I wrote a New Year’s Resolutions post at the beginning of January 2017 and was so thankful for the positive response that I received from everyone. I plan to come back every month with a goal check-in, so that I have even more incentive/accountability to continue working on my goals. Here is my September goal check-in.
Goal #1: Publish at least one blog post per week on Luggage and Literature.
Met in September.
Goal #2: Complete the Modern Mrs. Darcy Reading Challenges.
You can check out my previous post outlining my 2017 reading plans here. So far, I’m ahead of schedule for completing both the Reading for Fun and Reading for Growth challenges. My September Reading List post lists the categories that I fulfilled this month.
Goal #3: Play cello at least twice (preferably more) per month.
I played cello twice in September because of the Hastings Symphony’s Chautauqua Park concert I’ll be playing more in October.
Goal #4: Pay down debt.
We continued making progress toward this goal. We have no credit card debt. I paid off my Acadia in August, then discovered it needed $7700 in repairs in September necessitating a replacement. So now I have a car payment again, although we’ll be hitting this really hard over the next year. Mike’s pickup will be paid off in October. Our next focus will then be business debt, my new Acadia, and Mike’s smaller student loans. We haven’t been paying extra on our student loans or mortgage so far. I found out last week that the Public Defender’s Office will be going to a full-time office (rather than part-time at the present time) beginning January 2019. My goal is to have my business line of credit paid off before then, as well as to have my new Acadia half paid off. I think this is doable, and will make the adjustment easier.
- Prepare lunches on the weekend. Not met this month, although I did have chicken noodle soup in the freezer in individual bowls for lunches.
- Pack lunch or eat at home every weekday for lunch, unless meeting colleagues. Met this goal when I was in town, although I was out-of-town quite a bit in September.
- Eat dinner at home five nights per week. Met when I was in town.
- Prepare/freeze dessert items (I have a major sweet tooth, and if we don’t have dessert items in the house at all, I’m much more likely to go get ice cream or run to the store and purchase snack items). We have frozen peanut butter cookie dough so that we can make cookies after dinner. We have also had other snack items on hand.
- Curb spending on books by utilizing the library. I’ve been reading books that I purchased at the Friends of the Library book sale, and that I already had on my Kindle. The only books that I purchased were on Audible, and with my credits.
- Curb spending on clothing and accessories, especially by utilizing Pinterest for remixing my existing wardrobe. I purchased a Tom Petty t-shirt, and a Kaaboo t-shirt this month. I also purchased a couple of polka dot blouses for work. Pinterest continues to be very useful in making my wardrobe feel fresh.
- Use up back stock of MaryKay and hair products before purchasing more. I didn’t purchase any MaryKay or hair products in September, as I still had quite a lot.
- Clean out refrigerator/freezers/pantry and use up existing food rather than just purchasing more. We have a well-stocked pantry and freezer, and are working out way through it. We’ve mainly purchased milk, bread, produce, meat, and paper products.
- Curb unnecessary trips to Kearney (this is about half an hour from our town, so the gas can get pricey when we run there for no reason other than we’re bored/want to go shopping/etc.). I don’t recall making any special trips to Kearney in September.
- Take on additional cases and work more hours to increase income. In September I was quite busy at work, but also was able to take a bit of time off for fun (a trip to Yellowstone, as well as to Kaaboo Del Mar).
Goal #5: Be healthier.
I got back on the health wagon in June, as it was simply necessary. Since then, I’ve been working my way through The Beck Diet Solution (now for the second time), and have found it quite helpful. Essentially the book isn’t a diet, but rather helps you to work through the sabotaging thoughts that lead to weight gain. I’ve already started catching myself in them, and am hopeful that I continue to make progress in the right direction (a decrease on the scale).
- Drink no more than 3 pops per day, preferably no more than 2 (but I’m realistic about my job). Met this goal probably 90% of the time.
- Drink at least 8 cups of water per day. Met this goal most days. I’ve reduced back to the 8-10 cups per day range, as I think that it’s best for me right now.
- Eat/drink at least 2 servings of dairy per day (when I did Weight Watchers, the studies showed that this contributed to weight loss, plus I know that it makes for healthier bones and teeth). Met nearly every day.
- Eat at least one fruit or vegetable per day, preferably more. Met most of the month.
- Drink 1 cup of water before each meal. Met some of the month, but not consistently.
- Take my water bottle with me during the day. Met now that I have a couple of insulated cups that keep my water cold all day long.
