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I’m not going to set very many official goals for July.  I want to focus on just enjoying my summertime with my family and friends… and doing some crafting when it fits my schedule, because I love it.  That being said, I do want to keep a few things on the “official” list:

    • Floss each night this month.
    • Maintain the garden (and write an update post or two!).
    • Exercise at least 2 times per week (along with abs+arms every day, as possible/reasonable).
    • Make some new recipes from The Complete America’s Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook.
    • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook.
    • Do some scrapbooking, if it fits my schedule.
    • Do some sewing.  (I’ve started a new hand-stitiching project!  Remember my skirt?  Well, I’m making some throw pillows for our living room…Hand stitching will be great for being in the car, or for something to do with my hands while I hang out with friends.)  I also have a T-shirt that I’d like to alter/refashion/refit… I might have to resort to Pinterest to get a good idea of what/how I’m going to do that.
    • finish the Project 366 album.  In my June recap post, I listed my remaining “tasks,” and they should be completely manageable to accomplish this month.

That is it for now!  Happy July 🙂

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I think I did really well on my goals this past month! (my original goals/comments on the goals for June can be found HERE).  Not only did I accomplish everything on my list, but I also managed to fit in a few other projects, too.

  • Make (at least) TWO layouts this month. I made three!  See them here, here, and here.  I had a lot of fun with them and I’m excited to feel like I”m back into the swing of things with my scrapbooking.  I’m also learning to work on my paper projects only when I’m feeling inspired.  I have enough other hobbies to work on in between that I don’t need to “force” my creativity–and I’m much happier with the results. 
  • Sew fabric napkins (three sets).  Well, I only made two sets, because I liked my third fabric enough that I might make something else with it, rather than just napkins. 
  • Finish an altered photo board book for my daughter.  See it HERE.  It has been so fun to watch her connect the people in the pictures with the people she sees in “real life” or on Skype 🙂
  • Floss each night this month. Done!
  • Maintain the garden.  I owe an update post…It’s a jungle out there!
  • Exercise at least 2 times per week (along with abs+arms every day, as possible/reasonable). I logged just over 43 miles in June!  wooo hoooo!  A little over 8.5 of those miles were jogging by myself (avg. pace 9:15/mile, wow!  never thought I’d be that fast…), but the rest were walking/jogging with Vivian in her stroller.  
  • Make (at least) three new recipes from The Complete America’s Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook.  We made Slow-Roasted Beef, Rice Salad, Steak Fajitas, and Nut Crusted Chicken Breasts.
  • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook. We made the S’more Layer Cake
  • “Sort” my computer.  I made some good progress on this.  My surprisingly-vast digital scrapbooking supply collection (considering I don’t really make digital layouts) is almost transferred to an external hard drive for storage, which definitely cleared some space.  I also took care of some redundant files and sorted some photos that were “lying around loose” in my pictures folder.  The conclusion after all of this is that I still need more storage space, though!  I need to figure out how to divide my Lightroom catalog and keep part on an external hard drive. 

And the unofficial item:

  • finish the Project 366 album. I did end up working on it this month!  I have decided to split it into two binders.  I’ve purchased a second binder and hope that it comes in the mail soon!  I’ve finished all of the inserts, and I have made the two cover pages and finished the last page in the first album.  I have half of the last page in the second album to finish, plus one journal card needs to be written out (I’ve already written the text, it just needs to be copied onto the card).  I also have the backside of one insert to fill with photos.  But that is it!!  I will share my cover and last pages on the blog soon, probably.  

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June is going to be a busy month (for everyone else, too, I’m sure!).  I’m going to keep my “official” goals list short so that it is manageable, while still leaving lots of time for having fun with my family!

  • Make (at least) TWO layouts this month. Woo!  I’m getting ambitious 😉
  • Sew fabric napkins (three sets).
  • Finish an altered photo board book for my daughter.  (I started this project in May.)
  • Floss each night this month.
  • Maintain the garden.
  • Exercise at least 2 times per week (along with abs+arms every day, as possible/reasonable).
  • Make (at least) three new recipes from The Complete America’s Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook.  At the rate we’ve been going, this shouldn’t be too hard, haha!
  • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook.
  • “Sort” my computer.  I am running low on hard drive space and I need to reorganize.  It’s always at the bottom of my mental list… and here it is at the bottom of my “official” goals list– but at least it’s on a “real” list now!

