Sunday, December 6, 2015

December Goals and Happenings

 Oh wow, it's been a long time since I've loved a blog design this month. It's partly, I think, the fact that this minty green is my FAVORITE color but I never really thought of it as a Christmas color. I do think it looks so cute with red and that the background itself is so fun and whimsical. The quote is a line from "O Holy Night" and last year one of our priests in New York mentioned this verse in regards to a lot of violence going on at that time. In a way, it's sort of sad, but it couldn't be more fitting again this year. The reality of a fallen world, though, is that it will be fitting every year. I do long for the day when chains are broken and all oppression ceases and I won't stop trying to do my part to help that happen. The picture line up is one of my favorites in a while, too- lots of children's literature, including the Storybook Bible, a favorite dress of Annie's and suspenders on Graves, and I *love* that their tiny sibling made it in the header this month! Now if only I could get my house decorated for Christmas!

November seemed very daunting to me and truth is, it was sort of rough. But there were lots of fun things involved. I really enjoyed subbing and I knocked out my Mistletoe shift. Peyton and I went to the Friday night party at Mistletoe. Annie attended her first birthday party for someone that wasn't the child of a friend of ours and she joined a little book club for homeschool kids (squee) and we went to a game day at Cups with the homeschool group we're in. We wrapped up English for the semester, both kids had their end of the season soccer parties, and we did start getting stuff down from the attic and trying to purge.

December seems a lot more low key, but we have some fun stuff going on:
- Peyton and I are taking a little trip (just a day trip) to pick up something in Ponotoc that I've been searching for for the longest time.
- I have a little MDO ornament swap (so sweet that they invited subs, too!).
- All our kids are finally well-ish and things seemed to have slowed down a bit, so I'm hoping Carrie and I and the kids will get a couple of play dates in.
- I'm also hoping to get together with my sister in law and get the cousins together.
- We ovbiously need to finish the attic and decorate STAT.
- I had a little Christmas party thing to help with this week as part of my Junior League placement and then I have a meeting next week.
- I also already had this month's OB appointment.
- And then Christmas with family. Cookie and Conrad are going to be in town for longer than usual and I'm over the moon about that.

Here were November's goals (which I tried to keep decidedly low key):

1. Read She Reads Truth daily. That turned out to be a really good, attainable goal. It's in my Reader, but I don't always get to it. But I made it a priority and I mostly did it and it was a really good thing. I especially enjoyed the hymn study. (Faith)

2. Go on a date with Peyton. We actually did this twice. One of the Friday night party at Mistletoe and then one day when his parents were keeping the kids while we went to a meeting, we split a pizza at Newks. (Family)

3. Write one handwritten note and continue emailing with friends if I'm not able to see them face to face. Well, I have mostly stayed on top of the emailing (although, I'm starting to actually see people again, praise the Lord!) but (again) the handwritten note just didn't happen. Such a small thing and I really sort of want to beat myself up over it, but sometimes things get in the way. (Relationships)

4. Daily (and with intention) practice some form of self-care. I didn't do that as well as I would have liked. I was pretty gracious with myself and did things to make my life easier, but I wish I had been more cognizant of it. (Health)

5. Order a few curriculum items I need for next semester for homeschooling. I actually just received my order. It took longer than expected to figure out what we needed, but that's actually always a fun part of the process for me. (Education/Edification)

6. Determine how I will spend money on the house over the next few months and carefully make purchases. I'll post more about this at some point, but I keep a running wishlist of things and I had some substitute money saved up from the past several months. So, during the after Thanksgiving sales, I bought a few things for the house and for myself. I have a few things that haven't been delivered yet and there is one big house thing that I'm still waiting on and then I'll probably press pause on spending again for awhile.  (Finances)

7. At least begin on the attic purge. Well, we did *begin*. I wish I could say it was complete, and we have knocked out a lot but the house is in such a state and it still feels overwhelming. (Simplicity)

8. Document my Thankfuls for the month. I did this and it was, as always, very beneficial.  (Joy/Gratitude)

9. Finish at least one of the three books I'm reading. Nope. And I know that's ridiculous. It was a busy month and I hardly did any reading.  (Additional Goal)

10. Complete several things I need to tend to online (fill out a questionnaire form the OB, print a booster seat return slip, and I need to update my credit card info on our Google storage account). I did all this and it felt good to check them off the list. (Additional Goal)

11. Set aside a couple of times every week to watch The West Wing. Sadly, nope. I hardly watched any. I didn't watch much TV period and when I did it was SVU, mostly. (Fun Goal)

And here are December's goals (I really want Advent to be a joyful, simple time so I'm purposefully not setting the bar too high again):

1. Participate from afar in the daily morning prayer that is happening every morning during Advent at Calvary. It's a short prayer service taken from the BCP and one of the priests, Ben, was kind enough to extend the invitation to those for whom transit would be hard/impossible and is emailing a daily document. (Faith)

2. Read to the children nightly from The Jesus Storybook Bible and help them prepare their hearts to celebrate Christ's coming. (Family)

3. Relax and enjoy spending time with family over the holidays. (Family)

4. Try to get back in the habit of cooking regularly. I'm not even going to set a firm goal for this, but basically anything would be an improvement. (Health)

5. Get to the semester end point I had established in math with Annie before January. (Education/Edification)

6. Finish buying our family gifts for Christmas. I only have one or two left. (Finances)

7. Finish the big attic purge. (Simplicity)

8. Be very intentional about showing genuine appreciation to people working in retail/restaurants/ect. I know this is a HARD time of year and I want them to know they are appreciated. (Joy/Gratitude)

9. Decorate for Christmas. (Obviously.) So lame it hasn't been done, but we're always late to the party and we do leave up everything for the full twelve days. It'll happen early this coming week, hopefully. (Additional Goal)

10. Watch the Advent series at The Work of the People. (Additional Goal)

11. Drive around and look at lights. (Fun Goal)

12. Make good use of my Christmas playlist (Fun Goal)

13. Watch When Harry Met Sally on the 31st. It's a New Year's Eve tradition, but I don't always make it happen! (Fun Goal)

Here's to December, a month where we make read our hearts to celebrate the birth of the King of Kings. May we slow our pace enough to prepare again to remember his coming.

No comments: