I don’t typically make what you might call “resolutions” at the New Year, like “stop biting my nails” or “lose 10 pounds!” But I do find myself compiling a list of goals or projects or things I’d like to do in the coming months once the calendar switches over. It’s arbitrary, the whole I’m Gonna Do This After January 1st! thing, but for whatever reason, the mental break point of After The Holidays always works for me. So! Here are seven things I want to do this year.
1. Have my last baby. This is kind of a no-brainer at this point, given that I’m headed into the home stretch of pregnancy (13 weeks to go!!) It’s, uh, happening. My goal/hope is to deliver a healthy baby boy (!) and to have as uneventful and “normal” a labor as I did with the girls. And… hopefully pick a name for this poor kid. That’s more of an immediate goal, of course. And I’m hopeful that breastfeeding will go as well as it did with Audrey (at least as well as it did until I went back to work and she decided that the bottle was where it was AT.)
2. Replace our front porch. Last spring we had our deck rebuilt (best idea EVER!) and this spring, it’s looking more and more like we’re going to be doing a similar thing to our front porch.
This is actually more of a necessity than a It Would Be Really Nice If kinda thing, because the porch is ROTTING OFF THE FRONT OF THE HOUSE. We knew it was getting kinda bad last fall, and that it needed maybe a new coat of paint and a few things fixed. But then winter came and went, then spring, and summer… and now it’s just BAD. Huge chunks of paint missing. Rotting, water-damaged “wood” at the bottom of the support posts (I have wood in quotes because it’s freaking MADE OF PAPER, YOU GUYS. GAH.) The water damage is so bad that when it was really wet last spring, mushrooms were sprouting from the “wood” that rests on the concrete. Ridiculous. And just last month when Dan climbed up on the balcony roof to hang the Christmas lights, he leaned on the railing up there and it MOVES. So, basically, the entire thing is wet and rotting and just needs torn down and rebuilt. Not exactly a super fun project, and not a cheap one either, but we can’t avoid it anymore. When spring comes, this is Priority #1.
3. Repaint the powder room. I’ve been wanting to do this house project since we moved in over three years ago, but since then, I’ve spent a lot of time either pregnant or caring for a small, helpless, needy baby. Oh, and working. And when I did have time for projects, we did other rooms (dining room, the office, etc) The color of the walls is fine- dark green, quite pretty- but it’s chipped in a few spots and wouldn’t you know it’s the ONE paint color the previous owners didn’t leave in the garage? So I’ve just been ignoring the spots needing touch-ups. But I have plans! It could be SO CUTE!
Paint the vanity! Add some shelves! New countertop to replace the boring, construction-grade, white laminate top! A new, pretty mirror! New paint on the walls! It’s a very small room so the work shouldn’t take too long, it’s just finding the time and inspiration and energy to actually DO it. THIS IS THE YEAR
4. Organize All The Things. I’ve already gotten a bit of a jumpstart on this one and it’s only January 7! WHERE IS MY COOKIE? So many little nooks in this house are just filled with Stuff and it’s time to make an honest effort at getting them in order. Maggie and I tackled the coloring/craft cabinet a few weeks ago (and believe it or not, it still looks pretty good!) And last week I organized all the girls’ bajillions of hair things into a hanging organizer in their bathroom. So easy and so cute! (yay Pinterest for these ideas!) But the biggest job looming is our office. No matter what we do, that room somehow becomes the dumping ground for everything that doesn’t fit anywhere else, and quickly turns into The Room Of Shame. I spent about four hours in there yesterday, sorting the big junk and filing papers that were stacked on the desk (from over 12 months ago, OMG HOW EMBARRASSING!) and it’s looking better! But there are still piles of things to be donated and garbaged and organized, not to mention the Closet Of Shame And Doom which I’m purposely saving for last because I’m dreading it. heh. And then after THAT room is done, there are 8,719 bins of girls’ baby and toddler clothes in the basement that can be sorted and prepped for giving away to… someone, at some point. And then the pantry! And the garage! And and and… (SO MUCH ORGANIZING CAN YOU TELL I’M PREGNANT AND POSSIBLY NESTING? The baby cares about our organized soup cans, you know.)
5. Take a family beach vacation again. For several years in a row, we went to the Outer Banks for vacation with friends, then with Maggie when she was a wee teeny thing, up until I was pregnant with Audrey. Then we decided that instead of driving 10+ hours to the beach where our crawling 9 month old would eat sand, we’d skip the beach and do something closer to home and more mellow (indoor water park and nearby amusement park weekend getaway!) And this past year, we stole the girls’ vacation and went on a cruise without them for our anniversary (haaa SUCKAS!) So we would really love to get back to the beach as a family this summer. Which probably sounds NUTSO considering we’ll have a four-month-old. But I really think it will be great- a MUCH better age for a baby at the beach than crawling, for SURE. And we’ll have some helpers there with us and the girls are at the perfect age for beach fun! (Plus we have a van with tv screens now so woooohooo! Road trip!)
6. Start running again. Eventually. This time last year, I could run 3 miles in about 40 minutes without much effort. Today? I walked upstairs to quickly and got out of breath and had to sit down for a five minute break. Ah, pregnancy! Originally I thought to myself, I’m gonna run my first 5K before the end of 2013! Then I came to my senses and remembered that not being pregnant anymore also means that I’ll have an actual BABY to care for, plus two other kids… so my training time will be limited, obviously. But I’m determined to at least START ON MY WAY to running again- probably some walking this spring with the baby (yay babywearing!) and working my way up to running and probably doing the Couch To 5K program again (which I loved and helped me so much!) One benefit to another spring baby is being able to be OUTSIDE and DO THINGS when he’s little, as opposed to the first 6 months of Audrey’s life where we were stuck inside all winter. I plan to take advantage.
7. Enjoy the summer. Normally I’d be planning to start working again 10-12 weeks after the baby is born, but that puts things right about when Maggie will be out of school for the summer. Which would mean if I wanted to work for real, I’d have to pay for three kids to go to daycare for the summer and… oh you guys. No way am I doing that. It just doesn’t make financial sense- I don’t think I’d make enough to cover the bill! Plus, when I really thought about it, I realized that this IS my last baby, and I have an opportunity and the flexibility to decide when I come back to work and I’d like to enjoy things as much as I can. So I’ll be waiting until September when Maggie starts first grade (!!!) to work again. Audrey will likely still be in SOME kind of daycare a couple of days each week, mainly to keep her in the habit and get her ready for preschool (possibly) in the fall (!!!), but the rest of the week, it will be me and three children at home. All the time. Alone. I’m… kinda scared, you guys. I’m not USED TO IT. But another large part of me is really excited. I really would love to make up for the fact that last summer was kind of lame and spend lots of time outside and soaking up my babies- all three of them.
(My disclaimer to all of this? I learned this year that plans can and will change (um, DUH.) So I reserve the right to forgive myself if I’m still looking at messy cabinets and a green, paint-chipped bathroom when 2014 rolls around. As long as I’ve spent some good, quality time hanging out with my kids? I’ll call 2013 WIN.)