also have found that my overall demeanor, sense of worth, and pride in myself is higher when I'm more productive in a day. Achieving things FEELS GOOD and I like going to bed at night feeling good :)

Do you have a word for the year?


I am still setting goals for this year as well! With adjusting to our new normal with Zach's medical health and hoping for a new baby in our family...we have to be goal oriented and have to be focused on a lot of things we need to achieve!

(These are in random order):

  1. Make the changes we need to make in our daily lives to best benefit Zach's health. 
  2. Get in the Word DAILY. (First 30 min of nap time at minimum) Continue working on reading through the Bible and spend more time in Prayer throughout the day with God.
  3. Go through everything in attic - choosing items of mine from childhood that girls can enjoy now and getting rid of things that aren't worth keeping.
  4. Spend under budget each month, find ways to maximize the amounts we can put towards mutual funds.
  5. Continue to step out in faith - with our adoption but also across the board.
  6. Continue to pour into my marriage. Meet his love language needs and be open in sharing my needs with him. Make date nights a priority and spend quality time together (not just tv watching! Maybe buy a board game to play together?)
  7. Have an awesome 33rd birthday (my lucky number is 33 so this is MY YEAR!)
  8. Look first at ways I can use my time, energy, money etc to best glorify GOD before using it in other areas.
  9. Be prepared for Tab to enter out family if we're blessed with his presence this year: have nursery completed by early June, stock up on diapers, find donor milk, go through all of Kye's baby clothes and organize. 
  10. Continue to draw closer to church family, form tighter bonds with fellow members, attend as many events and activities as possible. Host some events as well at our home.
  11. Be there for all of my sweet friends who may need encouragement, a good listener, and a good friend. Be the best friend I can be for others. They are all such blessings in my life!
  12. Trust in God's plan, purpose and timing for the competition of our family. Have faith and trust Him and just follow His lead on everything to come!
  13. Decide the best route for Britt for kindergarten (if they bring a 5 year old class to the preschool). Pray over that decision and really decide what is best for HER and our family.
  14. Help Kye to dig into God's Word and let the Lord guide me in answering his many tough questions. I know he's on that verge of really "getting it." I don't want to push him one way or the other so I want to just be there for him in the best way he needs me to be!
  15. Continue to invest in time for ME. Spending time with friends, or even just by myself. AND be supportive of Zach also getting HIS time for HIM!
  16. Fundraise the best we can (and the best we feel comfortable with) for the adoption: t-shirts, garage sale, etc. 
  17. Have weekly "business meetings" with Zach on Sunday nights to go over the week and just talk together. Share my heart with him. 
  18. Reach out to couples friends who we are interested in getting to know better. Invite them for dinner, form new friendship bonds as a couple. 
  19. Take a course on gun use and safety with Zach. Start to actually CARRY my gun on me!
  20. Consider the blog a JOB and no longer a HOBBY. Treat it like one. Grow it and grow the income from it so I can bless my family and help minimize Zach's stresses in the future. Think long term! But also maintain my primary focus of having a family journal for my kids to enjoy!
  21. Understand that I have no control over the future. Accept that the best I can. Make plans but be flexible in them. 
  22. Try to be in the bed by 10:30 each night. 
  23. Work through de-cluttering the house. Purge EVERYTHING possible and sell it to raise money for adoption fund. Less is more!
  24. Buckle down better on my personal eating. No more emotional grubbing out ;) Remember I want to feel confident for our anniversary trip in a bathing suit! Look good for my man!
  25. Work out 4-7 times a week. Elliptical as well as arm work outs. If foot does well, try mixing it up too.
  26. Pour Jesus into my children. Through our prayers, talks, readings, studies, and just my actions. Be that example of walking in the Light so I can give them an easy path to follow :) 
  27. Make a savings game plan for finishing upstairs room to allow Tess to move there at age 5. 
  28. Find a new balance for our family. With healthy eating. With budgeting. With scheduling. With exercise. We have a new normal and need to adjust to it! Praying by end of 2017 to feel like it's just the way we do things (be fully adjusted).
  29. Specific Blog Goals: get and stay on real time, figure out how to best utilize Pinterest, update all tabs completely, hit a month of earning my goal amount! 
  30. Have my "Emily Swag" back. Feel confident. Be happy! Find joy no matter what bc I am so, so blessed. 
  31. Have Tess completely out of diapers (night/nap trained) as well as pooping without issues on the potty. 
  32. Have better control over my deals obsession. Be mindful of purchases I make and even though it's a "deal" it doesn't mean I need to buy it!
  33. Continue to talk to Dad and Audrey on a regular basis, further grow those bonds for myself as well as kids and hopefully see them at least twice this year!
  34. Nightly family walks. 
  35. House Goals: Britt's room finished, Tab's room finished, fire pit, front porch railings, countertops, possibly new carpet, possibly all white trim painted. 
  36. Have all blog books printed (if possible)
  37. Spend one on one time with each child on a regular basis. Pour into them and our special bonds together. 
  38. Live it up with my Disney Annual Pass!
  39. Support the kids' interests. It's so great seeing Britt so passionate about gymnastics, foster that love for her but also help Kye find something to enjoy on that same level. 
  40. Fully enjoy our big 10 year anniversary trip! Relax together. Connect. Treat it like a second honeymoon! 
It's interesting to me that my list each year keeps getting shorter. I do think this current year I just have a different mind set and focus than I have in the past. I want to have goals but I have also learned that I'm not the one who is in control of how things will go down or if/when certain goals will be achieved. And that's okay! I like to have things to work on and work towards and I know 2017 will be a GREAT year but also one with a TON of unknowns. We don't have a CLUE what will happen with Tab. We don't have a CLUE how Zach's health stuff will work out. And all of that is okay. We know God has us! We are letting Him take control and will sit back and enjoy the ride (really let that be a goal too: ALLOW myself to ENJOY the ride no matter what that ride may include!). 

