Hello January - January Goals alittledashofdiva.com

January Goals

Hello January - January Goals alittledashofdiva.com

Hello friends! Welcome back and Happy New Year! Can you believe it’s 2017? I remember Y2K like it was yesterday, and hello, that was 17 years ago…time flies!

Since I turned 40 a couple of months ago, I’ve found myself extremely motivated to make some changes in my life, to start taking on more challenges and pushing myself instead of just letting life happen to me. I want to be the leading lady in my own life and not the best friend…extra points if you can name that movie!

One of the things I’ve decided to do for this year is to start making small monthly goals to help me be the woman I want to be, so today I’m going to share my January Goals with you.

january-goals alittledashofdiva.com

January Goals

1. Read Two Books

I can’t tell you the last book I actually read. I used to read a lot but let it slip away the busier life got with two kids and a husband and keeping the house up…I would really love to get back to reading. I miss it. So, my goal for this month is to read two books that have been on my running list of books to read for months!

January Goals alittledashofdiva.com

The Fault in Our Stars – John Green

January Goals alittledashofdiva.com

Silver Girls by Elin Hilderbrand

2. Make SELF CARE a Priority

January Goals - self care alittledashofdiva.com

I have a whole post coming on this one, but for now I’ll just say that I have so much clarity right now about how much self-care means and how damaging the lack thereof is to each of us. I’m making the choice to make myself a priority and that doesn’t make me selfish or self-centered, it makes me a woman who loves herself enough to know that taking care of herself means she will have more to give to others.

3. Invite one family over for dinner

Back in the day, I loved to have people over. Didn’t have to be a special occasion, I just loved hosting. I’d invite people over after church, or on a Tuesday. I loved to have friends come over to enjoy a meal and sit and chat over a glass of wine or a shot of tequila, while the kids ran around and played. I haven’t done this in a really really long time and I miss it so much. So my goal for January is to invite one family over for dinner or a bbq or something. It makes my heart happy to serve other people and make them feel loved.

4. Test four new meals to add to our monthly menu rotation

January Goals try new recipes alittledashofdiva.com

Ha! This makes me laugh

In all seriousness though, I don’t know about you, but my family gets in a food rut really easily. We eat the same meals week after week because they are easy and we get into a pattern because they take no effort. Then we start getting really bored with meals because we’ve been eating the same things so much, so then we start eating out and spending money we don’t need to spend on eating out. So, I’m going to start testing out one new recipe a week to add to our rotation to give a little variety from the same old stuff! I’d love to know your favorite recipes so I can give them a try!

5. Continue my 30 day challenges – no soda, plank a day, and no junk food

January Goals 30-day-plank-challenge-chart alittledashofdiva.com

I’ve been kinda stealthy about this one…I wanted to have a couple of successes under my belt before I talked about them. Back in November, my mom had challenged me and my daughter to a no-soda for 30 days challenge. This was a big one because I was drinking so much Pepsi, y’all. Like an unGodly amount of Pepsi. So, we took the challenge and I’m proud to say not a single drop of soda has crossed my lips since November 12th and I plan to keep it that way. When I was about 25 days into that challenge I was thinking about what the next 30 day challenge should be and decided to do a fitness related challenge next. I found the Plank – A – Day challenge and decided that was it. Basically you start with 20 second planks and work your way up each day until at the end of the 30 days you are holding a 5 minute plank. Now, before anyone makes any comments about holding a plank for longer than 3 minutes has no benefit, once we reached that 3 minute plank we started to change up the position. We start in a regular plank and work into a side plank and do other things like that during the 5 minute time frame. It’s amazing how even a 20 second plank can make you feel muscles you had long forgotten ;). Once that one was over, we moved onto a combo 30 day challenge that incorporates the previous challenges of no soda, plank 30 seconds in the am and 1 minute in the pm, adding in drinking 1 gallon of water a day, and 25 squats every time you go to the bathroom. So far, so good but I’ll let you know how we do when it’s over!

6. Be a better friend, check on people when they cross my mind

January Goals - friendship alittledashofdiva.com

We’ve all been there, we get busy with our lives and stop making an effort to check in with our friends. Or maybe we haven’t all been there and it’s just me…either way, one of my goals not just for this month but for every month this year, is to be a better friend. To take time and call or text or meet up for coffee with friends, to be genuinely interested in their lives, in the good times and the times they may be struggling.

