Jennifer's books

Goodbye, Vitamin
American Fire: Love, Arson, and Life in a Vanishing Land
Mrs. Hemingway
Poetry Will Save Your Life: A Memoir
The Princess Diarist
Watch Me Disappear
Hello, Sunshine
Peak Performance: Elevate Your Game, Avoid Burnout, and Thrive with the New Science of Success
A Man Called Ove
The Heirs
Our Souls at Night
White Fur
Confessions of a Domestic Failure
The Map That Leads to You
The Little French Bistro
Love the Wine You're With
Always and Forever, Lara Jean
Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore
The Party
New Boy

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Thursday, January 3, 2019

My "We'll See If I Do Them" Resolutions for 2019

I have a love/hate relationship with new year's resolutions like most people. There is something great about reflecting on the past year and thinking about what you can do better in the new year. However, there is something not so great about setting yourself up for failure.

That's why this year I am once again making resolutions that I may or may not do - but ones that I hope I do because each one was chosen because I believe it would make things better (my mind, my heart, my body).

In the past, I have made resolutions without a clear way of sticking to them. This year I have identified an area I struggle with and a possible way to address the issue in the new year. If you are like me in this regard, I am telling you what tool I am using to help me stick to my resolutions.

(With the number one resolution being to give myself some grace when I do not do it.)

My Practical Resolutions for 2019

This only relates because of resolutions. I just thought it was funny. 

Take Back the House.

By the end of 2019, we will have an almost 9-year-old and a 5-year-old. 9 years is a long time for my house to feel like a KidZone 24/7. Mom is taking back the house. My plan is to do away with the playroom and convert it into my office/library. We also plan to make our guest room, which is currently the room where everything goes to die, into an actual bonus room with a bed.

In the meantime, I am also going to try to do a better job of making my kids clean up after themselves. We'll see how that goes.

Get Rid of the Garbage.

Confession - My family has a major problem with getting rid of stuff when it needs to be gotten rid of. We are not hoarders (well my husband may be one, but I am not). I have just discovered if you don't stay on top of your stuff, it becomes overwhelming. For example, my kids grow out of clothing and I buy new clothes before I get rid of the old clothes. Then, the old clothes stay in a bag that needs to be donated for weeks (or months). And, don't start with me with the toys.

So, this year I am going to try to stay on top of the garbage. I have used my new label maker to label a clear donation bin. The plan is to keep the donation bin in an obvious spot so that anytime I fold a pair of pants my son has outgrown, I can toss it in the bin. Same with unused toys. As soon as the bin is full, I will make a trip to Goodwill (or a similar donation site).

Stop Sitting So Much.

It became very clear to me by the end of 2018 that I sit. all. day. long. I work from home on the computer, and there are days when I walk from my computer to my car for car pick up, then sit back in a chair for lunch, and I work some more. Then, my husband comes home and we sit on the couch until we go to bed.

So, I have enabled a break reminder app on my computer that sends me an alert when I have been sitting for an hour so I can stand up and move. Additionally, I purchased a cheap, small (pink) stair/stepper machine to use when I get these alerts.

Read Less Psychological Thrillers.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with psychological thrillers. But, after a year of reading more of them than I usually do, I have decided that they are just not my favorite things to read. I read well over 100 books this year, and there is only 1 thriller that I truly enjoyed and recommend. So, unless it is a book that someone I trust tells me is totally-incredible-and-you-have-read-it-right-away, I'm giving psychological thrillers a hard pass.

*To be fair, I still plan to read the few I have already been given for review purposes. But, after those, I'm done.

Unplug Regularly.

I have a phone problem. And, I know I'm not alone as the average person checks their cell phone over 100 times a day. I don't like that about myself. I need to do better and I can do better. However, it is a habit I am going to have to work to break.

So, I have installed the Screen Time app to help me monitor my screen time. Just seeing the HOURS I wasted on my phone has been convicting enough. However, the app also allows you to schedule downtime and set app limits.

Love God. Love Others.

I can always do better with this one, so it is always one of my resolutions. To get in the right head and heart space, I am going to be reading Unshakeable by Christine Caine. I also plan to read through the New Testament this year following the Discipleship Journal's 5x5x5 plan. The plan is set up to read one chapter a day (5 minutes a day for 5 days a week).

I hope to love others beginning at home and spreading outward to my neighbors and community. I hope to find actual ways to serve those around me. So, this morning I spent time ordering books for the little free library when I realized there is a big chunk of the neighborhood my library is missing - mainly diverse books and books for teen boys. It's a small thing, but it is one small thing I can do to make a difference.

What do you plan to do this year to try to make your resolutions stick? Let me know in the comments!

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