Tuesday, May 16, 2017

May Goals and Happenings

I love this month's design. It feels a bit juvenile, but so be it. May is mine and Peyton's birthday month and we're having the big kids' party so the cupcakes felt appropriate. I love the color scheme and the checked design. My favorite picture this time, I think is the middle one of all three kids probably followed by Annie doing schoolwork in the yard. I love the quote and think they're so much truth to it. I hope that I'm showing that lovely light in my life.

Well, I don't think I've ever been this behind on one of these. I mean, the month is half over! It's just taking me some time to really get back in a routine after New York. I worked so hard to stay pretty caught up on my blog, so it's kind of stressed me out, but I think I'm settling back in and getting back on track with that and other stuff.

So...this is obvious from any reading you happened to have done here, but April was super fun...and super hard.
- MBird didn't exactly turn out as planned since Peyton didn't get to go and making it to church was more difficult than I expected, but every time I was there I felt tremendously blessed and thankful. It was so good to be back.
- We made it several times to the Museum of Natural History, once to the Bronx Zoo, once to the Children's Museum, to Central Park a couple of times and to Prospect Park once, to Coney Island, and to lots of our old favorite restaurants and to tons of playgrounds.
- We saw a good many of our friends and that was really wonderful and fun.

As I said, May is halfway over. But...
- We celebrated P's birthday in New York and mine is today along with Mother's Day. We went over to my parents' and had the best time. I'd love to sneak in a date with Peyton at some point before the month is over.
- Next Friday is the big kids' birthday party and we're going to be getting the house/yard in shape for that.
- We're also working on helping get Briarwood looking nice next week. It opens at the end of the month and swim teams starts!
- And I'm hoping we'll get down to the farm sometime in the next couple of weeks.

Here were my goals for April. I wanted it to be a very low key month so we could just enjoy our time in New York. My prayer at the end was that I'd be positive and patient and energetic and unafraid. I certainly failed in all those areas at points, but I do think God gave me joy and patience and energy and courage in a time when all those were hard to muster.

1. Attend MBird and Sunday services (plus hopefully a couple of extra during Holy Week) at Calvary-St. George's. As I said, none of this went exactly as I pictured, but it was everything I needed and more. (Faith)

2. Try to stay patient and joyful in my interactions with the children (and Peyton) during this month where we are a bit out of our element. Again, I think I did mostly (supernaturally) well with this. Of course, there were times I slipped, but overall I think I was pretty patient.  (Family)

3. Schedule and spend time with friends in New York. Yes! We saw friends from both churches we attended, our friends from Long Island came to Brooklyn to visit with us, another friend dropped by our Airbnb on the way to catch a flight, I caught up with a high school friend who lives in BK that I haven't seen in a decade, and we met up with Annie and Graves's swim team coach from last summer who is just a really neat, special person.  (Relationships)

4. Care for myself mentally and emotionally (e.g.- email friends at home, go out for breaks by myself, ect). I think I did pretty well with this. A lot of this was just doing a lot of reflecting on the trip in real time. I think that was super helpful to me. (Health)

5. Prioritize writing and reading. Eh. Yes on the writing, sorta on the reading. (Creativity/Passion)

6. Don't lose momentum with homeschooling but also don't allow it to be a source of stress. I think we did as well as we could here. It was hard to find that balance, though. In the future, if we take a trip like this, I do think we'll keep schooling (it's so hard when Annie gets off her routine and Graves would forget like ninety percent of what he's learned if he took a month off) but I'd like to streamline it ALOT so we wouldn't be taking as much or trying to accomplish as many different things. (Education/Edification)

7. Work on relabeling some blog posts. Well, no. I actually didn't look over the list like I do most months and totally forgot about this one. (Organization)

8. Relax and enjoy our days in NYC!!!! YES (as much as was possible). (Travel)

9. Get caught up on finances. Maybe never? Teasing, but no. Didn't do it. Not one bit. (Finances)

10. Immerse myself in a city that changed my life. Yep. So very special.  (Joy/Gratitude/Perspective)

11. Go out to eat/get take out from our favorites in NYC and maybe find a couple of new ones. We hit our faves and that was super fun! (Fun Goal)
And here are my May goals:

1. Read both my devotions daily. I do this for awhile and then get out of the habit. I got out of the habit in New York. This is a good one for this month. Since I only have half the month and it's sort of a habit already, it's a good fit because it's more just about becoming disciplined again than truly forming a new habit. Another reason I have varying success with this (and a lot of things) is because our lives seems to change so often and our routine does with them. The seasons with babies and small children are short (I don't mean the years; I mean the actual stages where you get in a routine with one thing and "find your normal" and then it abruptly changes the next day). Anyway, all that to say, I need to figure out what time of day works best for this right now. (Faith)

2. Prioritize my time with Cookie while she's in town. For whatever reason, I've really been missing my sister and wishing she was closer. She'll be in town this coming weekend (mainly for the big kids' birthday party) and I just want to soak up the time with her. (Family)

3. Enjoy the sweet friendships we've been blessed with at the kids' party this week. The way we've always done their parties is to invite our families and the families we are close to, which ends up being a lot of their friends (who are their friends because their parents are our friends) and their families. Anyway, it's just a really fun time for me and Peyton, too, and I want to try to not let stress overtake me and just enjoy it. I did pretty well with it last year but I didn't have three kids and I was probably more organized with it. We do super low key parties, so there's really no reason to get worked up. (Relationships)

4. Be intentional about self-care and document it. I'm actually planning to report to a friend each night. Can't wait to update on how this goes. (Health)

5. Get back in a writing habit. As I mentioned, I worked really hard to get back on the blogging train and these last few weeks I really let it go. It's a hobby I enjoy but it's also a discipline and I want to carve out time for it. (Creativity/Passion)

6. Read for fifteen minutes a day at a minimum. This is another one that's good for this month because it's a daily thing rather than some big project that I only have half a month to tackle. It wouldn't matter if I had three days or thirty with this one. (Education/Edification)

7. Continue to work on organizing the attic. I've actually already gotten a lot done this month, but I want to make a bit more progress. (Organization)

8. Make a trip to the farm. I'm not sure this will happen, but I'm hopeful. (Travel)

9. Get caught up on finances. Again. (Finances)

10. Surround myself with words that bring joy. I need to change up my monthly quote in the kitchen and I want to redo the one on the chalkboard in there. (Joy/Gratitude/Perspective)

11. Start Annie's new writing curriculum. I'm super excited about this one and she is too. (Additional Goal)

12. Plan my "special day". We do a special day for each of the big kids' birthdays and this year Peyton had one, too. It's nothing big, just going to your favorite restaurants and that kind of thing. I'm thinking it will include a date with P, a day off school, a family walk, and I'm not sure what else. Maybe CFA for lunch so the big kids can play and we can get two uninterrupted conversations in? (Fun Goal)

13. Watch the new season of Master of None with Peyton. We actually started it last night! (Fun Goal)

Here's to May, a month to celebrate life and family and motherhood. Let me think on the small things I have to be grateful for, let me take joy in the monotonous tasks, and remember that neither my vocational failures nor successes define me.

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