Saturday, December 28, 2013

Reflecting on 2013

     It always amazes how fast a year can go by! I have found that I am a reflector...I like to look back and reflect on what happened in the past year, how it affected me, what lesson I learned from different events, and what knowledge can I take with me. 

     I have always kept a journal, something I think I get from my Mom. I have recently gone back and read some of them as I have been trying to make some decisions in my life. It really helps to see what you thought was a trying situation and how you handled it, what part God played, the lessons that you learned along the way. They say that, "Hindsight is 20/20," so looking back and reflecting makes sense. Now I'm not talking about dwelling...that's a whole other post I'm sure. We shouldn't dwell on, "What could have beens," and "What should have beens." No, I think it's important to learn from the past but use it to move on. Sometimes reading about your past can really help you to see trends in things that you struggle with, things that make you stumble in your walk with God, and can also really build your faith. 

     Recently, during a chat with a friend, we talked about how my journaling evolved into blogging and she encouraged me to share some of my journal entries in my blog...I may do that some in the coming year. But I think it's important to understand the differences between blogging and personal journaling. I think that there needs to be a boundary that one keeps. 

    One thing that I do like about the use of blogging to reflect is that I can do it visually (which I'm a visually learner so makes sense). I love to do a post that shows my year in words and images. (That's what this post started as...not really sure where the "intro" came from  haha!)

     So, 2013 started with a list... (yeah, I'm a list maker)

I have to say that I'm pretty proud of myself and my ability to do the items on my list. Of course it wasn't a very large list...but I think I was going for my quality over quantity.

#1 To Display God's Love in my life:
Now I'm not sure how well I did with this one??...I hope I did ok. But I guess God and others would be better at answering this one.

#2 Be Healthy 
I was really happy to see myself a lot healthier in 2013. 
I was able to get off of all of my medications (was taking meds for migraines,  and for stress). 
I started working out and going to the gym. 
I made some really good eating changes (I cut back on my coffee intake, got away from artificial sweetners in my coffee, and started eating a lot healthier).
I reduced my stress level at work and learned that I needed to be able to say No... and to not worry about it once I wasn't involved. 
I also found out that if I worked out (meaning spent time on the bike and treadmill) that it really helped with my migraines and stress. I guess that whole endorphins thing Elle talked about was true!

#3 Reduce Stress, Learn to say No:
This one was a little harder for me and took some work. I went into what I knew was going to be a rough school year (Fall 2013) with a motto to help me deal with all the changes I knew where coming. 
Well I had two mottos really 
"It's No Big Deal"
became my daily mantra going into what I think was my craziest school semester. We started the new school year in one place and 3 weeks in we packed up a whole school and moved to our new school. Yep, right in the middle of teaching, starting a class of new students on a daily routine (this is always must for classroom management), creating SLT's, trying to implement common core, mentoring new teachers, and trying to get a grip on new policies I was boxing up 5 years of teaching stuff and an Art room. Then there was the endless changes, disorganization, and problems that come with moving and change. I had a lot of prayer and reminding myself of the above motto. 
I also stepped down from some organizations that I had been previously involved in, and thus the next motto was adopted

It seems that #4,  5, and 6 all kind-of go together.

#4 Reduce Spending:
I always struggle with this one! I did do much better...but as always I have a lot of growth left in this one.

#5 Pay Off Debt:
I did this...not as much as I wanted but I made some headway!
I paid off my car 3 months early!

#6 More self-control: some areas I did ok but in others...lets just say it's a work in progress. 


Brought a lot of changes.

My new classroom is amazing!

Was a time of healthy eating and creativity

We welcomed in Fall and had a fun month

Got to hang out with the family

My favorite time of the Year!!

Wow what a year!!!
I'm so blessed!

(This post only took me retyping it 3 times!! 3 times it lost all of my pictures and that is why it is a pieced up mess haha!!!)

~Till Next Time

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