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2012 Goals: June update

How are you doing on your goals for 2012? I’m excited about the progress I made in June…

Read through the Bible in a year. {I’ve been keeping up with this faithfully.}
Read through the 24 books on my 2012 booklist. {I’m finished with June’s books and have read quite a few other books!}
Listen to 12 audiobooks. {I skipped June’s audiobook because I discovered it wasn’t available as a downloadable audiobook, but I listened to July’s instead!}
Run in at least one 5K race. {I’ve been running at least a few 3.1+ mile runs on the treadmill each week and am slowly working on getting my time down. I’m hoping to sign up for an official race soon, just need to get over my fear of signing up for a race as it’s something I’ve never done in my adult life! Yes, I know, I need to totally just get over it and sign up already. :)}
Complete the Couch to 10K program.
Tackle 12 Do-It-Yourself Projects. {I didn’t get the homemade crackers made last week like I’d hoped — mostly because it was too hot to turn on the oven on the days when I had time to make them! I’m hoping for a cooler day this week so I can make them!}
Focus on one habit per month. {We really, really intentionally worked on getting places on time in June — and we actually pulled it off most of the time! I discovered that we really have to plan to leave 45 minutes early in order to make it places on time. Crazy, I know, but when we do that, we’re getting places on time — yay! This month, I’m going to continue working on getting places on time as well working on getting things done early — another area I really struggle with.}
Learn to use my new DSLR camera (huge surprise Christmas present from Jesse!!) & improve my photography skills. {I’m excited to be seeing some improvement and progress with this! And I’m also excited that I’m beginning to feel more and more comfortable using my camera!}
Take at least one photo a day and put together a page every week for my Project Life album. {This is caught up since last month, I just need to write notes in some of the pages!}
Memorize Colossians using the plan and free download here. {I’m almost caught up with this.}

Go on the Love Like You Mean It Cruise. {Done–read my recap here.}
Go on two Marriage Retreats (Went to Cincinnati together in April).
Have monthly date nights. {We had one date in June.}
Read four books together. {We’ve done two books so far this year.}
Read at least 3 books on marriage. {I’ve read two so far this year.}

Continue regular dates/outings with each of the children individually. {I went on at least one outing with each child individually in June.}
Continue Grace and Truth memory book. {The children memorized one verse plus one verse of a hymn in June.}
Ice-skating lessons for all three children. {The children finished up their third round of ice-skating lessons and we’re taking a break while we do swimming lessons!}
Swimming lessons for all three children. {We started a two-class these last week and the children are loving it!}
Finish second grade, begin third grade with Kathrynne. {Kathrynne finished second grade in May — woohoo!}
Finish kindergarten, begin first grade with Kaitlynn. {Kaitlynn finished Kindergarten in May and is excited about beginning first grade soon.}
Start preschool with Silas. {Started this in April.}
Go on at least one field trip every month. {We went on one field trip in June.}
Go on at least one family vacation. {We have one planned for July.}
Finish at least 15 read-aloud books. {We’ve finished 14 read-alouds so far this year and we’re on track to finish at least three more this month — so we’ve almost completed this goal!}

Ministry/Friendships/Extended Family
Write at least two handwritten notes every month to encourage someone. {I wrote & mailed four handwritten notes this month.}
Continue being involved in our local church, homeschool group, young couple’s group, and blogging accountability group. {Ongoing}
Continue with weekly get-togethers with both sides of our extended family. {Ongoing}

Continue to take Sundays off from blogging/business work. {Ongoing}
Continue keeping strict Office Hours for the business/blogging time each day. {Still plugging away on this!}
Switch to a paperless planning system. {This is the one goal I think I’ve officially decided to drop this year as it just wasn’t working for me. Back to the paper.}
Follow my weekly blogging plan. {I stuck with my blogging plan all month in June, if I’m remembering correctly — woot!}
Plan blog posts out at least a month in advance. {I made some great progress in this area in June!}
Write and schedule blog posts at least a week in advance. {I’m not a week ahead yet, but I’ve been blogging ahead a lot more recently and am excited to be making some progress on this.}

Continue to tithe 10% of our income. {Ongoing}
Give generously to needs in our community and around the world, as God prompts us. {Ongoing}
Pay cash for a new-to-us vehicle to replace our family’s van. {We’re still looking and haven’t found anything we love in our price range yet!}
Finish saving for and purchase a rental property with cash. {We’re in the process of investigating our options in our price range right now and deciding if we want to go ahead and purchase something or continue saving. At this point, it’s looking like there’s a good possibility we might be purchasing something very soon. I’ll keep you posted.}

How Are You Doing on Your Goals for 2012?