- Pack lunches or eat lunch at home during the week. Met this goal for most of the month (see above).
- Eat dinner at home five nights per week. Met this goal most of the month (see above).
- Do 10 sit-ups and 10 push-ups 3 times per week (in law school, I had a professor who expected all students to do 10 push-ups at the start of each of his classes, and was surprised how doing this 3 times per week actually made me feel stronger by the end of the semester). Not met.
- Exercise (walk/swim/yoga/YMCA class) 3 times per week. Not met.
- Walk at least 6,000 steps per day, preferably more. Met probably 90% of the time, which is an improvement. And because of the trips to Yellowstone and Kaaboo, I was WAY over on my step goals several days.
- Sleep 8 hours per night. Met probably 75% of the time. I will do better at this in October, as it makes a huge difference for me.
- Continue taking a daily multivitamin. Met.
- Track food daily in My Fitness Pal. Not met.
- Continue utilizing my Fit Bit to monitor activity, steps, food, sleep. Met, except when it wasn’t working. I think I need to send it back and get a new one.
Goal #6: Take one trip or visit one local area attraction per month.
I get stir crazy if I stay home for too long. To combat that, I think that this goal will help. Although monthly travels to exotic locations aren’t realistic in my stage of life and with my career, a monthly trip somewhere is realistic. So it can be international, domestic, or just a local area attraction, just some reason to leave my house and my town. Plus there are several museums in my area that I’ve been meaning to visit, but just haven’t gotten around to. So I’m actually really looking forward to this goal. This goal is in progress.
- January: The Museum of Nebraska Art (MONA), and The Great Platte River Road Archway, Kearney, NE (I’ve wanted to visit the archway since we moved to the area, but haven’t gotten around to it yet…probably because Mike is absolutely not excited about visiting it). We visited MONA in January. After looking at the admission price for the Archway, we opted to skip it for now.
- February: Roatan! What a great time! I’ll be posting about this in the future, so stay tuned!
- March: Scuba diving at Bonne Terre again, perhaps The Roatan trip was February into March and was glorious. Bonne Terre ended up not working out in March, but I did go to Sioux Falls, SD. I met up with my parents for a day, then also spent a day with my friend Tara. It was really fun!
- April: Black Hills for Easter with family, I hope. Met. We spent 4 days in the Black Hills with family. We also spent some time wandering through downtown Rapid City, went for a drive in the Northern Hills, and stopped at Homestake Mine.
- May: Topeka, Kansas to watch NHRA drag racing, and Witchita, KS to see family. This was really fun, and a much-needed escape.
- June: Stuhr Museum, Grand Island, NE. I didn’t visit the Stuhr Museum in Grand Island, NE. My friend Tara did come and visit me for our local Swedish Days festival, though. And Mike and I have spent a fair amount of time at Sandy Channel lately (Mike to scuba dive, and me to relax and read). I’ll have to visit the Stuhr Museum another month.
- July: Michigan again and Canada, perhaps This didn’t happen due to having trials scheduled. But I did go to the Black Hills for a weekend visit with my family, including some drag racing (against my sister!) and riding along with my dad (a 7 second 1/8 mile pass with lifted the front wheels off the ground).
- August: Total Solar Eclipse on August 21 right in my area, Cincinnati, Ohio for a conference, and Norwalk, Ohio for a Pontiac car show and drag races. Whew! What a whirlwind of a month! Stay tuned for posts about all the fun I had!
- Labor Day weekend (August-September): Yellowstone. This trip is something that we added this month. We went with our friends Randall and Paige, and had such a fun time!
- September: Kaaboo in Del Mar, California, if I can find a partner in crime to go with me. This was so, so fun! Jamie and I had a great time eating Mexican food, admiring artwork, and taking in amazing concerts!
- October: Willa Cather museum in Red Cloud, NE
- November: Florida perhaps (Mike wants to get his full cave diving certification, and I’d like to go back to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal) Mike is actually going cave diving in December now, and they’re going to a different part of Florida than last time, so I’m not sure that I’ll be going along. We’ll see.
- December: ??
- I also need to plan a get together with my dear friend Tara. She and I have talked about several different options, but need to nail down the date and location of our visit. Met! We got together in March in Sioux Falls, where she lives. And she came to visit me in June.
- In 2016, I also had a super fun girls weekend with some of my closest friends from college. We talked about making it an annual occurrence, so I need to check in with those gals as well, then nail down the date and location of girls weekend 2017! I think this is going to be postponed to 2018.