I would love for you guys to share some of your goals with me and come back and check in with me to see how I’m doing with my own goals!

Ch – Ch – Ch – Changes

Happy Friday, y’all! I don’t know about you, but this entire week I haven’t had a clue what day it’s been. lol. I can’t wait for school to start back up on Monday just so I can keep my days straight!

I’ve always been one of those people who wrote out new goals or resolutions at the start of a New Year. It’s something that my family always did growing up and I just never thought about NOT doing it once I was on my own with my own family. Until this year. This is the first year I didn’t actually sit down and make a list of things I wanted to do or have happen this year. And you know what? It feels great.

I realized that for all these years that I was writing out a goal list, I never really gave it a second thought past the first day of the year. It would get shuffled to the bottom of a pile of papers and then eventually thrown away. That wasn’t doing me any good and so my goals weren’t being accomplished.

This year I decided to do something a little different. Do I have goals I want to accomplish this year? Absolutely! But I’m going about it differently than I have in the past. I am taking a more day by day approach to get me where I want to be in the long run.

I’m working on myself. I’m focusing on being more intentional in things I do and in being happy where I am. That doesn’t mean I don’t have hopes and dreams for the year, I do, but I’m just hoping that by focusing more on the here and now I will be more successful.

There are a few areas I’m focusing on more this year. Things that I have been thinking about for quite sometime, but I always felt that if I started them I wouldn’t be able to finish and then I would feel bad about myself so I just never started to begin with. That’s no good. So, I’m holding myself accountable to doing things that I know I need to do. If I fail, I fail. And then I will get back up and try again.

For a while now, I’ve been feeling like I needed to get back to my roots if you will. I am a Christian, but I don’t go to church. I don’t read the bible. I do pray occasionally. Something that I’ve been feeling I need to do is to stop being a Christian in name only. Start living it more. So I started the #shereadstruth plan. It is a daily plan, which helps me keep myself accountable because it’s totally doable and realistic when things are broken down to what I need to do daily instead of looking at the bigger picture of what I want over the year.


SheReadsTruth

One of the other areas I am wanting to improve is photography. So I’m doing the FatMumSlim photoaday on Instagram…again. I always do good for the first week and then I slack off. So I’m working on it day by day. It makes me happy to take pictures.

This is the USS Arizona Memorial at the state capital in Phoenix

The anchor from the USS Arizona

A piece of the 9-11 Memorial from the World Trade Towers at the state capital in Phoenix

If there is one area I feel I can always use more work in, it’s as a mom. I’m doing a 30 day mom challenge with my BFF – Harmony. Everyday there is a challenge and we remind each other to do it and are helping to keep each other honest, if it doesn’t go so well, we tell the other. But we are also there to celebrate our successes on the days we nail it. We’d love to have more moms join us, so let us know if you want in on the challenge!

Hopefully this new way of doing things will help me to be more successful in reaching the goals I do have for the year.

Social Media and Me Revisited

So I figured since we are halfway through this ‘new’ year it would be a good time to revisit my post from the beginning of the year about Social Media and Me. See if things have changed, or if I need to revise my goals or just recommit to them. Here is that post and I will post my new thoughts at the end…

I thought I would sit down and figure out what my goals are for this little blog of mine and how social media plays a role in the success of A Lil Dash of Diva. I think like most people, I started this blog a few years ago as a way for my friends and family to keep up with what was happening in our family but it quickly grew into something that was more for ME. I found that I loved to have a place to go and get my thoughts and feelings out. It has been a place so far where I haven’t encountered any negativity or nastiness (and I would love to keep it that way!). I know that I didn’t go into it to create a space where I would have thousands of followers or make money or even make friends with other bloggers and while the first two things have certainly not happened, and probably won’t ever happen the latter has happened a few times over.

So, moving into 2012 I want to set some goals for A Lil’ Dash of Diva to keep myself focused on why I really love to blog. It’s really easy to get caught up in how many followers you have (or don’t have) compared to other bloggers you ‘meet’. I never want this space to become more about how many followers I can get or how much money I can make. For me it’s more important that this space remains something that is mine, something that I will be proud of and not feel the need to be competitive with other bloggers.

