18 for 2018 // Plans for the new year

18 for 2018 - Plans for the new year

In January last year I wrote a post about my hopes, plans and goals for 2017 and as it turns out I managed to do quite well with them. I was going to write a similar post this year, and then Lucy from Mrs H’s Favourite Things invited me to join her and some fellow bloggers in writing an ’18 for 2018′ post – part goals and plans, part bucket list with a focus on putting yourself first. Read more

Looking back at 2017 // Hopes, plans and goals

2017 Goals - How did I do?

Back in January last year I wrote a post about my hopes, plans and goals for 2017. Now I have to be honest and admit I never really looked at it again for the rest of the year but I did kind of have some of the things in the back of my mind as the year went on.

Anyway, I decided that before I started making some new plans for 2018 I would take a look back and see how I got on with my 2017 goals, plans and hopes…
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Life goals // Is it OK not to dream?

Life goals - is it OK not to dream?

I wrote a post at the start of the year about my goals, plans and hopes for 2017. Some were blogging goals, some were personal goals and some were just general hopes for the year and the future. Today’s #Blogtober prompt was ‘goals’ and I thought about writing an update to my last post. But then I thought I might write about something a little different. Read more

2017 // Hopes, plans and goals

I know I’m a bit late to the party with this one, what with us being three weeks into 2017 already, but I’ve been thinking a lot this last few weeks about what I want to achieve over the next year.

If I had to pick a word to describe 2016 it would be survival. Getting through the days on very little sleep, surviving a house move with two little kids, managing on one wage after my maternity pay ended in May. It’s not been the easiest of years but it’s done now and I am determined to make 2017 more about actually living than merely surviving.

Hopes plans goals 2017

I’m not one for new year’s resolutions, and often I don’t have much of a plan for life at all but I’ve been thinking about where I want to be this time next year and I thought I would share some of my hopes, plans and goals for 2017. Some of these are personal and some are blogging related, and I suppose some are a mixture of both… Read more

[The Prompt: Week 9] Spring

Spring flowers
A combination of lack of time, computer access and inspiration has meant that I have missed the last couple of weeks of The Prompt. However, I am still loving this linky from Sara at mumturnedmom and I’m pleased I am able to join in again this week.

This week’s prompt is a quote and it seemed to come at such a opportune time for me as this week has been all about making new plans.

Spring is the time of plans and projects.
 Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

Last Saturday my friend Claire came to babysit for the evening so Barry and I could go out for dinner. It was only the fourth time we’ve been out without Toby since he was born so we wanted to make the most of it. We went out, tried not to talk about Toby too much, and we made some plans. We’ve both been a bit fed up about various things lately, life has just kind of being plodding along, so we decided it was time to make some changes. None of them are massive changes but hopefully things that will make things better for all of us.

First up, we’re going to buy another car. At the moment Barry gets up at 6 am, he leaves the house at 6:30 am to walk to the train station twenty minutes away. He then gets the train to Edinburgh (another half an hour) and at the other end has another half hour walk to his office to start work at 8 am. He leaves the office about 4 pm usually and walks back to the station to get the train and then we pick him up at the other end. He pays £160 a month for the pleasure of getting a train which is often delayed and sometimes cancelled altogether. We did some maths and if we get a small, fuel efficient car, something like a Toyota Aygo it would cost the same if not a bit less and he would knock two hours off his commute. He has spoken to his work and they have agreed he can work 7-3 most days so he would be home for not long after 3:30 pm. Which would also help me as I wouldn’t have such long days on my own with Toby. So that’s the first part of the plan.

The second part is a bit more long term. When Barry first moved to Scotland to live with me we always had a plan that at some vague point in the future we would move back to England. I’ve lived here for over ten years now and I do like it but I can’t see myself staying here forever. We’d both like to live nearer our parents in the north of England. When Toby was born, we decided on a five year plan; that we would move back before Toby started primary school. We currently live in a three bedroom house, it’s (or was) a new build about ten years old. It’s a nice house but we haven’t really done anything to it, apart from decorate Toby’s room since we moved in two and a half years ago. We had a vague thought that if we have another baby that we might move to a bigger house here in Scotland before our big move down south. Because of this we weren’t really making any effort with the house we have. As well as decorating there are a few other little things which we could sort out quite easily and they would make it a much nicer and more practical place to live. So after talking about it at the weekend we decided we would definitely rule out a move until we were ready to move to our ‘forever house’ in England and instead we would spend some time (and unfortunately) money sorting out the house we have now.

