Resolutions and a Word for 2014

Yes, I am one of those people.
A resoultions person.
I make them every year.
I love welcoming in a New Year.

I like the idea of setting goals, making plans, starting fresh and having a clean slate.

I also love looking back & reflecting on the past year as I begin a new year.
Before we look at my 2014 resolutions, let's take a look at how I did on my 2013 resolutions:

Since I am a teacher, I love "grading" myself on how I did.
1. Date night with Kevin once a month. Yes, I know I said it last year, but we REALLY need to do this. With 3 kids & both of us working, we need to be even more intentional about date nights so we can reconnect as husband & wife and best friends.  
I give us a B- for this. We didn't have a date night every month, but we did have 2 weekends away (one in June for a wedding and one in August for our 11th Anniversary) That is 2 more than we had in 2012!  
2. Stick to a budget. We don't really have a budget. We don't spend outside our means, but do we really know how we are spending our money? (I know, at Target!) But in all seriousness, I need to figure out how much I spend on necessitates versus how much I spend on frivolous & dumb things.
I give myself a B on this...I still get sucked into the little stuff at Target, but not as much. I am definitely more thoughtful about what I buy and have totally cut back on the frivolous stuff.
3. Meal Planning. I am pretty good at meal planning. But, I have gotten lazy about it (can I blame having 3 kids again?) I used to be really good about sitting down on Sunday after church & meal planing for the whole week. I want to get back to doing this. 
I give myself an A with this. I think I deal a meal plan for every week this year except for 1 or 2. With 3 young kids and being a working mom,  a weekly meal plan is a MUST. It has totally simplified my late afternoons/dinner time. If you don't meal plan, I highly recommend it!
4. Try out 3 new recipes a month. I feel like I am always cooking the same things for dinner. So, my goal for 2013 is to try out 3 new recipes a month! This will be helpful with my meal planning also!
I give myself a B+ with this. I didn't try 3 new recipes a month, on average I tried about 2 new recipes a month (some months I did 3, but the majority of the months was 2 new ones.

5. Get the girls to eat better. We have PICKY eaters. I have fallen into the bad habit of making them something different from what Kevin & I have. So, in 2013, I am going to do better at making them eat a bigger variety of foods besides mac&cheese, chicken nuggets, PB&J, grilled cheese, pizza & hot dogs. I am going to have them start eating what we eat. I know this will take baby steps, but it needs to happen.
Ugh. I give myself a C- on this. They have gotten better about trying new things, but more often than not, I end up making the girls something different than what Kevin and I have. They have improved with what they eat this year, but there is still HUGE room for improvement.
 6. Laundry. For real. I need to figure out a system. I might have to bite the bullet & start doing it everyday. But that also means I need to start folding it and putting it away each day. *sigh* 
I despise laundry.
I give myself a C+ with this. I have gotten MUCH better about not letting it pile up AS much. And, 3 times this year I had EVERY SINGLE piece of laundry (except what we were wearing) folded and put away. Before this year, I don't know when the last time that has happened! I still get behind on laundry from time to time, but I don't let 7 or 8 loads pile up at once. Baby steps.
7. Take better care of myself. So many times I go to bed without washing my face (I know....terrible)
I don't exercise (I am blessed with good metabolism) but that doesn't mean I shouldn't be active. I know it will give me more energy. I was a former college athlete for crying out loud. It's just healthy to be active. Hey, we got Just Dance 4 for Christmas, so that's a start :) And by taking better care of myself I guess that means I shouldn't have ice cream every night. Also, by taking care of myself that includes being more daring with my wardrobe and not being stuck wearing the same old boring things. (More on this next week!)
I give myself a B+ with this. I didn't work out this year (I know, ugh.) But, I have taken much better care of my skin. I have stuck with my Rodan + Fields nightly regimen each night using the Redefine line. I have noticed such a difference in my skin and that is the main reason I started selling it! I have also taken better care of myself by mixing up my wardrobe and being more daring with what I wear. Doing the Pin-Spired link up has helped this! At the beginning of 2013 I had ONE pair of colored jeans. By the end of 2013, I have SEVEN pairs of colored jeans/pants.
8. Be more intentional with the girls. I feel bad that often times when they ask me to play with them, etc I have to say "No" or "In a minute" because I am nursing Luke or dealing with him. I feel like the past few months I have been in survival mode and I haven't gotten to really do fun things with them. They are really good about playing together and they love each other, but I feel like I have taken that for granted. I miss doing fun things like baking with them, etc.
I give myself a C+ with this. I am not going to lie...having a 3rd baby and having both girls in school with different schedules has made it a lot harder to have one on one time with each of them. I am for sure more intentional with them when Luke decides to take an afternoon nap. I have tried to do individual things with them, but they love each other so much, they want the other one to join in. So happy they have each other. They really have an amazing bond.
9.  Go to bed earlier. I am queen of the midnight bedtime. I am a night owl. I would stay up until 1 or 2 every night if I didn't have to work. But, I know I am a better wife, mom & teacher when I get more sleep, so I REALLY, REALLY, REALLY want to be more disciplined with my bedtime.
I give myself a D. I just need to accept that I am a night owl. I don't even know if it is physically possible for me to fall asleep before 11. Midnight is the time that I fall asleep at night, no matter what time I go upstairs to bed. I don't think I fell asleep before 11:00 once this year, and on average it was midnight. I just love the quiet house at night and can get so much done between the hours of 9 and midnight. #nightowlforever
10. Do 40 Bags in 40 Days again this year. This was SO good for me to do and I can't wait to do it again. Even though I just finished it this summer, I feel the clutter & stuff creeping back in and I don't like it.
I give myself a B with this. I completed my 40 Bags in 40 Days, but still have more stuff I can organize and get rid of, especially in closets/cupboards. It's amazing to me how the clutter and stuff creeps in with 3 kids. I feel like I clean out their closets and drawers once an month and they still have so much stuff! Ack!!!
Even though I am a failure with most of these, I still make resolutions each year.
I think it is good to take time to reflect as the year comes to a close and a new one begins.

