How My Weeklong Resolutions Went

WEEK ONE: WAKE UP EARLY

Alright well first off I obviously didn’t realize that starting this goal the morning of New Years would be a bad idea. So I opted to start on the 2nd. Heh heh oops. First impressions, wow my house is a lot cleaner doing this. I thought the days would drag on getting up early but they still zoom by like nothing. I definitely have a lot less patience with the kids haha. Days one and two went fine and then Day three was like NO! SNOOZE SNOOZE! WHY HAVE I DONE THIS?! WHY DID I RUIN A GOOD THING!? But I pushed through and actually went to bed on time that night haha. By the end of the week I started to get a stomach bug. On Friday I still got up early and got my kid ready for school but afterwards I was like… there’s nothing in the rules that says I can’t take a nap right now with my toddler watching YouTube kids. So I did. Is that a cheat? Probably. But I felt much better. My take away from this week was Yes I was absolutely more productive doing this, even with cheat naps. And yes I did find myself spending more time with my children because tasks were finished earlier. Bottom line is I feel a lot more open minded to early mornings than before I did this challenge.

WEEK TWO: NO SUGAR OR CHEESE

Day one went better than I imagined! I loved everything I ate and didn’t have any sugar withdrawals. I think it really helped that I prepped beforehand. Switching to sugar-free alternatives to foods I already ate regularly was the biggest reason this challenge wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be. Day four, I was like WOAH I have way more energy… but then two hours later, I TANKED. Day five, food started to become really boring. Does that make sense? Like I was getting bored with the limited options and nothing excited me in the same way a massive sugar overload would haha. All in all this was more doable than I thought it was. And making tiny sugar free switches is something that I can easily carry into the rest of the year.

WEEK THREE: TAKE KIDS OUT EVERY DAY

We went to Top Golf the first day and then the mall the second and third day. I love our local mall. It has a few play places and you can go there rain or unbearable Arizona shine. Right away I realized why I never take Casey out very much. Not only have I been pandemic trained to fear leaving my house but also **BABY**. I will say that it has been way more enjoyable than I imagined. I definitely plan on going to the mall once a week. Because Casey and I agreed that was our favorite activity. It’s interesting how these weekly challenges have been making real doable life changes. That wasn’t totally my intention but just showing myself “I could do it” naturally helped me to see what small things I could incorporate.

WEEK FOUR: KEEP A DAILY READING SCHEDULE

I learned quickly that one does not simply schedule quiet reading time with small children. So I basically just read whenever I found time. It was really fun and I was happy to prioritize it. I do wish I could have a scheduled reading time though and I may have to schedule it into my designated writing time if I can. Another thing I learned is that I don’t have to be scared of this. I know that sounds dumb, but I struggle with all or nothing mentality and it feels like I have to read a whole book right then and there or else I won’t. But this week I learned that I can read for enjoyment. Not because it’s a school assignment, or someone told me to, or I’m “researching my industry”, or I’ve set some unrealistic goal. But just simply for the pure enjoyment of devouring a story.

So that was how my months of challenges went! It was even more successful than I dreamed and genuinely helped me to find meaningful but doable changes in my life! So if you’re scared of making a change, try it for just a week!

Kids Say the Darndest (Jan 2023)

CASEY: *pointing to a white rose* Is this a cactus?
ME: You need to get out of Arizona once and a while.


JACK: This is an easy one. What’s 100 + 80?
ME: I don’t know what?
JACK: 180!
ME: Ohhhh.
JACK: Here’s a harder one. What’s baby + daddy?
ME: What?
JACK: A baby daddy.
ME: Hahaha what?
JACK: See that was a harder one.


CAEY: (bawling his absolute eyes out) I need help!
ME: Help with what?
CASEY: To fart on Jack!


ME: Jack can you hand me that pillow on the floor?
JACK: *points to a wrapped up dirty diaper* This?
ME: … No dude.


CASEY: I’m so sweaty! I’m one billion sweaty!


Jack takes his first sip of Mountain Dew ever.

JACK: This tastes like a yellow charge.


Casey has THE cutest habit of accidentally substituting a word for a different word. For example:

CASEY: Mom, watch out. That stick is so, so shark.

Or

CASEY: Mom, I have a new toy car.

ME: Oh, did Daddy tell you what it was?

CASEY: Yes it’s a porch car. I love my new porch.


We were trying to explain crushes to Jack (after his friend brought it up in the car).

ME: A crush is when you love someone so much and they are so special.

DAD: Do you have a crush on someone?

JACK: (thinks a bit) Yes. My crush is baby Andie.


CASEY: (taking giant steps) Prints. Prints. Prints. Prints.
ME: What are you doing?
CASEY: I’m leaving all my footprints on the floor see?
ME: (laughing) You’re so cute!
CASEY: I’m not cute. But flowers are!


