Free Printable and Mid-Year Goal Reflection

It’s JUNE. I know we say “time is going by so fast” often, but seriously, what happened to the first half of this year?!

I made myself a little sign for motivation, then I figured that you might like it too.

 To download the 8×10 size, click on the link at the bottom of this post.

Since the year is half gone, it’s time to take a look at my New Year’s Resolutions. One of the reasons I think many people fail to keep their resolutions is that they make them and then forget them until December rolls around. Also, I’m a believer in flexible resolutions, because you never know what road blocks can come up in a year!  Instead of getting discouraged and throwing out all resolutions, I’m resolved to revise as needed to keep stretching myself while being realistic. 

This is what I resolved in January, soon after my aunt passed way from cancer:

Others Goals:

  • Eat out less, have people over more. We have had people over more often than last year, but we still eat out too much. Trying to get down to once a week.
  • Reach out the the community regularly with the youth group (hopefully once a month). Brian and I finally sat down and made a schedule, so for the summer, we will have monthly outreaches. If we have another planning session for the fall, I think we’ll be able to keep it up.
  • Go to Mexico on the church mission trip (taking place in March)Did it!
  • Take time to celebrate my friendships and let people know how much I appreciate them. I’m still not doing well at sending cards and calling people, although in the last month I actually sent Mother’s Day cards (though late), two birthday cards, and letters to my brothers just because. This one definitely needs to stay on my resolutions list to keep working on.

Personal Goals:

  • Make my wedding scrapbook, preferably before our two year anniversary in June. I started working on it on Memorial Day, and put together two pages. I’m not too confident I’ll finish it by June 19th, but maybe by the end of the year. 
  • Make more art and crafts (this will happen this semester since I’m taking a drawing class) Finished drawing class, and still drawing in my free time.
  • Keep blogging šŸ™‚ I slowed down quite a bit from my usual schedule for a few months, but I’ve picked it back up now. 
  • Grow as a writer and designer by learning new skills in school and seeking to get published. I have grown in my skills, and I have specific plans to continue growing.
  • Get published in something. Hasn’t happened yet.
  • Graduate college (this will happen in May!) Yep!

Physical Goals:

  • Do Jillian Michaels – 30 Day Shred (time to be determined, probably Jan-Feb.)
  • Exercising all year, keeping the goal of 3 times a week. I’ve been doing really well with exercise this year, although Brian being unemployed made it tons easier to find motivation since I had someone to work out with. I’ve been slacking off since he want back to work, and I’ve got to find a new way to stay motivated!
  • Take care of my health by seeking to eat balanced meals and going to the doctor/dentist/dermatologist regularly (and get Brian to go too). When Brian lost his job, we didn’t have health insurance. Our new insurance won’t start for a couple months, so this will have to wait. 

New Goals

I’ve expanded my goals and made the existing goals more specific. Here’s what I have now:

Spiritual

  • Read new devotional books regularly
  • Work on discovering my passions and purpose
  • Journal at least once a week
  • Have daily devotions
  • Serve at church

Self

  • Graduate from college
  • Grow as a designer
  • Grow as a writer
    • Send 2 or more queries a month
    • Write two or more articles per month
    • Get published šŸ˜€
  • Make arts and crafts
    • Wedding Scrapbook
    • Personal scrapbook
    • Drawing class
    • Make curtains for my office
    • Headboard for our bedroom
    • Pillow cases for our bedroom
  • Grow my blogs
    • Set up Newlywed’s Bliss contributor system
      • Email possible contributors
      • Set up accounts and schedules
    • Write and submit guest posts
    • Blog 3 times a week on Scribbles From Emily
    • Blog once a week on Newlywed’s Bliss
    • Grow Scribbles followers to 300
    • Grow NB followers to 100
  • Read
  • Physical
    • Keep working out three times a week
    • Eat balanced meals, restricting processed foods
    • Visit the doctor, dentist, dermatologist

