Goals, Monthly Recap

Are These Goals Even Possible?! {January 2022 Goals}

After having a slow, (mostly) restful last week of the year, we’re ready to hit the ground running in the new year! We have a ton of stuff that needs to happen this month — largely with the flower farm — which I’m actually pretty excited about because I think that keeping busy will help me to stave off the January blues that seem to hit me most years.

December was a lot of fun. For me, it was the perfect blend between fun events and parties and places to be and time to rest and relax and just putter around the house. And even between all the festivities and the down time, we still managed to get a decent amount done. Here’s how December looked:

Note: There are affiliate links to products and books mentioned below.

December Goals

  • Send out special email series to email list subscribers
    • After long neglecting my email list, I decided to do something I’ve never done before and offer a special, more spiritually toned email series in order to invite anyone interested (as well as myself!) to slow down and ponder on the reason for the season more. I ended up doing a series of 12 emails breaking down the lyrics to one of my favorite hymns — More Holiness Give Me — and using those as a springboard for each email’s “theme.” It was a ton of work, but I loved the way it allowed me to more personally connect with many of you, plus it was just a good way to make sure that I was slowing down myself and pondering on the spiritual significance of the holiday. Even though the season is over, you can still sign up for the special Christmas emails by clicking HERE. And if you’d like to sign up for the email list in general (where I share goal-setting inspo and book lists) — but not get the more spiritual ones — you can click HERE.
  • Celebrate Hyrum’s birthday
    • The baby turned TWO last month, and all three of our kids were in heaven since both sets of grandparents who live close enough to come joined us for the festivities.
  • Take puppy in for his final vaccinations
    • We actually had to take him in twice to complete this (one of which was technically at the beginning of this month), but we’re finally finished!
Hyrum giving himself a Voldemort nose
  • Fix leak in master bathroom
    • It took me awhile to even get a hold of a plumber, but I finally had one call me back. They were pretty booked out, but this *should* be fixed in January.
  • Finish editing final photo shoot
    • Nope. Rollover goal.
  • Schedule a home energy consultation
    • I not only scheduled this, but also already had it! I basically wanted to figure out why our gas bill is so high when we keep our house at 63-65 degrees throughout the winter. While it wasn’t just one huge thing, it was a lot of little things that seemed to be funneling the cost up, such as not regularly replacing our furnace filter, the lack of insulation in our attic and floors, and all the little air leaks in our doors and windows (our house is over 100 years old, so it makes sense). While we won’t be able to add attic or floor insulation for awhile, we did already implement some of the smaller fixes, and we have big plans this year to do some more expensive energy fixes in the house, so stay tuned.
  • Move gas fireplace back to family room
    • We took advantage of having people over for Hyrum’s birthday to get this one done. The fireplace still isn’t actually hooked into the wall, but at least there’s not an awkward hole there anymore.
  • Transfer water shares over to our name
    • We finally figured this out and got it done, and the best part of it was that I made a contact with someone who can get me truckloads of compost from their farm for a STEAL.
  • Order bare root roses and first of the seeds for the flower farm next year
    • I looooooove buying seeds and plants, so you’d better believe this got done, and very happily, too! I cannot wait for this next growing season!!!
  • Visit a chiropractor or massage therapist
    • It took me a long, LONG time to be able to get an appointment with my old massage therapist, but my sister actually had an appointment the last week of the month with him that she was willing to let me have. And good thing too, because I tweaked my back (yet again) in November while trying to get back into exercising (the story of my life over here), so I really needed it. Now that I’m on his schedule, he should be able to get me in once a month for the foreseeable future. Even though it’s a 4-hour drive round-trip (plus the cost of the massage), it will be worth it if it will mean I can finally exercise again.
Taking advantage of the weirdly warm weather at the beginning of the month
  • Get everyone in the family a haircut (3/5)
    • We bought this highly recommended at-home haircutting kit a few months ago, but had never used it. After my split ends were the worst they’d ever been in my life, I finally just had Matt bluntly cut my hair across, and I did a few face-framing layers in the front. It’s definitely not a great haircut, but it works for now. Matt also gave both the boys haircuts. Now I just need to give Raven’s hair a trim and work up the nerve to try and cut Matt’s myself…
  • Make new quiet books for church for each kid
    • Every Sunday in church, I’m reminded of how much this needs to happen, but I keep putting it off. Rollover goal.
  • Pick up 5-gallon buckets for food storage
    • My mom brought me the buckets when she drove down for Hyrum’s birthday. Now we just need to fill them (especially since I’ve even ordered the special oxygen packets and everything).
We were totally shocked by how he actually wanted to sit on Santa’s lap
  • Finish 5 books
  • Take at least a week off of social media
    • I basically did this, though the week wasn’t all at once. About a week before Christmas, I deleted the Instagram and Facebook apps off my phone, which took away most of the temptation of hopping on “just to check.” I did have a few days I got on Facebook because I was pulling together some donations for some refugees from Afghanistan who are coming to live close by us, so I did need to check those posts. But by and large, I stayed off (and am still staying off most of the time), and I loved how it just made it that much easier to stay present and to focus on my family.
  • Enjoy Christmas!
    • Did we ever! Christmas with young kids is the BEST — they are excited about literally everything you put the tiniest bit of extra effort and thought into, and we crammed a lot of wonderful family memories into December.
  • List Buick
    • One day, I will cross this off. That day has not yet come.