Social media is a big part of today’s society and I would be lying if I said I don’t spend several hours a day on social media sites like Facebook or Twitter or Pinterest or Goodreads…see, I told you I spend a lot of time on social media! lol On each of these sites I have met people who I consider friends, some are IRL friends and some will only ever be friends in my computer.

My goals for 2012 for A Lil’ Dash of Diva:

Stay true to me

Focus on writing posts from my heart

Don’t get caught up in being competitive about followers and such

Find ways to give back or pay it forward

These are my goals for the New Year, what about you? Do you have goals for your little corner of the blogosphere? I’d love to hear them and maybe we can all encourage each other to reach our goals.

Happy New Year! xoxo

Well I am pretty happy that I still feel these goals are as important today as they were 6 months ago. On top of that, I feel like I have done a good job in not being competitive or envious of more popular bloggers or the amount of followers they have. Something I am still trying to figure out is how I am going to give back or pay it forward from my blog. If anyone has any suggestions for me I would love to hear them! Something else I really need to get better at is commenting back to my readers who take the time to leave me comments. I love y’all!!

So, have your social media goals changed any so far from what you thought you wanted at the beginning of the year to now? Share some of your goals, I would love to hear what is working for you or not. Maybe we can all help each other out.

Social Media and Me

I thought I would sit down and figure out what my goals are for this little blog of mine and how social media plays a role in the success of A Lil Dash of Diva. I think like most people, I started this blog a few years ago as a way for my friends and family to keep up with what was happening in our family but it quickly grew into something that was more for ME. I found that I loved to have a place to go and get my thoughts and feelings out. It has been a place so far where I haven’t encountered any negativity or nastiness (and I would love to keep it that way!). I know that I didn’t go into it to create a space where I would have thousands of followers or make money or even make friends with other bloggers and while the first two things have certainly not happened, and probably won’t ever happen the latter has happened a few times over.

So, moving into 2012 I want to set some goals for A Lil’ Dash of Diva to keep myself focused on why I really love to blog. It’s really easy to get caught up in how many followers you have (or don’t have) compared to other bloggers you ‘meet’. I never want this space to become more about how many followers I can get or how much money I can make. For me it’s more important that this space remains something that is mine, something that I will be proud of and not feel the need to be competitive with other bloggers.

Social media is a big part of today’s society and I would be lying if I said I don’t spend several hours a day on social media sites like Facebook or Twitter or Pinterest or Goodreads…see, I told you I spend a lot of time on social media! lol On each of these sites I have met people who I consider friends, some are IRL friends and some will only ever be friends in my computer.

My goals for 2012 for A Lil’ Dash of Diva:

Stay true to me

Focus on writing posts from my heart

Don’t get caught up in being competitive about followers and such

Find ways to give back or pay it forward

These are my goals for the New Year, what about you? Do you have goals for your little corner of the blogosphere? I’d love to hear them and maybe we can all encourage each other to reach our goals.

Happy New Year! xoxo

2012, Here we come!

Happy New Year’s Eve, friends! Can you believe we are almost in 2012? Does anyone else remember all the crazy Y2K stuff back in 1999? Gosh, that seems like FOR-EVER ago!

Anyhoo, I’m getting things all ready for the New Year and that includes making goals and resolutions for the coming year. I may not always reach the goals I set for the New Year, but I was raised with the belief that if you don’t set goals for yourself you don’t have anything to work towards. I don’t know that I still believe that whole-heartedly, but I do still make those goals and resolutions every year.

This year, in addition to my normal goals I am also starting on my 40 by 40 list. Most of the things on that list count towards New Year’s goals. Something that I think is usually on everyone’s list for the new year is to get healthy, fit, lose weight..whatever you personally call it. For me, its all of those things. I need to lose a lot of weight to make myself more healthy and fit. I have had a lot of success with Weight Watchers previously, and when I work the program I see awesome results. When I start making bad choices by not working out or eating more junk and less good stuff I don’t see results. So, tomorrow morning I am headed back to Weight Watchers. I will be attending meetings every Saturday morning…early. Every Friday night, we will take photos (front and side view) and measurements then Saturday mornings I will weigh in. For my exercise I will go back to what I love, yoga. I will also be starting the C25K program and I am really looking forward to that.

