As I indicated in a past blog post (29 Things To-Do Before I Turn 30....), I wanted to read more - and no, magazines on the cardio machines at the gym doesn't count. I wanted to be more purposeful in my time in the Word, as well as reading books that would glorify God as I constantly improve my relationship with Him, my husband, my children, my family, my friends, and my co-workers.
Here are some books on the top of my list (with the Bible included, of course!):
1. "The Pilgrim's Progress" - Our church's Women's Bible Study is studying this book. While I can't make the bible study due to being in the office, I am excited to read along with them.
2. "Give Them Grace" by Elyse Fitzpatrick - I've started this book and look forward to finishing it, as I struggle with - like the title suggests - giving my children grace rather than always feeling the need to discipline and punish them as a way of "teaching them a lesson."
3. "When Sinners Say 'I Do'" by Dave Harvey - I started this book several months ago, but it was shoved to the bottom of the stack. It wasn't until I was cleaning recently that I came across the book and realized I hadn't finished it - gulp! This will definitely be a convicting book/study as I seek to improve my relationship with Jack and that it glorifies God.
4. "To Kill a Mockingbird" by Harper Lee - I love, love, love this literary classic! I read this my sophomore year in high school and couldn't put it down. I love the classic film, too. I have read the first two chapters and look forward to re-living the story again. Next on the literary classic list? "The Great Gatsby" or something by John Steinbeck.
Y'all know that I'll be running in the Cleveland Marathon in May, just three weeks shy of my 30th birthday! I kicked off my training this morning with a nice 5.5-miler. I'm looking forward to being on a plan again - one that incorporates plenty of cross training and strength training (two of my weaknesses, as I feel like I should run all the time and know it's better for my body - both now and later - to have a day of complete rest and 1-2 days of biking, elliptical, pilates/yoga, strength, etc).
I'm sure I'll do other running races throughout the year, but it all depends on the kidlets and schedules and, honestly, finances. Since I'll be doing the "big" one that involves travel, I'll definitely be sticking close to home for the other races. On the list: my all-time favorite Easter Sun Run 10K, a new favorite - the Titan 10K in July, and maybe I'll do 1-2 half-marathons in there or the Turkey Trot 10-miler. Who knows? Maybe I'll finally break 50 minutes in my 10K!
I've been perusing Pinterest, cookbooks, and other resources as I'm compiling some new stand-bys in my list of go-to recipes. I'd like to do more stir-frys and I have some new (or improved!) crock-pot recipes that I'll be breaking out as I return back to work and basketball gets back into the full swing of games and late nights.
I'm also getting back to baking large batches of healthy muffins, waffles, and other quick breakfasts to freeze and serve on most mornings. I love doing this as it's more cost-effective, healthier, and my kids gobble up the yummy goodness.
I'd also like to start making different and quick lunches - quesadillas, bean and cheese burritos - anything that can work into our rotation of the ever-popular turkey/ham/cheese roll-ups, pbj, mac and cheese, and sides.
I'm always eager to get back to work after a nice, long vacation that I'm blessed to take at the end of the year. I'll hit the ground running on Thursday as we have a lot of new and exciting opportunities ahead, including a lot of new marketing/promotional ideas to get started and of course the great races/special events we put on each year. I love my job and love the flexibility it provides as I have the amazing blessing to both work from home and work in an office. Thank you, God, for this amazing opportunity! I seek to glorify Him in my work and those I interact with on both a daily basis and occasional basis.
This will be the year I learn how to sew! I'm encouraged by the fact that I've mastered how to make hair-bows and have fun with it. Maybe I'm a bit crafty after all. :)
My babies are growing up and they are both at a VERY fun stage right now. I'm soaking it up by more trips outside, strolls around the neighborhood, and not caring that the house is never going to be picked up or the laundry will never be completely done. I can't believe that we're already discussing preschool options with Mackie starting in September. That being said, her time at home is slowly starting to fade away.
CLEANING AND SPRUCING UP:
We have a laundry-list of items to clean up and spruce up on our house. It's never-ending, but there are definite ones I'm going to tackle: landscaping the yard, fixing our fence gate (that always whips around in the wind), creating a play nook for the kiddos in our basement, deep cleaning windows and blinds, etc etc.
This is the first summer Jack won't have a nice supplemental income in the summer. That being said, we're making financial adjustments and he'll be looking for work opportunities here and there. I had fun (yes, FUN!) yesterday plotting out our finances for 2013 and looking over the month-by-month various line items. It's like a 500-piece puzzle - takes a bit of time, patience, and lots of coffee to sift through, but a sense of accomplishment once it's figured out - and actually followed through!
Have a marvelous 2013. How are YOU going to glorify God this coming year?! Happy New Year!