Thursday, August 6, 2015

August Goals

"There is no month in the whole year in which nature wears a more beautiful appearance than in the month of August. Spring has many beauties, and May is a fresh and blooming month, but the charms of this time of year are enhanced by their contrast with the winter season. August has no such advantage. It comes when we remember nothing but clear skies, green fields, and sweet-smelling flowers — when the recollection of snow, and ice, and bleak winds, has faded from our minds as completely as they have disappeared from the earth — and yet what a pleasant time it is! Orchards and cornfields ring with the hum of labour; trees bend beneath the thick clusters of rich fruit which bow their branches to the ground; and the corn, piled in graceful sheaves, or waving in every light breath that sweeps above it, as if it wooed the sickle, tinges the landscape with a golden hue. A mellow softness appears to hang over the whole earth; the influence of the season seems to extend itself to the very wagon, whose slow motion across the well-reaped field is perceptible only to the eye, but strikes with no harsh sound upon the ear."

Charles Dickens perfectly put into words my feelings about the month of August. It may be my new favorite month, and for the last week I've been busy enjoying it's beauty and charm. But before too much more time passes, I wanted to sit down and write out my goals for the month.

A big part of living intentionally for me is making realistic goals for myself on a daily, weekly, monthly and even yearly basis. Some of these goals can be achieved after a couple of hours work, and others require daily discipline for long periods of time to complete (saving money, training for a race, etc). 

My goals for this month fall into a few different categories, and I'll try to check in again in September to reflect on how successful I was at achieving my goals and to share any new goals I may have. 

Both my kids are great at playing independently, and although I'm grateful that they've mastered this skill early in life, I feel like sometimes I don't spend as much quality time with them as I'd like as a result. This month I'd like to focus on one-on-one time doing an activity that is relationship building as well as educational for them. Riggs hasn't gotten very into coloring yet, and I think it would be beneficial to him for me to sit and color with him for half an hour a few times a week.

When Riggs was the age Raina is now, I spent hours reading board books and poems to him every week. Because we spend so much time reading the books that Riggs likes, I feel like Raina hasn't gotten the reading experiences that I feel are important at her age, and so I'm working on spending five to fifteen minutes a day reading age-appropriate books to just her, in addition to the books the three of us read together. 

I haven't had the time sit down and write a full blog post about this yet, but Steve and I are really working on decluttering our lives so that we can be free to live more fully. What's funny is that to most people, we already live pretty simply and don't have a lot of the stuff people seem to accumulate at our stage in life. However we are striving to live intentionally and have big dreams about splitting our time between a small cabin/"home base" in Alaska and a truck/trailer traveling and exploring for months at a time. To make this dream a reality we need to evaluate everything we own and make sure the items we keep are things we feel we can't live without.

This month I'm focusing on going through our clothes (again) and books. Since the season is about to change it's a good time to evaluate our clothing to get rid of things we aren't wearing and to add any items we might need for colder weather. 

Training has really been on the back burner for the two weeks with how much we've been traveling and spending time with family. But it's kind of okay because after the Her Tern Half my knees took quite a bit of time to feel back to normal; they were sore and achy for over two weeks, so the rest has been nice. I'm supposed to be running the Big Wild Life Skinny Raven Half Marathon next Sunday, but I actually still haven't registered and am really on the fence about it.

Despite that, my goals for the month are to run 3-5 times and at least 25 miles each week and to get some cross training in at least two times a week. I think one of the reasons my knees have been so achey is because my butt and hip muscles are somewhat underdeveloped. 

As I mentioned in the beginning of this post, I think August is one of the most beautiful months of the spring/summer season and I want to be out enjoying it and exploring the amazing places across the state. We've been able to get quite a bit of camping in so far this summer despite Steve being gone working, but there are still a few places I'd like to go before the summer is over, including Hope and the Portage area.

If you've been following my blog for a while, you have probably noticed that I haven't posted nearly as much since my pregnancy with Raina (almost two years ago now!). I've been wanting to post more regularly for quite a while, but it just hasn't been very realistic for me with two kids and a husband who has been gone nearly the entire summer. However, Riggs is starting preschool this month and I will finally have a little bit more time to devote to this space.

My goals for this month are to post at least two times per week on my personal blog and to contribute two posts per month to NW Healthy Mama blog. I am so excited to be able to spend more time doing something I love so much in a community of women that I feel so encouraged by.

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