So, in no particular order we are going to decorate and tile the bathroom, rearrange the kitchen to make room for a big fridge freezer, reorganise our third bedroom which we use as an study/spare room to make better use of the space, and then probably decorate the rest of the house too. Oh, and out of the blue Barry’s dad offered to buy us a shed! So that’s going to need a bit of preparation work in the garden to make space and then all the gardening stuff can be moved out of the garage and we can reclaim some of that space too.

It somehow feels right to be making plans in spring – the first flowers have come out in the garden, the days are getting longer and it feels right to be getting life organised.

mumturnedmom

Plans for 2014

2014 plans

I know we’re a few days into the new year already so I thought it was about time I wrote about some of my plans for 2014. These are not resolutions as such, just some things I hope to achieve in the coming year.

1. Continue to lose weight.

I’ve not been back on the scales yet but I’m pretty sure I’ll be back to square one after my Christmas eating! I’m not going to do my usual trick of just giving up though. My Fitness Pal was working well for me before Christmas so I’m going to carry on the calorie counting and hopefully try and fit in some exercise too – even if it’s just making sure I get out for a walk with Toby in the buggy a couple of times a week. After years of faddy diets and crazy exercise regimes I know exactly what I need to do. I’ve found a really simple way to lose weight. Shall I let you in on my secret? Here it is: Eat less, eat better, move more. That’s it. You can have that one for free!

2. Watch our spending.

I’m to used to having two pretty decent salaries to go at so although we’ve never been well off, before Toby came along we didn’t have to worry too much about our spending. I’ve always been quite money savvy and make sure I find the best deals for things like the mortgage and car insurance. Where I’ve been getting a bit slack though  is with the supermarket shopping. Now we only have one salary and maternity pay though I need to be a bit more careful. I always used to plan our meals for the week before doing the weekly shop, and I still have been, in my head. But without a proper list I always seem to forget something, and when I go back to Tesco for one thing I always end up spending twenty quid and a lot of baby clothes manage to find their way into my basket! So from now on it’s back to meal planning and proper lists and hopefully, therefore, a reduction in our day to day spending.

3. Continue blogging.

I’d like to try and post more regularly and I’ve got lots of ideas for new posts. I want to write some more about cloth nappies; I know I found reading other peoples’ experiences helpful when we started out using them. We’re also just starting weaning with Toby so there’ll be plenty about that too. I still want to join in with Silent Sunday and The Ordinary Moments and maybe find some other linkys to join to. I really want to work on the design of my blog too – I’d love to get a custom illustration done. If anyone knows someone who could help with this without it costing the earth please do let me know! To this end I’m also going to look at going self-hosted this year. I’ve got my own domain name already but I think moving to wordpress.org will give me more options design-wise.

4. Go back to work.

My employment situation is quite complicated and as I’m a teacher working for the local council I can’t really go into much detail here. Basically I was on a temporary contract before maternity leave so I still don’t know if I will have a job to go back to, or if I do then I don’t know where it will be. If everything works out though I should be going back to work in August and hopefully back to the school I was at last year. I initially thought I would want to go back to work part time (and that would still be my plan in the long run) but I’ve started to think that, due to new year’s intention number 5, I might be better going back full time for a year. Which brings us to…

5. Baby number two!

I know Toby is only six months old but we’ve always said we want two kids and I’d like them two years apart. The main reason for this is that my brother is exactly (to within one day!) two years older than me and we got on really well growing up. So, if we want our kids two years apart then I need to be pregnant again towards the end of the year. And if I go back to work full time then I’ll get full maternity pay instead of it being reduced to part time pay. I know I might change my mind when it gets a bit nearer, and we might choose to delay things a bit, but at the moment this is the plan.

And that’s it. I think I’m going to leave it at five. Of course I want to have lots of family time with Toby and the hubby – hopefully that will include our first family holiday abroad too! I know this year is just going to be amazing watching Toby grow and develop. The first six months of his life has been the most awesome, overwhelming and brilliant six months of my life. I can barely imagine how exciting the next year is going to be!