Goal Setting: Thoughts on 2017

If there is one goal that I have for 2017 – one little word even – it’s FOCUS. The hardest thing for me to do when I am at home working and homeschooling is staying focused on something…anything! I feel like I drifted through 2016 for lots of reasons. Some of them because I was just avoiding some things emotionally and others because I just had too many distractions.

I have a tendency to become too goal oriented and list makey and then get so overwhelmed by the lists that I just chuck it all. So this year in an effort to try and manage this I am setting goals monthly and ordering my days differently. Such as, I’m going to have laundry days. I know that Mondays Mal and I hate going anywhere and Wednesdays are my low energy days so these are the days we are most likely to be home all day. So those will be the days I get through the laundry piles and make bread etc. Fridays my husband gets off early so I want those to be my grocery store and general “getting out of the house alone” times. Alone being the key word here.

I want to create space in my mornings to write so I’m hoping to get to bed earlier and get up earlier so I have more time to do that. There are other things I’m processing through in order to reduce my distractions online in order to help me write more – but I’m still processing through those. I know that I want to post here more often and so I’m hoping to have at least one day a week where I devote to posting.

I’m still wrestling with my hopes and goals for Etsy and daisyeyes handmade this year. For the time being I’m working on updating all my pdf patterns and I am continuing to take a break from custom orders. If I had one major goal for daisyeyes this year it would be to start offering embroidery kits again and learning how to screen print. I’m crossing my fingers this one becomes a reality. I’d love to do a video component to my website – offering instruction for adults and kids, but I’m not sure how that might play out.

Garment sewing and working through the Wardrobe Architect project is another huge aspiration. I got the Colette Sewing Planner for Christmas so I’m working through that and I’m loving it.

Here’s my top 6 items I want to sew this winter:

 

I’ve got hopes for my kiddos to get them helping out more around the house and I’m hoping we can establish a little more rhythm to those things and just our family in general.  All of us thrive on routine and when the routine gets out of wack we all get out of wack so realizing that I’m hopeful we can remedy that a little bit.

And if you need a good kick in the pants reminder that doing anything takes effort and hard work – this is a great read.

This light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal. (2 Corinthians 4:17–18)

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Reading: My 2017 Book List

I’ve never been one to make a formal book list. I have my lists of “want to reads” in Goodreads and on Amazon, but I’ve never decided ahead of time what I hope to read. One major goal I have for this coming new year is to work on my own learning and personal advancement with goals. I feel like I just keep moving from one thing to the next and never really working ahead. I miss the years of college so much because everything was already laid out for you. I think this is why sometimes I miss working out in the actual workplace versus at home and for myself. I spend so much time planning the reading and learning for my daughter that I felt it was high time I started doing the same for myself. I’m also hoping to be better at writing reviews of what I’ve read too.

2017 Master Book List


FICTION

Most of these came from the podcast What Should I Read Next which is a total blast to listen to and honestly has become my go-to when it comes to finding good books.

The Nightengale by K. Hannah
The Kitchen House by K. Grissom
The Mill on the Floss by G. Eliot
One in a Million Boy by M. Wood
Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper by P. Patrick
Atonement by I. McEwan
The Optimist’s Daughter by E. Welty
Olive Kitteridge by E. Strout
Breathing Lessons by A. Tyler
Shiloh by H. Sorensen
The Little White Horse by E. Goudge
Emma by J. Austen**


NON FICTION

Hillbilly Elegy by JD Vance
First Women: The Grace and Power of America’s Modern First Ladies by KA Brower
The Seamstress by ST Bernstein
The Ghost Map: The Story of London’s Most Terrifying Epidemic–and How It Changed Science, Cities, and the Modern World by S. Johnson
The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom
The Fellowship: The Literary Lives of the Inklings: J.R.R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, Owen Barfield, Charles Williams by Zaleski


PERSONAL GROWTH

The Fringe Hours by
On the Shoulders of Hobbits
The Year of Yes by S. Rhimes
Upstream by M. Oliver
Present Over Perfect by S. Niequist
You Learn by Living by E. Roosevelt
Pleasures of Reading in an Age of Distraction by A. Jacobs
Wired to Create by
Curated Closet by
Everybody Writes by
The Core by L. Bortins
On Being a Writer by A. Kroeker


SPIRITUAL GROWTH

Humble Roots by H. Anderson
Love Walked Among Us by P. Miller
Love Henry, Letters on the Spiritual Life by H. Nouwen
Walking on Water by M. L’Engle
Good and Angry by D. Powlison
Finding God in the Ruins by M. Bays
A Grief Observed by CS Lewis
Prone to Wander by B. Duguild
Echoes of Eden by J. Barrs


**already started

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Organizing: Calendar time

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Once a year I start getting all intense about a deciding on a new calendar. A couple of years ago I stumbled upon a Moleskin calendar that I really loved. It was lightweight, just the right size and thickness – but the downside was that it was only monthly. There were notes pages set between each month, but as my life got busier and busier just having one little box to write in wasn’t cutting it. So last year I decided to try out a Plum Paper calendar. I really loved it at first, but as the year went on I really missed my lightweight Moleskin. The Plum Paper was just too bulky and it had too much going on in it. I realized that if i was going to have to go back to a Moleskin, I was going to have to come up with some sort of daily or weekly calendar to add to it.

I searched everywhere I could think of for some sort of weekly paper pad and couldn’t find one that I liked. While searching, I stumbled upon this tutorial for how to make your own notepad and my calendar issues were solved!

