New Year's Resolutions for 2014

"Hold up your head.  You were not made for failure, you were made for victory.  Go forward with a joyful conscience."  - George Eliot

"All life is an experiment.  The more experiments you make the better."  - Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Believe you can and you're halfway there." - Theodore Roosevelt

Goals for 2014:

1 - Send an email/letter/card to a different person every week encouraging them, praising them and thanking them.

2 - Go to Orff Level 2 in Summer of 2014 at SMU.

3 - Start my Master's Degree at SMU.

4 - Make a list of 20 books I want to read this year and read them.  5 spiritual/Christian, 5 classics, 5 teacher/educational, 5 of my choosing.

     A.  Atlas Shrugged by Anne Rand
     B.  Pride And Prejudice by Jane Austen
     C.  Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
     D. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
     E. Three Men in a Boat by Jerome Klapka

     A. The Antelope in the Living Room by Melanie Shankle
     B. Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequist
     C. Grace for the Good Girl by Emily P. Freeman
     D. Undaunted by Christine Caine
     E. A Million Little Ways: Uncover the Art you were made to live by Emily P. Freeman
     F. Kisses from Katie:A story of relentless love and redemption by Katie J. Davis
     G.  Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis
     H.  Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller
     I.  And Life comes back by Tricia Lott Williford
     J.  Things Pondered by Beth Moore
    K.  One in a Million by Priscilla Shirer
     L. Wide Awake by Erwin Raphael McManus
     M.  Crash the Chatterbox by Steven Furtick
     N. Heaven is For Real by Todd Burpo

     A. This is your brain on music by Daniel J. Levitin
     B. STRINGS ATTACHED: One Tough Teacher and the Gift of Great Expectations by Joanne Lipman and Melanie Kupchynsky
      C.  Five Minds for the Future by Howard Gardner
      D. Simple ways to be more with less by Courtney Carver
      E. How to talk so kids can learn by Adele Faber
      F.  Teaching Naked: How Moving Technology out of your college classroom will improve student learning by Jose Antonio Bowen
      G.  A History of Western Music, 7th ed., by Burkholder, Grout, and Palisca (Norton) *To prepare for my music history/theory entrance exam to SMU
      H.  Switch:  How to change things when change is hard by Chip and Dan Heath
      I.  How Children Succeed by Paul Tough
      J.  The Energy Bus by Jon Gordon
      K.  Quiet by Susan Cain
      L. Letters to the Next President edited by Carl Glickman

My Choosing:
     A.  Allegiant by Veronica Roth
     B.  Wonder by R.J. Palacio
     C.  Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey
     D.  The Scavenger's Daughter by Kay Bratt
     E.  Defection Games by Haggai Carmon
     F.  Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
     G.  the curious incident of the dog in the night-time by Mark Haddon
     H.  Be Careful What You Wish For by Jeffrey Archer
     I.  Dave Barry's Only Travel Guide You'll Ever Need by Dave Barry
     J. The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin
     K.  Carry On Warrior by Glennon Doyle Melton
     L.  Matched by Ally Condie
    M.  Reached by Ally Condie
    N.  Crossed by Ally Condie
    O.  The Maze Runner by James Dashner
    P.  The Scorch Trials by James Dashner
    Q.  The Giver by Lois Lowry
    R. Legend by Marie Lu
    S. Prodigy by Marie Lu
    T.  One Nation by Ben Carson
    U.  The 100 year old man who climbed out a window and disappeared by Jonas Jonasson
    V. The Reading Promise by Alice Ozma
    W.  Yes Please by Amy Poehler
     X.  Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline

5 - Give myself $50 per month per person for 'fun money' towards clothes for myself and the girls.  (Don't have to apply to Jeremy because he doesn't get clothes unless he needs them and I end up overspending on clothes)  Total = $150 per month on clothes per person

January Spending
February Spending
March Spending
April Spending
May Spending
June Spending
July Spending and August Spending - didn't write it down!
September Spending

6 - Start the girls on a commission chart and teach them skills appropriate for their age.  Each girl has tasks to do on days Monday thru Friday.  They earn $ if they do their task.
Ex// Riley puts away all of her laundry; Julia helps me with hers.  Julia helps take out silverware and put it in the drawer; Riley helps by wiping down the table after meals.

7 - Exercise two days a week.  Wednesday and Friday - workout video at school. Friday and Saturday - run/walk.  That gives me four options to choose two days from and hopefully I can get stronger and more consistent!

8 - Travel somewhere as a family this summer!  San Antonio?  Missouri?  Michigan?  Anywhere - as long as it is the four of us!  Weekend or week; far or somewhat near.  Can't wait to see where we will go!

9 - Start the money saving challenge.  Savings jar.  Use it for something fun for the whole family at the end of the year?!  To see the challenge, click here:

10 - Do our second annual "Kindness Advent" in the month of December.  Days 1-24 we do kind things for others and family events that bring us together.

11 - Paint, spackle, and freshen up our downstairs bathroom.  Add new light and mirror if needed.  At least the mirror.  It's a hideous room... whoever put the really ugly wallpaper on only two walls had no taste.  Seriously.

12 - Attend a Women's Bible Study at church at the new West Frisco Location where we are now going.

13 - Cook a meal with my mom every month - alternating side dishes and main dishes.
January - Chicken Marsala with asparagus-new potato hash. (Southern Living)
February - Maple Balsamic Pork Tenderloin, Basic Vinaigrette (Shauna Niequist)
March - Mediterranean meal (Mixture of all and epicurious)
April - No meal together; an insane month!
May - Pineapple-Glazed Chicken with Jalapeño Salsa and Roasted Vegetable Gnocchi with Spinach Herb Pesto
June - No meal
July - Chicken shish-kabobs with rice
August - Meal?  What meal?
September, October, November, December.... - enjoyed plenty of meals together, but sadly no fun ones like earlier in the year.  Where did 2014 go?!

14 - Pray for a particular person(s) each day of the week all year:
Monday - Jeremy
Tuesday - Julia and Riley
Wednesday - school teachers and coworkers
Thursday - my family
Friday - my brother Jim
Saturday - Jeremy's family
Sunday - specific prayers for friends (Christine Chenault, Lea Jasper, Edwina Townsend, Stephanie Funkhouser, Beverly Perry and others that occur throughout the year)

15 - Learn one new song on the piano each month.
January - didn't do this and got the idea for it in the beginning of February.  Still plenty of months to hone a skill and add a goal!
February - Ballade in C Minor by Chad Lawson.  Sheet music purchased at
March - Dance You Pretty by Chad Lawson
April - Maple Leaf Rag
May - No song chosen
June - Le Secret by Leonard Gautier
July - Etudes de piano number 2 by M. Moskowski (for left hand only)
* Here is a video of the song performed faster than I am playing it - wow!
August -Another Chad Lawson :) - Reflection
September - Chad Lawson...
October - Chad Lawson...
November - Chad Lawson "Change of Season"
December - TONS of Mark Hayes Christmas Songs


  1. I have Kisses from Katie and both Grace for the Good Girl and Undaunted were excellent. And we are doing the same money saving challenge!

    Happy New Year!


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