As part of my accountability I will be posting these pictures each week along with my weight loss and inches lost.

Week 1

I would love to hear your stories and we can support and encourage each other. I think we all know this isn’t just about losing weight, but also about finding out what made us gain the weight to begin with. I will be doing the emotional work too and hopefully will see some progress in that area as well.

40 By 40

Today is my birthday, and in honor of that I am going to post my 40 by 40 list. I have seen a few bloggers with lists of 30 by 30 and things like that so I decided to do one but mine is 40 by 40.  It scares me that I am close enough to 40 to have this list! haha

40 By 40

*These are in no particular order, just things I would like to do or see by the time I am 40 (in 5 years!GAH!)

Get completely out of debt! We are well on our way, just finished paying off one credit card and another will be paid off around tax return time.  

Get healthy and fit and maintain it!

Move to Mt Vernon IA

Visit every state in the Western US (CA, OR, WA, NV, UT, WY, MT, ID, CO) (we won’t count AZ since we live here!)

Build up a healthy savings account (meaning more than 6 months worth of living expenses)

Continue working on my family ancestry, go as far back as I can.  Figure out exactly how I am related to a hockey legend!

Read all of the classics I should have read while in high school 

Upgrade all of my camera gear

Open a small business that will generate enough income to buy a new car

Get family photos taken yearly (we haven’t had a professional family photo taken since Princess was 18 months old!)

Renew my wedding vows with Hubby ♥

Update our furniture.  I want all brand new items that we have picked out – no more hand me downs.

Put Princess in ballet and a music class

Get the matching tattoo’s with hubby that we’ve been planning

Go on a couples only vacation with the hubby

Take Princess to her first ever concert (I’m thinking Taylor Swift, Selena Gomez or dare I say it, Bieber)

Take a cooking class

Go to a big blogging conference (Blogher, Blissdom…you get the idea)

Write a book.

Print and scrapbook important photos from the last 10 years that include wedding, pregnancy, childbirth, family life, vacations.

Train for and complete a marathon in 4 hours or less

Learn to dance (ballroom, salsa)

Learn to knit.

Plan, implement and reap the rewards of a successful garden!

Take a girls only trip with Princess 

Take a family trip to Connecticut to show Princess and Hubby where I am originally from.

Take a cruise with the family

Get my teeth fixed

Finish getting all the piercings I want (industrial, nipples done…again)

Take a trip to New Orleans

Take a trip to New York City

Travel somewhere that I will need a passport to get there

Go to a Red Wings game in Joe Louis Arena

Take 2-3 small vacations a year

Provide a nice Christmas for a family in need

Donate $5000 to either American Cancer Society or Hospice of the Valley ( or $2500 a piece for each of them )

Help pay the bills so Hubby can go back to school for his medic

Get skin removal surgery after I lose the weight I need to lose

Go to Hawaii on vacation

Read 500 books by my 40th birthday!!

And there you have it! Now I will save this list so I can start marking things off and making all these things reality. Why don’t you make your own list and let’s help encourage each other to reach achieve our dreams!

Domesticity

do⋅mes⋅tic⋅i⋅ty  [doh-me-stis-i-tee]

–noun, plural -ties.
1. the state of being domestic; domestic or home life.
2. a domestic or household act, activity, duty, or chore.

Do you have a certain chore that just makes you feel really domesticated? We all have chores and stuff we have to do around the house, but not all of them really make you feel domestic, at least they don’t make me feel that way! All except hanging laundry on the clothes line.

Photobucket

While I am hanging the laundry I think about all the money we are saving by not using the dryer to dry 12 loads of laundry a week, I think about all the chores I have yet to do that day – mind you, not all of them will get done, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t on the list! I think about how hot it’s going to be today and that the laundry will only need to be out for 30 minutes or so before its completely dry. I think about what I need to take out for dinner, what will be for lunch, how many times I will have to tell my daughter to put her toys away or pick up after herself…

I am starting to think I should take that time hanging the laundry to think about what I want for our future, what goals do I have for my family? What dreams do I have for my family? What vacations would I like to see us take? Where will we be in 5 years? Hmm, all things to ponder and hopefully I will have answers to these questions tomorrow, after all, the next load is waiting to be hung on the line…