My Spring Journal

My daily planning journal is looking decidedly springlike these days. My newest journal is wearing a spring cover and is sporting many beautiful spring magazine pictures on its inner pages.

I make my planning journals the same way I make my thankful journal – using a sketch book from Walmart and scrapbook paper. I cover the cover with scrapbook paper (directions here), usually based on the current season, or just whatever looks pretty to me at the moment. Then comes the really fun part. I cut lovely pictures out of magazines, again usually seasonal in nature, but really just anything that I love, and glue them in my journal to decorate the pages.

Next I label the pages. I put the day and date at the top, and then my planning categories scattered around the page with room to fill in a list under them. My personal categories are: Call, Do, Errands, Dinner, and Blog. These are just the categories that I have used for years to organize my To Do list for each day. They work best for me – you might have different categories that work best for you.

My Sunday pages differ from this by only including the date and a To Do This Week list. I usually write a little bit about how I spent the day at the top of the page and make my weekly planning list at the bottom.

I make about a week’s worth of pages at a time, usually on Sunday afternoons, and when I fill up one journal, I pick out a new paper for my next one, cover it and keep on going. I love making and using these journals. I don’t just use them for planning, although that is their main purpose, but I also use them to record thoughts, quotes, recipes, poetry, special memories, and really anything that I want to remember. I keep the old ones on a bookshelf to refer back to every now and then.

I really love using my magazines this way, rather than throwing them out with all of their pretty pictures. And I love having a beautiful personalized journal that works so well for me.

Blessings,
Nancy

My 2012 Goals

Have you made goals for the new year? Something about January 1st always gets me thinking about what I’d like to do different or better in the next year. It isn’t really a beating myself up session, but rather there is a sense of excitement, because the things I want to change are usually things which bring me more peace and put me back in line with God’s will for my life. Some of my goals this year are spiritual goals and some are practical, but they are all exciting to me and things that I want to work on. Here is my goal list for 2012 ~

~ Live daily in the joy of the Lord.

~ Cultivate an attitude of thankfulness.

~ Daily Bible Study time (I am starting an independent Precepts course, and want to spend an hour each day working on it).

~ Home cleaning schedule (am always wanting to do this, but thinking it might finally be a possibility with my youngest being almost 6 yrs old now!)

~ More outdoors time – life has been too busy this past year and I haven’t had the quiet time outdoors that refreshes me so much.

~ Begin an encouragement ministry – I’ve thought about this for a few years now and want to get it going this year.

~ Declutter house – ongoing, but I want to step it up a notch.

~ Quilting – I want to set aside more time for this, as it is a refreshing pasttime for me and helps provide some balance in my life. I also want to move beyond piecing quilt tops and hand quilt a quilt this year.

~ Card-making – This goes along with my encouragement ministry. I need to plan some intentional time to work on cards.

~ Release every burden to the Lord and rest in His ability and desire to handle them.

I’ll be talking more about each of these goals in the future weeks, and sharing how I’m doing with them. I would love to hear about some of the things you are all working on this year, too, so please share if you have a moment!

Blessings,
Nancy

Happy New Year 2012!

Well, here we are in a brand new year! I love the beginning of a new year – so full of new beginnings and fresh starts! The hustle and bustle of the holidays is over and there is time once again for reflection and putting things in order. I spent some time yesterday jotting down and thinking through my goals for 2012, and will share those with you tomorrow. A friend remarked the other day that, as Christians, we really can enjoy this fresh new start each and every day ~

“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
His mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
great is Your faithfulness .
“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“therefore, I will hope in Him.”

Lamentations 3:22-24

We can have a fresh start each morning, as we choose to walk each moment of our day with the Lord, and trust Him with all that comes our way. One of my goals for this new year is to release my burdens to the Lord each and every time I am confronted with them – rather than worrying or becoming anxious and frustrated. I want to live in the peace that He has promised me.

And what about blogging, you might ask – is that on my list for the new year? Well, yes, it is, I’m glad to say. I hope you will stop by and visit frequently, as I plan to be back in the writing saddle (sorry, my Texas is showing!) from now on.

