2014 New Year’s Goals Check-In

Happy New Year all! Can you believe we’re already more than a week into the new year? Last year went by so quickly!

2015 winterscape

I know many of you followed along with my monthly goal updates for 2014, which abruptly ended in June thanks to my crazy summer schedule. I didn’t want to just let it slide, though, so here’s one last check-in. And as for this year’s goals? Stay tuned for those in my next post!

One big, overarching theme? I didn’t take into account how much time I would need to devote to class and thus not be able to devote to everything else. This means I didn’t get as much done as hoped, but am happy with how much I did get done given my limited time.

Anatomy & Physiology book

Personal Goals

  • Try a new trend/clothing item I wouldn’t normally: A?

Believe it or not, towards the second half of the year, my approach to my wardrobe took a completely new approach. I started minimizing big time, donating items I didn’t love, keeping things that I did love but that were too big (for potential maternity clothes some day), and selling other items on ThreadUp. Some of this minimizing was inspired by Caroline at Un-Fancy, Jennifer of The Daily Connoisseur/Madame Chic, and Anuschka of Into Mind. I was trying to be someone I really wasn’t by going for the trends, and in developing more of a minimalist wardrobe, I feel I’m being more true to myself. I love being able to know exactly what I have to wear for certain occasions and having some great go-to pieces. I still have a few gaps to fill, but I’ll get there slowly. I’m all about quality, not quantity.

Into Mind Minimalist Wardrobe

c/o Into Mind

  • Take more pictures: B

I’ve been decent about taking pictures, and made more of an effort over the holidays. I’ve found that if I tag team it with the husband, we get some great pics. I would love to make a 2014 “yearbook” of sorts in the coming months, inspired by Young House’s Love annual albums (who else misses them?!). Something of slightly better quality than our (mostly free) Shutterfly album. We finally picked a wedding picture to be framed, too! Woohoo! Only took an entire year!

  •  Make a new menu item weekly: B

While we didn’t make a new item every week, we certainly expanded our horizons food-wise. I credit a lot of this to watching Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern and continuing our open-mindedness following our trip to Europe. I’ve even developed a higher tolerance to spicy foods, which the husband is very happy about!

Korean side dishes

Side dishes from a recent trip to a Korean restaurant

  • Travel: B+

We had a quick weekend away in Maine for a family wedding, made it out to Colorado to visit my brother, and went away to western Massachusetts for our five-year anniversary. Add in some random weekends at my parents’ lake house and another at their new ski condo, and I’d say that’s pretty successful given my schoolwork schedule.

  • Read more, especially instead of watching TV: A-

I definitely went through phases of making a conscious effort with this. Instead of eating weekend meals in front of a screen (whether the TV, my phone, or my computer), I make myself sit down and read a magazine or a book. Though I enjoy less screen time, I also look forward to sitting down to eat dinner and watching an episode of one of our new favorite shows, Chopped, with WHH. It may sound silly, but we have learned a lot from this show, becoming more adventurous in the kitchen and looking forward to trying even more new foods. The way the chefs have to make do with the ingredients has definitely inspired me to try different concoctions at home.

Chopped tv show logo

I do so much reading with my current class (microbiology) and now that I’m onto the last published Game of Thrones book, A Dance with Dragons, that I look forward to watching a bit of the show and discussing with WHH what we’d do in their situation. But overall, TV consumption is down!

A Dance with Dragons, A Feast for Crows

Four down, one to go! 

Haha. I think this one was a bit ambitious given everything that was going on. The newly renamed TRY / In 2015 board got very little love last year aside from our homemade kitchen shelves, refinishing our new kitchen island, and adding some mixer attachment hooks on the inside.

Refinished kitchen island

There are definitely some items on my radar to do for this year, such as organizing my gift wrap that currently resides in the basement (I’ve always loved wrapping gifts!), creating vacation boxes to hold those random papers from our trips, and getting new items on the blank walls in our bedroom and living room in addition to the photo book already mentioned. I think these will be manageable given my class is over in March.

  • Simplify house further: A

I have to give myself a pat on the back–I seriously rocked this one this year, especially towards the second half of the year. In addition to minimizing my wardrobe, I took a good, hard look at some stuff and had no problem getting rid of it. I’ve gotten better with separating the emotional attachment of items. My mom’s been giving me a bunch of stuff lately as she’s been cleaning out their house, such as my old ski jacket (below) that still kind of fit me.

One quick trick for getting through the emotional part? Take a picture to remember it! A picture takes up a lot less room, physically and mentally.

Old coat

(This was actually cool back in the early ’90s…I think…)

I have loved the effects of minimizing our house and hope to continue this trend into the new year.

  • Meet with financial advisor: A

We got this done in the fall and were actually so relieved that we’re on track with retirement! What a weight off of our shoulders! We’re going to meet with him a few more times to figure out how to best plan for future expenses (travel, next house, next cars, etc.) to put us in the best place financially. The better off we are, the more choices we have!

  • Write reviews, such as for products and travel: B-

I have been good about this moving forward, but still think about the great places we went and haven’t done yet. I’ll hope to get to this once class is done.

Walkabout Florence Riomaggiore

One of the highlights of our trip: this tour of Cinque Terre (this is at the last stop in Riomaggiore)

Professional:

  • Take co-requisite courses for nursing school: A+

A&P I & II are all done and I’m about halfway through my last class, microbiology!

