I have to say, I'm pretty happy with where I am this month. I ended July pretty much on top of my goals and I'm proud that I stuck with so many of them. I know they aren't anything of consequence and should probably be things I manage to accomplish without the aid of a list or a reminder, but I really needed a kick in the pants at the end of June. I kind of had to teach myself to be a mom and a wife and a functioning member of society again. It had been so long since I balanced a checkbook or cooked a meal, that I struggled to get back in the swing of things. I'm happy to report that after a month of list making and reminders, I feel like myself again.
So how did I do?
I did work harder and accomplished MUCH more than I did in previous months. Although I didn't read any books of significant literary value, I downloaded a ton of inexpensive (sometimes free!) books from Amazon and read several books a week all month long. I've just started reading If I Stay again since they are making a movie. I loved it and the sequel the first time around. I've got And The Mountains Echoed on tap for the plane next week and I'm hoping to make a last minute run by the bookstore sometime over the weekend. We didn't quite finish reading Little House in the Big Wood with the girls this month, but we're close. Some nights we get a chapter in and some nights they fall asleep before we get that far. Either way, they are loving the story and I'm looking forward to continuing the series as we get back into school and more regular nightly reading schedule. Finances are organized. We opened a new credit card at the beginning of the summer and it pays all of our bills (except mortgage and car payments) and monthly expenses. I've paid everything else off and we are working on a new budget. The points we accumulate by using a card so frequently paid for my plane ticket and will hopefully help us travel a little more economically in the future! I survived a July without soft drinks, ate much better and started running again. I'm not back to running daily, but I hope after another month of several runs a week that I'll feel more like my old self again. We didn't get a ton of "house" work done, but we did start a few projects. We cleaned up outside, started our pea gravel project (we've since changed our minds a bit) and talked about a possible bath and/or kitchen reno. Unfortunately, a tree fell on our house this month, so we have some exterior repairs that now need to be made.
Now, on to August!!
1. Continue to treat my body better. Although I'm not promising I won't have a single Dr. Pepper this month, I did prove that I can live without them. I had a few glasses of sweet tea at dinner, but drank water for the majority of the month. I'm much less bloated and feel so much better. I want to continue upping my water intake, increase my mileage and start adding some weights again.
2. Read a few REAL books. In addition to the Khaled Husseini book for next week, I have a few other books by John Green to read and then I'm open to suggestions. Have you read anything great this summer that you would recommend?
3. Eat out less. Not only is it better for us to cook at home, but it's better on our budget. We spend way too much money on food and could be building a better savings account, building a house or traveling more if we were a little bit more careful. I have to stop giving in to my children's cries for Zaxby's and Subway!!
4. Get us all on a better school routine. With two kids in school this year, everyone will need to be more diligent about bed times, homework and sticking with a schedule. We've implemented chore charts and I think by having some structure in our evenings that it will help everybody feel a little better. I want to be better about packing lunches and backpacks before bed, getting dance bags ready over the weekend and laying out everyone's clothes the night before.
5. Resume meal planning. Man that made our life so much easier (and cheaper and healthier, too). I've been so faithful to my planner this month, that I think adding a meal planning section at the bottom of each day will help me stay on track.
6. Implement a cleaning schedule again. I loved Jen's post this week and her chart was so simple, but effective. We've also talked about resurrecting the spreadsheet. As detailed as it was, our house had never been cleaner. Now that we have a new dishwasher, my life has already vastly improved. If I could start doing a load of laundry a day, I think I might feel like a new woman!
7. It's our Anniversary month, so I'm hoping to celebrate like crazy. Not only on our weekend getaway (hooray for grown up vacations!!), but just more quality time in general. We love listening to music while we cook together in the kitchen, we're putting our heads together for a few fun house projects for fall and we have another weekend away planned for opening weekend of football season. I feel like I neglected my marriage so much in June, that I'm really trying to focus on being a more intentional partner and paying more attention to the things I'm saying and doing. We have a pretty amazing relationship, but there is always room for improvement!
Care to share what you're working on in August?