1. Attend the Temple 8 times
We haven't gone yet but are hoping once we've moved out we'll be able to convince my mom to watch the kids because she'll have actually had a chance to miss them.
2. Make a monthly budget and keep a record of all spending throughout the month
I printed out some spending tracking sheets and we did really well for the first half of the month. Then it got crazy and I was pretty negligent. Starting off on the right foot this month but I know it'll be hard because of all the purchases we'll have to make with moving in to the new house.
3. Be more supportive of others' creative endeavors by subscribing to podcasts, blogs and webcasts. Be involved by commenting and contributing etc.
I think I've done a good job with this one. It's slipped a bit towards the end of the month, again, because things got really busy. But I feel like I'm doing well here. Anyone need some creative support? I mean, I can't actually do anything except be supportive, but I can do that.
4. Make a family photo album
5. Finish transcribing my dad's first journal
I think now that the ward we will be in is at 9am I'll have time after church to work on this, and other family history stuff. I want to get one of those awesome scanners to start getting all our family pictures saved digitally. Let the money rain down.
6. Read President Hinckley's biography
Hopefully I'll start this during summer.
7. Have six lessons (one per month) on baptism for FHE to help prepare Henry
We didn't do one for January because I was counting the '8 is Great' baptism preview as his January one.
8. Buy a house (we're in escrow right now, but until we've moved in, I'm going to hold my breath!)
Done! We should be fully moved in over the weekend. We've just been taking a few loads every day or so with the van and actually have most of our stuff out, we just need the day to day things, and the beds and dressers. It's nice to finally feel excited about it after all the holding off, and waiting during a long escrow because the house was a foreclosure owned by Fannie Mae.
I also want to make a note on the whole buying a house thing. We received help from our parents to make this happen. We've been with my mom the last three years to save, and pay down student loans, and Johann's parents provided the down payment for us. I feel it is important to acknowledge this firstly to say how grateful we are for supportive parents who still continue to sacrifice for us; and secondly because it drove us nuts for a long time when we felt like the only ones our age not buying a house. We thought we must be doing or have done something terribly wrong financially or otherwise. Then we thought, why are we living in California where even in the desert houses are so expensive?! (Answer-because this is where Johann has the most earning power and it's close to family) Then we would find out that in almost every single instance there was financial assistance from family. So we aren't awesome money wizards who have it all together. We could have found a place with a down from the money we had saved after living three years with my mom paying minimal rent and utilities, but it would have been a significantly less nice house in a significantly less nice area because most of our savings went towards paying down loans and then the van when we had Leo is 2014. So we are very thankful Johann's parents offered to help after we had started seriously looking at houses, and applying for loans. It's because of my mom we can even get a house, and it's because of Johann's parents we can be in one we feel we can make our home.
9. Blog 4 times a month, once about homeschool
I did it!
10. Take family photos!!!
We took some with the Simonds side when Johann's brother Derek was here over Christmas break but I want to get some ones probably this April right before all the kids have their birthdays of us and our kids.
11. Exercise 3 times a week
Yeah, this was one I forgot about. I've mostly been trying to not eat junk since Thanksgiving through Christmas was basically having too many treats around all.the.time. I've been making an effort to be more active but I haven't had set working out time. Hopefully once we settling into the house.
12. Read a book a month
I finished volumes 1 and 2 of "The Portrait of Lady," by Henry James. I didn't like it as much as I was hoping, and sometimes the narrative was so bogged down, and frankly boring (this from someone who likes Russian lit, so that should say something) that I would go a day or two without picking it up. With that said, the parts that were not boring or cumbersome were excellent, and there were some wonderful characters like Ralph Touchett, and Henrietta Stackpool. It was also easy to hate two of the characters you were meant to hate.
I needed something a little more simple so I picked up 'The Paris Wife,' and it's definitely much easier reading but I'm already depressed for this woman knowing how Hemingway's romantic life turns out.
So overall, not failing. Whoop.