The Year in Review & Goals


2015 is over.  I’m mostly glad. It’s not that 2015 was terrible;  I’m just ready to move on.  There are a lot of changes already on the horizon for 2016, and I’m looking forward to seeing where this takes me.

As a family, we had some exciting moments.  I attended the Douglas County Apple Awards as my school’s representative.  We took our 2nd trip to Disneyland over Spring Break. My sister-in-law had her first baby. Jedidiah competed on Jeopardy!  Disney released Episode VII.  The Royals won the World Series.   We had a lot of excitement, but I’m ready for some changes.

People keep asking:  “What’s your resolution for 2016?”  I hate that word.  It’s become synonymous with  broken promises and unachieved dreams.  Instead of thinking in terms of resolutions, I’ve begun thinking in terms of goals instead of resolutions for 2016.

I’ve also learned for goals to really work, they have to be SMART goals.  I first learned this term in the business world, but after two years of teaching, I started seeing this infiltrate education as well.  SMART goals are goals that are SPECIFIC, MEASURABLE, ACHIEVABLE, REALISTIC, and TIME-BOUND.  Sounds boring, right? But I’ve based my SMART goals on Neil Gaiman’s often-shared New Year’s wish from 2001:

May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you’re wonderful, and don’t forget to make some art — write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year, you surprise yourself.

– See more at:

If you don’t read his New Year’s wishes, you should.

So I’ve devised my goals into these categories:

  1. Magic and Dreams: It is a dream of mine to lose weight.  Sounds silly or predictable…but I haven’t lost all the weight I gained with Max five years ago!  I often start diets, but peter out once my spring semester takes over my life.  I have lost a few pounds here or there, but I find that I haven’t really set a goal around this.  So here it is:  I will lose 25 pounds by Memorial Day.  I will track this through the Weight Watchers app each week.  I will track my food daily.   I know I will feel better and be happier.
  2. Good madness:  I’ve taught the same material in my freshman class for the past few years. Like other teachers, I can fall into a rut of doing the same activities especially if time is becoming my enemy. This year, I will take one risk in the classroom–try something new–once per month.  I will track this through my blog as well as my Bloomboard app.
  3. Books:  Reading goals.  My husband sets them.  My friends set them.  I never had.  It’s all I do, really.  Read.  However, I am usually reading for school, not for myself.  This year, I will read 6 personal selections.  These are books I choose for myself.  I will track this through my blog.
  4. Kisses:  This might be TMI, but I do neglect to spend time with my husband especially during the school year.  This year, one night/ week, I will not plan, grade, or answer emails after I leave school.  Instead, I will come home, eat dinner,  put the children to bed, and spend one-on-one time with my husband. I will track this in my planning calendar.
  5. Art:  I have wanted to make something of this blog, and although what that “something” is has not fully formed in my mind, I have neglected to follow through with posting as often as I would like.  For me, writing a blog takes inspiration and time.  Even with those, my posts don’t always take the shape I wish they would.  However, I am done with these excuses.  I will post at least once per week whether it is long, deep, and inspired or just a  blurb about the day.  I will track this through my WordPress dashboard and the blogging calendar I bought months ago, but never opened.

So here’s to a New Year.  To magic, dreams, and good madness.  To books, kisses, and art.  How will you live out this New Year’s wish?

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