To 2013

To say our New Year’s Eve was understated would be…well…an understatement. Never ones to make much of the dawning of a New Year (often ushered in sound asleep), we set our sights especially low this time. We spent the day en route from Ontario, returning from the hustle of Christmas vacation – driving tentatively along slushy highways, car loaded to overflowing with the excesses of Christmas.

We arrived at our destination at 10 PM, road weary and suffering through coughs and sneezes – evidence of a family-wide cold epidemic. After settling Abby in (for what would be one of the most restless nights of her young life) we visited with friends and longed for the comforts of our own beds, to be enjoyed the following night. Exhausted, we finally trudged up the stairs, tiptoeing in to the room we would share with Abby. Cautious of her light-sleeping tendencies, we turned on a cell phone to illuminate a safe path to the bed. And what do you know – 12:00. Exactly. “Happy New Year, baby” – whispered John, with a celebratory kiss. And just like that we welcomed 2013.

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This past year, I’ve noticed a recurring trend to categorize the past year based on a single word, phrase or mission statement. Alternatively, folks will look ahead to the coming 365 and lump their goals and priorities into a compact arrangement: “be intentional,” “think big,” or “reach out.” I’d love to say I have managed to compartmentalize my thoughts into such a tiny sphere but, alas, I’ve not yet managed to succinct such a response. I always was verbose…

In fact, I’ve never actually made a concrete New Year’s resolution. Something about the ideal seems too fragile – destined to fail, and I’ve never been a major fan of failure. A pessimistic notion, I suppose, but something I’ve managed to avoid all these years. So this year I’ve decided to set goals. Some trivial, some large – all fluid. I’ll feel free to add and subtract goals as I see fit throughout the year, but still benefit from a rough framework of thoughts. For posterity’s sake, I thought I would jot down a few “goals” that come to mind.

Read through the New Testament: Every year I set out to read the Bible in one year. And every year I fail. Miserably. I usually get lost in the mire of Psalms, terrified of the looming prophets. So this year I’ve started a reading plan that will see me read through the New Testament. I’m very optimistic, and three for three so far!

Be a better wife: How’s that for a broad goal? Listen more, complain less, and limit the nagging (trying to be realistic here…). I have a feeling this will be a goal to aspire to for the rest of my life. Maybe putting words to the notion will help me be more mindful in the days to come?

Be a present Mom : Ironic as it may seem, as a stay-at-home/work-from-home mom, I feel like I miss out of quality time with Abby. I’m generally struggling to meet deadlines, stay one step ahead of the perpetual mess, and deal with everything else that pulls me in five different directions. I want to spend at least 30 minutes of quality one-on-one time with no distractions every day. Just the two of us (and mealtimes and walks outside don’t count…). Reading, colouring…or, get this – just playing.

Visit New York City: Our trip to the Big Apple two years ago was fantastic, and I can’t shake the urge to do it all again. Hoping for sometime this summer.

Remember birthdays: I’ve always been a major proponent of snail mail, and would send letter upon letter to friends and family. I’ve started to fall off the bandwagon the last few years (getting cards out 75% of the time), and this year I want to get a card in the mail for every close friend and family member at their birthday!

Run a 5K: Self-explanatory. I hope to do this alongside my best friend, of course (that would be the hubby!).

Use what I have: That fancy bottle of hand lotion I’ve been saving “just because.” Use it. That nice silverware set being stored until we buy a home (while we use a mismatched set pieced together four years ago) – um, just use it already!

Purge: Get rid of the unnecessary – this includes possessions, bad habits, and anything that clutters and distracts. Pretty broad in scope, but we’ve already made good progress!

Other goals:

Tackle a nagging task every day

Read a missionary biography

Lose another 10 pounds

Create a photobook of Abby’s 2nd year

Invest in (and learn how to use) good makeup

Take time for hobbies: e.g., read more, blog, learn how to shoot in manual mode

Try a new recipe (dessert and entree) every month

Be more spontaneous – I only get one crack at 2013!

I’ve started a daily “list” journal: where I can keep track of the mundane activities, chores, and commitments. But at the back, I’ve jotted down some of these larger goals for easy reference. And, since one of my “to-do” items for today was “Blog about goals in 2013″…I’ll chalk it down as successful!