Check back tomorrow for my 2012 goals list, and I hope you have a wonderful day!

Blessings,
Nancy

Finding time to blog . . .

I want to be here. I want to write, but life seems to be taking all of my minutes these days. I have thought about quitting blogging until life settles down, but that might be years, and I really do want to capture our memories here for the future. Not to mention that I miss the creative outlet of writing. Therefore, I am thinking about my days, trying to reorganize my activities and time to plan a regular time for writing and posting here. I am looking forward to sharing with you all again soon!

Blessings,
Nancy

Summer Theme Days

This summer Jeff and I decided to come up with special Summer Theme Days for the kids. I had been contemplating whether or not to do a summer camp for them like I did a few years back, but that seemed like more than I was up to this year. I did want to do something special and have special days to look forward to, so one evening we spent some time brainstorming and came up with this plan, which I think will be great fun and create some wonderful memories for all of us as well.

The plan is to set aside one day a week for a special Theme Day. The day will include a special activity, outing, or game; special themed food; and sometimes crafts. Each week the theme of the day is different. We came up with 11 fun theme days, which filled our summer, taking one week off during VBS. I will share the details about each of the themes each week as we live them, but here is the general list of the Theme Days that we have planned ~

June

    MarioKart Tournament
    Nature Day
    Western Day
    “Cars 2” Movie Day

July

    Bible Camp Day
    Wii Sports Tournament
    Hawaiian Day
    (Only 3 this month due to VBS week at church)

August

    Board Game Mania Day
    Mystery Day
    Wii Bowling Tournament
    Camping Day

The kids are really excited about our plans and looking forward to the fun we will have each week (me too!).

If you think you might like this idea for your family and have any questions about any of these days (since I won’t really be talking about them until they take place), I will be happy to let you know what we are thinking about ahead of time. I don’t have them all completely planned yet, but have ideas and thoughts for each of them.

Our MarioKart tournament is today, complete with special snacks and prizes for all. I’ll post more about our day in my next post.

Time to start our engines . . . Laura and I are up first in the tournament.

Have a nice day!

Blessings,
Nancy

Goals for the new year . . .

The beginning of a new year always gets me excited. The new year seems like a fresh, clean slate just ready for changes and improvements and growth. Maybe, too, the end of the busy month of December with all of it’s activities and “to-do’ lists gives me a feeling that I can tackle some of those important things that have slipped to the back burner.

So – every year around this time my thoughts usually turn to what I want to do next – what priorities need to be rearranged and how to go about doing so. I can usually be seen scribbling things in my notebook (my constant companion) – new lists, thoughts, and goals. While I am still tweaking these things, some of my main goals for the new year have been thought through and recorded in my notebook to keep in front of me. Here are some of the things that I want to accomplish this year, in no particular order ~

~ Lose some weight (is this at the top of everyone’s list?), which I hope to accomplish by healthier food choices and eating more meals at home.

~ Pare down possessions – an ongoing process.

~ Spend more consistent daily time studying and reading my Bible.

~ Trust God more.

~ Live thankfully, joyfully, and peacefully as a pattern of life.

~ Incorporate more quilting time into my days (so maybe I can actually finish some of these projects!)

~ Read more with the children.

~ Share my thoughts more with my husband.

~ Focus more on glorifying God and serving others than on pleasing myself.

Well, that’s a good start – I am excited about tackling these goals and look forward to enjoying the fruit that will follow. Have you made any goals for the new year yet?

Blessings,
Nancy

A Fresh New Year ~

Well, with all my good intentions, blogging just didn’t happen last month, but now that the busyness of the Christmas season is past I should be able to spend more time here. I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and are ready to face the new year with the anticipation of seeing what wonders the Lord has in store for us. I have been thinking about a few things that I hope to share in the near future, and am excited about starting a fresh new year.

I’ll be back soon with updates on our family and a list of my goals for the coming year.

Blessings,
Nancy