Thursday, July 19, 2018

Mid-Year Goal Check-In

So you know how I set goals at the beginning of every year (like pretty much every other person on the planet?). Well, in the name of accountability I also generally like to do a mid-year check in, just to refresh and see how I'm doing.

So, here are my goals, and here is my progress:

1. Read 75 Books

This one was a stretch goal for me, as I've never read that many books in a single calendar year (usually I go for 52, a book a week), but as of the end of June (so, the mid-way point in the year), I've read 47 books!!! Which is crazy good! And also means that for the rest of the year, I only need to read 28 books, which I think is going to be a walk in the park. (Maybe, my commute audio book time might suffer a little bit due to the fact I'll be travelling with kids this semester, more on that later). Anyway, I'm doing awesome on this goal, and it makes me super happy.

2. Establish Early Morning Routine

Okay, so far, this goal is coming along great! I've had much more consistent success this year with waking up between 5:30 and 6 AM every week day (I let myself sleep in on the weekends), and usually get in some scripture study/meditation, a little exercise (usually yoga, but this summer I've started going out for a run a couple times a week, which if you know me, is one of the most shocking developments and my husband is even like, who are you anymore?!?!), and getting showered and dressed before the kids wake up. I've had a few setbacks (like every time I get sick, or that time in June when jet lag and a series of colds knocked me out for a few weeks), but the fact that I've been able to eventually get back to early mornings, even here in the summer, has been awesome! It makes me feel so great about life, like I am in control and killing it! This is a good thing, because the way my schedule is working out for this next semester, early mornings will no longer be a choice, but a necessity. Now, if only I could get that 10 PM bedtime down pat too, so I wasn't so tired all the time...

3. Attend a Conference/Submit a Paper for Publication

Checked this one off in March when I presented a paper at conference in Ann Arbor! And then, I had another paper accepted for a conference in November, so I'm double killing this goal! Woo-hoo!

4. More One-on-One Time With My Kids

This one is proving more difficult to work out than I planned. I was aiming for solo activities with each kid while the others entertained themselves, but my kids are at an age where if I sit down to do anything with one child, the others are drawn like moths to a flame, so it inevitably turns into a group activity. And the one-on-one date things aren't happening so much because, as I discovered early on, my kids are weird and home-bodies and never really want to leave the house unless I force them to (we have to get groceries if you want to eat food for lunch!). So when I suggested things like, "Hey, do you want to come with Mommy on a special trip to get a treat?" I actually got a flat refusal. My kids are quirky. Whatever. It's cool. I know exactly where they get their home-body tendencies from (hint: not my husband). Also, it's probably just a phase (right?).

Anyway, what I've decided to do is switch the focus of this goal. The original motivation was all about making sure my kids get the quality time and attention they need from me while my life is so hectic and busy with school. So instead of focusing on one-on-one activities with each of them, I'm just going to focus on making sure whatever time I do spend with them is high quality. I'm working on being calm (never yelling, etc.). I'm working on being a listener. I'm working on empathy. I'm working on being a safe place. I'm working on paying attention more to what they are trying to tell me. I'm working on making sure the time I do spend with them is not too rushed. For me, this looks like stopping in the middle of the dishes to sit down on the floor to read with my baby (she is always begging for me to read to her, and how can I refuse?). Or by stopping in the middle of trying to make my bed to cuddle with my middle child because he's clearly in need of cuddles. Or by stopping while in the middle of reading my book to listen to my oldest talk to me about his never-ending litany of Star Wars trivia that he feels so compelled to share at every hour of the day. I am calm. I am listening. I am present. So far, I think this summer has been going pretty well. We'll see how I do once the semester starts again and life feels rushed again.

5. Go to the Temple Every Other Month

I'm embarrassed to admit so far this has been a big fat fail. Ugh. Every other month should mean I've gone at least three times at this point, and I've been once this whole year. Childcare is still the biggest issue, although the one time I did go it was alone, leaving my husband home with the kids. But even that is difficult, as he's not always able to get home early enough for me to leave in time to make the last session on week days, and Saturdays always get so busy with other life things. But I know these are just excuses. I really need to just make it a priority.

Okay. So there's my update. Some of these goals I'm killing, others I'm managing at least the intention, only one I'm completely failing at (but will do better!).

I also listed some honorable mention goals in that post, which I wasn't going to make official, but I did just want to mention here that we managed to plant a garden! And we had some amazing zucchini plants with tons of flowers and even harvested two beautiful zucchini! ... but then the rabbits came and ate the roots, and now all my zucchini plants are dead (I guess this explains why all our neighbors have nice big fences around their garden boxes...). And we planted some tomato plants but so far, only three are still alive and I'm not sure they're ever going to grow enough to produce fruit. But I did get a nice sunflower to bloom (I'll snap a picture some time!). So, that's how that's going. Clearly I need to do some work to develop my green thumb.

How are you doing on your goals so far?


  1. You really are killing it on your reading goal! That's incredible! And I totally am hardcore missing my morning routine now that I know how amazing they are. But having a newborn with a super unpredictable sleep schedule (and who has taken to waking up every two hours in the night again this week...yikes) has made it pretty impossible to pick up again. But kudos to you for keeping up with such an early wake time in the summer! I'm sure it's so worth it though.

    1. Ugh, new babies kill routine of any kind. Especially this third one of mine. She is my worst night sleeper by far, which is why it's taken me this long (she's 18 months now) to feel like I'm back in the morning routine saddle. Just get whatever sleep you can and give your babe time to get your routines back. It will come!