Now that March is underway it is time to think about my 2014 goals! It only took 2 1/2 months. This year I’m focusing on simplifying life and getting back to the basics. I want to make room and time for people and relationships.
One thing that stood out as I was making my goals was that I didn’t even really think about food or diet in terms of my own health. That is a big sign of healing. I don’t have a special diet. I eat nutrient-rich food. I eat what my body likes/what makes me feel good. I eat enough to support my body and my baby. It’s nice to not have a laundry list of diet do’s and don’ts as part of my goals this year.
1. Get back to the basics with nutrition.
I first learned about real food about four years ago. I took the time to really understand what nutrition meant and how to feed my family. Over the years with my own health struggles, dietary restrictions for my kids (for allergies) and times of doing what you can just to get by (during things like miscarriage and early pregnancy) I have lost sight of that a little bit.
Sometimes I’m even amazed when I look back through my old posts. I posted a lot of good information! So it’s time to get back to the basics of nutrition. I never strayed too far. But I know I can do better with getting some of the junk out of our house. As I get my energy back I also hope to get my passion and drive back for making real, homemade food that is nourishing for my family.
This will include simple steps like adding egg yolks, coconut oil, gelatin and bone broth to foods whenever I can. I may also re-post some old articles to help myself get back on track.
I’m not going to be extreme. I know there has to be balance. I also know I’m human and can only do so much. But I’m also ready to put in the effort to make sure my family is nourished.
As part of this I may start re-reading Nourishing Traditions. It has such a wealth of knowledge.
Once I am feeling better I will also do a one week challenge with my kids to see how they do with absolutely no packaged food. They don’t eat much as it is. But over the last few months we’ve had to go with convenience sometimes because it was all I could manage. We need to break the habit and get back to real food.
This is not about restriction. This is not about a special diet. This does not mean we can’t enjoy other food when we are out or with friends. This is about sticking to real, nourishing foods the majority of the time and especially at home. It’s easy to lose sight of that in our culture. I want to be sure my kids know what true health means.
2. Simplify and de-clutter my house and my life.
One of the biggest sources of stress for our whole family is the clutter and mess in the house. With me being only able to do the minimum around the house for the last three months it has gotten even worse. It’s time to finally do something about it.
When I used to think about cleaning what came to mind was organizing and making things look neat. I didn’t care about dust bunnies in the corner or mold spots on the ceiling as long as things were in order.
But now that my daughter has been diagnosed with severe dust and mold allergies, cleaning has a whole new meaning. I’m starting to notice every little spec of dirt in our house. I’m realizing just how dirty it is!
So my cleaning goal is two-fold. I want to get things organized and get rid of things we don’t use/don’t need. I also want to do a thorough cleaning of the whole house. I want my daughter and my husband to be able to breathe better and feel better at home.
The cleaning will be better for our health. The neatness will make everyone happier. It will create more peace. There will also be a place for everything…which means clean up will be much easier.
This will also free up a lot of time (especially mine!). Instead of spending half of my day just trying to stay on top of the mess, I’ll have more time for my family and for doing other things. By bed time everyone will be much happier and calmer.
3. Make relationships a priority.
I probably want this or even write it as a goal every year. It is one of my biggest struggles. I am an introvert by nature (extreme introvert and painfully shy). So making friends is very difficult. Add to that severe OCD, feelings of isolation from infertility, anxiety…you get the picture. For most of my life I’ve just gone the easy route. I avoid deep friendships. I keep everything surface level. I don’t let anyone in. I try to hide all the things I don’t like about myself. But it’t not a good way to live. It’s also not a good example for my children.
I did have some very close friends when I was younger. But life changes as you get older. I’ve also had deep friendships that have caused a lot of hurt. After that it was hard to open up to anyone again.
Over the years I have realized that having close friends is one of the biggest things missing in my life. I have a wonderful husband and a great family (both my family and my in-laws). I am thankful for a couple friends that I keep in touch with regularly via email.
But this year I want to build lasting friendships. I want to put in the effort, let others into my life and drop my guard. It will not be easy. But I think it’s worth the effort.
In addition to making friends, I wan to make sure that my relationship with my husband is a priority. This is especially critical before baby #3 arrives. Since our children are almost six and three, now is a good time to go on dates and spend time together.
I also want to make sure my kids get plenty of attention before the baby comes. I will try to continue our monthly mommy/daughter dates. I will also try to do special things for my son. Finally we will make the most of our summer and do lots of fun things, like going to the beach, playgrounds, etc.
Life will be very different in September with a new baby and my big girl in school all day. So we are going to enjoy our family of four for the summer.
4. Work on myself.
This year I want to really think about how my actions impact my children (and others around me). I want to be a good example to my kids. This includes things like facing my fears, making friends and trusting God.
My daughter already struggles with anxiety, just like I did when I was little. I need to teach her how to handle anxiety and how to let it go. I have to do this through the way I handle my own anxiety.
I will have two big adjustments later this year. I will be adjusting to life with three children. I will also be adjusting to my daughter being in school all day. I plan to prepare myself mentally for these changes.
My yearly goals would not be complete without talking about my health. Thankfully this year there isn’t too much to think about. My main focus is to keep my thyroid levels and medication well-monitored, both during and after pregnancy.
I need to focus on eating enough quality food, getting moderate exercise and getting plenty of sleep. Yes, good health really is that simple.
Finally, I want to take more time to read. I don’t do it very often these days. But I have a lot of books that have been sitting on my desk for a long time. I also have a lot of Kindle books. So I am going to read more and watch TV less. I just got a few new books last week as an early birthday present. I’ve already finished one of them!
5. Focus on my writing.
My writing has taken a back seat for the last few months. After my miscarriage I lost my focus and energy. I had to really concentrate on my health. Then when I had bad morning sickness I simply could not sit at the computer to write.
Now that I’m starting to feel better I’m finally getting my desire to write back! It feels great. Although my kids don’t like to give me time to do it.
I switched my site from Blogger to WordPress earlier this year. But being so sick I didn’t have time to do anything else with it. I want to learn more about WP and update the look of my site.
I want to write about a variety of topics. I will still post recipes. I will also be writing about health issues.
I will continue to learn about photography and work on my skills.
I am also hoping to start doing some giveaways this year!
6. Word for the year – LOVE.
Last year I started focusing on a word for the year. It was acceptance. Last year was definitely a year of acceptance. It took a while to figure out a word for this year. But it turns out I didn’t really have to figure it out. During the first two months of this year God has bombarded me with the word LOVE.
My daily email devotions started in January with “40 Days of Love.” At church we did a series called “How’s It Growing” where we talked about spiritual disciplines…the final and most important being love.
For Valentine’s Day this year my daughter made all of her cards. We found a pack of cheap bracelets for her to use for the girls in her class. They each got two. At the end there were two bracelets left that I told her she could keep for herself. Instead she kept one and gave one to me in my card. Like a good mother I put it on…and it’s been on ever since! It’s just a little, plastic red bracelet. But it reminds me daily to love.
There have been plenty of other signs of love as well.
So this year I am focusing on love. I want to give love. I want to be loved.
I have been reminded constantly this year already about how much God loves me. It’s incomprehensible. But it is so comforting. Even when I’m worried or anxious or not so happy with myself…God still loves me unconditionally.
I want to show this same love to others. I want to show my husband and my kids unconditional love.
This year I hope to work hard to make life simpler and make room for building relationships and setting a good example to my children. It all comes down to simplify and love. I’m excited to see what God has in store for us this year.