Others

  • Celebrate my friendships and let people know I appreciate them
    • Write Edward (my brother)
    • Write Eric (my brother)
    • Write Bessi (our sponsored child)
    • Talk to Evi, Elissa, mom and dad regularly
  • Go on weekly dates with Brian
  • Eat out less, have people over once a month
  • Go to Mexico
  • Help with VBS
    • Teaching or assistant teaching the pre-primaries
    • Movie and photography highlights from the summer
  • Volunteer at church
    • Update and manage the website 
    • Design brochures
    • Design visitor packet
  • Youth Group
    • Plan monthly activities
    • Help promote activities
    • Girl’s Bible Study?
    • Youth Group Blog

Wow… it looks a little ambitious. But I have a plan – at the beginning of each month I’ll pick certain objectives from each category to focus on. At the beginning of each week, I’ll pick some of those objectives to tackle. I can break bigger tasks into week long chunks, and then into pieces small enough to get done in a day.

So, it’s going to be vital that I seize the day!

Download the PDF here. 
Download the image file here.

If you’d like to just make the most of your summer, you might like this printable from Passion And Purpose:

Check it out here: Summer Planning Sheet.

Are you re-evaluating or checking up on your New Year’s resolutions? What’s on your bucket list for summer? 

Linking up here today:

My Christmas Present to You!

Remember a few weeks back when I said on facebook that if you answered the question “What’s your favorite Christmas song?” you’d get a Christmas present from me?

Well, here it is! How about some Christmas decor that will have you humming your favorite Christmas tunes every time you see it? Enjoy this Christmas song printable, made just for you by me. Just go to the Free Stuff page, follow the links, download your choice of color schemes, and print. I printed mine on 8×10 cardstock, but you could send it to Walmart or Costco for inexpensive printing too.

Merry Christmas!
A penny for your thoughts? To leave a comment, click on “Links to this Post” below.

I’m A Cheap Valentine: How we celebrated with $17

Many people don’t like Valentine’s Day because it’s pricey- gifts often include perfumes, jewelry, and bouquets of roses. Prices for everything romantically related, especially roses, skyrockets. With a little creativity, it doesn’t have to be expensive at all; in fact, you could do Valentine’s Day for almost free! 

I started off Valentine’s Day with a doctor appointment:  not my idea of fun! But thanks to some wonderful blogs, websites, and my friendly neighborhood Goodwill, I’d already prepared for our celebration.

The Decorations
You might have already seen my “Easy Valentine’s Day Banner” that I posted about earlier this month.

This didn’t cost me anything, since I used scrapbooking paper I already had and the free hearts printable from At Second Street
I also printed the Valentine subway art from the blog eighteen25, and put it on the bookshelf in the dining room.

I used the print I made, of the adorable owl. You can download it for free, just go to my “Free Stuff” link in the top left corner of the blog. 
Owl image from The Graphics Fairy.
I was going to make these, also from eighteen25, but I never got around to it. It would have also been “free” since I already have all the things I’d need to make them. 
I think I still will make them, because really, that’s a message that can stay up for longer than just February!

What’s Valentine’s Day without roses?

When I was too sick to go to church Sunday, and had to stay in bed and work on school work, Brian bought me the most gorgeous rose! I put it in a recycled bottle and arranged it on our coffee table.

I found these wooden letters at Goodwill! They were 99 cents each, and they’ll look wonderful year round! (In the background is an art easel I also bought, but I didn’t use it for anything related to Valentine’s Day, in case you’re wondering.)

 The Presents
I printed these free valentine’s from Peptogirl, gave some away, and hid some around the apartment for Brian to find. My favorites are “Just My Type,” “Sew in Love,” and “Owl be yours.” Too cute! I snuck some into his lunch box, I taped one to his computer, and one to his shaving cream.

I also printed this adorable valentine and wrote a message to him inside. This valentine was also free, and I got it from mmmcrafts.

