What you do in your house is worth as much as if you did it up in heaven for our Lord God. We should accustom ourselves to think of our position and work as sacred and well-pleasing to God, not on account of the position and work, but on account of the word and faith from which the obedience and the work flow. ~ Martin Luther

Monday, January 05, 2015

Resolved: 2015


      If I were to 'name' the year or give it a word, as is so common on the internets (as Matt and I call them), this years' word would be UNCLUTTER.  As you'll see in my list, many of my goals revolve around uncluttering my life.  This year I am in need of some space.  Space in my brain, space in my home, space devoted to worthwhile things and thoughts and void of clutter.  I want to be rid of the excess that only serves to bog me down- both materialistic and otherwise.

I know that I will not meet every single goal written here this year but I know that I hit more than I miss and I wouldn't hit anything if I didn't first aim. 

In order to be more successful, I try always to keep my yearly goals both attainable and measurable.  I love to be able to check things off- and "be kinder, exercise more, etc" are not things that can ever be checked off.  Whether you have been kinder or not, you can always be kinder still.  Also- every month I look back over my goals for the year and make a goal list for that particular month.  In this way, I am able to put my goals in the front of my mind and set myself up for success.

With that said, here are my hopes for 2015~

The Year of Dwindling

* Sort through all clothing bins in Granary.  Get rid of at least 10 bins worth of clothing.  (Sell at yard sale/consignment shops.)  We have too much.  I have clothes for both genders, from newborn on up which I keep for the next baby. But the Lord isn't giving me any babies so...I guess it is time to cut down that supply a bit.  If the Lord ever gives us more children, I will be happy to head out to yard sales to restock if necessary.  ;-)  This is going to be a big job-and if I know myself, a hard one too.

*.Don't buy a skein in 2015.  I have quite the pile of stashed yarns.  Several very generous people have given me yarn throughout the years and I have contributed to my piles too.  This year I am resolved not to buy a single skein of yarn- and to use my stash yarns in as many projects as possible in order to dwindle its' size.  Since the yarns I have are in all different color lots and leftover amounts, it will be challenging to find suitable projects- but I am up for the challenge.  I may even come up with a button- if anyone is interested in joining me.

Sort through all bookshelves.  Sell unwanted books at yard sale and try out selling books on Amazon.

* Downsize school supplies, movies and games never played.  Sell/donate

Get rid of 2 garbage bags of my own clothes that I don't wear but keep around anyway.  (Why do I do this?)  Sell/ donate.

The Year of Strategic Spending
We work hard to spend less than we make, so that we have some excess money to work with throughout the year.  Instead of blowing that excess on cool things or vacations (though sometimes I WISH!), we put it directly toward strategic spending.  Things like home repairs, mortgage principle or necessities that we'd rather pay for outright.   And this year is going to be a doozy of a year.  I don't know how it is going to get done, but I am going to work really hard to get there.  And I remember wondering how we would ever possibly make our financial goals for last year and yet, we DID IT.

* buy a new (to us) van with as much upfront cash as possible since our old one is on its' deathbed.  Praying it waits to die until we can get our tax return back!  :-)  I have been setting aside money for several years to replace our vehicle because I hate (Hate HATE) making car payments.  While I don't know how we'll be able to buy one outright, I'd like to make sure I have as few payments to make as possible.

* Set aside money enough to re-do boys room and then re-do it!  We have to re-do the electrical work (it is the original electric and is scary unreliable),  add insulation to the walls and thus, new walls etc.  Another BIG job.  But necessary.  I am always praying our house doesn't set fire, that's how bad it is.

* Save up enough money to finish the porch in spring.

* Put an extra $200-$300 toward mortgage principle every month in addition to monthly payments.

* I really really really want to replace our couches.  I've been saying that for years but the money I save up for that purpose always goes to another, more pressing need.  I am hoping this is our year.  The springs have been broken for a while now, and the couches have been stained looking, but now the cushions are ripped as well.  LOVELY.

* Update Budget for this year to get all the above (or as much as possible) done.

The Hopestead Goals
( I was pretty overwhelmed with garden things last year so I am keeping things to a minimum here.)

* get pigs

* start own seedlings

* devote some serious attention to strawberry patch (maybe even move it.)

* keep eyes open for deal on fruit trees.  Possibly add pear and apples. 

* Possibly add grapes.

* Replace growing potatoes with growing dried beans.  (Storing potatoes lures the rodents in the house and boy, am I sick of that.  SO done with potatoes.  Beans can be put in jars.  The end.)

 The Me Goals
(These are the ones that I rarely meet- but I just keep chugging along...)

* Exercise 3 times a week- even just for 10-15 minutes a day.

* Personal devotions daily- even just 10-15 minutes a day.   While we are in the Word every day, I rarely make the time for my own private, personal time in the Word.  We are given 24 hours each day- what is 15 minutes?  Why are we here?  To glorify God and enjoy Him.  How can that be done well if I can't even devote 15 minutes a day focused solely on Him?  I'm going to shoot for 5 days a week because I want it to become habit and having skipped days hinders the whole habit formation.

