2014 Goals 2014 Reading

2014 Recap: January

February 5, 2014

January was a long and full month for us. Somewhat surprisingly, I feel like I/we still made a good bit of progress and were still mostly successful in meeting our goals, in spite of a nearly weeklong trip to Kansas for a family wedding. (Related: My post, Some 2014 Goals and My “Word for the Year”)


1. Physical Fitness

A. Running (Run 9 Miles Per Week) I have exceeded this goal this month, running an average of 15 miles a week, and now at over 75 miles for the year. I’m hoping to get myself to running 30 miles a week somewhat comfortably, as that is considered by some running groups to be the weekly distance needed to maintain running fitness.

I run twice during the week, and then try to take my longer run (13.2/half mar) on Saturdays. Although I’m pushing myself beyond my original goal, I feel like it helped to have an achievable goal in this area. I think setting the weekly goal at 30 miles/week or even 15 miles/week from the beginning would have overwhelmed me and kept me from pushing forward. As it is, I’m thankful for Pandora streaming radio (soundtrack channels!) for helping me push through. Right now, I’m doing most of my mileage on an elliptical, but have been doing some outdoor running. I want to transfer it to primarily outdoor running, but will need to do so gradually in order not to create injury.

B. Overall Fitness (Be at Peak Fitness by the End of 2014) I’ve got a long way to go on this. I’ve been doing some cross-fit workouts, but running 15+ miles a week already takes a good bit of time, and I’ve cut these out several times to focus on running. I plan to be smarter about working these into areas where it makes sense to multitask.

C. Squats (Be able to do 300/squats a day by the end of 2014.) Umm…let’s just keep focusing on the end of 2014! Still a ways to go on this, but first I need to create this as a habit to my daily routine.

2. Intellectual

A. Reading (Read 80-100 books) I read 6 books during the month of January, and am at a total of 9 finished now, putting me right where I should be for my 2014 Reading Challenge. I am a little behind where I’d personally like to be, but I’m not beating myself up about it for now. 🙂 (I’ve read only one book from my 14 Books to Read in 2014 post, Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird.) I reviewed the following books this month (all of the adult books), and these links are to my review posts:

      1. Jesus + Nothing = Everything (Tullian Tchividjian)
      2. Brideshead Revisited (Evelyn Waugh)
      3. Amusing Ourselves to Death (Neil Postman)
      4. Mindless Eating (Brian Wansink)
      5. Bird by Bird (Anne Lamott)
      6. Not a Fan (Kyle Idleman)

I also posted some of the children’s books we read in January here.

B. Spanish (Reach a level of basic conversational fluency in Spanish by the end of 2014.) Right now, I’m using the DuoLingo app, which is pretty cool. (I started at Beginner Level, mid-way through January.) Right now, I’m at Level 4. It’s ideal to do it every day, which I’m working towards.

C. Evernote (Use Evernote to catalog thoughts, ideas, and resources.) I’m using Evernote for sure, but need to refine and maximize my time and use of it. I plan to read Evernote Essentials to help with that. Thankfully, my husband has a copy for me to use! 🙂

3. Creativity

A. (Write a non-book-related, non-link-related blog post twice per month.) I posted a recipes for 20-Minute Tuscan Chicken and also several posts related to my goals.

B. (Improve my photography.) I didn’t do much work here, but I will be getting back into things a little bit with some of my freelance work.

C. (Work on creating art in other forms.) Does hanging up art on the wall and redoing our living room count? 🙂 That’s why this is a yearlong goal!

D. (Continue writing and improving writing in other realms.) I am writing more, but not at the level I want to be at.

4. Relationships *Not really posting progress here, just posting my goals for a personal reminder*

A. With my husband.
B. With my children.
C. With close friends and family.
D. With community.
E. With Extended community.
F. In Business Relationships
Through: Correspondence, improved personal contact, and where necessary, creating boundaries to prioritize more important relationships.

5. Spiritual

A. Bible Reading (Read through the entire Bible, in Spanish and English.)
I’ve finished reading through Genesis, Exodus, and Leviticus, but only in English.
If you read Spanish and have a preferred Spanish Bible version, particularly if it is available online or on an iPhone app, I’d love suggestions!
B. (Work on 1 Corinthians Project) Nothing here. My goal is to check off one area for this in this coming week, though.
C. Memorization (Work on selected passages as an individual and as a family.)
We are not where I want to be on this, but the kids are learning individual verses right. We memorized Psalm 23 while in Ecuador, and need to go back and review and work on that, too.

6. Business

A. (Move further toward goal of creating self-sustaining household income.) We made considerable progress in checking one item off this list and, Lord willing, will finish up one big goal early next week.
B. (Continue to read and research in specific fields.) Didn’t do much here, other than an occasional online article.
C. (Meet specific financial goal by the end of the year.) Our checking off will go toward this, but we are thankful to be moving steadily forward right now. This is a year of pushing ourselves and making some sacrifices, but I think we are able to do it without sacrificing the important goals of our family and in realization that the long-term benefits will be waiting for us.
Right now, we’ve learned a few things about working both smarter and harder, and have implemented some great changes (Daniel working Saturday mornings, Daniel working at Panera/away from home during the early mornings through lunchtime and then from home in the afternoons, etc…) that have really helped things run more smoothly. It’s the little changes, realizing what works for us, and taking on new things one simple change at a time that are helping.

Blog Posts in January 2014:

  1. 2013 in Books: Books Completed
  2. Links to Think: 14.01.06
  3. My Top 10 Books of 2013
  4. 14 Books I Plan to Read in 2014 (And 5 Books to Reread)
  5. Some 2014 Goals and My “Word for the Year”
  6. Links to Think: 14.01.13
  7. Links to Think: 14.01.20
  8. 20-Minute Tuscan Chicken
  9. Reading 2014: Jesus + Nothing = Everything
  10. Links to Think: 14.01.27
  11. Reading 2014: Brideshead Revisited
  12. Reading 2014: Amusing Ourselves to Death
  13. Reading 2014: Mindless Eating
  14. Reading 2014: Bird by Bird
  15. Reading 2014: Not a Fan

Looking Ahead

Beyond continuing to work on my previous goals for 2014 (running, reading, business, etc…), here are a few things I’d like to accomplish in February. (Though just to note, there are several things we are working toward that I don’t feel need to be public reading material, and therefore won’t be included here! :))

  • Finish organizing and decluttering our basement.
  • Send packages to 2 of our overseas relatives.
  • Finish up mail correspondence to family.
  • Redo and nail down a 2-week meal plan.
  • Return broken dining room lamp and install new one.
  • Finish removing wallpaper in kitchen and hallway.
  • Continue working on adding to our morning rituals with the kids.



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