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I purchased this weekly calendar template from Easy Peasy Paper and had it printed at a local copy shop. I went ahead and printed 52 for all the weeks, but decided to only use about half the stack at a time for my planner pad.

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I pretty much followed the directions from the tutorial to a tee and so far it’s turned out perfect.

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I probably did more layers of glue than necessary and like she mentions in the tutorial, you definitely need to splurge and use the e6000. I found these little clamps at Home Depot for 99 cents each and I used a couple of sheets of cardboard to hold the pages in place. The whole project took a day or so – and most of that was just waiting for the glue to dry.

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I love how it turned out and it solved my calendar crisis by giving me back my Moleskin that I love.

 

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Organizing: Calendars

This Fall is going to be full of some big changes in our house. The boy is headed to 6th grade (middle school here we come) and the chick is staying home and doing 3rd grade with me. That’s right. We have entered the wild world of homeschooling. Because I’m going to have to balance my work time at home with school time with her, I had to come up with a better system for planning.

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 Enter the doctored up planner. I have a planner from Plum Paper which I do really like. I can’t say I’m 100 percent sure I’ll reorder another one from them for 2016 (I’ve kind of got my eyes on this one), but if I do I know some of the changes I’ll make (such as ordering a family style layout instead of breaking the day into morning-afternoon-evening). I knew I didn’t want another planner or anything else to carry around with me for school planning. I really wanted it to fit into this book too. But the spiral rings were throwing me for a loop with trying to figure out something to fit in there. I did a bunch of searching online for how to attach page protectors and discovered these little gems.

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They are called sticke clips and I found them on etsy. I actually had these smaller sized photo pages from another project (score!) so once my clips came I was ready to go.

my insert pages for planner

My planner is set up with one month page at the beginning of the section and then a group of weekly pages. Into each week, I will stick that weeks homeschool plan. I drafted up this planning page (which I’m sure I’ll have to adapt more once I’m actually using it) and I have one printed for the next week slipped in on the other side. Untitled

I also made this little bookmark with my goals for the week. I know I could write these on the side (and I might do that) but for some reason having this little extra bookmark in there makes me more likely to actually focus on those things (I’m beginning to understand where my child gets her ADD from). I actually made this by just cutting on of those photo pages off. The bookmark just slides in there and I haven’t had any issue with it falling out yet.

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One other thing I need to work on in the next year is blogging. Come August I have an awesome blogging related announcement, but I also wanted to get back into a better rhythm of just writing and posting in general. I found this gem of a planner here and I shrunk it down to fit into one of my photo pages and I’m planning on keeping it at the beginning of each month’s section.

Here’s a copy of my weekly planning page if you are interested.

HSweeklycalendar

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school’s out for the summer…almost

Now that I have the roaring head banging song in your head, I present to you our summer plans. I do a great job of making it look like I have it all together and this summer is no different. This is the last week of school and so I’m hurriedly trying to paste all my last minute ideas together so that next Tuesday (because Monday is a holiday) we are ready and going.

One thing we will do this week is have a “yes” day. I implemented this day as the first and last day of any vacation that we have. It’s a no holds bar kind of day where you can cram your head with as much technology and anything else (within reason) because after that we are on a schedule.

Last year we had this crazy magnet thing that I had come up with. While we kind of held it together in the beginning,  it pretty much all fell apart after a few weeks. It was a little bit too lax and the follow through wasn’t happening.

After spending Christmas vacation with one child who seriously needs some sort of schedule and me realizing that I am going to have to still work on the shop this summer, I knew we would have to have some sort of framework.

summer 2013

So this is what I came up with. A loose schedule filled with assigned days for things and different themed hours in our house. One thing I know that could easily overtake us is technology, so we are going to be very rigorous on this one. Both of my kids are getting to the age where if they are bored they want a screen. Not gonna happen this summer. We also have this Apologia science book that we’ve been talking about doing for at least 2 years and I swear we are going to do some of it this summer. So this is the lay of the land.

1. We have a family calendar hanging up that we will mark off the days as we go. This gives everyone a heads up for what is coming up that is planned for.
2. We have assigned days for things: Monday mornings we will have a chore time. They will be assigned one weekly chore that they will do on Monday mornings. Wednesdays is movie afternoon. Hopefully this helps with the “I want to watch a movie” whines. Friday mornings we will hit the library.
3. We will be unplugged between 8:30 and 1:00. No questions asked. I’m also trying to get rid of the t.v. as soon as you wake up habit. If they do wake up before 8:30, then PBS is totally fine, but if you wake up later than that….too bad.
4. We will have a loose structure to our day: breakfast, school time, work time for me with play time for them, lunch and then the tech hour. During this hour they are free to have whatever screen they desire: Ipod, Ipad, computer, Leapster, Wii…whatever. And then quiet hour. My hope is to have 30 minutes of reading time for all of us and then 30 minutes of quiet time in their rooms. This is more for my sanity than theirs! Then we will hit the pool 🙂
5. Obviously there are days where this won’t happen and to be honest we only have 4 weeks this summer that are totally open (we go to school year round so we have a pretty short summer). But these weeks we are “down” I hope will be pretty routine.

summer 2013

The second thing I did was our bucket list. I have a bunch of things I’ve pinned on my Summer2013 board and many of these ideas came from there. The idea for the mock chemistry board came from here.

summer 2013

I did ours a little differently and color coded the post it notes for free activities (pink), those that involve money (yellow), those that involve planning (blue) and a couple of open spots (green).

I have a tendency to be too structured and then never follow through, so I tried really hard to make this whole thing be a system of guidelines for us. Giving us all space for summer life to happen, but also a little roadmap for those of us that crave that sort of thing.

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