*  Make it a priority to have a date night with Matt once a month

* write 5 letters a month

record books I've read at Good Reads

* Make at least one Christmas gift every month.  (I already know what I will be doing for quite a few people on my list and I have been gathering the supplies with 40% off coupons so for a while it will just be a matter of doing it.  When I have done Christmas making throughout the year before, it has been such a pleasant way to calmly and quietly prepare for Christmas giving.



Unknown said...

Great list!!! :)

Cindy said...

I don't know if you ever buy or sell on Ebay or its subsidiary Half.com
.... I prefer them to amazon for selling. they take a much smaller percentage. and if its school books or kids books they sell pretty quickly. amazon is a great place to buy, but they take a real chunk out of your profit. just in case you want to know. ;)

Terri said...

Rebecca,you always inspire me with your goals and how many of them you do accomplish. Great list!

Mary said...

What an inspirational list! Happy New Year!

catherine said...

Wow, what a list
You are, somehow, able to look beyond the daily duties of homeschooling and mommying, and plan goals for the entire year! Inspiring and encouraging...but, one question, how? Do you ever feel overwhelmed with everything and if so, what do you do about it?

catherine said...

Also, curious, do you happen to know your personality type? For example, I'm an INFP.

Farmers Wife said...

Great goals. I had a goal of reading through the entire bible a couple years ago, and the way I was able to do it was by having an accountability partner...knowing that special person was going to send me a quick text or email was wonderful motivation for me. It was also an encouraging time for me, in the Word, but also knowing my partner was praying for me. Even if its just for 2 weeks to develop a habit :) ... I think I might just go write my own goals for 2015, thanks for the inspiration! (meal plan and budget already done!)

Bobbi said...

I'm in a de-clutter year too! Also so glad your back! I've missed your posts!

Ulli said...

Great list, Rebecca! Can you exercise and read books at the same time? Ever think of selling your stunning photographs for extra income? I see photos simply mounted on foam board at craft shows in 8x10 size selling for around $10 each--even $15 sometimes. Try local places that don't charge a lot to have a table. You're inspiring.

Rain said...

These are great goals. I too am in the de-clutter zone. I started just before Thanksgiving and plan on going through til Easter most likely. I'm going through every drawer. I read a book recently where she recommends removing everything into a pile, holding it and then deciding whether or not it brings you joy. If not, out it goes. BTW I've been selling on Amazon for a full year and love it. They do take a chunk but they also give you $3.99 credit for shipping. It always costs less than this to ship, so it works out.
Blessings on your endeavors for 2015!

Stefanie said...

Good, I'm glad your going to make me go through my closet, and de-clutter my life. You always motivate with your accomplishments. I even posted my goals.
I thought the grainery clean out was awesome, but I am sure you will do something even grander this year.
Thanks for sharing your list so I can cheer you on.

lydia.purple said...

one of my goals last year was to "declutter everything - own only what we use and/or adds beauty to our home" and in the beginning it seemed so overwhelming. i just saw stuff everywhere... but i just kept doing a little almost everyday it seemed. and i can't tell you what a great feeling it is to live in a place free of stuff you don't use or like (anymore). i did sell a few things, but mostly i just gave or threw it all away, because i needed order and space more than money. and selling on ebay or amazon is a bit of work. but i'm sure you'll figure out for yourself how much time & effort you're willing to put in to make some money & space. part of my decluttering concept was that for certain areas that always seemed to grow out of clutter control i assigned a max. storage space and i don't own more than what fits. for example, i designated 2 large drawers of sewing supplies (1 fabrics, 1 for needles, thread, ribbon, zippers) i did a lot of sewing with what i had on hand last year to use some of my favorite fabrics up that wouldn't have fitted anymore. (similar to your yarn use up goal) also only 2 bookshelves for grown up books. it's not a lot but i own a kindle and i buy mostly ebooks these days. i love it! we blessed a bunch of people with free books.

also, i know you wanted to write a book for some time... self-publishing ebooks on amazon is quite simple and you can create some reasonable passive income by publishing even short specific books. like rebecca's guide to canning, or a book of icecream recipes, or about cheese making. i know people who with books like these 30 pages or so for a dollar or 2.99 make thausand bucks a month. maybe you should check it out. it could buy you a couch :)

Leah T. said...

I've been anticipating this post for a couple weeks! I even went back to past years to get some ideas and inspiration. Can't wait to read through this post more carefully. God's blessings on this new year! <3

stephaniegiese said...

You always have such inspirational lists to start the new year. Are you on facebook? If so, there may be a Mom Swap in your area. It is sort of like Craigslist, but only for Moms. It is very easy to sell clothes and books there and furniture will often come up for free or very affordable. We are in York, so I just searched for York, PA Mom Swap on Facebook to join.

Anonymous said...

Would love to know what home made gifts you made this year :)


debbie said...

yes would love to know what the kidsmade for each other

MJ said...

You have inspired me to think about what I want to do for the year....and to think about writing it down and see where I am at at the close of 2015. Thanks for the inspiration!

Me said...

Little tip: stalk craigslist for free furniture. I also keep tabs on local-ish nearby cities and have seen nice furniture listed on people's curbs for the taking.