If possible, but not on the “official” list:

  • finish the Project 366 album.  But I’m not putting any pressure on myself for this.  Whenever it seems fun again, I will work on it.

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It was a good month!!

  • Finish the Project 366 album.  Nope!  I didn’t even try.  And it felt great.  After a great comment that I received from Christine, I started thinking about how, right now, this album is not fun for me.  I like my crafting time to be fun.  The important parts of the album are finished, so I decided to just let this goal go in May.  So for the whole month, I didn’t touch the album (other than to take some photos–see below–and move it off of my craft table!).  And I am a lot happier for it.  Perhaps I will finish it up in June, we’ll see.
    • write a blog post about one or two of my favorite inserts.  DONE.  Not sure if I will post more, yet.
    • write a blog post about the weekly title cards.  Photos are taken and awaiting editing.  Still need to write this post!  It will happen in June!
  • Make ONE layout this month and/or finish the Iowa mini album.   I made two!!  Niagara Falls and Wharton Escherick/Valley Forge.  Man, it felt good.  I can’t wait to make more!  I also made two cards.  PLUS, I am thisclose to finishing the Iowa album [edited 6/4/2013 to add: the Iowa mini is finished! I will have a post about it soon].
  • Floss each night this month. Done!
  • Maintain the garden. Done!  See an update post HERE.  We also added a compost bin.  
  • Exercise at least 2 times per week (along with abs+arms every day, as possible/reasonable).  Done.  I logged 33.75 total miles in May, and over 5 of those miles were jogging… and using the MapMyRun app, I discovered that my average jogging pace was <10 min/mile!  Incredible.  I never thought I’d jog that fast.
  • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Complete America’s Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbookoooooh, we had some good food again this month!  Baked ZitiBeef StroganoffArroz con PolloCreamy Tomato Sauce.  Looks like we’re averaging about one new recipe per week!
  • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook.  I loved these Whole Lemon Bars!
  • Finish the fabric alphabet magnets for Vivian.  DONE!  (6/6/2013: I even made some extra letters, including two more “E”s, yesterday)
  • Hem and hang the Ikea Lenda curtains for the living room.  Done!  It totally changed the look of the room, and I LOVE THEM.

Aside from the (purposeful) fail on the Project 366 goal, May was an incredibly productive month!  It looks like the Project 366 was damming up my creative juices.  I am so glad that I put it off for now.  I know it will get finished eventually, so I’m not going to worry about it.

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Here’s how I did.

First, the “official” goals:

  • Finish all the extra inserts for the Project 366 album.  I am sooooooo close to finishing them.  I don’t even know how many photos I edited and printed for the inserts that I had left to do, but I do know that I ordered a set of 80 4×6 prints (some with multiple photos collaged onto them) in order to finish them.  I still have some title cards to cut out with my Silhouette and some journaling cards to print (but we ran out of printer ink.  Wop wop.)  It turns out that each one of these inserts was like a scrapbook layout (or two).  If I’ve put this much effort into the album thus far, I am certainly not going to cut corners now.  I might actually post about one or two of the inserts because I’m very pleased with how they turned out.
    • write a blog post about the weekly title cards: Nope.  Not yet.  I was too busy working on the inserts!  But I still would like to do one.
  • Make ONE layout this month.  Sadly, this did not happen (those inserts again…but I did make a tag!), but see below.
  • Floss each night this month.  Done!
  • Plant the garden!  Done!!
  • Exercise at least 2 times per week (along with abs+arms every day, as possible/reasonable). Done.  I logged 38.74 total miles in April (I use the MapMyRun app), and of those miles, 12.86 miles were me jogging/running.  I’m kinda proud of myself for getting back into running a bit!
  • New recipes from The Complete America’s Test Kitchen TV Show CookbookWe made asparagus pasta, oven-BBQ chicken, sauteed spinach, and lemon layer cake
  • New recipe from The Smitten Kitchen CookbookWe made asparagus pizza and broccoli slaw
  • Finish all the PhD ornaments for people on my waiting list.  Done.  And now I have more requests coming in.  Must be graduation season!
  • Work on (and hopefully finish??) fabric alphabet magnets for Vivian.  I did stitch together at least five letters per week– until I ran out of magnets–and I’m at the letter “O.”  I recently got another big package of magnets, so hopefully I”ll be able to finish them up in May.
  • Try to find fabric for living room curtains/Decide on what style curtains I will make.  After looking into fabrics and discussing things with Husband, we decided that we really just want plain white curtains after all.  I loved the curtains we had in (and left with) our previous house, so we decided to get the same ones for this house.  A trip to Ikea was part of my birthday festivities, and we picked up three pairs of Lenda curtains.  I love them!  We also scored some clearance curtain rods at Home Depot (on a trip for garden supplies!), so our living room window treatment makeover has been a lot less expensive than I expected.  Hurray!

