2015 Goals

{This post contains affiliate links, however, I ONLY recommend products that I really use and would recommend to a friend (& hey that’s you guys!)}

There have been some things in my life that I’ve wanted to do/change for quite a while right now and I’ve decided 2015 is the year! So here they are my 2015 Goals….

Here's my 2015 Goals...what are yours? {Dolen Diaries}

Let’s start with one that I began making some good progress with in 2014! Dinner Time…

I hate to meal plan and I do mean hate it. I would much rather spend my time painting a room or doing a craft with my kids than figure out what dinner will be for the week. The problem with hating to meal plan is that you go to the store and start throwing stuff in the cart and $300 later {this is when Costco isn’t my friend} you have nothing to make dinner with. So I signed up for eMeals and it has not only saved my budget but also changed my dinner time attitude. eMeals does all the planning for me and I love it! You can choose from a variety of plans depending on your dietary and budget needs. This fall I tried their slower cooker plan and it was perfect for those crazy back to school I have zero time days. I was worried at first that once you chose a plan you had to stick with that one plan {talk about pressure!} but you can totally switch around and try out different plans to find the one that fits you best! Isn’t that great!?! {I just switched to a new plan to go with my weight loss goal but more on that in a minute…}

Meal Planning Made Simple

My weekly menu and my shopping list arrive in my inbox every Wednesday and I shop on Sundays after church. See the fabulous progress I made in this area in 2014!?! No more $300 grocery bills with nothing to eat! But my work is not over!

I need to work on actually starting the dinner making process at a reasonable time. I swear the clock changes to hyper speed once the kids get home from school. I’m starting dinner when we really should be eating. So the plan now is to prep dinner during the kid’s after school snack time. This way once homework is done it’s ready to roll and I can get dinner on the table at dinner time!

It just wouldn’t be New Years without a weight loss goal now would it!?! My weight didn’t sneak up on me. I put on a lot of weight during my last pregnancy because I was having twins and it was an incredibly high stress pregnancy. After the boys were born, I started losing the weight at my normal post partum rate but then after losing Sky I started gaining back everything I was losing. When life hits you hard people like to feed you and it feels good to eat, but then it becomes a habit. Pretty soon your “baby” is turning 3 and you are realize that you have to make a change. I don’t want 2016 to roll around and still be saying to myself I need to lose this extra weight. So I joined Weight Watchers and changed our eMeals plan to the Portion Control plan that compliments WW perfectly! I will post updates on my journey each month so you can follow along.

So there you have my 2015 Goals! As much as I’d like to, I can’t change everything in one magical instant. I’m taking these goals on in baby steps, one day at a time, and I hope you’ll join me on this adventure!

What are your 2015 Goals?

How To Get Stuff Done

We recently moved and with that came chaos. Lots of it! You see my oldest was in the middle of a big soccer tournament; my husband was {& still is, but we’re praising God for this “problem”} up to his neck in projects at work; and I’m your basic mama trying to juggle it all plus moving. Chaos, right!?! I can only handle chaos for so long and after a couple of weeks feeling like a gypsy with some of our things in the old house where we were basically glamping and some in the new house in complete disarray I had reached my limit. I felt like it had been a lifetime since I was able to manage all of the tasks I needed to get done. Now that all our of our stuff is in the new house; it’s time to unpack; and make this place our home. Unfortunately, life does not pause for even a moment, so I needed to figure out How To Get Stuff Done!

How To Get Stuff Done! spend your time getting the things that you need & want to accomplish done! {Dolen Diaries}

After feeling like I spent a week accomplishing nothing and having a bit of a meltdown; I decided to sit down and think about what my most productive days looked like. I realized that those days actually started the night before with an idea of what needed to get accomplished the next day.

Now, I have major mama brain. It’s embarrassing how bad it is, I have missed playdates, appointments, etc.  My biggest problem is that I used to {USED to} have this amazing memory and could remember everything. I tend to forget that I now have three children and all of their stuff on top of all the other stuff. It’s too much for anyone to remember. I NEED to WRITE STUFF DOWN! If a project idea or a task to be completed pops into mind I write it down then I don’t waste brain power trying to remember everything.

How To Get Stuff Done Dump List Index {Dolen Diaries}

I heard about a “dump list” {can I just say I hate the name!?! I wish it sounded nicer.} where you “dump” all the ideas, etc. out of your brain and onto a list. I picked up a pretty gold, black, & white lined spiral notebook at Michael’s for $2 to keep all of my lists in. To start you make an index page to keep everything organized.  As you add lists you add the page number and title of the list to the index page. I started mine with the list of things we needed to do to get our old house ready to rent out. Anything rental related went on that list and it was easy to find because the page number was right on the index. As you complete tasks you check or cross them off the dump list. When I decide that a task is no longer relevant or just not something I am going to do, I cross it off. That keeps my lists to only what I want and need to do no extra fluff.

When I’m home I keep my notebook open to my current list and add to them as I think of things. When I go places I pop my notebook into my bag so I have it with me if I think of anything. It just helps me keep my mind decluttered. I also put dates on my phone calendar. I used to have some on my Facebook events calendar, some in e-mail, a few written down in a notebook, etc. Basically, they were everywhere and totally not organized. So now it all goes in one place.

How To Get Stuff Done {Dolen Diaries}

Now that I have everything written down, I can use my planner to organize my days. First I look at my calendar and add appointments, soccer practices, etc. Once I have those filled in, I can see what open time slots my day has and can fill those in with items on my dump list. I also like to ask my husband if there any is anything he needs to me to do during the day and put those on high priority. Now here’s the tricky part for me…keeping the list realistic. I have been known to make these crazy long to do lists only to fail miserably at completing them. The failure on top of the exhaustion from trying to complete the impossible makes for a cranky mama and no one wants to come home to that! So I try to triage my list only putting the things that need to get done in my planner. Then once those tasks are complete I can always go to my dump list and add more.

How To Get Stuff Done {Dolen Diaries}

I know you want to know what planner I use so…. I got my printable planner from Say Not Sweet Anne and I love it! I print two months out at a time so I have the current and next month available for planning. I hole punch them and keep them in a 3 ring binder. They have pretty cute 3 ring binders at Target in their office supply section. {You can check out other ways to organize your printable planner here.} I personally prefer using a 3 ring binder so I can easily add pages as I please. I like having the sturdy hard cover to protect my pages as well as create a hard surface for writing if I am planning on the go or on the couch with a hot cup of tea.

How To Get Stuff Done {Dolen Diaries}

Kayla’s planners have a few customizable options for example you can choose to have a meal menu added to yours or if an area to write the day’s lesson plans if you homeschool. I don’t homeschool but I love the lesson plan area for activities I want to do with my 3 yr old during the day as well as what pages and activities my 1st grader needs to work on for homework each night. If you are trying to organize more than one kiddo’s homework I recommend the lesson planning section! {If you want to order one of your own use this discount code EARLYBIRD for $3.00 off until 12/23/14}

How To Get Stuff Done {Dolen Diaries}

I keep both my planner and my dump list open on our kitchen island for quick referral as I go about the day or something pops into my mind. My phone sits by my planner to help me keep my eye on the prize and not waste a bunch of time on social media, checking e-mails, texts, etc. It’s just too tempting to get lost down the Facebook rabbit hole if it’s in my pocket. So there you have my How To Get Stuff Done tips!

How To Get Stuff Done {Dolen Diaries}

What are your How To Get Stuff Done tips!?! I’d love to hear them!!!