Randomly during dinner, Jack blurts out

JACK: That would be so hard if everyone in the world was a baby.


*Dan and I talking in 2014*

ME: What do you think our kids are going to be like?

DAN: I hope they have the very best qualities of both you and I.

*2023*

CASEY: (running around with his matchbox cars) I’m a bad guy I’m going to get away from the police! You can’t put me in jail! I’m gonna fart attack you! Pbbbbbtttth! Heh heh heh now you’re all icky! (high pitched voice) Oh no! Call the ambulance! We need a mechanic! We’re all farted!

One Week Resolution Challenges

So I decided to try something new this year for “Resolutions”. Instead of coming up with some radical change that I won’t keep up on throughout the year, why don’t I challenge myself to a radical change for one week in the month of January? For some reason it just works for my brain. I think it’s because the ending makes it “a fun challenge”? Like more of a game with less pressure?


So these are the week challenges that I came up with. (Also try to refrain from judging me too much. I just struggle with these specific things even when others don’t.)

Week One – January 1st – 7th: WAKE UP EVERYDAY AT SIX O’CLOCK


So, I’m a bit lucky. My children have been very well trained with this magic dog alarm clock (here is the link, I highly highly recommend this or it’s equivalent.) So they know not to come out of their room before seven o’clock. On the weekends after seven o’clock, they tend to cuddle in our beds and play on their tablets. So sleeping in isn’t totally unheard of at our house.
And I know you’re like wait, excuse me, don’t you have a five month old? Yes, I do. She’s a miraculous child who often sleeps in until nine or nine thirty. She really loves to sleep I don’t know. It’s incredible.
HOWEVER… I know I would be a lot more productive and get to spend better quality time with my children if I woke up earlier.
If I got up at six, I could potentially clean or write before my children even leave their rooms. (At first idea, I was going to challenge myself to wake up at six and ‘go for a run around the neighborhood’. But it’s winter. So it’s really cold and pitch black at six. Maybe I can do another challenge month in the summer… when my excuse for not doing it can be that it’s one hundred degrees outside haha!)
One of my biggest qualms for waking up early… okay, besides the fact that my natural rhythm seems to be that of a teenager… is that I would have to go to bed earlier. And that cuts into my best friend time with Dan. You know what I mean? Like after the kids go to sleep that’s OUR time.

Week Two – January 8th – 14th: NO SUGAR OR CHEESE


Not to sound so American, but I have no idea what I’m even going to eat haha! I’m just going to try my best with the no sugar thing. I know there’s added sugar in almost everything here like even milk. So I think that’s okay for this particular challenge. Like if I have some ketchup or whatever and that has sugar in it. That’s okay as long as I’m aware and trying NOT to eat sugar. I think if I meal plan this week. I’ll be okay. It’s just a week… right?

It’s going to really hard haha! I am legitimately addicted to sugar. So I’m going to plan on having a lot of natural sugars in the house like fruits I can snack on when I get those cravings. And healthy salty alternatives.
Just… pray for me. Hahaha

Week Three – January 15th – 21st: TAKE MY KIDS OUT EVERY SINGLE DAY


A lot of parents don’t seem to have this problem. But keep in mind that I am a hermit basement dweller writer type. I am such a homebody that maybe the home is actually my body and I’m just an organ of it (short story idea?!?!?). But I do see this as something that my kids would benefit a little bit from. Particularly my four-year-old who is not in school yet and gets REALLY BORED during the day. So I do aspire to give him more structure. I don’t know WHY taking little kids out and about gives me so much anxiety but dang it, I’m going to fight this. And I’m going to prove to myself after this week that I can TOTALLY DO IT!*
*Saying this now or forever hold my peace. If I or any of the kids get sick, this challenge will be rescheduled. We’re not spreading germs or forcing our bodies to overdo it.

Week Four – January 22nd – 28th: INCORPORATE A REGULAR READING (OR LISTENING) ROUTINE


This is most likely an ADHD disability. Which has been really painful for me, since stories are my greatest love in life. I either hyper focus and burst read or the most common problem for me is starting and not finishing a book. Of course, the horrific TBR pile, which for me is an entire bookcase. So I really WANT to overcome this problem in my life. It would improve my craft tremendously and I know that I would really enjoy being able to participate more as an audience in the written word.
So I’m planning on trying a routine. Every day for seven days. What that routine will look like, I’m not sure yet because I have teeny little kids at home, but I feel fairly confident that it might include Audio books. I’m hoping that whatever it is, I can prove to myself that it’s doable and incorporate more of it into my daily life.

These are all my challenges. I will check back in February to tell you how they went. And just in general, how week long challenges were vs. indefinite resolutions. Because I wasn’t totally kidding about a second summer challenge month IF this deems itself to be a successful venture.