Unofficial/next-in-line goals:

  • Think about purchasing the Clean Color for Lightroom class.  I would love to take this class, I just need to figure out whether I realistically have time for it right now.
  • Work on the mini-album from our trip to Iowa in 2012.  One Saturday in April, there was a gathering of ladies at our church to work on crafts together, and I decided that this would be a great project to bring, since it was pretty self-contained.  I spent a few hours ahead of time writing out all of the journaling onto the journaling tags I’d stamped and sorting the photos into the proper order.  I was able to adhere the majority of the photos and journaling into the mini book (and make quite a few extra pages– I have a LOT of photos!!) that afternoon.  There’s still quite a bit of work to go, but I made some really good progress on the album.

In summary:  I think I did pretty well with my goals.  I have to admit that I’m really disappointed that I didn’t get any “real” scrapbooking done (where “real”= 12×12 layouts).  I really, really miss scrapbooking.  I am not fond of pocket scrapbooking, and I am really looking forward to finishing the Project 366 album so that I can get it off my mind.  I’m one of those people who has a hard time moving onto a new project when there’s an unfinished one lingering in the background.  Hopefully May is the month the album finally gets done!

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Hmm.  It looks like this month’s goals are pretty similar to previous months’…

  • Finish the Project 366 album.  Inserts.  Title page.  Last page.  (pleasepleasepleaseplease let it get finished!)
    • write a blog post about one or two of my favorite inserts
    • write a blog post about the weekly title cards.
  • Make ONE layout this month and/or finish the Iowa mini album.   I hope that I’ll be able to get back into the swing of 12×12 scrapbooking more frequently.  I do miss it so much.
  • Floss each night this month.
  • Maintain the garden.
  • Exercise at least 2 times per week (along with abs+arms every day, as possible/reasonable).
  • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Complete America’s Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook.
  • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook.
  • Finish the fabric alphabet magnets for Vivian.
  • Hem and hang the curtains for the living room.

Nothing too exciting this month!  I’m hoping that May is the month that sees the Project 366 album finished, and then I can venture onto new things.

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There is a really beautiful park nearby, and I’ve been going there to walk the almost-2.5 mile loop around the lake with Vivian.  On Monday, I decided it would be interesting to try and take a photo in the same spot each time I go this spring.  I hope to go frequently, and it will be neat to see the park’s transformation through spring.

For some reason, my camera phone was acting very sluggish (perhaps because I had an app running that uses GPS to track my distance/time?).  I snapped a few photos as I walked, and when I came back home, I took a look at them.  Most of them were pretty normal, but I thought this one was particularly interesting.  I must have swung the phone down as the photo was being recorded.  What is most intriguing to me is that the picture is in focus throughout the curve!

Just thought I’d share this accidentally interesting photo! 🙂

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A new month means a new set of goals!