  • Start nursing school: TBD

I’m officially in to start this fall! Woohoo!!!

  • Get better at WordPress and blogging in general: B

As I’m sure you’ve noticed, the blog has been put on the back-burner due to classwork. Since I wasn’t doing much with it the second half of the year, I’m not going to worry too much about this one. I seriously don’t know how I managed to write three times a week last winter and spring without losing my mind!

blog banner

This could use some jazzing up

  • As time allows, get personal training and/or nutritionist certification: TBD

I obviously didn’t have the time to do this last year. Classwork was my first priority

Health and Wellness:

  • Try a new physical endeavor as my body continues to heal from all of the injuries last year: B+

I didn’t get as far as I hoped given my never-ending tennis elbow saga (which, knock on wood, is still going well!) combined with the nagging plantar fasciitis (again, knock on wood, going well!). However, I did branch out from my regular Jillian Michaels love affair to include barre3 and more yoga than I had previously. I even felt confident enough in my elbow to get back to some kettlebell workouts last month! More on this subject in another post.

Stadium running

First time working out at a local stadium this year

  • Work on reducing exposure to pesticides, hormones, chemicals, and other toxins: A

Though we already had a low-chemical lifestyle, I wanted to do more. I tried hard this past year to find affordable, yet effective replacements for our everyday items. The majority of my beauty routine, which is minimal anyway, is now “green” or chemical free (I use EWG’s “Skin Deep” database to double-check all beauty/hair/body items). We concentrated on buying more of our regular items organic, meat being the biggest, and most expensive change. We also frequented more farmers’ markets.

Finally, the end! A recap of January through May:
January: C
February: B-
March: B+
April: B+
May: B+

And the final for this review: B+

Yay! I will take that! I bit off a bit more than I could chew given everything going on and trying to maintain my sanity at the same time, so I am very happy with that!

Questions: Did you make any resolutions or goals last year? How did you do with them? Did you hold yourself accountable at the end of the year?

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7 thoughts on “2014 New Year’s Goals Check-In

  1. Great work! My resolutions were a mixed bag but I’m not really holding myself accountable. I’m celebrating the successes and trying for further improvement in 2015.

    • Hey Nora! That’s a great way of looking at it. A healthy way that encourages you to move forward while feeling accomplishment for what you’ve done. Here’s hoping 2015 is another great one for you!

  2. Hi Stephanie,
    Love your Blog.
    Sounds like you have acomplished a lot for 2014, ( Congrads ) you certainly have high expectations for yourself, ( which I admire ).

    We have been doing much purging our selfs, which is Great! . . . For us.
    The shoulder is 100% now, ,,,Yes!
    And, I’m trying to go without-dairy, so far, I haven’t really noticed very much change in two weeks, I’ll keep you posted.
    Also, I was able to start doing some advising/coaching online for people that are just starting out, or continuing there work-outs and nutritional health. It’s fun helping people out.

    Great to hear your progress Stephanie.
    Good Health,

    Tune up stay strong,
    Uncle Steve,

    • Thanks, Uncle Steve! So glad your shoulder is back to 100%! My mom goes in for surgery on hers on Tuesday and she’s really nervous, but I keep reminding her it’s for the better. It will stink in the short term, but she’ll be happy in the long term.
      Yes, I’m sure it was hard merging two households! You’re bound to have a lot of stuff, and a lot of doubles. Just a little bit at a time feels great.
      I’ve been thinking about going light on the dairy myself. A friend of mine said it’s helped her eczema a lot, so it may be worth it. How long are you going to give the dairy-free diet to see some effects?
      That’s great you’re coaching some people! How did you get “clients” (can’t think of a better word)? Word of mouth? Are you just doing it via email? I’d love to hear about it!

      • Hi Stephanie, Wow Tuesday, she will be fine, mine took 40-45 mins. Pain was not bad at all. Just tell her to stay ahead of the pain, such as , dose , take 2 every 6 hours, I was told to wake up every 2 and a half too 3 hours an take your dose, don’t try to wait every 6 hours then take ur dose,
        I did that for the first 4 days….. Then I would try to wait out the pain. For me it was not that bad. Sleeping however, was a whole different thing, I can’t sleep on my back, so a recliner was the saving grace. After the 5th day, on my side with pillows proping up my arm in bed. ( that was Key). Tell her good luck for me, : >
        As for the dairy , not really sure, but at least 3 months if not 6. …….Well we’ll just say as long as I can stand it. Ha!

        And the training thing, yea, just word of mouth. No money. I don’t really care about that now, I just love helping. I help a few people at the Gym, mostly with body-part training sequence, an form. Surprising amount of people that don’t do exercises correctly, or poor form, and a LOT lack intensity. I guess I’m pretty intense in the gym, but I like to call it Focused. 😎

        Enough……..
        Tune up stay strong.
        Uncle Steve

      • I’ll let her know! Thanks for the insight. She’s borrowing a recliner at the doctor’s suggestion.
        Oh, man, I know! I see people with awful form all the time. I know if I were doing something wrong I would want someone to tell me. Or my big pet peeve–people ramping up the incline and speed on the treadmill and then holding on for dear life. Good luck with the coaching!

  3. […] there! I know it may seem a bit late to be posting my goals only now, but I wanted to review last year’s and have time to really think about what I wanted to accomplish this year following the craziness […]

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