Each year I pick a word to focus on for the year.
In 2010, I chose Intentional.
In 2011, I chose Cherish.
In 2012, I chose Nurture.
In 2013 I chose Simplify.
My word for 2014 is BUILD.
verb \ˈbild\
 to make (something) by putting together parts or materials
to develop or form (something) gradually
to increase the amount of (something)
Here are my resolutions for 2014 and they all include things I want to BUILD:
1. Build my relationship with Kevin. 
We will be celebrating 12 years of marriage this August. With 3 young kids it can be hard to fit in time for just the 2 of us. Now that Luke is older and not nursing, it should hopefully be easier for us to make time for a date night once a month, and hopefully a weekend or 2 away. We get along really well and I love spending time with him. Hoping to build our relationship even more this year. I want to build him up this year and be a more loving & encouraging wife.

2. Build up my kids.
I want Build up my girls and their confidence. I want them to be confident in who they are at school and with friends. I want to build their listening skills.
I want to build up their Independence and have them be more responsible with picking out their own clothes each day, making their beds, picking up their toys and rooms. Often times I end up doing these things because it's "easier". But at almost 7 and 5, I know they need to start being more independent.
I need to build their eating habits...I mentioned before they are picky. They have gotten better about trying more foods, but I need to incorporate more veggies into their diets. They eat me out of house & home in regards to fruit, but their veggie intake is lackluster.
I need to build their relationship with God and make sure I am consistent with our prayers and with reading their Bible and the Kids Jesus Calling.
With Luke, I want to build his sleeping habits and make sure that by the time he turns 2 in August he is pacifier free. I took the girls away when they were 13 months old, so this is all new territory for me. Ugh.

With my kids I want to build up my patience with them. Many times when I get home from teaching & they get home from school we are all tired and it is easy to lose my patience quickly. I want to have more patience this year.

