Thirteen things I learned in 2013

Reflect

As a teacher I am always asking my students to reflect on their work, to think about what they did well, what they could have improved on and what they could do to be more successful in the future.  With the new year still bright and shiny I thought it was time to reflect on the past year kinda in the same way.  So here, in no particular order, are thirteen things I learned in 2013.

1. I am stronger than I think.  Mentally, physically and emotionally.  This doesn’t mean that I always react the way that I should at any given moment in a particular situation but when I stop, put my big girl panties on and really get to the heart of the matter I am able to get “it” done.  That includes my 105 pound back squat PR in CrossFit.  Thankyouverymuch.

2. Family is incredibly important to me.  I am thankful that Carl and I have our own little lives with Harper (and now Auggie!) but this year I realized how important our family that lives a little farther south really is.  Whether it’s talking to my mom on the phone every day on my way home from work, sending text messages to my new sister-in-law, skyping with my gramps, facetime with Carl’s dad – all of it is important.

3. I spend way too much time on social media.  Yes, I realize the irony that I’m talking about social media as I’m writing this blog post.  However, I get far more out of blogging than I do from checking facebook and instagram 100 times to see what so and so is doing or who has made a comment on a picture that I’ve posted.

4. I enjoy cooking healthy meals far more than I enjoy eating junk food.  While Carl is the primary chef in our household (man has a knack for making some amazing sauces!), I really enjoy getting in the kitchen and cooking.  It’s even more fun now that Harper has started to help us prep food, too.  Girl loves to stir and mix and “Cook!”.  I have a feeling there will be lots of time with all of us in the kitchen this year!

5. I enjoy picnics and spending time outside.  When Carl and I first started dating we spent a lot of time outdoors.  We didn’t really camp, but we were always exploring this state park or that little town.  The last month we’ve spent lots of time on the road and instead of eating lunch out at restaurants, we’ve been packing a lunch and eating at the picnic spots at rest areas.  This not only helps us save money but it gives us a chance to break up the drive and stretch our legs and Harper can run around.  Perfect.

6. I love Thirty-One.  Thirty-One is a direct selling company that I started with one year ago today!  I am not the best consultant out there, but I’ve made enough to help us start a pre-paid college fund for Harper and I’m very proud (and thankful!) for that!

7. Organizing makes me happy.  I know it sounds crazy but I notice that when my life feels like it’s out of control, I can feel instantly better by putting away clothes, straightening up the living room, sorting mail, etc.  I have an obscene amount of baskets and bins in my house and Carl totally makes fun of me for it.  I think this is why Thirty-One is such a great fit for me.  Cute organizing products?  Sign me up!

8. There is nothing better than the sound of my daughter’s laughter. Harper is a pretty serious little girl who knows what she wants when she wants it (I wonder where she gets that from?!). She was three months old when she first laughed (although she started smiling a lot earlier) and then she didn’t do it again for another two months!  The sound of her laughter is much more frequent now, but something about it just makes my soul smile.

9. I have the most amazing husband. Ever. God truly blessed me with an amazing partner.  He is so patient and kind and knows just what to say when I’m having a moment (or two…) or just need a hug.  He is amazing.

10. I am not very good at balancing things in my life.  I have no understanding of what it means to have balance.  At all.  I have a very “all or nothing” personality and I hope that one day I will learn to be a little more “in the middle”.

11. I love decorating.  I love making little banners and printables for different holidays or events.  I love looking at our house and seeing how I can re-purpose something or move something to a new space to open up a room.  Again, I think this is why I love Thirty-One.

12. For the first time in 10 years, I’m considering a career outside of education.  The thought of making a career change terrifies me, but I’ve honestly wondered what else I would do if I didn’t teach.  I don’t want to go back to school, so I’m pretty limited, but maybe it’s time to look into curriculum development, working for the IB organization, or even CASIE.  If money was no object I would do something with photography, graphic design or even actually learn how to sew and open an etsy shop.  

13. I want to go back to church.  I know organized religion isn’t for everyone, but I definitely miss hearing a Message, Praise and Worship and just feeling the presence of God with so many people.  Daily doses of Christian music just isn’t cutting it any more.  I also know that it’s only through God’s grace that I have this list at all and I think it’s time for me to get back to glorifying Him through my life.

Whew!  That’s some list!

What are some things that you learned in 2013?

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