Year End Review: 2017

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Growing up I had a really awesome daily journal where I wrote a bit about each day and it had a place to write goals for the coming year as well as look over the past year and kinda summarize it and see if you met the goals you had set for yourself (It was very similar to this one…I was just thinking it’d be a great gift for the kids. Maybe as a 10th birthday gift?)


When I started blogging I thought it’d be a nice thing to continue the journal here. My blogging purpose has always been first and foremost to have a place to be myself and to create something for my children to have someday in order to remember their lives but also to truly know their mama as a real person and my real thoughts etc on the events in our lives. 


I wrote out my goals for 2017 in this post and today I’m going through those goals to see how I did:

  1. Make the changes we need to make in our daily lives to best benefit Zach’s health. : A lot of this Zach has taken on for himself and wants to handle on his own. He’s done a wonderful job of making small adjustments as well as larger ones to benefit his health. He’s mindful of the heat and always has water and cooling cloths, he takes daily vitamins, he’s eating healthier, he prioritizes sleep. Obviously it’s a new thing for us and will take lots of time and commitment to adjust and to tweak things as needed but so far it’s been going very well!
  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.: I feel so guilty every year because I make this goal and then don’t follow through with it. I got in a good grove for a bit but then struggled. It’s HARD. This season of life is BUSY and it’s hard to take the time I’m supposed to take to give to the Lord. Always something I need to work on. 
  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.: Shoot. I didn’t even remember this goal. That’s a good one and something we DO need to do!
  4. Spend under budget each month, find ways to maximize the amounts we can put towards mutual funds.: Ha. Ha. Funny to have that goal the same year we adopted a baby. I felt like the theme of 2017 was just pouring out money. Hoping 2018 will be better for the budget!
  5. Continue to step out in faith – with our adoption but also across the board.: The step in faith in the adoption has been a GAME CHANGER for our family and for myself and my personal growth. I’m stepping out more in ALL areas and just really trusting God fully!
  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?): This is also something we need to do better with. Sometimes I make these types of goals without really thinking through the reality. Hello we have a NEW BABY. Kinda hard to really spend a lot of quality time together and I know this coming year will be tough with that too as it’s hard to ask for childcare for FOUR kids, especially one being a newborn. 
  7. Have an awesome 33rd birthday (my lucky number is 33 so this is MY YEAR!): With Spear’s due date being around my birthday we kept it low key but I’m SUPER EXCITED to celebrate a late birthday celebration in May when Zach and I do a combo birthday/christmas and anniversary trip!
  8. Look first at ways I can use my time, energy, money etc to best glorify GOD before using it in other areas.: I’m def doing better with this! I’m learning to say no and to really keep what’s a top priority at the top!
  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. : We were VERY prepared for his arrival! 
  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.: It’s hard writing this during this season with a new baby but prior to his birth I feel I did very well in this area!
  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!: One of my themes for 2018 will be about this, I am focusing on pouring into friendships that are a give and take relationship rather than just ones that take. I think I did pretty good as a fellow friend to others this last year…some relationships struggled but it was an opportunity for me to learn and grow!
  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!: Sometimes that faith was hard. And that trust was hard. But it was ALL WORTH it for our sweet boy!!!!
  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.: We ended up not having to choose but it all worked out well for her to be a school with Kye. She loves it and is doing awesome!
  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!: This is something that will continue in 2018. I think he’s learning and growing a TON and is at that age where he’s really starting to get it on a new level!
  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!: I’ve done very well with this! Both in prioritizing time for myself and supporting Zach in having that time too. 
  16. Fundraise the best we can (and the best we feel comfortable with) for the adoption: t-shirts, garage sale, etc. : I have a bit of a bad taste in my mouth about the fundraising stuff. I didn’t feel very comfortable with it to begin with and should have just trusted my gut on that. I love and appreciate ALL the support for our family but wish we’d just left it at the shirts and garage sale!
  17. Have weekly “business meetings” with Zach on Sunday nights to go over the week and just talk together. Share my heart with him. : Need to get back in this routine but we did do very well with it last year and are doing really awesome on being better at clearly communicating and making sure we know plans and such (it helps having a new baby b/c we’re forced to make sure we have every kid covered!)/ 
