Book Review: The Winter of the Witch by Katherine Arden
Thoughts on Blogging and Writing

2019 Second Quarter Goals

Tomorrow is April first.

That just blows me away….it seems like it was just Christmas, and here we are, already one-quarter through 2019.

It seems like a good time to check in with my goals and to establish some new ones.

What I accomplished:

Hiking. In January I set the goal to hike 3 times per month. I barely fit it in, as I did my third March hike today, but I’m happy to say I accomplished this goal. One of the hikes was in a national park I’ve never been to, Congaree in South Carolina. One of my favorite hikes was the day we hiked Squaw Peak. This is a hike Kendell and I have done together many times, but it was our first time doing it in the snow and it was fairly amazing. Easier in some ways, harder in others. This was my first winter of hiking consistently and I am so happy to have discovered snow hiking.

Winter hiking

Running. I intended on trying to run three times a week, but I didn’t accomplish this goal.  Partly this is because this part of 2019 was so full of difficult things: my mom’s last illness, death, and funeral, and then the long process of going through her things. Partly it’s because I was lazy. Partly it is because I’m still figuring out my new limitations with my knees. But, I did get in at least one run every week, and several weeks had two, and a couple of weeks had three. And I’ve slowly upped my mileage, by about 3-4 miles per week on average. So, while not perfect, at least I pressed on.

Running on the prt march 2019

Writing. I started the year with a goal of writing more poetry with one of my writer friends. I wanted to write a new poem every three weeks or so, and to polish and perfect what I wrote. I wrote one and a half poems. Which is a little bit dismal, but is more than I wrote in all of 2018, so it’s a start. Again…it was a difficult three months, so I’m not going to berate myself here. Also, I was happy with the talk I wrote for my mom’s funeral. A few blog posts. Not enough writing, but I am glad I managed a little.

Reading. Here’s another ball I dropped. I intended on reading one poem a day from a print source. I went in spurts with this but never got consistent. I'm not sure why, as I read some beautiful, amazing, moving, funny, intelligent poems. I also get several poem-a-day emails, so I did still read a lot of poetry. But the "from a print source" is an important part of the goal. I interact more with a printed book than an email, especially as for this goal I am reading my own copies (rather than library books), so I can underline and write and respond.

Creativity. I made one scrapbook layout and one baby quilt. Hmmmmm...

Baby rag quilt folded

There was one goal that I failed at spectacularly. I wanted to exercise every day that Nathan was at boot camp. Not run every day, but do something. I made it five days...and then I got a cold. Three more days, then my knees were hurting. A few more, then my mom got sick. I REALLY wanted to be brave & strong for him, and out of all my goals, not accomplishing this one is the one I am most annoyed at myself for not completing.

Goals for the upcoming quarter:

Hiking. Continue with three hikes a month. This might have to be on the same trail for awhile, the rockiest one, as the trails are super muddy right now. I’m looking forward to the wildflowers starting to bloom!

Running. I am going to very carefully train for a half marathon. We’ll see how it goes, and if I have to bump down to a 10k, that will have to be OK. But I need a race to train for to keep me motivated. I also think I need to work on some of my emotions about running. I need to accept that I will likely never be able to just run, but will always have to take walking breaks. In theory I know this doesn’t make me weak, or less of a runner, but in my heart I feel like I am less of a runner. For my sanity I need to figure out how to embrace this new reality.

Writing. Two words: WRITE MORE. Also recommit to my poetry-writing friend. And apologize for being such a flake.

Reading. Take up my poem-a-day goal again. And be more devoted to books, by which I mean: leave my phone in another room when I am reading, so I don't get distracted. I only read two books a month during the first part of the year, so my reading goal is to bump it up to three a month.

Creativity. I think this fell by the side because I spent so much time working on my mom’s house. One of the biggest parts of that project was working through all of her fabric. She had so much. I took enough of her fabric to make a quilt or two. Her style was very different from mine, but I think what I will make will be a good blend of her and me. I’m excited to make it. But I also have a quilt to make for Jake and one for Kaleb, and there are FIVE upcoming babies to quilt for. So for a little while, I think scrapbooking might not happen as much. I still want to make more than just ONE layout in three months though! So, the goals: finish Jake’s quilt, Kaleb’s quilt, and the baby quilts. Spend one afternoon a week making scrapbook layouts, including printing the pictures from Christmas and our trip to South Carolina. And take more pictures!

A bonus goal: I have spent way too much money lately. Online shopping has been a sort of comfort to me. Which is dumb, of course. Especially when I think about the excess stuff at my mom’s house we had to get rid of. I don’t need anything. But there is just something about getting a package in the mail. It brightens my heart when I see something waiting for me. Scrapbook supplies, books, workout clothes, fabric. So I am setting myself the goal of NOT SHOPPING. And of using the stuff I’ve bought: make the quilts, use some pretty paper, and keep running and hiking in my beautiful new Skirt Sports skirts. HOWEVER!!! If you want to keep shopping, you should use my discount code at, because a deal AND a package on your porch is pretty awesome. The code is SSA57Amy for 15% off regular prices.

One More bonus goal: next to fall, spring is my favorite. It’s just so beautiful. So my last goal for the next three months is to savor spring. The flowers, the gardening, the return of warm sunshine. This means sitting outside to read, and talking to my trees, and keeping the blinds open and my heart wide. My mom was always happy when winter ended and spring came back, and I’m sad she didn’t get to see yellow daffodils one more time, or sit on the grass next to blooming purple hyacinths just to smell them. So I’m going to do that since she can’t.

Do you have any upcoming goals?



I love the idea of making second quarter goals! I need to do this, too. Congrats on being able to run again--what a gift for your body and for your heart. Thanks.

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