Sunday, January 5, 2014

New Year, New Resolutions

I'm joining the millions in making New Year's resolutions.  But unlike the majority of the millions, I hope to make my resolutions part of my daily life and have outlined a few baby steps to help.  Drum roll, please!
  1. Eat healthier.
    • 1 fruit and 1 vegetable with lunch and supper.
    • Eat at the dining room table.
  2. Plan weekly menus.
    • Assign days of the weeks a category (crock pot, soup, sandwiches, left-overs, etc)
    • Pre-make dishes on Sundays.
    • Thaw necessary meats.
  3. Get in shape.
    • 10 minute yoga DVD 4 nights each week.
    • Family walks when the weather is nice.
      4.  Drink 6 glasses of water each day.

      5. Cut expenses and funnel money to pay off student loan debt.
    • Cancel cable.
    • Shop at Save-A-Lot and Fareway sales
      • Plan menus based on sale items.
        6.   Be a more pleasant and positive person.

A lot of these resolutions are aimed at making me a healthier person.  This was no accident.  I want to be healthier and stronger.  Lately we've fallen into the lazy trap while making supper.  We would make a menu but fail to thaw the meat for the majority of our meals.  This caused us to fall back on eating mac and cheese and pizza way more than I care to.  The reality is I don't have the necessary energy for my life when I'm eating something with no nutritional value.  I also want to feed Katherine more nutritious meals with a variety of foods.  I don't want her to constantly be eating the same bland nutrition-less foods.  I plan to accomplish this by having one fruit and one vegetable with lunch and dinner.  Hopefully we can get some variety in those so we're not eating the same thing constantly.  I also want us to stop eating in front of the TV.  We have a beautiful dining room table.  It serves as a landing area for all sorts of things.  No more.  We need to sit at the table, pray before our meals and actually talk about our day instead of zoning out in front of the TV.

I also want to get better about planning and implementing our weekly menus.  I've put a lot of thought into what hasn't worked for us with our menus and what will work.  Each day is being assigned a category and we'll pick meals that fit that category.  This should make it easier to plan our meals.  I also want to do any prep work for our meals on Sunday.  I want to be able to come home and make supper quickly.  Sunday will be spent cooking chicken, browning ground beef, chopping veggies and putting together the crock pot meals.  And lastly, we need to remember to thaw out the meat needed for our meals!

This year I really want to get in shape.  I don't want to talk about getting in shape anymore.  I actually want to do it.  I'm not a huge fan of going to the gym and going to a gym would be hard to fit into my schedule.  Instead I plan to exercise 4 nights each week.  I have a yoga DVD with 10 minute work-out each focusing on a different section of the body and another fitness DVD with 10 minute work-outs.  This should fit perfectly into my evening.  Ten minutes is very doable.  There is no excuse to not do 10 minutes of exercise 4 days a week.  I also want to ask my faithful readers to give me some gentle encouragement on this.  But please don't nag me.  When the weather is nice again, Steve and I plan to start going for our family walks again.

I was really good about drinking water when I was pregnant with Katherine.  (Partly because it reduced some of the swelling from my preeclampsia.)  But within the past 16 months after she was born, I've gotten really bad at it.  There are some days I only drink a glass or 2.  There is no way this keeps my energy level up.  I want to drink 6 glasses of water everyday.  This shouldn't be hard considering the water bottle at my desk holds 24 ounces of water.  If I drink 2 of those at work, I've already met my goal.  Eventually I would like to drink 8 glasses each day but I want to set goals I can reach and then adjust them as needed.  Another bonus of increasing my water: the more water I drink, the less pop I drink and that can only be a good thing.

Steve and I want to get serious about paying off my student loan debt.  We have made such progress and I'm so proud of us.  We still have a little bit more to pay off and I really want to be done with student loans!  After my loans are paid off, we can funnel the money into more important things like repairs around the house, saving for retirement, saving for Katherine's Catholic school education and maybe vacations.  To be able to funnel money to the student loan debt, we plan to do a few things differently.  First we're going to cancel cable.  We watch too much TV as it is and most of our shows can be watched online the next day.  We plan to funnel the savings from not having cable into my student loans.  (I'm also hoping we'll get more done around the house without the distraction of TV.)  We're also going to plan our meals around the sales at Fareway and also shop at Save-A-Lot.  Hopefully this will free up more money in our budget to throw at student loans.

And lastly I want to be a more pleasant and positive person in 2014.  I've become a bit of a brat in 2013.  I really don't want to be known as a brat so I'm choosing to bite my tongue, remind myself to think positive thoughts and try to go with the flow.

Those are my resolutions.  Hopefully I've set myself up for success!