If you’ve posted goals for 2012, I’d love for you to post an update on how things are going and share your link in the comments. If you don’t have a blog, feel free to just leave your update as a comment. Let’s encourage one another to live lives of intention and purpose!

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  • We paid off our student loans in March, which was our first major financial goal. Now we’re saving up for a new car to replace my husband’s barely still running car.

    I’ve been working on one new habit each month. Here’s my six month update:

  • Laura says:

    Did you post somewhere how you broke these big goals into daily/weekly goals? I’d love to know your plan of how you are tackling these. Thanks!

  • I’m moving along, though it seems like most of my goals will not be completed till the fall. That is understandable as most have to do with produce.…ls-july-reivew/

  • robyn says:

    can i ask what you’re doing to improve your photography skills? your photos are looking really good and i’ve noticed improvement. online tutorials? classes? just using auto or are you manually adjusting or aperture, ISO and shutter speed? I’m super curious. I’ve had a nice nikon for about a year and am really wanting to improve on my skills but there are no digital photography classes offered near me. i’m not happy using auto all the time, especially outside and have been messing around with manual mode but can’t seem to get it right when i’m outside. thanks!

    • Crystal says:

      Basically, I’m just taking a lot of different pictures with a lot of different settings and learning what works and what doesn’t. I’m also critiquing my photos when I upload them and taking mental notes as to what I could do to improve them. I’ve also read a few tutorials online (I’d like to make it a priority to do more of that!)

      I have yet to really dive into the manual stuff yet; I figured I should probably start with auto first and try to get the the hang of things.

      If you find any fantastic tutorials online, definitely send me the link. I have so much yet to learn!

  • Melissa says:

    Where did you take your field trip in June?

    We are making progress paying off our debt. 20% of the debt gone in 8 months.

  • Laura says:

    I’m excited to hear your plans for the rental property. Buying a rental is something my husband and I are thinking about doing so I am really interested on hearing your thoughts about it too.

    • Anna says:

      My husband’s full-time job is buying foreclosures and renting them out, my best advice is to make sure you’re getting a HUGE projected percent return on investment (my husband usually aims for between 30 and 40%) because otherwise when the inevitable money-sucking problems come up, if you only projected a slim profit margin, they will be eaten up in no time. Examples include: periods of vacancy, an eviction (evictions can be simple, but often an angry ousted tenant will trash a house, and it will need to cleaned up, possibly entirely repainted, carpets replaced) not to mention the court fees associated with evictions, plus the rent you already lost. Also find out how often your city requires inspections, you must not only pay for the city inspector to certify your home, but pay for the long list of nit-picky repairs that go along with it (the requirements are much more stringent with rentals than owner-occupied) sometimes these inpections are every two years, if you would like a section 8 tenant (government guaranteed rent) that is a great plan, but the inspection is even more strict! Then of course the everyday repairs, bug infestations, overflowing toilets etc! This is not to scare you off, because as I mentioned this is our sole source of income, and there has never been a better time to invest in real estate! Just be sure to invest in a cheap, cheap rental, such as a foreclosure, especially if this is your first one you do not want to sink a large amount of money while you are learning the ropes! =)

  • Heather says:

    Oh, I love your goal for a Project Life Album. I’ve been looking for a way to record memories/pictures. I’m so behind in that area of life!

  • jenn says:

    i totally understand the fear of running in a race. I was not a very athletic person and then I fell in love with the peace of running and hope to do two races before my birthday in the end of september. Good luck.

  • I’m excited to here about your investment property. Having worked in banking for over 11 years I can say there is some great deals out there on this type of property.

  • Alicia says:


    I love love your blogs on goals – so very encouraging. My wonderful husband created a document for me over this past weekend that included a box for weekly goals and then boxes for daily goals underneath that. I also created a book list for myself and am about to finish Eat That Frog. What a helpful book! Thanks.

  • Alicia says:

    Also- You are really doing a great job on your goals! It makes me think that if someone else can do this with three young kids then I can too.

  • Kristin says:

    Your goals continue to be so inspiring!

    Here are mine for the week:

    My husband and I recently talked about trying to attend a couples/marriage retreat. Any recommendations on how to find a good one?