{What can I say? I love puns!}

For Brian’s main gift, I was inspired by “How To Make A Marriage Bed” from A Holy Experience. I shared the link to this post before, so if you’ve read it, you’ll remember the letter to Ann Landers. Ann Voskamp shared a letter to Ann Landers from a daughter writing about her very-much-in-love parents. Every time they made love  they put a dollar into a box, saving for their dream trip. On their 50th anniversary they went on a second honeymoon to Hawaii.

I found the perfect box at Goodwill for $2.99.

The quilted top had to go. With a screwdriver, it was easy to bend back the metal prongs holding it in the back, and take out the top. I replaced it with scrapbooking paper, a wedding picture of us, and a sticker, all of which I already had.
I wanted to protect the picture, so I used a clear scrapbooking protective sleeve, slipped the wooden top with the paper and picture on it inside, and cut off the edges. 
I copied and pasted the letter from Ann’s post into a Word document and printed it out. I slipped it in the inside of the lid. 
The Plan
I really wanted to go on a picnic, so I  thought about going up to Canyon Lake again, but remembered we’d have to buy a pass, and I didn’t want to mess with that. So I did some research and found a nice park not to far away with nice picnic areas, grassy slopes, and a lake. Perfect! 
I wrote the directions from Google maps on pink sticky notes and placed them inside an envelope. I added a leaf that happened to fall off of the rose; it was supposed to be a clue, signifying that we were going somewhere outside. 
I decorated the outside with a number one, and I incorporated the “bon appetit” scroll from these free printables for a picnic at home from Eat, Drink, Chic. There’s two of them, and you’re supposed to attach them to your silverware, but I liked how it looked on the envelope. Plus, it was another clue for Brian!

 After our picnic, Brian was supposed to open the second envelope. In this one, I had this sticky note:

Unfortunately, by the time we got to the park, it was dark. It was really too bad, because I had outfits picked out and ideas for the pictures, and it would have been so cute! Next time, I guess!

 So Brian opened the third card. In this card, I put the rest of the free printables for the picnic at home: the heart and movie tickets.

Eat Drink Chic
We didn’t have take-out or champagne, but it was close enough!
Eat Drink Chic
I‘d been awhile since I got a musical/Disney movie fix… Enchanted fit the bill perfectly. Plus, we watched that movie the evening after Brian proposed to me, and Brian gave it to me on our first Valentine’s Day together as a dating couple. 
Unfortunately, Brian isn’t as musical and Disney crazy or sentimental as I am, and he didn’t want to watch it. Instead, we lit candles, cuddled, and read books and magazines together, which was still nice!

I’m really proud of the numbers… I drew them free-hand. 
This is what Brian saw when he came home from work.

 The Food
When he walked through the door, The kitchen was covered in powdered sugar, and I was wearing an apron, mixing frosting, looking a little flustered. In my mind, I had the ideal cupcake: tall, soft confetti cake, topped with fluffy pale pink frosting and adorable paper toppers, TomKat Studio style.

TomKat, Ice Cream Shoppe Party
I suppose that was a bit unrealistic. 
First, I only had three cupcake liners. Second, I was short one egg. Third, the cupcakes turned out really…flat. Like, maybe two inches tall. Fourth, I had to cut the frosting recipe in half, because I didn’t have enough butter. Fifth, the frosting turned out so runny, I literally dipped the cupcakes in it, because it was impossible to spread, and it was a bright, Peptobismol pink. When it actually dripped off the cupcakes, I scraped it all off and added almost the entire bag of powdered sugar to thicken it, and re-frosted them. 
It was STILL runny, as you can see. But it made a nice glaze. 
I finished the cupcakes with free paper cupcake toppers from the blog Free Pretty Things For You. I printed the circles, cut them out, taped toothpicks to the back of each one, and inserted into the cupcake.

the sugar sign is from Eat Drink Chic

On the cupcake to the left, you can see how runny the frosting was, and the remains of the first batch. Notice how flat they are? I substituted 150 ml of milk for the missing egg. Someone online said it would work, and I believed them.

