Monday, December 29, 2014

Last Monday of 2014 and 2015 Goals

Today was a perfect last Monday of the year. We slept in a little (Marshall usually lets us go until 8 or so lately) and then took our time getting going. We focused on tidying up the house, running a few errands, getting Marshall down for some solid naps, and enjoying some time to relax. Terry washed a million dishes (where do they all come from?!), I cleaned up and unpacked us, and Marshall practiced rocking on his hands and knees. That kid might crawl before the year is out...but I think it'll be another week or two.

One exciting adventure today was making fresh bread in a bread machine! We borrowed it for a bit to see if we might want one for ourselves, and our first loaf was a success! I tried this recipe from Lisa and loved it. I'm already itching to make more--cinnamon swirl (for French toast, naturally), savory breads, French bread...

Blurry--I was too excited.

Turns out that when Terry's home we just relax a lot and watch our baby explore his world. It's a new kind of wonderful.

With tea in our new mugs, a gift from Christmas.

We did this super quick yoga workout after Marshall dozed off tonight and certainly felt fatigued, especially in the arms and shoulders. Then I finished reheating dinner (leftovers from Christmas), and we sat down to a simple, delicious meal. We also each ate some freshly baked bread! Crazy how simple a bread machine makes it.

Tonight we're just taking it easy, enjoying our time together. I'm also thinking a lot lately about the fast-approaching new year. I imagine that no year will ever involve as much sudden, drastic change as 2014--there will certainly be other big years, but you only become a parent for the first time once--but I also hope that each year will continue to challenge, excite, inspire, and thrill us. I'm hesitant to set a bunch of specific goals this year--I truly feel that the priority for me at the moment is raising a healthy baby--but of course I am constantly striving to be better all around. Here's what's ahead for 2015:

Lots of cooking. I received more cookbooks this year for Christmas(!!!), and I am already digging through them to find which recipes I want to try first. It's easy to stick with the same tried-and-true recipes during the week when Terry's working late every night and I'm trying to soothe a teething baby, but most of my cookbooks provide plenty of suggestions for busy nights, and I just need to take a few minutes every weekend to choose a few for the week. Maybe another cooking class is in my future, too.

Stretching. I have found myself pleasantly surprised by my body's willingness to slowly get back into jogging, walking, strength training, yoga, and, lately, even some more intense exercises like burpees. But I also feel myself lacking the flexibility I had before I was pregnant, and I want to make stretching more of a priority. I'm aiming for 15 minutes per day.

Sleep. We have a baby who actually sleeps fairly consistently, and usually that means at least eight hours before waking. I need to get better about taking advantage of that time--not for dishes or Facebook but for sleeping myself. I think it would help me to try to get in bed at the same time each night (maybe 10 pm) and even try reading a little bit before sleep. (My friend Amanda would be so proud to hear me say that--realistically I'll probably just get in bed and then watch TV or something, but it's a start.)

Expanding Marshall's world. As Marshall grows more curious and independent, I want to provide opportunities for him to learn and interact with his world. Terry and I gave Marshall swim lessons for Christmas, so he'll start those in the new year, but I also want to start more consistent activities throughout the week, like story time at local libraries, Gymboree-type classes, and spending time with new people. It is, after all, my job right now to focus on the little guy, so I want to do that job well!

Employment. Speaking of jobs, I am starting to feel ready to dive back in to work. I know it will be a huge transition for me to get back out there, but I think it's the right choice for our family. The job hunt has started (slowly), so wish me luck!

Keep my sense of humor. I have noticed that since becoming a mom I've drifted a little away from my light-hearted self. I am sure a lot of factors--sleep deprivation, constant worry, physical discomfort--can be blamed, but I've always valued the ability to laugh at myself and the world around me, even when things get tough. I have told Terry in recent months that I don't want to lose that. So I think the best solution is to surround myself with laughter by watching all my favorite TV shows on repeat whenever Marshall is sleeping. Right?

There are a million things I'd love to keep improving about myself, so this list is by no means exhaustive. I just hope I can soak up 2015 for what it is: the year Marshall will grow from an infant to a toddler (this time next year I'll have a 19-month-old!); the year I turn 30 (yikes); the year we celebrate four years of marriage and nine years of being a couple; and so much more that we don't even know about yet! I'm so excited for what's in store. Here's to a beautiful year!

What are you most looking forward to in 2015?

Any big goals or resolutions? I could list 25 more--drink 100 ounces of water a day, walk for thirty minutes every day, read my Bible with some sort of consistency, go on a date with my husband at least once a month, stay in touch with friends more consistently...but alas, I will have to do my best.

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