  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. : We were awesome at this prior to Spear’s birth! We had several friends over and spent time working on hanging out with other couples. This is something I hope to continue once we’re fully settled into a solid routine with Spear. 
  19. Take a course on gun use and safety with Zach. Start to actually CARRY my gun on me!: STILL NEED TO DO THIS. It’s hard b/c it’s a dang SATURDAY and an all day thing. Who wants to spend a whole Saturday? Not 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!: I’m doing great at this too! While I’m super behind on my posting, I don’t regret taking the breaks I needed when Spear was born and I am getting back on track and excited for the big blog changes to come this year!
  21. Understand that I have no control over the future. Accept that the best I can. Make plans but be flexible in them. : YES. Doing great at this!
  22. Try to be in the bed by 10:30 each night. : Doing great at this too!
  23. Work through de-cluttering the house. Purge EVERYTHING possible and sell it to raise money for adoption fund. Less is more!: This is also going well. It’s always going to be a work in progress as I don’t see us being truly simple life kinda people but it’s good to always work on and I earned over $1000 from kids sale earnings for the adoption which was awesome!
  24. Buckle down better on my personal eating. No more emotional grubbing out πŸ˜‰ Remember I want to feel confident for our anniversary trip in a bathing suit! Look good for my man!: I felt SUPER confident in May for our anniversary! The emotional eating did come back into play with all the emotions of adoption, especially once we were matched. 
  25. Work out 4-7 times a week. Elliptical as well as arm work outs. If foot does well, try mixing it up too.: Did great with this up until adding a new baby 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 πŸ™‚ : This would be a question to my kids but I think I’m doing pretty well with this? Always wanting to grow and improve
  27. Make a savings game plan for finishing upstairs room to allow Tess to move there at age 5. : This plan and path kinda got derailed with other financial changes but it’s something we do need to have on the agenda for the future as I’m pumped for a “mom cave” area πŸ˜‰
  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).: I’d say by June-July we were living that new normal! Obviously we have to adjust to another new normal now but since Spear is now sleeping through the night I’m confident we’ll be back to that June Parker Family style soon πŸ˜‰
  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! : I hit my monthly goal earning amount in December for the first time! YAY! Def making BIG progress in all of these areas!
  30. Have my “Emily Swag” back. Feel confident. Be happy! Find joy no matter what bc I am so, so blessed.: YES! This is def going well too!!!
  31. Have Tess completely out of diapers (night/nap trained) as well as pooping without issues on the potty.: We’re there! It’s so great how independent she is!
  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!: Also have done SO great with this! I was very proud of all the gifts we gave the kids at Christmas this year because I got awesome deals but also only bought things I knew they’d truly love and enjoy. I’m finding that balance!
  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!: We did get to see them twice and talked much more often! SO thankful for them!
  34. Nightly family walks.: This was a great thing and something I’m eager to start back up once we get it figured out with Spear’s schedule. 
  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. : Britt’s room is done, Spear’s room is done, porch railings are done! Hoping for the fire pit next and then countertops (considering diy concrete ones?) and carpet and trim are hopeful for next year
  36. Have all blog books printed (if possible): I’m finally where we can make that happen and plan to ASAP! 
  37. Spend one on one time with each child on a regular basis. Pour into them and our special bonds together.: This is something I’m proud that I’m pretty good at doing! I love quality one on one time!
  38. Live it up with my Disney Annual Pass!: Two solo days plus a day with Spear when he was a newborn? I def lived it up!
  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.: I still don’t think we have found Kye’s “thing.” He liked football okay but he didn’t LOVE it the way Britt loves gymnastics. I’m hoping he’ll explore other interests this year to really find what clicks for him. 
  40. Fully enjoy our big 10 year anniversary trip! Relax together. Connect. Treat it like a second honeymoon!: It was a WONDERFUL trip together and so so fun! As was Hawaii! We had some great bonding time together in 2017 which I’m so thankful for!

Here’s a look back at how I did meeting my goals each year in the past:

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

journeyofphood

Hey Guys, I’m Emily! I’m a stay at home mom and consider parenting to be my passion. Disney is my happy place and I love making memories as a family together. I’m a big believer in transparency and share all of my real-life moments as a mother of four.

My work has been featured on Today Parenting and Chronicles of a Babywise Mom. I’m also honored to be a member of the Babywise Friendly Blog Network.

You can read more about our family on my About Me page. Also be sure to follow along with me on Instagram, FacebookΒ and Pinterest!

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