Happy February, everyone! I can’t believe we’re already in the second month of 2017. At the beginning of the year, I set some pretty good goals both for my life and for the blog that I’m really excited about achieving. In order to hold myself accountable, I’m going to check in each month with how/what I did to accomplish them, as well as a plan of smaller goals for the following month to continue using/accomplishing them.
1. Focus more on experiences and less on material things. For this goal, I simply want to get out and do more things so as to make this a habit for the little one on the way. I want him to experience the city in ways that will instill in him a love of community and adventure. He won’t be here until March/April but I figure if we start focusing on experiences now, it will come naturally when he gets here.
–Unfortunately, we didn’t do much in January that focused on experiences. We attended several baby showers (two of which were our own and one was for our dear friends who are due around the same time as me), and I had some job interviews so we’ve been pretty busy.
–I’ve signed up to recieve emails about events happening in and around my town from Get Offline, a company that curates experiences in your city for you to “keep your free time exciting.” I’m hoping that constantly seeing all of the fun things going on around me will remind and motivate me to get out and do more fun things!
–Visit the farmers’ market at least twice during the month, but ideally more if possible
–Have a fun Galentine’s and/or Valentine’s outing
–Try our hand at a DIY maternity photo shoot (I’m really excited about this one!)
2. Focus on my health and learning as much as I can about the rest of my pregnancy, labor & deliver, and being a good mother. Being and staying healthy, as well as being prepared for what is coming in the next few months and beyond, is really important to me.
–We attended a childbirth class and took a tour of the labor & delivery unit of our hospital. I made sure to ask as many questions as I could to understand the processes.
–To focus on my health, I’ve started taking Mia on longer walks. Normally, she gets two to three 15-minute walks per day to do her business but since walking is good for both of us, I’ve tried to incorporate longer walks any time the weather is nice (e.g. sunny, not too cold, not raining, etc.)
–Prenatal yoga at least 3 times a week, with a focus on meditation and relaxation (to help me prepare for labor & delivery)
–Practice some breathing and relaxation techniques at least 3 times a week (also to help me prepare for L&D)
–More long walks with Mia as the weather permits
3. Read more books. For now, I’m sticking to my initial goal of one book per month, at least until the baby gets here when I might lower the number to 6 new books within the year.
–I finished Scrappy Little Nobody by Anna Kendrick. It’s been one of the best celebrity autobiographies I’ve read so far. I was interested in it because I always thought she seems really cool and fun in real life and from what I’ve read, it does sound like she’s really cool and fun in real life, but she’s not without her hangups, which makes her feel all the more real to me. I would definitely recommend it.
Note: I’m continuing to choose and read books related to pregnancy, childbirth, parenting, etc. but I’m not including them in this goal.
–The next book on the list is Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson. I only intermittently read her blog but I did read her first book and I loved it. I can’t wait to read this one.
4. Write more letters/send more cards to my friends and family.
–Not so good with the progress on this one. With all that’s been going on, I haven’t had much time to think about letters and cards. I didn’t even send a birthday card this month because the one family birthday we had, we were able to have lunch with them so I gave them their card in person. I supposed that still counts, right?
–I did write and mail out some thank you cards from my first baby shower at the end of the month, so that counts, too!
–Continue to consult my calendar to send birthday cards
–Thank you notes for my second baby shower by the end of the month
–Choose at least two people to write a handwritten letter to by the end of the month
5. Write more content. I used to write a lot. Somewhere along the line I stopped writing for fun and I want to get that back. So, along with journaling more and writing more stories for myself, I will focus on creating some original and fun content for the blog.
–I’ve included a few new features that aren’t just outfit related (e.g., NCsquared Conversations, my mini house tour post) so I think I’ve gotten a good start. I would still like to incorporate some of my personal views on things, but I have to figure out how to do that in a peaceful and non-divisive way.
–At least 3 Fashion Flashback posts where I compare my style over the past few years. It’s style related but at least I can incorporate some thoughts.
–Writing more stories about my childhood and incorporating more humor into the blog
6. Post more often. Writing more content should lead to posting more often. I’m still aiming for 3-4 posts per week.
–I’ve gotten off to a good start with posting at least three time a week
–Post at least three time per week
–Spend more time on the weekends planning and writing,
–Maybe even try to take photos in the morning when I first get dressed instead of waiting until the evening (when it’s much less likely to happen) or the weekend
7. Take better pictures. This year, I resolve to comprehend more about lighting, ISO, aperture, exposure, focus, how to take advantage of the features on my camera, as well as better editing so that my photos look better are more appealing.
–I read a few tutorials on how to improve my Instagram photos. That’s a start.
–Read as much as I can about lighting and aperture speed to figure out the f stop feature so I can take my camera off of its automatic mode!
8. Grow my readership. I would like to create content that is fun and engaging for a lot of people and, therefore, gain more readers.
–I’ll admit I haven’t done much this month to grow my readership. I did start a Facebook Page for the blog and have done a decent job of keeping it updated.
–Read at least 2-3 blog posts from other bloggers that give advice on growing your readership and brainstorming how I can incorporate their advice into my blog
–Make a plan to incorporate at least 3 new ideas from these advice posts by the end of the month
–Participate in more link ups
The year is off to a great start. Here’s to hoping I can keep up the momentum, especially after the baby gets here in March!