April 2022 goals

1 April 2022

I’m not exactly sure how to feel about my goals as we wrap up the first quarter of 2022.

On the one hand, I have objectively made some fantastic progress so far with my 8 goals for the year. And that’s wonderful, because they’re all things that really matter to me! On the other hand, that progress seems to have come, either directly or indirectly, at the expense of two of my very favorite things: writing here and reading. (I’ve read three books so far this year – very slow for me – and am continually overestimating how many blog posts I’ll be able to share in a month.)

Are you familiar with the idea of equilibrium and disequilibrium in child development? Kids’ abilities often develop at different rates – they might experience a surge in their physical abilities, but lag in their ability to express themselves. When their various abilities are out of sync, they’re in disequilibrium and more easily frustrated; when their abilities even out, they’re in equilibrium and generally happier and at ease.

I think I might be in a little bit of the grown-up version of disequilibrium right now. That feels like a good way to describe the work of balancing competing priorities – with some surging ahead and some lagging behind – as other factors (growing kids, our social schedule and activities) shift underneath. I know we all experience this at different times – sending a hug if it’s hitting you in this season, too! This, too, shall pass.

Our St. Patrick’s Day after school snack

On my calendar this month:
— Opening night of our high school’s spring musical! One of our beloved babysitters is the lead and June is excited to bring her flowers.
Jekyll Island for spring break! Yes, we’re headed back… this time with another family member in tow!
— A trip to the WRAL Azalea Gardens when everything’s in bloom.

What I’m loving right now:
— I know it’s old news, but John and I watched Only Murders in the Building a few weeks ago and it was an absolute delight. I am predisposed to love anything Steve Martin and Martin Short do together, Selena Gomez rounded out the trio perfectly, and the sets were gorgeous. It’s one of those shows that I wish I could experience watching for the first time a second time.
— I have tried MANY kinds of natural deodorant over the years (Schmidt’s, Acure, Native…). Most were good-enough initially, but all seemed to lose their efficacy over time. My newest find is a little less flashy but, several months in, doing a superlative job. Summer will be the real test, but so far I highly recommend!
— I listened to this episode of Honestly right after I read “Your Bubble is not the Culture,” and I thought they intersected in interesting ways. Made me think of a pairing we’d dig into for Articles Club!

As a reminder, you can find alllll the things I’ve loved over the last few years neatly organized right here!

What I read in March:
Gentle and Lowly: I loved this book, which was unlike anything I’d read before. Based on Matthew 11:28-29, one of the only places in the Bible where Jesus describes himself (“I am gentle and humble in heart”), it’s a quiet, ponderous read that invites you to take it in slowly: it examines one small piece of scripture per chapter, and leans on a lot of writing from the Puritans (yes, really). My biggest takeaway was that rather than drawing away from or merely tolerating his people in their sin, that is when Jesus loves us the MOST – because he loves us so much, and hates sin so much, his love for us is most “activated” when he sees us hurt by it. (Kind of similar to seeing a loved one suffer from a cancer.) As humans, we constantly underestimate the overwhelming love of Jesus and God the Father, but this book helped to illuminate it for me.

My reading list for 2022, if you’d like to follow along!

Revisiting my March goals:
Cull and sort the first six months of 2021 photos (No real progress here – other things took priority!)
Lay out 2013 in family album
Lay out 2014 in family album and send it to print! (Waiting on a 40% off sale – which happens every other month or so – to pull the trigger, but it is in the cart and ready to go! HOORAY!!!)
Finish the Best of EFM page (Ditto to photo sorting)
Complete the third month of our fam Peloton challenge (Done! This was a much-needed and enjoyable kick start to our “comeback tour,” as John and I like to call it.)
Do PT exercises daily (Almost daily!)
Visit two community groups (One didn’t end up working out with our schedule, but we visited the other and it was lovely! Will continue!)
Follow the Matthew reading plan
Memorize another piece of scripture with June
Buy a small freezer for our garage (Not yet… marital conversations continuing…)
Refresh mantel for spring (with the help of this cutie garland from my friend)
Prep for Easter baskets
Book camping trip (Done! We’ll be glamping for our tenth-anniversary trip!!)

April goals:
— Cull and sort the second six months of 2021 photos (hope springs eternal?)
— Design and print camping tees for our tenth-anniversary trip
— Choose format for EFM book and complete years 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011 (this feels like a MASSIVE goal)
— Write down 2-3 weeks of “brainless” meal plans
— Choose a way to serve at church on Sunday mornings
— Make a final kitchen contractor decision and get a start date on the books (we’re so close!)
— Clean out kitchen cabinets in advance of our kitchen project
— Take our first bike ride as a family of five!

As a reminder, many of these are drawn from my 2022 goals!

Do we want to talk about disequilibrium and equilibrium, or does that just make us feel tired, ha?Which are you experiencing right now, if you’d like to share, or what’s a trade off you’re currently wrangling? (Here’s a perennial one of mine.)

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April 1, 2022 10:02 am

Gosh, Em. The opening paragraphs had me teary. You put words to what I’ve been feeling lately but haven’t been able to articulate. You have such a beautiful gift of putting words to feelings and making others feel seen. I’d love to hear more thoughts on disequilibrium and equilibrium. 18 months in to being a mom and a full time employee, and I find myself still wrestling to find a way to feel like I’m doing both well, while also caring about other things that matter to me (hobbies, friendships, etc.). I’ll be pondering this more over the weekend.

April 1, 2022 5:25 pm
Reply to  Bailey

Bailey, my thoughts are a similar echo of your comment. I have also been feeling the tension of disequilibrium and would love to hear more from Em about this. I am nearly nine months in to being a first time mom, 11 months out from the unexpected passing of my only sibling, juggling the learning curve of parenthood in tandem with grief, all while trying to learn how to keep up at work while prioritizing my faith, dear husband, family, and friends, and facing the daunting task of relocating my family. Disequilibrium perfectly describes this season of life and while wonderful, it is also challenging in multitudes of ways. Em, a post on this topic would mean a great deal to your readers!

April 1, 2022 10:55 am

I love any reminder of Jesus’ gentleness and I’m going to go look up that book now! I hope in the middle of all the goal and busy family life, you are able to carve time out to appreciate all you’ve accomplished this year, including knocking out so many items on your March list!
Love that snack plate! I’ve totally let go of celebrating minor holidays – Christmas is my jam and I do it well and the rest, I basically pass on. But things like this make me wistful. The kids actually surprised me today with several April Fool’s Day pranks and it took me longer than it should have to clue in to the fact today was April Fools.

April 1, 2022 9:04 pm

I am very excited to hear that you’re coming back to Jekyll!!! Maybe we’ll be running into you since I plan on taking many trips to our favorite local island ;) And how fun you’re going glamping for the tenth year anniversary. We’re actually giving it a try as well this year as part of our summer vacation! The kids are very excited!!

April 5, 2022 4:57 pm

If it makes you feel better, I think your cadence of posting is lovely. Also, I feel like this is a community that values quality over quantity from what I’ve seen :) Very cool to see that EFM book goal…I can imagine it seems incredibly daunting, but what a treasure it will be for you and your family when it’s completed. Cheering you on as you tackle it!