Year End Review: 2016

Every year I make a list of goals for the year and then at the end of the year I come back and review those goals to see how I did. I haven't read over my 2016 goals list in a hot minute so I have a feeling I did pretty sucky with completing the list during the year. I know I have a plethora of excuses as to why I didn't get 'em done and I'm pretty sure the craziness of 2016 will also change the way I make my goals for 2017. Here's a review of my goals for 2016 and how I did with each:


  1.   his 
  2.  : THIS ANNOYS ME TO DEATH. STILL don't have this resolved. It's ridiculous. Zach was at a STOP LIGHT and a guy RAMMED in the back of his car in 2014 and yet the insurance company is STILL not making things right with us! UGH. It's out of our hands though and we just have to wait and wait and wait. 
  3.  
  4.  : Zach and Kye did good working through Bible Studies together but the site I used for the free weekly studies quit having them so I'm needing to find something for them to do together. Kye does a lot on his own (Bible Reading and devo) and then I read with both Britt and Kye at night before bed but I do need to do better with reading during lunch!
  5.  
  6.  : Well we didn't tackle it all (again, valid excuses!) but the big ones got knocked out: outdoor kitchen and the storage room off the playroom. We got the rooms all transferred for the new baby and got the kitchen lighting situation panned out as well as trim around the cabinets. 
  7.  
  8.  
  9.   
  10.    : I'm just not an "on the whim" person and I go through stages of LOVING hosting and LOVING doing things with others and then stages where I just wanna be a hermit with my core family and that's it. I do think the house is more picked up than before and cleaner too (and I'm doing a declutter challenge that should help!)
  11.  
  12.  
  13.  
  14.   
  15.  
  16.   
  17.  : I think I did well with this too? One compliment I take the most pride in is when people say I'm an encourager :) 
  18.  
  19.  
  20.   
  21.  
  22.  
I didn't do as bad as I had thought I'd do :) It's always fun (and motivating!) to look back over the year and see areas of growth as well as those that need further work in the coming year. You can look back at all of my year end reviews here:


Monday, January 30, 2017

2016 In Pictures

Every year since I first started blogging I've done a "year in pictures" post at the end of each year. 2016 was no walk in the park for our family and we're thankful to put it behind us! Here are the highlights from our year (with links to each corresponding post):

January



February











March









April











May









June















July















August









September















October













November











December













So I kinda thought when I did this post it'd make me realize that 2016 wasn't that tough of a year buttttt nope. It was rough haha! You can look back at much sunnier years for our family here:



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