Tuesday, December 30, 2014

2014 Review

Tomorrow is the last day of 2014? Wow, huh? The year didn't actually turn out the way I expected. Not in a bad way, I just expected more changes that were never necessary.

Last year, my resolutions didn't last even a few months. Actually, I kept working on most of them, but I stopped recording my progress. I think *maybe* I took on a bit too much in the resolution department. So unlike me! *cough, cough* So instead of reviewing all those goals, I thought I would just summarize my thoughts on 2014 in the categories I used to use in my goal setting group (how I miss those get togethers!).

Financial - I don't think I really blogged about the "No Buy" year that Matt and I attempted in 2014. I won't go into all our "rules" (they were pretty loosey goosey anyway), but I do want to touch on how much we both learned and grew from the experience. I became so much more aware of how often I buy things thinking that they will bring me happiness/satisfaction/contentment. I also began to see that happening in those around me. The justification, the thinking that "just this" will complete my wardrobe/kitchen/home/etc. I also realize how mindlessly I shop and buy. Matt and I both noticed that when our attention turned from all the new things we could buy to what we already owned, we really saw how much excess we already have. I was also surprised at the extra time I had when I might have been shopping/buying. Added Bonus: We saved so much!!

Home/Garden/Possessions - I've done a really good job of cleaning out the old stuff this year. There were uncountable boxes donated, and there is still plenty of room for improvement! The outside of our house took a beating with a major hailstorm that required a new roof and a yet-to-be-done paint job. The loss of a huge tree left a huge hole (literally and figuratively) that we didn't address last summer. The inside of the house is starting to look "done" after 6 years in this house. Changes we made this year:

  • "New" dining room decor mostly finished with rearranged furniture and sconces/artwork hung
  • "New" family room (old dining room) painted plus new bookshelves/rug/media stand/artwork hung
  • Breakfast nook/kitchen sitting area rearranged - so much better!
  • Homeschool room rearranged for more independent work
  • Kate's room painted and totally redecorated

Community/Career/Creativity - I can't say that I've done so well in 2014 in this area of life. Very little official volunteering, no work on my career (although I am starting to ponder my next steps), and after a strong start finishing a few quilts at the beginning of the year, I've barely made it into my sewing room since last summer.

Health/Nutrition/Fitness - while my athletic practices always wax and wane with the seasons and there is always room for improvement, I feel like my active life went well in 2014. Tennis is going well and I play up and officially moved to 3.5 in 2014. I discovered Pilates and am now a devoted practitioner plus I do a bit of strength training to supplement. I've had better running years, but I've stayed somewhat steady with at least getting out a few times a week. As always, I wish I did more yoga and general stretching. I had a few medical issues at the end of summer (the kind that are apparently not so unusual for a woman in her 40's). Because of that, I started a vitamin regime that seemed to help, but I fell off the bandwagon when we travelled in October and haven't started back again. I also fell way behind on other necessary medical appointments in 2014 - blah. And healthy eating wasn't as consistent as I would have liked.

Family/Friends - my relationships with the kids feels good, although I have struggled internally with some parenting thoughts/ideas this last year. Don't we all struggle with that, but it was more than normal for me. Saw my extended family multiple times in 2014 and really appreciated seeing the distant family that we don't see much - aunts/uncles/cousins/2nd cousins/etc. Feeling pretty good about my friends. I'm lucky to have such good ones in my life. I got to at least see many of my out of town friends and even spent extended time with several. As I think happens in this stage of life, sometimes it feels like there isn't enough time to devote to friends. Plus we got Tripper. He belongs in family, right?

Spiritual/Personal Growth - I took a class called "How To Read An Aura" which was fascinating. Did some meditation here and there. Not much the last few months. I've enjoyed some great reads this year but was never purposeful with what I read.

Travel - this category wasn't in the originals from goal group, but I added it because it is important to me. I think it was a pretty successful travel year! We hit at least 6 national sites - White Sands, Carlsbad Caverns, Grand Tetons, Yellowstone, Mammoth Cave, and Great Smoky Mountains. Plus Pearl Harbor, Indiana Dunes and Carl Sandburg's home. 12 states we visited were New Mexico, Texas, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, Indiana, Michigan, Wyoming and Hawaii (also drove through West Virginia and Ohio).

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