December 31, 2015

Looking Back at 2015

A Year in Review

2015 has been a fabulous year. Of course, it wasn't without it's ups or downs, but whose life isn't? Myself and my family went through a lot of changes this year, and sometimes I forget that these things happened in just this past year alone. The biggest change was our move to Calgary beginning in February. But things didn't go as planned, and after living in two different temporary accommodations, Sully and I went back to Edmonton to live in our house there until it sold. It was the first time Jim and I had ever spent so much time apart, and while it was tough at the time, it was worth it in the end.

Because with that move, I was introduced to the world of Southern Alberta Bloggers, and little did I know at the time, that some of those girls would become really good friends of mine. I'd even go as far as to call them my tribe. They are supportive, insightful, inspiring, and fun! I signed up to run my first race of the year - a 10K! - and I truly feel like that race was the beginning of it all. I continued to meet new people, continued running, and pushed myself physically more than I ever had before. It's weird, and non-blogging people might not get it, but it's hard not to wonder how much lonelier my life would be here if I hadn't met these women.

A Year in Review

2015 also brought some fun travel. In May, I went to New York City with my best friend (kid-free!!), and we spent a week together there, exploring a place I can't wait to return to. My sister visited me for a week in August, and we ran our very first race together (the Spartan Sprint). I travelled to Wateron, Alberta, in September as part of a blogger retreat with some of the most inspiring and amazing women I know, and in November, I spent two weeks in Florida with my family and in-laws.

A Year in Review

We also celebrated Sully's first birthday, watched him learn to walk and talk, experienced the Calgary Stampede for the first time ever and visited Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump. We took mini road trips to Edmonton to see my mom, to meet friends at Kraay Family Farm, and went to the zoo several times. We explored our new city, went on hikes, and lots of bike rides.

A Year in Review

2015, you were alright.

I've been reading a bunch of my favourite blogger's 2015 goal recap posts and the whole time I was thinking to myself, I wish I had posted my goals for the year. Well I can wish no more, because it turns out I did in fact publish my goals for this past year. How's that for mommy brain?

I've said it before, and I'll say it again here: I love making goals (I no longer use the word resolution because that sounds too definite and a good chance for failing), but goals I can get behind. To me, it means you are going to make a conscious effort to work on a few, or several aspects and areas of your life. With goals, it's not black or white: no I MUST accomplish this, I MUST get better at that. Instead, I'm saying, this is what I want to work on in order to be a better, happier, healthier version of myself. Less room for failure, more room for growth. All growth is good, and sometimes, certain things take longer to learn or even master…like learning to be kind to oneself. Learning patience. Becoming a faster runner. Becoming a better cook. Etc, etc. We never stop growing, just like we can never stop learning.

A Year in Review

It's far too easy to get caught up in the busyness of day to day life, and I'm finding now, that as I get older, time is passing much too quickly for my liking. Which means not only do days just fly by, but so do weeks and months. This is why I think it's important to not only make new goals, but to reflect on your past goals. Were they good goals in the first place? Were they even achievable? Why did I make 'x, y, z' a goal in the first place? Do I still have some work to do on said goal? Do I want to continue with a particular goal or are there other areas of my life I want to focus on?

I'm very excited and feeling very passionate about my goals for 2016, but first I want to look at the goals I made for myself at the beginning of 2015.

1. Simplify My Belongings

When I made this goal, I had just finished reading Marie Kondo's book, The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and I was inspired. It also worked out well that we were preparing for our next greatest adventure, our big move from Edmonton to Calgary. Jim and I purged our belongings like it was no body's business (it wasn't - that's such a weird analogy, isn't it?). Anyway, contrary to what the book says about how people rarely regret things they get rid of, I would have to say that we may have gone over board on a few things. We got rid of things that we have wished during the year that we had held on to. Like fishing poles, old camping chairs, extra extension cords - things that seemed needless at the time, but have found ourselves wanting throughout the year, but don't necessarily want to spend money on again. But such is life. I did purge about 75% of my closet, and I would honestly get rid or more of it if I didn't actually have to get dressed in the morning. While I'm starting to feel like my home is becoming cluttered again, I think we did a great job at executing this goal this year.

2. Buy Only Things That Spark Joy in Me

This goes hand in hand with the book mentioned above. No sense in purging if you are only going to continue bringing useless crap into your home. I don't feel as good about this one. I definitely made impulse purchases and have purchased clothing that I don't love, but needed to dress a body shape that I'm hoping I don't have forever.

3. Make a Smoothie Everyday

I definitely didn't make a smoothie every single day, but our vitamix is without a doubt, the number one used appliance in our kitchen next to my coffee machine. The beginning of the year started out on a stronger note with smoothie making, and I definitely notice a difference in my energy levels and digestion when I go long periods without having a smoothie. This is something I will for sure want to keep going into the next year.

4. Take 5-10 Minutes to Clean Up the Kitchen Every Night

A clean kitchen in the morning makes me SO happy, yet I wasn't able to execute this goal every night. Sometimes I was too tired, or I told myself I just didn't care, or I knew that the mess would take much longer than 5-10 minutes to clean up. In order to keep my sanity, I will definitely continue to work on this one.

5. Get Outside More

My goal was to get outside for a walk 3 x a week (I become a bit of a house hermit when the cold weather permits). There were definitely months (like in the summer and fall), where I got outside, either with Sully during the day, or by myself in the evenings, but I know there were weeks where it didn't happen as often. I feel like a goal like this needs to be more specific in order for me to be more successful. Or I need to find a way to make regular walks outside a part of my daily life. And no, I'm not getting a dog.

6. Read 20 Books

Done and done! I think I'm at 37 books read this year. If I can power through my current read in the next 24 hours, I'll hit 38. This was a huge improvement from the year before, so I'm happy with this one.

7. Run One 5K and One 10K

At the beginning of the year, when I made this goal, I really had no idea that I would find a love with running again and that because of it, I would meet and make some really awesome friends. I didn't just run one 5K and one 10K. I ran three 5K races, two 10K races, and two obstacle course races (a 5K and a 13+K). I don't like to register for races too far in advance, but I'm looking forward to racing again in 2016!

And that was it. Some of these, or versions of these may end up on my 2016 goals. I also think I will start breaking down my yearly goals into smaller, monthly goals. For one thing, that way I won't completely forget about my goals. And sometimes breaking things down makes it easier to accomplish in the long run. Baby steps. Or maybe it will just make me more aware and more accountable and there is nothing wrong with that!

Do you make goals for yourself? At the beginning of the year, throughout the year, or both?

Do you like specific goals or more broad ones?

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