Checking Off Goals at the End of Summer

Summer Plans and Goals

I debated on the timing of this post but since my husband starts teaching today, it means that summer is over in the Whirrett household. It’s been a wonderful summer! Even with not returning to teaching this year, the summer still went by too quickly. I did manage to cross off quite a few of my summer goals. Ready for an update? Here we go.

Vacation Plans

Travel to North Carolina to see my family. Done! We had a marvelous time in North Carolina. All 15 Barzes stayed together in a rented house for a week. We explored the Biltmore (family picture on the balcony below), rode the Great Smoky Mountain Railroads, wandered through Farmer’s Markets, explored the Waynesville downtown, went on evening walks, played games, visited lots and ate very well. I think we need to make this a tradition at least every couple years!

Exploring the Biltmore mansions on vacation

Drive to Nebraska to see college friends. Done! We drove over 2,000 miles visiting Iowa (my Aunt and Uncle) and Nebraska (Andy’s brother & his wife, plus college friends and my college roommate). We also stayed in Kansas (with my Barz Grandparents) and stopped in Missouri (to see my brother) on the way home. We saw 34 different friends and family so it was a great visiting vacation!

Visit Mackinaw island with my in-laws. Done! We enjoyed a bike ride around Mackinaw Island and ate at some great little pizza places. My favorite parts? Playing with Nathan in the clear, cool water and enjoying a delicious homemade waffle cone and ice cream on our last night.

Home Plans

Clean out the attics. Still on the list. I did organize an upstairs closet with all 11 years of my teaching things but the attics are still a mess. This will have to be a fall project.

Organize the pantry and basement stockpile. Done! My downstairs stockpile is much more organized now that my husband figured out how to put an extra shelf in the basement. It’s nice to be able to see what I have at a glance.

Get new kitchen flooring installed. Still on the list. With all our travels, it just didn’t happen this summer. I’m planning on shopping for flooring over Labor Day weekend because this project needs to get done!

Level the piles of dirt in our backyard. Done! As of yesterday, we can check this off our list. Our backyard is slowly become a backyard again! Now to plant and seed the grass, but that’s my husband’s job!

Paint the kitchen. Done! We accomplished this one earlier in the summer than we expected, but one weekend and it was done. It looks a lot warmer and cozier now with the deeper blue. Plus, it matches perfectly my country gingham curtains that Grandma sewed for the kitchen! When we moved in, the paint was a not attractive green (as shown above the new countertops) and we painted the kitchen a country blue. The new blue is much deeper with a hint of green in it at times. I’m very happy to check this project off our list!

Changing Kitchen Paint Colors

Blogging Plans

Complete the Elite Blogging Academy. Done! I completed most of the assignments but have a couple ongoing projects to work on. It’s exciting to see my blog grow, much as I’ve dreamed, thanks to this amazing class. I still have lots of work ahead of me but I’m pleased at the direction we’re going. Thanks to all of you who make this blog what it is!

Continue updating old blog posts and pictures. In progress. I can’t say this project is finished because I have lots of old posts to go through and update. I am making slow progress and am making it a goal to update at least one post a week.

Post on my Facebook page regularly and grow Facebook followers. In progress. Again, I’m still working on this goal. I’ve set up a Facebook schedule and that helps me with my posting and I’m enjoying interacting with everyone on Facebook. Since June, my Facebook page has grown from 285 to 423. Have you liked Joyfully Thriving on Facebook yet? You can do so here. Of course, what has helped me grow the most is when people (like you!) who love and read this blog, share my Facebook page on their Facebook page. That’s the best – and my favorite – way to grow!

Get back on Pinterest and resume pinning. Done! It’s good to be back on Pinterest. Not only is Pinterest a huge source of traffic for my blog, but I love the resources, ideas and recipes that I can find there. If you haven’t already, come find and follow me on Pinterest here, to see what I’m pinning!

Create two dozen custom “Oh, the Places You’ll Go” books. In progress. I ordered 2 dozen books with my profits from custom book sales but only have written in 4 books. I had more written, but I sold all 5 of those. I’m going to make it a goal to write for 20 minutes a day during the beginning of naptime or after Nathan goes to bed until all 2 dozen books are finished. I did create and begin selling a handy digital download for people who are interested in a bit more help in making their own books. It’s only $3 and you can learn more about it here. 

Professional Plans

Renew my Indiana teaching license. Done! This was easier than I anticipated, thanks to my accreditation team hours. Even though I’m not teaching this year, my Indiana teachers license is now current until 2020.

Teach the occasional summer piano lesson and make a piano schedule for the upcoming school year. Done! Since school starts this week, I’m easing most of my students into lessons again, starting next week. This is my side job for the year…since I’m not teaching!

Help my teacher husband in his classroom. Done! My mother-in-law baby-sat Nathan two days so I could spend time helping Andy. I reorganized his library (by themes), labeled desks, cut out lamination, labeled lockers, wrote name tags, and anything else I could do to save Andy some time.

Personal Plans

Complete the Make Over Your Mornings challenge. In progress. Due to the busy summer, I didn’t start this course until recently. My plan is to get it finished by the end of August so that September starts fresh with new habits!

Drink more water and continue eating lots of fruits and vegetables. In progress. I’m making great progress on this goal but still want to keep working on it. This past week, especially, my husband and I have really bumped up our veggie consumption which makes me feel good.

Walk lots. Done! Thanks to vacation, I accomplished this goal. We’ve had some cooler days recently that have us outside again. Early summer was rainy but we still managed to walk a fair amount this summer.

Finish Nathan’s 12 month Shutterfly book. Done! I had a free code that was expiring so used that as extra motivation to cross this off the list. I absolutely love the way it turned out! I’ll share more on the blog soon because this is one of my favorite scrapbooks that I have created to date.

Start on our 2015 Shutterfly family album. Still on the list. I did create our North Carolina vacation book but haven’t started on our 2015 one yet. I started uploading pictures to Shutterfly this week and need to set aside an evening once a week to work on it.

Read lots. Done! It wasn’t as much as previous summers, but I did read several books. My favorite reads were What Alice Forgot for my book club and the two Christy and Todd married years books by Robin Jones Gunn. I love that this series from my teenage years has been continued!

Enjoy the summer! Done, done and done! As you can see, it was a busy summer but a good one. Don’t worry! I didn’t spend the whole summer checking things off my list. I took plenty of opportunities to relax too. I napped occasionally when Nathan did, and Andy and I took turns sleeping in. We ate out with gift cards a time or two. We started watching Parenthood on Netflix. We watched Nathan splash in his pool in the middle of the afternoon and went to a local splash pad. We enjoyed our travels and our time at home.

We had a great summer! How was yours? Did you accomplish some of your summer time goals, projects and travels?

Nathan at the splash pad

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  1. Just curious, what part of Nebraska did you visit? I grew up in Lincoln, and have family there and in Omaha. Sometimes I really do miss it up there! So glad you got so much accomplished and were able to relax too! I like the blue in your kitchen. I was suppose to paint our bedroom this month, but I still can’t decide on the color!

    1. We were in both Lincoln, and Omaha! My husband and I met at Concordia University in Seward, so we became well acquainted with that area of Nebraska during our time there. Nebraska will always hold a dear place in our hearts. Picking paint colors is difficult! We decided on our color only because it matched our curtains…and I’m amazed that we were able to find a swatch to match! Good luck picking your bedroom paint color!

      1. Small World! I visited Concordia one year in high school for a speech competition. It is always fun to hear about other people who have lived in NE!

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