{to a simple 2013}

Last year I made a resolution to myself to live more simply. I did so amazing for the first half of the year. Then we moved into a new home, had a baby, and things got more complex.

This year I resolve to live simple again.  Cut out the excess in life; who needs it? I know that my family and I can live without it.

In 2013 I resolve to:

Create Homemade Meals - This has always been tough for me, but now that I am taking the semester off from school and will begin paying back those student loans, I think it is high time that I make real use of my kitchen, crock pot, stove, and oven.  Right now we are getting the oven fixed, and when it's done I'm going to be a baking queen.  Preparing meals at home will make it much easier to enjoy family time and help save money.

Learn to Cook - To go along with making dinner at home, I am going to learn some new recipes and try to cook from scratch. I made a delicious Broccoli and Cheese soup the other night from scratch, and it was pretty easy! I plan to make time for real dinner at my house. That means fewer chicken nugget meals and dinners out for this family!

Read for Pleasure - For the past 8 years I've had my head stuck in textbooks.  Now that I'm done with school and taking a small break from my master's, I am FINALLY reading books that I WANT to read.  I just finished The Turning: What Curiousity Kills by Helen Ellis, and I am currently reading the Hunger Games. Yes I've jumped on that bandwagon.

Have Date Night - I will make more time for my husband.  It is so hard for us to have alone time; the kids sleep in our room, so you know what I am talking about, right? Well I think it is important for us to have nights to ourselves, to enjoy each other's company alone every once in a while. I plan to enjoy my sweet husband a little more and get to know him better, even if it is just one night each month, dinner and a movie or a fun date.

Bring Back Game Night - Gavin and I used to love hosting game night when our friends came to town.  Well since I got pregnant at we moved we haven't hosted a game night in a long time.  We have the perfect home for hosting since it is so large, and well I want to see my friends more often!! Game night is back, and we will get started in January!

Save Money -  We need to replenish our savings this year from the toll it took last year.  We have a long way to go to get it back where it was but I have a feeling that we can do it. I want to pay down the little debt that we have and help us to stay on track with needs not wants.  It will be so nice to give ourselves a small allowance to work with and then everything else to daycare, bills, groceries, house, savings, etc.

Rediscover Couponing - I used to be a coupon master, and then life got crazy and I had less and less time to spend on couponing.  Well now I have time. I will make it. In order to make amazing dinners at home, I need to relearn how to coupon correctly and get my grocery budget down from the 600-800 a month it is now to $200 a month it used to be (or less when it was just 3 of us).

Scrapbook - I will make more time for my lovely hobby. I've been great about making time for myself once per month, but this year I really slacked on my hobby. I have such a great scrapbook room and it gets little use. I plan to use it and make at least 2 layout per week.

Take and Print Photos - With that, there are tons of photos from 2012, that I haven't scrapped. I need to get these memories on paper!! I plan to scrap through 2011 and 2012 to get closer to now.

Play with my Babies - I need to slow down and make more time to play with my little ones. They are only little for a small while, and it is so important to play with them and read to them.  I'm going to be a little crazy with my kiddos and take them on small dates.  They will enjoy this, and I know that I will too.

Lose 10 lbs - I am certainly not a dieter, and I don't work out, but I do plan to watch what I eat and drink more water so that I can lose this last 10 lbs that I've been struggling with. Since starting my new job I've lost a few lbs, but since the holidays my clothes are feeling tighter, and I'm feeling pressure to lose this weight. I feel rather unhealthy, and I am not in love with my body right now. Ten lbs should do the trick. It's may not seem like a lot to many, but that is a lot for me. I would rather do so many things than workout or count calories. Don't know how I will manage this weight loss, but it will come.  I am just going to be patient, keep using the stairs, keep watching what I am eating, cut out a few things I should've be eating/drinking, and maybe do a bit of jogging. There is a perfect running trail by my house. I want to compete in a 5k with husband. That is my goal.

Learn Something New - I haven't decided what I am going to learn. I guess I am relearning couponing, but I should learn something new in addition to that. We are planning to makeover some rooms in our home, so maybe I'll learn something in the process! There are lots of projects to be done on this old house! Our first makeover for 2013 will be to paint the kitchen and replace light fixtures. I'm super excited about this!!

Live Simply - Overall my goal for 2013 is to live simply. Simple living is the best, I started out on a track last year, but lost my way. I am finding my way back. The last few weekends have been spend cleaning and reorganizing our house. Our garage is filled to the brim with stuff that needs to go. Part of my simple living philosophy is to save money, learn patience, spend time with the kids, clean out the clutter, repurpose, and slow down.

These are my goals for 2013. I do hope that you all had a blessed 2012 like I did; I am looking forward to what the future holds for me and my family.

With Love,
Gabrielle Watson