We spend new years with some of our close friends, and I love being at my friends’ house because there is enough room for the men to be in the den, the women to be in the dining room and the kids to be split up in in several different places doing their thing (watching movies, gaming, playing, napping,  . . . ).

Each year I have my kids think about one thing they can do better. This year my oldest decided she needed to “get her stuff together” meaning she is noticing that she needs to focus more on her academics, think about her priorities and plan for her senior year and college years instead of being absorbed in social media and hip hop culture. I thought this was pretty mature thinking on her part. I just have to figure out how to help her keep it up.

After a couple of hours on a winter break day of cleaning up the back porch and cleaning out the toy bin, my 4 Littles decided that they want to take better care of their toys.

They are kids after all, and the boys use anything to dig into the ground, including pieces and posts to the ladder ball game. So we recycled many of the pieces to incomplete games. We saved most of the rackets to the Badminton game. There were several soccer balls and footballs that made the saving cut.

The girls decided to pass on the kitchen sets and all kitchen accessories to their little nieces. I found this very compassionate and selfless.

My husband established his top 5 and inquired about mine. Here is what I finalized:

  • I want to manage my time better.
  • I want to walk/run at least 3 miles a week.
  • I want to read more.
  • I want to write more.
  • I want to cook more.
  • I want to sew more.

There is something inside me that cringes when I see this list. Each starts with “I want to” which screams selfishness to me. I know managing my time better will have great results because I can be a better example to my teenager. Plus, the husband gave me a Catholic planner, and I am so excited to use it!

My 3 miles will be difficult, and I will have every excuse in the world to postpone doing it, so I must make it a priority (more on this later).

Reading and writing are soul-worthy. I am a better person because I do these. If I do not read/write, I am not being true to myself. These are who I am. These are necessary and if neglected, create sabotage.

Finally, my sewing is my connection to the women I have lost. Sewing keeps me close to their memories. I need that connection to be a better wife, mom and person.

Do you make New Year’s Resolutions? Do you make them as a family? How do you reflect upon your year? How do you plan for a better year?