I have never really been one to make a big deal about New Years Resolutions. Not to say that I haven't made them, but I have definitely never followed through on one for an entire year. Eventually I just realized it was better not to make them than to set myself up for failure. Failing to keep my resolution would stress me out and make me feel like I wasn't living up to the standard (even though I had created that standard). And really, there is only one standard I should be striving to live up to. So, rather than striving for some fabricated standard that I will fail to meet at some point this year I created a list of my hopes and desires for 2011. I know I will fall short at times and I am okay with that. Continual growth is my goal.
1. I hope to look back on 2011 and see growth in my relationship with God. Instead of making excuses as to why I cannot consistently be in the Word and spending time with the Lord I want to make it a priority. I came up with an idea a couple of mornings ago, while reading "I'm Too Human to be Like Jesus" by Poppy Smith: Instead of failing to get up before the girls to do my personal quite times I want to start incorporating it in to our morning routine. While I take 15 or 20 minutes to read and reflect I want the girls to do the same thing. Not only will it teach them the discipline of sitting quietly, but I will be modeling to them what a growing relationship with God looks like with actions and not just words; one of my biggest goals as a mother.
2. I hope to continue to reduce how often I get frustrated with the girls and increase my level of patience. My desire is to always speak to them in loving tones that do not incite fear. It is easy to resort to yelling or harsh words to get my point across an though it may initially produce the response I want, it is not creating the lifelong heart attitudes in them that I believe the Lord desires from them. I do not want to teach my kids to obey out of the fear of Mom's wrath but instead out of a love for God and a genuine desire to pursue righteousness.
3. I want to spend my day wisely. In the evenings I want to be able to reflect on my day and not think that maybe I should have spent less time on craigslist or facebook. I am so blessed to be able to spend my days with my girls and I want to make each moment count. Even though we plan on homeschooling for at least a couple of years, my time with the girls in terms of spending all day every day with them is limited and I don't want to regret how I spent it.
4. I want to learn to build stuff. I have been obsessed with the site www.ana-white.com lately and I have big dreams for the things I will build once I get a garage. So, I hope that once 2011 comes to an end I have had made numerous blog entries highlighting new additions to our home built by yours truly.
5. I want to continue to learn that less is more in terms of activities we participate in and how busy our schedule is. It is so easy to justify activities that "enhance" our children's life. Ballet, Bible Study, Playdates, Mom's Groups, Awana, Sports, Swimming Lessons are all great things but it doesn't mean they are all right for me or for my children. I feel like in the past few months and especially the past couple of weeks I have been learning a lot about stepping back. For the past couple of weeks we haven't done much of anything besides stay home and do art projects (besides our trip to WA for Christmas) and I feel like it has been so valuable for all of us. It is impossible for me to consistently train the girls if we are constantly on the go. Last month I dropped out of BSF for the year, it was a really difficult decision for me. How could a Bible Study possibly be a bad thing for me? And other moms with more children and responsibilities seem to be able to handle it so why can't I? But for me and the girls it was the right decision not to continue. So, I want to continue to be okay with just being home with my kids.
6. I desire to continue to grow in my friendships. This one is truly a struggle for me. Since I was little is has been very easy for me to avoid get attached to others. I remain guarded so that if we were to move or something were to happen and a person was no longer in my life, it wouldn't be painful. This is a lonely and selfish way to live. We have been in Salem for almost two years now and I have developed friendships with some amazing women. I want to continue to learn to pour myself into those relationships selflessly and without restraint.
7. I hope to finish my AA (2 year) degree! It might be a little bit of a push to finish by next December but I am going to try. This term I am taking Sociology, Communication (online, not sure how that works), and Math (my first math class in 11 years, good thing I married a math nerd.)
8. We want to pay off the Yaris and NEVER have car payments again!
9. Pipe Dream: Lose baby #3 baby weight by Christmas 2012.
(That would require working out though and that absolutely is NOT on my vision list for 2011 because it would mean utter and definite failure.)
10. Continue to grow with Josh as husband and wife in Christ.
11. Treasure the season of life I am in!