Other Notable Achievements Not Listed Above:

  • We painted our master closet
    • It’s kind of shocking that we were able to get to this, actually — after being so burned out of house projects, any more painting had fallen way down the priority list. However, when Matt unexpectedly had most of the last week in December off thanks to a generous boss, we threw around ideas of what we wanted to get done and decided to just tackle this now since we already had all the supplies on hands (unlike the baseboards project, which will require quite a bit more money). The fresh white paint color makes a huge difference in the closet, which often looked dingy before because of the weird beige color it was painted. Since the project also required that we take everything OUT of the closet first, it’s also been a good excuse to declutter and actually organize it, considering that we basically just dumped everything in there upon moving in. We still don’t have everything put back, but I’m already liking how it looks a lot more.
  • We were able to participate in gathering money and supplies for several Afghan refugees
    • Thanks to my work at the newspaper, I heard about a local couple who is sponsoring several refugee families soon in their home and who needed supplies. I reached out to see how we could help, and our family was able to collect some cash and buy supplies in order to help out. It was a great thing to do together as a family!
  • I got (most of) the flower farm all planned out for next year
    • Normally January is the time I would do a lot of the planning, but I was eager (and maybe a little desperate) to figure out how on earth I was going to find places to plant all the different seeds I’ve ordered. I’ve mostly figured out the general plan, but I do need to sit down with all my seed packets and make sure I haven’t forgotten anything important.
  • I started teaching piano to Raven
    • I wanted to start teaching piano to Raven when we started homeschooling, but at the time, I felt too overwhelmed by homeschooling in general to add one more thing to the list. Now that we’re no longer homeschooling, I finally felt like I had the mental headspace and energy to do this. So far, so good!

January Goals

Last year, I didn’t officially decide to pursue flower farming until late February, which means I couldn’t really get started on much of anything to do with that until the beginning of March. This year we’re expanding operations and putting a lot more infrastructure in place, which means my winter “break” is largely over!

The biggest change we’re making to the farm — besides adding in a lot more square footage in the form of both raised beds and in-ground beds — is that we’re building a high tunnel, which is basically just an unheated greenhouse. This structure will allow me to start some special spring plantings as early as the beginning of February, and I have high hopes that it will pay for itself in a few months since the flowers we’re planning on growing in it are all high value crops that can be sold for a really good price (as long as I can find an interested buyer). Of course, I’m also nervous that this first attempt at hoophouse growing will be a colossal failure, but I’m staying optimistic and am counting on at least half of what I plant in it being successful!

Here are the official plans for January:

Christmas morning
  • Set up high tunnel
    • Although this is just listed as one line item, make no mistake — this is a HUGE project. I have no idea if we’ll actually be able to even finish this in a month, but it is our #1 priority for January, so fingers crossed!
  • Start all the slow-growing seeds
    • Like I mentioned, I didn’t start any of my seeds until March 1st last year, which meant I had some painful periods in June when I didn’t have nearly enough flowers to fulfill my bouquet subscriptions. I’ve done several things to avoid a repeat of that nightmare, and another strategy is starting some of the slower-growing seeds (especially hardy annuals that can handle some cold like snapdragons) super early this year, which I’m hoping will translate to them transplanting better (since the plants will be bigger) and also producing sooner.
  • Soak and pre-sprout the first wave of ranunculuses
    • This is the biggest crop we’re planning on doing in the high tunnel this year, and I’m planning to plant them out in early February in the high tunnel if weather permits (and obviously if the structure is done). I am doing 3 or 4 successions of ranunculus, just to space out the plants across several weeks and also to take note of when they perform best. Anyway, ranunculuses and anemones are both corms that do better if you soak them first and then put them in some damp soil inside for a couple weeks before planting them out, so I’ll be doing that sometime in the middle of the month most likely.
finally getting to meet their new niece
  • Pick up load of compost
    • As I mentioned above, I made an awesome contact last month at the water share office, and since we’re planning on borrowing my in-laws’ truck for a couple weeks, we want to make sure to pick up a big load or two of the compost from the woman I met who will give it to me for almost nothing.
  • Finalize flower farm plan + seed starting schedule
    • Like I said, I’ve got a pretty good idea already, but I need to actually sit down with all of my seed packets and make sure everything has a place. (And if not, I need to decide where we’re putting in more beds, ha ha)
  • Make a trip to the donation center
    • Between the master closet refresh and going through all the unused Christmas decorations, we have a decent amount of stuff to donate again. Time to make a trip to our favorite burger place, I mean, to the donation center! (Our favorite restaurant is right behind the thrift store…conveniently :))
  • Organize master closet
    • We’ve moved about half the stuff back in (and organized it)–now we just need to finish the job.
  • Fix leak in master bathroom
    • This should be happening this month, as we are officially “on the list” of one of the local plumbers I was finally able to get a hold of.
  • Fill 5-gallon buckets with long-term food storage
    • This really shouldn’t take that long, but that doesn’t mean we haven’t been procrastinating it like crazy! Definitely need to just dedicate an evening to just knock this out already.
  • Register Mazda
    • Because I might forget if I don’t put it on here.
  • Organize + prep for taxes
    • Although I’ve had to deal with self-employment taxes for years thanks to my photography business, can I just say what a NIGHTMARE it’s going to be to file for the farm?! Total insanity. I almost had a stress meltdown the other week as I was looking into it. I’m hoping to do a lot of the heavy prep work this month so that come February, when we have all the necessary documents from everywhere, we can just plug them in and be done early.
  • Give Matt and Raven haircuts
    • Rollover goal. Also, this is slightly terrifying for me.
  • Finish editing final photo shoot
    • Rollover goal.
  • Make new quiet books for church
    • Rollover goal.
  • List Buick
    • Will 2022 finally be the year?!

January, let’s do this!!! What kinds of goals do you have for this upcoming month/year? Any resolutions?