  • Finish all the extra inserts for the Project 366 album.  It’s about time to finish this baby up.
    • write a blog post about the weekly title cards
  • Make ONE layout this month.  As usual, more if possible, but the Project 366 goal above takes priority.
  • Floss each night this month.
  • Plant the garden!  The last-frost date for this area is April 11!  Hurray!!
  • Exercise at least 2 times per week (along with abs+arms every day, as possible/reasonable).
  • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Complete America’s Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook.
  • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook.
  • Finish all the PhD ornaments for people on my waiting list.
  • Work on (and hopefully finish??) fabric alphabet magnets for Vivian.  I’m making enough multiples of each letter that she can spell her full name (and some others).  Maybe to be more specific and intentional, I’ll try to stitch together at least five letters per week.  That means at least 20 magnets will be finished by the end of April.
  • Try to find fabric for living room curtains.  I have an “ideal” in mind, but I haven’t really found it yet (my search hasn’t been too serious yet).
    • Decide on what style curtains I will make.

Other things I’d like to do…but I’m not going to “officially” include them on my list (but they are still written down!), so as not to overwhelm myself completely.  But just in case, these are things that I want to do next:

Let’s see how April goes!!

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So, at the beginning of March, I said that I was trying to keep the list on the “not-impossible-to-accomplish side.”   Let’s see how I did…

  • Finish the Project 366 albumSpecifically: finish the weekly title cards and weekly filler cards.  Done!!!  I spent hours and hours (ridiculous, I know) on this.  I hope to write a blog post about these weekly title cards, since I designed Silhouette cut files for many of them.  There are still some inserts that need to be filled in, but that is “optional” for this month.
  • Make ONE layout this month.  Done!  I made a two-page layout that I absolutely love about a day-trip into Washington, D.C. in 2009.
  • Floss each night in March.  I missed one night.  Bummer.  But I was very, very sick, and flossing just wasn’t going to happen.
  • Figure out planting dates for my seeds.  Seeds plantedSprouts growing!
  • Exercise at least 2 times per week (along with abs+arms every day, as possible/reasonable).  For the most part, I accomplished this goal.  (There was a week where I didn’t really exercise because I’d been ill and wanted to give my body a chance to recover.)  In March, I walked 9.2 miles at an average pace of about 4.5 mph.  My Fitness Pal has also been an incredibly effective tool.  I’m pretty sure that by my birthday (near the end of April), I will have met and (hopefully) dipped below my original goal weight.  Yay!
  • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Complete America’s Test Kitchen TV Show CookbookWe made six new recipes: stuffed pork chops, gravy, & glazed carrots, chicken enchiladas, key lime pie, and classic mac & cheese
  • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Smitten Kitchen CookbookWe made blueberry cake, sadly unsuccessfully. 
  • Continue working on PhD ornaments for people on my waiting list.  Done!!  I made three this month, and by now I’ve made (or attempted to make) contact with all of the people on my waiting list.
  • Continue organizing my craft room.  At least get my paper into holders.  Possibly figure out which slots should hold the bins I already own so that I know whether I need to get more (and how many).  Sort of done.  I got more paper holders and I labeled the shelves so I know where bins will go.  I’m using 5 bins I already owned.  I’ll do a craft room progress blog post soon!

I didn’t manage to accomplish anything on my “optional” list.  It makes me sad, because I’m excited about those projects, but I am pleased that I did so well with my main goals for March!  Stay tuned for my April goals list.

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I’m trying to keep the list on the not-impossible-to-accomplish side of things this month…

  • At the risk of sounding like a broken record…finish the Project 366 album.  Specifically: finish the weekly title cards and weekly filler cards.  There are still some inserts that need to be filled in, but that is “optional” for this month.
  • Make ONE layout this month.  Again, more if possible, but the Project 366 goal above takes priority.
  • Floss each night this month.
  • Figure out planting dates for my seeds.  And probably plant them!
  • Exercise at least 2 times per week (along with abs+arms every day, as possible/reasonable).
  • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Complete America’s Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook.
  • Make (at least) one new recipe from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook.
  • Continue working on PhD ornaments for people on my waiting list.
  • Continue organizing my craft room.  At least get my paper into holders.  Possibly figure out which slots should hold the bins I already own so that I know whether I need to get more (and how many).

Other things I’d like to do…but I’m not going to “officially” include them on my list (but they are still written down!), so as not to overwhelm myself completely.  But just in case, these are things that I want to do next:

  • Project 366 inserts
  • make more plans for the living room curtains
  • work on the fabric alphabet magnets I started for Vivian (in April 2012!).  She’s getting really interested in letters already, so I want to finish them up so we can play with them!

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