 3. I want to build my relationship with God.
I want to be in the Word daily. I have gotten really lazy with this and that is just sad.
I want to build my Trust in God this year. We have a couple family members who are having some health issue and I really want to Trust God and His plan even when it's hard to. I know God has a plan and that all things work for his good, but sometimes that is easier for me to say than to truly believe.
I have been loving reading Jesus Calling each day so far this year as well. My goal is to read that the first thing everyday in bed, before I get up or check my phone.
4. I want to Build my Rodan + Fields business.
I have only been in this business since November and I am so amazed at how it has already grown and what a great opportunity it is....not to mention, it is incredibly flexible and part time. 
I love helping people feel good about their skin and I am excited about the people who have joined my team. I want to build their businesses also!
 If you are interested in the business side of Rodan + Fields, please send me an email:
melissa_larson17 {at} yahoo.com 
Or, if you are interested in the products, you can shop {HERE}
Our team is having a New Year's Special that is running the first week of January. 
1/1/14 through 1/8/14, so it ends in 2 days!!!
It is the "NEW YEAR, NEW YOU, NEW SKIN" promotion.
If you have ever wanted to try Rodan + Fields, NOW is the time!
We are giving $20 to everyone who signs up for PC Perks (the preferred customer program)
PC Perks is a one time cost of $19.95 and you get FREE Shipping and 10% off EVERY Order!
Once you sign up for PC Perks & place your order, send me a message and I will refund your $20 cost!
5. I want to build our Community.
I want to make sure I am intentional with our church community, with our kid's school community,  with our neighbors and with our friends. I feel that sometimes we get stuck in the same routines and don't branch out, I hope this is the year we are intentional with people we interact with on a daily/weekly basis. I want to make sure I build my kids community by being intentional about their friendships and playdates. I really slacked off with playdates for them Luke's first year of life because I was just an overwhelmed mom of 3. I want to be more intentional with their friendships and build those also.
6. Build up my blog readers.
My hope is that each time you visit here, you leave here encouraged, get a new idea, find a recipe you want to try or find a printable that you will use. I think the blogging world is so neat and I am so very thankful for each of you who take the time to read and/or comment. My goal this year is to get better at responding to you. My email can get out of control sometimes, so I want to be better at managing that and getting back to those who email me! I am a work in progress...thank you for understanding!
7. Build my muscle tone
Seriously. This is pathetic....I haven't worked out since I was pregnant with Kate almost 8 years ago. PATHETIC. That has GOT to change.
So, here's to you 2014. 
A year I hope to Build.
The year I turn 35 (YIKES)
A year I am a little anxious about, but hope my instincts prove me wrong.

How about you? Do you have a resolutions or a word of the year? 
I would love to hear about them!


  1. I just love you friend. You are the only person I know that grades their own resolutions...and so honestly! I loved your feedback and especially love your resolutions for this year!

  2. Love the word "build". I have so many of the same areas/things with my kids that I need to build on this year.

  3. You are such a teacher. I love that you evaluated your goals from last year and love that you are "building" this year.

  4. Please please PLEASE let me know if you have any success with your picky eaters! It is my struggle every single mealtime.

  5. I have some of the very same goals, and I love a New opportunity to start "over." Re: blogging-- You might want to look into the Allume Conference in Greenville, SC for next October. I went for the first time this past year and was amazed at all I learned! It's a bit far for you, I guess but it was a fantastic and beautifully-run conference!

  6. Great post!! I love your blog and love how much we have in common! I need to get my bedtime under control too. I've seen 1 am a few too many times lately :)

  7. Hey lady, I am so glad that you are still doing the word of the year - I picked that idea up from you, I think two years ago! I am working on my post about my word, which is balance for 2014. I am with you on being a night owl, maybe we should just embrace it. We are tall girls who like to stay up late and are raising picky eaters! I keep telling myself that my MIL likes to say that Marc only ate PB&J for the first 18 years of his life, and now he is a pretty good eater - so fingers crossed that they will outgrow it!

  8. I loved this post. I can relate being a working mom with two little ones. It's comforting to know others struggle with the same things that I do.

  9. You are so good!!!! I don't do resolutions. You gave me some good ideas though. Thanks!!!

  10. I always love your resolutions posts. Build is a great word! Excited to see you set that to life this year. :)



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