Even in their imperfection, they’re still kinda cute.
For our picnic, I made jello and egg salad sandwiches, and used pink plastic plates and cups that I had left-over from my bachelorette party last spring. 

The day after Valentine’s Day, we went to Walgreens to pick up my prescription from the day before. Of course, all the Valentine’s stuff was 50% off, so Brian picked out a classic gift for me: a heart shaped box of chocolates, complete with a picture of a puppy, for $1.50. I bought myself this little rose plant for $2. 
So, the total price for Valentine’s Day: $16.50. The most expensive and least useful cost was the rose, which cost $6. Compare that to my plant, which will last longer, for $2. 
Moral of the story: 
  • As far as gifts go, it is the thought that counts! It doesn’t have to be expensive to be perfect.
  • As far as decorations go, you can find great stuff online for free! 
  • And, you’ll never have to buy Valentine’s again; there are SO many blogs and sites that offer them for free!
  • After Valentine’s Day, get ready for next year! 
  • When you look at the stuff that’s 50% off, think about how you could re-purpose it for Mother’s Day or a birthday coming up.  

How did you celebrate Valentine’s Day? Did you use any free stuff or thrifty finds? Tell us about it!

Valentines For Everyone {including a free one for you!}

Hallmark and Hollywood try to make Valentine’s Day exclusive to couples and all about buying expensive gifts. That’s never been my philosophy.

I’ve never thought of Valentines Day as being all about your significant other. Ever since I was a kid, I would make valentines for my family, and when I was older, I made them for my friends. As a teenager, friends and I had a tradition of making valentines for everyone in the youth group.

So I look at it as a day to tell all the special people in your life that you love them, and that they matter. If you have a significant other, that’s a message I hope you’ll convey to them, but don’t leave out your kids, parents, or friends. Valentine’s Day should be for the whole family!

Yes, it’s horribly commercialized, but I’m still grateful that someone started the holiday. Like Thanksgiving, I don’t want to just celebrate on one day a year, but I’m grateful for the structure of having one day totally devoted to showing love.

In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, it would be a travesty if I didn’t give you, my readers, a valentine! I made one just for you!

owl image from The Graphics Fairy

I also made an 8×10 printable of this cute little owl. This is where I put mine.

Happy Valentine’s Day! Share the love, and pass this love bird on to the love birds in your life!


Download the valentines HERE. Download the 8×10 HERE.


If you have any trouble or any questions about downloading the documents, email me at emi_jo08(at)hotmail(dot)com.

{Edit: I’ve added a more boyish valentine! Download it HERE}

If you’re still looking for something to show your love to all the special people in your life, I’ve got some ideas for you!

For Kids

Children's Boxed Valentines- Sweet Sprinkles - 34 Cards
Love Bug Ruffled Onesie, Sweet Birdie Boutique $12.00

For Him

Mr. & Mrs. - Coupon Book

These coupons are awesome! The sample one on the website says, “I’m making a special effort today to pray for you,” and they include scripture on each coupon.

Mr. Love Notes - 32 Note Set

Mr. Love Notes – 32 Note Set $4.99

Get “The Masculine Mandate: God’s Calling to Men” from Ligonier.org. Only $10.80 when you use ‘SPRING10’ at checkout. Shop now!
Hardcover $12.00, ebook $5.00
“There is a crying need in the church today for men to be men. But competing visions for what a man is to be ā€”some growing out of popular culture and others arising from flawed teaching in the churchā€”are exacerbating the problem.” 



For Her

My Beloved - Heart Pendant and Cord

For The Family

Pillowcase- I Love You by Faceplantā„¢

These would be perfect for couples, but kids would love them too.
I love you eye chart, Bates  MecantileCo’s Shop, on Etsy, $2.00

The Family Worship Book, Ligonier.org $16.00



For Friends

From The Mercy House Shop, $12.00
Sweet Talk Embroidered Towels, Organize.com temporarily out of stock šŸ™

ReisenthelĀ® City Shopper - Love

Do you make or buy your valentines? Maybe a little of both?




works for me wednesday at we are that family