A Brand New Year

Today marks the beginning of a new year, and I know many are hoping that it will be better than the last. I am certainly one of them. 2016 brought struggles in just about every aspect of my life, from relationships to money to career, even health — I’m certainly not happy with the weight I’ve gained or the stress I’ve felt. But, as with so many things I do, I believe that if I take a deep breath and put my best foot forward, I can make good things happen.

I’ve mentioned before that I don’t really believe in resolutions. They seem like recipes for failure, as the moment you deviate from them you want to throw them out the window. Instead, I create goals — actions and ideas to strive for and hopefully accomplish before the year is through. Some will have sooner deadlines, but many are overall goals for the year. Here are the goals I have set for this beautiful new year:


  • Implement and maintain an exercise regimen that has me working out at least 3 times a week
  • Cut down high-sugar, high-fat snacks to no more than 1 a day
  • Read and implement The 52 New Foods Challenge to get my family and myself trying new foods and eating healthier

Making a Difference

  • Continue to collect change, and use proceeds to purchase items to donate
  • Find at least 2 activities Avery can help with that make a difference – volunteering, donating, etc.


  • Put forth plans to reach the Usborne goals I set, including participating in vendor events and becoming an Educational Consultant once the opportunity becomes available
  • Get all of my existing websites up and running with valuable content
  • Add to each of my existing websites on a monthly, if not weekly, basis (once they’re up and running)
  • Find ways to bring real, substantial income ($100+ a month) from my websites


  • Pay off my business credit card, our Firestone card, and at least one of our main credit cards by the end of the year
  • Pay off our personal loan by the end of the year
  • Start Avery on a weekly allowance (likely on his birthday — he’ll be 5) and teach him about responsible spending and saving
  • Create an emergency savings account with at least $1000 in it


  • Put forth plans to reach the personal goals I set (a little too personal to share publicly via blog)
  • Get Avery officially diagnosed (if appropriate) with ADHD so resources will be available to him if needed once he starts school in the fall (gasp!)
  • Continue weekly Family Fun activities on the weekends and biweekly pizza-movie nights

Some of these goals are ambitious; some are easy to reach. Some will likely be modified or tweaked as time progresses. But all of them mean something to me, and I am able to reach at least most of them by the end of the year, I will consider myself successful.

It’s a new year, a great time for a fresh start. So take a deep breath, make some goals and plans, and join me on a wonderful journey!