There are thousands of blog posts and articles that warn you NOT to try and do it all (and I would say that is super wise) so right up front, I want to point out that when I say my desire for 2015 is to “do it all and not grow weary” I have a very specific list of what “it all” means for me and that each of those points comes with the tagline, “but not to the extent of getting burnt out.”  In other words, I want to be intentional, but from a submissive position -- living in Grace.

What is “it all” for me?  
Well, here’s what I jotted down this December 31st, 2014.

1. To keep a clean house.
For me, this means tidying up every day. Picking things up and putting them where they go, doing the dishes, and staying on top of laundry.  These are the things my family needs. They need food and clean clothes for school and work. Picking up and having an orderly home (don’t look at my baseboards or ceiling fans. I’m talking overall to-the-naked-eye order) helps to instill a calming atmosphere and helps keeps me sane (let’s be honest, this one is totally for me.)  I’d much rather walk in the door to clean space before homework time than to be tripping over shoes and clearing off a cluttered table to make room for the school books.

2. Cook meals that are healthy and economical.
When we first got married I remember Wade and I would go to the grocery store and wander the isles, grabbing what looked good. Without a doubt, we would get home, unload all the groceries and realize: we have nothing to eat. Of course that’s not actually true, but we didn’t go shopping with a plan and often came home with an incohesive load of groceries. A few years ago I got serious and started meal planning (using Pinterest to help which makes it way more fun) and am pretty strict about only buying what’s on the list of ingredients needed for that week’s meals. I also found that this method brought my grocery bill down considerably even though I was buying more fresh meat and veggies! (hint: It’s because I was wasting less food!) Bringing the boys into our home has caused me to want to be even more economical so that when their monthly tution is due, it’s not a huge strain on our family.

3. Help the boys learn and be successful.
I really need to write the story of “the boys” in a single blog post for reference but until I do, here’s the short of it: This summer Wade and I brought two boys from Mexico into our home so they can go to school in the USA on student visas. They are spanish speaking and their school is English speaking, as is their curriculum.  We held them back a year to allow time to work on the English but even so it is a real struggle. We help with every ounce of homework and they are learning English but I want to do everything I can to give them the best chance with this opportunity.

4. To be in the Word, at all times and in all circumstances.
This should be at the top of my list, but I didn’t write these in order of importance. The Word is the foundation. If I’m not  in the Word, I feel it. I feel disconnected, down, and unproductive.  Right now I am participating in the She Reads Truth 365 plan (we are reading through the whole bible together! And it's free on their app!) I have started these types of yearly plans before and never made it far past Genesis. But something about the way She Reads Truth has layed it out to parallel with the book of John and their current devotion has really helped keep me intrigued.  I was, in fact, a few days behind last week but spent a lot of time yesterday catching up.  From the outside, it probably looks like I didn’t do much all day, but I can’t think of a better day for my spirit than being in the Word for hours on end. I ended my day feeling full and satisified. 

5. To grow in my online voice.
I’m still figuring out what exactly I mean by this. I’ve been a blogger for almost six years and I’m in this season where I feel the pull to blog for the sake of blogging less than ever. But I believe there is a mission field here online and I’m seeing a lof of it on instagram. I’m praying and thinking through what that means for my online influence (yes, I praying about instagram) and how I can best encourage others to live their lives on a mission to make much of Jesus through online avenues. 

6. To grow musically/vocally. 
I have been in some sort of worship leading/praise band scenario since early high school (for those who don’t know my age, that would be more than 15 years) and I was doing “5th sunday singin’” well before that. I have taken one semester of Chorus (which I mostly skipped) in my whole life and know 0% about reading music. When I moved to Texas and allowed me to sing with Once Prodigals, my lacking knowledge became a problem.  I’ve already learned a ton in a years time and have gained a desire to understand this gift God gave me even more.

7. Be physically fit, but not obsessed or tormented about it.
I can honestly say that for the first time in my adult life, I’m not tormented by my level of fitness. It’s not because I work out (because currently I don’t) but something changed for me when the boys came. I feel content and satisfied. I really can’t explain why, I just know it’s different. BUT. I truly believe it is important to stay healthy and active (as I’m sitting on my couch typing) and I am curious to see how working out will affect my new-found confidence non-insecurity. I gotta be honest, I have often found myself MORE tormented over everything I ate or how I looked when I was training or doing a fitness regimine. I hated that. So, a goal for this year is to get back into an excercise routine that I enjoy but that also pushes me to be stronger but to NOT let it rule my thoughts. I’ll let you know how that ones goes ;)

I want to be a woman who is in the word, who serves her family, has a teachable spirit, and is an encourager to both myself and others. And above all, to do so in His power, not in mine, so as to not let the flame burn out.