  • Ac says:

    Congratulations on finding a solution that helps you get places on time! I have several friends who really struggle with that…maybe I can send them a link to your post? 😉 (kidding)

  • Amy Lauren says:

    Good luck with running a race. It’s a rough time of year to race down south where I am, because of the heat, but my suggestion for any first-time race is to find a local one where the proceeds benefit a school, charity, or is in memory of someone. Usually those races are a lot more low-key and there are walkers and people in the community just doing it to support the cause, so it’s totally noncompetitive. Plus, your money goes to benefit the cause (btw, I personally don’t care for the ones for the big charities, as I feel like a lot of that money actually goes toward race costs and having nice shirts, refreshments, goodies, rather than the actual charity).

  • Theresa says:

    I started C25K with a friend at the beginning of summer. We signed up for a race before we even finished the first week, so we’d have a goal to work towards. Knowing I’ll have a friend with me, has helped with the nerves of actually running a race. Good luck!

  • Mackenzie says:

    I love that you have monthly date nights with your husband. How sweet 🙂

  • Victoria says:

    Your blog has really inspired my to set goals this year. I just revisted my planned goals and have realized that I have made more progress than I thought! Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Laura says:

    thanks for your earlier reply — another question.. audiobooks? library or purchase them? i’ve used the library some but there’s not a huge selection always — but i hate the thought of paying 20.00/book on itunes… thoughts?

    • Crystal says:

      I’d check your library’s online download selection, interlibrary loan, and/or free audiobook sites first before ever paying for an audiobook.

  • Liz says:

    I too was nervous about running in an actual 5k race, but I took the plunge and did it and when I crossed that finish line I was so proud of myself for accomplishing this “bucket list” goal.

    Like NIKE says “Just do it”


  • KimH says:

    Hi Crystal, I just wanted to encourage you to keep on with the getting places on time. It doesnt affect only you and what you are doing at the moment.. it can affect you & your children in ways you may not realize.

    My mother was perpetually late my entire life. I took ballet for 13 years and I remember once she was on time to pick me up.. I cant tell you how shocking that was. But what I really remember, is being left alone, waiting forever for my mom to come pick me up.. there at ballet, from the skating rink when I was a tween, anywhere & everywhere. I cant tell you how embarrassed I was to go to church, birthday parties or other social events and walk in late, even as a little bitty kid. Thanksgiving dinners, Christmas dinners, you name it..

    She was even late for my sisters wedding.. I was my sisters maid of honor.. but I was late too because I had to ride with my mother. The priest didnt wait for us either.. It was so sad & so humiliating.

    We all laugh & say Mom is going to be late to her own funeral.. but I think she was actually on time to my sisters funeral, which is shocking, and how sad.. She waited until then to be on time instead of her wedding.

    You may not be at that point yet.. but we all know what we practice is what we become.. What we pay attention to & work on is what we achieve.. Im 51 years old and I’ll do anything to avoid being late.. it makes me ill to even think about it.. even all these years later.

    I have so much respect for you & all that you do. I hope & pray you keep working on this… it much more important than you know.

    • Bobbi says:

      My story in exactly the same. No one knows how humiliating it is for a child to be constantly late. My mother was the same as yours. Because of this, I am NEVER late. You can do it, Crystal, and it’s so worth it! My best to you~

  • I think that figuring out how you accomplish goals is the best place to start. I have done much better when I make monthly goals and try to do a couple each week. It gives flexibility for unexpected circumstances, but it always gives me time to enjoy them, too. Sometimes I am so guilty of just doing things to “check them off the list” and miss the enjoyment of it all. I often focus on the goal and not on taking in each moment. Maybe I should make that a goal–haha!!

  • Esther says:

    Crystal–you’ll love running your 5k! I did my first one in March of this year. It was the first time I did a race by myself. However, my husband and two kids were there to cheer me on. Since it was a community race, my 5 year old started with me and ran for about 200 yards. After that she joined my husband and our 3 year old and they cheered me on from various spots along the course. The very best was seeing their faces at the finish line. Have Jesse and the kids do the same for you and the 5k will be no trouble at all! Good luck!

  • Betsie says:

    I’m with the others – you will absolutely love finishing that first 5K! I actually wrote a post with 5 tips for a newbie runner’s first 5K a while back on my blog – my first bit of advice was to just sign up for a race, already! 🙂

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