At the beginning of 2014, I made a list of goals. I thought I would review the list and see how well I did. (Click here to see that list in full detail.)
I wanted to Blog Again-
In 2014, I blogged approx. 135 times. In 2013, the year before that, I blogged only eight times, so I think I did alright with that goal.
I wanted to Complete another professional, fitness certification-
I earned a Bodypump certification in June and I also earned a Bodycombat certification in December.
I wanted to Improve on my housework-
I do Fly Lady's Daily Flight Plan every day, so my house stays basically clean and organized, but my goal in 2014 was to follow Fly Lady's detailed cleaning lists. I would clean as I found it necessary, but my goal was to be more proactive and I did not manage to add this extra housework to my routine everyday. I plan to try again in 2015.
I wanted to Save Money of Groceries-
I started shopping at regular grocery stores like Aldi and Stop and Shop again in 2014 to save money on groceries. I saved approx. $3,000 on groceries last year,compared to the year before when we were only shopping at speciality grocers like Whole Foods, so I met my goal. We still spend a lot of money on healthy groceries, but we are saving a lot of money by shopping at less expensive stores as often as possible for the products we can get there.
I wanted to read The One Year Bible-
I did well with this goal. I read almost every single morning and whenever I skipped days and I got behind, I would read and catch up quickly. I just finished The One Year Bible this morning.
I wanted to complete P90X-
I did not meet this goal. I did three weeks of the P90X calendar in addition to teaching all my fitness classes. But all that exercise caused an overuse injury to my right shoulder. I learned a valuable lesson from this injury in 2014. I have to find ways to balance my personal workouts with my group fitness classes so that I don't overdo it.
I wanted to read-
The History of the Medieval World by Susan Wise Bauer
I got through half of this book before giving up. Speaking frankly, I thought it was boring. Maybe I will try again later when I am freakishly smart and I can find mundane details about the waring tribes in China during the Middle Ages relevant and interesting, but right now, I'm just a regular smart person, so I quit.
C.S. Lewis' entire bibliography
I did really well with this goal. I would list all the titles I read below, but that seems tedious, not to mention pretentious. Suffice it to say that I have read almost all of his well-known works, making 2014 the most fertile year of my intellectual life, without a doubt.
The Lord of the Rings trilogy
I am in the process reading the last portion of the final book, The Return of the King, now.
The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People-
I started this book, but I never finished. Considering the title, maybe I would have been more successful with some of my other goals if I had finished it.
I wanted to Call and talk to my parents and in-laws once a week.
I didn't call once a week, but I think I called more often than the year before. Next year, I may actually try and make a note on the calendar on the days I call, so I can track it. That sounds cold and calculated, but a self-centered person like me has to do what she must to make sure she is connecting with, loving, and honoring the people in her life who most deserve it.
I wanted to read and apply Laying Down the Rails-
I read it and I chose to begin by trying to teach my children the habit of "neatness." But I look around me and find that we are still working on that habit, so I haven't moved to another habit. I may read the book again,because I suspect I am doing something wrong.
I wanted to Learn the names of people who attend my fitness classes-
Given time restraints, I can only talk to people for a few moments before and after classes, so I find it very difficult to connect with people. But I am always making a very conscious effort to learn people's names and find out things about them, so I can get to know them.
I wanted to Send cards, letters, etc.
I sent a birthday and/or anniversary card to everyone in my family this year. Sometimes the cards or gifts were late, but I think this is the first year that I sent something to everyone for every occasion, so that is a real improvement. I am also corresponding with a friend in prison and I have tried to send emails and notes as often as I think about someone. In the past, I have been self-conscious about sending encouraging notes, but since I always appreciate receiving them, I trust people don't mind getting them, either.
Pray for opportunities to be a mentor to younger women and be mentored by older women.
Dwayne and I started teaching a youth Bible study at our house in 2014. Interestingly, that was not something we were even planning to do at the time I made it a goal to be a mentor to young women, but now I look back and I can see that it is something that God was in the process of working out ahead of time. There are a few young ladies in the group of teens who come to our house for Bible study and I really enjoy my growing friendships with them so much.
I have also grown in friendship with at least three older women in 2014. Looking back, I realize that I spent significant time with one or more of them on or around every major holiday or event in 2014. We are becoming like family in many ways. Many of those occasions were not planned by me, either, I was simply responding to their invitations, so God is very faithful to answer even the most simple prayers.